LAS VEGAS (AP) — Kacey Musgraves made history when she won the 2019 Grammy for album of the year and swept the country music categories, but there’s one award she won’t win: entertainer of the year at the Academy of Country Music Awards.
That’s because no women are nominated for the show’s top award Sunday. Instead, men make up the nominees exclusively for a second straight year – Chris Stapleton, Keith Urban, Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean, who has held the title since 2015, will compete for the prize.
Reba McEntire, who is hosting the show at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, said it is disappointing that a female act isn’t in contention for the coveted ACM award.
“Carrie Underwood toured a lot this year. Kacey Musgraves is doing a wonderful job, not only in the United States (and) North America, but she’s very popular in Japan, so she’s working hard touring and getting country music around the world,” McEntire said in an interview with The Associated Press. “It might be too early for Kacey, but she’s working hard. A lot of the girls are, so I think they’re being overlooked right now.”
Musgraves’ critically acclaimed “Golden Hour” won album of the year and best country album at the Grammys in February. She also won best country song for “Space Cowboy” and best country solo performance for “Butterflies.”
Musgraves is the sole female artist in the album of the year category at the ACM Awards. Her competition includes Stapleton’s “From A Room: Volume 2,” Eric Church’s “Desperate Man,” Dierks Bentley’s “The Mountain” and Dan + Shay’s self-titled release.
Bebe Rexha is the only woman competing for song of the year thanks to the record-setting hit “Meant to Be,” featuring Florida Georgia Line, while Maddie & Tae is the sole female act up for duo of the year. No women were nominated for songwriter of the year.
Luckily the performers at ACM Awards, airing live at 8 p.m. Eastern on CBS, include a good number of female musicians. Underwood, Brandi Carlile, Maren Morris, Kelly Clarkson, Miranda Lambert, Ashley McBryde and McEntire will sing onstage. “This Is Us” actress Chrissy Metz, who stars in the new movie “Breakthrough,” will perform a song alongside Lauren Alaina, Mickey Guyton, Maddie & Tae and Underwood.
Others set to perform Sunday include Blake Shelton, George Strait, Brooks & Dunn, Kane Brown, Luke Combs, Florida Georgia Line, Khalid, Little Big Town and Thomas Rhett.
AP Entertainment Producer Alicia Rancilio contributed to this report.