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Toby Keith Leads Pack in Country Music Nominations
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Reuters) – Toby Keith, with a chart-topping album and hit single “Beer for My Horses,” led the list of nominations for this year’s Country Music Association awards announced Tuesday.
Country pop and rock acts were also in the running along with traditional country artists, including veteran performersJohnny Cash, Willie Nelson and Dolly Parton.
The awards will be presented at the 37th annual CMA Awards show Nov. 5 at the Grand Ole Opry.
Keith snared seven nominations. His album “Unleashed” opened at No. 1 on both Billboard Country and Top 200 album charts and has been certified triple platinum.
This year’s nominations are a mix that reflect Nashville’s trend away from its main identity as a country music mecca. While several old-timers earned nominations this year, including Cash, Parton and Nelson, none from that group made it into the top “Entertainer of the Year” category.
The nominees:
Entertainer of the Year: Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith and Tim McGraw.
Female Vocalist of the Year: Terri Clark, Alison Krauss, Patty Loveless, Martina McBride and Dolly Parton.
Male Vocalist of the Year: Kenny Chesney, Alan Jackson, Toby Keith, Tim McGraw, Brad Paisley and George Strait.
Horizon Award (promising new entertainer): Gary Allan, Buddy Jewell, Joe Nichols, Blake Shelton and Darryl Worley.
Vocal Group of the Year: Alabama, Diamond Rio, DixieChicks, Lonestar and Rascal Flatts.
Vocal Duo of the Year: Bellamy Brothers, Brooks & Dunn, Montgomery Gentry, Sons of the Desert and the Warren Brothers.
Single of the Year: “Beer For My Horses,” a Toby Keith duet with Willie Nelson; “Celebrity” by Brad Paisley; “Have You Forgotten” by Darryl Worley; “Hurt” by Johnny Cash; “Three Wooden Crosses” by Randy Travis.
Musician of the Year: Jerry Douglas, Paul Franklin, Aubrie Haynie, Brent Mason and Randy Scruggs.
Album of the Year: “American IV: The Man Comes Around” by Johnny Cash; “Home” by the Dixie Chicks; Man With a Memory” by Joe Nichols; “Tim McGraw & the Dancehall Doctors” by Tim McGraw; “Unleashed” by Toby Keith.
Music Video of the Year: “Beer For My Horses” with Toby Keith and Willie Nelson; “Celebrity” with Brad Paisley; “Concrete Angel” with Martina McBride; “Hurt” with Johnny Cash; “Red Dirt Road” with Brooks & Dunn.
Vocal Event: Toby Keith with Willie Nelson singing “Beer For My Horses;” Alan Jackson and Jimmy Buffett in “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere;” Kid Rock featuring Sheryl Crow in “Picture;” Nitty Gritty Dirt Band featuring Johnny Cash in “Tears in the Holston River;” Tracy Byrd with Andy Griggs, Montgomery Gentry and Blake Shelton in “The Truth About Men.”

Song of the Year: “Beer For My Horses,” “Celebrity,” “Have You Forgotten?,” “Red Dirt Road” and “Three Wooden Crosses.”