The Cast of ABC’s Nashville: Live in New York City

ABC Nashville- Live in Concert
(Featuring Charles Esten, Clare Bowen, Sam Palladio,
Chris Carmack, Jonathan Jackson, Will Chase, & Chaley Rose)
Best Buy Theater, New York City
May 6, 2014

ABC’s hit television show, Nashville, which has its season 2 finale this Wednesday, brought a talented group of its actors to the Best Buy Theater in the heart of Times Square, New York City this past Tuesday.  What followed was a truly unique display of musicianship complete with collaborations, solo’s, songs from the series, as well as some original songs penned by the actors/artists themselves.  Any fan of the show “Nashville” who missed out on this Tour really missed out as it was remarkable to see how each and every one of the cast was genuinely talented. 

The night kicked off with Chris Carmack, who plays Will Lexington, singing “What If I Was Willing”.  Carmack was the first surprise of the night as his live voice was much stronger than I had expected it to.  His performances that night included some original material as well as songs that Will had performed on the show.  He was equally handy with an acoustic guitar as he was with an electric.  His character is one of the most haunted on the show, yet Carmack was all smiles throughout the night as he seemed to enjoy himself most on the live stage.

As I expected, Sam Palladio was the most impressive both vocally and musically.  Palladio, who plays, Gunnar, the rising songwriter on Nashville, hit ridiculous high notes all night long as he performed some of the show’s most recognizable songs.  Arguably the most memorable moments of the night were when he combined vocals with Clare Bowen (Scarlett) for a hauntingly beautiful combination, highlighted by “If I Didn’t Know Better”. 

Palladio also sang a few songs which he personally had written.  “Wake Me Up in Nashville” was a true story in which he recounts a story his grandfather had told him.  Further, he was asked to come out and sing or play the drums for pretty much each of his other castmates.  ZAG (Zooey, Avery & Gunnar on the show) even reunited for a thrilling rendition of “I Ain’t Leaving Without Your Love”.  From the music side, Palladio’s brillance shined the brightest and most often on the NYC stage.


Charles Esten, better known as Deacon, seemed to get the biggest response from the crowd as the first time he appeared the applause was defeaning.  Esten performed several songs that night, both solo and with his castmates.  “This Town” along with Clare Bowen was so dark and stirring that it gave me goosebumps.  Further, he added some original material and was part of the rousing threesome with Chris Carmack and Will Chase on “It’s On Tonight”. 

Jonathan Jackson, who plays Avery on the TV show, showcased his versatilty as he performed songs both rock and roll as well as country, while playing both the piano and guitar.  He was also part of multiple collaborations, but his songs “Morning of the Rain” and “One Night Shining” were his strongest.  He was asked by many of his castmates to come out and play guitar behind them as he showcased a strong musical foundation all night long. 

Clare Bowen added some female star power to the otherwise male dominated cast that night and with good measure.  She was mostly very bubbly and full smiles on stage as she really seemed to enjoy herself.  She even shaked her body around in some ways that Scarlett would never on the show, but no one seemed to mind at all.  Her rendition of the dark “Black Roses” brought about a standing ovation as he vocals were both passionate and powerful.  As stated, her performances with Palladio were hauntingly phenomenal.  She stated she is actually writing her own songs for an upcoming album which got a huge applause from the crowd. 

Bowen collaborated with just about everyone, including “Ball and Chain” with Will Chase (ask Luke Wheeler).  Chase was another really surprising talent as his moves on stage were as cool as his vocals.  Esten said it best when he said that he was such a great addition to the show.  As I understand it, this was the only tour stop where Chase would perform, and that is a shame because his multiple collaborations were stirring. 

It was also a treat to have Chaley Rose show up as she was not listed as one of the cast set to perform that night.  She looked absolutely stunning in a white dress and her vocals alongside Palladio, Jackson, and Esten on several songs really added some terrific harmonies.  She has been a great addition to the show and was a great surprise for the live concert. 

 All in all the show was one of a kind.  I’ve been to several hundred concerts in my life and this really had a different feel.  We got to know the artist behind the actor on a beloved television series and none of them dissapointed.  When they all got together on stage for the encore, Esten thanked all the fans and said how much they loved doing the show (and hoped to do more in future seasons).  The final song was “A Life That’s Good” which became a beautiful sing-a-long for all the cast as well as the sold out NYC crowd. 


  1. What If I Was Willing – Chris Carmack
  2. Just  Can’t Get It Right – Sam Palladio
  3. Keep Asking Why – Jonathan Jackson
  4. Gonna Go Crazy – Clare Bowen
  5. Just Like New – Charles Esten (with Chaley Rose, Jonathan Jackson & Sam Palladio)
  6. A Showman’s Life – Chris Carmack
  7. Holding My Breath For You (Original Song) – Chris Carmack
  8. Morning of the Rain – Jonathan Jackson
  9. Don’t You Wanna Be My Girl – Jonathan Jackson & Sam Palladio
  10. I Ain’t Leavin’ Without Your Love – Chaley Rose, Jonathan Jackson & Sam Palladio
  11. It’s On Tonight – Will Chase, Charles Esten, & Chris Carmack
  12. Ball & Chain – Will Chase & Clare Bowen
  13. Fade Into You – Clare Bowen & Sam Palladio
  14. This Town – Clare Bowen & Charles Esten
  15. Climb The Walls (Original Song) – Charles Esten
  16. Wake Me Up in Nashville (Original Song) – Sam Palladio
  17. Driftwood (Original Song) – Sam Palladio
  18. Cheap Red Wine (Original Song) – Clare Bowen (with Jonathan Jackson)
  19. Black Roses – Clare Bowen
  20. Put A Hurting On Me – Will Chase & Chris Carmack
  21. One Night Shining – Jonathan Jackson (with Sam Palladio)
  22. If I Didn’t Know Better – Clare Bowen & Sam Palladio
  23. Heart Playing Tricks On My mind – Charles Esten (with Sam Palladio)
  24. A Life That’s Good (ENCORE) – Full Cast