CMA Awards Nominations Guide

The top nominees for the 56th annual Country Music Association Awards highlight both rising stars and veterans, including the most nominated female in CMA Awards history and a newcomer who captivated fans and voters with her first No. 1 hit.

Lainey Wilson is the top nominee across all categories with six nods, while Ashley McBryde, Carly Pearce, Chris Stapleton and Shane McAnally follow closely behind with five nominations. Solo acts dominate the contenders, with Midland the only group to receive more than two nods.

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Following are 2022’s leading nominees for the ceremony, hosted by Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning, that will air Nov. 9 on ABC at 8 p.m. ET.

LAINEY WILSON

Sayin’ What I’m Thinkin’

Six nominations, including album, song and female vocalist of the year

Not only is Lainey Wilson the only artist to earn six nominations this year, including album and new artist, she becomes only the fourth artist in CMA history to receive at least six nods in their first year on the ballot. She follows Glen Campbell (1968), Brad Paisley (2000) and Kacey Musgraves (2013). Sayin’ What I’m Thinkin’ includes song of the year nominee “Things a Man Oughta Know,” Wilson’s first Billboard Country Airplay chart-topper and song of the year winner at the 2022 ACM Awards in March. She followed up with a feature on Cole Swindell’s “Never Say Never,” which reached the top spot as well, and for which she is also nominated for musical event and music video of the year.

ASHLEY McBRYDE

“Never Wanted To Be That Girl”

Five nominations, including song, single and female vocalist of the year

Ashley McBryde’s duet with Carly Pearce on infidelity ballad “Never Wanted To Be That Girl” earns the former four of her five nominations, including song, single, music event and music video. McBryde also garners her third consecutive female vocalist of the year nomination. Overall, McBryde, who co-wrote “Girl” with Pearce and Shane McAnally, has received 12 career nominations and won new artist of the year in 2019.

CARLY PEARCE

“Never Wanted To Be That Girl”

Five nominations, including song, single and female vocalist of the year

Carly Pearce, the CMA’s reigning female vocalist, shares the same five nominations with Ashley McBryde, most of which come from the tremendous success of “Never Wanted To Be That Girl,” which appeared on Pearce’s album, 29: Written in Stone. “Girl,” which reached No. 1 on Country Airplay in May, is the second all-female collaboration to be nominated for single of the year, following Reba McEntire and Linda Davis’ “Does He Love You” in 1994. Like McBryde, she is also nominated for music event and music video of the year.

CHRIS STAPLETON

“You Should Probably Leave”

Five nominations, including entertainer, single and song of the year

Chris Stapleton has amassed 19 CMA Award wins since 2015, but a victory in this coveted category would be his first after five nominations. He last won single and song of the year in 2021 for “Starting Over.” “You Should Probably Leave,” which Stapleton co-wrote with Ashley Gorley and Chris DuBois, reached No. 1 on Country Airplay and snagged a Grammy earlier this year for best country solo performance. Stapleton is also up for male vocalist and music video of the year for his feature on Taylor Swift’s “I Bet You Think About Me” (Taylor’s Version).”

SHANE McANALLY

“Never Wanted To Be That Girl”

Five nominations, including album, single and song of the year

With “Never Wanted To Be That Girl,” producer-songwriter Shane McAnally receives his 10thsong of the year nomination. That ties him with Alan Jackson for most CMA Awards song of the year nods. Jackson earned his nominations between 1990 and 2008, while McAnally’s noms span 2013 to 2022, and include a win in 2014 for co-writing Kacey Musgraves’ “Follow Your Arrow.” In addition to his three nominations for “Girl,” McAnally received one for album of the year for co-producing Old Dominion’s Time, Tequila & Therapy and musical event of the year for co-producing “Longneck Way To Go” by Midland featuring Jon Pardi.

JOSH OSBORNE

“Sand in My Boots” 

Four nominations, including single and song of the year

Songwriter-producer Josh Osborne earns his fifth nomination in the category for his work on Morgan Wallen’s “Sand in My Boots.” Osborne has previously been tipped in this category for “Body Like a Back Road” and “Merry Go Round,” among others. He also picks up his first two nods for musical event of the year for his production work on Midland’s “Longneck Way To Go” and the Carly Pearce/Ashley McBryde collaboration “Never Wanted To Be That Girl.” The latter track also earns Osborne his second single of the year nomination as co-producer.

CODY JOHNSON

“‘Til You Can’t”

Four nominations, including male and single of the year

Texan Cody Johnson spun a song with a profound message into a two-week Country Airplay chart leader with “ ’Til You Can’t.” The song earns him his first CMA nominations in the male vocalist, single and music video of the year categories. The nominated video for “ ’Til You Can’t” was directed by Dustin Haney. Johnson also earns his second nomination for new artist of the year. (He was previously nominated in the category in 2019.)

LUKE COMBS

Growin’ Up

Three nominations, including entertainer, album and male vocalist of the year

Luke Combs, the reigning entertainer of the year, will compete for his second album of the year win after What You See Is What You Get triumphed in 2020. Combs has also won male vocalist twice before, in 2019 and 2020. Growin’ Up, which Combs released in June, debuted at No. 1 on Top Country Albums and includes “Doin’ This,” which hit No. 1 on Country Airplay and “The Kind of Love We Make,” which topped Country Songs.

MIDLAND

“Longneck Way To Go,” with Jon Pardi

Three nominations, including vocal group of the year

Despite 10 career nominations, Midland — the Dripping Springs, Texas, trio known for its throwback, mid-’80s country sound — has yet to win a CMA Award. This year, it earns its fifth consecutive nomination for vocal group of the year, following the release of its album The Last Resort: Greetings From. After teaming up with fellow country neo-traditionalist Jon Pardi on the stomping barroom-ready track “Longneck Way To Go,” the collaboration earned Midland its first nominations in two categories, music video and musical event of the year.

HARDY

“Beers On Me,” with Dierks Bentley and BRELAND

Three nominations, including song of the year

HARDY has proven his mettle as one of Nashville’s most reliable hit-crafters, co-writing songs including Blake Shelton’s “God’s Country,” Morgan Wallen’s “More Than My Hometown” and his own Country Airplay No. 1,“One Beer,” featuring Lauren Alaina and Devin Dawson. This year, he earns his second song of the year nomination for his work on Wallen’s No. 1 Country Airplay hit “Sand in My Boots,” co-written with Osborne and Ashley Gorley. Swiftly garnering acclaim as both an artist and a writer, HARDY also earns his second new artist of the year nomination and his first for musical event of the year for his work with Dierks Bentley and BRELAND on the Country Airplay chart leader “Beers On Me.”

MIRANDA LAMBERT

Palomino

Three nominations, including entertainer, album and female vocalist of the year

With a staggering 61 total career CMA nominations to her credit, Miranda Lambert remains the most nominated female artist in CMA Awards history. She is now the third-most nominated artist overall, bested only by George Strait (with 83 career nods) and Alan Jackson (81 career nods). She has a sixth shot at winning the coveted entertainer of the year prize and lengthens her tally of the longest streak of nominations for female vocalist, having appeared 16 times among the finalists since 2007. (She has won seven times.) She also earns her sixth nomination for album of the year (for Palomino), an honor she previously won in 2010 and 2014.

CARRIE UNDERWOOD

“If I Didn’t Love You”

Three nominations, including entertainer  and female vocalist of the year

After a year that has included the release of her album Denim & Rhinestones, the launch of her Las Vegas residency Reflection at Resorts World Las Vegas in December 2021 and her high-flying performance at this year’s CMT Music Awards, entertainment polymath Carrie Underwood picks up her fifth nomination in the coveted entertainer of the year category. She is also primed to add a sixth CMA female vocalist of the year trophy to her mantel (with 16 career nods in the category) and earns her fourth career nom for musical event of the year, this time for her collaboration with Jason Aldean, “If I Didn’t Love You.”

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