Nominees for the 56th annual Academy of Country Music Awards were announced today, with Chris Stapleton and Maren Morris leading with six nods each. This year, the awards show will broadcast live on April 18 from three iconic Nashville venues: the Ryman Auditorium, the Bluebird Café, and the Grand Ole Opry House.
Among the nominees for the coveted Entertainer of the Year award is Stapleton, who released his fourth studio album, Starting Over, last year; Eric Church, who is readying to release his three-part LP Heart & Soul in April; and Luke Bryan, who hit the top of the country charts with Born Here Live Here Die Here in August. The three men will compete for the title against Luke Combs and Thomas Rhett.
Stapleton, Combs, Rhett, and Church are also up for Male Artist of the Year, alongside Dierks Bentley. Morris, meanwhile, is nominated for Female Artist of the Year, competing against Ashley McBryde, Miranda Lambert, Carly Pearce, and Kelsea Ballerini.
Both Bryan’s Born Here Live Here Die Here and Stapleton’s Staring Over are among the contenders for Album of the Year, alongside McBryde’s Never Will, Kane Brown’s Mixtape Vol.1, and the Brothers Osbourne’s Skeletons.
Up for New Male Artist of the Year is Parker McCollum, Cody Johnson, Travis Denning, Jimmie Allen, and Hardy, while one of this year’s most buzzed-about artists, Mickey Guyton is among the nominees for New Female Artist of the Year, alongside Caylee Hammack, Gabby Barrett, Ingrid Andress, and Tenille Arts.
Guyton, who released an Amazon Original cover of Beyonce’s “If I Were a Boy” today, is also up for a Grammy nomination for her poignant single “Black Like Me.”
During the telecast, country fans can look forward to plenty of exciting performances and unprecedented collaborations – all of which will be announced in the coming weeks.
The 56th annual Academy of Country Music Awards air Sunday, April 18 on CBS. To view a complete list of nominees, visit the official website.