By: Kathryn E. Darden
The Country Music Association’s CMA Music Festival (formerly Fan Fair) is in high gear in Nashville this week and is experiencing a record turnout. I had the opportunity
 to check it out on Friday, June 11, 2010 when I visited the Nashville Convention Center and LP Field. Although I am a Nashville native, this was my first time to ever visit the CMA Music Festival or Fan Fair, and it was a crash course in country music.
Temperatures had hit the low 90s by the time I made it to downtown Nashville in the late afternoon after waiting for an air conditioner repairman all day. Nashville skies were partially overcast as the sun set, but that did nothing to ease the heat and humidity that persisted well into the night. However, the Nashville Convention Center was cool, so I started my CMA Music Fest adventure in the exhibit hall.
Brantley Gilbert
I began my tour of CMA Music Fest booths by meeting Brantley Gilbert. Although this Georgia boy looked more like a rapper than a country artist, Gilbert performs country music with a rock spin and had performed earlier that day on the Chevy Music Stage. His most recent project is “Halfway to Heaven.” 

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