Cover photo courtesy of Big Indy News
The 56th annual Country Music Awards were last week and some fantastic artists were candidates for many awards. The awards were hosted by country star, Luke Bryan, and retired NFL quarterback, Peyton Manning. It was a big night for many top artists who were nominated.
There were also performances by Luke Combs, Brothers Osborne, and many other famous country stars. One of the most memorable performances was Cole Swindell and ‘90s country music star, Jo Dee Messina. Jo Dee Messina is most famous for her song “Head Carolina, Tails California,” which came out in 1996. Swindell wrote a song called “She Had Me At Heads Carolina” about a girl he met at a bar, singing karaoke to Messina’s song “Head Carolina, Tails California.” At the CMAs, they performed a remix of Swindell’s song. This performance brought old country and new country together.
Photo courtesy of ABC News
The first award of the night was “Single of the Year”. Many of the singles nominated were duets which is one of the reasons they are so popular. Jordan Davis and Luke Bryan teamed up with their song “Buy Dirt,” and Kelsea Ballerini and Kenny Chesney with “half of my hometown” and “Never Wanted To Be That Girl” by Carley Pearce and Ashley McBryde. However, the single that won was not a collaboration between two artists. Cody Johnson won with his single “Til You Can’t.” This song by Johnson also won the “Best Music Video” award.
Even though Davis’ and Bryan’s song “Buy Dirt” did not win single of the year, it did win the title of “Song of the Year.” This song was up against other strong contenders. Morgan Wallen’s “Sand In My Boots” was the second strongest contender in the running for song of the year. However, Wallen’s image was corrupted when he was caught saying a racial slur in 2021, which could have contributed to the lack of awards won by Wallen.
Lainey Wilson has started to make a name for herself this year. Her work was nominated for “Album of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” “Single of the Year,” and “Musical Event of the Year.” Wilson has produced lots of collaborations. Swindell and Wilson worked together to create “Never Say Never.” Wilson collaborated with Ashley McBryde in “Never Wanted To Be That Girl,” which was up for four awards. However, Wilson’s successes are not just because of collaborations with popular artists. Wilson’s song “Things A Man Ought To Know” was up for “Song of the Year.” However, the two greatest awards she received were “Female Vocalist of the Year” and “New Artist of the Year.” These two awards are two of the most respected awards at the CMAs.
Photo courtesy of Fox News
Finally, arguably the most important award of the night, Entertainer of the Year, went to Luke Combs. The other nominees were Miranda Lambert, Chris Stapelton, Carrie Underwood, and Morgan Wallen. Combs reached a career-high this year. His songs have been at the top of the Billboards all year with songs like “Doin’ This” and “The Kind Of Love We Make.” He went on tour in the past year with multiple international stops.
The 56th Country Music Awards were memorable, with great performances and awards. Lots of famous artists received well-deserved recognition for their accomplishments throughout the year.