Joe Nichols is headed Down Under, where he'll headline the first night of the CMC Rocks the Hunter music festival March 5. Country music is taking over the Hope Estate in Australia's wine country, known as the Hunter Valley in New South Wales, with Alan Jackson closing out the second night of the festival.

Also along for the ride are Jack Ingram, Emerson Drive, Dean Brody, Buxton Hughes (which includes Aussie Jedd Hughes) and New South Wales natives, the McClymonts.

"I had a great time when I toured Australia a couple of years ago," Joe says. "The people there are fantastic, so warm and friendly, and they love country music. I can't wait to go back."

Miranda Lambert was also originally on the bill, but had to bow out, owing to illness. "I was very much looking forward to Australia with Alan Jackson and performing for all the music lovers Down Under," Miranda said in a statement posted on her website. Australian country star John Williamson has filled her slot.

Alan Jackson's stop is part of his first Aussie tour, which he's highly anticipating. "I've always heard that it's just beautiful down there," Alan says. 'Everyone I know that's been has loved it. [They] said the people down there are really nice and welcome people from the U.S. so generously. I know I've got a lot of fans down there and I know they like my kind of music -- so I think it'll be a fun trip!"

Alan kicks off his six-day run in Melbourne, Australia Friday, March 4. Details here.

Joe will return to Australia for his third trip in May for a multi-city tour, his first since 2009. Get a full list of his tour dates here.

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