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Rising country singer/songwriters also play a prominent role in the hour-long special, “In The Spotlight with Robin Roberts: Bright Lights. Big Stars. All Access Nashville,” airing Tuesday, Nov. 10 at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.
“In The Spotlight” greets Carrie Underwood, award-winning singer and former “American Idol” winner, in her hometown of Checotah, Okla.
On a private tour with Roberts, Underwood opens up about the cost of achieving fame at a young age and her current romance with Ottawa Senators hockey player Mike Fisher. And newly released home video shows Underwood singing in grade school performances and participating in beauty pageants.
Music and film star Tim McGraw takes his turn in the spotlight, showing Roberts around his family farm near Nashville, where skeet-shooting and horseback riding are everyday activities.
McGraw talks about how he reconciled with his biological father, professional baseball player, Tug McGraw. In the interview, he shares intimate feelings of being a father of three and husband to Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Faith Hill.
Martina McBride, one of the first ladies of country music, also opens up her home and takes Roberts to Blackbird Recording Studios, where she recorded many hit records.
McBride, 43, describes entering the music business, balancing work and mothering three children and competing with 20-something female stars. She also dishes on her decision to wear a bikini on the July 2009 cover of Shape magazine, which raised a few eyebrows.
Sometimes a famous last name in country music can bring both assets and liabilities. In Hurricane Mills, Tenn., Roberts interviews the original coal miner’s daughter, Loretta Lynn and country star Rosanne Cash, daughter of Johnny Cash.
Meanwhile, the next generation of country music royalty isn’t waiting in the wings. Young singers including Tayla Lynn, granddaughter of Loretta Lynn, and Jenny Gill, daughter of Vince Gill, mix their talent with their famous last names to succeed in Nashville.
Exclusive Web-Only Features
In addition to the TV special, additional exclusive interview footage, videos, photos and music will be available at a new, special section at www.abcnews.com/country.
“In The Spotlight” asks Americans to answer the question: What do you think is the greatest country song of all time?
Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts and even America’s “Country Music Fan in Chief,” President Barack Obama weigh in with their choices.