The Academy of Country Music (ACM), dick clark productions and GAC are teaming to allow fans to vote for the three newcomer categories for the Academy of Country Music Awards: top new female, top new male and top new vocal duo or group.

Fan voting for these three categories will begin at on Feb. 13 and will close on March 5. The winner in each of the three categories will be announced March 9, and will move on to compete in a brand new ACM Awards category, top new artist.

Voting for the top new artist category will begin on March 16, and will close on April 5, with the winner announced live during the 44th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards. That show will be broadcast from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on April 5 on CBS.

Last year the ACM allowed fans to vote for entertainer of the year, and in past years the organization has allowed fans to weigh in on the top video award.

As part of this new partnership, GAC will air several stand-alone specials, including a show featuring all the nominees from each of the three categories, as well as a special on the winner.

The first GAC special, hosted by reigning top new male vocalist Jack Ingram, will feature the nine nominees, three from each newcomer category, and will premiere on Feb. 20.

On March 10, GAC will tape a special hosted by Sara Evans, in which the winner in each category will be named and presented with an award. Each winning act will perform on the special.

Nominees for the ACM Awards will be announced on Feb. 11 in Nashville.