ACM hands out awards
The 2018 Academy of Country Music Awards marked a memorable night for the victims of the massive Las Vegas shooting, comeback queen Carrie Underwood and triple winners Chris Stapleton and Miranda Lambert.
Jason Aldean paid tribute to the 58 people who died at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas last October when he was named entertainer of the year Sunday for the third consecutive time.
“It’s been a rough year,” Aldean said, thanking those “that showed us love and support over the last six months.”
The ACMs brought the country music community back to Vegas six months after the deadly tragedy. Aldean was performing onstage when the shooting occurred.
“You guys are in our hearts always,” Aldean said. “We love Las Vegas. Vegas strong.”
Though Aldean beat out Stapleton for the top honour, Stapleton’s Sunday was met with many high points: His wife, Morgane, gave birth to twin boys; he celebrated his 40th birthday; and the leading nominee, who didn’t attend the show, won male vocalist of the year and album of the year, where he won twice as a singer and producer.
Underwood also had a big night, returning to the stage like an A-List veteran in her first television appearance since injuring her face and wrist last year due to a fall at her home. Her powerhouse vocals shined when she performed her new song, “Cry Pretty,” earning a rousing — and long — standing ovation from the audience.
Immediately following the performance, she won vocal event of the year for the dance-infused country song, “The Fighter,” with Keith Urban.
“I am still kind of shaking right now,” she added, appearing teary-eyed.
“Seeing her stand up there and be so beautiful, she’s one of the greatest singers of all-time in any genre of music,” Lambert said backstage of Underwood. “I am just proud of her and I know how strong she is and how hard she’s worked.”