|Season Four, Episode 1-21|
|First Aired||September 23, 2015|
The season deals with Rayna's continuous attempts to get Highway 65 off the ground by signing both former rocker Markus Keen and Layla Grant. Meanwhile, Juliette's downward spiral continues through wild partying, leading to Avery seeking a divorce. Everything culminates in the death of Jeff Fordham after he attempts to save Juliette from committing suicide. She eventually realizes she needs help and checks into a rehab clinic. Avery refuses to allow her to see their daughter but soon relents.
Rayna and Deacon finally see their wedding day come and are married in spite of him getting cold feet and Maddie worrying about his violent behavior. Maddie's rebellious behavior gets out of hand when the daughter of Deacon's sponsor, Frankie, arrives in town and attempts to turn her against her parents. Maddie seeks emancipation and later gets an offer to sign with a label in New York.
After leaving town following Jeff's funeral, Layla returns to learn that his death was caused by Juliette's breakdown and she worms her way into Avery's life, leading to the two of them becoming a couple.
Gunnar and Scarlett continue as The Exes and are forced to face the truth about their relationship while Will deals with the growing hostility over his sexual orientation as he attempts to get his career off the ground with the help of Luke Wheeler.
- Connie Britton as Rayna Jaymes (21/21)
- Hayden Panettiere as Juliette Barnes (15/21)
- Clare Bowen as Scarlett O'Connor (21/21)
- Charles Esten as Deacon Claybourne (21/21)
- Jonathan Jackson as Avery Barkley (21/21)
- Sam Palladio as Gunnar Scott (21/21)
- Chris Carmack as Will Lexington (21/21)
- Lennon Stella as Maddie Conrad (16/21)
- Maisy Stella as Daphne Conrad (16/21)
- Will Chase as Luke Wheeler (21/21)
- Aubrey Peeples as Layla Grant (21/21)
- Eric Close as Teddy Conrad (2/21)
- Oliver Hudson as Jeff Fordham (4/21)
- Dana Wheeler-Nicholson as Beverly O'Connor (5/21)
- Chaley Rose as Zoey Dalton (1/21)
- Jessy Schram as Cash Gray (7/21)
- Riley Smith as Markus Keen (4/21)
- Steven Tyler as Himself (1/21)
- Derek Hough as Noah West (3/21)
- Cynthia McWilliams as Gabriella Manning (7/21)
- Scott Reeves as Noel Laughlin (10/21)
- Michael Lowry as Kenneth Devine (8/21)
- Keean Johnson as Colt Wheeler (13/21)
- Kyle Dean Massey as Kevin Bicks (6/21)
- Scout Taylor-Compton as Erin (7/21)
|Image||Title||Original Airdate|| U.S. Viewers|
|1. "Can't Let Go"||September 23, 2015||4.91|
|Plot: With Juliette's starring role in the Patsy Cline biopic, she is at an all-time career high, but is hitting a personal low. Meanwhile Avery, separated from Juliette, tends to baby Cadence at his parents' home in Texas. Rayna, along with her family and friends, grapple with the chilling aftermath of Deacon's liver transplant.|
|2. "'Til the Pain Outwears the Shame"||September 30, 2015||4.72|
Plot: Juliette breaks down during an appearance on "Live with Kelly and Michael," prompting Avery's concern. But when she continues her pattern of irrational and volatile behavior, she leaves Avery with a struggle of his own. Meanwhile, Rayna is determined to show the world that Highway 65 is not just a vanity project and devises a plan to sign Markus Keen, one of the biggest rock artists around.
|3. "How Can I Help You Say Goodbye"||October 7, 2015||4.32|
Plot: A second aneurysm leaves Beverly brain dead and Deacon consumed with guilt, while Scarlett is forced to decide whether or not to keep Beverly on life support. Meanwhile, Juliette continues a destructive pattern of erratic behavior, pushing Avery to make the heart-wrenching decision to file for divorce.
|4. "The Slender Threads that Bind Us Here"||October 14, 2015||4.54|
Plot: Rock star Marcus Keen makes demands on Rayna as she struggles to tend to those around her. Layla and Jeff get into a lover’s quarrel. Jeff arranges for a journalist to shadow Juliette on tour, but after another emotional setback, she leans on pills and alcohol to get through her days, and Zoey returns to see Scarlett.
|5. "Stop the World (And Let Me Off)"||October 21, 2015||4.47|
Plot: Rayna pushes back on Layla’s romantic relationship with Jeff, and Markus pushes back on his producer, Avery — which does not go well. Maddie joins Colt on Luke’s tour, giving the teens opportunities for more freedom than Maddie can handle. She turns to Juliette for advice and shocks Luke with the results. Meanwhile, Deacon and Scarlett head to Natchez despite their falling-out, and Gunnar enlists Kevin and Will’s help as “wingmen” in an effort to pick up a new woman.
|6. "Please Help Me, I'm Fallin'"||October 28, 2015||4.18|
Plot: Juliette gets into a brawl with a fan that goes viral, but Jeff sees damage control as an opening for his own career. Maddie is grounded and misses Colt who is on tour with his dad. Markus butts heads with Rayna over his sound, and the two consider whether they can continue working together.
|7. "Can't Get Used to Losing You"||November 11, 2015||4.56|
Plot: Rayna’s concerns about Deacon’s business venture with an old friend from AA, Frankie, threaten to drive a wedge between the lovebirds. Luke’s personal integrity and his relationship with Colt are on the line in the wake of recent events.
|8. "Unguarded Moments"||November 18, 2015||4.44|
Plot: Rayna wants to turn down Sony's contract offer for Maddie to be a solo artist and finds her family life distracting her from her work with Markus. Luke is desperate to regain Colt's trust; Gunnar's girlfriend, Erin, causes issues on tour with Scarlett and Avery scrambles to make money doing insipid jingles.
|9. "Three's a Crowd"||December 2, 2015||4.17|
|Plot: Rayna’s new artist, Markus Keen, causes trouble for her when he scraps a song on his new album one week before its release. Is Deacon part of the solution or the problem? Luke attempts to reconcile with Colt, and Scarlett surprises Caleb back in Nashville when she gets time off on her tour.|
|10. "We've Got Nothing But Love to Prove"||December 9, 2015||4.14|
Plot: Markus prepares for a concert on "Good Morning America," but then he doesn't feel ready to perform. Meanwhile, Luke faces obstacles with the launch of his brand and his relationship with Colt; and the distance between Rayna and Deacon widens.
|11. "Forever and for Always"||March 16, 2016||4.22|
Plot: When Rayna and Deacon are ambushed by paparazzi after their intimate rehearsal dinner, Deacon’s hot-headed reaction casts a pall on the plans and forces a change of venue. Meanwhile, wedding guest Avery is struggling to keep up with the lies Juliette is forcing him to message to press in her absence.
|12. "How Does It Feel to Be Free"||March 23, 2016||4.10|
Plot: A familiar face is back on the Nashville music scene when Luke recruits his old friend Riff Bell to join him on tour. While the duo excitedly starts planning Riff’s return to the stage, newcomer Vita arrives at The Beverly, but while she convinces Deacon and Rayna she deserves a shot, Frankie has his doubts. In the end, more questions than answers remain.
|13. "If I Could Do It All Again"||March 30, 2016||3.87|
Plot: Luke and Riff are excitedly planning their upcoming tour, but Luke soon realizes he may have moved too quickly in the decision to have Riff on the road again. Meanwhile, Deacon and Frankie clash about Vita, with Frankie making a damaging decision that could change everything.
|14. "What I Cannot Change"||April 6, 2016||4.04|
Plot: A familiar face - Juliette Barnes - finally returns to Nashville after receiving treatment for postpartum depression and finds herself at a critical crossroads upon her homecoming. Layla, weeks away from launching her first album, courts country-music superstar Autumn Chase in order to secure an opening slot on her tour. Rayna, while shepherding Layla, is motivated to take up a worthy cause. Elsewhere, Will decides to produce his own record, and Colt presents Luke with a difficult proposition.
|15. "When There's a Fire in Your Heart"||April 13, 2016||4.12|
Plot: The Exes find navigating their newfound fame tricky business when they go out on the road with Autumn Chase. Meanwhile, back in Nashville, Maddie continues to grow closer with Cash, causing tension with Deacon as he questions her motives and interest in his daughter. Juliette misses her manager, Glenn, and devises a plan to get him back while Will finds himself working with Kevin again.
|16. "Didn't Expect It to Go Down This Way"||April 20, 2016||3.70|
Plot: Rayna and Deacon are distraught when Maddie runs away from home, and Juliette is threatened by Avery’s connection to Layla. Luke is forced to find a new artist when Riff disappears, and Autumn drives a wedge between Gunnar and Scarlett.
|17. "Baby Come Home"||April 27, 2016||3.77|
Plot: Rayna and Deacon try everything they can think of to reunite with Maddie and avoid court, even involving Teddy from jail. Juliette tries to rekindle her relationship with Avery, and her success on tour stokes Layla's jealousy, personally and professionally. Luke Wheeler leverages his own appearance on "Good Morning America" with Robin Roberts to try to jump start Will Lexington's career.
|18. "The Trouble with the Truth"||May 4, 2016||3.89|
Plot: Rayna and Deacon fight to regain the trust of a determined Maddie as she seeks independence, but their efforts are undermined by someone they thought was an ally. Scarlett and Gunnar disagree on the history of their musical partnership during a press interview. Luke tries to do the right thing for an artist he admires, but it ends up backfiring.
|19. "After You've Gone"||May 11, 2016||3.94|
Plot: Rayna makes a last-ditch effort to protect her oldest daughter from the perils that befall young artists. Juliette reunites with her “Shenandoah Girl” co-star Noah West on the Oscar campaign trail, where she meets Kesha. Elsewhere, Scarlett grows wary of Gunnar’s budding friendship with Autumn Chase; Layla fears falling into obscurity before her career even takes off; and Will suffers a devastating loss.
|20. "It's Sure Gonna Hurt"||May 18, 2016||3.72|
Plot: After nearly two decades, Rayna and Deacon face the facts of their storied and often tempestuous relationship. Scarlett makes a startling self-discovery in between tour dates while Gunnar performs with one of his idols, rock-music legend Sir Elton John, who guest stars as himself. Luke stops by “The View” to trumpet a worthy cause—before a family emergency pulls his focus. Elsewhere, Juliette struggles to make a connection, and Layla launches her album at The Bluebird.
|21. "Maybe You'll Appreciate Me Someday"||May 25, 2016||4.19|
Plot: Rayna resorts to drastic measures when she learns that Maddie has crossed paths with a duplicitous figure from her past. Juliette must choose how to publicly reckon with the truth of Jeff Fordham’s death—a decision that directly affects Layla. Scarlett and Gunnar consider parting ways as bandmates, and Will finally decides to do what he should have done long ago—step up as the leader of a cause and a community.
|Episode||Directed by||Written by|
|"Can't Let Go"||Callie Khouri||Meredith Lavender & Marcie Ulin|
|"'Til the Pain Outwears the Shame"||Jean de Segonzac||David Gould|
|"How Can I Help You Say Goodbye"||Stephen Cragg||Debra Fordham|
|"The Slender Threads that Bind Us Here"||Joanna Kerns||Monica Macer|
|"Stop the World (And Let Me Off)"||Jan Eliasberg||Meredith Lavender & Marcie Ulin|
|"Please Help Me, I'm Fallin'"||Callie Khouri||Taylor Hamra|
|"Can't Get Used to Losing You"||Eric Close||Dana Greenblatt|
|"Unguarded Moments"||Ron Underwood||Paul Keables|
|"Three's a Crowd"||Mike Listo||Geoffrey Nauffts|
|"We've Got Nothing But Love to Prove"||Arlene Sandford||Debra Fordham|
|"Forever and for Always"||Stephen Cragg||Monica Macer & Dana Greenblatt|
|"How Does It Feel to Be Free"||Steve Robin||Ben St. John & Mollie Bickley St. John|
|"If I Could Do It All Again"||Callie Khouri||Sibyl Gardner|
|"What I Cannot Change"||Lily Mariye||Taylor Hamra|
|"When There's a Fire in Your Heart"||Meredith Lavender & Marcie Ullin||Michael Lohmann|
|"Didn't Expect It to Go Down This Way"||Mike Listo||Paul Keables|
|"Baby Come Home"||Jet Wilkinson||David Gould|
|"The Trouble with the Truth"||Michael Lohmann||Valerie Chu|
|"After You've Gone"||Bethany Rooney||Debra Fordham|
|"It's Sure Gonna Hurt"||Mike Listo||Taylor Hamra|
|"Maybe You'll Appreciate Me Someday"||Callie Khouri||Meredith Lavender & Marcie Ullin|
Albums released in or during the Season
|See also: Season One • Season Two • Season Three • Season Four • Season Five|