George Strait’s 83 CMA Nominations

Entertainer of the Year Nominee Released Debut Album in 1981

What is it about the 80s with George Strait? The numbers, I mean?

Strait, who was nominated again Wednesday (Sept. 3) in the CMA Awards’ entertainer of the year category, now has 83 CMA nominations under his belt.

And here’s the fun twist on that news: This is the very same week, 33 years ago, that King George released his very first album, Strait Country.

The debut album from this new guy from Texas was recorded in Tennessee and released on Sept. 4, 1981. On vinyl.

Strait Country wasn’t exactly an overnight success. The first Strait single, “Unwound,” broke into the Top 10, but it wasn’t an automatic No. 1 like you might think.

Then again, Strait went on to win his first two CMA trophies when he took home male vocalist of the year and album of the year for Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind in 1985.

In this year’s entertainer of the year category, Strait is up against some pretty big stars — Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton and Keith Urban. But no one else has the 33-year history of making award-winning country music that Strait does.

The 48th annual CMA Awards, which will be hosted again by Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood, will air live Nov. 5 on ABC.

Alison makes her living loving country music. She's based in Chicago, but she's always leaving her heart in Nashville.