(CMT Offstage keeps a 24/7 watch on everything that’s happening with country music artists behind the scenes and out of the spotlight.)
Eric Church is, so far, the big winner. He received five CMA nominations this week, but what he doesn’t have is a cell phone. He lost his while he was swimming on vacation last week. So when he got back to Nashville Wednesday (Sept. 5), his team brought him into his manager’s office and projected the press release from the CMA on an oversized screen. Church’s reaction? Silence. He said he was truly speechless. “I’m still a little bit in shock,” he said in a press release. “I think it’s a testament to the fans that believed in the music … loved the music … and told people about the music, because otherwise we don’t really have the track record to be the most-nominated at this point in our career.” Church’s nominations include male vocalist of the year, album of the year, single of the year, song of the year and music video of the year. I don’t think he’ll win any awards for cell phone safekeeping, though.