Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, Chris Stapleton and Carrie Underwood have been named CMT’s 2016 Artists of the Year and will be honored at a ceremony in Nashville on October 20. Shania Twain and Kelsea Ballerini will also receive honors, Twain for the Lifetime Award and Ballerini for the Breakout Artist of the year award. To commemorate the upcoming musical event, we created a gallery for our honorees! Check out our latest gif gallery here!
CMT announced its honorees in mid-September; Rhett and Stapleton are first-time recipients of CMT’s Artist of the Year award, though Stapleton received the Breakout Award in 2015. Bryan, however, has been awarded Artist of the Year five consecutive years (2012-2016), Florida Georgia Line have received the award four times (2013-2016) and Underwood has earned it three times (2010, 2012, 2016).
Along with appearances by the honorees, the award show will also feature star studded performances by some of the industries hottest artists. Little Big Town‘s Karen Fairchild, Meghan Trainor, Jill Scott and pop star Zara Larsson will pay tribute to the honorees with one-of-a-kind performances. Trainor, Scott and Ballerini will pay tribute to Artist of a Lifetime Award winner Shania while Larsson will join Rhett for a mash-up of “Die A Happy Man” and Larsson’s “Never Forget You.” Fairchild will also team up with Bryan for a performance of their No.1 hit “Home Alone Tonight.”
In addition to the five Artist of the Year honorees, CMT will also recognize Ballerini with the Breakout Artist of the Year award. The rising hitmaker recently made history with her third single, “Peter Pan,” making her the first female artist in country music history to hit No. 1 with her first three consecutive singles from a debut album, as well as the first solo female artist in history to top both the Country Airplay and Hot Country Singles chart simultaneously.
The 2016 CMT Artists of the Year special premieres from Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center on October 20 at 8pm ET/PT. For even more of this years honorees, take a look at our newest gallery here!