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The O2's first Country Music festival show - C2C: Country To Country announced at The O2

Country superstars are joining forces for the first time in London to create C2C: Country to Country. Some of the biggest names in the business are heading across the Atlantic for a huge two-day music festival extravaganza at The O2 London in March 2013.

On Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 March 2013, C2C: Country to Country will see a line up of some of the leading country music artists in the world on stage together, including Tim McGraw, Carrie Underwood, Darius Rucker, Vince Gill, Little Big Town, Brantley Gilbert, Kristian Bush, LeAnn Rimes and others to be announced shortly.

The sound of Nashville at the world's most popular venue marks a major milestone in the UK's love of country, where major US artists sell out arenas around the country.

The likes of LeAnn Rimes and Carrie Underwood have had a massive effect on both the UK and US charts by appealing to modern day listeners while echoing the traditional sounds of the greatest country singers. Carrie Underwood's sell out London performance last summer was the latest milestone and illustrated the UK's huge appetite for the new sounds of country.

The O2 and SJM Concerts in association with the Country Music Association have established C2C with the intention of it becoming an annual event.

Jay Marciano, President and CEO of AEG Europe said: "As The O2 is the world's most popular venue, the creation of C2C: Country to Country, will allow us to continue to maintain that position; our focus is to bring new and exciting events to UK music fans. SJM Concerts and The O2 have jointly created this festival which we anticipate will become a sought after annual event. C2C: Country to Country will cater to the thousands of country music fans in the UK who want to experience some of the biggest names in country music all in one place."

Headlining on Saturday 16 is the multi-award winning Tim McGraw has had 11 consecutive albums that debuted at Number One on the Billboard albums charts. He is the winner of 3 Grammys, 14 Academy of Country Music awards, 11 Country Music Association (CMA) awards, 10 American Music Awards, and 3 People's Choice Awards - a true superstar and amazing headline to the opening day of C2C: Country to Country

Speaking about the forthcoming event, Tim said: "Our trip to the UK and playing The O2 is one of the things I'm looking forward to the most for next year," said McGraw. "I love being able to take my music to other countries, and I think there are a lot of new songs on TWO LANES OF FREEDOM that fans over there will really dig. It's going to be a blast!"

Headlining on Sunday 17 will be Carrie Underwood, with 15 million album sales worldwide and five Grammy Awards. Carrie has transcended expectations and the country music genre like no other, and her musical vital statistics are astonishing.

Carrie, who sold out London's Royal Albert Hall in record time this summer, said, "I love the idea of a country music festival in London and I'm so excited that so many amazing artists are coming together for Country to Country. I feel honored to help represent country music, and I know it's going to be a really fun weekend!"

As part of a new, recently launched initiative, CMA is investing in an international Country Music industry education and awareness strategy. CMA's partnership with C2C: County to Country is an exciting platform to showcase some of the most popular artists in the format. CMA will bring the power of extensive assets to help promote the event worldwide. Website features with C2C: Country to Country artist interviews, social posts and digital content are just a few of the ways that Country Music Association's fan base will be engaged.

Steve Moore, CEO of CMA said: "We at CMA are thrilled to be involved with the Country to Country music festival at The O2 arena. It will prove to be the beginning of an annual music tradition that Nashville artists can perform and build new fans throughout the UK and Europe."

BBC Radio 2 is the official radio partner, with Bob Harris, King of all things country, supporting the event and will be broadcasting highlights. Bob said: "It's fantastic to see such a great line-up of major Nashville talent performing in the UK. There's a very vibrant music scene in Nashville at the moment and it feels like a particularly exciting time for country music. I'm so pleased that British audiences are being given the opportunity to see some of country music's greatest stars performing live, and am personally thrilled to be able to reflect such a great weekend of music on my Radio 2 country show."

Taking place at The O2, the world's leading music venue, C2C: Country to Country will be a festival platform to bring country music headliners together in one place, for one weekend. Much more than just a music festival it will be a celebration of country style and culture and will see The O2 transformed into a mini Nashville.

Chris York, Director of SJM Concerts said "We are proud to be working with Jay and his team at The O2 to deliver an event of this caliber in the UK. The talent is fabulous and we look forward to growing C2C: Country to Country to be the place to see the best in US Country artists in the best venue setting."

With more artists and stages to be announced for 60,000 music fans across the weekend C2C: Country to Country is not to be missed:

Saturday 16 March
Tim McGraw
Vince Gill
Little Big Town
Kristian Bush

Sunday 17 March
Carrie Underwood
Darius Rucker
LeAnn Rimes
Brantley Gilbert

Tickets go on sale Friday 7 December at 9am.

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