Eric Church, Chris Stapleton lead 51st Annual ACM Award nominations

Nominations for the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards, Country Music’s Party of the Year, honoring country music’s superstars and hottest emerging talent, have been announced. Hosted by Dierks Bentley and reigning ACM Entertainer of the Year Luke Bryan, the ACM Awards are produced for television by dick clark productions and will be broadcast LIVE from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, April 3rd from 8 PM until 11 PM ET/delayed PT on the CBS Television Network.

Dierks Bentley announced the nominees for six categories including Entertainer of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Vocal Duo of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year, and Album of the Year live on CBS This Morning. Additionally, “Entertainment Tonight” co-host Nancy O’Dell revealed nominees for the newcomer categories, Single Record of the Year, Video of the Year and Vocal Event of the Year on ETOnline.com.

Eric Church is nominated in five categories, including his first for Entertainer of the Year and third for Male Vocalist of the Year. Also, Church is nominated for Album of the Year for Mr. Misunderstood, Video of the Year for “Mr. Misunderstood,” and Vocal Event of the Year for “Raise ‘Em Up” with Keith Urban.

Chris Stapleton earned five nominations, including his first-ever nods for Male Vocalist of the Year, New Male Vocalist of the Year, Vocal Event of the Year for “Hangover Tonight” with Gary Allan, and is twice nominated as both artist and producer in the Album of the Year category for Traveller.

Cam, first-time ACM Awards nominee, received four nominations, including New Female Vocalist of the Year, Video of the Year for “Burning House, and is twice nominated as both artist and producer in the Single Record of the Year category for “Burning House.”

Chris Young received four nominations, including his first Album of the Year nomination for I’m Comin’ Over as both the artist and producer. Also, he received two nods as artist and producer in the Single Record of the Year category for “I’m Comin’ Over.”

Little Big Town, reigning Vocal Group of the Year, leads group nominations with four, including their 10th nomination for Vocal Group of the Year. The group earned nominations in the Single Record of the Year and Video of the Year categories for the song “Girl Crush.” Also, Little Big Town received a Vocal Event of the Year nomination for “Smokin’ And Drinkin’” with Miranda Lambert. Additionally, Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild received an individual nomination for Vocal Event of the Year for “Home Alone Tonight” with Luke Bryan.

First-time ACM Awards nominee, Chris Janson earned three nominations, including New Male Vocalist of the Year, and is twice nominated as both artist and producer in the Single Record of the Year category for “Buy Me A Boat.”

Reigning Female Vocalist of the Year, Miranda Lambert earned three nominations, including her fifth nomination for Entertainer of the Year and 10th consecutive nod for Female Vocalist of the Year. Additionally, she is nominated for Vocal Event of the Year for “Smokin’ And Drinkin’” featuring Little Big Town.

Thomas Rhett earned three nominations including his first in the Album of the Year category for Tangled Up and Single Record of the Year category for “Die a Happy Man.” Also, he received a nomination for New Male Vocalist of the Year.

Previously fan-voted, Entertainer of the Year and newcomer categories, New Male Vocalist of the Year, New Female Vocalist of the Year and New Vocal Duo or Group of the Year, are now all incorporated into the professional membership voting process this year.

Following is the list of final nominees. Note, nominees for Song of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, Studio Recording Awards and Industry Awards will be announced at a later date. The Academy of Country Music’s professional membership selects the nominees and winners of the Academy of Country Music Awards. Winners in each of the categories, except where noted, will be presented with an Academy of Country Music Award during the live television broadcast:

Entertainer of the Year

  • Jason Aldean
  • Garth Brooks
  • Luke Bryan
  • Eric Church
  • Miranda Lambert

 
Male Vocalist of the Year

  • Jason Aldean
  • Dierks Bentley
  • Eric Church
  • Brett Eldredge
  • Chris Stapleton

 
Female Vocalist of the Year

  • Kelsea Ballerini
  • Jana Kramer
  • Miranda Lambert
  • Kacey Musgraves
  • Carrie Underwood

 
New Vocal Duo or Group of the Year

  • A Thousand Horses
  • Brothers Osborne
  • Maddie & Tae
  • Old Dominion
  • Parmalee

 
ALBUM OF THE YEAR

[Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
  • I’m Comin’ Over – Chris Young
Producers: Corey Crowder, Chris Young
Record Label: RCA Records
  • Montevallo – Sam Hunt
Producers: Zach Crowell, Shane McAnally
Record Label: MCA Nashville
  • Mr. Misunderstood – Eric Church
Producer: Jay Joyce
Record Label: EMI Records Nashville
  • Tangled Up – Thomas Rhett
Producers: Dann Huff, Jesse Frasure, Chris DeStefano, Joe London
Record Label: The Valory Music Co.
  • Traveller – Chris Stapleton

Producers: Dave Cobb, Chris Stapleton
Record Label: Mercury Records

Single Record of the Year

[Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
  • Burning House – Cam
Producers: Jeff Bhasker, Tyler Johnson, Camaron Ochs
Record Labels: Arista Nashville, RCA Records, Kravenworks
  • Buy Me A Boat – Chris Janson
Producers: Brent Anderson, Chris DuBois, Chris Janson
Record Label: Warner Music Nashville
  • Die A Happy Man – Thomas Rhett
Producers: Dann Huff, Jesse Frasure
Record Label: The Valory Music Co.
  • Girl Crush – Little Big Town
Producer: Jay Joyce
Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville
  • I’m Comin’ Over – Chris Young
Producers: Corey Crowder, Chris Young
Record Label: RCA Nashville
  • Take Your Time – Sam Hunt

Producers: Zach Crowell, Shane McAnally
Record Label: MCA Nashville

Video of the Year

[Awarded to Producer(s)/Director(s)/Artist(s)] *(Off Camera Award)
  • Biscuits – Kacey Musgraves
Director: Mark Klasfeld
Producer: Nicole Acacio
  • Burning House – Cam
Director: Trey Fanjoy
Producer: Trent Hardville
  • Girl Crush – Little Big Town
Directors: Karla Welch, Matthew Welch
Producer: Amanda Prunesti
  • Mr. Misunderstood – Eric Church
Directors: Reid Long, John Peets
Producer: Megan Smith
  • Riser – Dierks Bentley

Director: Wes Edwards
Producer: Jennifer Rothlein

Vocal Event of the Year

[Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]*(Off Camera Award)
  • Hangover Tonight – Gary Allan Featuring Chris Stapleton
Producers: Gary Allan, Greg Droman
Record Label: MCA Nashville
  • Home Alone Tonight – Luke Bryan Featuring Karen Fairchild
Producers: Jeff Stevens, Jody Stevens
Record Label: Capitol Nashville
  • Raise ‘Em Up – Keith Urban Featuring Eric Church
Producers: Nathan Chapman, Keith Urban
Record Labels: Hit Red Records, Capitol Nashville
  • Smokin’ And Drinkin’ – Miranda Lambert Featuring Little Big Town
Producers: Frank Liddell, Chuck Ainlay, Glenn Worf
Record Label: RCA Nashville
  • Wild Child – Kenny Chesney With Grace Potter

Producers: Buddy Cannon, Kenny Chesney
Record Labels: Blue Chair Records, Columbia Nashville

RADIO AWARDS – The following radio awards will be presented during the annual Radio Winners Reception held the day prior to the ACM Awards telecast, on Saturday, April 2 in Las Vegas, NV.

NATIONAL ON-AIR PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR

(3-way tie within category lead to increased nominees)
  • Blair Garner, Chuck Wicks                                                 America’s Morning Show
  • Cody Alan                                                                          CMT After MidNite with Cody Alan
  • Lon Helton                                                                Country Countdown USA with Lon Helton
  • Lorianne Crook and Charlie Chase                                   The Crook and Chase Countdown
  • Sam Alex                                                                           Taste of Country Nights
  • The Bobby Bones Show                                                    The Bobby Bones Show
  • Whitney Allen, Jackie Stevens & Mike McNamee              The Big Time with Whitney Allen

 
ON-AIR PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR – MAJOR MARKET

  • Ben Campbell and Matt McAllister                       KNIX-FM            Phoenix, AZ
  • Cadillac Jack                                                        WQYK-FM         St. Petersburg, FL
  • Chris Carr, Maverick and Kia                               KEEY-FM           St. Louis Park, MN
  • Paul Schadt, Meg Butterly, Geof Knight               WKKT-FM          Charlotte, NC
  • Tanner in the Morning                                          WSOC-FM          Charlotte, NC

 
ON-AIR PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR – LARGE MARKET

  • AJ & Ashley In The Morning                                    WWKA-FM           Orlando, FL
  • Dave O’Brien                                                           WLHK-FM             Indianapolis, IN
  • Jim Denny, Deborah Honeycutt & Kevin Freeman  WFMS-FM            Indianapolis, IN
  • Karen, Scott & Radar                                               WMIL-FM              Greenfield, WI
  • Randy Carroll and Jamie Martin                              KAJA-FM                San Antonio, TX

 
ON-AIR PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR – MEDIUM MARKET

  • Andy Ritchie, Alison Mencer, Jimmy Holt    WIVK-FM                            Knoxville, TN
  • Broadway, Cory, Jordan                             WWYZ-FM                          Hartford, CT
  • Buzz Jackson                                              KIIM-FM                             Tucson, AZ
  • Scott Wynn, Sarah Kay, Sue Wilson           WQMX-FM                          Akron, OH
  • The Dex and Mo Show                               WUSY-FM                           Chattanooga, TN

 
ON-AIR PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR – SMALL MARKET

  • Bill Barrett, Tim Fox & Tracy Berry                       KKNU-FM                           Eugene, OR
  • Brent Lane and Candy Ruddy                              WYCT-FM                          Pensacola, FL
  • Brian Gary, Todd Harding, and Susan Moore –   KUAD-FM                           Windsor, CO
    The Good Morning Guys
  • Scotty Cox & Cara Denis                                      KCLR-FM                            Columbia, MO
  • Sherry St. John                                                    WXFL-FM                            Florence, AL

 
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR – MAJOR MARKET

  • KMLE-FM                             Phoenix, AZ
  • WKKT-FM                            Charlotte, NC
  • WKLB-FM                            Boston, MA
  • WQYK-FM                           St. Petersburg, FL
  • WYCD-FM                           Southfield, MI

 
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR – LARGE MARKET

  • KAJA-FM                             San Antonio, TX
  • WLHK-FM                            Indianapolis, IN
  • WMIL-FM                            Greenfield, WI
  • WUBE-FM                           Cincinnati, OH
  • WQDR-FM                           Raleigh, NC

 
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR – MEDIUM MARKET

  • KUZZ-FM                             Bakersfield, CA
  • WHKO-FM                           Dayton, OH
  • WIVK-FM                             Knoxville, TN
  • WQMX-FM                          Akron, OH
  • WUSY-FM                           Chattanooga, TN

 
RADIO STATION OF THE YEAR – SMALL MARKET

  • KKNU-FM                           Eugene, OR
  • KTTS-FM                           Springfield, MO
  • WGSQ-FM                         Cookeville, TN
  • WXFL-FM                          Florence, AL
  • WYCT-FM                          Pensacola, FL

Author: 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.