Hillary Scott, Lori McKenna, Sturgill Simpson, Vince Gill Earn Early Grammy Honors

Hillary Scott earns two Grammy honors during the Grammy Premiere ceremony.

Hillary Scott, Sturgill Simpson, Lori McKenna, Vince Gill, Dolly Parton, and Joey+Rory were among the early Grammy winners on Sunday (Feb. 12) during the Premiere Ceremony.

Lady Antebellum member Hillary Scott is already a double winner this year. Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song went to Hillary Scott & The Scott Family’s “Thy Will,” penned by Bernie Herms, Emily Weisband, and Hillary Scott. Publishers on the song include W.B.M. Music Corp./EKT Publishing.

The song was the lead single from Scott’s Love Remains album (EMI Records Nashville), which also earned the Grammy honor for Best Contemporary Christian Music Album.

Scott was joined on the Grammy stage by her parents Linda Davis and Lang Scott, and young sister Rylee. Scott thanked her Lady Antebellum bandmates Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood for their support.


The Best Country Song Grammy went to Lori McKenna, solo writer of “Humble and Kind,” from Tim McGraw’s Damn Country Music album. Publishers on the song include Songs of Universal/Hoodie Songs.

“This is such an honor,” said McKenna.“Tim McGraw made a moment out of this simple prayer I wrote for five kids.” She thanked Creative Nation and members of Tim McGraw’s industry team. McKenna also earned the Best Country Song Grammy honor last year, for penning Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush,” with co-writers Hillary Lindsey and Liz Rose.

Sturgill Simpson’s Atlantic album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth earned Best Country Album.

Best Country Duo/Group Performance went to “Jolene,” performed by Pentatonix featuring Dolly Parton.

Willie Nelson was also honored with Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album, for Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin, released on Legacy Recordings.

CCM artists Lauren Daigle and For King & Country, and American roots/folk artist Sarah Jarosz served as presenters.

Jarosz was also a winner with “House of Mercy” earning a Grammy for Best American Roots Performance. She also earned Best Folk Album for Undercurrent.

William Bell’s This is Where I Live earned a Grammy for Best Americana Album.

Dave Mustaine won his first Grammy with his band Megadeth for “Dystopia,” in the Best Metal Performance category.

Giancarlo Guerrero and the Nashville Symphony earned three awards during the pre-telecast ceremony. “Daugherty: Tales Of Hemingway,” which includes Guerrero as conductor, picked up honors for Best Classical Instrumental Solo, Best Classical Compendium and Best Contemporary Classical Composition.

Within a five-minute span, it picked up wins for best classical instrumental solo, best classical compendium and best contemporary classical composition.

The winning moment was bittersweet for several winners.

Best American Roots Song went to Vince Gill for penning “Kid Sister” for The Time Jumpers. The track is the title track for Kid Sister, released on Rounder Records. Publishers for the song include Vinny Mae Music.

Gill penned “Kid Sister” to honor The Time Jumpers vocalist Dawn Sears, who died in 2014 after a hard-fought battle with cancer.

“I wish you all would have had the chance to hear the voice of the woman I wrote this song about. Her name is Dawn Sears. She’s one of the best voices you will ever hear in your life. I encourage you to find her voice,” said Gill.


Joey+Rory earned a Grammy for Best Roots Gospel Album, for Hymns, released on Gaither Music Group/Farmhouse Recordings. Joey Martin Feek, the female half of Joey+Rory, died March 4, 2016.

“My wife’s dream was to make a hymns album,” said Rory Feek. “She didn’t have a chance to do it until she had stage four cancer. She sang her vocals in hotel rooms while she did chemo and radiation. We watched this ceremony last year. She said, ‘If we get nominated, promise me you will come.’ I said, ‘I will.’ She said, ‘Remember, if we win, I’ll know before you will.’”

The televised portion of the 59th annual Grammy Awards will air Sunday, Feb. 12 beginning at 7 p.m. CT on CBS.

For more on Nashville winners and performers during the televised portion of the 59th annual Grammy Awards, click here.



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Category: Artist, Awards, Featured

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 jnicholson@musicrow.com.

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