Brad Paisley and Sugarland are the top nominees for the Academy of Country Music Awards, announced today (March 8) in Nashville. “American Idol” winner Carrie Underwood makes a strong showing with four nominations, and Bon Jovi nets its first ACM nod.
The awards will be presented live May 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, in a ceremony airing live on CBS-TV.
Paisley is nominated for six awards, including three he shares with Academy favorite Dolly Parton for their collaboration, “When I Get Where I’m Going.” The song appears on Paisley’s “Time Well Wasted Album.”
Sugarland earned five nominations, plus a sixth for singer Jennifer Nettles in the vocal event category for her hit duet with Bon Jovi, “Who Says You Can’t Go Home.” Brooks & Dunn also scored five nominations.
Rascal Flatts earned four nominations, and is the only act with nods in the top two categories—entertainer and album of the year—the latter for its “Feels Like Today” set. Joining Rascal Flatts in the entertainer category are Brooks & Dunn, last year’s winner Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith and Keith Urban.
Top male vocalist nominees are Dierks Bentley, Chesney, Paisley, George Strait and last year’s winner, Urban. The ACM’s top female vocalists are Sara Evans, Martina McBride, Underwood, Gretchen Wilson and Lee Ann Womack. Wilson won the award in 2005.
In addition to Lyric Street Records’ Rascal Flatts, nominees in the album of the year category are Womack’s “There’s More Where That Came From” (MCA Nashville), Paisley’s “Time Well Wasted” (Arista Nashville), Gary Allan’s “Tough All Over” (MCA Nashville) and Sugarland’s “Twice the Speed of Life” (Mercury).
Big & Rich, Parton and Womack earned three nominations each this year. Dual nominees are Allan, Chesney, Little Big Town, Keith, Miranda Lambert and Urban.
Nominees are selected by the Academy of Country Music’s voting members. Winners will be announced during the telecast. For a complete list of nominees, got to billboard.com/awards.