2007 CMA Nominations


  • Kenny Chesney
  • Brad Paisley
  • Rascal Flatts
  • George Strait
  • Keith Urban

Who’s In: George Strait

Who’s Out: Brooks & Dunn

George Strait replaced Brooks & Dunn instead of Carrie Underwood, which was my prediction. This indicates a strong amount of support for the Hall of Famer. Urban’s hanging in there too, and given his other noms, his low profile earlier this year didn’t harm him.

Male Vocalist

  • Kenny Chesney
  • Brad Paisley
  • George Strait
  • Josh Turner
  • Keith Urban

Who’s In: Josh Turner

Who’s Out: Alan Jackson

I went 5 for 5 in this race, with Turner earning his first nomination. Can the traditionalist bloc carry him to a win?

Female Vocalist

  • Alison Krauss
  • Miranda Lambert
  • Martina McBride
  • Reba McEntire
  • Carrie Underwood

Who’s In: Alison Krauss, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire

Who’s Out: Sara Evans, Faith Hill, Gretchen Wilson

It was painful watching Evans stand there as the first name read for this category began with K. I expected Lambert, but I’m surprised by McEntire. I thought the impact of her new hit single came too late to push her into the race. Then again, I’m seeing a strong showing from MCA on this ballot. They must be happy over there.

Vocal Duo

  • Big & Rich
  • Brooks & Dunn
  • Montgomery Gentry
  • Sugarland
  • The Wreckers

Who’s In: Sugarland

Who’s Out: Van Zant

Very predictable. Sugarland becoming a duo had to end in one act’s elimination, and Van Zant was the least successful of last year’s five nominees.

Vocal Group

  • Alison Krauss & Union Station featuring Jerry Douglas
  • Dixie Chicks
  • Emerson Drive
  • Little Big Town
  • Rascal Flatts

Who’s In: Dixie Chicks, Emerson Drive

Who’s Out: Lonestar, Sugarland

Well, I’ll be damned!

Horizon Award

  • Jason Aldean
  • Rodney Atkins
  • Little Big Town
  • Kellie Pickler
  • Taylor Swift


  • Dierks Bentley, Long Trip Alone
  • Vince Gill, These Days
  • Brad Paisley, 5th Gear
  • George Strait, It Just Comes Natural
  • Keith Urban, Love, Pain & The Whole Crazy Thing

The big shock: an album nomination for Dierks Bentley. It’s a fantastic record, but didn’t set the charts on fire like his previous album did. I had predicted Tim McGraw would get a nomination, but he failed to get a nomination for a studio album for the first time in more than a decade.


  • “Anyway” – Martina McBride
  • “Before He Cheats” – Carrie Underwood
  • “Lost in This Moment” – Big & Rich
  • “Ticks” – Brad Paisley
  • “Wrapped” – George Strait


  • “Anyway” – Martina McBride/Brad Warren/Brett Warren
  • “Before He Cheats” – Josh Kear/Chris Tompkins
  • “Give it Away” – Bill Anderson/Buddy Cannon/Jamey Johnson
  • “Lost in This Moment” – John Rich/Keith Anderson/Rodney Clawson
  • “Stupid Boy” – Dave Berg/Deanna Bryant/Sarah Buxton

Musical Event

  • “Because of You” – Reba McEntire & Kelly Clarkson
  • “Find Out Who Your Friends Are” – Tracy Lawrence, Kenny Chesney & Tim McGraw
  • “Hey Good Lookin’ (Live)” – Jimmy Buffett, George Strait & Alan Jackson
  • “Missing You” – Alison Krauss & John Waite
  • “The Reason Why” – Vince Gill & Alison Krauss

Music Video

  • “Anyway” – Martina McBride
  • “Before He Cheats” – Carrie Underwood
  • “Moments” – Emerson Drive
  • “Online” – Brad Paisley
  • “You Save Me” – Kenny Chesney


  • Eddie Bayers Jr.
  • Jerry Douglas
  • Dann Huff
  • Mac McAnally
  • Randy Scruggs


  1. Congrats Keith, 4 noms well deserved. Happy for Anyway and Lost in this Moment for song too! Online is the best video–hope it wins!

  2. I, Myself am a HUGE Sara Evans fan, and shocked but at the same time not shocked at the nominations. Unfortenetely for Sara, Timing wasn’t right with her new single, But expect her to come roaring back next year. Her new single “As If” already a top 20 hit, and her Greatest Hits album will be released October 9th, With 4 new songs on that album. Not to mention, She’s currently in the studio working on a new album. AND to top it all off, She’s tours VERY heavily. 2007 just wasn’t her year, but I promise you that 2008 CMA & ACM awards will be great, and Sara will fire up the charts!

    -Taylor (tnei)

  3. Surprises for this show:

    1. The Chicks getting in, obviously, probably meaning the voters were grasping at the straws for the fifth group.

    2. Pickler getting in for Horizon because she hasn’t been that successful at radio. RHH and IW only got into the top 15.

    3. Sara Evans shutout (speaks for itself).

    Really excited to see Martina get nominations for such an amazing song.

  4. I am kind of surprised they picked Sara to announce the nominations and then didn’t give her a single one. That must have sucked for her. I agree–I think she will have a huge year next year.

  5. Congratulations Keith Urban!! So proud for him! I also felt kind of bad for Sara, but maybe next year! Was very surprised at album nom for Dierks Bentley.

  6. Boy that Horizon award category is killer tough. Rodney, Jason, LBT all had great years and Taylor is fast on the rise, as is Kellie. I’d have to give it to LBT, but Rodney had 3 number 1s from the same CD.

  7. I love how they switched things up a lot this year. The Dixie Chicks, amaizing band no matter what anyone might think, earned their wayt through their success at the Grammy’s, Emerson Drive earned their first #1, Rodney Atkins is fresh off a #1 album and 3 #1 songs, Josh Turner finally gets the credit he deserves with male vocalist nom, Reba making female vocalist (although she is deserving of it) with only one song, a lot of surprises this year. I am disapointed to see Sara being shut out this year, but I do see why. After Cheatin’ hit its peak, she failed to live up to the albums rep with Colemine and You’ll Always Be My baby falling before the top 10. However her current progress with As If should put her in the nom next year.

    The biggest surprise for me however is Give It Away getting a song of the year nom. All though George is an all time fav of mine, I think that song is the worst he’s ever done. While the songwrighting on the track is good I just don’t think its better than Wrapped or It Just Comes Natural. I think he had better to show in this catagory.

  8. Cowboy,

    It’s always hard to figure out why something gets nominated when you don’t particularly like it, isn’t it? I agree with you that Strait had better written hits this year. I’d have been happier seeing Bruce Robison getting the nod for writing “Wrapped.” But I think having legendary writers behind “Give it Away” may have given it the edge. Who doesn’t love Whisperin’ Bill?

  9. The complete shutout of Tim McGraw and to a certain extent Faith Hill is surprising. They had another huge tour this year. I’m shocked that they didn’t at least get a Vocal Event mention for “I Need You”. That song definitely had a bigger impact than “Hey Good Lookin'” which was a hit in it’s original version over three years ago.

    I am glad to see Dixie Chicks nominated but they should have been last year. The fact that they waited until after the Grammy’s gave them so much recognition makes the CMA look kind of stupid. Also glad Josh Turner got a Male Vocalist nod.

    I would have liked to see Miranda Lambert get an Album of the Year nomination but I’m glad she’s in there for Female Vocalist. I felt bad for Sara Evans but it was a tough year for women in terms of radio hits and her momentum suffered a bit as a result. What I really would like to see is the CMA finally change gears with the Vocal Duo category. This year belongs to Sugarland, they definitely had a more significant year than Brooks & Dunn. I think Enjoy the Ride should be up for Album. Hopefully the CMA makes things interesting and recognizes a new act for the Duo category.

  10. I’m terrifically elated that George Strait received five CMA nominations. I agree with Kevin when he says that the single “Wrapped” was better than “Give it Away” for George–although the man can take a lackluster tune and take it to #1 with his voice and charisma.

    Not big on Brad, Keith, Kenny and RF, so I’m routing for George to pick up at least four CMAs: Best vocal, album, single, song. Don’t think the video with Alan Jackson/Jimmy Buffett should win. There are better. However, I’ll be overly pleased with the CMA members if George wins EOTY. George outshines every other nominee in my book even with less tour dates and less albums sold.

  11. I’m hoping that Martina wins Female Vocalist. She’s fantastic and I loved “Anyway”. Love Reba too, but I do not think she’s not done much except a duo with Kelly which to me sounded like a solo because Reba’s voice is so overpowering.

    I say give Carrie “Video of the Year” for Before He Cheats. But that’s all she really deserves winning right now. She’ll have more years to win more awards.

    Miranda will be a powerhouse in the years to come.
    Faith Hill being slighted—well, i don’t think she deserves to be on the list this year, nor SarA eVANS.




  13. I don’t think the CMAs owe the Dixie Chicks an apology (if anything, it’s the Chix who owe the CMAs an apology . I think AKUS would get the group award if it’s NOT given to Rascal Flatts

    Entertainer and Male Vocalist awards should go to Paisley
    Female Vocalist award should go to Underwood

  14. They probably don’t owe the CMA an apology but the CMA cetainly doesn’t owe them one either

    Besides the Chix said they didn’t consider themselves country so there is no reason for the CMA to nominate them for anything

  15. I can’t believe Berg/Tate/Tate weren’t nominated either for “If You’re Going Through Hell” or “Moments” in song of the year. Both are powerful songs (Moments especially) whose messages linger long after hearing the song.

  16. It cracks me up when people say that the Chicks aren’t country just because they have said they don’t feel like they fit the “Nashville” mold anymore. That really is just an excuse for people who don’t like them to keep them off the ballot and the radio. Also, as far as not fitting the mold, that seems to be changing (trendsetters, I dare say?). I feel like a lot of the new country albums coming out are being advertised as having a 70’s country/rock/early Eagles feel. Kevin, have you noticed this too?

    Besides rooting for the Chicks (who I don’t expect to win and will be content with anyone other than Rascal Flatts winning), I am rooting for Vince Gill and George Strait. I’m pretty young, but I’d take them over Paisley, Urban and Chesney anyday!!

  17. Lynn,

    It’s funny you say that. I was listening to a lot of Keith Urban just yesterday, and he’s awesome. One of my favorite acts. But his work has a lot less of the conventions of country music in it than Taking the Long Way does. Same goes for Little Big Town and Rascal Flatts, actually. Martie Maguire said herself that their latest album reminded her of a lot of seventies country music, and I think that whole melting pot – Eagles, Waylon Jennings, Emmylou Harris and the like – was their main reference point for the sound of the album. And Home was an entirely different beast, with shades of bluegrass throughout it.

    It’s funny, but I still don’t care much for Wide Open Spaces (the album), and I think it’s because it was so typically Nashville country. There are some moments on Fly that are also like that to an even greater fault, but they also started pushing the boundaries, too. They didn’t get my attention until they began to do so. Then again, it’s never a shock to see unit sales go down for an artist at the same time my interest rises in them. Perhaps me becoming a fan is the commercial kiss of death!

  18. I think CMA want to kill the career of Tim McGraw, but he don’t need one or several nomination to proved he’s still the GODFATHER of County Music for EVER. I don’t understand why he don’t get just one nomination her last album was the best performance in country music since “ME & My Gang” by Rascal Flatts , and that’s how to thank him for what he do for a Country Music. I’m just sicken by the CMA!!!

  19. Regarding Male Vocalist CMA, Album of the Year, Song & Single of the Year, and EOTY categories, I think the only true country artist is George Strait: has always been and continues to be the King.

    Josh Turner is a close second. He’s still young but he’ll be around much longer than the other nominees.

    Advice to CMA: This is a country music award show not a popularity/cross-over awards show. Stick to country and honor those who do stand by country and do it so very well.

  20. i really really thik keith urban deserves to win album of the eyar. it is such an overall amazing album and he explores so many new sounds. i think he is the most talented artist out there.

  21. Maureen, I disagree. While the CMA Awards shouldn’t shut out the country artists who are still “cookie-cutter country,” the CMA Awards should by no means ignore those who have experimented with style or crossed over into other genres. The music industry is all about evolution and change – that’s why I love it so much. If country fans are embracing these changes, why shouldn’t the industry recognize these artists?

    I wish that people would stop trying to widen the disconnect between the generations of fans. As a 21-year-old, I don’t want to be considerd “not a true country fan” if I enjoy Rascal Flatts or Keith Urban. We’ve got to stop pitting old against new. It is what it is. Let’s embrace the changes instead of alienating certain artists. I guarantee almost everyone in the country music industry – from the greats to the contemporary artists – appreciate each OTHER without prejudice. Why can’t the fans do the same?

  22. To Tara:

    Appreciate your comment. However, my intention is not to destroy these country fellows or country women because they are changing. I give them credit for being o pen to changing. However, if a singer considers himself/herself country, he/she should not cross over too much. One can make changes within the country spheres. I do not consider Keith Urban country. He’s more rock-n-roll to me. Same thing with Carrie. She’s overexposed and all over the place. George Strait is a pure country traditionalist. He ain’t crossing over. And everyone calls him “King George”.

  23. To Toby Flatts:

    Realize that the RF are steam rolling the Dixie Chicks. However, how the CMAs, ACMs ignored this wonderful, talented group of ladies is despicable. This is America and one should not be ostracized because one says something negative about the President. I agree that entertainers should not use the stage to sound off their political beliefs; however, this has been going on for ages by Actors, singers, etc. etc. and they are still working and honing their crafts. This disturbs me greatly. I think this whole scenario was done out of jealousy because of the Chicks great success. Toby Keith ain’t more patriotic than the Chicks.

  24. Maureen, let’s agree to disagree on the cross-over thing. But one comment – how does “overexposed” equate to “not country”? It doesn’t in my books.

    However, I’m with you 100% on your Dixie Chicks stance, even though I am a much bigger Rascal Flatts fan. The way the country music industry and fans have shut the Dixie Chicks is out is sad and pathetic.

  25. After reading these comments it strikes me as odd that people would say the CMA is trying to kill McGraw’s career. He and Faith are some of it’s biggest supporters and financial donors!

    As for country artists, George Strait has never once strayed from the traditional country line. For that, all of us true country fans and supporters owe him a debt of gratitude… Hall of Famer George Strait, that says it all!

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