Back to news 07/29/13



Cheat Tweet: .@DierksBentley to host 7th Annual ACM Honors on Sept 10 at @TheRyman! Tickets on sale 8/2! Details at [insert your link here OR]@ACMawards

ENCINO, CA (July 29, 2013) – Today the Academy of Country Music is announcing that country music superstar Dierks Bentley will return to host the 7th Annual ACM HONORS, an evening dedicated to recognizing the special honorees and off-camera category winners from the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards.  The event will take place on Tuesday, September 10, 2013 at 7:00pm at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.  Tickets priced at $40.00 will go on sale to the public at and the Ryman box office at 8:00 AM PST on Friday, August 2, 2013. 

This is Bentley’s second consecutive time hosting the event and the fourth time the ceremony will be held at the Ryman Auditorium. The evening is sponsored in part by American Airlines, City National Bank and Spot Shot®.   

Those being honored include Special Award recipients Jason Aldean, Guy Clark, Blake Shelton, Tommy Wiggins, Lady Antebellum and The Judds. Keith Whitley and Hank Williams will also be honored posthumously.  The evening also recognizes winners of the MBI (musician, bandleader, instrumentalist) and Industry categories, which are not presented during the live telecast of the Academy of Country Music Awards.  In addition, Dallas Davidson will be recognized as the winner of Songwriter of the Year.

ACM Award winning singer/songwriter Dierks Bentley has forged his own artistic path in an industry built predominantly on formula. He has mixed elements of modern country, classic country, bluegrass and rock, maintaining an unmistakable identity while constantly reinventing his sound. His album HOME debuted at No. 1 and spawned three consecutive chart-topping hits, marking 10 career No. 1 songs for Bentley as a singer and songwriter. His five previous studio albums have sold more than five million copies, garnered 11 GRAMMY nominations and earned him an invitation to join the Grand Ole Opry. Bentley is currently in the studio working on his upcoming album RISER and is out on the Miranda Lambert and Dierks Bentley: Locked & Reloaded Tour through October.

“I really didn’t know what to expect last year when they asked me to host, but it was a total blast.  There are no cameras like there are at a regular award show, so anything goes,” said Bentley. “The ACM put together a really special show honoring some important people in our business, and I’m just glad I earned an invitation back…despite some of my off-script jokes!”

“Dierks set a new standard for ACM Honors hosts last year, approaching the event with both reverence for each honoree and with a shot of colorful humor – the fans responded to him and we are so excited to have him return this year,” said Lisa Lee, producer and writer for ACM Honors.  “His talent, passion and respect for country music make him ideally suited to host this unique Academy event.”

The Academy of Country Music Special Awards are voted on by the ACM Board of Directors and are awarded during years that the Board of Directors feels there are clear and deserving candidates. Honorees include:

  • Jason Aldean – Crystal Milestone Award
  • Guy Clark – Poet’s Award
  • Blake Shelton – Gene Weed Special Achievement Award
  • Keith Whitley (posthumously) – Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award
  • Tommy Wiggins – Mae Boren Axton Award
  • Hank Williams (posthumously) – Poet’s Award
  • Lady Antebellum – Jim Reeves International Award
  • The Judds – Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award

The winners of the Musician-Bandleader-Instrumentalist (MBI) awards are voted on by Academy of Country Music members classified in the Artist-Entertainer/MBI category and the Producer/Engineer/Studio Manager subcategory (contained within the Affiliated category) on the final ballot.  Honorees include:

  • Chuck Ainlay – Audio Engineer of the Year 
  • Matt Chamberlain – Percussionist/Drummer of the Year
  • J.T. Corenflos – Guitarist of the Year 
  • Aubrey Haynie – Fiddle Player of the Year 
  • Mike Johnson – Steel Guitar Player of the Year
  • Jay Joyce – Producer of the Year
  • Michael Rojas – Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year
  • Jimmie Lee Sloas – Bass Player of the Year 
  • Ilya Toshinsky – Specialty Instrument(s) Player of the Year

The winners of the Industry Awards categories are voted on by the membership of the Academy of Country Music on the third and final ballot.  Honorees include:

  • Jerry Hufford, Buck Owens’ Crystal Palace – Don Romeo Talent Buyer of the Year
  • Ed Warm, Joe’s Bar – Promoter of the Year
  • Joe’s Bar (Chicago, IL) – Nightclub of the Year  
  • Red Rock Casino & Resort (Las Vegas, NV) – Casino of the Year
  • Ryman Auditorium (Nashville, TN) – Venue of the Year  

The Songwriter of the Year Award winner is determined by a vote of Academy of Country Music members classified in the Artist-Entertainer/MBI, Composer, Music Publisher/PRO and Record Company and the Producer/Engineer/Studio Manager subcategory (contained within the Affiliated category) on the final ballot.  Honoree includes:

  • Dallas Davidson

For more information on the ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC and the ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS, please visit For information on ACM LIFTING LIVES, please visit