Backstreet Boys will honor Florida Georgia Line while Phillip Phillips will celebrate Sam Hunt

By Karen Mizoguchi
October 18, 2017 09:00 AM

A boy band and an American Idol winner have been added to the roster of performers for the 2017 CMT Artists of the Year special.

A.J. McLean, Howie Dorough, Nick Carter, Kevin Richardson, and Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys will be taking the stage to celebrate their good friends this year’s honorees Florida Georgia Line.

Meanwhile, Phillip Phillips will toast inaugural song of the year winner Sam Hunt.

Other honorees include Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Chris Stapleton and Keith Urban.

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Earlier this month, CMT announced its plans to transform this year’s CMT Artists of the Year special from a year-end celebration applauding country music’s top artists this year into a night of hope and healing through the power of music following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria as well as the tragic Oct. 1 shooting in Las Vegas.

Grammy-nominated singer Andra Day and Grammy winners Little Big Town will kick off the evening with a performance “Rise Up.” Day, Little Big Town and Grammy winner Lee Ann Womack will also perform Day’s new collaboration “Stand Up For Something” with Common.

The eighth annual special will air live from Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET/PT.