The Biggest Night In Country Music, The 56th Annual CMA Awards, took place on Thursday, November 10th at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.
Luke Combs, Lainey Wilson and Cody Johnson walked away as the biggest winners on the night, winning 2 awards each.
Combs secured the night’s highest honour for the second year in a row, retaining his Entertainer of the Year title against Miranda Lambert, Chris Stapleton, Carrie Underwood and Morgan Wallen.
Entering the awards as the most nominated artist of the evening, Wilson won her first two CMAs ever, taking both New Artist of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year in tough categories. She joins Alison Krauss and Carrie Underwood as only the third artist to win both the Female Vocalist and New Artist awards in a single year.
Chris Stapleton has become the fifth most-awarded artist in CMA Awards history with last night's Male Vocalist of the Year win, now only trailing Brooks & Dunn, Vince Gill, Alan Jackson and George Strait. He has also now won more Male Vocalist of the Year Awards than any other artist.
Jackson himself was celebrated with thunderous applause by the crowd in attendance, as he took to the stage to accept his Lifetime Achievement Award and to perform his classic hit 'Don't Rock The Jukebox'. Dierks Bentley, Jon Pardi, Lainey Wilson and Carrie Underwood also honoured Jackson with performances of some of his greatest hits, including 'Remember When', 'Chattahoochee', 'Drive (For Daddy Gene)' and 'Chasin’ That Neon Rainbow'.
The 56th Annual CMA Awards were hosted by Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on Wednesday, November 10th on ABC.
The night was filled with an array of special performances. Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert and Reba McEntire kicked off the ceremony with an all-star tribute to the one and only Loretta Lynn, who passed away last month aged 90.
Chris Stapleton and Patty Loveless join together for a beautiful duet of the Darrell Scott song, 'You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive'. Scott himself joined the pair on Dobro for the special performance.
Kelsea Ballerini, Kelly Clarkson and Carly Pearce joined forces once again to deliver a ridiculously fun rendition of their instant hit 'YOU'RE DRUNK, GO HOME'. While The War and Treaty and Brothers Osborne tore into The Rolling Stones' 'It's Only Rock N Roll (But I Like It).
THE 56th ANNUAL CMA AWARDS – WINNERS (by ballot category order):
ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
LUKE COMBS (WINNER)
SINGLE OF THE YEAR
‘Buy Dirt’ – Jordan Davis featuring Luke Bryan
Producer: Paul DiGiovanni
Mix Engineer: Jim Cooley
‘half of my hometown’ – Kelsea Ballerini (feat. Kenny Chesney)
Producers: Kelsea Ballerini, Ross Copperman, Jimmy Robbins
Mix Engineer: Dan Grech-Marguerat
‘Never Wanted To Be That Girl’ – Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde
Producers: Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
Mix Engineer: Ryan Gore
‘Til You Can't’ – Cody Johnson (WINNER)
Producer: Trent Willmon
Mix Engineer: Jack Clarke
‘You Should Probably Leave’ – Chris Stapleton
Producers: Dave Cobb, Chris Stapleton
Mix Engineer: Vance Powell
ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Growin' Up – Luke Combs (WINNER)
Producers: Luke Combs, Chip Matthews, Jonathan Singleton
Mix Engineers: Jim Cooley, Chip Matthews
Humble Quest – Maren Morris
Producer: Greg Kurstin
Mix Engineer: Serban Ghenea
Palomino – Miranda Lambert
Producers: Luke Dick, Miranda Lambert, Jon Randall, Mikey Reaves
Mix Engineer: Jason Lehning
Sayin' What I'm Thinkin' – Lainey Wilson
Producer: Jay Joyce
Mix Engineer: F. Reid Shippen
Time, Tequila & Therapy – Old Dominion
Producers: Shane McAnally, Old Dominion
Mix Engineer: Justin Niebank
SONG OF THE YEAR
‘Buy Dirt’ - Songwriters: Jacob Davis, Jordan Davis, Josh Jenkins, Matt Jenkins (WINNER)
‘Never Wanted To Be That Girl’ - Songwriters: Shane McAnally, Ashley McBryde, Carly Pearce
‘Sand In My Boots’ - Songwriters: Ashley Gorley, Michael Hardy, Josh Osborne
‘Things A Man Oughta Know’ - Songwriters: Jason Nix, Jonathan Singleton, Lainey Wilson
‘You Should Probably Leave’ - Songwriters: Chris DuBois, Ashley Gorley, Chris Stapleton
FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
LAINEY WILSON (WINNER)
MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
CHRIS STAPLETON (WINNER)
VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
Little Big Town
OLD DOMINION (WINNERS)
Zac Brown Band
VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
Brooks & Dunn
BROTHERS OSBORNE (WINNERS)
Dan + Shay
Maddie & Tae
MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR
‘Beers On Me’ – Dierks Bentley with BRELAND & HARDY
Producers: Dierks Bentley, Ross Copperman
‘If I Didn't Love You’ – Jason Aldean & Carrie Underwood
Producer: Michael Knox
‘Longneck Way To Go’ – Midland (featuring Jon Pardi)
Producers: Dann Huff, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
‘Never Say Never’ – Cole Swindell (with Lainey Wilson)
Producer: Zach Crowell
‘Never Wanted To Be That Girl’ – Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde (WINNERS)
Producers: Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR
Jenee Fleenor, Fiddle (WINNER)
Paul Franklin, Steel guitar
Brent Mason, Guitar
Ilya Toshinskiy, Banjo
Derek Wells, Guitar
MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
‘I Bet You Think About Me’ (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault) – Taylor Swift (featuring Chris Stapleton) - Director: Blake Lively
‘Longneck Way To Go’ – Midland (featuring Jon Pardi) - Director: Harper Smith
‘Never Say Never’ – Cole Swindell (with Lainey Wilson) - Director: Michael Monaco
‘Never Wanted To Be That Girl’ – Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde - Director: Alexa Campbell
‘'Til You Can't’ – Cody Johnson - Director: Dustin Haney (WINNER)
NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR
LAINEY WILSON (WINNER)
Celebrating the biggest and best names in country music, the ceremony was presented by two-time CMA Entertainer of the Year Luke Bryan and NFL Hall of Famer and two-time MVP Peyton Manning.
Revealing the news that he would be hosting on the 1st August special edition of Live With Kelly & Ryan, Bryan said; "Being a part of such a historical night that honors my peers and Country Music is such a privilege".
"When I was asked if Peyton Manning was someone I would consider co-hosting with", he continues, "I didn’t hesitate. We have become great friends through the years and what he brings to the table is gonna make it even more of a blast. I know he’s been to the CMA Awards before, but he’s never been with me. Hey Peyton, I hope you’re ready for the night of your life!"
Performing on the night were a who's who of country's biggest names, including Morgan Wallen, Carrie Underwood, Kelsea Ballerini, Luke Bryan, Kelly Clarkson, HARDY, Marcus King, Miranda Lambert, Carly Pearce, Lainey Wilson, Jimmie Allen and Zac Brown Band.
Furthermore, Luke Combs, Brandy Clark, Caylee Hammack, Cody Johnson, Elle King, Ashley McBryde, Reba McEntire, Katy Perry, Pillbox Patti, Cole Swindell, The Black Keys and Thomas Rhett all performed at the ceremony.
Peyton Manning was similarly enthusiastic about co-hosting, saying; “I cannot wait to head to Nashville and take the CMA Awards stage alongside my friend Luke Bryan,” says Manning. “I am such a huge fan of Country Music, so to have the chance to stand among so many incredibly talented artists is an absolute honor.”
Bryan returned for a second consecutive year to host the CMA Awards, while Manning is a first-time host.
“Country Music’s Biggest Night will without a doubt live up to its expectation this year,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer. “During an evening when we celebrate the best of the best in Country Music, we are thrilled to have two award-winning hosts at the helm! I cannot wait to see what Luke and Peyton have up their sleeves, which I’m sure will be hilariously unpredictable and playfully energetic, just like the two of them.”
For full coverage of the 56th annual Country Music Association Awards, see below: