2020 CMA Award Show Winners & Recap

We take you into a rundown of the show and performances and winners of this year's show!

The first truly live award show produced since COVID-19 hit the world, The CMA’s decided to be as close to what we’re used to as possible took place on November 11, 2020 and was broadcast live from Nashville’s Music City Center (next to the Bridgestone Arena in the city’s downtown area).

Prior to the show, the CMA Awards awarded Musical Event of the Year, Musician of the Year, Songwriter of the Year and Music Video of the year. Carly Pearce & Lee Brice and Miranda Lambert lead the names winning that category.

The opening performance tribute to Charlie Daniels by Dierks Bentley, Brothers Osborne, Ashley Monroe and Jason Aldean was on point as they all displayed why they're big stars in the genre. Next, Morgan Wallen showcased why his music has broken big with a solid performance of "More Than My Hometown" and then Gabby Barrett was joined by Charlie Puth (and her husband and Idol alum Cade Foehner on guitar) for a strong performance of "I Hope." The hosts Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker keep the show flowing with corny jokes as Eric Church shows the COVID-19 hair cuts as he sings his new single "Hell of a View."

Ashley McBryde shows why she's become a fan and industry favorite with her Top 10 RIAA GOLD hit "One Night Standards" while the pre-taped "10,000 Hours" performance by Dan+Shay and Justin Bieber was as solid and left us in awe of Shay Mooney's vocal tone (sooo buttery). The New artist of the year award was handed out to Morgan Wallen and, really, after his massive 2020 on the radio nobody should be surprised. "Cold As You" hit with the stars in the audience but where was Luke Combs' Blue Solo Cup? The Jon Pardi performance of "Pickup Man" was very good and much stronger than we felt his covers EP was (his voice didn't fit some of those songs as well as it does here) but his tribute to the late Joe Diffie gave us all the feels.

Charles Kelley stepped in for a COVID-19 infected Lee Brice in a pre-taped performance of "I Hope You're Happy Now" with the song's co-writer and singer Carly Pearce. It was a nice performance and thanks to his years recording with Hillary Scott, CK is so comfortable singing duets. Dan + Shay won the Duo of the Year award and before the commercial, Reba and Darius Rucker paid tribute to Mac Davis on the classic ballad "In The Ghetto." Meanwhile, coming out of the commercial, Miranda Lambert joined in with a mostly acoustic take on her fantastic chart-topping hit "Bluebird." After that performance and quick witted Reba joking about her cough at this award show, we were treated to a little bit of Jimmie Allen's fantastic "Best Shot" song before he intro'd the Willie Nelson Award hand off to Charley Pride, one of Jimmie's idols and one of country music's best. Charley was gracious and funny all at the same time and in fine voice singing "Kiss An Angel Good Morning" with Jimmie.

After the break, Chris Stapleton proved with his wife Morgane why he's one of the genre's best as he sang "Starting Over" from his new album with just the acoustic guitar. This is actually how Stapleton recorded the song. Old Dominion continues their reign for Vocal Group of the Year with the third award in a row. There was an understated elegance to Ingred Andress singing "More Hearts Than Mine" with a piano player and a string section. What an emotive performance. It was followed up by "Be a Light" from Thomas Rhett, Reba and Chris Tomlin and the perfect award show kind of song. Luke Combs winning Album of the Year for What You See Is What You Get.  Little Big Town's tribute to Kenny Rogers was brilliant.

Brothers Osborne brought the house down with "All Night," the kind of song they're known for while Old Dominion's tribute to Urban Cowboy with "Lookin' For Love" is solid. Maren Morris sings a nice, slightly different version of "The Bones" before Keith Urban sings "God Whispered Your Name" acoustically from Australia. Maren Morris took time, not to thank her label team, etc., but to thank the black women of country music who make music nobody's really heard (but definitely should, like Rhiannon Giddens, Yola, Rissi Palmer, etc.). Luke Combs is quite the humble guy as he takes home the Male Vocalist of the Year award for the second year in a row. And, then, we get Kelsea Ballerini performing "Hole In A Bottle" as the only non-nominee of the night. Finally, Eric Church takes home the Entertainer of the Year award and delivers the best speech of the night. Yes, country music (and music in general) brings people together instead of dividing us.

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
* Eric Church
* Luke Combs
* Miranda Lambert
* Carrie Underwood
* Keith Urban

SINGLE OF THE YEAR
* “10,000 Hours” — Dan + Shay (with Justin Bieber)
* “Beer Never Broke My Heart” — Luke Combs
* “Bluebird” — Miranda Lambert
* “The Bones” — Maren Morris
* “I Hope” — Gabby Barrett

Maren wins and thanks the industry and thanks her co-producer on the multi-genre hit love song.

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
* Heartache Medication — Jon Pardi Producers: Bart Butler, Ryan Gore, Jon Pardi
* Never Will — Ashley McBryde Producers: Jay Joyce, John Peets
* Old Dominion — Old Dominion
* What You See Is What You Get — Luke Combs
* Wildcard — Miranda Lambert

He had a short, thankful acceptance speech for his first win in this category.

SONG OF THE YEAR
* “Bluebird” — Songwriters: Luke Dick, Natalie Hemby, Miranda Lambert
* “The Bones”— Songwriters: Maren Morris, Jimmy Robbins, Laura Veltz
* “Even Though I'm Leaving” — Songwriters: Luke Combs, Wyatt B. Durrette III, Ray Fulcher
* “I Hope You're Happy Now” — Songwriters: Luke Combs, Randy Montana, Carly Pearce, Jonathan Singleton
* “More Hearts Than Mine” — Songwriters: Ingrid Andress, Sam Ellis, Derrick Southerland

For her second award in the first half hour of the show, Maren Morris sweeps the Single and song of the year categories. It's a big win for her on the biggest song of the year. Her co-writers Jimmy Robbins and Laura Veltz win here too.

FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
* Miranda Lambert
* Ashley McBryde
* Maren Morris
* Kacey Musgraves
* Carrie Underwood

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
* Eric Church
* Luke Combs
* Thomas Rhett
* Chris Stapleton
* Keith Urban

VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
* Lady A
* Little Big Town
* Midland
* Old Dominion
* Rascal Flatts

VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
* Brooks & Dunn
* Brothers Osborne
* Dan + Shay
* Florida Georgia Line
* Maddie & Tae

Their 2020 was pretty big thanks to that massive viral hit "10,000 Hours" which they sang with Bieber on this show so it's no surprise they would beat Maddie & Tae and Brothers Osborne for the award. FGL and Brooks & Dunn really felt like also rans this year. That being said, this category definitely is better than it's been in years past with relevant artists actually here.

MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR
* “10,000 Hours” — Dan + Shay (with Justin Bieber)
* “Be A Light” — Thomas Rhett (feat. Reba McEntire, Hillary Scott, Chris Tomlin & Keith Urban)
* “The Bones” — Maren Morris (with Hozier)
* “Fooled Around And Fell In Love” — Miranda Lambert (feat. Maren Morris, Elle King, Ashley McBryde, Tenille Townes & Caylee Hammack)
* “I Hope You're Happy Now” — Carly Pearce and Lee Brice

This was handed out before the show. Carly sang the song with Charles Kelley in a pre-recorded take pre-show.

MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
* “10,000 Hours” — Dan + Shay (with Justin Bieber)
* “Bluebird” — Miranda Lambert
* “Homemade” — Jake Owen
* “I Hope You're Happy Now” — Carly Pearce and Lee Brice
* “Second One to Know” — Chris Stapleton

NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR
* Jimmie Allen
* Ingrid Andress
* Gabby Barrett
* Carly Pearce
* Morgan Wallen

Morgan takes it in a mild surprise but the category was stacked this year.
MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR
* Jenee Fleenor, Fiddle
* Paul Franklin, Steel Guitar
* Rob McNelley, Guitar
* Ilya Toshinskiy, Guitar
* Derek Wells, Guitar

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