Then. Now. Forever Country, Has been the catch phrase used to describe the CMA Awards for most of this year and they delivered tonight! The 50th annual broadcast kicked off with stars of the past and present joining together on legendary songs.
Vince Gill started the show off on a sober note singing a tribute to Merle Haggard who passed away earlier this year with Haggard’s son Ben Haggard on guitar.
Then came host Brad Paisley with Roy Clark from Hee Haw fame. They launched into “Pickin’ and Grinning.” CMA award host Carrie Underwood belted out the Tammy Wynette classic “Stand By Your Man.” Charlie Pride joined Paisley for Pride’s song “Kiss An Angel Good Morning.” Alabama kept the nostalgia going with their song “Mountain Music.”
Paisley and Charlie Daniels team up on Daniels’s hit “Devil went down to Georgia.” Following Paisley and Daniels were Reba McEntire , Dwight Yoakam and Clint Black all singing their own songs! Wrapping up the opening performances was Ricky Skaggs and Paisley dueling guitars on Skaggs’s Song “Country Boy At Heart” then Alan Jackson brought 90’s country back to life with his hit “Don’t Rock The Juke Box.”
All through the opening numbers as an artist finished they stayed on the stage but moved to the background which led to the magical moment that took place at the end of the opening number. Paisley and Underwood brought Randy Travis to the stage and sang his hit song “Forever and Ever Amen” with Travis finishing the song out with the very last word Amen which was a miracle in its self since just a few months ago it was believed Travis would never sing again because of a stroke he suffered in 2013.
The opening performance set the stage for the entire show which was an amazing walk down memory lane as well as a look what the future holds. The 50th annual CMA Awards from Nashville, TN saw many amazing team ups and moments that will for sure be remembered for years to come. The show featured performances by Brooks & Dunn with Superstar Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line with Tim McGraw, and Dierks Bentley and Elle King with their hit song “Different for Girls.”
Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood sang a melody of hits from years past including some iconic duets from some of country music’s greatest couples! Also Joining forces were Alan Jackson and George Strait who sang their songs “Remember When” and “Troubadour” which were used for the in memoriam portion of the awards show, which honored the memories of the stars that have passed on. Tonight’s award show also saw superstar Beyoncé joining The Dixie Chicks on the CMA Awards Stage!
As always there was plenty of jokes and songs from hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, as always no topic was off-limits. There was jokes about the election, drinks named after artists, Willie Nelson‘s hobbies and of course there was some Tim McGraw and Faith Hill jokes.
While the night revolved around the country music of past, present and future it was also a night of honoring the accomplishments of many of the artist in attendance! This year’s awards saw a lot of artists taking home their first or second CMA awards as well as a country legend returning to the top!
The Winners of the 50th CMA Awards:
- Single of the Year –Thomas Rhett “Die A Happy Man”
- Song of the Year-“Humble and Kind” Lori McKenna
- Musical Event of the Year- “Different For Girls” — Dierks Bentley featuring Elle King
- New Artist of the Year- Maren Morris
- Musician of the Year- Dann Huff (guitar)
- Music Video of the Year- “Fire Away” — Chris Stapleton; directed by Tim Mattia
- Album Of The Year-Eric Church – Mr. Misunderstood.
- Vocal Duo Of The Year –Brothers Osbourne
- Vocal Group Of The Year- Little Big Town.
- Pinnacle Award-Kenny Chensey
- Female Vocalist Of The Year-Carrie Underwood
- Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award –Dolly Parton
- Male Vocalist of The Year- Chris Stapleton
- Entertainer Of They Year- Garth Brooks
The Entertainer of The Year Award was presented to Brooks by Taylor Swift who returns to the CMA Awards stage after being absent from the awards show since 2014 when she crossed over to Pop music full-time!
The 50th annual award show was truly a magical night full of memories of the past and Excitement of the future! Congratulations to all of the winners!