2021 Academy of Country Music Awards Winners

Early ACM Awards winners included Jimmie Allen, Kane Brown, Carly Pearce, Lee Brice and Gabby Barrett

The Academy of Country Music celebrated its 56th annual awards ceremony tonight (Sunday, April 18). Luke Bryan took home the evening's top honor, Entertainer of the Year. He could not be in attendance after recently testing positive for COVID-19.

"I'm so sorry I could not be there...all the winners tonight, congratulations," Bryan said via a video acceptance speech, and thanked his management, label and booking teams. "We've missed touring, we've missed being on the road with everybody that makes me an entertainer, my band, my road fans, we will be back."

Co-hosts Keith Urban and Mickey Guyton guided viewers through the evening, which saw Chris Stapleton, Maren Morris, Carly Pearce and Lee Brice among the evening's big winners.

Old Dominion took home the evening's first televised win, for Group of the Year.

Morris earned Song of the Year, for "The Bones," which she penned alongside Jimmy Robbins and Laura Veltz. Later in the evening, Morris took home the honor for Female Artist of the Year. Carly Pearce and Lee Brice's "I Hope You're Happy Now," which took home Music Event of the Year prior to the televised event, also earned Single of the Year.

Dan+Shay took home Duo of the Year; they accepted the honor at the Bluebird Cafe, where member Dan Smyers recounted performing at the intimate venue 10 years ago.

Thomas Rhett earned Male Artist of the Year, and he gave a nod to the other nominees in the category, who were seated in the pews of the Grand Ole Opry House. "These are my heroes sitting here in these seats," Rhett said.

Chris Stapleton's Starting Over was named Album of the Year. Stapleton gave thanks to his wife, as well as the songwriters and musicians he worked with in writing and recording the album.

Other earlier winners announced pre-telecast include Kane Brown (Video of the Year, for "Worldwide Beautiful"), Jimmie Allen (New Male Artist of the Year), and Gabby Barrett (New Female Artist of the Year).

See the winners updated live, below (winners in bold):

Entertainer of the Year

Luke Bryan

Eric Church

Luke Combs

Thomas Rhett

Chris Stapleton

Female artist of the year

Kelsea Ballerini

Miranda Lambert

Ashley McBryde

Maren Morris

Carly Pearce

Male artist of the year

Dierks Bentley

Luke Combs

Eric Church

Thomas Rhett

Chris Stapleton

Duo of the year

Brooks & Dunn

Brothers Osborne

Dan + Shay

Florida Georgia Line

Maddie & Tae

Group of the year

Lady A

Little Big Town

Old Dominion

The Cadillac Three

The Highwomen

New female artist of the year

Ingrid Andress

Tenille Arts

Gabby Barrett

Mickey Guyton

Caylee Hammack

New male artist of the year

Jimmie Allen

Travis Denning


Cody Johnson

Parker McCollum

Album of the year

Born Here Live Here Die Here – Luke Bryan

Producers: Jeff Stevens, Jody Stevens

Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

Mixtape Vol. 1 – Kane Brown

Producers: Andrew Goldstein, Charlie Handsome, Dann Huff, Lindsay Rimes

Record Label: RCA Nashville

Never Will – Ashley McBryde

Producer: Jay Joyce

Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

Skeletons – Brothers Osborne

Producer: Jay Joyce

Record Label: EMI Records Nashville

Starting Over – Chris Stapleton

Producers: Chris Stapleton, Dave Cobb

Record Label: Mercury Nashville

Single of the Year

"Bluebird" – Miranda Lambert

Producer: Jay Joyce

Record Label: Vanner Records/RCA Records Nashville

"I Hope" – Gabby Barrett

Producers: Ross Copperman, Zach Kale

Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

"I Hope You’re Happy Now" – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice

Producers: busbee

Record Label: Big Machine Records / Curb Records

"More Hearts Than Mine"– Ingrid Andress

Producers: Ingrid Andress, Sam Ellis

Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

"The Bones" – Maren Morris

Producer: Greg Kurstin

Record Label: Columbia Nashville

Song of the year

"Bluebird" – Miranda Lambert

Songwriter(s): Luke Dick, Miranda Lambert, Natalie Hemby

Publishers: Emileon Songs; Little Louder Songs; Pink Dog Publishing; Songs of Universal, INC; Sony ATV Tree Publishing; Wrucke for You Publishing

"One Night Standards" – Ashley McBryde

Songwriter(s): Ashley McBryde, Nicolette Hayford, Shane McAnally

Publishers: Canned Biscuit Songs; Smackworks Music; Smack Blue, LLC; Smackstreet Music; Tempo Investments; Warner Geo Met Ric Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp

"Some People Do" – Old Dominion

Songwriter(s): Jesse Frasure, Matt Ramsey, Thomas Rhett, Shane McAnally

Publishers: Carrot Seed Songs; EMI Blackwood Music INC; Smackville Music; Songs of ROC Nation; Telemitry Rhythm House Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp; Smack Hits; Tempo Investments; Warner Gro Met Ric Music

"Starting Over" – Chris Stapleton

Songwriter(s): Chris Stapleton, Mike Henderson

Publishers: I Wrote These Songs; Straight Six Music; WC Music Corp

"The Bones" – Maren Morris

Songwriter(s): Jimmy Robbins, Maren Morris, Laura Veltz

Publishers: Big Machine Music, LLC; Extraordinary Alien Publishing; International Dog Music; Oh Denise Publishing; Round Hill Songs; Warner-Tamerlane

Publishing Corp.

Video of the Year

"Better Than We Found It" – Maren Morris

Director: Gabrielle Woodland

Producers: Sarah Kunin, Jennifer Pepke

"Bluebird"– Miranda Lambert

Director: Trey Fanjoy

Producer: Heather Levenstone

"Gone" – Dierks Bentley

Directors: Wes Edwards, Ed Pryor, Travis Nicholson, Running Bear and Sam Siske, with animation by Skylar Wilson

Producer: David Garcia

"Hallelujah" – Carrie Underwood and John Legend

Director: Randee St. Nicholas

Producer: Greg Wells

"Worldwide Beautiful" – Kane Brown

Director: Alex Alvga

Producer: Christen Pinkston

Music Event of the Year

"Be A Light" – Thomas Rhett featuring Reba McEntire, Hillary Scott, Chris Tomlin, Keith Urban

Producer: Dann Huff

Record Label: The Valory Music Co.

"Does To Me" – Luke Combs feat. Eric Church

Producer: Scott Moffatt

Record Label: River House Artists/Columbia Nashville

"I Hope You’re Happy Now" – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice

Producer: busbee

Record Label: Big Machine Records / Curb Records

"Nobody But You" – Blake Shelton ft. Gwen Stefani

Producer: Scott Hendricks

Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

"One Beer" – HARDY ft. Lauren Alaina & Devin Dawson

Producers: Derek Wells, Joey Moi

Record Label: Big Loud Records

"One Too Many" – Keith Urban, P!nk

Producers: Cutfather, Dan McCarroll, Keith Urban, PhD

Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

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