The first round of performers announced for the 2021 CMT Music Awards is heavy on duets, as the telecast will include numbers uniting Mickey Guyton with Gladys Knight, Maren Morris with JP Saxe and Brothers Osborne with Dierks Bentley.
Also unveiled Wednesday as landing performance slots on the June 9 show were country superstars Luke Combs and Chris Stapleton. An appearance by the Texas trio of Miranda Lambert, Jack Ingram and Jon Randall, who just released the trio project “The Marfa Tapes,” is also on the books.
Guyton and R&B-pop legend have not collaborated before. Morris was recently a featured artist on “Line by Line,” a single credited to Saxe, a multiple 2021 Grammy nominee. Brothers Osborne and Bentley are no strangers to one another; the country duo appeared as featured artists on Bentley’s “Burning Man” in 2018.
Combs is the currently hottest act on the bill so far, commercially speaking, even though he doesn’t have a new release. His blockbuster “What You See Is What You Get” is back in the top 10 on the all-genre Rolling Stone chart after 79 weeks.
The show airs live June 9 at 8 p.m. ET on CMT, MTV, MTV2, Logo, Paramount Network and TV Land. Kane Brown and Kelsea Ballerini were previously announced as hosts, with Brown co-hosting for a second consecutive year.
Morris and Lambert lead the nominations with four each. Picking up three nominations in a recent announcement were Brown and Ballerini, along with Guyton and Little Big Town.
Morgan Wallen, whose blockbuster album is No. 2 on the all-genre chart at the moment, was declared ineligible for the awards as nominations were announced recently. ““After removing Morgan Wallen from our platforms earlier this year, his videos were deemed ineligible for the 2021 CMT Music Awards,” CMT said in a statement.