BREAKING NEWS: ACM Nominations Announced

Keith Urban wasted no time over the past year, releasing the smash hit “Blue Ain’t Your Color,” from his artistically and commercially successful Ripcord project. Urban is the leading nominee at the upcoming 52nd Annual ACM Awards, which will air Sunday, April 2 from Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena, live on CBS.

Urban leads with seven nominations in five categories, including his seventh for Entertainer of the Year and 10th nod for Male Vocalist of the Year. Urban is nominated twice, as both artist and producer, in the Album of the Year category for Ripcord. He received an additional two nominations, for both artist and producer, in the Single Record of the Year category for “Blue Ain’t Your Color,” which is also nominated in the Song of the Year category.

“I’ve been a musician since I was 6 years old,” Urban said via a statement.  “I just love writing songs, making records and touring.  So for the ACMS’s to recognize Ripcord in such a big way today is humbling.  I share these nominations with everyone in my life who made it possible – and a BIG shout out to all of our fans, who came out to see us on the ripCORD tour.  Can’t wait to play for you all again soon.”

If Urban wins Entertainer of the Year, he would be eligible to receive the Academy’s prestigious Triple Crown Award, which is given to those who have won New Male/Female Vocalist of the Year, Male/Female Vocalist of the Year and Entertainer of the Year. He was previously honored with the New Male Vocalist of the Year in 2000 (presented in 2001) and Male Vocalist of the Year in 2004 and 2005 (presented in 2005 and 2006, respectively).

Other leading nominees include Miranda Lambert and Maren Morris, with six nominations each.

Reigning Female Vocalist of the Year, Lambert receives her eleventh nod for Female Vocalist of the Year. If she wins, it will be her eighth consecutive win in this category. She is the current record holder for most consecutive wins in the Female Vocalist of the Year category. Lambert earned a total of six nominations including Female Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year for The Weight of These Wings, Single Record of the Year for “Vice,” Video of the Year for “Vice,” and two nominations as both artist and songwriter in Song of the Year for “Vice.” Currently, Lambert has earned the second-highest number of awards in ACM history, with 26 awards. Brooks & Dunn continues to hold the record of most ACM Awards with 28.

First-time ACM nominee Morris is nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year, New Female Vocalist of the Year, two nominations for Album of the Year as artist and producer of Hero, and two nominations for Single Record of the Year for “My Church” as artist and producer.

Florida Georgia Line and Tim McGraw garnered five nominations apiece, while Dierks Bentley, Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton earned three nominations each.

In addition to Morris, other first-time ACM nominees this year include Lauren Alaina, with a nomination for New Female Vocalist of the Year; Kane Brown, nominated for New Male Vocalist of the Year; Chris Lane, nominated for New Male Vocalist of the Year; LOCASH, nominated for New Vocal Duo or Group of the Year; Jon Pardi, nominated for New Male Vocalist of the Year; Chris Young and Cassadee Pope, nominated for Vocal Event of the Year, “Think Of You”; and Brett Young, nominated for New Male Vocalist of the Year.

For the first time in the history of the award, a woman has been nominated in the Songwriter of the Year category (off-camera award). 2017 marks a big change in the category, with two females nominated: Hillary Lindsey and Lori McKenna. Both also received nominations as songwriters for Song of the Year nominees, for “Blue Ain’t Your Color” (Hillary Lindsey) and “Humble And Kind” (Lori McKenna). They compete against Ashley Gorley, Luke Laird, and Shane McAnally.

“Forever Country” a Country Music Association project produced by two-time ACM Award winner Shane McAnally, received two nominations. This is the first time a Country Music Association project has been nominated for an Academy of Country Music Award. It is nominated in both the Video of the Year presented category and Vocal Event of the Year category. The song is a medley of John Denver‘s “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” Willie Nelson‘s “On the Road Again,” and Dolly Parton‘s “I Will Always Love You,” recorded by the Artists of Then, Now & Forever.

Additionally, several out-of-genre artists received their first ACM Awards nominations, including Rhiannon Giddens (nominated for Song of the Year, “Kill A Word” with Eric Church), Elle King (nominated for Vocal Event of the Year, “Different For Girls” with Dierks Bentley), P!nk (nominated for Vocal Event of the Year, “Setting The World On Fire” with Kenny Chesney).

Lady Antebellum announced the nominations Thursday morning (Feb. 16) on CBS This Morning. Luke Bryan returns to co-host the awards for the fifth consecutive year, joined again by co-host Dierks Bentley for the second consecutive year.

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
Jason Aldean
Luke Bryan
Florida Georgia Line
Carrie Underwood
Keith Urban

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
Jason Aldean
Dierks Bentley
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton
Keith Urban

FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Maren Morris
Kacey Musgraves
Carrie Underwood

VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
Big & Rich
Brothers Osborne
Dan + Shay
Florida Georgia Line
Maddie & Tae

VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
Eli Young Band
Lady Antebellum
Little Big Town
Old Dominion
Rascal Flatts

NEW MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY T-MOBILE
Kane Brown
Chris Janson
Chris Lane
Jon Pardi
Brett Young

NEW FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY T-MOBILE
Lauren Alaina
Cam
Brandy Clark
Maren Morris
* four nominees only

NEW VOCAL DUO OR GROUP OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY T-MOBILE
A Thousand Horses
Brothers Osborne
Dan + Shay
LOCASH
Maddie & Tae

ALBUM OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
Black – Dierks Bentley
Producers: Ross Copperman, Arturo Buenahora Jr.; Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

Dig Your Roots – Florida Georgia Line
Producer: Joey Moi; Record Label: Big Machine Label Group

HERO – Maren Morris
Producers: busbee, Brad Hill, Maren Morris; Record Label: Columbia Nashville

Ripcord – Keith Urban
Producers: Jeff Bhasker, busbee, Nathan Chapman, Nitzan Kaikov, Dann Huff, Tyler Johnson, Johnny Price, Nile Rodgers, Keith Urban, Greg Wells; Record Labels: Hit Red Records, Capitol Records Nashville

The Weight of These Wings – Miranda Lambert
Producers: Frank Liddell, Eric Masse, Glenn Worf; Record Labels: RCA Nashville, Vanner Records

SINGLE RECORD OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
“Blue Ain’t Your Color”-Keith Urban
Producers: Dann Huff, Keith Urban; Record Labels: Hit Red Records, Capitol Records Nashville

“H.O.L.Y.”– Florida Georgia Line
Producer: Joey Moi; Record Label: Big Machine Label Group

“Humble And Kind”-Tim McGraw
Producers: Byron Gallimore, Tim McGraw; Record Labels: McGraw Music, Big Machine Records

“My Church” – Maren Morris
Producers: busbee, Maren Morris; Record Label: Columbia Nashville

“Vice” – Miranda Lambert
Producers: Frank Liddell, Eric Masse, Glenn Worf; Record Labels: RCA Nashville, Vanner Records

SONG OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Songwriter(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s)]
“Blue Ain’t Your Color” – Keith Urban
Songwriters: Clint Lagerberg, Hillary Lindsey, Steven Lee Olsen
Publishers: WB Music Corp (ASCAP), Music Of The Corn (ASCAP), HillarodyRathbone Music (ASCAP), BMG Gold Songs (ASCAP), House of Sea Gayle Music (ASCAP), Spirit Catalog Holdings (S.a.r.l.), Spirit Two Nashville (ASCAP)

“Die A Happy Man” – Thomas Rhett
Songwriters: Thomas Rhett, Sean Douglas, Joe Spargur
Publishers: EMI Blackwood Music Inc (BMI), Cricket On The Line (BMI), Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp (BMI), Eastman Pond Publishing (BMI), Music of Big Deal (BMI), Nice Life (BMI), Frederic And Reid Music (BMI), BMG Platinum Songs (BMI), Brodsky Spensive Publishing (BMI)

“Humble And Kind” – Tim McGraw
Songwriter: Lori McKenna
Publishers: Songs of Universal Inc (BMI), Hoodie Songs (BMI)

“Kill A Word” – Eric Church Featuring Rhiannon Giddens
Songwriters: Eric Church, Luke Dick, Jeff Hyde
Publishers: Emileon Songs (BMI), Little Louder Songs (BMI), Longer And Louder Music (BMI), Mammaw’s Fried Okra Music (BMI), Sony/ATV Tree Publishing (BMI)

“Tennessee Whiskey” – Chris Stapleton
Songwriters: Dean Dillon, Linda Hargrove
Publishers: Universal-Songs Of PolyGram International (BMI), EMI Algee (BMI)

“Vice” – Miranda Lambert
Songwriters: Miranda Lambert, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
Publishers: Sony/ATV Tree Publishing (BMI), Pink Dog Publishing (BMI), Smack Hits (GMR), Kobalt Music Group,
Ltd. (GMR), Anderson Fork In The Road Music (ASCAP), Kobalt Music Publishing America, Inc. (ASCAP), Smackville Music (ASCAP)

VIDEO OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY XFINITY [Awarded to Producer(s)/Director(s)/Artist(s)]
“Fire Away” – Chris Stapleton
Director: Tim Mattia; Producer: Jennifer Rothlein

“Forever Country” – Artists of Then, Now & Forever
Director: Joseph Kahn; Producers: Nathan de la Rionda, Jil Hardin, Charleen Manca, Joanna Carter, Chandra LaPlume, Sarah Trahern, Damon Whiteside

“Humble And Kind” – Tim McGraw
Director: Wes Edwards; Producer: Jennifer Rothlein

“Peter Pan” – Kelsea Ballerini
Director: Kristin Barlowe; Producer: Michelle Abnet

“Vice” – Miranda Lambert
Director: Trey Fanjoy; Producer: Ashley Bergeron Ford

SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR*(Off Camera Award)
Ashley Gorley
Luke Laird
Hillary Lindsey
Shane McAnally
Lori McKenna

VOCAL EVENT OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
“Different For Girls” – Dierks Bentley Featuring Elle King; Producers: Ross Copperman, Arturo Buenahora Jr.; Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

“Forever Country” – Artists of Then, Now & Forever
Producer: Shane McAnally; Record Label: MCA Nashville

“May We All” – Florida Georgia Line Featuring Tim McGraw
Producer: Joey Moi; Record Label: Big Machine Label Group

“Setting The World On Fire” – Kenny Chesney Featuring P!nk
Producers: Buddy Cannon, Kenny Chesney; Record Labels: Blue Chair Records, Columbia Nashville

“Think Of You” – Chris Young Featuring Cassadee Pope
Producers: Corey Crowder, Chris Young; Record Labels: RCA Nashville, RCA Records

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About the Author

Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at [email protected]

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