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The Producers of ‘Nashville’ Used Sara Evans as Inspiration for Rayna Jaymes

When 'Nashville' was in the development stages, the producers called up Sara Evans for advice on shaping the character of Rayna Jaymes.

Written by Kelly Brickey
The Producers of ‘Nashville’ Used Sara Evans as Inspiration for Rayna Jaymes
Sara Evans; Photo by Kristin Barlowe; Connie Britton as Rayna Jaymes; ABC/Mark Levine

Creating the role of Rayna Jaymes may sound like a simple character to make a backstory for, but the producers of Nashville wanted to go deeper than just a surface-level country star persona. They looked immediately to someone who juggles the titles of mom and famous singer when they called up Sara Evans for advice.

Although many artists make the balance of family and career look easy, Evans told producers the nitty-gritty of what truly happens behind-the-scenes when someone in the music industry needs to be around their kids and make that connection work. She emphasized how critical it is for moms to be there for their kids while also working hard toward a career they love.

“The writers called and asked if I wanted to come up and spend a couple hours consulting them,” Evans said during an interview with CMT recently. “’What’s it like to be a real-life Rayna Jaymes?’ And it was so fun because I just started talking and telling them the truth behind being a mom and being on the road.”

Evans became a fan of the series once episodes began airing, and really found pieces of herself within Jaymes’ makeup. From the fight for female equality within country music to finding quality time at home with the kids, the singer knew that the producers did it right in the end with the idea of Jaymes.

“I related to her completely being a country music star and then struggling with what’s happening in country music and the bro-country movement and just everything that it entails,” Evans admitted honestly.

The last episodes of Nashville will come back to television on Thursday, June 7, on CMT.