Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley return for their 10th run as the hosts of the 2017 Country Music Association Awards, aka the CMAs. And, according to the LA Times, though the hosts hope to honor and speak lightly about the recent tragedies that have gone on in our country, journalists on the red carpet have been given guidelines when it comes to these subjects. Journalists are not allowed to ask entertainers about “the Las Vegas tragedy, gun rights, political affiliations or topics of the like” tonight so that everyone feels comfortable and can celebrate a joyous event. And, if these guidelines are not followed, a member of the media’s “credential [would] be reviewed and potentially revoked via security escort.” So, it’s safe to say that this will remain a light-hearted musical event to celebrate artists including Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban, Eric Church, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. The show is set to air on the ABC network at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT. But, if you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can watch ABC online, on your phone or on another streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services. They cost a monthly fee but all come with a free trial, so you can watch tonight’s show for free if you’re in a select market:
DirecTV Now: ABC (live in 39 markets) is included in all four channel packages, ranging from $35 to $70 per month. It comes with a free 7-day trial, and you can watch on your computer via your browser, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app
Sling TV: ABC (live in 8 markets) is included in the “Sling Orange” plus “Broadcast Extra” channel package for $25 per month. It comes with a free 7-day trial, and you can watch on your computer via your browser, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Sling TV app
PlayStation Vue: ABC (live in 19 markets) is included in all four channel packages, ranging from $40 to $75 per month. It comes with a free 5-day trial, and you can watch on your computer via your browser, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the PlayStation Vue app
While our nation’s tragedies are forbidden from the red carpet, show hosts Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood say that they will be incorporating current events in their skits on stage. But, Underwood did say this can be a challenge when it comes to writing jokes. She explained to ABC, “It’s hard to get things that are relevant that we can kind of plan for. You know, something that everybody’s talking about today, they may not be talking about in a week. So it’s kind of trying to find that balance of things that people will still find funny, even in a week … We’ve always said that we want to make fun of things that are funny. It’s not about any political party or any person or any anything. It’s just about making fun of things that are funny.” Paisley shared his own thoughts on this in an interview with USA Today, saying that, “This isn’t the easiest year to do comedy. But it’s also in some ways the most important (year). Because there’s two ways you could go about this show, and I prefer the one that’s uplifting, and takes us and says ‘It’s more important than ever that we play country music. It’s more important than ever that we laugh, and that we love one another and come together.” Both Underwood and Paisley are pulling double duty tonight as hosts and performers. Plus, Underwood is one of the show’s nominees. Miranda Lambert is the star who leads the pack with five nominations this year, though she is not nominated in the category of Entertainer of the Year.
In addition to watching the show online, there are several live streams available for watching the red carpet interviews and arrivals. The official CMA Awards red carpet show will air live on Twitter and you can check it out by clicking here. It will begin at 7 p.m. ET/6 p.m. CT. You can also watch a live stream of the red carpet, which starts at 6:30 p.m. ET/5:30 p.m. CT, compliments of The Tennessean in the below video.