Music legend Rayna Jaymes (Connie Britton) reigns as the Queen of Country, but after two decades, her grip on the throne is slipping. Rayna refuses to be steamrolled by her record label as they present a new arrangement. And in the face of an evolving industry, Rayna is struggling to adapt and reinvent herself, which she must do if she plans to stay relevant.
Juliette Barnes (Hayden Panettiere) is sexy, sassy, and trails trouble in her wake— she’s also the country’s #1 crossover artist. In her climb to the top, Juliette's public image is threatened by circumstances she struggles to control. And while she is determined to sit on Rayna's throne, Juliette refuses to deal with her difficult past.
Offstage, things aren't much smoother for Rayna. Her father, Lamar Wyatt (Powers Boothe), Nashville's most influential businessman, continues to complicate her life. Their strained relationship is defined by years of resentment and secrets that come to a head when Lamar and Rayna’s sister, Tandy, push Rayna's husband to run for mayor. For husband Teddy Conrad (Eric Close), this marks an opportunity to share the spotlight with his wife instead of continuing to be the man behind the woman.
The city of Nashville is the stage for many hopefuls: Deacon Claybourne (Charles Esten), Rayna's longtime bandleader whose unrequited love for Rayna prevents him from claiming success if he went on his own. Scarlett O'Connor (Clare Bowen), the beautiful and gifted songwriter, who's here to support her boyfriend Avery's talent while still unsure of her own. Avery Barkley (Jonathan Jackson), a struggling alt-country musician, who can't help but feel left behind when his girlfriend Scarlett's songs have a chance to find an audience before his own. And Gunnar Scott (Sam Palladio), a wholesome up-and-coming crooner, who finds a musical soul mate in Scarlett, coming in between her relationship with Avery.
Nashville is Music City U.S.A. It’s where today's top recording artists lay down tracks while tomorrow's undiscovered talent fight to be heard. With the backdrop of a thriving contemporary music scene, and a tense mayoral race, "Nashville" takes us into the cutthroat world of music and politics, showing what it really means to become a star and stay one.