ACM Awards Nominees 2021: Maren Morris, Chris Stapleton Top the List

Maren Morris Academy of Country Music Awards
Maren Morris performs at the 53RD ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS (Photo: Michele Crowe © 2018 CBS Broadcasting, Inc)

Maren Morris and Chris Stapleton lead the list of 2021 Academy of Country Music Awards nominees with six nominations each. Miranda Lambert is hot on their tails with five, and Ashley McBryde and Thomas Rhett each scored four nominations.

The Academy of Country Music notes the 2021 nominations mark the first time four Black artists – Jimmie Allen, Kane Brown, Mickey Guyton, and John Legend – are nominated in a single year. 2021’s also the first year every Single of the Year nomination features a female artist. And 14 of this year’s nominees are up for ACM Awards for the first time.

This year’s awards show is returning to three of Nashville’s iconic Country music venues: the Grand Ole Opry House, Ryman Auditorium, and the Bluebird Cafe. The 56th Academy of Country Music Awards will air live on CBS on Sunday, April 18th beginning at 8pm ET/PT (tape-delayed on the West Coast).

ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS NOMINEES:

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
Luke Bryan
Eric Church
Luke Combs
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Ashley McBryde
Maren Morris
Carly Pearce

MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Dierks Bentley
Luke Combs
Eric Church
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

DUO OF THE YEAR
Brooks & Dunn
Brothers Osborne
Dan + Shay
Florida Georgia Line
Maddie & Tae

GROUP OF THE YEAR
Lady A
Little Big Town
Old Dominion
The Cadillac Three
The Highwomen

NEW FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Ingrid Andress
Tenille Arts
Gabby Barrett
Mickey Guyton
Caylee Hammack

NEW MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Jimmie Allen
Travis Denning
Hardy
Cody Johnson
Parker Mccollum

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Born Here Live Here Die Here – Luke Bryan
Mixtape Vol. 1 – Kane Brown
Never Will – Ashley McBryde
Skeletons – Brothers Osborne
Starting Over – Chris Stapleton

SINGLE OF THE YEAR
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
I Hope – Gabby Barrett
I Hope You’re Happy Now – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice
More Hearts Than Mine – Ingrid Andress
The Bones – Maren Morris

SONG OF THE YEAR
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
One Night Standards – Ashley McBryde
Some People Do – Old Dominion
Starting Over – Chris Stapleton
The Bones – Maren Morris

VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Better Than We Found It – Maren Morris
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
Gone – Dierks Bentley
Hallelujah – Carrie Underwood and John Legend
Worldwide Beautiful – Kane Brown

SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR
Ashley Gorley
Michael Hardy
Hillary Lindsey
Shane McAnally
Josh Osborne

MUSIC EVENT OF THE YEAR
Be A Light – Thomas Rhett featuring Reba McEntire, Hillary Scott, Chris Tomlin, Keith Urban
Does To Me – Luke Combs featuring Eric Church
I Hope You’re Happy Now – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice
Nobody But You – Blake Shelton featuring Gwen Stefani
One Beer – HARDY featuring Lauren Alaina & Devin Dawson
One Too Many – Keith Urban, P!nk

BASS PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Jarrod Travis Cure
Mark Hill
Tony Lucido
Steve Mackey
Glenn Worf

DRUMMER OF THE YEAR
Fred Eltringham
Evan Hutchings
Derek Mixon
Jerry Roe
Aaron Sterling

GUITAR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
J.T. Corenflos
Kris Donegan
Jedd Hughes
Ilya Toshinskiy
Derek Wells

PIANO/KEYS PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Dave Cohen
David Dorn
Charlie Judge
Mike Rojas
Benmont Tench

SPECIALTY INSTRUMENT PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Alicia Enstrom
Jim Hoke
Danny Rader
Mickey Raphael
Ilya Toshinsky
Kristin Wilkinson

STEEL GUITAR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Spencer Cullum
Dan Dugmore
Mike Johnson
Russ Pahl
Justin Schipper

AUDIO ENGINEER OF THE YEAR
Jeff Balding
Jason Hall
Gena Johnson
Vance Powell
F. Reid Shippen

PRODUCER OF THE YEAR
Buddy Cannon
Dave Cobb
Dann Huff
Jay Joyce
Joey Moi