2008 CMA Awards Live Blog

2008 CMA Winners

Entertainer: Kenny Chesney

Male Vocalist: Brad Paisley

Female Vocalist: Carrie Underwood

Album: George Strait, Troubadour

Vocal Duo: Sugarland

New Artist: Lady Antebellum

Vocal Group: Rascal Flatts

Song: Jennifer Nettles, “Stay”

Single: George Strait, “I Saw God Today”

Music Video: Brad Paisley feat. Andy Griffith, “Waiting on a Woman”

Musical Event: Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, “Gone Gone Gone”

Musician: Mac McAnally


Predict the Winners:

Kevin – 8

Leeann – 7

Blake – 7

Dan – 7


Live Blog:

11:03 Thanks again for another great night.  See ya at the Grammys!

11:02ish To Blake and Dan:  A Song For You.

11:02 Blake: Down with our dictator!

11:02 Dan: Kevin sucks.

10:57 If I was a petty man, I’d be gloating about out-predicting all of my co-writers at Country Universe.  Wait a minute.   I am a petty man.   I won! Yes! I won!  This country universe is mine.   Y’all just live in it.  Suckers.  (Except for you Leeann.  You didn’t get all up in my grill, talking smack before the throwdown.  You’re cool.)

10:56 ENTERTAINER – Kenny Chesney

10:54 Standing O for Shania.  Good God, she’s beautiful.   Welcome home.

10:50 So the only artist I see live who charges Eagles prices is Madonna, and I have to say that if she just stood there and growled, I’d feel ripped off.  Come on, guys.  Slap on some heels.  Throw in some synchronized dancing.  Jump some rope.  Rub up against something.   You’re supposed to be legends.

10:49 Dan: Once again, a washed up rock act gives us one of the better performances of the night. I like the Eagles, but that’s sad.

10:48 You know it’s bad when you’re hoping that Shania’s the surprise guest because you want to see some real country stars.

10:46 Paisley’s right about that.  The Eagles have a lot more to do with country music today than most seventies country stars.

10:40 MALE VOCALIST – Brad Paisley

10:39 Dan: Reese is the smart one. She’s been drinking.

10:38 Cheaper applause line at the CMA’s: Appealing to patriotism, or name-dropping Johnny Cash?

10:37 Oh, Carrie.  Country music stars don’t have to worry about movie stars that can sing.   Just rockers who are too old for rock radio.

10:36 Dan: Trace is giving a sweet performance. Wish I liked the song a little more.

10:35 If Chesney is no Strait, then Adkins is no Toby Keith.

10:31 I agree with Dan. It’s generally a bad idea to record something if George Strait or Trisha Yearwood has put it to tape.

10:30 Dan: Anyone else think that cleavage shot of Kenny in the greenish gray tank top was a bit much? Also, he sounds like he’s aping Strait’s version.

10:28 Here comes Kenny Chesney.  Could he win Entertainer for a fourth time and make me a winner, too?

10:24 Blake: The guitar is not plugged in and I don’t hear it AT ALL. I’m just saying!

10:23 Dan: Now that’s a well-groomed beard!

10:22 James Otto looks scared to death, but still sounds better than most of the cocky performers tonight.

10:20 Brad Paisley is not funny.  Just sayin’.

10:19 Okay, Sugarland got a little glittery and high-tech in the end.  But they didn’t need it.

10:18 Notice how the best performances tonight – Lambert, Underwood, Urban, Sugarland – all skipped the production elements? The really great talents don’t need them.

10:16 This is my second or third favorite song on the new album.  This is how arena country/rock should be done.  Thanks, Sugarland.

10:11 I just want to say this.  Carrie Underwood always goes out of her way to say that she didn’t get here the conventional way, but country music embraced her anyway.   She may have taken a different path, but once she got here, she did it the old-fashioned way: working her butt off, studying the greats, and respecting the history of what came before her, all while moving forward in her own way.   She’s the real deal, and more than worthy to stand among the Loretta, Tammy, Reba, and Martina as a three-time Female Vocalist champ.

10:10 FEMALE VOCALIST – Carrie Underwood

10:08 Okay, maybe there’s one and a half Vince Gills.  Somebody’s been hitting Rotier’s.

10:07 Brad’s wise enough to know there’s only one Vince Gill.  Nice homage.

10:06 Not gonna front.  Tearing up a bit.

10:05 Dan: Most gratuitous use of wind machines ever.   But she’s singing the hell out of it.

10:04 Martina looked confused when she didn’t get her standard ovations for her power notes.  The reason why is singing right now.  Carrie’s raised the bar.

10:02 Carrie’s getting a hell of an introduction for a hell of a song.  I’m a true believer on this one.   Sing it, Carrie.

10:01 Rodney Atkins is maniacally taking notes to add a new verse to his “America” song.

10:00 He’s better than all of ’em.

9:59 Dan: Thank God Keith Urban showed up to show us what pop music is supposed to sound on the CMAs.

9:57 Interesting that Urban’s commanding the stage better than any of the other rockers tonight, and he’s doing it without any bells and whistles behind him.  Like Lambert, the talent is all he needs.

9:56 No offense to Brad Paisley, but if he was a duo with Keith Urban, he’d be Kix and Keith would be Ronnie.

9:53 In the race for Country Universe prognosticator of the year, Leeann and Blake have fallen out of contention, while Kevin and Dan vie for the top slot.  It all comes down to Entertainer. Stay tuned.

9:49 ALBUM: George Strait, Troubadour – Kevin’s tied again with Dan. Yes!

9:48 Right about now, we should’ve been hearing Emmylou Harris and Tom T. Hall and The Statlers.  Sigh.

9:45 The video sold me on this song, though I’ve come to enjoy the audio.  One of Brad’s best to date.

9:42 Dan: And Hootie gives us one of the more traditional performances of the night. Country music hates itself.

9:40 So we know where the 90’s rockers go to keep their careers going.  Where can we find the 90’s country stars?

9:36 Dan & Blake: Yay Sugarland!

9:35 VOCAL DUO – Sugarland

9:34 The future of country music.  Sigh.

9:33 She can outsing the whole lot of ’em, can’t she?

9:31 I can’t hear Reba.  Did they give her Kix’s mic by mistake?

9:30 It’s a little silly to bill this Brooks & Dunn/Reba McEntire performance as one night only, given the fact that they’ve toured together many times and just sang on the ACM’s together this past spring.

9:28 Acknowledging Jerry Reed? Awesome.  How about acknowledging the Hall of Fame inductees, too?

9:25 Dan’s the only one with an above .500 batting average tonight.

9:22 Other groups who have won this award: Sawyer Brown, Dixie Chicks, Rascal Flatts.


9:17 Jason Aldean can actually pull of the country-rock thing better than Kid Rock.  The material does nothing for me, but it’s nice to hear a singer who can overpower the band.

9:15 Maybe if Kenny could sing like Strait, the island vibe wouldn’t sound so tired.

9:14 Push him again.  Please.

9:13 Carrie saw it in the window and she had to have it.  (h/t Carol Burnett.)

9:09 “The return of a true country superstar.”  Gotta be Shania, right? Rumor has it she’s in town.  She’s got more star power than the whole first hour and ten minutes.

9:08 This song’s been going on all night long.  Crikey.

9:06 What does this have to do with country music?

9:05 I’d rather hear the Warren Zevon song.

9:04 Wouldn’t it be funny if the song we’ve been singing “All Summer Long” ended up being “All I Want to Do”?

9:03 One on-stage award show costume change is a gimmick.  Two is an unhealthy fetish.

9:02 Joining Alison Krauss and Martie Maguire in the pantheon of great female fiddlers on the CMA stage is…an extra from the Renaissance Fair.

9:01 She’s coming down the stairs! She’s gonna do something!

8:59 Here comes Taylor Swift.   You can hear her fans screaming off-key.  Oh, wait.  That’s her.

8:57 If I wasn’t duty-bound, I dare say I’d be switching over to new South Park in an hour.

8:54 That’s the ugliest jacket I’ve ever seen.  Ever.

8:53 And Dan takes the lead, as I curse myself for betting against the hair gel boys.

8:52 VOCAL GROUP: Rascal Flatts

8:51 Atkins praises being American, then the camera cuts to two Aussies.  Good work, producers.

8:50 Only in America can you have 4 #1 hits without changing your hat.

8:49 Am I the only one who expected Atkins to curse at the lemonade stand kids?

8:48 A patriotic country singer.  How novel.

8:46 Oh look.  An over-sized dryer sheet.

8:44 Yes! Pat Benatar!

8:43 So the AMA’s get Carrie Underwood and Pink?  Lucky AMA’s.

8:40 Interesting factoid: this is the first time two artists have co-hosted since 1992, when Reba and Vince shared the honors.  Realizing how long ago that was makes me feel old, even though I was in eighth grade at the time.

8:39 I was fully expecting roller skates for some reason.

8:37 Okay, gotta say I’m digging the female guitarist with the Pippi Longstocking ‘do.

8:36 Nothing against Lady Antebellum.  I’m just wondering why so many of the new acts want to be eighties rock stars.  I blame VH1’s whitewashing of that era.

8:34 Good performance, but it’s going to take a Female Vocalist win for Lambert to get a boost for the song at radio.

8:33 Miranda’s sounding great.   We should push for an unplugged CMA Awards.

8:29 Pre-Telecast Winners:

  • Music Video: Brad Paisley feat. Andy Griffith, “Waiting on a Woman”
  • Musical Event: Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, “Gone Gone Gone”
  • Musician: Mac McAnally

8:25 SONG – “Stay” – Jennifer Nettles

8:24 Cyrus Virus!

8:23 So Alan Jackson won’t be adding a new entry to Classic CMA Moments.

8:22 Oh dear God line dancers.

8:21 Alan Jackson is nominated for Song of the Year for this?

8:18 Maybe the sound system is the reason that the stripped-down performances are always the best.  It’s all Pickler can do to be heard, and she has a good set of pipes.

8:17 Definitely a Taylor Swift song.   She’s wearing Shania’s 1999 Grammy outfit.

8:16 Kellie Pickler’s new song.  I haven’t heard it yet.

8:15 Just heard that Lil Wayne is performing with Kid Rock tonight?

8:11 SINGLE OF THE YEAR – George Strait, “I Saw God Today”

8:09 I don’t like dirty jokes on the CMA’s.  Not even kinda dirty ones.

8:08 Age jokes at George Strait’s expense.  Jesus wept.

8:07 Underwood’s poised.  Paisley’s not as funny as he thinks.   Seriously, I’ll just keep copying and pasting that all night.

8:06 Underwood’s poised.  Paisley’s not as funny as he thinks.   Pretty much what I’d expect so far.

8:05 Billy Ray Cyrus looks like Severus Snape.

8:03 Dueling guitars!  Not as cool as dueling banjos, but good enough.

8:01 What’s the point of all the expensive video monitors and stage decorations when the camera spends all the time focused on the artists anyway?  Maybe that money could go to, I don’t know, the sound system?

8:00 Brad’s starting the show with Keith.  If Brad’s vocal’s any indication, the sound isn’t too hot this year.

7:57 Taylor Swift’s planning some shenanigans on stage tonight.  Yay?

7:54 Kid Rock is saying I’d never guess, in a million guesses, who’ll be playing guitar with him on stage tonight as he sings “All Summer Long.”  If it’s Warren Zevon, he gets mad props.

7:49 Speaking of Swift, her album’s on track to sell in the 500-600k range, on par with the latest studio albums from Carrie Underwood, Rascal Flatts and Dixie Chicks, but not quite reaching the levels of the previous Flatts and Chicks albums.   Interestingly enough, 500k-ish is what the Shania hits compilation sold its first week.  It should be interesting to see if she can school the competition again when she returns.

7:46 So what are you looking forward to more, readers?  CMT Giants: Alan Jackson, or CMT Crossroads: Def Leppard & Taylor Swift?

7:29 Jason Aldean’s new single is being debuted tonight – “She’s Country.”  It’s in his words, “More rockin’ than ‘Hicktown’.”   Yay?

7:28 Anyone hoping that Keith Urban would do his own instrumental album can keep dreaming.   He doesn’t like instrumentals!

7:19 Very excited to learn that Sugarland’s performing “Love.”

7:14 Kellie Pickler’s singing “The Best Days of Your Life” and Keith Urban’s doing “Sweet Thing.”  Also of note: Lance Smith has no social skills.

7:10 Little tidbits about the songs being performed tonight.  Miranda’s doing “More Like Her”, James Otto’s doing “Just Got Started Lovin’ You”, and Lady Antebellum is performing “Love Don’t Live Here.”

7:06: It’s all about the red carpet on CMT right now.  The real fun starts in 54 minutes.   Post a comment and let us know you’re here!

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Filed under CMA Awards, Live Blog

254 Responses to 2008 CMA Awards Live Blog

  1. LynnNo Gravatar

    I read that Kellie Pickler is singing her Swift co-write “Best Days of Your Life.”

    Feel free to give red carpet snippets. I’m bored at work!

  2. LynnNo Gravatar

    You’re too quick for me. I’ll stay silent. :)

  3. LynnNo Gravatar

    So far, we’ve got…umm, one country song? It’s going to be a long night. lol.

  4. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    So, he won’t be picking up his friend, Brad’s, album?

  5. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I love it how it’s good that country songs are “rockin'”…

  6. LynnNo Gravatar

    Just to clarify, by country I meant “More Like Her” (not “She’s Country”).

    Ouch. I’m assuming Urban and Paisley are friends. ;)

  7. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Maybe not so much anymore.

  8. Jake Owen looks like a dressed up janitor.

    Oh, I’m here.

  9. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Oh, not me.

  10. I had figured that Julianne Hough, being generally adorable and charming, might have a viable career as a “television personality” after her music career inevitably dries up… But her hosting on this Red Carpet non-event is not making a very strong case for her.

  11. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    The 2008 CMA predictions winner is here.

  12. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Welcome, Jonathan! I’m not getting the preshow here; Alex is trumping it.

  13. Yay for live blog time!

  14. Re: 7:49P

    All credit to Swift and her team for knowing how to market their product in the web 2.0 world: Other than the new Raconteurs album, which was recorded, pressed, and shipped to retail in under two months, I can’t recall the last time that an album with even a moderately high profile didn’t leak online well in advance of its street date. That they were able to keep Fearless under wraps so well surely helped those first-week sales figures.

  15. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Lance got more excited about Taylor’s magic pants than I’m comfortable with.

  16. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Taylor Swift’s magic pants. Enough said.

  17. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Taylor said that she bought her album in “like 27 minutes” after its release. She so bought it digitally.

  18. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    @Jonathan: I saw quite a few album cuts used for teenage girl slide shows on YouTube.

  19. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Welcome, Gaby! I wish you could stay longer tonight!

  20. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Oops, I meant “27 seconds.”

  21. i love watching these men play guitar :)

  22. Yes, she released 5 of the album cuts in advance, which is where those YouTube fan clips came from, but they kept the full album off of the Torrents and file-sharing sites.

  23. Kid Rock had better let poor Warren Zevon rest in peace…

  24. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Kids, if you ever start a band, make sure that all the sound equipment is adequate.

  25. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Ah, I think Brad’s doing alright…

  26. i did love carrie’s dress though! shots for everyone when she changes :)

  27. Good Lord, Nicole Kidman’s face…

    And why did I not go with my gut on Single of the Year???

  28. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Groundhog Day begins.

  29. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Oops, forgot to predict this one.

  30. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Should have known.

  31. Seriously? Weezy’s going to be at the CMAs? Where isn’t he showing up this year?

  32. BrianNo Gravatar

    Kevin- I think you should check out some old Vince Gill tapes as host. He got quite a few dirty little jokes over the years and is generally regarded as one of the better- if not best- hosts in CMA history. Paisley was really good in that opening and has good timing.

    Understatement Alert: Carrie Underwood is gorgeous

    Good win for King George. It’s refreshing that in a time when country music is doing everything it can to get away from traditional sound that it still finds time to play and reward Mr. Strait.

  33. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Is this the American Music Awards or the Country Music Association awards?

    Kellie Pickler, in dominatrix mode.

  34. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Blake, you should publish the rest of your Patty interview: “A conversation with Patty Loveless Redux”

  35. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    I’ve seen all the Vince CMA’s, Brian. Each and every last one. I thought Brad’s timing was terrible and his jokes too close to insulting for the CMA’s. I really don’t find the man funny, though I’m used to being in the minority on that one.

  36. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Yes, Patty reminisced about the days when the CMAs were held at the Grand Ole Opry House. And they played country music on country awards shows.

  37. line dance at the CMA’s! what a concept

  38. Why did the cast of I Love Money just come out in the middle of Alan Jackson’s performance?

  39. Jackson looks bored as crap.

  40. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I liked this at first, but really don’t like it anymore.

  41. i am so tired of this father/daughter duo being EVERYWHERE.

  42. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    If your songwriting career fails you, try working as a scriptwriter. Those are apparently needed in Nashville, judging from the presentations so far.

    Jennifer Nettles is the 4th (3rd solo) woman ever to win Song of the Year with “Stay.” Impressive. (K.T. Oslin, Gretchen Peters, Matraca Berg)

  43. The fact that Jewel is using “Stronger Woman” to pimp lipstick is more than a little ironic given that the video featured a woman proclaiming her self-liberation by literally smearing off make-up.

  44. Just got here in time to see line dancers…he did look bored.

  45. Happy that Jennifer won, it deserved it.

  46. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    “Stay” was my favorite of the five.

    No, I’m afraid the Classic CMA Moments list will need no editing after tonight’s ceremony.

  47. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    And Kevin and Dan take the lead, thanks to Robert Plant & Alison Krauss.

  48. BrianNo Gravatar

    Kevin- Agree to disagree on Paisley’s performance so far tonight.

    The left side of the stage tonight is apparently the really awful sound system side tonight. Jackson at least recognized that and adjusted his voice to sound passable.

    I’ll set the over/under at 27 months before we hear Jennifer Nettles is going out on her own.

  49. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Hey, Lynn, we’re getting our wish! Yay Miranda!

    Welcome, Jordan!

    Dang you Kevin and Dan!

  50. i think acousitic is going to be the best bet for actually sounding like a decent singer at this awards show

  51. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I love this!

  52. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Early thoughts:

    *Carrie seems poised, a natural for this kind of thing. We’ll see if she supplies any humor, but I’ll settle for classy and professional.

    *Miranda sings a ballad and I still think she’s going to kick my tail at any second.

    *Can we just ban the Cyrus family for one year?

  53. That was a really good performance. Probably the best I’ve seen on an award show in a while.

  54. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Miranda has changed my mind. It will be difficult to surpass that performance. She should be a factor in these awards for the next twenty years.

    Although my prediction arrogance is looking bad in retrospect, I am happy that Robert Plant now owns a CMA award. Zeppelin rocks!

  55. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    8:34: I agree.

  56. Miranda sounds awesome.

    On another note, Kevin, are you going to let anyone else live-blog this evening? :)

  57. They look good, they don’t sound bad on my TV so that’s good. I’m a little tired of hearing “Love Don’t Live Here” by now though.

  58. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Welcome, Diamond!

  59. Miranda showcased that she has more power behind her voice than she’s often credited for even on a relatively subdued ballad, but I definitely agree that she’ll need the Female Vocalist win for “More Like Her” to perform better than the mid-20s where her singles typically lose their momentum.

    I still prefer Little Big Town, but Lady Antebellum sound significantly better than I expected them to.

  60. “Okay, gotta say I’m digging the female guitarist with the Pippi Longstocking ‘do.”

    I was thinking the same!

  61. SheaNo Gravatar

    LOL, that’s a male guitarist with the pippi longstocking ‘do!

  62. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’m not sure who I should be rooting for, the people who were my picks or my predictions!

  63. Really?! That’s even cooler!

  64. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    8:36: Just what I was thinkin’.

  65. DiamondNo Gravatar

    I just saw that “Waiting On a Woman” took Best Video. That’s a good choice, I think. I appreciate Paisley always going the extra mile in his videos.

  66. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Martina always seems to ruin the bad sound system excuse on these shows.

  67. I’m still not sure how I feel about this song yet.

  68. BrianNo Gravatar

    Because this matters in my world. In the battle of HD I have the rankings like this.

    1. Carrie Underwood
    2. Kellie Pickler
    3. Hillary from Lady Antebellum
    4. Miranda Lambert

  69. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’m not big on the song myself, but she does sound good.

  70. Um, Pat Benetar comprehensively outsang Martina on that Crossroads episode they did together…

    I haven’t heard this single before: Sounds like McBride is singing her usual uplift pap over the production from the new Taylor Swift album. No, thank you.

  71. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I never think Rodney sounds too good on these shows.

  72. I seen him live twice and I wasn’t impressed either time. This song is bad…bet it’ll go #1.

  73. at least he is more in tune than the acm’s…its not painful this time

  74. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Rodney is Toby Keith Lite on this one. Not that that’s a bad thing.

  75. It’s, It’s, It’s, It’s Bad.

  76. I guess Curb freaked out when “Invisibly Shaken” bombed and is trying to rebound with an easy patriotic hit. Great.

  77. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Nashville, TN-The city’s supply of banjos, fiddles and mandolins went missing today around 6 p.m. The police investigation unit is currently working the case, but has been shorthanded this week due to security needs associated with an ’80s arena rock concert at the Sommet Center scheduled for Wednesday night. Sargeant Kid Rock says that a few instruments are still available, but are only to be operated in conjuction with screaming electric guitars and paint-by-number, positive uptempo songs.

  78. is it to much to hope that rascal flatts doesn’t win this

  79. I wish Invisibly Shaken had done better.

  80. SheldonNo Gravatar

    I want to scream on record and win a shiny CMA just like the good ol’ boys of Rascal Flatts!

  81. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Funny, Blake.

    I agree, Gaby.

  82. Rascal Flatts have won this so many times it’s not even remotely important to them anymore.

  83. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Leeann, I’m finally back! I haven’t seen it yet, but I’m so glad that Miranda kept it acoustic. When she added full band to her other ballads, it blanded them out. She shines in this format and I think her voice is only getting stronger!

    “Nothing against Lady Antebellum. I’m just wondering why so many of the new acts want to be eighties rock stars.” I’m with you on this! Not only in production, but also in how they approach concerts.

  84. I was really realy hoping that Little Big Town would’ve won, but I was kidding myself there.

  85. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Jay Demarcus stole the pleasure of criticizing his outfit. Now, I wish he would blast Rascal Flatts’ music and save me even more trouble.

    Six years in a row for the Flatts. Pray to the high heavens that the CMA has a seven-year itch next year.

    Is Joe Don thinking his son for the spit-up bibs or the dirty diapers?

  86. is it too much to ask for this to be a little more interesting…i understand its still the 8pm hour but this playing it safe crap is boring

  87. BrianNo Gravatar

    Let’s compare notes.

    America is:

    a high school prom
    a Springsteen song
    a man on the moon
    one nation under God

    What do you got?

  88. Gotta leave in 5 minutes…Top Chef starts tonight, I doubt there will be anything interesting happening tonight anyway…I’ll check in during commercials.

  89. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Yay, you’re here, Lynn! You can’t watch it yet though, right?

  90. Nevermind it’s at 10 not 9

  91. BrianNo Gravatar

    Had there been a line in Rodney’s song that went:

    It’s a horse with no name

    It may have elevated to my favorite song ever.

  92. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    No no no no nooo! Voters: Is it only because they bring in the dough? Why?! Please explain.

  93. i think we need a Carrie wardrobe malfunction, kid rock and lil wayne saying “FU” to the sensors, and some water pouring down on someone at some point in the show

    then we will have something to talk about tomorrow

  94. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    For those who can’t watch the show now, be sure to visit CMW’s live blog, at Country California (which explains the time delay), after we’re done here.


  95. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Leeann- Nope, not yet. I’ve got “House” playing from DVR right now. I think House + blog is actually the best combo. ;)

  96. I knew they’d do the full dress-up for Taylor. Hilarity.

  97. is watching it on mute just mean at this point

    if she wins female VOCALIST I am boycotting country music

  98. I’m also boycotting if she wins.

    My Mother: “This isn’t Country” She’s never heard of Taylor before.

  99. DiamondNo Gravatar

    The CMAs, brought to you by same folks who brought you “High School Musical.” Plenty of distraction from the swift vocal performance taking place.

  100. She’s less spirited than usual. I wonder if she’s sick or something.

  101. This is the worst perfomance so far…did she just do a wardrobe change on stage?

  102. SheldonNo Gravatar

    QUICK! Someone fuel the jet and go and bring Dolly home from Canada…CMA needs her BAD!
    The “Taylor Swift should be studying” jokes are recycled from the early 90’s when little Leann was a spring chicken
    Cue up the camera – Reba should be gearing up for her semi-annual award-show boo-hoo.

  103. if a stunt at the end of a horrible vocal is highlighted over that horrible vocal in the reviews, I am gonna be pissed

    cute dress carrie!

  104. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I love House, but we wait to watch when it comes out on DVD because we hate to wait from week to week.

  105. Umm why is Underwear Boy here…Then agian Kid Rock is performing so…

  106. I daresay “All Summer Long” actually sounds more closely related to country music than most of what we’ve heard so far. Kill me.

  107. Somewhere, Hank III is stabbing something…

  108. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Hmmmmmmm, Kid Rock… George Jones has just turned off the T.V and headed for bed.

  109. BrianNo Gravatar

    If Taylor Swift were 40 and not cute she would never get played on country radio. She is a pretty good songwriter but just not a good singer. her lower register is just not there.

    I generally like Kid Rock but this is unnecessary on the CMA’s. At least he sounds decent on the bad side of the stage.

  110. Dude! Lil’ Wayne is one of the guitarists!

  111. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Taylor and Underwear Boy almost locked lips, with Miley Cyrus seething backstage.

    Beverly Keel, the resident celebrity columnist in Nashville, wrote an article this week about how much money Taylor pumped back into her career. Although I’m generally a defender of Swift, some of the loot could be used on vocal lessons. It would only make her craft and her career that much better.

    I’m inviting Trisha, Gary, Dierks, Patty, Lee Ann and LBT to my place tomorrow night and hosting my own awards show.

  112. dan thats just what i was thinking

  113. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Now Kid Rock suddenly changing into a wedding gown….that would be entertaining.

  114. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Swift sounded nervous and clearly off pitch, but seeing the adults twice her age behave as they have tonight, I hardly blame her for lacking musical direction.

  115. BrianNo Gravatar

    Kid Rock sounded fine on the bad side of the stage. Might say a lot about the sound system on that side of the stage.

    Agreed with Dan at 9:05

  116. What Time is this ending at?

  117. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    What a stupid song!

    Isn’t it time for another award?

  118. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Re: George Strait performance

    This is a Viagra commercial waiting to happen.

  119. MOST BORED AUDIENCE EVER! Cracking up.

  120. I don’t like this one either what’s going on?

  121. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Jan Howard and Jeannie Seely have just turned off the CMA’s and started a game of Scrabble…

  122. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I still think my girl, Miranda, turned in the best performance so far.

  123. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Do I still like country music?

  124. K two singles debut tonight and both are list songs, Jason’s I like a little better because I’m not a big fan of patriotic songs.

  125. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Otis Redding, the Allman Brothers and… Jason Aldean.

    She may be country, but this song is not.

  126. It’s sad that Kid Rock out-country’ed (and outperformed) many of the artists who’ve performed thus far.

  127. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I hate this one too.

  128. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Blake, Can I come over to your house tomorrow night? This would be an entirely different show if those were tonight’s performers.

  129. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    Leeann, have you heard any country music yet?

  130. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    @Sheldon: Hilarious. Love me some Scrabble, and I’m tempted to join them.

  131. Our genre has become a mockery of itself.

  132. It’s better than Kid Rocks performance.

  133. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    Now Jeannie Seely has a potty mouth that’ll put Brad to shame. She should co-host next year.

  134. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Good point, Kevin.

  135. The highlight of my senior year was the graduation night beer party.

  136. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Dang foiled again!

  137. Lady A! Not bad. Little Big Town finally won something.

  138. That was a little dissapointing…Three of the nominees had #1 singles why them?

  139. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    The LA Times always does a blog on country award shows. These are the grades it has handed out so far:

    Kid Rock: D
    Taylor Swift: B+
    Rodney Atkins: D
    Martina McBride: C-
    Lady Antebllum: D
    Miranda Lambert: A
    Alan Jackson: B-
    Kellie Pickler: C-

    Brad Paisley & Keith Urban: B-

    Any disagreement? How would you guys grade the performances?

    (PS. I’d be flunking out of school if these were my grades!)

  140. Other Than Taylor being too high I’d say about right I guess

  141. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Thanks Blake…I have pushed the Scrabble board aside in favour (Canadian spelling?) of a shot of Crown Royal…Looks like Linda and her little girl now have matching bookends.

  142. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Pretty accurate, though some should be rated lower.

  143. What can I say, I have a flair for picking mediocrity.

  144. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    I went to the dentist earlier this evening. I requested he go easy on the novacaine because I had to write tonight. Big mistake.

  145. Say what you will about Paisley, but he just gave us the only ‘country’ musical moment of the night so far.

  146. A fiddle? Wtf I thought this was the CMAs? i want more taylor…

  147. why not give reba her own performance slot?

  148. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    I halfway expect Reba to start screaming out, “Put a girl in it!”.

  149. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Uh-oh someone forgot to plug in Reba’s mic…someone’s gonna catch hell after the show…

  150. DiamondNo Gravatar

    This is a good performance, especially with Reba’s mic on.

  151. I love Reba, but it was compleatly pointless to have her in that song. She sounded out of place.

  152. And Reba’s interruption provides the second country moment of the night.

  153. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Funny, Blake!

    I do love Reba.

  154. “If you grew up loving country music like us, you’d be excited to be on this stage”…A little I guess, I’d get to be on T.V.

  155. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    9:31: can’t stop laughing!

    itto to 9:30 and 9:28.

  156. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    I read on the Tennessean that the good stuff is coming during the commercials!

    “During the commercial breaks the crowd at the CMA Awards is being entertained by classic performances from past award shows, including “I Was Country When Country Wasn’t Cool” with Barbara Mandrell and George Jones, as well as poignant moments from Johnny Cash and Ronnie Milsap.”

    Dan @ 147. LOL!

  157. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Jennifer thanked her lawyer? Does that lawsuit have anything to do with it?

  158. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Julianne grew up on Shania and Dixie Chicks…but she does remember her folks talking about a pioneer in the industry – she thinks her name was Trisha Yearwood…

  159. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Nobody’s noted it yet, but I enjoy the new promo designs this year. The gold/black meshes well, and the list of names in the background is the only way to see some of my favorite country stars on the screen.

  160. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Thanks Lynn, why the hell can’t the CMA show those clips ON air? Mandrell would look like Kitty Wells compared to what we’ve witnessed tonite!

  161. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    @Lynn: Dan stole that line from me, but in Nashville, theft is A-OK. How do you think so many redneck song ideas and ’80s hair band musical accompaniments circulate around here. Country folks is stealin’!

  162. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    Any CU writers who want something in the post, send me a message and I’ll type it in. The software doesn’t allow multiple editors.

  163. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Carrie is laughing everytime they come back from a commercial. How about letting the rest of us in on the entertaining portion of the show? By the way, she looks incredible on HD. No surprise.

  164. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    9:40: Yeah!

  165. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Brad’s music is louder than him.

    Kevin, I’m going to have to give in and admit that I’ve not been impressed with Paisley’s hosting tonight. He seems to be flat.

  166. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Props to Paisley. A heartfelt performance of a well-written song. Rare in these parts.

  167. Wouldn’t it be great if Lee Ann and Josh sang together?

  168. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Dan: “Country music hates itself.” So true. It’s sad.

  169. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I still liked his last album much better…not just because I’m losing tonight!

  170. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Two of country’s finest vocalists are…presenting. Here’s hoping Turner and Womack return to the fold as performers and nominees next year.

    Everybody loves George Strait, but this is overkill. My predictions are going to pot, and I blame the CMA voters.

  171. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I think George has gotta be right. He does have the best fans. I want to see how long his career lasts!

  172. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    So you’re bitter too, Blake?

  173. CharlieNo Gravatar

    thanks for doing this guys, always a highlight of the blog year for me

  174. BrianNo Gravatar

    “So we know where the 90’s rockers go to keep their careers going. Where can we find the 90’s country stars?”

    I hear Wade Hayes is in the studio with Timbaland working on his next album

  175. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Hi Charlie and all of the others that I haven’t welcomed so far! We’re really glad to have you all!

  176. SheldonNo Gravatar

    There is no reason that Lee Ann could not have sang “Last Call”…And what happened to the big hair, Lee Ann?
    Carrie has went to change for the 17th time, but just realized Lee Ann swiped her dress out of her dressing room

  177. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Fine, I predict Dan will win…no wait, Kevin…I dunno…

  178. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’m not really digging this Urban song.

  179. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    C’mon, you mean a little offense to Paisley, right?:)

  180. I’m not a fan of the lyrics but the music sounds fine, not entirely country but it’s Keith.

  181. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    This show is so friendly and stale and sterile, I’m almost longing for John Rich to start swinging bottles, for Toby Keith to steal stage time to talk politics or George Jones to drive into the arena drunk on his John Deere.

  182. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Okay, I’m touched. My heart isn’t so hard after all.

  183. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Someone help; I can’t tell if Im watching the CMT Flameworthy awards or the CMAs…Lord knows the quality is the same

  184. Leeann WardNo Gravatar


  185. Hoo boy. That raised some goosebumps.

  186. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Although it’s not a very cohesive story song, Underwood gave it all her glory. But I’m afraid that last, long high note may have taken all of the air out of her tires. I’m hoping she has a few words left to finish hosting and to make her acceptance speech.

  187. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Uh, she sang the heck out of that.

  188. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    This is a kick in the gut!! Seriously? They’re making Vince do this?

  189. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I predicted Carrie, right?

  190. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    10:08: Poor Vince…

  191. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Looks like Amy has been serving up too many homemade pies…

  192. JOHNNo Gravatar

    a high school prom
    a Springsteen song
    a man on the moon
    one nation under God


  193. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Underwood wins for a third consecutive year. Will Lee Ann Womack, Miranda Lambert or Taylor Swift challenge next year?

    My favorite comment of the evening: With Vince Gill announcing the HOF inductees, “I don’t know if any of them are here tonight, but…” That’s a definitive no, Vince. Not one of them.

  194. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’m tired.

  195. I love this Sugarland song, it should be their next single.

  196. JOHNNo Gravatar

    it was performed earlier tonight im not sure who performed it though and i donk know the aritst so if anyone can give me that info …….

  197. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    John, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was that Rodney Atkins song, though I didn’t really closely listen to the lyrics.

  198. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    John – Rodney Atkins. It’s called: “It’s America”

  199. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    “Steve Earle” would’ve been fun.

  200. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    By far not one of my favorite Sugarland songs, although its musical and lyrical themes made me pray Bono would arrive from the shadows.

    Best performances so far are two women: Underwood and Lambert. Darius Rucker and Brad Paisley (who share producer Frank Rogers) are close behind.

    Carrie received a Patty Loveless endorsement. That’s all I need to hear. With the lack of female artists at the top of the genre, I expect Carrie to break Reba and Martina’s record in the next few years.

  201. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I really like this Otto song!

  202. KathyPNo Gravatar

    James Otto front and center. I could have sworn I heard him say on the red carpet that he was going to sing his new single off the upcoming album. WTF?

  203. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar

    Reba did get the four-peat (1984-1987) but I think that Carrie could match it next year.

  204. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    I’m such a stupidhead. I’ve retracted my statement.

  205. Andrew L.No Gravatar

    So who was the surprise special guest? Was that Reba or what?

  206. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Did I miss the surprise guest? Or was it just not surprising enough for me?

  207. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Kevin, out of curiosity, what are you top 5 favorite Carrie Underwood songs? Her best country songs. Blake?

    Sugarland’s top 5? Anyone?

  208. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I guess Andrew feels the same way as me.

  209. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    I’m going to spend the weekend on YouTube watching old CMA Awards moments. Anyone want to join?

    Just waitin’ for Shania now.

  210. Andrew L.No Gravatar

    Yeah, it’s funny. There were hyping the surprise guest before every commercial break and now they seem to have stopped mentioning it.

  211. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar


    Carrie Underwood
    1. I Know You Won’t
    2. I’ll Stand By You
    3. Just a Dream
    4. Before He Cheats
    5. Alone

    1. Very Last Country Song
    2. Stand Back Up
    3. We Run
    4. Something More
    5. Stay

  212. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Apparently, the surprise guest was Reba.

  213. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I don’t think Palin jokes are prmitted at the CMAs.

  214. I bet the Wailers are getting sick of hanging out with Kenny.

  215. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    @Lynn: After the show, I’ll put a list together.

    If the Country Music Hall of Fame is designed to honor those who have influenced future generations and made a distinct impression on the genre, when is Jimmy Buffett’s wall space being cleared?

  216. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Oh, that’s what I was afraid of. She wasn’t much of a surprise to me, though.

  217. KathyPNo Gravatar

    Special guest?

  218. Andrew L.No Gravatar

    Okay that song lasted forever.

  219. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    What’s that I hear? A steel guitar?

  220. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    You’re gonna miss this
    You’re gonna want this back

    Somehow I don’t believe he’s singing about this ceremony. Decent performance of a decent sentimental song.

  221. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Thanks Kevin, Blake. I promise to give them another shot. :)

  222. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I agree with Dan about Trace.

  223. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Okay, at least he didn’t kiss Keith.

  224. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    Kenny, The Wailers and Jimmy Buffett all conspired to get Reese Witherspoon tipsy before she walked on stage. A little salt, a little lime, a lot of tequila.

    The city of Nashville is changing names to Margaritaville, effective immediately.

  225. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    10:39- I should think about taking that up.

  226. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Blake, didn’t you once work for a newspaper?

  227. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I shoulda just voted with Dan across the board?

  228. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    The thing about Vince is that he rarely sounded as though was reading, but Brad does.

  229. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    If you drink from the well, do not swill too much. (points at Reese Witherspoon)

  230. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    I imagine I’ll regret saying this in the morning (points at Reese Witherspoon again), but it’s fairly appropriate that the Eagles are the last performers, as the CMAs have gone to the birds lately.

  231. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I know a couple like the one in this song.

  232. DiamondNo Gravatar

    Didn’t Joe Walsh try to kill Harry Potter?

  233. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Reese Witherspoon diary entry – Nov.12, 2008.

    “Dear Diary,
    today, I went out to Hurricane Mills and toured Loretts Lynn’s mansion. That Crisco does one proud every time! (Cool orange kitchen, btw.)
    Amd lookee here! Loretty is a’ havin’ a yard sale! Think Im gonna buy me one of them ball gowns, cut off one sleeve and wear it to the CMAs tonite! I just want to matter!!!!!”

  234. KathyPNo Gravatar

    I like the suits. A freshing change to ball caps, cutoff sleeve t-shirts and holes in jeans.

  235. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    @Sheldon: I’d swear Loretta put a little somethin’ somethin’ in her homemade brownies.

  236. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’d care if she were singing…

  237. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Kevin, Kenny agrees with you!

  238. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Actually, I enjoyed the Eagles in concert. Outrageous prices (and I only paid for one reason, and it wasn’t the Eagles). But, if you grew up on the music, the songs-the classics-carry the evening without any hoopla. The Eagles are also sticklers about their sound, and they had the clearest sound of any band I’ve seen in concert. They should have done the set-up for tonight.

  239. Blake BoldtNo Gravatar

    I wish Shania would’ve received such a warm reception when she was nominated in previous years.

    An unsurprising, often unfulfilled evening with a few bright spots. Chesney certainly stirs up hundreds of thousands of fans, so his win is ultimately deserved.

  240. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    Hey hey hey! I did vote with you! That deserves a teensy bit of credit, huh?

    They are on here now! I’m kinda over it already.

  241. Lynn DouglasNo Gravatar

    “I wish Shania would’ve received such a warm reception when she was nominated in previous years.” No joke. I hear she’s been writing up a storm recently. I think her new album might be interesting.

  242. SheldonNo Gravatar

    Blake,A little of Doolittle’s moonshine perhaps?
    Man, Its good to see Shania again…almost makes up for not seeing my Dolly tonite…and whh, oh why, after the winner is announced, must the CMa show a freakin’ video we’ve all seen WAY too much when we could be seeing the audience reaction to the awards? I used to call in sick to watch these award shows live – the CMA awards has become a cheap whore of what it once was…Used to be that the CMAs were the Tiffany of all the awards, now, they are just a 3-hour advertisement touting whats wrong with the genre…As much as I love country music, and I do love it, I hope this telecast gets a historic low rating…maybe then the producers will revert back to the tried and true format that we all know and love. Tommorow night I will be front and centre (brag, brag) at Dolly’s concert in winnipeg, Manitoba – She’ll remind me why I love country – God knows the CMA didn’t…

  243. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Dan, you should have voted with us, you subversive guy!

  244. Kevin J. CoyneNo Gravatar


    True that. This is our victory. Let us rejoice and be glad.

  245. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    Sweet! I’m cool!

  246. Leeann WardNo Gravatar

    I’m sure glad I’m safe, though I’ll admit to a little “jealousy” too.

  247. Hey, y’all….Just back in N’ville for ‘post party’ festivities…I was at the Big Machine party (one of the 2 biggest label parties with Universal) and all the Label artists except Reba were there (Kid Rock, Mark Wills and Eric Durrance were as well). Then went to a bar where artists like Gabe Garcia and Randy Rogers and the like were present. It was fun. On my flight back to N’ville from Los Angles, Coffey from Nashville Star was on the same plane…lol. So that makes 2 Nashville Star 2008 alums in one day…

    As for my CMA predictions, I got 10 outta 12 right (if my favorite didn’t win, I pegged who else might win)…

    Anyway, ‘Twas a fun evening for me and many here in Nashville…

  248. Lynn:

    Carrie Underwood
    1. I Know You Won’t
    2. I’ll Stand By You
    3. Before He Cheats
    4. Just a Dream
    5. Jesus, Take the Wheel

    1. Very Last Country Song
    2. Stand Back Up
    3. Stay
    4. Baby Girl
    5. Fall Into Me

  249. GidgicdiereNo Gravatar

    Excellent web pages Successes and prosperity to you!

  250. Rascal Flatts for vocals … no better choice. But really, Jennifer Nettles with the song of the year???