• Chris Stapleton

Bio

Universal Music Group Nashville recording artist and three-time GRAMMY nominee Chris Stapleton is an established songwriter with five No. one hits already under his belt including the five-week No. one “Never Wanted Nothing More” recorded by Kenny Chesney, “Love’s Gonna Make it Alright” recorded by George Strait, and “Drink A Beer” recorded by Luke Bryan.  As a writer for Sea Gayle Music Publishing, Stapleton has penned over 170 album cuts, including songs recorded by Adele, Tim McGraw, Brad Paisley and Dierks Bentley, and has such notable co-writers as Vince Gill, Peter Frampton and Sheryl Crow among others.  Additionally, Stapleton has shared the stage with such respected artists as Vince Gill, Alison Krauss, Marty Stuart, Emmy Lou Harris and more.

As lead vocalist for critically acclaimed bluegrass band The SteelDrivers, Stapleton earned three GRAMMY nominations including Best Bluegrass Album, as well as an International Bluegrass Music Association Award for Emerging Artist of the Year.  He’s won six ASCAP Awards and has contributed to the soundtracks of several feature films including “Cars 2” and “Valentine’s Day.”
Stapleton is currently working on his first solo studio album for Universal Music Group Nashville.

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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.

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