And the Award Goes To …

Did y’all see the ACM (Academy of Country Music) Awards show Sunday night? I know at least one of my regular readers likes country music (in Wisconsin, that hotbed of twang), so I’ll assume the rest did not. Let me just say you missed a great show and three hours of evidence that the genre is hot and growing.

The two big country music awards shows are the ACMs (usually in the spring) and the CMAs (usually in the fall). Purists seem to look at the CMAs (Country Music Association) as the ‘big one’ but I’m starting to change my mind about that. The CMAs are so full of long, drawn out acceptance speeches in which the winners thank everybody they ever knew in their whole lives. Oh, and there is a little music too. The ACM awards show Sunday was mostly about entertainment and music. In fact no award was given out till a full hour into the show.

I’ve said before that country music is hot right now (all genres run in cycles) and one indicator Sunday night was the variety of artists from other genres who made guest appearances. Among them were Steven Tyler from Aerosmith singing with Carrie Underwood, James Taylor in a duet with Zac Brown and Rhiana performing a duet with Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles.

Another indicator is the number of pop hits by artists who are first and foremost country, including Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift and Lady Antebellum.

The show this week showcased many hot newcomers likeThe Band Perry, Eric Church and Jason Aldean as well as a few established stars like Reba McEntire (who also co-hosted), Ronnie Dunn of the now defunct Brooks & Dunn and Alabama, who played along with Brad Paisley during his new song that relates to Alabama’s hits.

By the way, country music is not always about hot girls and pickup trucks, but, well, some of it is. Here’s one. Enjoy.