Luke Bryan: Backstage Before the CMA Awards

On Carving Out His Own Little Lane

When Luke Bryan was backstage during rehearsals for Wednesday’s (Nov. 14) 52nd annual CMA Awards, he took some time to share what the awards have meant to him in the past. And how the awards still pave the way for his future.

“Winning entertainer of the year twice in a decade is pretty amazing,” Bryan said in a video interview. “I mean, I don’t know how I did it. I just went out there and did my thing. That’s what you have to do in this business. You have to be yourself, be true to what you are, and just go out there and carve out your own little lane and have fun with it.”

When he looks back on those big wins in 2014 and 2015, he says, it doesn’t feel like it was that long ago. And this year, he’s nominated in that same category.

“Those were special years,” he said. But then again, he admits that he always tries to act like he is the entertainer of the year. “Every year we saddle up, we go out there to try to act like the entertainer of the year and put our best shows on.”

Bryan added that every year is a learning experience, whether he’s learning something from his gig on American Idol or finding out he has very loyal fans all over the world. “You just try to rest when you can,” he said. “It still takes tons of concentration. You can’t just fly by the seat of your pants.

“You gotta keep staying committed to it.”

Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley host the 52nd annual CMA Awards live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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