The 49th Annual CMA Awards: Predictions and Live Blog

Well, it is time. Tonight, at 8 PM EST, Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood will host the 49th annual CMA Awards on ABC. It is sure to be a night mostly filled with bad pop music and little hope for country, but as fans of country music and of music in general, we will be there together to watch it and cheer for the signs of hope. For a preview and my predictions, you can
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I will be updating this post throughout the night with thoughts, the results, and probably some pop country bashing.

2015 CMA Awards Live Results

Musician of the Year: Mac McAnally
Music Video of the Year: Maddie & Tae–“Girl in a Country Song”
Event of the Year: Keith Urban featuring Eric Church–“Raise ’em Up”
Vocal Duo of the Year: Florida Georgia Line
Vocal Group of the Year: Little Big Town
New Artist of the Year: Chris Stapleton
Single of the Year: Little Big Town–“Girl Crush”
Song of the Year: “Girl Crush”–Liz Rose, Lori McKenna, and Hillary Lindsey
Album of the Year: Chris Stapleton–Traveller
Female Vocalist of the Year: Miranda Lambert
Male Vocalist of the Year: CHRIS STAPLETON!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Entertainer of the Year: Luke Bryan

Live Commentary

7:11–Hank Williams JR. singing “Are You Ready for the Country?”–the most ironic opener in CMA history. and I didn’t know it was possible to hate Keith Urban’s “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16” worse, but after that, I was wrong.
7:17–Have to love Brad Paisley making fun of Sam Hunt for rapping in his songs and then starting to sing “for no apparent reason.” And “Luke Stagefaller.” Brilliant.
7:24–and the Single of the Year goes to “Girl Crush.” Thank the good Lord for this!
7:31–oh Zac Brown, the traitor of country music…
7:32–Seriously, Zac, you don’t even sound like yourself…
7:34–I have no idea how this Kenny Chesney song spent three weeks at #1…it’s just so boring…then again I would almost welcome even Luke Bryan’s entire discography after having my heart ripped out by my former friend Zac Brown.
7:37–oh look, it’s Aubrey Peeples from Nashville, an actual talented artist forced to announce that Sam Hunt is up next…the irony.
7:42–And here he is, come to rap some and then start singing for no apparent reason…if this piece of shit song somehow wins Song of the Year…
7:44–If he doesn’t stop soon, I shall wish I was deaf…
7:46–And the Song of the Year goes to “Girl Crush.” Thank the Lord and all that is holy that it was not Sam Hunt.
7:51–Country Exclusive Alternative Song of the Year

7:57–And the New Artist of the Year is Chris Stapleton! Pleasantly shocked. No Sam Hunt, no Kelsea Ballerini, no Thomas Rhett. Beautiful!
7:59–Ok, if you’re listening to Carrie Underwood sing “Smoke Break” right now, you cannot tell me she’s not doing a Miranda Lambert impression. no Carrie, I want Carrie, not Miranda.
8:09–Chris Stapleton and Justin Timberlake sing “Tennessee Whiskey.”…what a strange pair.
8:14–Justin Timberlake is far from the worst thing we’ve seen or will see tonight.
8:19–Back to Chris Stapleton…this was a huge win, and he’s still up for two more!
8:20–Back to reality with Florida Georgia Line…they are so 2013…
8:24–And the Vocal Duo of the Year is, of course, Florida Georgia Line.
8:27–Eric Church sings “Mr. Misunderstood.” I actually really like this.
8:31–Country Exclusive Alternative Duo of the Year: Maddie & Tae

8:35–Thomas Rhett and Fallout Boy…I don’t even have a smartass comment for this…it just writes itself…
8:38–Can we get Justin Timberlake back? Seriously…
8:42–and the Album of the Year goes to…Chris Stapleton’s Traveller! Excellent!
8:44–This is huge for both Chris Stapleton and Dave Cobb…Dave Cobb produced such excellent albums as Jason Isbell’s Something More Than Free and Lindi Ortega’s Faded Gloryville as well. This is a huge step for Cobb, Stapleton, and traditionalists.
8:47–I really can’t stand Kelsea Ballerini, but I did notice it was the female performance they cut short for announcing the radio station nominees. But as I said, I can’t stand her, so…
8:52–Brad Paisley sings “Country Nation”–an average song made worse by shamelessly using college football to promote it.
8:56–This Blake Shelton song is not that good and I have never liked it much, but I just heard a fiddle…yes Sam Hunt that thing is called a fiddle.
8:58–This is Maddie & Tae’s way of saying they really are traditional…by playing “Girl in a Country Song” in a stripped-down fashion…I love these ladies!!!
9:00–Also, Maddie & Tae were cut off too…women, if you’re not named Miranda Lambert or Carrie Underwood, start expecting this. It doesn’t matter if you’re traditional Madison Marlow and Taylor Dye or fake pop princess Kelsea Ballerini, country radio and country award shows don’t want you.
9:04–Here comes Luke “stagefaller” Bryan, or as I call him, “Douchebag”…oh please can he fall?
9:05–“I wanna drop this cell phone out” is the stupidest line I have ever heard–because women everywhere are so turned on by men damaging high-dollar electronics in their efforts to “strip it down.”
9:10–And the Vocal Group of the Year is, of course, Little Big Town.
9:12–Also, did I just hear Pentatonics sing an Oak Ridge Boys song? Don’t know what to say to this…
9:13–I like Miranda Lambert’s “Bathroom Sink.” Will this be a single?
9:17–Country Exclusive Alternative Group of the Year: Turnpike Troubadours

9:20–Oh look, it’s the best friend of “Douchebag,” Jason Aldean…aka “Arrogant Asshole.”…
9:25–Thank you, Kacey Musgraves, for being the first non-Miranda or Carrie female to grace the stage with a complete song…and save us from Jason Aldean.
9:27–Seriously, Kacey, this “Dime Store Cowgirl” is the most country bit I’ve seen all night.
9:34–Marry me, Dierks Bentley. “Riser” is amazing!
9:37–And the Female Vocalist of the Year, is, of course, Miranda Lambert.
9:43–Country Exclusive Alternative Female Vocalist of the Year: Ashley Monroe

9:46–Brooks & Dunn and Reba–can we get more of that??!!
9:47–Yes, Ronnie Dunn, I agree, “Play something country…crank up the band, play the steel guitar.”…
9:50–Do y’all realize what just happened here???!!! Chris Stapleton, Male Vocalist of the Year!!!!!!!!!
9:51–And no awards for Sam Hunt…good Lord, this is ridiculously good news!!!
9:52–To all those who didn’t watch…there’s hope!!!!!! Hope for country music, in the form of Chris Stapleton!!!
9:54–And in case y’all were unsure…holy shit, this is a big deal for country music…..
9:56–I hope this isn’t spoiled by a Luke Bryan win for Entertainer…
9:57–But of course it is…come on now Luke…fall please…
9:58–Luke Bryan says, “Watching Chris Stapleton have this night is so uplifting.” I like this from Luke…however, Chris is fighting against douchebags like you with douche music.
10:00–I don’t even care that much…Chris Stapleton had three wins, and a shutout for Sam Hunt…yes!!!

Final Thoughts

Well, it was certainly an interesting night for country music. We were treated to inevitable terrible performances from the likes of Luke Bryan, FGL, and Sam Hunt. However, there were also many glaring signs of hope. Sam Hunt didn’t take home any awards, and Chris Stapleton took home all three for which he was nominated. It is huge for traditionalists that he took even one…but to take New Artist, Album of the Year, and especially Male Vocalist of the Year…this is hope like we have not seen in years. Dave Cobb getting to stand there and accept a CMA was unreal. The lack of women was still disturbing, especially after the CMA talk of more representation for females…Maddie & Tae and Kelsea Ballerini were both cut off in the middle of their performances. The only female besides Miranda and Carrie to be granted a full song was Kacey Musgraves. The biggest surprise of the night–aside from the astronomically shocking wins of Stapleton–was, at least for me, the performance by Stapleton and Timberlake. I’d have rather heard Timberlake than many of the “country” performances I heard. All in all, as performances went, the night was pretty boring and lacked anything especially amazing. There were certainly horrid moments tonight, but we should all celebrate the huge victories of Chris Stapleton and traditional country music. This was not just a token nomination to appease traditionalists like us…it was unprecedented change. Overall, tonight’s CMA awards have promised hope for our beloved country music.