Cindy Watts Nashville Tennessean Published 11:55 PM EST Nov 14, 2018 Keith Urban won his second Entertainer of the Year Award on Wednesday night at the 52nd CMA Awards, 13 years after he picked up his first trophy in the show's most prestigious category. "Baby girl, I Iove you so much," Urban said to his wife, Nicole Kidman. "I'm shocked beyond shocked. God, I thank you so much for the blessings of this. I wish my dad was alive to see this, but I think he's watching over me tonight." Earning a win in the category more than 10 years since the last is rare — only Garth Brooks and George Strait can say they’ve done it. But Urban’s 2017-2018 was undeniable. Urban's "Coming Home," a duet with Julia Michaels, launched his critically acclaimed album "Graffiti U" this spring, and he's spent the months since selling out arenas around the country. The night’s other top winners include Chris Stapleton, who — surprising even himself — won … [Read more...] about CMA Awards: Keith Urban upsets, Chris Stapleton steamrolls
Kathryn Gregory Louisville Courier Journal Published 7:03 PM EST Nov 14, 2018 Kentucky native Chris Stapleton could win big — really big — at the 2018 Country Music Awards taking place Thursday in Nashville. Stapleton, who hails from Lexington, leads the pack with five nominations: male vocalist of the year, single of the year, album of the year, song of the year and the coveted entertainer of the year award. Phew. We're tired just writing that list of nominations! Stapleton has risen to the top of the country and pop charts on the strength of his rough-and-ready singing. Let's look at his competition for Thursday night: Entertainer of the Year Jason Aldean Luke Bryan Kenny Chesney Chris Stapleton Keith Urban Single of the Year "Broken Halos," Chris Stapleton "Drinkin' Problem," Midland "Drowns the Whiskey," Jason Aldean feat. Miranda Lambert "Meant to Be," Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line "Tequila," Dan + Shay Male … [Read more...] about County Music Awards 2018: Chris Stapleton leads nominations
Cindy Watts Nashville Tennessean Published 7:01 PM EST Nov 13, 2018 Cries of bro-country echoed throughout country music in 2013, directed at shallow party songs more about melody than content. The term was derogatory, dismissive and often slapped on the genre’s biggest stars. Five years later, bro country's popularity has waned, as a renewed social consciousness is rising in country music lyrics that tackle nation’s most polarizing topics. To be sure, there remains no shortage of groovy up-tempos about girls and good times, but the silver threads that bind the genre these days are different. Artists are increasingly pointing their words at what hurts and divides in an effort to give those living in the void a voice – and above all, hope. Among them are Chris Janson, whose hit "Drunk Girl" is a lesson in taking care of vulnerable women instead of taking advantage of them. “We just wanted to put a positive message in the … [Read more...] about CMA Awards, Luke Bryan, Chris Janson, Kenny Chesney , Carrie Underwood lead country music’s socially conscious movement
Cindy Watts Nashville Tennessean Published 9:00 AM EST Nov 13, 2018 Who will emerge the big winner on country music's biggest night? Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood will co-host the 52nd CMA Awards for the 11th time at 7 p.m. Wednesday from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena. The show — with performances from Kenny Chesney, Dan + Shay, Luke Bryan, Garth Brooks, Pistol Annies, Brad Paisley, Ricky Skaggs, Chris Stapleton with Maren Morris and Mavis Staples, Kelsea Ballerini, Keith Urban and more — will air live on ABC. While the show is still days away, these are our predictions on which country singers will take home the trophies. Entertainer of the Year Who should win: Kenny Chensey or Luke Bryan This should be a race between Kenny Chesney and Luke Bryan. Both men sold out stadiums this year and had hits on country radio — Chesney with “Get Along” and “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” and Bryan with … [Read more...] about CMA Awards: Chris Stapleton is most nominated, but will he win?
Cindy Watts Nashville Tennessean Published 10:00 AM EDT Oct 18, 2018 Editor’s note: This series highlights the five nominees for the New Artist of the Year award at the CMA's 52nd awards show Nov. 14. Coming Friday: Brett Young. Chris Janson and Keith Urban had just finished a blistering cover of John Michael Montgomery’s “Sold (the Grundy County Auction)" at Ryman Auditorium when Urban told Janson he thought it was “about time” Janson knew what it felt like to be a member of the Grand Ole Opry. It was January 22 — the date of Janson’s first headlining show at Ryman Auditorium. He knew the sold-out evening would be a milestone for him. He started his career more than a decade prior, just steps across the alley at Tootsies Orchid Lounge. The opportunity to headline the Ryman was a dream come true. To be asked to become a member of the Grand Ole Opry the same evening was beyond comprehension for Janson. The … [Read more...] about CMA Awards: Nominee Chris Janson talks ‘Drunk Girl,’ ‘Buy Me a Boat’