Stars Shining Over CMAs


Kenny Chesney photo courtesy of Sony BMG Nashville.

Sept. 11, 2008 — Many of country music’s biggest stars are still glowing today over the nominations for the 42nd annual Country Music Association Awards, revealed on Wednesday. Kenny Chesney topped the slate with seven nominations, while several acts — including James Otto, Jake Owen, Robert Plant and Lady Antebellum — picked up the first CMA nominations of their careers.

Two-time nominee Trace Adkins is a finalist for the first time in a decade, while the Eagles return to the list for the first time in 31 years. Also of note, Alan Jackson’s four nominations give him a career total of 79, the most in CMA history. George Strait is second on the list with 75 — he picked up five for this year’s awards, which will be presented Nov. 12 at Nashville’s Sommet Center. Click here to see the full list of nominees.

Reactions from the stars include:
Kenny Chesney — "You never know how these things are going to go. We work so hard on this music, the tours, the videos. It's so much the focus of what I do, how I live, it's always a thrill to see that people are not just noticing, but recognize what we're all trying to do."

Jennifer Nettles, Sugarland — "I almost spilt my tea this morning as I was watching and the nominations kept being added. Being in the Entertainer Of The Year category is such an honor. We’ve been lucky enough to be out on the road with Kenny Chesney for a couple of tours over the last two years. Looks like rock by osmosis really does work."

George Strait — "I'm sitting down here in south Texas bracing for hurricane Ike. This really brightens my day. I look forward to a great celebration of our great music. Thanks to all involved."

Trace Adkins — "‘You're Gonna Miss This’ has been such a special gift for me this year, so I'm really thrilled that the CMA and the industry recognized the strength of that song. Not only was it one of the biggest hits of my career, when we performed it on the season finale of ‘The Celebrity Apprentice,’ it helped raise a lot of money for my charity, the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network. So yeah, I’m really proud of this song."

Little Big Town — "We are incredibly grateful to be nominated again for Group of The Year, and we are thrilled over the Vocal Event nomination with Sugarland and Jake Owen for ‘Life In A Northern Town.’ People's response to this song has been overwhelming, and we couldn't be happier that something that started as a moment in a live show for the fans would eventually be nominated for a CMA award."

Miranda Lambert — "I wasn't expecting anything this year, but, wow, what a way to wake up on a Wednesday morning! 'Gunpowder & Lead' was my very first Top 10, and I wrote it from a real place in my life so it's extra special that it is up for Single of the Year. Also, being nominated for Female Vocalist is always something I wish for, but I know there are only five spots. There are so many great artists, and I am thankful and ecstatic that the CMA thought I deserved one of those coveted positions."

Carrie Underwood — "This is awesome! As an artist you always hope the music you record will touch people’s lives. There is nothing more rewarding than to be recognized by your peers and to know your fans are enjoying the same ride."

Rodney Atkins — "It's incredible. I'm really honored to get to be a part of the CMA Awards. I can't wait for the show. To be nominated is crazy good!"

Brad Mates, Emerson Drive — "We're honored to be included in the Group category for the second time. To be recognized by our peers for a second year in a row is a great feeling, and it will be fun to celebrate in my hometown!"

James Otto — "I have been in this business for a lot of years, and to be acknowledged by my peers is overwhelming. I am still in shock...The new artists out there are so strong that I thought there was no way that I was going to be nominated. The only thing I have ever won was most athletic in high school, and no disrespect to Ki-Be High, but this CMA nomination blows that one out of the water."

Taylor Swift — "This was definitely a day worth getting up really early for. Hearing my name called in the Female Vocalist category was a dream come true!"