Miranda Lambert Jumps to No. 3 on List of All-Time CMA Awards Nominees: See Top 10

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First nod: 1983

Most recent nod: 2014

Number of awards: 17

Did you know?: Hard to imagine, but Strait didn’t win the horizon award, the former name for new artist of the year. He was nominated in 1983, but lost to John Anderson. In addition to being the overall nominations leader, Strait is also the leader in several individual categories, including male vocalist of the year (25 nods), entertainer of the year (19), album of the year (19) and single of the year (nine).

2. Alan Jackson, 81

First nod: 1990

Most recent nod: 2012

Number of awards: 16

Did you know?: Jackson didn’t win the horizon award either. He was nominated in 1990, but lost to Garth Brooks. (Pretty stiff competition.)

3. Miranda Lambert, 58 (not counting two with Pistol Annies)

First nod: 2005

Most recent nod: 2021

Number of awards: 14

Did you know?: Lambert didn’t win the horizon award either. She was nominated in both 2005 and 2006, but lost to Dierks Bentley and Carrie Underwood, respectively. Lambert has won female vocalist of the year seven times, more than anyone else. But she has yet to win entertainer of the year. She has amassed more overall nominations than anyone else who has yet to take home the big one. Maybe this will be her year.

3. Brad Paisley, 58

First nod: 2000

Most recent nod: 2012

Number of awards: 14

Did you know?: Paisley co-hosted the CMA telecast with Underwood 11 years in a row. He has amassed more nominations than anyone else who ever hosted or co-hosted the show.

5. Vince Gill, 54

First nod: 1990

Most recent nod: 2018

Number of awards: 18

Did you know?: Gill, who took a while to find his footing, was never even nominated for the horizon award. Gill hosted or co-hosted the CMA telecast 12 times, which puts him in a tie with Underwood as the most frequent host. Gill is tied with Strait and Blake Shelton for the most wins for male vocalist of the year – five.

6. Brooks & Dunn, 53 (not counting two individual nods for Brooks; four for Dunn)

First nod: 1992

Most recent nod: 2021

Number of awards: 18 (not counting an individual award for Dunn)

Did you know?: Brooks & Dunn didn’t win the horizon award either. They were nominated in 1992, but lost to Suzy Bogguss. They have more CMA nods than any other group or duo. They have been nominated for vocal duo of the year 22 times, more than anyone else.

7. Reba McEntire, 51

First nod: 1983

Most recent nod: 2020

Number of awards: 6

Did you know?: McEntire didn’t win the horizon award either. She was nominated alongside Strait in 1983, but both lost to Anderson. McEntire has amassed more nominations for female vocalist of the year (18) than anyone else. Yet she has won just six CMA awards, fewer than anyone else in this top 10 list. #shouldawonmore

8. Keith Urban, 50

First nod: 2001

Most recent nod: 2020

Number of awards: 12

Did you know?: Urban, who was born in New Zealand and reared in Australia, has amassed more nominations and awards than anyone else from outside the U.S. This year marked the first time since 2003 that he didn’t receive a single CMA nomination.

9. Kenny Chesney, 48

First nod: 1999

Most recent nod: 2021

Number of awards: 9

Did you know?: At the risk of sounding like a broken record, Chesney didn’t win the horizon award either. He was nominated in 1999, but lost to Jo Dee Messina. Chesney and Alabama are the only acts in CMA history to win entertainer of the year three years in a row. (Chesney has won in that category four times, second only to Brooks’ seven awards.) Chesney has yet to win for male vocalist of the year, despite nine nods in the category.

10. Willie Nelson, 47

First nod: 1976

Most recent nod: 2017

Number of awards: 10

Did you know?: Nelson, widely regarded as one of our greatest singers in any genre, has yet to win male vocalist of the year, despite seven nods in the category.

Next in line: Merle Haggard (46 nods), Dolly Parton (44), Alabama (41), Tony Brown (39), Dann Huff (39), Loretta Lynn (39), Tim McGraw (39), George Jones (38), Carrie Underwood (36), Garth Brooks (35), Eric Church (35)

Notes: Brown and Huff are tied as the most-nominated people in CMA history who aren’t primarily known as artists. Alabama is the most-nominated group of three or more people.


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