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Joe Nichols will replace Craig Morgan at Jackson County Fair

Traditional country music artist Joe Nichols will be the headlining act on the opening night of the Jackson County Fair after Craig Morgan canceled because of the death of his son.

Nichols will perform at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 20, in the amphitheater. Jackson County Fair officials planned to make a formal announcement this morning.

Morgan, 51, host of "Craig Morgan All Access Outdoors" on the Outdoor Channel, canceled his July performances earlier this week after the unexpected loss of his son, Jerry Greer, 19. Greer disappeared during a boating accident Sunday on a part of the Tennessee River known as Kentucky Lake. Greer had been tubing in the water with a friend when a wave struck and the two went under. Both were wearing life jackets. Greer's friend survived, but Greer's body was found Monday.

Nichols is sandwiching a Jackson County Fair performance in between concerts in Brooklyn, Mich., on July 17 and Paso Robles, Calif., on July 21. 

The four-time Grammy nominee has had six No. 1 hits and eight Top 10 singles, including "Brokenheartsville," "Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off," "Gimmie That Girl," "The Impossible," "If Nobody Believed In You," "What's A Guy Gotta Do," "Size Matters" and "I'll Wait For You."

His most recent album, "Crickets," debuted in the Top 3 on the Billboard Country Albums Chart and generated two hits, “Yeah” and “Sunny and 75.”

Nichols is the winner of the Academy of Country Music’s Top New Male Vocalist award, the CMT Breakthrough Video of the Year award and the Horizon Award from the Country Music Association.

"We're sad" for Morgan's loss, said Buckley Cox, media director for Lanphier Associates Inc., which is handling publicity for the Jackson County Fair. "But we're excited to have such a great artist replacing him."

Ticket prices were to be announced this morning, Cox said. Those who already purchased tickets for the Morgan concert can use them on Wednesday at the Nichols performance, or get a refund through Admit One Ticketing. 

To get tickets or for more information on the fair, visit http://www.attheexpo.com.

Country music artist Joe Nichols will perform July 20 at the Jackson County Fair. Photo courtesy Jackson County Fair