×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

CMT Artists of the Year Show Goes All-Female, Spotlighting Carrie, Miranda and Maren

Take that, bros.

Last year, CMT took some flack for having an all-male lineup for the network’s annual Artists of the Year honors. This year, there’s some serious course correction going on. The honorees set for the 2018 telecast Oct. 17 are exclusively women, including Carrie Underwood, Miranda Lambert, Maren Morris and Kelsea Ballerini. Even the mixed-gender bands being celebrated are being awarded only for their female co-frontpeople — Hillary Scott from Lady Antebellum, and Karen Fairchild and Kimberly Schlapman from Little Big Town.

Take that, bros.

CMT’s move comes amid an ongoing controversy over the lack of women on country radio that is threatening to stretch from years into decades, with recent statistics showing the drought is only getting worse. The Artists of the Year lineup is hardly CMT’s first attempt to address the imbalance; the network has had a Next Women of Country initiative to promote rising female artists on the air and on themed tours.

The honorees from last year’s show that will not be returning — and who may want to start preparing their gender-bias legal briefs now — include Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Keith Urban, Jason Aldean and Chris Stapleton.

“In this monumental year for women, dedicating one of the biggest nights in the genre to applaud female country artists not only solidifies our commitment, but we hope will spark a much-needed change in the industry,” said CMT senior VP Leslie Fram in a statement. Fram is the leading force behind Next Women of Country and, outside of her CMT duties, is outspoken as a co-founder of Change the Conversation, a Music City org devoted to training a spotlight on sexism in the country music industry.

All of the women getting accolades from CMT this year are returnees, with the exception of Morris, who’s risen to country’s top ranks on the strength of one superior album. Underwood and Ballerini were last on the show in 2016, Little Big Town were honored (as a group) in 2015, Lambert appeared on the telecast in 2014, and Lady Antebellum’s lady is returning for the first time since 2011.

The show will air live from Nashville Oct. 17 at 8 p.m. ET, tape-delayed for the west coast for the same time slot. Additional performers have yet to be announced. Last year’s show, retuned at the last minute to pay tribute to the Las Vegas festival shooting victims, scored record high ratings for the eight-year-old franchise.

More Music

  • Spice Girls Open Reunion Tour in

    Spice Girls Open European Reunion Tour With Inclusivity Proclamations, Sound Issues

    Posh Spice chose not to be included, but there was a lot of other inclusivity to go around as the four other Spice Girls opened their reunion tour in Dublin Friday night. “We welcome all ages, all races, all gender identifies, all countries of origin, all sexual orientations, all religions and beliefs, all abilities,” they [...]

  • Moby attends the LA premiere of

    Moby Apologizes to Natalie Portman Over Book Controversy

    Moby has issued an apology of sorts after writing in his recently published memoir “Then It Fell Apart” that he dated Natalie Portman when she was 20 — a claim the actress refuted. “As some time has passed I’ve realized that many of the criticisms leveled at me regarding my inclusion of Natalie in Then [...]

  • Billie Eilish

    Billie Eilish Fans to Receive Perks Due to Chicago Venue Change

    Billie Eilish and her music agents at Paradigm are experiencing what most would call a first class problem. The demand to see the 17-year-old singer live has prompted a change of venue for her June 9 show in Chicago — from the 5,000-capacity Aragon Ballroom to the 20,000-plus-seat United Center arena. The last-minute venue change [...]

  • Moby Natalie Portman

    Moby Accuses Natalie Portman of Lying as the Two Spar Over Dating Claims

    In what’s become a he said/she said spat in multiple mediums, Moby, the elder statesman of electronic music, is now accusing actress Natalie Portman of lying and pleading to those on social media for his safety as “physical threats from complete strangers” emerge. To recap: this month, Moby released a new book, “Then It All [...]

  • Ellen DeGeneres Buys Adam Levine’s Beverly

    Adam Levine Cashes in on Sale of Max Mutchnick’s Former Mansion to Ellen DeGeneres

    Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo have sold a baronial Beverly Hills mansion with an illustrious chain of ownership for a reported $45 million to Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi. The mainstream radio rock star, who, it was announced Friday, will not to return as a coach on “The Voice,” and the Namibian-born Victoria’s Secret [...]

  • Kanye West Shares a Memory of

    Kanye West Shares a Touching Memory of His Mother in Letterman Interview

    In a preview of David Letterman’s interview with Kanye West, which begins streaming next Friday, May 31, the musician’s wife Kim Kardashian West, tweeted a clip of him sharing a touching memory of his mother, Donda, who died in 2007 after a surgical procedure. While his wife looks on smiling, West answers Letterman’s question about [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content