FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Cole Swindell spent a lot of time on stage early on at the Academy of Country Music Awardsand perform the first night’s song and then quickly collect it.
Swindell and a team of songwriters won for “She Had Me at Heads Carolina,” the song he and Joe de Messina just performed on stage.
Swindell said he was honored with winning the songwriting category because it was one of the reasons he got into country music.
The show opened with a fitting performance by Keith Urban of his song “Texas Time.” ACMs are delivered at Ford’s Star Center in Frisco.
Host Garth Brooks kicked off the show with a discussion about the history of country music and who was the greatest of all time, or GOAT. After several male performers were included, he cast it to Dolly Parton, who transported a live goat on stage.
Ben Brooks’ easy banter at his first ever party, and Parton uploaded the first moments of the show. The pair are co-hosts, and Parton will wrap up the two-hour show that’s streaming on Amazon Prime with a performance of a song from their upcoming rock album.
Singer-songwriter Hardy entered Thursday’s program as a main nominee, for seven awards including two in the Song of the Year category. One of his nominated songs is “Wait in the Truck”, his duet with Lainey Wilson, which is the second most nominated.
He is also nominated as a songwriter for Morgan Wallen’s Sand in my Boots. The country star will not perform as planned due to a vocal cord injury that halted his tour.
The night could end with Artist of the Year Miranda Lambert extending her role as the most decorated female artist in the history of the ACMs. She’s the Female Artist of the Year alongside Carrie Underwood, Chris Stapleton, Jason Aldean, Kane Brown, Luke Combs, and Wallen.
Two of the nominees have already won: Hailey Waiters and Zac Bryan took home Best New Artist.
The performers will include some of the biggest names in the country, including Carly Pierce and Brandi Clark, along with a special performance by British pop star Ed Sheeran.
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