Chris Stapleton has been on a roll ever since the CMA Awards last November. He was the surprise winner of Album of the Year (“Traveller“) at that event and he also ended Blake Shelton‘s five-year winning streak for Male Vocalist of the Year. He followed that with a pair of Grammy wins in February, and now he’s hoping to end another winning streak at the ACMs – this time Jason Aldean‘s.
Aldean has won Male Vocalist at the ACMs for the last three years, and he’s one of only two nominees in this category who also contends for Entertainer of the Year – the other is Eric Church. But Stapleton is the man to beat according to the combined predictions of our Editors who cover awards year-round for Gold Derby, our Top 24 Users who had the highest scores predicting last year’s ACM winners and the hundreds of total Users who make up our largest and often savviest bloc of predictors.
There’s good reason to believe Stapleton has the edge. In just a few months he seems to have become country music’s ambassador to the rest of the music industry with his CMA sweep, his Grammy wins and now his numerous ACM noms. He’s actually the most nominated artist at these awards with seven total bids, including Album of the Year.
But he isn’t nominated for Entertainer of the Year. That didn’t hurt him at the CMAs last fall, but could it be a disadvantage here? One top user apiece is forecasting the two men who are up for that top prize: Church and Aldean.
Church is certainly no slouch at these awards: he’s right behind Stapleton with six nominations, and to date he’s a four-time ACM winner. Aldean, however, is only nominated for Entertainer of the Year and Male Vocalist. Since he has no other bids for an album, song or even a collaboration, maybe he really is the one at a disadvantage.
None of our top users are betting on the remaining two nominees in this race: Dierks Bentley and Brett Eldredge. None of our editors are predicting them either; all five of us – Chris Beachum, Marcus Dixon, Rob Licuria, Paul Sheehan and I – agree that Stapleton will prevail.
Do you agree that Stapleton will continue his remarkable awards romp, or are we underestimating the strength of one of his rivals?
Make your ACM Awards Awards predictions starting with Male Vocalist of the Year to the right or at the bottom of this post.
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Photo credits: ABC