George Strait won his second entertainer of the year – 25 years after he won his first – and Miranda Lambert and Keith Urban teamed up to earn top honors Sunday night at a jam-packed Academy of Country Music Awards that had a little something for everyone.
Strait’s victory was not unexpected. He’s a few months from retiring from the road and won the same trophy at the rival Country Music Association Awards five months ago. But the ACMs entertainer award is fan-voted, and some wondered if Strait’s older fan base might vote.
I’ve always said I have the best fans in the world, Strait told the crowd. I heard this was a fan-voted thing, so I rest my case.
No one will begrudge Strait the win, including co-hosts Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan, who were also nominated in the category with Lambert and Taylor Swift.
Our hero, Shelton said in a genuine moment. Our hero won tonight!
Lambert won her fifth straight female vocalist of the year award and the two teamed up to win vocal event of the year for We Were Us.
Lambert also won single record of the year for Mama’s Broken Heart. The three wins gave Lambert 18 trophies at the ACM Awards since she first won best new female artist in 2006.
Urban also won producer and performance trophies for We Were Us. Music video of the year went to Urban, Tim McGraw and Taylor Swift for Highway Don’t Care.
Other winners included Kacey Musgraves, album of the year for Same Trailer Different Park; Jason Aldean, male vocalist; The Band Perry, vocal group; Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington and Jimmy Yeary, song of the year for I Drive Your Truck; Justin Moore, new artist; and Florida Georgia Line, vocal duo.
Sunday’s ceremony was at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.