Brad Paisley, George Strait Lead Field of CMA Award Nominees

Kenny Chesney, Alison Krauss, Martina McBride Reel in Four Nominations Each

With five nominations each, Brad Paisley and George Strait will be the top contenders at the 41st annual CMA Awards show. Kenny Chesney, Alison Krauss and Martina McBride received four nominations each while John Rich, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban racked up three each for the Nov. 7 awards show.

The nominees were announced in New York and Nashville

Sara Evans and Sugarland revealed the final nominees in five of the 12 categories Thursday morning (Aug. 30) in New York during an appearance on Good Morning America. Taylor Swift and Montgomery Gentry were at Nashville’s Sommet Center to announce the other finalists during a live press conference that aired as a special edition of CMT Insider.

Paisley and Strait are both nominated for entertainer of the year, male vocalist and album of the year. In addition to his album nomination for 5th Gear, Paisley’s “Ticks” is nominated for single of the year and “Online” is up for video of the year. The video also provided a CMA nomination for Seinfeld actor Jason Alexander, Paisley’s friend who directed and appears in the production. Strait’s album nomination is for It Just Comes Natural, and he’s also nominated for single of the year (for “Wrapped) and musical event of the year for his collaboration with Jimmy Buffett and Alan Jackson on a live version of Hank Williams’ “Hey Good Lookin’.”

The 2007 CMA Awards show takes place at the Sommet Center and will be telecast live on ABC.

Here’s a complete list of this year’s CMA nominees:

Entertainer of the Year
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
Rascal Flatts
George Strait
Keith Urban

Female Vocalist
Alison Krauss
Miranda Lambert
Martina McBride
Reba McEntire
Carrie Underwood

Male Vocalist
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
George Strait
Josh Turner
Keith Urban

Vocal Group
Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas
Dixie Chicks
Emerson Drive
Little Big Town
Rascal Flatts

Vocal Duo
Big & Rich
Brooks & Dunn
Montgomery Gentry
Sugarland
The Wreckers

Horizon Award
Jason Aldean
Rodney Atkins
Little Big Town
Kellie Pickler
Taylor Swift

Album of the Year
(Award goes to artist and producer.)

5th Gear
Brad Paisley
Producers: Frank Rogers and Chris DuBois
Arista Nashville

It Just Comes Natural
George Strait
Producers: Tony Brown and George Strait
MCA Nashville

Long Trip Alone
Dierks Bentley
Producer: Brett Beavers
Capitol Records Nashville

Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing
Keith Urban
Producers: Dann Huff and Keith Urban
Capitol Records Nashville

These Days
Vince Gill
Producers: Vince Gill, John Hobbs and Justin Niebank
MCA Nashville

Single of the Year
(Award goes to artist and producer.)

“Anyway”
Artist: Martina McBride
Producer: Martina McBride
RCA Records

“Before He Cheats”
Artist: Carrie Underwood
Producer: Mark Bright
19 Recordings Limited/Arista Records

“Lost in This Moment”
Artist: Big & Rich
Producers: Big Kenny and John Rich
Warner Bros. Nashville

“Ticks”
Artist: Brad Paisley
Producers: Frank Rogers and Chris DuBois
Arista Nashville

“Wrapped”
Artist: George Strait
Producers: Tony Brown and George Strait
MCA Nashville

Song of the Year
(Award goes to songwriter and primary publisher.)

“Anyway”
Songwriters: Martina McBride, Brad Warren and Brett Warren
Publishers: Delemmava Music, Bucky and Clyde Music

“Before He Cheats”
Songwriters: Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins
Publishers: That Little House Music, Mighty Under Dog Music and Sony/ATV Cross Keys

“Give It Away”
Songwriters: Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson
Publishers: Sony, ATV Tree, Mr. Bubba Music, Slow Run Music and EMI Blackwood

“Lost in This Moment”
Songwriters: John Rich, Keith Anderson and Rodney Clawson
Publishers: Rich Texan Music, Warner-Tamerlane, Writer’s Extreme,
EMI April Music and Romeo Cowboy

“Stupid Boy”
Songwriters: Dave Berg, Deanna Bryant and Sarah Buxton
Publishers: Song Planet, That Little House Music, Cal IV Songs and BergBrain Music

Musical Event
“Because of You”
Artists: Reba McEntire With Kelly Clarkson
MCA Nashville

“Find Out Who Your Friends Are”
Artists: Tracy Lawrence Featuring Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney
Rocky Comfort Records, CO5

“Hey Good Lookin’” (Live)
Artists: Jimmy Buffett With George Strait and Alan Jackson
MCA Nashville

Artists: Alison Krauss and John Waite
“Missing You”
Rounder Records

“The Reason Why”
Artists: Vince Gill With Guest Vocalist Alison Krauss
MCA Nashville

Music Video of the Year
(Award goes to artist and director)

“Anyway”
Artist: Martina McBride
Directors: Robert Deaton and George J. Flanigen IV

“Before He Cheats”
Artist: Carrie Underwood
Director: Roman White

“Moments”
Artist: Emerson Drive
Director: Steven Goldmann

“Online”
Artist: Brad Paisley
Director: Jason Alexander

“You Save Me”
Artist: Kenny Chesney
Director: Shaun Silva

Musician
Eddie Bayers Jr. — Drums
Jerry Douglas — Dobro
Dann Huff — Guitar
Mac McAnally — Guitar
Randy Scruggs — Guitar

Calvin Gilbert has served as CMT.com’s managing editor since 2002. His background includes stints at the Nashville Banner, Radio & Records and Westwood One.