Ur­ban leads Academy of Coun­try Mu­sic nom­i­na­tions


Keith Ur­ban’s bound­ary­push­ing album “Rip­cord’’ has spawned sev­eral top coun­try sin­gles and led him to pick up seven nom­i­na­tions in­clud­ing en­ter­tainer of the year and album of the year at this year’s Academy of Coun­try Mu­sic Awards.

Lady An­te­bel­lum an­nounced the nom­i­na­tions Thurs­day on “CBS This Morn­ing’’ for the awards show, which will be held April in Las Ve­gas. Ur­ban is also nom­i­nated for male vo­cal­ist of the year, sin­gle record of the year and song of the year.

Six-time nom­i­nee Mi­randa Lam­bert could make his­tory again as she is nom­i­nated for fe­male vo­cal­ist of the year, which she has won a record seven years in a row. She is also nom­i­nated for album of the year for her dou­ble album, “The Weight of These Wings,’’ sin­gle record of the year, song of the year and video of the year.

Com­ing off her Grammy win for best coun­try solo per­for­mance, Maren Mor­ris tied Lam­bert with six nom­i­na­tions, in­clud­ing album of the year for “HERO.’’ She also is nom­i­nated as fe­male vo­cal­ist of the year, new fe­male vo­cal­ist of the year and sin­gle record of the year for her song, “My Church.’’

With strong pop, dance and R&B in­flu­ences, Ur­ban’s album has dom­i­nated coun­try ra­dio over the past year, with four sin­gles reach­ing the top six on Bill­board’s Hot Coun­try chart.

Ur­ban, who per­formed his new­est sin­gle “The Fighter’’ at the Gram­mys last Sun­day with Car­rie Un­der­wood, said the en­ter­tainer of the year nom­i­na­tion is an ac­knowl­edge­ment of great live per­for­mances.

“I have been a mu­si­cian since I was six and play­ing on stage since I was like 7,’’ Ur­ban told The As­so­ci­ated Press on Thurs­day. “I have al­ways loved per­form­ing on stage, be­ing an en­ter­tainer. So that cat­e­gory has al­ways been the high­est hon­our imag­in­able.’’

He added that great per­for­mances are all about be­ing “in the flow,’’ and men­tioned Adele’s per­for­mance at the Gram­mys when she restarted her trib­ute to Ge­orge Michael.

“She had this in­cred­i­ble courage to stop it in the mid­dle of a live show and say, ‘Let me get this thing right,’’’ Ur­ban said.’

Com­pet­ing with Ur­ban for en­ter­tainer of the year will be last year’s win­ner, Ja­son Aldean, along with Luke Bryan, Florida Ge­or­gia Line and Un­der­wood.


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