Miranda Lambert and Taylor Swift face off against four men — Jason Aldean, Toby Keith, Brad Paisley and Keith Urban — for the top prize of entertainer of the year at the 46th annual ACM Awards on April 3. Only Keith has won this award before with back-to-back victories in 2002 and 2003.
Reigning two-time champ Carrie Underwood was snubbed in this race which will be decided by online voting. With no new album out this year, Underwood earned only a single bid for Female Vocalist while Swift contends for three more awards besides Entertainer of the Year as both artist and producer of Album of the Year nominee “Speak Now” and for Female Vocalist.
Lambert and Ronnie Dunn announced the nominations from the Country Music Hall of Fame Museum in Nashville which were carried live on CBS’ “The Early Show.” Lambert’s fiance Blake Shelton — who contends for Male Vocalist and Video of the Year (“Hillbilly Bone featuring Trace Adkins) is co-hosting the kudos on CBS with Female Vocalist nominee Reba McEntire who returns to emcee for the 13th consecutive year.
Lambert is defending her Female Vocalist title and was also nominated for Single Record of the Year and Song of the Year for “The House That Built Me,” and received two nominations for Video of the Year for “Only Prettier” and “The House That Built Me” that pit her against Shelton. She also contends for Vocal Event of the Year with Sheryl Crow and Loretta Lynn for “Coal Miner’s Daughter.”
Four-time Entertainer of the Year Kenny Chesney (2004-2007) may have been dropped from that race, but leads among the menfolk with five nominations: Album of the Year for “Hemingway’s Whiskey” and Single Record of the Year for “The Boys of Fall,” both of which earned him bids as both artist and producer. He is also nominated for Video of the Year for “The Boys of Fall.”
Leading the groups is the Zac Brown Band with five bids: Album of the Year for “You Get What You Give,” Vocal Group, and Song, Single and Vocal Event of the Year for “As She’s Walking Away” featuring Alan Jackson. Zac Brown received four additional individual nominations as the producer of the band’s album, single and vocal event entries and as a composer for their song “As She’s Walking Away.”
For the full list of nominations and to vote visit the Academy of Country Music Awards website.