NASHVILLE (AP) – Garth Brooks says every musician in the room can agree that it’s the band and crew who are the most important people on the road. Brooks won entertainer of the year for the sixth time at the Country Music Association Awards.
Miranda Lambert, in collecting female vocalist of the year for the seventh time, says she’s never felt more of a family with country music than this year and “country music is winning right now.”
Male vocalist of the year Chris Stapleton says he owes his career to every one of the other guys nominated in that category. Karen Fairchild of Little Big Town, the vocal group of the year, says country musicians have to take care of each other, because they’re all about harmony.
KEITH URBAN UNVEILS NEW SONG
Keith Urban unveiled a new song at the Country Music Association Awards that he says was inspired by the Hollywood sexual harassment scandal.
The song “Female” includes lyrics in its second verse about someone laughing at a woman who has been harassed “just cause she was wearing a skirt” and questioning, “Now is that how it works?”
But it also included various stereotypes some women will likely resent, such as “baby girl” and “woman child.”
Urban asks in the song about how it feels to hear such phrases as “hits like a girl” and whether the biblical story of Adam and Eve makes women feel second best.
CMAS PAY TRIBUTE TO RECENT TRAGEDIES
The Country Music Association Awards started with a somber note that turned uplifting. Eric Church sang “Amazing Grace” a cappella, followed by Darius Rucker and Keith Urban singing “Hold My Hand.” They were soon joined by most of Nashville’s biggest stars: Lady Antebellum, Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire, Little Big Town, Brooks and Dunn, Luke Bryan, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill and Thomas Rhett. Hosts Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood acknowledged the victims of recent tragedies and natural disasters and said the best way they could honor fans was to play their music loud and proud.
CMAS PAY TRIBUTE TO THEIR OWN
Glen Campbell, Don Williams and Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry each got their spotlight moments at the Country Music Awards last night. Little Big Town was accompanied by Jimmy Webb for a performance of “Wichita Lineman” in honor of Campbell, who died in August. Brothers Osborne performed “Tulsa Time” for Williams, who died in September. Dierks (DURKS) Bentley and Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts performed “My Town” for Gentry, who died in September. They were joined by surprise guest Eddie Montgomery. Carrie Underwood sang the hymn “Softly and Tenderly Jesus is Calling” for an “in memoriam” segment while the audience held candles. It ended with photos of the victims of the shootings at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas on Oct. 1.
BRAD AND CARRIE SAY THEY CAN’T GET POLITICAL
Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood were not about to let a recent controversy with the media and the Country Music Association pass by without poking fun at it at the CMA Awards. The CMA had told media covering the show they could not ask musicians political questions, a decision that was reversed after an uproar from reporters and artists. Paisley and Underwood joked about the parody songs they could not do under the rules, like “Hold Me Closer, Bernie Sanders” and “Stand By Your Manafort.” They rewrote one of Underwood’s hits to be about President Donald Trump, “Before He Tweets.”
SOME OF THE LIGHTER MOMENTS
Karen Fairchild of Little Big Town says she’s grateful bandmate Phillip Sweet checked his email. That’s because he doesn’t always do it and the one time he did, he got a song from Taylor Swift. It was “Better Man.” Last night it won song of the year at the Country Music Association Awards. TJ Osborne of Brothers Osborne says they get asked what it’s like to win a CMA Award. His answer is that for one thing, they made a lot more money since they won. Jon Pardi, winner of new artist of the year, says he wanted to his thank his early fans: friends and family who watched him perform in backyards and in dive bars while he was in high school.
CMAS: THE WINNERS LIST
Here’s the complete list of winners from the Country Music Association Awards:
Entertainer of the Year – Garth Brooks.
Female vocalist of the year – Miranda Lambert.
Male vocalist of the year – Chris Stapleton.
Album of the Year – “From A Room: Volume 1,” Chris Stapleton.
Song of the Year- “Better Man,” Taylor Swift.
Single of the Year – “Blue Ain’t Your Color,” Keith Urban
Vocal group of the year – Little Big Town.
Vocal duo of the year – Brothers Osborne.
New artist of the year – Jon Pardi.
Musical event of the Year – “Funny How Time Slips Away,” Glen Campbell with Willie Nelson
Music video of the Year – “It Ain’t My Fault,” Brothers Osborne.
Musician of the Year – Mac McAnally (guitar).