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Entertainment News

Sunday, 4 November, 2007 12:24 PM

CMA Awards Airs Wednesday, Nov. 7, 8 - 11 p.m. on ABC-TV

PHOTO BY JOHN RUSSELL / CMA

Brad Paisley will perform on "The 41st Annual CMA Awards" on Nov. 7, 2007, broadcast live on ABC Television from the Sommet Center in Nashville, Tenn. Paisley is pictured performing on "The 40th Annual CMA Awards."

By Wendy Pearl
© 2007 CMA Close Up News Service

The final list of nominees for "The 41st Annual CMA Awards" covers the broadest spectrum of the format from traditionalists, Country Music hit makers and crossover innovators, with several fresh faces added to the mix.

"Country Music is thriving on the talent and creativity of an outstanding group of artists and they are well represented with our nominees," said CMA Chief Operating Officer Tammy Genovese. "These talented performers, musicians, songwriters, producers and directors demonstrate the artistic depth and creativity of our format. It is an exciting time for Country Music and the CMA Awards will definitely reflect that on Nov. 7."

"Since our inaugural broadcast of the Awards last year with the historic 40th anniversary, we've enjoyed a special and growing relationship with the Country Music Association as true partners to bring the very best of the country's music to ABC," said Vicki Dummer, Senior VP, Alternative Series, Specials and Late-Night, ABC Entertainment. "We're proud and honored to be the network that is home to the CMA Awards and we congratulate all of the outstanding nominees for their achievements."

"The 41st Annual CMA Awards" will broadcast live from the Sommet Center in Nashville on Wednesday, Nov. 7 (8-11PM/ET) on the ABC Television Network.

Brad Paisley and Country Music Hall of Fame member George Strait lead the list of nominees with five nominations each. Paisley was nominated for Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Album for 5th Gear (produced by Frank Rogers and Chris DuBois), Single for "Ticks" and Music Video of the Year for "Online," which was directed by actor-turned-video director Jason Alexander.

Strait received nominations for Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Album for It Just Comes Natural (co-produced by Tony Brown), Musical Event with Jimmy Buffett and Alan Jackson on the live version of "Hey Good Lookin'" and Single of the Year for "Wrapped." Strait could win two additional trophies as producer for Single and Album of the Year. Other nominees benefiting from Strait's windfall are songwriters Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson, who were nominated for Song of the Year for "Give It Away." Strait now has 70 career CMA Awards nominations, trailing only Jackson, who has 75 with this year's nomination for Musical Event of the Year.

Reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year Kenny Chesney received four nominations this year for Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Musical Event with Tracy Lawrence and Tim McGraw on Lawrence's "Find Out Who Your Friends Are" and Music Video of the Year for "You Save Me" directed by Shaun Silva.

Alison Krauss received four nominations including Female Vocalist, Vocal Group of the Year for Alison Krauss and Union Station featuring Jerry Douglas, and two for Musical Event of the Year with John Waite (his first CMA Awards nomination) on "Missing You" and with Vince Gill on "The Reason Why." Douglas was also nominated for Musician of the Year. Krauss last won the Female Vocalist of the Year category in 1995. She has been nominated in the category five times including each year from 2002-2005.

Martina McBride also had four nominations, including Female Vocalist, Single, Song and Music Video of the Year for "Anyway," which she co-wrote with Brad Warren and Brett Warren. The music video was directed by Robert Deaton and George J. Flanigen IV. McBride could pick up an additional trophy as producer for Single of the Year for the inspiring ballad.

John Rich scored three nominations, including Vocal Duo and Single of the Year for "Lost In This Moment" with partner Big Kenny Alphin as Big & Rich (which they also produced), and as a songwriter with Keith Anderson and Rodney Clawson for "Lost In This Moment."

After winning CMA Female Vocalist of the Year and the Horizon Award in 2006, Carrie Underwood is back in 2007 with three nominations for Female Vocalist, Single for "Before He Cheats" and Music Video of the Year for the same song directed by Roman White. Songwriters for "Before He Cheats," Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins, were nominated for Song of the Year.

Reigning CMA Male Vocalist of the Year Keith Urban had three nominations for Entertainer, Male Vocalist and Album of the Year for Love, Pain & the whole crazy thing, which he co-produced with Dann Huff, who is a Musician of the Year nominee. Songwriters Dave Berg, Deanna Bryant and Sarah Buxton received a nomination for Song of the Year for Urban's "Stupid Boy." Urban has won the Male Vocalist Award every year he has been nominated (2004-2006). He won Entertainer of the Year in 2005.

Rounding out the nominees for Entertainer of the Year is Rascal Flatts. The group was first nominated in the category in 2006. The category has only been won by two groups in CMA Awards history: Alabama (1982, 1983, 1984) and Dixie Chicks (2000). Rascal Flatts has swept the Vocal Group of the Year category the past four years and is nominated in that category again in 2007.

Completing the list of nominees in the Vocal Group of the Year category are Dixie Chicks, Emerson Drive and Little Big Town. Dixie Chicks have won the category four times (1998, 1999, 2000 and 2002) and were last nominated in 2003. This marks Emerson Drive's first CMA Awards nomination. They also received a nomination for Music Video of the Year for "Moments," directed by Steven Goldmann. Little Big Town was nominated for the first time in the Vocal Group category in 2006. They also received their second Horizon Award nomination this year.

Expectation surrounds the Female Vocalist of the Year category. Rounding out the list with McBride, Krauss and Underwood are Miranda Lambert and Reba McEntire. This marks Lambert's first nomination in this category. She received her first CMA Awards nomination in 2005 for the Horizon Award and in 2006 was nominated for Horizon and Music Video of the Year.

McBride and McEntire are tied with the most wins in the Female Vocalist category in history - surpassing Loretta Lynn's and Tammy Wynette's previous records. McBride won in 1999, 2002, 2003 and 2004. McEntire won in 1984, 1985, 1986 and 1987. McEntire was last nominated in the category in 2004. With her two nominations, McEntire solidifies her position as the female artist with the most nominations (45) in the 41-year history of the CMA Awards. She is also nominated in the Musical Event of the Year category with Kelly Clarkson for "Because of You," marking the "American Idol" winner's first CMA Awards nomination.

This is the first year that Josh Turner's name is on the list of nominees for Male Vocalist of the Year. Turner was nominated for the Horizon Award in 2004 and 2006.

An artist may be nominated only twice for the Horizon Award and this year several new hopefuls join two-time nominee Little Big Town on the list, including Jason Aldean, Rodney Atkins, Kellie Pickler and Taylor Swift.

Dierks Bentley won his first CMA Award in 2005 with the Horizon trophy and in 2007 he received his first nomination for Album of the Year for Long Trip Alone, produced by Brett Beavers. A CMA Awards voter favorite, Vince Gill, is also nominated for Album of the Year for These Days. Gill could pick up an additional trophy as producer with John Hobbs and Justin Niebank.

Sugarland makes its debut in the Vocal Duo of the Year category this year with fellow nominees Big & Rich, Brooks & Dunn, Montgomery Gentry and The Wreckers.

Artists performing on the CMA Awards include Jason Aldean, Rodney Atkins, Big & Rich, Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Eagles, Alison Krauss, Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride, Reba McEntire in a duet with LeAnn Rimes, Brad Paisley, Kellie Pickler, George Strait, Sugarland, Taylor Swift, Josh Turner, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban. Rascal Flatts will open the festivities and also perform with Jamie Foxx later in the broadcast.

Presenters on the CMA Awards include Luke Bryan, Jason Michael Carroll, Bucky Covington, Sheryl Crow, Jewel with Ty Murray, Kid Rock, Montgomery Gentry, Blake Shelton, Gretchen Wilson and Dwight Yoakam.

Additional artists performing and presenters at the CMA Awards will be announced at a later date.

For the first time in the history of the CMA Awards, multiple artists will share hosting duties during the three-hour gala including Sara Evans and LeAnn Rimes. Other segment hosts will be announced soon.

The 2006 CMA Awards, held in Nashville during November Sweeps (Nov. 6), ranked in the Top 5 with the Academy Awards, the Golden Globes, Grammy Awards and Emmy's during the 2006-2007 season for awards shows among total viewers. With "The 40th Annual CMA Awards," ABC won Monday evening in both total viewers (16.0 million) and adults 18-49 (5.4/13). According to Nielsen, research estimates that more than 30 million viewers watched all or part of the ceremony.

The CMA Awards nominees and winners are determined by the 6,000 industry professional members of CMA, founded in 1958 as the first trade organization formed to promote an individual genre of music. The first "CMA Awards Banquet and Show" was held in 1967. The following year, the CMA Awards were broadcast on NBC-TV for the first time, making it the longest running, annual music awards program on network television. The show aired on NBC-TV through 1971 and on CBS-TV from 1972 through 2005.

Winners of "The 41st Annual CMA Awards" will be determined in a third/final round of voting by eligible voting members of the Country Music Association. CMA Awards balloting is officiated by the international accounting firm of Deloitte & Touche LLP.

Tickets for the 2007 CMA Awards are on sale now and can be purchased by logging on to www.ticketmaster.com; calling (615) 255-9600; or in person at the Sommet Center box office, 501 Broadway (corner of Fifth Avenue and Broadway, in Nashville). Ticket prices begin at $164 (excluding applicable service/handling fees), with prices increasing depending on seating level.

"The 41st Annual CMA Awards" is a production of the Country Music Association. Walter C. Miller is the Executive Producer and Robert Deaton is the Producer. Paul Miller is the Director. David Wild is the writer. The special will be shot in high definition and broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with 5.1 channel surround sound.

Premiere Radio Networks is the official radio packager of the CMA Awards, including a stereo-radio simulcast of the gala event. American Airlines is the official airline of the 2007 CMA Awards. Chevy: The Official Ride of Country Music. Mary Kay is the Official Beauty Sponsor. Additional promotional partners include AOL, LLC.; Borders Books & Music; Carl Black Chevrolet; Coca-Cola; Dr Pepper; Gibson Guitar; Greased Lightning Cleaning Products; Hard Rock Cafe Nashville; Mr. Coffee; and The Yankee Candle Company.

REACTIONS FROM SOME OF THE CMA AWARDS FINAL NOMINEES

"It cannot get any better than this. We have worked extremely hard this past year. Thank you CMA members for recognizing that hard work. It means more to us than you know." - BIG KENNY of BIG & RICH, Vocal Duo and Single of the Year

"Kenny and I were blown away when 'Lost In This Moment' reached No. 1 on the Country radio charts for multiple weeks, but now hearing we are nominated for Song and Single of the Year, in addition to Vocal Duo, we are truly 'Lost In This Moment.' Thank you." - JOHN RICH of BIG & RICH, Vocal Duo, Single and Song of the Year

"It's not just another year for us. Touring with Alan and Chesney has been some of the biggest business we've ever done, and 'Proud of the House We Built' is introducing maybe the best album we've ever made. It's great to still have a job and good to know people still notice." - KIX BROOKS of BROOKS & DUNN, Vocal Duo of the Year

"Kix and I are happy just to be there. Win or lose, we're glad to have jobs." - RONNIE DUNN of BROOKS & DUNN, Vocal Duo of the Year

"I was already having a great day when I got the phone call from my manager that 'Stupid Boy' was nominated. Dave [Berg], Deanna [Bryant, co-writers] and I were excited to have Keith record the song, and now this - it's over the top. I couldn't be happier." - SARAH BUXTON, Song of the Year

"It's kinda crazy, what's happening. But it's really about the fans. I think you make music that hits them where and how they live, you get out there and you give them a reason to come, to have fun, to let it all go when they're at your show . they're gonna respond. There's been plenty of times I can't believe how far I've taken it onstage - and when I look back, it's because of what they're giving us when we're up there." - KENNY CHESNEY, Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Musical Event and Music Video of the Year

"We got the wake-up call of the year this morning. We were on our bus, headed to our gig in Ohio, when we got a call telling us about our CMA nominations. What a great way to wake up." - BRAD MATES of EMERSON DRIVE, Vocal Group and Music Video of the Year

"This comes at the heels of the news about my induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame and I couldn't be prouder about this. It's been a pretty good while since I've been nominated for anything so this is extra special." - VINCE GILL, Album and Musical Event of the Year

"All I have to say is I'm in a category with REBA. I'm sure all the other nominees will agree that it is an honor to be nominated with a true music icon." - MIRANDA LAMBERT, Female Vocalist of the Year

"I am humbled by the overwhelming support of Country radio and so many of my friends and colleagues in the music industry, a business that I dearly love. . I assembled a very strong team around me and I feel very proud of our accomplishment." - TRACY LAWRENCE, Musical Event of the Year

"Wow! The CMAs are such a huge part of Country Music. It's such an honor to be nominated for these Awards and to be in categories with our friends and artists we've been big fans of for years." - KIMBERLY ROADS of LITTLE BIG TOWN, Horizon and Vocal Group of the Year

"You know, as much competition as there is in Nashville right now, not only in the Duo category but airplay and everything, it's a wonderful feeling to be nominated year after year." - TROY GENTRY of MONTGOMERY GENTRY, Vocal Duo of the Year

"My old man always told me one thing. He said, 'Boy, always remember, if people are talking about you, you're still alive.' So long as we're nominated, we know we're still in the game." - EDDIE MONTGOMERY of MONTGOMERY GENTRY, Vocal Duo of the Year

"I'm going to have such an awesome week. I'm going to be so obnoxiously excited. I apologize to everyone who were watching the announcements, when I started screaming and jumping up and down. But I was not expecting it. It's been a really, really good day." - TAYLOR SWIFT, Horizon

"Man, I'm just floored. I'm speechless. What a way to start the day. I'm in mighty fine company in the Male Vocalist category, and I'm so thankful to everyone who voted for me." - JOSH TURNER, Male Vocalist of the Year

"So here I am on yet another Awards announcement day, wondering if it's gonna be a good day or a bad day. I wake up on the bus and look at my phone, which hasn't rung yet and it's almost 10 o'clock. That's not good. So I check messages anyway and I hear 'you have no new messages.' I then check my e-mail on my new iPhone. I have two new messages: One is junk mail with the subject 'Eliminate E.D. Now.' The other is a spam which makes absolutely no sense: 'Quickness Goat Radishes Envelope.' Not a good sign.

"So I go online and look at the headline: 'Brad Paisley and George Strait lead CMA Nominations.' Good day. Definitely.

"I'm humbled by this fantastic news. Thanks again to all who voted so far, and my fans, for making this such a good day. Can't wait for November." - BRAD PAISLEY, Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Single, Album and Music Video of the Year

"This is what dreams are made of." - KELLIE PICKLER, Horizon

"I really only intended for Love, Pain & the whole crazy thing to be the title of an album, not a premonition of the year ahead. But with the extraordinary love of my wife and the support of the industry, I've been able to get back on the road to do what I love to do most, and to watch these songs connect in a way that I've never seen before. But for this particular year to culminate with these nominations has truly blown me away. I'm so looking forward to actually being at the show this year." - KEITH URBAN, Entertainer, Male Vocalist and Album of the Year

"I've had some great opportunities in my musical career. I have been able to not only grow as an artist in the pop/rock format, but I've also been able to grow in the Country genre. To be nominated for CMA Vocal Duo of the Year is such an honor. It's exciting to know CMA members recognize Jessica's and my contributions to Country Music." - MICHELLE BRANCH of THE WRECKERS, Vocal Duo of the Year

"It is a dream come true to be acknowledged by CMA and the Country Music industry. It was exciting to be nominated for Vocal Duo of the Year in 2006, and to be nominated again in 2007 amongst such talented artists and musicians in this category is a thrill. Thanks to everyone for this honor." - JESSICA HARP of THE WRECKERS, Vocal Duo of the Year

Click Here to see the nominees for the 41st Annual CMA Awards.

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