The Academy of Country Music Awards have announced a second round of performers who will take the stage for the 54th annual event: Dierks Bentley, Brooks and Dunn, Brandi Carlile, Eric Church, Kelly Clarkson, Luke Combs, Dan and Shay, Florida Georgia Line and Ashley McBryde. You can see them all when the awards are handed out live on April 7 on CBS.
Carlile and Dan and Shay are fresh off their first ever Grammy wins. Carlile earned surprise nominations for Album of the Year (“By the Way, I Forgive You”), Record of the Year (“The Joke”) and Song of the Year (also “The Joke”), and she swept her genre categories with three victories in the American Roots field. Meanwhile, Dan and Shay earned the first ever nomination and first ever win: Best Country Duo/Group Performance for “Tequila.”
The ACM Awards have never nominated Carlile for any awards; she’s not a country artist, per se, though her brand of folk rock is a comfortable fit on a country stage with the likes of Miranda Lambert and Chris Stapleton. But Dan and Shay are ACM nominees this year, the biggest ACM nominees in fact. They duo has a leading six nominations (tied with Stapleton), including Single of the Year, Song of the Year and Video of the Year for their Grammy-winning “Tequila.”
Like Carlile, Clarkson isn’t a country artist, but she is a past ACM winner for her country crossover collaborations. She previously claimed Single of the Year and Musical Event of the Year for “Don’t You Wanna Stay” with Jason Aldean, and she’s nominated for Musical Event again this year for teaming up with Dan and Shay on “Keeping Score.”
Bentley, a two-time past host of the ACM Awards, is up for four awards including Male Artist of the Year. The duo Florida Georgia Line also has four bids, including a trio of noms for their chart-topping crossover hit “Meant to Be” with Bebe Rexha. Church is up for Album of the Year for “Desperate Man.”
Combs and McBryde are both newcomers coming off their own Grammy breakthroughs this year. Combs earned a Grammy bid for Best New Artist, and now he’s nominated for Male Artist and New Male Artist of the Year at the ACMs. Meanwhile, McBryde picked up a Grammy bid for Best Country Album (“Girl Going Nowhere”) and now ACM noms for Female Artist and New Female Artist of the Year.
These performers join previously announced artists including Brothers Osborne, Kane Brown, Lambert, Little Big Town, Reba McEntire, Maren Morris, Thomas Rhett, Stapleton and George Strait, along with the aforementioned Aldean, who will receive the Artist of the Decade award in addition to performing.
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