CMT announces 2021 Artists of the Year

Chris Stapleton, Gabby Barrett, Kane Brown, Kelsea Ballerini, and Luke Combs to be honored

CMT has announced its 2021 Artists of the Year ahead of the October 13th presentation from Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Chris Stapleton, Gabby Barrett, Kane Brown, Kelsea Ballerini, and Luke Combs will be honored in the televised event at 9 pm ET.

These five artists collectively ruled the last 12 months in country music, leading across all CMT’s platforms, scoring chart-topping albums and singles while simultaneously finding creative ways to connect with fans and meet the personal and professional challenges posed by the pandemic.

“We are honored to recognize these five incredible artists who have entertained and inspired millions through their music this past year,” notes Margaret Comeaux, CMT’s Vice President of Production. “We look forward to returning to the Schermerhorn with a live show as we celebrate the accomplishments of Chris, Kane, Kelsea, Gabby and Luke.”

The 90-minute special celebrates Stapleton, Brown, Ballerini, Barrett, and Combs with never-before-seen performances, collaborations, and congratulatory moments. Musical pairings, special guests, additional honorees, performers, and presenters will be announced in the coming weeks.

In addition, the Artists of the Year ceremony returns to its original format after adapting last year to honor some of the most vital and inspirational Americans on the frontlines of the pandemic.

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Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites. Email:
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