Jim Wyatt, SENIOR WRITER/EDITOR
NASHVILLE – The NFL Draft is edging closer, and the players won’t be the only ones taking the stage.
So will musicians, and we’re finding out more about the lineup.
Multi-Platinum singer/songwriter Dierks Bentley will headline a free outdoor concert on Saturday, April 27 as part of the 2019 NFL Draft and St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon and ½ Marathon at the Draft Main Stage in downtown Nashville.
Also, more than 20 Nashville-based acts representing diverse genres of music will perform during the three days of activities on the Draft Main Stage and at the NFL Draft Experience, a free admission football festival held outside Nissan Stadium.
Today, the NFL announced 14 more of the 20 acts. Additional performances will be announced in the coming weeks.
Earlier this week, the NFL and Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp announced Grammy-winner Tim McGraw will be the headline for the NFL Draft on Friday, April 26 and GRAMMY-winning gospel music great CeCe Winans will sing the National Anthem to help open NFL Draft activities on Thursday, April 25.
The NFL Draft is scheduled for April 25-27.
No tickets are needed to attend the draft – it’s free.
Among those scheduled to perform at the football festival held outside Nissan Stadium: Country/rock “Nashville” TV show star Chip Esten, alternative country/Americana artist Rayland Baxter, pop and indie rock artist Mikky Ekko, and country singer-songwriter Charlie Worsham.
“We are confident that this year’s NFL Draft will be an unforgettable experience for our fans and the entire Nashville community, showcasing an exciting fusion of football and music” said NFL Executive Vice President, Club Business & League Events, Peter O’Reilly. “We are grateful for Dierks and all the Nashville-based acts for generously giving their time to our fans to celebrate in the biggest show in Music City.”
The 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville is expected to be the largest event in Nashville and the state of Tennessee given the anticipated attendance over three days, national networks and media coverage. A crowd of 300,000 is expected over the three days of the event.
“Nashville’s NFL Draft is shaping up to be the best ever,” Nashville Mayor David Briley said. “Dierks and the other acts announced today will only add to the amazing atmosphere we are creating for the event. Nashville’s music scene is truly special, one of the major reasons I believe the NFL wanted to come to our city.”
Downtown Nashville’s Lower Broadway and the area outside Nissan Stadium will host free, public activities for the 2019 NFL Draft.
McGraw will perform a free outdoor concert on Lower Broadway on Friday, April 26 at the Draft Main Stage, which is where the player selections will take place. Bentley will perform on Saturday, April 27. The McGraw and Bentley concerts will both begin at the conclusion of selection activities on Friday and Saturday.
The 20th running of the St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon & ½ Marathon also is taking place April 27 and the Bentley concert will double as the traditional headlining concert for the running event’s participants on Saturday, April 27.
“This year’s St. Jude Rock ‘n’ Roll Nashville Marathon & 1/2 Marathon and NFL Draft festivities are going to be memorable as we celebrate 20 years and the NFL celebrates 100 years.” said Keats McGonigal, Senior Regional Director for Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series. “We are excited to work closely with the NFL and the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp. to engage our runners in the numerous events and concerts during the 2019 NFL Draft. This is especially true on Saturday night with Dierks Bentley, which gives our runners an exciting headliner to celebrate the conclusion of our race in Music City.”
Draft Main Stage on Lower Broadway
Friday, April 26: Tim McGraw
Saturday, April 27: Dierks Bentley
NFL Draft Experience Stage
Thursday, April 25:
New North (Americana)
Striking Matches (alternative rock, pop rock and blues rock)
Mikky Ekko (alternative)
Friday, April 26:
Willie Jones (country)
Kid Politics (indie pop)
Jessi Wilson (neo soul/rock)
Charlie Worsham (country singer-songwriter)
Jonny P (soul)
Rayland Baxter (alternative)
Saturday, April 27:
Katie Schecter (Rock n Roll and soul)
Jason Eskridge (soul)
Three Star Revival (soul/jam/funk/Americana/rock)
Andrew Combs (indie folk)
Chip Esten (country/rock “Nashville” TV show star)
NFL Draft Experience hours of operation:
April 25 (Thursday): 12PM to 10PM
April 26 (Friday): 12PM to 10PM
April 27 (Saturday): 9AM to 6PM
Activations at the NFL Draft Experience:
Autograph Stage with current NFL players and NFL Legends
Interactive games, Play Football clinics, and PLAY 60 Zone presented by Danimals® for the smallest NFL fans
NFL Shop presented by Visa at Draft with exclusive NFL merchandise
Taste of Tailgate with Nashville restaurants and Bud Light Bars
NFL Draft Experience Stage featuring 14 Nashville-based artists of all genres
Look Like a Pro: Step inside a replica NFL Draft Main Stage bearing a draft day jersey of your favorite NFL team and have your photo taken. Share your photos through your favorite social channel and Fan Mobile Pass.
PEPSI NFL Helmet Photo Opportunity: Find your favorite NFL team oversized helmet and have your photo taken. Share your photos through your favorite social channel and Fan Mobile Pass.
40-Yard Dash: Race down the field against your opponents and digital NFL players on a giant 40-yard long LED wall.
Vertical Jump: Jump as high as you can and hit the corresponding flag to discover your vertical reach just like at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Fans can follow the action at NFL Draft 2019 with the Fan Mobile Pass app. The app will serve as the central hub for information and updates on the Draft Experience and concert series, and a chance to gain access to exclusive viewing areas at the NFL Draft Main Stage to watch in person as the picks unfold and Draft boards come to life. The Fan Mobile Pass app will be available in early/mid-April, and all fans who pre-register will be notified when the app is available.
Register HERE for the NFL Fan Mobile Pass.
Click HERE for additional information about the NFL Draft in Nashville.
Earlier information released by the NFL and the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corpon NFL Draft weekend:
The main NFL Draft stage will be on First and Broadway. Draft picks on the main stage will take place the evenings of April 25 (Thursday) and April 26 (Friday) and during the afternoon of April 27 (Saturday).
Schermerhorn Symphony Center will be host to Selection Square, which features the team tables where representatives from each club will make their draft selections.
The NFL Draft Experience, a three-day football festival, will be held in the parking lots and areas surrounding Nissan Stadium.
The NFL Draft Red Carpet will take place on April 25 (Thursday) at The Green at Riverfront Park.
Concerts with “high level talent” are being planned for on the main stage on Broadway all three days, and on another stage across the Cumberland River.
Admission is free. There will be limited seating areas (and some VIP areas), but the idea is most fans can stand, and walk.
The NFL and the city are expecting crowds approaching 300,000 for the weekend in an area organizers are calling the largest festival footprint ever for an NFL Draft.