CBS hosts 56th Academy of Country Music Awards

Amelia Symons, Staff Writer

Starting in 1966, the Academy of Country Music Awards was the first country music awards program to be held by a major organization. The award ceremony was first shown on television in 1972, where ABC broadcast the awards. It wasn’t until the Academy joined with Dick Clark Productions in 1979 that the show switched to NBC and finally to CBS and has stayed with CBS since 1998. Award winners are gifted with a hat trophy that was first created in 1968 and redone with a more modern look in 2003. 

The 56th Academy of Country Music Awards were held on April 18, 2021, honoring the “industry’s accomplishments during the previous year.” The 2021 ceremony was hosted by Keith Urban and Mickey Guyton in Nashville, Tennessee. Mickey Guyton became the first African-American woman and second African-American artist to host the show this year. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the ceremony used several locations and a mixture of live and pre-recorded performances. Some of the places used to broadcast the show were the Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, and the Bluebird Café, and some of the recorded performances were taped on a stage in front of the Cumberland River and the Station Inn in downtown Nashville. Some of the performances for the 2021 ceremony included Lady A, Eric Church, Gabby Barrett, Brothers Osborne, Thomas Rhett, Dan + Shay, Kenny Chesney, Luke Combs, Maren Morris, and Brad Paisley. 

Maren Morris and Chris Stapleton had the most nominations with six each and Maren Morris walked away as one of the three highest-receiving artists with two awards. Carly Pearce and Lee Brice were the other two artists that left the ceremony with two awards. Some of the other recipients of awards were Dan+Shay for Duo of the Year, Old Dominion for Group of the Year, Luke Bryan for Entertainer of the Year, Maren Morris for Female Artist of the Year, Thomas Rhett for Male Artist of the Year, Chris Stapleton for Album of the Year for his album Starting Over, Kane Brown for Video of the Year with “Worldwide Beautiful,” Jimmie Allen fo New Male Artist of the Year, and Gabby Barrett for New Female Artist of the Year.

As of now, the ceremony will be back to normal for the 57th Academy of Country Music Awards, but time will tell if that will be the case or not.