The hallmark of tonight's CMT Music Awards looks to be pairing performers with partners twice their size (or half, depending on how you're looking at it).
And then we have Barack Obama and Mitt Romney... who, sadly, will not appear side by side, but will have adjoining appearances in taped bits at the top of the show. As viewers with longish memories will remember, this recalls the brief scripted schtick that Obama and John McCain did for the opening of the 2008 CMTs, when they pretended to be eager to nab tickets for the show because Miley Cyrus was co-hosting. (Remember when Miley was a phenomenon and/or deemed country-audience-friendly? That seems way longer ago than the waning days of the Bush administration.)
Of course, there is no major difference in stature between Romney and Obama. (Feel free to insert your own joke here, depending on your political affiliation.)
What else can you expect from the CMT Awards? We were at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena during rehearsals, and can offer you a few other tidbits:
* Hosts Keith and Bell will enter the arena from the rear in a sort of giant chariot, the unique design of which is directly related to one of Toby's most recent hits. Perhaps you can guess the color and product affiliated with their ride. "We got it from the guy who makes Lady Gaga's crazy eggs," he quipped while rehearsing the opening duo-monologue.
* The first performance of the evening will be Lady Antebellum and Nashville-based pop band Hot Chelle Rae mashing up their respective hits "We Owned the Night" and "Tonight, Tonight."
* The biggest mashup of the night, in terms of sheer personnel, will occur about halfway through the show when Willie Nelson sings a light-heartedly provocative number from his latest album. On "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die," Willie will be joined by longtime partner Keith as well as Zac Brown, Jamey Johnson, and Darius Rucker. (No sign of Snoop Dogg, who appears with Nelson on the studio version.)
However, the folks doing the seating arrangements did have some feuds to consider. And we can verify for you that Miranda Lambert and Eric Church are not seated in the same section, though they will have to walk up and down the same aisle, which we can only hope leads to some newsworthily awkward encounters.
Isn't it a shame, meanwhile, that Greene and Jamey Johnson are seated three seats apart instead of right next to each other? What gossip-monger wouldn't want to see those two hook up as the odd couple of 2012?
- Arts & Entertainment
- Rascal Flatts
- Rascal Flatts
- Kristen Bell
- Toby Keith
- Barack Obama
- Kristen Chenoweth
- CMT Music Awards