Rita Wilson to Host CMT's Kenny Rogers Benefit Show After Coronavirus Recovery

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Rita Wilson will help pay tribute to the late country music legend, Kenny Rogers. CMT announced on Monday that the 63-year-old actress will host CMT GIANTS Kenny Rogers: A Benefit For MusiCares, a star-studded special that will honor the late country star, who died last month at age 81. Wilson's hosting gig comes after she and her husband, Tom Hanks, recovered from the coronavirus in Australia and returned home to Los Angeles.

"Kenny Rogers introduced so many to country music. His songs crossed over into many genres," Wilson said in a press release. "I’ll never forget the evocative angst in Kenny’s voice on 'Ruby,' the unmistakable hooks and his unique, authentic ability to tell a story in 'The Gambler,' and of course, the perfection of his duet with Dolly Parton, 'Islands in the Stream.' Kenny’s impact has been indelible."

"It’s an honor to be hosting CMT GIANTS Kenny Rogers and to share in an evening of Kenny’s songs with so many iconic artists," she added.

Last week, the network announced that stars including Dolly Parton, Gavin DeGraw, Jason Isbell, Amanda Shires, Jennifer Nettles, Lady Antebellum, Lionel Richie, Michael McDonald, Randy Houser, Rascal Flatts and Vince Gill will appear on the special for virtual performances and interviews.

Additionally, rare archival photos, interviews, and performances from Rogers himself will be included.

Throughout the tribute, fans will have the opportunity to donate to MusiCares' COVID-19 Relief Fund, which is working to provide funds directly to those in the music industry who have the greatest need due to the coronavirus pandemic. Half of all funds raised will go directly to the Nashville country community.

During the broadcast, those who wish can donate by visiting www.musicares.org/kennyrogers or by texting  KENNYCARES to 41444.

CMT GIANTS Kenny Rogers: A Benefit for MusiCares will premiere Wednesday, April 8 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CMT. Encores of the special will air April 10 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on MTV Live and April 11 at 12:00 p.m. ET/PT on CMT.

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