Kenny Chesney was the big winner at the Country Music Assn. (CMA) Awards, held tonight (Nov. 9) at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.
Chesney, who had never previously won a CMA award, scored both the entertainer of the year and album of the year trophy. The latter was for his “When the Sun Goes Down” (BNA) set.
Tim McGraw’s “Live Like You Were Dying” (Curb) was named both single and song of the year. The latter award went to songwriters Tim Nichols and Craig Wiseman.
Also scoring dual wins were Brad Paisley and Alison Krauss. Their duet, “Whiskey Lullaby,” won for both musical event and video of the year.
Among the evening’s other top winners were Martina McBride, who was named female vocalist of the year, vocal duo winner Brooks & Dunn, and surprise male vocalist of the year winner Keith Urban.
Rascal Flatts was named vocal group of the year and guitarist/producer Dann Huff took home musician of the year honors.
Gretchen Wilson was recognized as an emerging artist with the evening’s Horizon Award. The singer scored the best opening sales week by any country newcomer this year with her Epic debut, “Here for the Party.”