From its early days as a country music headquarters to its current reign as a hub for classic sitcoms and movies, CMT has enjoyed a decades-long history in the cable and satellite television sphere. With that being said, it’s easy to lose the station in the hundreds upon hundreds of channels offered to DISH Network subscribers. We’ll help you track down the channel number for CMT below as well as explore some of the most popular programming on the TV station today.
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CMT Channel Guide
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The History of CMT
Where better to begin the history of CMT than outside of Nashville, Tennessee? The station originated in the suburb of Hendersonville, officially launching in March 1983 as a home for country music and country music videos to rival MTV and the like. As it turned out, audiences were desperate for such a television station. CMT saw rising success throughout the remainder of the ’80s and into the ’90s. It was at this point, back in 1991, that the network was sold to Opryland USA owner Gaylord Entertainment Company.
Now better known as Ryman Hospitality Properties, this new ownership brought with it the introduction of new and original programming to CMT. Another sale came just a handful of years later, this time to Westinghouse. At the time, Westinghouse presided over CBS and its sister stations. A few years later, another sale came along. This time, it was to Viacom — coincidentally, the owner of MTV. (Talk about a full circle moment.) The new ownership gradually cut back on country music programming and shifted more toward scripted and unscripted originals.
It was a similar trajectory to that of MTV. Both stations first hit the airwaves as hubs for music and music videos, only to take a hard turn away from such programming in the 2000s. CMT saw much greater success with unscripted programming over its brief foray into scripted originals. But, as the 2000s gave way to the ’10s (and again into the ’20s), the network gradually cut back on original programming altogether and shifted focus to reruns of classic sitcoms and broadcasts of popular films from the ’80s, ’90s, 2000s, and today.
CMT Sister Stations
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Today, CMT’s programming is a long way off from the music videos and country music featurettes that made up its foundation in the early 1980s. These days, you’re more likely to find sitcom reruns and edited-for-TV feature films. (Though the station does still find time for music videos and country programming in the early hours of the morning and the occasional big event.) Here’s a rundown of CMT’s typical programming.
Despite a hard shift away from predominantly country music coverage, CMT does still have its fair share of country music programming. While infrequent compared to the sitcoms and movies it airs, CMT still creates the occasional new episodes of Crossroads, Giants, Hot 20 Countdown, Campfire Sessions, Storytellers, Summer Camp, Summer Sessions, and the annual CMT Music Awards.
On the syndicated side of things, CMT’s programming truly runs the gamut. You’ll find retro throwbacks like The Golden Girls. Hits from the ’90s and 2000s like The King of Queens, Roseanne, and Reba. Contemporary sitcoms such as Last Man Standing, Mike & Molly, Mom, and Young Sheldon. Plus, reruns of sister station Paramount Network’s hit show Yellowstone.
Lastly, CMT airs plenty of feature films to fill in its daily programming blocks. Recent examples include Top Gun (1986), Pretty Woman (1990), Forrest Gump (1994), and My Cousin Vinny (1992). There are even some newer titles in the mix, including lighthearted contemporary fare like Burlesque (2010) and The Proposal (2009).