Country music is glowing this time of year, with various awards shows highlighting the genre and putting the industry on the main stage. For music professionals, artists, singers, songwriters, musicians and fans, it’s an exciting time of year before the summer outdoor festival season begins.
Nashville lights up with glitter and glam for another star-studded series of events that honour the best the business has to offer, June 5-8 for the CMA Festival. This annual event promises the country music world four full days of concerts, meet-and-greets, and events around town. The star-studded line-up this year features acts like Brad Paisley, Chris Young, Eric Church, Hunter Hayes, Tim McGraw, The Band Perry and Little Big Town – the latter of which introduces the festival in this video.
The Band Perry will bring its energy to this year’s CMA Festival (Photo by author)
The 49th annual ACM Awards aired April 6, with hosts Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan (“Bluke,” as they were referred to) providing lots of laughs for viewers and show-goers alike. Tied for the lead in nominations with Tim McGraw, Miranda Lambert took home three awards, including Female Vocalist of the Year, for a record-setting fifth time. Despite her success, the Texas native stayed humble in her acceptance speeches, citing the talent of her fellow nominees and peers. Arguably the best speech of the night, though, came from the Big Machine Label Group’s Justin Moore, who teared up giving a heartfelt and sincere message of appreciation for his award for New Artist.
And up here north of the border, Canadians are showcasing their prowess on the country music stage, too.
The 43rd annual Juno Awards, held this year in Winnipeg in March, saw Dean Brody leave with the Country Album of the Year for Crop Circles, and Johnny Reid with Adult Contemporary Album of the Year for A Christmas Gift to You.
Johnny Reid, winner and co-host of this year’s Juno Awards (Photo by Mike Peleshock via johnnyreid.com)
Also, in the prairies was the 25th annual Saskatchewan Country Music Awards on April 8, which gave Saskatoon’s Codie Prevost and WYATT three awards each.
And finally, the music world’s eyes will be on Ontario this month with our very own second annual CMAO Awards. With Jason McCoy hosting and Fielding Estate Winery as the official wine sponsor, it’s sure to be one rocking night. It’s especially exciting as a showcase of the industry’s strength locally, and the support that’s continually growing for the genre and its talented artists. If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, do so here!
There sure is no shortage of local or North American country talent available to the area this summer, with some of the industry’s hottest acts venturing to Ontario for the prime of festival and concert season. Big names like Blake Shelton, Lady Antebellum, Randy Houser, Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line, Luke Bryan, Toby Keith and more will be playing at venues like Boots & Hearts, Bluesfest, the Molson Canadian Amphitheatre and Darien Lake.
Also sure to be popular are fun outdoor festivals like Parry Sound’s Country in the Woods, Manitoulin’s Countryfest, Music in the Fields, Havelock Country Jamboree and more.
Can’t wait to see everyone out there this summer, and best of luck to our homegrown talent at the awards this month!