COUNTRY CHART Weekend of April 1-2:
2 JON PARDI Dirt On My Boots
3 LUKE BRYAN Fast
4 LAUREN ALAINA Road Less Traveled
5 JASON ALDEAN Any Ol’ Barstool
6 ERIC CHURCH Kill A Word
7 BRAD PAISLEY Today
8 KELSEA BALLERINI Yeah Boy
9 SAM HUNT Body Like a Back Road
10 JOSH TURNER Hometown Girl
11 BRANTLEY GILBERT The Weekend
12 CHRIS YOUNG Sober Saturday Night
13 KENNY CHESNEY Bar At The End of the World
14 DIERKS BENTLEY Black
15 LUKE COMBS Hurricane
16 DAN & SHAY How Not To
17 BRETT YOUNG In Case You Didn’t Know
18 DARIUS RUCKER If I Told You
19 TRENT HARMON There’s A Girl
20 RASCAL FLATTS Yours If You Want It
COUNTRY MUSIC NEWS!
Brett Eldredge Wins in Vegas With CMT Instant Jam
Concert Special Premieres June 23
Brett Eldredge‘s CMT Instant Jam live at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas served as a pre-party leading up to Sunday night’s (April 2) Academy of Country Music Awards.
Thousands of free wristbands to get into the pop-up event were distributed within minutes after Eldredge first announced their availability on social media hours before Thursday’s (March 30) show.
Premiering on June 23, the concert special will showcase Eldredge’s raw energy live with a wild mix of his five No. 1 singles, plus his current hit “Somethin’ I’m Good At” and additional songs from his new album set for release this summer.
Each Instant Jam features live performances and captures all the excitement and energy as artists reveal to fans how to score tickets to an exclusive show in their area, while giving a behind-the-scenes look at the hours leading up to their concert.
Previous Instant Jam specials have featured electric live performances by Dierks Bentley, Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood, Florida Georgia Line, Darius Rucker and Hunter Hayes.
Eldredge will perform on the ACM Awards show airing Sunday at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.
ACM Awards: Country Artists Prepare for the Party [Photos]
Kelsea Ballerini, Miranda Lambert and More Rehearse for the Main Event
The anticipation is building for the 52nd annual ACM Awards taking place live from Las Vegas Sunday (April 2). While it’s hard to guess who will walk away a winner with all the fierce competition, it’s easy to see the night will be filled with superstar performances. Take a look at photos from the rehearsals.
Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesMiranda Lambert
Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesCole Swindell and Dierks Bentley
Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesMaren Morris
Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesDierks Bentley
Kevin Winter/Getty ImagesCheck out more of CMT.com’s coverage of the 52nd annual ACM Awards.
Nominees Weigh In on ACM Awards Co-Hosts
CMT Hot 20 Countdown Previews a Big Night in Las Vegas
CMT Hot 20 Countdown is all about the 52nd annual Academy of Country Music Awards taking place Sunday (April 2) in Las Vegas.
Several nominees including Kelsea Ballerini, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum, Maren Morris and others will appear on the all-new episode and give a preview of what to expect from awards show co-hosts Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley.
“They’re both just so quick-witted and silly that I think it’ll just be like another kind of like lighthearted, fun energy in the room,” Ballerini said. She heads to the show with a performance slot and two nominations for female vocalist and video of the year for “Peter Pan.”
“Obviously, I remember seeing the first time Luke hosted,” Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley recalls. “He was a little nervous, but he’s such a pro now. And even Dierks did an amazing job that first year, but I know he’ll feel OK. I always look forward o the opening monologue to see what those two have got.”
“The banter between them,” Lady A member Hillary Scott adds, “they’re always picking on each other, and that always makes for some really great laughs. Dierks’ sense of humor is a lot drier than Luke’s. So to see that back-and-forth is always really entertaining.”
Lady A will perform their new single “You Look Good” on Sunday’s show and they’re also nominated for vocal group of the year — an award they’ve won three times since 2009.
The ACM’s new male vocalist Jon Pardi says to expect some new surprises unlike previous ceremonies.
“I talked to Dierks, and its gonna be good,” Pardi said. “It’s been fun ’cause I’m on tour with Dierks and he’s been talking about writing — they got some new writers and they’re getting all kinds of new fun stuff. So I think it’s going to be pretty entertaining.”
“They’re just going make what’s already the party of the year and make it more fun,” Brett Young says. “The fact that they’re buddies, have a similar sense of humors and that they’re at the top of country music right now, I think that just adds to the show.”
“They were hilarious last time,” Cam says. “I love Dierks. I got to go on tour with him last year. He’s one of my favorite people. They really are just good human beings. So, I think it’s fun to watch the two of them be hilarious.”
Cody Alan will also be in the studio with High Valley, Chris Janson and Kelleigh Bannen on the all-new Hot 20, airing Saturday (April 1) and Sunday (April 2) at 9 a.m. ET/PT. The countdown will also feature Young talking about his new hit, “In Case You Didn’t Know,” and RaeLynn in Houston, Texas, as she celebrates the release of her new album, WildHorse.
During an ACM press conference on Friday (March 31), Bentley and Bryan teased they will be doing a surprise collaboration with a rock icon to honor another rock icon during Sunday’s ACM Awards. The show starts at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.
Kelsea Ballerini Happy to Be in the ACM’s Female Vocalist Snapshot
"Such a Beautiful Thing," She Says
Earlier this week, CBS-TV tweeted a video of Kelsea Ballerini talking about what it means to her to be one of the five nominees for the Academy of Country Music’s female vocalist of the year award.
But not just in a cliche “it’s-an-honor-just-to-be-nominated” way.
Instead, Ballerini talks about her fellow nominees — Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, Maren Morris and Kacey Musgraves — and what the country music world is like right now because of them.
“To be a female in country music right now is such a beautiful thing, I think,” Ballerini says.
“And to be in that category with the big dogs — like with Carrie and Miranda and Kacey and Maren — it’s really cool to be able to be in this year’s snapshot of women with them,” she said.
The ACM Awards will air live from Las Vegas on Sunday (April 2) at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.
Jon Pardi Is Ready to Do the Obvious in Las Vegas
He's Already a Winner as He Heads to Sunday's ACM Awards
Jon Pardi has every reason to party in Las Vegas this weekend for Sunday’s (April 2) 52nd annual Academy of Country Music Awards.
He heads to the show already a winner as the reigning new male vocalist. It also marks the first time the California native heads to a major music award show with back-to-back No. 1 singles. His latest, “Dirt on My Boots,” held the No. 1 spot on Billboard‘s country airplay chart for three consecutive weeks.
“It’s always a good feeling to be recognized for something,” Pardi says in a new interview with the Academy of Country Music. “I’m just glad I’m still here, man. This will be my sixth ACMs to attend, so it feels good to be nominated, and I’m pretty happy.”
His favorite parts about being at the ACMs are people watching on the red carpet and cheering on fellow nominees in the audience.
“Everybody gets to dress up and look really nice,” Pardi said. “Girls look pretty, and I feel like in this day and age in country music, everybody’s rooting for everybody regardless of who’s nominated or who wins. Everybody’s got each other’s back.”
Pardi is among the acts performing one of two official after-parties following Sunday’s awards show. His set will be at the Park Theater at the Monte Carlo Resort and Casino with additional performances by Russell Dickerson, RaeLynn, Brothers Osborne, Tracy Lawrence, Clay Walker, Josh Turner, Chris Janson and Nashville’s Charles Esten. Tickets are available through the Party for a Cause website and support the organization’s charitable arm, ACM Lifting Lives.
Chris Stapleton to Premiere New Music Live on ACM Awards
Releases Next Album May 5
Editor’s Note: On Friday’s (March 31) CMT Hometown Heroes, Stapleton goes home to Paintsville, Kentucky to support the music program at his alma mater Johnson Central High School. The show premieres at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
Chris Stapleton‘s performance at Sunday’s (April 2) 52nd annual ACM Awards will mark the live television premiere of new music from his next album.
On Thursday (March 30), Stapleton revealed his next collection will be available on May 5 on the two-year anniversary of Traveller‘s release. A title for the upcoming album did not come with the announcement.
Winning multiple ACMs, CMAs and Grammys over the last two years, Stapleton has pretty much been a music award show staple since he swept the 49th annual CMA Awards in 2015. He heads to Sunday’s ACM ceremony with three nominations for male vocalist, song of the year for “Tennessee Whiskey” and video of the year for “Fire Away.”
Dierks Bentley and Luke Bryan co-host the ACMs live from Las Vegas at 8 p.m. ET on CBS.
Lady Antebellum Flashback to First ACM Win
Announce Heart Break Full Track Listing
The ACM Awards are more than a big deal to Lady Antebellum.
The first major music award they won was the 2008 ACM for new vocal duo or group, an honor they received from the year’s previous winners Little Big Town.
“I remember thinking our first single was barely out,” Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott recalls in a new ACM interview. “Our debut album was about to come out, and just to feel the country music community kind of wrap their arms around us, and make us feel welcome and for the ACM to give us that honor, I’ll never forget [that].”
This year will be no different. Not only does Scott turn 30 in Las Vegas on Saturday (April 1), they head to Sunday’s (April 2) show with a new nomination for vocal group of the year and they’re performing their rising single “You Look Good.”
“We weren’t really positive that we would be nominated this year because we have taken a little bit of a break,” Charles Kelley added. “But it’s really fun to kind of still feel the love you know from everybody … to you know go to the award show and know that you have a nomination, it really does make it so much more of a special night.”
The band just announced the full track listing for their sixth album, Heart Break, which lands June 9. Scott, Kelley and Dave Haywood each had in co-writing the collection, except for the lead single and “Hurt.” Producer busbee, Ryan Hurd and Grammy-winning hit-maker Hillary Lindsey co-wrote the lead single, “You Look Good.” “Hurt” was co-written by Jon Green, Melissa Peirce and Ben West.
Hitting 65 shows in six countries including South Africa, the band’s You Look Good World Tour starts May 26 in Bakersfield, California with Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Young.
Luke Bryan Says His Fingers Are Crossed
How the ACM Hosts Feel About Their Nominations
I think Dierks Bentley said it best when he said, “Nice to be nominated when you’re up there hosting.”
I mean, right?
It’s one thing to get a hosting gig, but quite another to get nominated. And to get both? Well, that’s the ultimate goal.
So when the Academy of Country Music posed the question to Bentley, he said that to be nominated for the album of the year felt amazing.
“To get that recognition, most importantly from the fans that go out there and buy that album, buy those singles, sing those songs back to you so loudly night after night; that’s the biggest recognition you can possibly get. But obviously getting the recognition from your peers and everyone in the business is really nice, too. So it’s nice to have both if you can get it,” Bentley said.
Bentley’s co-host Luke Bryan feels the same way about his nominations.
And he told the ACM that job No. 1 for him is to have more fun than anybody.
“I’m trying to have the most fun in the room. Just getting up there and interacting with the fans and not take the show too seriously,” Bryan said.
“But certainly, every time the nominations come around, you’re always keeping your fingers crossed for a nomination. And to get multiple entertainer of the year nominations is something you don’t ever take for granted.
“You’re still feeling like you’re kind of in the game a little bit,” he said.
Maren Morris: The ACM Before & After
The Move from Fan to Nominee
Last year, Maren Morris just felt like a fan.
“I remember sitting in the audience and I was with my boyfriend, Ryan Hurd,” Morris told the Academy of Country Music.
“We were just in awe of everything that goes into those shows, and just how cool it was to see all these songs representing in a visual way,” she said.
Morris says her favorite part if the ACM Awards is the performances. Obviously.
“I think it’s so cool, in a really high energy live setting, to see incredible artists bring their art to the masses in such a tight space. It’s harder than it looks. I’ve learned over the past few award shows how to make it look larger than life through a TV set,” she said.
At the 2016 ACM Awards, Morris followed Dolly Parton on the red carpet, and that made for a very special memory.
“Last year was my first ever red carpet, and I was behind Dolly Parton the whole carpet. So I was just sort of looking at how cute and tiny she was,” she said.