Yep, 2020. Last night’s ACMs ended with a TIE for Entertainer of the Year between CARRIE UNDERWOOD and THOMAS RHETT. It was the first time that’s happened, and let’s hope it’s the last. It defeats the purpose.
(Taste of Country looked at how a tie at the ACMs could even happen.)
Everything about last night’s show was strange, but if I had to pick one thing that brought it down . . . I’m calling it a tie. Just kidding. It was the silence. I never really thought about it, but award shows NEED a live crowd. You can’t fake that energy.
Anyway, other big winners were LUKE COMBS who won Top Male Vocalist plus Album of the Year for “What You See Is What You Get” . . . and OLD DOMINION who won Top Vocal Group, and Song of the Year for “One Man Band”.
KEITH URBAN hosted the show. Almost. He didn’t say much, and when he did he looked like some random country singer reading cue cards. I know, tough gig so he gets a pass. Wait, one more. Is there an age cutoff for skinny jeans? (He’s 52.)
The show took-off when the talent did, which brings us to MIRANDA LAMBERT at the Bluebird Café doing a stripped-down version of, what else, “Bluebird”. Luke Combs also had a Bluebird moment with his song “Better Together”.
Old school country was honored with Carrie Underwood’s salute to the Opry’s most iconic females. She did a medley of songs from Patsy Cline, Loretta Lynn, Barbara Mandrell, Dolly Parton, Reba McEntire, and Martina McBride. They were in good hands.
If you weren’t sure why TENILLE TOWNES won New Female Vocalist her performance of “Somebody’s Daughter” showed you why. You know what? Same for New Male Vocalist RILEY GREEN doing “I Wish Grandpas Never Died”.
All eyes were on TAYLOR SWIFT’s world premiere of “Betty”, and she delivered. And if MICKEY GUYTON’s amazing performance of “What Are You Gonna Tell Her” didn’t move you, then you need to check your pulse.
In the “right person for the right moment” category: TRISHA YEARWOOD sang “I’ll Carry You Home” in a tribute to country heroes we lost this year.
(The “Tennessean” has a page of photos from the night. And E! Online has a collection of red carpet pics.)
This Year’s ACM Award Winners:
Entertainer of the Year: Tie between Carrie Underwood and Thomas Rhett
Top Male Vocalist: Luke Combs
Top Female Vocalist: Maren Morris
Top Vocal Group: Old Dominion
Top Vocal Duo: Dan + Shay
Album of the Year: “What You See Is What You Get”, Luke Combs
Song of the Year: “One Man Band”, Old Dominion
Single Record of the Year: “God’s Country”, Blake Shelton
New Male Vocalist of the Year: Riley Green
New Female Vocalist of the Year: Tenille Townes
Video of the Year: Thomas Rhett, “Remember You Young”
Music Event of the Year: “Fooled Around and Fell In Love”, Miranda Lambert with Maren Morris, Ashley McBryde, Tenille Townes, Caylee Hammack, and Elle King
(The Music Event of the Year, Video of the Year, and Best New Artist winners were announced before the show.)