Austin City Limits is proud to spotlight a pair of country originals with Country Music Hall of Fame legend Tanya Tucker sharing an hour with breakout newcomer Brittney Spencer. The new installment premieres February 3 at 7pm CT/8pm ET as part of the series Season 49. ACL airs weekly on PBS stations nationwide (check local listings) and full episodes are made available to stream online at pbs.org/austincitylimits immediately following the initial broadcast. The show’s official hashtag is #acltv. 2024 marks the 50th Anniversary of the revered music institution, which continues its extraordinary run as the longest-running music television show in history, providing viewers a front-row seat to the best in live performance for an incredible five decades. A monument to music, ACL has showcased iconic performances from legends and innovators in every genre of popular song for 50 years. Produced by Austin PBS, and recorded live at ACL’s studio home ACL Live in Austin, Texas, the show remains a required stopping point for the finest acts to deliver stellar performances from the venerable ACL stage. On October 17, 1974, the notoriously TV-shy Willie Nelson taped the pilot episode; the trailblazing series then premiered on PBS in 1975. This Peabody Award-winning program has earned its place in history and will salute its golden anniversary and incredible legacy with a yearlong celebration featuring archival gems, all-star tapings, a PBS special, live concerts and much more.
Living legend Tanya Tucker makes a triumphant return to the ACL stage, for the first time in nearly four decades, performing career classics and new gems. The Texas native became a star in 1972 at age thirteen with her first single “Delta Dawn,” and made her ACL debut in Season 11 in 1986; she now returns a 2023 Country Music Hall of Fame inductee. Tucker has been riding a late career highpoint with an acclaimed pair of recent releases, 2019’s comeback album While I’m Livin’, which earned the singer her first-ever career Grammy wins, and latest, Sweet Western Sound, alongside The Return of Tanya Tucker, a 2022 documentary that chronicles her remarkable career resurgence. She opens an irresistible set accompanied by her six-piece band, with a pair of highlights from While I’m Livin’, the 2020 Grammy-winning Best Country Album, produced by music luminaries (and fans) Brandi Carlile and Shooter Jennings. “I got a little story about my kind of luck,” sings the husky-voiced Tucker on rowdy set opener “Hard Luck.” “Lord knows I’m a hard luck girl”; she commands the stage on fan-favorite “Bring My Flowers Now,” a poignant meditation on mortality that scored a 2020 Grammy Award for Best Country Song. Tucker thrills with gems from 2023’s Sweet Western Sound, welcoming her boyfriend and fellow country singer Craig Dillingham onstage for harmonies on a song he originally penned, “When the Rodeo Is Over (Where Does the Cowboy Go?).” The irrepressible icon entertains the crowd with salty humor and the stories behind the songs. “It’s never too late to do the right thing,” smiles Tucker. “I’m a good example of that,” as she reaches back for her early ‘90s hit “It’s A Little Too Late.” The legend turns in a legendary performance, closing out the sparkling set with a smile as wide as Texas as she delivers her immortal country anthem “Texas (When I Die),” spotlighting each bandmember with great appreciation, as the ecstatic audience erupts in a crowd sing-along and standing ovation.
Recently named one of Rolling Stone’s “Future 25,” and the only country artist to make the list, Brittney Spencer is earning acclaim for her standout ability to mold life, truth, and wild imagination into open-hearted songwriting. “Her unerring honesty and empathy are a big part of what makes her music so appealing,” raves Rolling Stone. The rising star makes her ACL debut with selections from her 2024 debut My Stupid Life and dazzles with a five-song set that showcases her freewheelin’ country. “I moved to Nashville ten years ago,” the Baltimore native tells the crowd. “I love country music so, so much.” She pays tribute to her inspirations—Reba, Aretha, Dolly, Latifah, Maren, Whitney and more—on “Bigger Than the Song,” and delivers a knockout vocal performance on the slowburn “My First Rodeo.” Spencer thrills the crowd with a song especially for the occasion, the Willie Nelson signature “On the Road Again,” made all the sweeter in the house that Willie built.
“I can’t think of a better pairing that highlights the contrasts and continuity of Country music today than Tanya Tucker and Brittney Spencer,” said ACL executive producer Terry Lickona. “Both have deep Country roots but an independent DIY flair that sets them apart from the mainstream. That’s what I love about good Country music.”
Tanya Tucker setlist:
Bring My Flowers Now
When the Rodeo Is Over (Where Does the Cowboy Go?)
It’s A Little Too Late
Texas (When I Die)
Brittney Spencer setlist:
Bigger Than the Song
My First Rodeo
I Got Time
On the Road Again
Season 49 Broadcast Schedule (Second Half):
January 13 Austin City Limits 9th Annual Hall of Fame Honors John Prine
January 20 Robert Glasper | DOMi and JD BECK
January 27 Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo
February 3 Tanya Tucker | Brittney Spencer
February 10 Noah Kahan | Flor de Toloache
February 17 Alanis Morissette
February 24 Bonnie Raitt
March 2 Austin City Limits 9th Annual Hall of Fame Honors Trisha Yearwood
Watch new episodes live, stream online, or download the PBS App. Viewers can visit acltv.com for news regarding upcoming Season 50 tapings, live streams and episode schedules or by following ACL on Facebook, Twitter, IG and TikTok. Fans can also browse the ACL YouTube channel for exclusive songs, behind-the-scenes videos and full-length artist interviews.
Austin City Limits
Austin City Limits (ACL) offers viewers unparalleled access to featured acts in an intimate setting that provides a platform for artists to deliver inspired, memorable, full-length performances. Now in its 49th Season, the program is taped live before a concert audience from The Moody Theater in downtown Austin. Austin City Limits is the longest-running music series in television history and remains the only TV series to ever be awarded the National Medal of Arts. Since its inception, the groundbreaking music series has become an institution that’s helped secure Austin’s reputation as the Live Music Capital of the World. The historic Austin PBS Studio 6A, home to 36 years of ACL concerts, has been designated an official Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Landmark. In 2011, ACL moved to the new venue ACL Live at The Moody Theater in downtown Austin. ACL received a rare institutional Peabody Award for excellence and outstanding achievement in 2012. ACL celebrates 50 years as an American music institution in 2024.
Austin City Limits is produced by Austin PBS and funding is provided in part by Dell Technologies, the Austin Convention Center Department, Cirrus Logic and AXS Ticketing. Additional funding is provided by the Friends of Austin City Limits. Learn more about Austin City Limits, programming and history at acltv.com.