10 Reasons We’re Excited for CMT Artists of the Year

Expressed In Gifs, Of Course

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, y’all. And no, we don’t mean the holiday season. It’s finally the day of CMT Artists of the Year!

To pass the time until 8 p.m. ET/PT., we’re counting the reasons (in no particular order) why we’re excited for tonight’s show.

  1. Chris’ Pipes

    Chris Stapleton is receiving the first-ever CMT Artits of the Year Breakout Award, but we’re even more excited to hear his flawless vocals during his performance.

  2. The Beautiful Leona Lewis

    We’ve got a “Girl Crush”, and it’s on Leona Lewis. We are so excited to see her perform the Little Big Town hit.

  3. Adam Lambert’s Voice

    What’s the only thing better than Leona Lewis singing “Girl Crush”? Leona Lewis singing with Adam Lambert, of course. We are 100% confident this will be the duet everyone is still obsessing over by next year’s event.

  4. The Ultimate #SquadGoals

    Who hasn’t wished they were part of the amazing Little Big Town? Answer: No one. We’re so ready to see all of their success be celebrated tonight, they really deserve it.

  5. Luke Bryan’s Everything

    His voice. His smile. His beautiful family. His dance moves. We can’t wait for all of it, and we bet you can’t either.

  6. FGL’s Swag

    We’re not sure what these two have up their sleeves for us tonight, but we know it will be awesome. Florida Georgia Line never disappoint.

  7. Blake Blake Blake

    Blake Shelton has had plenty of ups and downs this year, and we’re so excited to be a part of one of the major ups by honoring him tonight.

  8. Sam Hunt’s Outfit

    It doesn’t matter where or when, Sam Hunt always slays the outfit game.

  9. The Voice Reunion

    Cassadee Pope and RaeLynn, both former stars of Team Blake from NBC’s The Voice, are singing with the incredible Darius Rucker to toast Blake Shelton. That will be nothing short of epic.

  10. The Artist of a Lifetime

    The legendary Kenny Rogers is receiving the Artist of a Lifetime Award, and we can’t think of anyone more deserving.



Need even more reasons to get pumped for tonight? Keep an eye out for the cast of ABC’s Nashville and toasts from Dolly Parton, Dan Rather, Trace Adkins, Kellie Pickler, Lady Antebellum‘s Hillary Scott.

And you never know who will make a surprise appearance. We can neither confirm nor deny that there will be some awesome surprise guests tonight, but since we’re all friends here, we’re going to go ahead and promise that you won’t be disappointed.

Tune in tonight at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CMT, and join the conversation on the official CMT Artists of the Year Facebook page and on Twitter using the official hashtag, #CMTAOTY.

Writer and social-ite for CMT, lover of all things Nashville, and firm believer that Ross and Rachel were not on a break.