Entertainers’ Road to the Top: There’s a FIRST for everything!

With Round Two of voting complete and the nominees announced, Country Music fanatics have been buzzing all week in anticipation of “The 47th Annual CMA Awards,” airing LIVE on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 8|7c on ABC.

Considering this year’s pool of impressive artists, receiving a CMA Awards nomination is an unquestionable honor. Awarded to the artist “displaying the greatest competence in all aspects of the entertainment field,” Entertainer of the Year serves as the most prestigious title of them all.

We’ve heard your opinions. Everyone has their favorites, and these entertainers definitely gave us an incredible year. As Country Music enthusiasts, we are celebrating the diversity and unique talent among the 2013 nominees.

So where were these artists before they landed on the list of candidates for this “top honor” CMA Award? Well, there’s a first for everything, and we did a little digging to find out!

Check out some memorable “firsts” for your 2013 CMA Awards Entertainer of the Year Nominees:

Blake Shelton

  • awards10_prfrm_shelton_5121_17356First came to Nashville: 1993, 17 years old
  • First #1 Hit: “Austin” off his 2001 album, Blake Shelton
  • First Music Video: “Austin” (2001)
  • First CMA Awards Nomination: Horizon (Now New Artist of the Year), 2003
  • First CMA Awards Win: Male Vocalist of the Year & Musical Event for “Hillbilly Bone,” both in 2010

George Strait

  • awards10_prfrm_strait_1762_17363First came to Nashville: 1981, 28 years old
  • First #1 Hit: “Fool Hearted Memory” off his 1982 album, Strait from the Heart
  • First Music Video: “You Look So Good in Love” (1983)
  • First CMA Awards Nomination: Horizon (Now New Artist of the Year), 1983
  • First CMA Awards Win: Male Vocalist of the Year & Album of the Year for Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind, 1985

Jason Aldean

  • JasonAldean_awards11_win_aldean_5699First came to Nashville: 1998, 21 years old
  • First #1 Hit: “Why” off his 2005 album, Jason Aldean
  • First Music Video: “Hicktown” (2005)
  • First CMA Awards Nomination: Horizon (Now New Artist of the Year), 2007
  • First CMA Awards Win: Album of the Year for My Kinda Party & Musical Event of the Year for “Don’t You Wanna Stay” in 2011

Luke Bryan

  • _2JR6631First came to Nashville:  2001, 25 years old
  • First #1 Hit: “Rain is a Good Thing” off his 2009 album, Doin’ My Thing
  • First Music Video: “All My Friends Say” (2007)
  • First CMA Awards Nomination: New Artist of the Year, 2010

Taylor Swift

  • awards11_win_swift_6672First came to Nashville: 2003, 14 years old
  • First #1 Hit: “Our Song” off her 2006 album, Taylor Swift
  • First Music Video: “Tim McGraw” (2006)
  • First CMA Awards Nomination: Horizon (Now New Artist of the Year), 2007
  • First CMA Awards Win: Horizon (Now New Artist of the Year), 2007

Though the nominees bring a variety of styles and experience to the table, we can’t help but notice how they are also each uniquely connected!

Six Degrees of Entertainer

Reigning Entertainer of the Year, Blake Shelton, has been the winning coach on reality TV-hit “The Voice” for three seasons in a row. There is only one month’s age difference between Blake and co-nominee, Luke Bryan.  Luke was a Sigma Chi at Georgia Southern University, which he attended to be close to his family in Leesburg, Ga. Leesburg is only about an hour and a half away from Macon, Ga., where fellow nominee, Jason Aldean grew up. Jason learned guitar at a young age, chord by chord, during summer days with his father. Taylor Swift, picked up the same skill from a computer repairman who taught her the three chords that led to her first song, “Lucky You.” She did this just 12 years after she was born in 1989, the same year that “King of Country” George Strait picked up his first Entertainer of the Year title. This year, George became the most-nominated Country Music artist in CMA history, with a grand total of 82 nominations.

Who will walk away from “The 47th Annual CMA Awards” as Entertainer of the Year for 2013? Watch the results LIVE from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, TN on Wednesday, Nov. 6 at 8|7c on ABC!

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16 Responses to Entertainers’ Road to the Top: There’s a FIRST for everything!

  1. Elsie sullivan says:

    Sure are no surprises here!

  2. Simon says:

    And why you dont give Carrie Underwood her “FIRST” Entertainer of the Year nomination when she have the best year by far in country music!?? Is funny how she entertains your show every year as co-host but yet she is not nominated. Poor Carrie, is so unfair.

  3. kathy davis says:

    So Carrie Underwood Still got the shaft. Just like always whats up with that

  4. Patrick says:

    I don’t know how you determine your “Entertainers of the Year” so this list is rather puzzling. Is it strictly by accomplishment? Is it based on labels submitting artists? Certainly, it is not random. So I just don’t understand how these would be the list of nominees for your Entertainer of the Year. Taylor Swift had no success in country music at all in the last year. She left the genre almost entirely. Why would you honor that? And it can’t be based on success within the format if you keep intentionally leaving Carrie Underwood off your list. So it seems like a strange catagory. And a stranger list of people you would choose to promote.

  5. Pamela J. says:

    Bleah, same boring bunch. Where’s Carrie Underwood in that list???????

  6. Justin says:

    Why is Carrie Underwood on this screen? I thought the CMA’s didn’t give her awards?

  7. annie says:

    Keith Urban should have been nominated for Entertainer of the Year! I mean really-anyone who’s been to his concerts would know this.

  8. Tom says:

    Carrie deserves a Entertainer of the year nomination! What she have to do? be a judge in a reality like Blake? or sing pop songs like Taylor?

  9. Simon says:

    Carrie Underwood is the best!

  10. Donna says:

    Wow what a great set of nominees!
    Too bad the real EOTY of 2013 isn’t included.

  11. Nicole says:

    This list of nominees still makes me laugh every time.

  12. Margie says:

    Where’s Ms Carrie Underwood ?? she supposed to be in the list. With her massive successful tour and lots of achievements she got during the eligible period,
    she way more deserve than some of the nominees listed above. This is so weird and something wrong here.

  13. Tota says:

    Taylor is number 1

  14. adam233 says:

    This first for everything is quite boring.
    I’d prefer a post like this: 5 REASONS why HE/SHE is nominated as EOTY.
    CMA needs to convince others why they are nominated and why some others are not.
    (I don’t care if you MR./MS. MODERATOR is gonna publish/delete my comments, at least you’ve read and you know OUR FRUSTRATIONS over the nominees pick by CMA voters, which include politics which is too dirty compared to what we had in our industry years years ago.)

  15. adam233 says:

    i don’t care about the FIRST…
    I care about reasons why they are nominated.
    Prove to me the CMA voters are voting according to the criteria.
    I don’t care if MR or MS Moderator is going to publish or delete my comment,
    at least you have read it, and understand our frustrations over the dirty politics going on behind the voting process.
    So go ahead and delete if you want to…your dirty politics have spread everywhere…
    I’m from Malaysia and can’t believe COUNTRY genre is in such condition now, SHAME

  16. Tom says:

    I think Carrie Underwood should be included in this list.

    Has done many more ‘Entertainer’ tasks through the year for Country Music than at least 3 of the 5 nominees above.

    …I give the edge out of these nominees to either Blake (again) or Luke, but fear George will win because voters will want to celebrate his (long time coming) retirement.

    …also, I’ve been told many comments are being deleted. Why have a comment section if folks can’t comment?!

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