Maren Morris leads with the most nominees for the 53rd CMA Awards, but that’s not enough to nominate her for Entertainer of the Year. Leading with six nominations off the success of her album “Girl,” it’s safe to say Morris is making waves in country music. Another female artist stripped from the title of Entertainer of the Year is Kacey Musgraves, who’s sold out tours and numerous Grammy Awards were also overlooked by the CMA Awards when deciding on the EOTY nominees.
Categories such as Vocal Group of the Year and Vocal duo of the Year have proven to be similar each year, with only the Zac Brown Band replacing Lanco and Brooks & Dunn taking the nominee from Sugarland this year. While numerous all female groups and duos have entered into the scene, Maddie and Tae remain the only female pair nominated.
Despite our grimaces, we appreciate the Country Music Association for their recognition of Carrie Underwood as a nominee for Entertainer of the Year and for recognizing the works of Maren Morris, Kacey Musgraves, Maddie and Tae, Carly Pearce, Miranda Lambert, and Ashley McBryde in other ways. The CMA Awards will be hosted by Carrie Underwood, Reba McEntire and Dolly Parton on November 13th on ABC.
Full list of nominees:
ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
SINGLE OF THE YEAR
(Award goes to Artist, Producer(s), and Mix Engineer)
“Burning Man” – Dierks Bentley Ft. Brothers Osborne
Producers: Ross Copperman, Jon Randall, Arturo Buenahora Jr.
Mix Engineer: F. Reid Shippen
“GIRL” – Maren Morris
Producer: Greg Kurstin
Mix Engineer: Greg Kurstin
“God’s Country” – Blake Shelton
Producer: Scott Hendricks
Mix Engineer: Justin Niebank
“Millionaire” – Chris Stapleton
Producers: Dave Cobb, Chris Stapleton
Mix Engineer: Vance Powell
“Speechless” – Dan + Shay
Producers: Dan Smyers, Scott Hendricks
Mix Engineer: Jeff Juliano
ALBUM OF THE YEAR
(Award goes to Artist and Producers)
“Center Point Road” – Thomas Rhett Producers: Dann Huff, Jesse Frasure, Thomas Rhett, Julian Bunetta, The Stereotypes, Cleve Wilson
“Cry Pretty” – Carrie Underwood Producers: David Garcia, Jim Jonsin, Carrie Underwood
“Dan + Shay” – Dan + Shay Producers: Dan Smyers, Scott Hendricks
“Desperate Man” – Eric Church Producers: Jay Joyce, Arturo Buenahora Jr.
“GIRL” – Maren Morris Producers: busbee, Maren Morris, Greg Kurstin
SONG OF THE YEAR
(Award goes to songwriters)
Songwriters: Luke Combs, Wyatt B. Durrette III, Robert Williford
Songwriters: Maren Morris, Sarah Aarons, Greg Kurstin
Songwriters: Devin Dawson, Jordan Schmidt, Michael Hardy
Songwriters: Natalie Hemby, Shane McAnally, Kacey Musgraves
Songwriters: Dan Smyers, Nicolle Galyon, Jordan Reynolds
FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
Little Big Town
Zac Brown Band
VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
Brooks & Dunn
Dan + Shay
Florida Georgia Line
Maddie & Tae
MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR
Jenee Fleenor, Fiddle
Paul Franklin, Steel Guitar
Mac McAnally, Guitar
Ilya Toshinsky, Banjo/Guitar
Derek Wells, Guitar
MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
(Award goes to Artist(s) and Director)
“Burning Man” – Dierks Bentley Ft. Brothers Osborne
Director: Wes Edwards
“GIRL” – Maren Morris
Director: Dave Meyers
“God’s Country” – Blake Shelton
Director: Sophie Muller
“Rainbow” – Kacey Musgraves
Director: Hannah Lux Davis
“Some Of It” – Eric Church
Director: Reid Long
NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR
MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR
Award goes to Artists and Producer(s)
“All My Favorite People” – Maren Morris (ft. Brothers Osborne), Producers: Maren Morris, busbee
“Brand New Man” – Brooks & Dunn (with Luke Combs), Producer: Dann Huff
“Dive Bar” – Garth Brooks and Blake Shelton, Producer: Garth Brooks
“Old Town Road (Remix)” – Lil Nas X (feat. Billy Ray Cyrus), Producers: YoungKio, Michael Trent Reznor, Atticus Matthew Ross
“What Happens In A Small Town” – Brantley Gilbert and Lindsay Ell, Producer: Dann Huff
Recent Belmont graduate Karissa Ella is making a name for herself in Nashville after the release of her EP “Blossom.” Growing up in Canton, Ohio she took voice lessons and participated in musicals. Wanting to be in the heart of it all, Karissa made the move to Nashville for college. Learning both sides of the business, she feels prepared to set out as an independent artist.
Despite the long road, Karissa realized she didn’t want to live with any what ifs and learned to be vulnerable. Her songs are relatable and are stories of her own experiences. “Blossom” demonstrates the various emotions which come with pursuing a career in music. On the EP is the track “More Like Her,” which was co-written with Caroline Marquard. About wishing you were a kid again and an ode to her hometown, “More Like Her” has a special place in Karissa heart. Now off performing, Karissa will have shows in Nashville and Ohio this year and hopes to set off to further places.
For now, listen to Karissa’s music on all streaming platforms and follow her on social media at @KarissaEllaMusic or on her website at karissaella.com.
Growing up in a musical household, Jaclyn Kenyon would perform for her family to share their love for music. Learning how to play the piano and having written her first song at the age of 8, Jaclyn was only twelve years old when she decided to pursue music professionally. Jaclyn got her start performing at the Honey Jam.
Recently Jaclyn finished her first record in Nashville to be released soon. Featured on the record is her song, “Do You Know Him?” Allowing herself to be vulnerable, the song was added last. The record itself includes a variety of stories about growing up. Now booking shows in Nashville and Canada to promote the album, Jaclyn is excited to see how fans will react to her music.
Listen to Jaclyn’s music on all streaming platforms now.
Despite winning numerous Grammy awards including the award for Album of the Year in 2019, Kacey Musgraves is often kept from radio streaming and major country music festivals. In fact, Musgraves has appeared more often at hip hop festivals and internationally. Her tour “Oh, What a World” was extended to reach her large audience, a sign that fans want to hear Kacey’s music.
A member of The Highwomen and the founder of the "Girls Just Wanna Weekend" a festival held in Mexico, Brandi Carlile should be a household name in country music. However, Brandi’s single “The Joke” wasn’t brought to country music radio and she’s only recently been asked to perform at award shows with Maren Morris.
Having recently released her album “E.G.O” with the support of boyfriend John Osborne of the Brothers Osborne, Lucie Silvas has grown her fanbase to reach over twenty-one thousand followers on Twitter. Now on tour with award winning artist, Chris Stapleton, Silvas is expanding her audience despite the lack of radio coverage.
The top award winning Christian artist, Lauren Daigle is currently on tour following the release of her album “Look Up Child.” Though being ignored by country music radio, Daigle’s songs are often found on Spotify’s top playlists.
Off touring in Europe after the success of her collaboration with Keith Urban, Jillian Jacqueline has received little radio coverage and less appearances at major music festivals. However the crowd at CMA Fest is an indication of Jacqueline’s popularity in country music.
Don’t miss Tailgate Fest, the country music festival in Southern California where fans are able to witness performances from the comfort of their cars. Happening from August 17-18th, Tailgate will include performances from Lindsay Ell, Raelynn, Locash, Lee Brice, Tyler Farr, Big Boi, King Calaway, Clint Black, Hardy, and Craig Campbell in addition to headliners Brantley Gilbert and Brett Eldredge. For those looking to stay cool, the festival is introducing it’s “Boots and Bikinis” experience where fans can enjoy the festivities poolside after a mimosa or bloody mary brunch. View the full brunch menu here. At night party in the pool with a large menu of cocktails, a live DJ, and activities such as volleyball, beer pong, and horseshoes. If you’re willing to stay up late, surprise guests will also be performing acoustic sets complete with s’mores.
In its second year, Tailgate Fest is grateful to its founders. Started by the creators behind “Haunted Hayrides” and members of the LGBTQ+ community, Melissa Carbone and Alyson Richards developed the concept after appearing on Shark Tank where they received a deal from Mark Cuban. Now sponsored by Chevrolet, the festival will be showcasing the 2019 Silverado with a number of opportunities for fans to win prizes.
Passes are currently on sale on the Tailgate Fest website (latailgatefest.com). General admission two-day passes are currently $119 while VIP passes for the weekend are $349. VIP packages include parking in “close to the stage” reserved tailgate lots, access to VIP viewing areas at the main stage, entry to the Boots & Bikinis Pool Party, a priority line at all concessions and bars, premium bathrooms, private lounges, and early entry. Also available is the Super VIP Pass for $599. It includes all VIP amenities plus to access to a stage side swimming pool and platform, Country Club artist lounge access, exclusive private performances and meet and greet parties, bottle service, and more. RV camping upgrades are also available online for purchase.
Breakout British country singer and songwriter Sasha McVeigh released her new single "Rock Bottom.” The poignant chronicle is the first track released from her upcoming, fan-financed EP. "Sasha's latest release, 'Rock Bottom', is her strongest release to date. It's a song I'm sure you will love," said Global Head of Country Music at Spotify, John Marks. To download
Recorded in Nashville and produced by the GRAMMY® award-winning, Mark Lambert (Leon Russell, Elton John, Kacey Musgraves, Dolly Parton, Merle Haggard), "Rock Bottom" is paradoxically a song of great triumph and a testament to using life's painful experiences as building blocks for growth. The UK-bred musician captures not only her vulnerability, but her confidence and strength in this lyrical tale. "'Rock Bottom' isn't strictly a song about heartbreak," states McVeigh, "It's about understanding that sometimes you have to hit rock bottom in life to realize what you have and that it's those moments of utter despair that can shape us into the people we are. We all hit rock bottom, it's nothing to be ashamed of, if anything it's empowering to know you survived it.”
Sasha McVeigh found her roots in country early on composing her first song at the tender age of twelve. Originally from the countryside of Hereford, United Kingdom, McVeigh's drive, savvy and talent eventually launched her on a trajectory that would land her in Music City six years later. Drawing from country, pop and R&B influences such as Shania Twain, Dolly Parton, Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, Adele and Amy Winehouse, Sasha McVeigh has performed on stages across the globe earning her spot-on BBC radio, performing on "Under The Apple Tree" hosted by Bob Harris, embarking on a full U.S. tour and being hailed as UK Country Music Award's "Female Vocalist of the Year." Get an inside look at the woman soon to be taking over the country music scene. For more information on Sasha McVeigh and her new single "Rock Bottom" click here.
I am currently a student at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles as a marketing major. Upon realizing that I wanted to change the way people perceive country music and to help women have a voice, I began The Women of Country in 2015 promoting new female artists and sharing their stories with the world. You can find me via Instagram @nicolemmarchesi or contact me via email at email@example.com