• THE 2018 CMA NOMINATIONS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED.

    Luke Bryan, Dan + Shay and Sugarland announced the final nominations for The 52nd Annual CMA Awards this morning (August 28th) live on ABC’s Good Morning America from Luke’s 32 Bridge Food + Drink bar located on Lower Broadway in downtown Nashville.

    The artists revealed six categories live on-air, then announced the remaining six categories, along with finalists for the CMA Broadcast Awards, on GoodMorningAmerica.com as well as via “Good Morning America’s” Facebook page through Facebook Live, Twitter and simulcast on “Good Morning America’s” YouTube channel.

    Chris Stapleton tops the list of finalists with five nominations. Producer and musician Dann Huff receives four nominations, the second most nominations this year, while nine artists garner three each—Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Dan + Shay, Florida Georgia Line, Chris Janson, Miranda Lambert, Midland, Thomas Rhett and Keith Urban.

    CHRIS STAPLETON – FIVE NOMINATIONS
    Entertainer of the Year, Single of the Year (“Broken Halos”), Album of the Year (From A Room: Volume 2), Song of the Year (“Broken Halos”), Male Vocalist of the Year 

    Stapleton leads this year’s CMA Awards nominations with five, adding to his previous 11 nominations and seven wins. He lands his third consecutive nod for Entertainer of the Year in addition to nominations in the Single and Song of the Year categories for “Broken Halos,” produced by Dave Cobb and Stapleton, mixed by Vance Powell, and written by Mike Henderson and Stapleton. Stapleton earns his third nomination for Album of the Year for From A Room: Volume 2, produced by Cobb and Stapleton. He previously won Album for his first two solo albums, Traveller, awarded in 2015, and From A Room: Volume 1, awarded in 2017. Stapleton also receives his fourth consecutive nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year, a category he remains undefeated in, having won the past three years.

    DIERKS BENTLEY – THREE NOMINATIONS
    Album of the Year (The Mountain), Male Vocalist of the Year, Musical Event of the Year (“Burning Man”)

    Dierks Bentley earns his sixth career nomination for Album of the Year, alongside producers Ross Copperman, Jon Randall Stewart, and Arturo Buenahora Jr., while also marking his fifth consecutive nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year. He also lands a nod alongside Brothers Osborne for Musical Event of the Year for their collaboration “Burning Man,” Bentley’s third nomination in the category. He won Musical Event in 2016 for his song “Different For Girls” (Feat. Elle King). With this year’s nominations, Bentley collects 24 total career nominations.

    KEITH URBAN – THREE NOMINATIONS
    Entertainer of the Year, Album of the Year (Graffiti U), Male Vocalist of the Year

    This year marks Keith Urban’s 14th nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year, 11th nomination in the Entertainer of the Year category, and his sixth nomination in the Album of the Year category for Graffiti U, bringing his career nominations to 45 with 11 total wins. Urban shares the nomination with the album’s producers Dan McCarroll, J.R. Rotem, Josh Kerr, Jason Evigan, Greg Wells, Benny Blanco, Ed Sheeran, Johnny McDaid, Jesse Shatkin, Jimmy Robbins, Oscar Holter, Matt Rad, Eric Valentine, Ian Kirkpatrick, Mike Elizondo, Captain Cuts, Copperman, Huff, and Peter Karlsson. Urban is the reigning Single of the Year winner for his song “Blue Ain’t Your Color,” which he also produced.

    The 52nd Annual CMA Awards, hosted by Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, will be broadcast live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena November 14th at 8pm ET on ABC.

    For more information and a full list of nominees, visit CMAawards.com.

    The Final Nominees for “The 52nd Annual CMA Awards” (by ballot category order):

    ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
    Jason Aldean
    Luke Bryan
    Kenny Chesney
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban

    SINGLE OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist, Producer(s), and Mix Engineer(s))

    Broken Halos – Chris Stapleton
    Producer(s): Dave Cobb, Chris Stapleton
    Mix Engineer(s): Vance Powell

    Drinkin’ Problem – Midland
    Producer(s): Dann Huff, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
    Mix Engineer(s): Justin Niebank

    Drowns the Whiskey – Jason Aldean (Feat. Miranda Lambert)
    Producer(s): Michael Knox
    Mix Engineer(s): Jeff Braun

    Meant to Be – Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line
    Producer(s): Willshire
    Mix Engineer(s): Serban Ghenea

    Tequila – Dan + Shay
    Producer(s): Scott Hendricks, Dan Smyers
    Mix Engineer(s): Jeff Juliano

    ALBUM OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist and Producer(s))

    From a Room: Volume 2Chris Stapleton
    Golden HourKacey Musgraves
    Graffiti UKeith Urban
    Life ChangesThomas Rhett
    The MountainDierks Bentley

    SONG OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Songwriter(s))

    “Body Like A Back Road”
    Songwriters: Zach Crowell, Sam Hunt, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne

    “Broken Halos”
    Songwriters: Mike Henderson, Chris Stapleton

    “Drowns the Whiskey”
    Songwriter: Brandon Kinney, Jeff Middleton, Josh Thompson

    “Drunk Girl”
    Songwriter: Scooter Carusoe, Tom Douglas, Chris Janson

    “Tequila”
    Songwriter: Nicolle Galyon, Jordan Reynolds, Dan Smyers

    FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
    Kelsea Ballerini
    Miranda Lambert
    Kacey Musgraves
    Maren Morris
    Carrie Underwood

    MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
    Dierks Bentley
    Luke Combs
    Thomas Rhett
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban

    VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
    Lady Antebellum
    Lanco
    Little Big Town
    Midland
    Old Dominion

    VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
    Brothers Osborne
    Dan + Shay
    Florida Georgia Line
    Maddie & Tae
    Sugarland

    MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to each Artist)

    “Burning Man” – Dierks Bentley Feat. Brothers Osborne
    “Dear Hate” – Maren Morris (Feat. Vince Gill)
    “Drowns the Whiskey” – Jason Aldean (Feat. Miranda Lambert)
    “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” – David Lee Murphy (with Kenny Chesney)
    “Meant to Be” – Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line

    MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist and Director(s))

    “Babe” – Sugarland (Featuring Taylor Swift)
    Director: Anthony Mandler

    “Cry Pretty” – Carrie Underwood
    Director: Randee St. Nicholas

    “Drunk Girl” – Chris Janson
    Director: Jeff Venable

    “Marry Me” – Thomas Rhett
    Director: TK McKamy

    “Tequila” – Dan + Shay
    Director: Patrick Tracy

    NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR
    Lauren Alaina
    Luke Combs
    Chris Janson
    Midland
    Brett Young

    MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR
    Jerry Douglas, Dobro
    Paul Franklin, Steel Guitar
    Dann Huff, Guitar
    Mac McAnally, Guitar
    Derek Wells, Guitar

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Audio / LUKE BRYAN SAY WINNING HIS FIRST CMA ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR AWARD CHANGED HIS LIFE.

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    Luke Bryan (winning 1st CMA Entertainer of the Year) OC: …big deal for me. :55
    “Definitely looking back and winning my first CMA Entertainer of the Year award is something that I’ll never forget. It’s all of those memories of everything it took to get here and all the sacrifices and all the honkytonks and the late-night concerts and moving to Nashville and leaving your family and your friends, it all came together on that night. To get that from your peers of fellow country music artists was pretty amazing. You never forget it. You forever feel vindicated and you feel appreciated and you feel like you’re a member of a club, and you know no matter how long you live that you left an indelible mark on this industry based on how you go about it, how you entertain and perform. It was a big deal for me.”

    Audio / KEITH URBAN PICKED UP HIS FIRST CMA MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR AWARD IN 2004, AND HE SAYS IT WAS A HUMBLING EXPERIENCE FOR HIM. HE WENT ON TO WIN THAT AWARD IN 2005 AND 2006.

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    Keith Urban (winning 1st Male Vocalist award) OC: …my life. :27
    “In 2004, I won Male Vocalist of the Year, and again it was that same feeling I had when I’d won the Horizon Award, but it was like the next level.  It just felt so humbling really. Really to be in that category and then to win was again just one of those sort of moments that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”

    Audio / Keith Urban explains why he felt the need to name his CMA nominated album, Graffiti U.

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    Keith Urban (Graffiti U name) OC: …that to me. :53
    “The previous two albums I did – Fuse and Ripcord – denoted a kind of energy, and so those titles were chosen for that. And I had some energy-driven titles in mind for this album too, but as the record started to reveal itself to me, the word ‘graffiti’ kept coming to me out of the blue. I’ve always loved that word, loved the sound of the word, and then I loved the fact that it’s art-driven. When I think of graffiti, I think of self-expression, personal expression, absolutely personal expression whether you’re painting something on the side of a building in a city or whether you’re painting ‘Billy Bob Loves Charlene’ on the side of an overpass [laughs], it’s all graffiti and it’s all free and pure and very personal, and I thought this record feels like that to me.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley was inspired by Telluride to write and record his CMA nominated album, The Mountain.

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    Dierks Bentley (album inspired by Telluride) 2 OC: …it was magic. :53
    “I just had this crazy idea to bring some songwriters out there and let them go for hikes and walk around town and just hang and see if they can sense that same intangible vibe that I was sensing, and they did. We jumped right into it and it was really, really special. And everyone immediately starts talking about how can we start getting back out here again, because it’s one of those places you just like never want to leave. Ross said, ‘We should come back out here to make the record,’ and we all kinda laughed about it, but it planted the seed. So, I came back a few months later with a different set of guys and girls, musicians, and we recorded the album out there.” It’s one of those things where you just kind of follow your gut, just keep your heart open to ideas and see what you’re feeling, and once you get that little, tiny feeling, you’ve got to go for it, just like that gut instinct of I want to be a country singer. It’s that little seed that if you believe in it, you’ve got to go for it, try it, so that’s what we did with this album, and it was magic.”

    Audio / Kacey Musgraves talks about the title of her CMA nominated album, Golden Hour.

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    Kacey Musgraves (Golden Hour title) OC: …this record. :34
    “The title Golden Hour just seemed to sum up this chapter of my life perfectly. I mean not only am I from a town called Golden, Texas, but leading up to making this record, there’s been a lot of beauty in my atmosphere and in my world. I love the picture that pops in my head when I hear that title. It’s also an actual song on the record, but it’s just this warm, golden feeling that I’m really happy to have in my life, and I found it to be the perfect title for this record.”

  • THE CMA FEST TELEVISION SPECIAL, FEATURING SOME OF THE HOTTEST PERFORMANCES OF THE YEAR, AIRS WEDNESDAY ON ABC.

    Many of your favorite country stars will be featured on ABC’s three-hour special, CMA Fest on Wednesday (August 8th). The concert special was taped during this year’s CMA Music Festival in downtown Nashville in June. For fans who weren’t able to attend, or if you want to revisit the amazing time you had, you can watch Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban, Dierks Bentley, Sam Hunt and Chris Stapleton, among others, perform on the stage at Nissan Stadium (home of the Tennessee Titans).

    “I’ve always been the type of artist when I can perform my music for a television audience, it’s the best of both worlds. You get to be in people’s households and they get to always put the face with the song,” says Luke. “I mean, this is like a big, awards-show-type crowd in August and yeah, it’s very important. You don’t want to go out there and lay an egg. You want to go put a great show on, because the fans that are in the room, they’re gonna go watch it again in August. And another thing — it’s gonna make people that may not have been to this festival, they’re gonna want to come be a part of that. So, it’s been fun watching CMA Music Fest grow to where it’s sold out every night, and that’s because we put a cool thing to watch on TV together for the fans.”

    The CMA Fest special, hosted by Thomas Rhett and Kelsea Ballerini, airs Wednesday (August 8t) beginning at 8pm ET on ABC.

    Audio / Luke Bryan talks about the CMA Fest television special and how much he enjoys performing on it.

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    Luke Bryan (CMA Music Festival TV) OC: …for the fans. 1:00
    “I’ve always been the type of artist when I can perform my music for a television audience, it’s the best of both worlds. You get to be in people’s households and they get to always put the face with the song. I mean, that used to be a big deal in my career, in my early career, we had to make sure that the people watching at home put it together that this crazy guy was singing in the song. I mean, this is like a big, awards-show-type crowd in August and yeah, it’s very important. You don’t want to go out there and lay an egg. You want to go put a great show on, because the fans that are in the room, they’re gonna go watch it again in August. And another thing — it’s gonna make people that may not have been to this festival, they’re gonna want to come be a part of that. So it’s been fun watching CMA Music Fest grow to where it’s sold out every night, and that’s because we put a cool thing to watch on TV together for the fans.”

    Audio / Keith Urban says he tries to show up and perform on CMA Music Fest every year because of the fans.

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    Keith Urban (CMA Fest TV) OC: …it’s my tribe. :15
    “Well, number one, for the fans, who come from all over the world to be here, and it’s an amazing week for them. But for me personally too, I love the work that all of the CMA Board and all of the Foundation do. You know, they’ve been very good to me over the years, and it’s my tribe.”

    Audio / Carrie Underwood talks about CMA Music Fest.

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    Carrie Underwood (CMA Music Festival) OC: …when they’re here. 1:05
    “CMA Music Festival is so much fun, and every year they do a TV special, which is really cool. We kind of get to give the rest of the world that didn’t get to come to the Music Fest a little taste of what it’s like and hopefully they’ll see it and want to come next year. But CMA Music Fest is so much fun. No other genre of music does what country music does for their fans like this, which is so cool. There are literally like hundreds of thousands of people that like descend on Nashville, and there’s not a hotel to be found. Everywhere you go there’s people looking for music and looking to see artists and fan club parties and charity events and the CMT Music Awards are that week. It’s a lot of fun, and it’s kind of a way to get to interact and give back and meet the people that have been coming to see you on tour and get to say thank you. It’s just a blast. I came as a kid growing up a couple of times, and it’s cool to be on that side of things and now to be on this side of things, but I think everybody just has a lot of fun when they’re here.”

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  • CHRIS STAPLETON HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE LIST OF PERFORMERS, KIP MOORE A PRESENTER AT THIS YEAR’S ACM HONORS.

    Chris Stapleton joins the lineup of performers for this year’s ACM Honors, hosted by Jon Pardi and Lauren Alaina, taking place at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium August 22nd. Kip Moore has been added as a presenter, along with Ricky Skaggs and radio personality Bobby Bones.

    Chris joins previously announced performers including Lauren, Kassi Ashton, Cam, Deana Carter, Morgan Evans, Dustin Lynch, Ashley McBryde, Old Crow Medicine Show, Pardi and songwriters Dallas Davidson & Ben Hayslip. Jordan Davis, Lindsay Ell, Lori McKenna and Storme Warren are presenters.

    As previously announced, Special Award recipients to be celebrated at the 12th Annual ACM Honors include Dierks Bentley (ACM Merle Haggard Spirit Award), Matraca Berg (ACM Poet’s Award), Sam Hunt (ACM Gene Weed Milestone Award), Alan Jackson (ACM Cliffie Stone Icon Award), Darius Rucker (ACM Gary Haber Lifting Lives Award),Mickey & Chris Christensen and Eddie Miller (ACM Mae Boren Axton Service Award, all awarded posthumously), Rob Potts (ACM Jim Reeves International Award, awarded posthumously), and Norro Wilson (ACM Poet’s Award, awarded posthumously). The evening will also honor winners of the Industry and Studio Recording Awards, along with Songwriter of the Year Award winner, Rhett Akins.

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Chris, Kacey, Keith, Luke

    Chris Stapleton and Kacey Musgraves have been added to the lineup for this year’s Farm Aid. The 33rd annual event will also feature performances by the Farm AID board of directors Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews as well as Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price. Tickets for this year’s event, taking place September 22nd at the Xfinity Theatre in Hartford, Connecticut, go on sale Friday (June 29th) at 10am ET.

    Keith Urban performs on NBC’s Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Tuesday night (June 26th). Shaquille O’Neal and Jenna Dewan will also appear on the show, which airs at 11:35a ET.

    Luke Bryan will reunite with his American Idol co-star on ABC’s Live With Kelly and Ryan on Wednesday (June 27th). Adam Sandler (The Wedding Singer, Grown Ups, The Waterboy, Happy Gilmore) and Winston Duke (Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War) are also scheduled guests on the show.

  • CHRIS STAPLETON IS FLYING HIGH WITH THE EAGLES.

    Chris Stapleton will open for the Eagles on Saturday (June 23rd) in Dallas, and he couldn’t be more thrilled to share the stage with the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers again (he played a show with them in Houston last week).

    “One of the greatest shows I ever went to in my life was The Eagles’ Hell Freezes Over Tour in ’95?,” recalls Chris. “My memory of it is [that] I went there, I saved all my money and I bought me and my brother a ticket, and it was at the Charleston Civic Center in West Virginia in1995. I was 17, 16, 17, and we drove the four hours from my hometown to go watch that show, and they played for four hours. They played all the Eagles hits, and then they took turns singing all their solo stuff with the Eagles as the backup band. So, I don’t think you could ask for much more out of a show. And it was flawless, every piece of it was flawless.”

    He adds, “So, to get to go play a show with those guys, and I know they lost Glenn Frey and I’m real sad about that, but Vince is in the band now and I know vince pretty well, and I’m excited to play with all those guys. Really cool.”

    Before he plays Saturday’s show, he’s taking his All American Road Show tour to Rogers, Arkansas on Friday (June 22nd).

    Chris is climbing the country charts with his latest song, “Millionaire,” which is from his award-winning album, From A Room: Volume 2.

    Audio / Chris Stapleton is thrilled to open a few dates for the legendary Eagles, who he says put on one of the best concerts in his life when he was 16 or 17 years old.

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    Chris Stapleton (Eagles) OC: …really cool. :51
    “One of the greatest shows I ever went to in my life was The Eagles’ Hell Freezes Over Tour in ’95?…My memory of it is [that] I went there, I saved all my money and I bought me and my brother a ticket, and it was at the Charleston Civic Center in West Virginia in1995. I was 17, 16, 17, and we drove the four hours from my hometown to go watch that show, and they played for four hours. They played all the Eagles hits, and then they took turns singing all their solo stuff with the Eagles as the backup band. So, I don’t think you could ask for much more out of a show. And it was flawless, every piece of it was flawless. So, to get to go play a show with those guys, and I know they lost Glenn Frey and I’m real sad about that, but Vince is in the band now and I know Vince pretty well, and I’m excited to play with all those guys. Really cool.”

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Dierks, Keith, Carrie, Lauren, Jon, Chris

    Dierks Bentley will perform on NBC’s Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon Wednesday (June 13th).

    Keith Urban will be joined by Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson and Ricky Martin on this year’s Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular. The two-hour show will air from New York City on July 4th at 8pm ET on NBC.

    Carrie Underwood will perform at Spotify’s first-ever Hot Country Live show on July 4th in New York at Pier 17. Tickets go on sale Friday (June 15th).

    Lauren Alaina and Jon Pardi will host this year’s ACM Honors at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium August 22nd. Tickets go on this Friday (June 15th). Honorees include Dierks Bentley, Alan Jackson, Darius Rucker and Rhett Akins.

    Justin Timberlake’s song with Chris Stapleton, “Say Something,” has been honored for a Teen Choice Award for Male Artist, while Carrie Underwood is nominated for Choice Country Artist. The Teen Choice Awards will air live from The Forum in Los Angeles August 12th on FOX. Voting is open now.

  • BILLBOARD MUSIC AWARDS: Chris, Luke, Sam, Alan

    The Billboard Music Awards took place Sunday night (May 20th), and a  of your favorite country artists went home with trophies

    Chris Stapleton won the Top Country Album Award for From A Room: Volume 1, and he also won the award for Top Country Male Artist.

    https://twitter.com/UMGNashville/status/998293563640307713

    Luke Bryan took home the award for Top Country Tour.

    Sam Hunt picked up the award for Top Country Song for the multi-platinum, “Body Like a Back Road.”

    Alan Jackson won for Top Christian Album for his Precious Memories Collection.

     

     

  • CHRIS STAPLETON EARNS SOME HEAVY METAL.

    Chris Stapleton got some great news this week. His 2015 album, Traveller, was just certified triple platinum by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America), while From A Room: Volume 1 has been certified platinum and From A Room: Volume 2 has gone gold.

    When making albums, Chris wants them to be good, from top to bottom. “We’re all incredibly fortunate that out on the road that the people who come out to the shows dig that deep. It sure is a powerful thing when you can pull out an album cut and have everybody sing along and have somebody be excited about it or watch that be somebody’s song they were hoping you were going to play that night,” he says. “I care about the album, quite a bit, and I kind of learned that from Tom Petty. He made my favorite record of all time, which was Wild Flowers, and that album really made me appreciate the album, top to bottom. I try to think about that record a lot when I’m making records, and that’s the way I feel about albums. I want them to be good, top to bottom.”

    The ACM and CMA Male Vocalist of the Year (among other awards) recently released his latest song, “Millionaire,” which is featured on his newly minted gold album, From A Room: Volume 2.

    Chris will hit the road with his 2018 All-American Road Show Tour, featuring Marty Stuart and Brent Cobb, beginning June 16th in Brandon, Mississippi. He’s also set to do a few shows before then, including CMA Music Fest, as well as a handful of shows with The Eagles.

    Audio / Chris Stapleton talks about making records.

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    Chris Stapleton (making records) OC: …top to bottom. :3
    “We’re all incredibly fortunate that out on the road that the people who come out to the shows dig that deep. It sure is a powerful thing when you can pull out an album cut and have everybody sing along and have somebody be excited about it or watch that be somebody’s song they were hoping you were going to play that night. I care about the album, quite a bit, and I kind of learned that from Tom Petty. He made my favorite record of all time, which was Wild Flowers, and that album really made me appreciate the album, top to bottom. I try to think about that record a lot when I’m making records, and that’s the way I feel about albums. I want them to be good, top to bottom.”

  • CHRIS STAPLETON WINS TWO ACM AWARDS.

    Chris Stapleton picked up the ACM awards for Male Vocalist and Album of the Year for From A Room: Volume 1, which features his first No. 1 song (“Broken Halos”) as an artist. While Sugarland explained he’s back in Nashville with wife Morgane, who was expecting twins and couldn’t make it to Las Vegas for the ACM Awards show, Reba interrupted to explain the twin boys came early. Mom, brother and sister and the baby boys are all doing well.

    Chris released the collection of songs in May of last year. The album takes its name from Nashville’s historic RCA Studio A, where it was recorded with Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb.

    “That whole room is a sweet spot,” says Chris. “The thing to know about that room is that room sounds like that room. I’m also a fan of studios that have a sound. Over time, there have been places that have sounds, you know, Capitol out in L.A. or Muscle Shoals. You can point to places that have sounds – Stax, Motown – these places have sounds, not just by the guys playing ‘em, but the actual sound of the room. The room’s become part of the band. Here in town, the place that has the most of that kind of mojo to me is that room, so that’s what I like about it.”

    Audio / Chris Stapleton explains how he decided to name his award-winning album, From A Room: Volume 1 after RCA Studio A.

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    Chris Stapleton (From A Room studio) OC: …about it. :38
    “That whole room is a sweet spot. The thing to know about that room is that room sounds like that room. I’m also a fan of studios that have a sound. Over time, there have been places that have sounds, you know, Capitol out in L.A. or Muscle Shoals. You can point to places that have sounds – Stax, Motown – these places have sounds, not just by the guys playing ‘em, but the actual sound of the room. The room’s become part of the band. Here in town, the place that has the most of that kind of mojo to me is that room, so that’s what I like about it.”

  • ACM AWARDS 2018: A LOOK AHEAD

    The ACM Awards are taking place a few days from now, and the show is promising to be inspiring, entertaining and poignant.

    Going into Sunday night’s show, Chris Stapleton leads the list of nominees with eight nods in five categories, including Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Single of the Year for “Broken Halos,” Song of the Year for “Whiskey and You” and Album of the Year for From a Room, Vol. 1. He’s won numerous awards over the past few years, and while he’s grateful for every single trophy he takes home, he has a special affinity for the Album categories.

    “They are all significant and if you get one award for anything it’s a treat. But any of the awards that awarded the album, the album awards, because I really wanted to make an album that was good,” says Chris. “I wanted that to be a thing, again, more than I wanted it to be, ‘Well here’s the single and eight other songs.’ So, the album awards for me were important in that we did our job in a good way, you know. Just I have such an affinity for albums that I don’t know if I want those more or if they mean more, but they are all meaningful.”

    Luke Bryan has won a handful of ACM Awards over his career, including the New Artist of the Year Award in 2010 following it up with two Entertainer Awards just a few years later. He tells us he is honored to be included in that category. “[I’m] so honored to have another Entertainer of the Year nomination and I always think about winning my first Entertainer of the Year [Award] at the ACMs,” he says. “To go to the ACMs knowing that you’re one of those lucky people that have that nomination, it just tells me that I’m doing all I can and doing the right things out on the road and hopefully, the fans are still loving what I’m trying to give to them every night.”

    Keith Urban has quite the plethora of nods going into this year’s ACM Awards, including Entertainer of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Song of the Year for “Female”  and twice, as both artist and producer in the Vocal Event of the Year category for “The Fighter” (featuring Carrie Underwood). Urban won Top New Male Vocalist of the Year in 2000, and Top Male Vocalist of the Year in 2004 and 2005.

    Keith’s “Female” was nominated for Song of the Year. The Top 10 hit was written by Nicolle Galyon, Shane McAnally and Ross Copperman, and he said he just had a feel that he needed to record the song and let everyone hear it. “The song spoke to me. It just spoke to me,” said Keith. “As I was singing it, I thought I feel like I’ve known this song my whole life. Something else was going on with it how it felt to me. So, I love it. I believe in it. I didn’t record it for any other reason than it was a heart reaction that I had to it.”

    In addition to Vocal Event of the Year for “The Fighter” with Keith Urban, Carrie Underwood, is also nominated in the Female Vocalist of the Year category.

    Lauren Alaina was announced as the Top New Female Vocalist of the Year a couple of weeks ago, and she still gets emotional talking about the “love” and recognition she has received from her peers and industry insiders.

    Previously announced ACM Awards performers include Carrie Underwood, Lauren AlainaJason Aldean, Kelsea Ballerini, Dierks Bentley, Kane Brown, Luke BryanKenny ChesneyKelly ClarksonFlorida Georgia LineAlan Jackson, Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town, Midland,Maren Morris, Jon Pardi, Bebe RexhaThomas RhettBlake Shelton, Keith Urban and Brett Young.

    The 53rd annual Academy of Country Music Awards will broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas April 15th at 8pm ET on CBS.

    The nominees for this year’s ACM Awards:

    Entertainer of the Year
    Jason Aldean
    Garth Brooks
    Luke Bryan
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban

    Male Vocalist of the Year
    Jason Aldean
    Thomas Rhett
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban
    Chris Young

    Female Vocalist of the Year
    Kelsea Ballerini
    Miranda Lambert
    Maren Morris
    Carrie Underwood
    Reba McEntire

    Vocal Duo of the Year
    Brothers Osborne
    Dan + Shay
    Florida Georgia Line
    LoCash
    Tim McGraw and Faith Hill

    Vocal Group of the Year
    Lady Antebellum
    Lanco
    Little Big Town
    Midland
    Old Dominion
    Song of the Year
    Sam Hunt, “Body Like a Back Road”
    Keith Urban, “Female”
    Miranda Lambert, “Tin Man”
    Chris Stapleton, “Whiskey and You”

    Single of the Year
    “Better Man,” Little Big Town
    “Body Like a Back Road,” Sam Hunt
    “Broken Halos,” Chris Stapleton

    “Drinkin’ Problem,” Midland
    “I’ll Name the Dogs,” Blake Shelton

    Album of the Year
    Breaker, Little Big Town
    California Sunrise, Jon Pardi
    From A Room: Vol. 1, Chris Stapleton

    Happy Endings, Old Dominion
    Life Changes, Thomas Rhett

    Video of the Year
    “Black,” Dierks Bentley
    “It Ain’t My Fault,” Brothers Osborne
    “Legends,” Kelsea Ballerini
    “Marry Me,” Thomas Rhett
    “We Should Be Friends,” Miranda Lambert

    Vocal Event of the Year
    “Craving You,” Thomas Rhett f/Maren Morris
    “Dear Hate,” Maren Morris f/Vince Gill
    “(Funny) How Time Slips Away,” Glen Campbell and Willie Nelson
    “The Fighter,” Keith Urban f/Carrie Underwood
    “What Ifs,” Kane Brown f/Lauren Alaina

    The 53rd Annual ACM Awards, hosted by Reba McEntire, will broadcast live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas April 15th at 8pm ET on CBS.

    Audio / Chris Stapleton leads the list of nominees with eight nods in five categories including Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Single of the Year for “Broken Halos,” Song of the Year for “Whiskey and You” and Album of the Year for From a Room, Vol. 1.

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    Chris Stapleton (affinity for albums) OC: …any one of them. :45
    “They are all significant and if you get one award for anything it’s a treat. But any of the awards that awarded the album, the album awards, because I really wanted to make an album that was good. I wanted it, I wanted that to be a thing, again, more than I wanted it to be, ‘Well here’s the single and eight other songs.’ So, the album awards for me were important in that we did our job in a good way, you know. Just I have such an affinity for albums that I don’t know if I want those more or if they mean more, but they are all meaningful. They are all are things that one of them would feel like a career. One of them. Any one of them.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan, who took home the Entertainer Award twice, is always honored be nominated in that category.

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    Luke Bryan (ACM 2018 Entertainer nod)  OC: …work harder. [laughs] :39
    “[I’m] so honored to have another Entertainer of the Year nomination and I always think about winning my first Entertainer of the Year [Award] at the ACMs. To go to the ACMs knowing that you’re one of those lucky people that have that nomination, it just tells me that I’m doing all I can and doing the right things out on the road and hopefully, the fans are still loving what I’m trying to give to them every night. You don’t want to say the same clichés about it’s an honor to be nominated, it is! The day that I don’t get nominated for stuff like that, then I’ll kinda be sad and I’ll be motivated to work harder.” [laughs]

    Audio / Lauren Alaina talks about what the ACM New Female Vocalist of the Year Award means to her.

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    Lauren Alaina (New Female Vocalist reaction) OC: …and achievement. :39
    “You know, this is like a really rewarding moment for everyone on my team, because we have been fighting for so long and I just feel like we all won this award. [tears] Oh Gosh! Like Whew! I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I don’t know, I guess we’ve been at this for 8 years, 7 years? 7 years. And it’s just a big accomplishment to be able to start over and build it brick by brick and for it to be recognized by the people that we trust and respect to know music is the next level of love and achievement.”

    Audio / Keith Urban says he just felt he needed to record the song “Female.”

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    Keith Urban (Female feeling) OC: …had to it. :42
    “It’s a feeling. It’s more of a feeling. It’s not as cerebral for me, the song spoke to me. It just spoke to me. When I went down into the studio to put a vocal on it; my intention was to put a vocal on the demo. I called Ross Copperman and I said, ‘Can you send me the track that you recorded and leave the vocal off, and I’ll go down to my studio and I’ll sing over the top of it and I’ll see if this fits me because it feels really right.’ And I went down and I sang it, and as I was singing it, I thought I feel like I’ve known this song my whole life. Something else was going on with it how it felt to me. So, I love it. I believe in it.  I didn’t record it for any other reason than it was a heart reaction that I had to it.”