ACM Noms Led by Maren Morris, Dan + Shay, Thomas Rhett; Keith Urban Set to Host

Chris Willman

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Maren Morris, Dan + Shay and Thomas Rhett were among the top nominees announced Thursday morning for the Academy of Country Music Awards, to air live from Las Vegas on CBS April 5.

Keith Urban was additionally announced Thursday as a first-time host for the show. It was expected that last spring’s ACMs host, Reba McEntire, might not be resuming the role after she stepped over to host the CMA Awards this past November. Hosts in recent years have mostly involved duos, with Dierks Bentley, Luke Bryan and Blake Shelton pairing up with one another or McEntire.

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The ACMs announced that Morris, Rhett and producer Dann Huff led the nomination total, with five each, followed by Dan + Shay, Shelton, Old Dominion and Justin Bieber with four. However, the math gets a little tricky with the ACMs and is best explained with a lot of asterisks, since for their tallies, unlike most other music awards, they give performers multiple nods in a single category if they also co-wrote or co-produced as well as sang the nominated material.

So in some sense, collectively, Dan + Shay might have the most nominations, because in addition to the four they received as a recording duo, Dan Smyers picked up two more as an individual (as songwriter and producer) and Shay Mooney got one more (as songwriter), for a total of seven between the two of them. As a pair, they picked up nominations for duo of the year (for a seventh time), video of the year, music event of the year and song of the year. Those last three came for “10,000 Hours,” their duet with Bieber.

Perhaps needless to add, Bieber’s four nominations for “10,000 Hours” (as a co-writer on the collaboration as well as performer) represent his first ACM nods.

Morris’ five nominations came in four categories: female artist of the year (her fourth turn at bat there), album of the year (for her hit “Girl” album), music event of the year (for the all-star, all-female jam “Fooled Around and Fell in Love”) and as a member of a group of the year contender — the Highwomen, getting their first awards love. Her dual nomination came as both a performer and co-producer for album of the year.

Perhaps not coincidentally, Morris announced her coming summer tour the day before being the recipient of a lot of love from the ACMs.

Morris’ co-producer on most of the “Girl” album, the late Busbee, was posthumously nominated for two awards, producer of the year and album of the year.

Like Morris, Rhett got his five nominations in four categories. Most notably, he was put up for the first time for entertainer of the year, a recognition of his having become an arena headliner. He also got nominations for male artist of the year (his fourth time in that category), video of the year and album of the year (twice, as a performer and co-producer).

Besides Rhett, the entertainer of the year category is rounded out by Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Luke Combs and Carrie Underwood. That last inclusion is notable because last year, controversially, there were no women nominated for entertainer of the year. A press release touting the nominations pointed out that women are included in every non-gender-specific category this year.

Among those getting three nominations were Combs — the newest certified superstar of the genre — along with Church, Miranda Lambert, Ashley McBryde, Kacey Musgraves.

The nominations are, as always, mostly exclusive to artists that got airplay on country radio (with the exception of the group nomination for the Highwomen). Tanya Tucker, who just picked up Grammys for both country album and country song of the year, was not nominated for any ACMs.

The ceremony will air live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena at 8 ET and via tape delay at 8 PT April 5 on CBS.

The full list of nominations:

MAIN AWARDS:

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR

Female ARTIST of the year

Male artist of the year

  • Dierks Bentley
  • Luke Combs
  • Thomas Rhett
  • Chris Stapleton
  • Keith Urban

Duo of the year

  • Brooks & Dunn
  • Brothers Osborne
  • Dan + Shay
  • Florida Georgia Line
  • Maddie & Tae

Group OF THE YEAR

  • Lady Antebellum
  • Little Big Town
  • Midland
  • Old Dominion
  • The Highwomen

NEW FEMALE artist OF THE YEAR

  • Ingrid Andress
  • Gabby Barrett
  • Lindsay Ell
  • Caylee Hammack
  • Tenille Townes

NEW MALE artist OF THE YEAR

  • Jordan Davis
  • Russell Dickerson
  • Riley Green
  • Cody Johnson
  • Morgan Wallen

ALBUM OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]

  • Center Point Road – Thomas Rhett
    • Producers: Julian Bunetta, Jesse Frasure, Dann Huff, Thomas Rhett, The Stereotypes, Cleve Wilson
    • Record Label: The Valory Music Co.
  • GIRL – Maren Morris
    • Producers: busbee, Greg Kurstin, Maren Morris
    • Record Label: Columbia Nashville
  • Heartache Medication – Jon Pardi
    • Producers: Bart Butler, Ryan Gore, Jon Pardi
    • Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville
  • What You See Is What You Get – Luke Combs
    • Producer: Scott Moffatt
    • Record Label: River House Artists/Columbia Nashville
  • Wildcard – Miranda Lambert
    • Producer: Jay Joyce
    • Record Label: Vanner Records/RCA Records Nashville

Single of the Year [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]

  • God’s Country – Blake Shelton
    • Producer: Scott Hendricks
    • Record Label: Warner Bros. (Nashville)
  • One Man Band – Old Dominion
    • Producer: Shane McAnally
    • Record Label: RCA Records Nashville
  • Rainbow – Kacey Musgraves
    • Producers: Ian Fitchuk, Kacey Musgraves, Daniel Tashian
    • Record Label: MCA Nashville
  • Rumor – Lee Brice
    • Producers: Lee Brice, Dan Frizsell, Kyle Jacobs, Jon Stone
    • Record Label: Curb Records
  • What If I Never Get Over You – Lady Antebellum
    • Producer: Dann Huff
    • Record Label: BMLG Records

SONG OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Songwriter(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s)]

  • 10,000 Hours – Dan + Shay Featuring Justin Bieber
    • Songwriters: Justin Bieber, Jason “Poo Bear” Boyd, Jessie Jo Dillon, Shay Mooney, Jordan Reynolds, Dan Smyers
    • Publishers: Beats and Banjos (ASCAP), WB Music Corp. (ASCAP) / Shay Mooney Music (BMI), Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (BMI) / Big Ass Pile Of Dimes Music (BMI), Big Machine Music (BMI) / Buckeye 26 (ASCAP), Jreynmusic (ASCAP), WB Music Corp. (ASCAP) / Bieber Time Publishing (ASCAP), Universal Music (ASCAP) / Poo B Z Inc. (ASCAP), BMG Gold Songs (ASCAP).
  • Girl Goin’ Nowhere – Ashley McBryde
    • Songwriters: Jeremy Bussey, Ashley McBryde
    • Publishers: Songs of Song Factory (BMI) / Universal Tunes (SESAC).
  • God’s Country – Blake Shelton
    • Songwriters: Devin Dawson, Michael Hardy, Jordan Schmidt
    • Publishers: Relative Music Group (BMI), Administered by Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing (BMI) / WB Music Corp. / Georgia Song Vibez / We-volve Music (ASCAP) / Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. / Neon Cross Music (BMI).
  • One Man Band – Old Dominion
    • Songwriters: Josh Osborne, Matthew Ramsey, Trevor Rosen, Brad Tursi
    • Publishers: WB Music Corp/Smackville Music/Smack Songs LLC (ASCAP) adm by Kobalt Songs Music Publishing. Rezsongs/Reehits World/Smacktown Music, a division of Smack Blue, LLC/Unfair Entertainment (ASCAP) adm. by Me Gusta Music. We’re Really Doin’ It Publishing (ASCAP) adm by Words & Music. Sony/ATV Cross Keys Publishing/Smackville Music/Smack Songs LLC (ASCAP) adm. by Kobalt Songs Music Publishing.
  • Some Of It – Eric Church
    • Songwriters: Eric Church, Clint Daniels, Jeff Hyde, Bobby Pinson
    • Publishers: Sony/ATV Tree Publishing/Longer and Louder Music, admin. by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC; Mammaw’s Fried Okra Music/Little Louder Songs, admin. by Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing; New Writers Of Sea Gayle Music, admin. by ClearBox Rights; New Writers Of Sea Gayle Music/Not A Track Guy Music, admin. by ClearBox Rights (BMI).

Video of the Year [Awarded to Producer(s)/Director(s)/Artist(s)]

  • 10,000 Hours – Dan + Shay Featuring Justin Bieber
    • Director: Patrick Tracy
    • Producer: Christen Pinkston
  • God’s Country – Blake Shelton
    • Director: Sophie Muller
    • Producers: Jamie Amos, Patrick Kennedy
  • One Man Band – Old Dominion
    • Director: Mason Allen
    • Producer: Mason Allen
  • Remember You Young – Thomas Rhett
    • Director: TK McKamy
    • Producer: Dan Atchison
  • Sugar Coat – Little Big Town
    • Directors: Alexa Kinigopoulos, Stephen Kinigopoulos
    • Producers: Wes Edwards, Carlo Glorioso, Angie Lorenz

songwriter of the year*(Off Camera Award)

  • Ashley Gorley
  • Michael Hardy
  • Hillary Lindsey
  • Shane McAnally
  • Josh Osborne

MUSIC Event of the Year [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]

  • 10,000 Hours – Dan + Shay Featuring Justin Bieber
    • Producers: Dan Smyers
    • Record Label: Warner Music Nashville
  • Dive Bar – Garth Brooks Featuring Blake Shelton
    • Producers: Garth Brooks
    • Record Label: Pearl Records, Inc.
  • Fooled Around And Fell In Love – Miranda Lambert Featuring Maren Morris, Ashley McBryde, Tenille Townes, Caylee Hammack & Elle King
    • Producer: Jay Joyce
    • Record Label: Vanner Records/RCA Records Nashville
  • Old Town Road – Lil Nas X Featuring Billy Ray Cyrus
    • Producers: Michael Trent Reznor, Atticus Matthew Ross, YoungKio
    • Record Label: Columbia Records
  • What Happens In A Small Town – Brantley Gilbert Featuring Lindsay Ell
    • Producer: Dann Huff
    • Record Label: The Valory Music Co.

INDUSTRY AWARDS:
CASINO OF THE YEAR – THEATER

  • The Colosseum at Caesars Palace – Las Vegas, NV
  • The Joint: Tulsa – Tulsa, OK
  • Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort – Mt. Pleasant, MI
  • The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino – Las Vegas, NV
  • WinStar Global Event Center – Thackerville, OK

CASINO OF THE YEAR – ARENA

  • Mark G. Etess Arena – Atlantic City, NJ
  • MGM Grand Garden Arena – Las Vegas, NV
  • Sandia Amphitheater – Albuquerque, NM
  • Stir Concert Cove – Council Bluffs, IA
  • T Mobile Arena – Las Vegas, NV

FAIR/RODEO OF THE YEAR

  • California Mid-State Fair – Paso Robles, CA
  • Cheyenne Frontier Days – Cheyenne, WY
  • Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo – Houston, TX
  • Minnesota State Fair – St. Paul, MN
  • San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo – San Antonio, TX

 

FESTIVAL OF THE YEAR

  • Boots and Hearts Music Festival – Oro-Medonte, OR
  • Stagecoach – Indio, CA
  • Tortuga Music Festival – Fort Lauderdale, FL
  • Watershed Festival – George, WA
  • Windy City Smokeout – Chicago, IL

CLUB OF THE YEAR

  • Billy Bob’s Texas – Fort Worth, TX
  • Coyote Joe’s – Charlotte, NC
  • Grizzly Rose – Denver, CO
  • Joe’s Live – Rosemont, IL
  • Losers Bar & Grill – Nashville, TN

THEATER OF THE YEAR

  • The Beacon Theatre – New York, NY
  • The Chicago Theatre – Chicago, IL
  • DeJoria Center – Salt Lake City, UT
  • Rialto Square Theatre – Joliet, IL
  • Ruth Eckerd Hall – Clearwater, FL

OUTDOOR VENUE OF THE YEAR

  • Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion – Gilford, NH
  • Greek Theatre – Los Angeles, CA
  • Innsbrook After Hours – Glen Allen, VA
  • Red Rocks Amphitheatre – Morrison, CO
  • Rose Music Center – Huber Heights, OH
  • The Wharf at Orange Beach – Orange Beach, AL

ARENA OF THE YEAR

  • Infinite Energy Center – Duluth, GA
  • Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
  • Staples Center – Los Angeles, CA
  • Van Andel Arena – Grand Rapids, MI
  • VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena – Jacksonville, FL

DON ROMEO TALENT BUYER OF THE YEAR

  • Clay Campbell – Triangle Talent
  • Gary Osier – Gary Osier Presents
  • Gil Cunningham – Neste Live!
  • Kell Houston – Houston Productions
  • Nina Rojas – Neste Live!
  • Todd Boltin – Variety Attractions

PROMOTER OF THE YEAR

  • Adam Weiser – AEG Presents
  • Brian O’Connell – Live Nation
  • Jered Johnson – Pepper Productions
  • Stacy Vee – Messina Touring Group
  • Troy Vollhoffer – Premier Global Production

STUDIO RECORDING AWARDS:

BASS PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Eli Beaird
  • Mike Brignardello
  • Tim Marks
  • Michael Rhodes
  • Jimmie Lee Sloas

DRUMMER OF THE YEAR

  • Fred Eltringham
  • Miles McPherson
  • Greg Morrow
  • Jerry Roe
  • Nir Zidkyahu

GUITAR PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Tom Bukovac
  • Dann Huff
  • Rob McNelley
  • Adam Shoenfeld
  • Ilya Toshinskiy

PIANO/KEYBOARDS PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • David Dorn
  • Tony Harrell
  • Charlie Judge
  • Tim Lauer
  • Gordon Mote
  • Mike Rojas

SPECIALTY INSTRUMENT(S) PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Stuart Duncan
  • Jenee Fleenor
  • Jim Hoke
  • Danny Rader
  • Joe Spivey
  • Charlie Worsham

STEEL GUITAR PLAYER OF THE YEAR

  • Dan Dugmore
  • Paul Franklin
  • Josh Grange
  • Russ Pahl
  • Justin Schipper

AUDIO ENGINEER OF THE YEAR

  • Chuck Ainlay
  • Jeff Balding
  • Tony Castle
  • Julian King
  • Steve Marcantonio
  • Justin Niebank

PRODUCER OF THE YEAR

  • busbee
  • Buddy Cannon
  • Dann Huff
  • Michael Knox
  • Joey Moi

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