Winners announced for 56th Annual CMA Awards

Luke Combs and Lainey Wilson take home top honors

The 56th Annual CMA Awards made its grand return to Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena this evening (Wed, Nov 9th), honoring musical legends, showcasing emerging artists, and highlighting unforgettable collaborations, all while celebrating excellence within country music. Hosted by Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning, Country Music’s Biggest Night delivered extraordinary performances and heartwarming moments, shining a light on a community like no other.

With a touching tribute to the iconic Loretta Lynn, superstars Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire and Carrie Underwood opened the show, performing a medley of Lynn’s classics that included “You Ain’t Woman Enough,” “Don’t Come Home A-Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind),” and “You’re Looking At Country,” before concluding with all three artists coming together to perform “Coal Miner’s Daughter.” Carly Pearce later took the stage, first speaking to how Lynn inspired and mirrored her own musical journey before being joined by Musician of the Year winner Jenee Fleenor, Sonya Isaacs, and Ricky Skaggs to perform Pearce’s original song, “Dear Miss Loretta.”

A thunderous roar echoed throughout Bridgestone Arena the moment country legend Alan Jackson surprised the crowd by performing his hit “Don’t Rock the Jukebox.” Dierks Bentley, Jon Pardi, Lainey Wilson and Underwood were on hand to honor the 2022 CMA Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award recipient with exceptional performances of Jackson’s greatest hits including “Remember When,” “Chattahoochee,” “Drive (For Daddy Gene),” and “Chasin’ That Neon Rainbow.”

Known for its once-in-a-lifetime collaborations, the CMA Awards also brought Brothers Osborne together with The War And Treaty for a show-stopping performance of the Rolling Stones’ “It’s Only Rock & Roll (But I Like It),” while Chris Stapleton and Patty Loveless performed a stirring rendition of “You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive.” Ashley McBryde welcomed friends Brandy Clark, Caylee Hammack, Pillbox Patti, and John Osborne to the stage for a powerhouse performance of Linda Ronstadt’s classic “When Will I Be Loved,” while Kelsea Ballerini was joined by friends Kelly Clarkson and Pearce for a cheeky performance of their new song “You’re Drunk, Go Home.” Thomas Rhett and Katy Perry came together to perform their heartfelt new single, “Where We Started,” while Hardy and Wilson performed a deeply powerful version of their collaboration “Wait in the Truck.”

For a second consecutive year, Luke Combs took home Entertainer of the Year. First-time winner tonight, Wilson took home New Artist of the Year and Female Vocalist of the Year, joining Alison Krauss and Underwood as the only other artist to win both Female Vocalist and New Artist in a single year. Stapleton becomes the fifth most-winning artist in CMA Awards history with tonight’s Male Vocalist of the Year win, behind Brooks & Dunn, Vince Gill, Jackson and George Strait. Stapleton also becomes the most-winning artist in the Male Vocalist category.

Additional artists taking the CMA Awards stage tonight included Bryan, Combs, Cody Johnson, Elle King, Marcus King, Jo Dee Messina, Cole Swindell, The Black Keys, Morgan Wallen, and Zac Brown Band. Watch the evening’s biggest performances now at YouTube. Starting later tonight, catch the full show on Hulu.

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR

Luke Combs

SINGLE OF THE YEAR

Award goes to Artist, Producer and Mix Engineer
“’Til You Can’t” – Cody Johnson
Producer: Trent Willmon
Mix Engineer: Jack Clarke

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

Award goes to Artist, Producer(s) and Mix Engineer(s)
Growin’ Up – Luke Combs
Producers: Luke Combs, Chip Matthews, Jonathan Singleton
Mix Engineers: Jim Cooley, Chip Matthews

SONG OF THE YEAR

Award goes to Songwriter(s)
“Buy Dirt”
Songwriters: Jacob Davis, Jordan Davis, Josh Jenkins and Matt Jenkins

FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Lainey Wilson

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Chris Stapleton

VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR

Old Dominion

VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR

Brothers Osborne

MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR

Award goes to Artist(s) and Producer(s)
“Never Wanted To Be That Girl” – Carly Pearce and Ashley McBryde
Producers: Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne

MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR

Jenee Fleenor, Fiddle

MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR

Award goes to Artist and Director
“’Til You Can’t” – Cody Johnson
Director: Dustin Haney

NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR

Lainey Wilson

Buddy Iahn
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: info@themusicuniverse.com