Congratulations to all of the nominees, and the musicians, songwriters, engineers, producers, and other team members and their families: https://cmaawards.com/nominees-winners/
Whatever one thinks of award shows in general, or whether one “likes” this act or that act, television is one of the best ways for country acts to reach an audience, other than radio.
The biggest segment on the show last year was an excellent Ricky Skaggs medley. This has just 91,108 views so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WIFKxHNj6Iw
Most so-called “real country fans” would rather just complain about what they don’t like than to actually support and give praise when there’s something good like this.
The CMA Entertainer award usually takes touring strongly into account, and all five entertainer candidates this year have very strong touring numbers. Here’s a link to the highest-paid of 2018: https://www.billboard.com/photos/8520668/2018-highest-paid-musicians-money-makers
That said, Garth Brooks won a couple of years ago, and Keith Urban won last year, and Chris Stapleton didn’t release an album last year. They’ve all “done numbers” on their tours to deserve high-level recognition, but once you get past the touring data, they don’t have as much current music to make their case. I think it’s between Eric Church (who had the top earning country tour for the first half of 2019) and Carrie Underwood. I’ll go ahead and predict Carrie Underwood. Radio’s poor treatment of other women has created a backlash that could help her cause, even though she has enjoyed great radio support throughout her career.
The new artist category is interesting, since I have seen all of these perform, except Morgan Wallen. This is a strong group. The CMHOF recently started a video series called “Unbroken Circle: Exploring Country Music History With Carly Pearce” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMmBvFTBAGA&list=PLZVv4A-Ltp551jARxg0ACjO5eZBKY8aZs
The “musician” award is always stacked. Every one of these people is top of the line. I mentioned Paul Franklin in a post just a couple of days ago, but I’ll be happy for anyone who wins this, and everyone nominated for this category.
When the hosts for this year’s CMA Awards were announced, it was advertised that the theme of this year’s show is “celebrating legendary women in country music.”
Here’s a look at the number of “number ones” by some well-known stars: http://pulsemusic.proboards.com/thread/89631/most-1s
Dolly Parton -25
Reba McEntire -25
Tammy Wynette -20
Crystal Gayle – 18
Loretta Lynn – 16
Carrie Underwood -15
The Judds – 14 (plus Wynonna has 4 solo)
Rosanne Cash – 11
Anne Murray – 10
Janie Fricke – 10
Tanya Tucker- 10
I’m taking nothing away from Tanya Tucker, but this quote from a recent New Yorker article has me scratching my head a little: https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/tanya-tuckers-new-album-might-be-the-best-of-her-long-underrated-career
“Although there are only four women who’ve had more success than Tucker on the country singles chart, each of whom is referred to on a more or less first-name basis by America—Reba, Dolly, Loretta, Tammy—she is still taken less seriously than her musical output has long since warranted.”
Again, I’m taking nothing at all away from Tanya Tucker, and I hope to see her during Americana week. I like her album. I’m just trying to figure out how Crystal Gayle isn’t even in this discussion at all ?
Crystal Gayle has released a couple of songs from her upcoming album, and I haven’t seen much media coverage. She released the title track a couple of days ago, and it has just 45 views ?! Come on, folks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1gvwxKzXwQ
Crystal Gayle was a huge star when I was young. Let’s give her the credit she deserves, too.
In other news, I just read that Donnie Fritts passed away. He was featured on one of the “country funk” compilations I mentioned a couple of posts back. Here’s one of his songs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svYwDAYXOY8