Contemporary country mainstays Brooks & Dunn and Alan Jackson each walked away from the 37th annual Academy of Country Music (ACM) Awards last night (May 22) with three statuettes. "Where Were You
Contemporary country mainstays Brooks & Dunn and Alan Jackson each walked away from the 37th annual Academy of Country Music (ACM) Awards last night (May 22) with three statuettes. "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)," Jackson's tribute to victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the U.S., earned two of his honors: single and song of the year.
"I don't feel like I can accept the award for this song without sharing it and dedicating it to the thousands of people -- men, women and children -- who died and suffered and are still suffering all because of that cowardly and heartless attack on America and mankind," a choked-up Jackson said as he accepted the song of the year trophy. He also won his third top male vocalist award.
Brooks & Dunn, meanwhile, took their third entertainer of the year award and their eighth duo of the year award, as well as the video of the year honor for their "Only in America" clip. "We were willing to reload the guns and run at it again," Kix Brooks said of re-capturing the entertainer title. "That's what we did and it worked."
The pair's three wins made them the top all-time ACM winners with 16, passing Merle Haggard, who has 15 wins to his credit. "We're not counting and we're certainly not going to compare what we've done to Merle Haggard," Ronnie Dunn said backstage. "It'd take two lifetimes, maybe three, for us to do what Merle Haggard did."
Lost Highway's "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" soundtrack yielded two awards: album of the year, and top vocal event of the year for "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow," by the fictitious Soggy Bottom Boys.
Two categories saw long reigns end as Martina McBride won the top female vocalist prize and Lonestar picked up the vocal group of the year award. The categories had been dominated for the past three years by Faith Hill and the Dixie Chicks, respectively.
In the newcomer categories, Trick Pony took the top new vocal duo or group award, while the female honor went to Carolyn Dawn Johnson and the male award to Phil Vassar. "It's unbelievable! I still can't believe it. It's awesome," an excited Vassar proclaimed backstage. "Things have been going great. This fires me up. Sometimes you doubt yourself, then something like this comes along and you feel like 'Whew! I'm on the right track. Let's keep on going.'"
Reba McEntire hosted the event at the Universal Amphitheatre, which was broadcast live on CBS. For her charitable work, she received the inaugural Home Depot Humanitarian Award, voted for online by fans. Veteran Ronnie Milsap was honored with the ACM's Pioneer Award and a standing ovation from the audience.
Among the performances was Toby Keith's patriotic delivery of "Courtesy of the Red, White & Blue," as well as a run through "The 'F' Word" by kindred bad boys Hank Williams Jr. and Kid Rock. Williams also performed a tribute to the late Waylon Jennings.
Other performers included Willie Nelson and Lee Ann Womack, Brooks & Dunn with accompaniment from percussionist Sheila E., Trisha Yearwood, Alabama, Kenny Chesney, Sara Evans, Jackson, McBride, George Strait, Travis Tritt, and the teaming of Mark Chesnutt, Joe Diffie, and Tracy Lawrence.
Here is the full list of ACM Awards winners:
Entertainer of the year: Brooks & Dunn
Male vocalist of the year: Alan Jackson
Female vocalist of the year: Martina McBride
Duo of the year: Brooks & Dunn
Group of the year: Lonestar
New male vocalist of the year: Phil Vassar
New female vocalist of the year: Carolyn Dawn Johnson
New duo or group of the year: Trick Pony
Album of the year: "O Brother, Where Art Thou?", various artists
Single of the year: "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)," Alan Jackson
Song of the year: "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)," Alan Jackson
Vocal event of the year: "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow," Soggy Bottom Boys.
Video of the year: "Only in America," Brooks & Dunn.
Radio station of the year: KPLX, Dallas.
Disc jockey of the year: Stu Evans, KMLE.
Nightclub of the year: Bluebird Cafe, Nashville, Tenn.
Casino of the year: Boulder Station, Las Vegas.
Talent buyer/promoter of the year: Brian O'Connell, Clear Channel Entertainment.