05:30 PM EDT 03/07/2014
Originally posted 04/08/2013 08:30AM
For Luke Bryan, who burst into tears when his name was announced, being named entertainer of the year at Sunday's 48th annual Academy of Country Music Awards wasn't just big. It was BIG.
"You know, your life flashes before you," Bryan, who also served as the Las Vegas event's co-host, with Blake Shelton, tells PEOPLE.
"Everything – the years to get there, the loading up amps in trucks, and even the move to Nashville and then driving back to Georgia and playing little bars and then the record deal and watching your fan base grow and watching people start to love what you do."
Originally posted 04/08/2013 12:10AM
She's still the one!
After a decade away from the Academy of Country Music Awards stage (or, "10 freakin' years," as pointed out by co-host Blake Shelton), Shania Twain returned to the Las Vegas awards show Sunday night.
And all we have to say is this: Exactly how long is a decade?
Originally posted 04/07/2013 11:40PM
On a night dedicated to country, even those of the non-cowboy hat persuasion received a down-home, sweeter-than-sweet tea welcome from Nashville's finest.
Both soul king Stevie Wonder and pop's resident heart-breaker John Mayer took the Academy of Country Music Awards stage Sunday night as Las Vegas enjoyed a taste of the South.
A recently single Mayer joined Brad Paisley to sing the country crooner's "Beat This Summer" in one of Mayer's first live performances since he battled two bouts of vocal cord problems.
Wonder later rocked the ACM stage with nominee Hunter Hayes for a jazzy mashup of their songs "I Want Crazy" and "Sir Duke."
Originally posted 04/07/2013 10:15PM
You might say Blake Shelton had plenty to sing about when he found himself in the presense of four naked ladies: Sheryl Crow, the Pistol Annies's Ashley Monroe, Angaleena Presley and, of course, wife Miranda Lambert.
In Sin City for Sunday's Academy of Country Music Awards, the show's co-host had quite the opportunity to indulge his, um, sinful side.
"The first night we got to Vegas, me and Sheryl Crow and Miranda and Angeleena went to Miranda and Blake's room and had a spray-tan party, so all of us were naked," Monroe, 26, told PEOPLE on the pre-ceremony red carpet. "We made Blake go upstairs and close his eyes."
Originally posted 04/07/2013 09:15PM
Some people kick up their heels. But when in Las Vegas for the Academy of Country Music Awards, it's far more appropriate to, well, kick up your boots.
As the cowboy hat-happiest of the music industry flocked west, singer Dustin Lynch was one of many showing off his shoe-of-choice at the weekend's Party for a Cause Festival, where he (along with country artists such as Florida Georgia Line, The Band Perry and Greg Bates) took the stage to raise awareness for a line-up of charities.
Prior to making his way to Sunday's ceremony (and striking a Nashville-worthy pose in PEOPLE's photo booth), the "She Cranks My Tractor" singer, 27, Tweeted, "Wow what a day at @ACMawards."
Originally posted 11/01/2013 06:00AM
From Mike Eli's adorable girl to Jewel's sweet baby boy, meet Nashville's newest stars
Originally posted 04/07/2013 10:00AM
None of country music's biggest stars doubt that Luke Bryan will do well as co-host, with Blake Shelton of this Sunday's Academy of Country Music Awards, but that doesn't mean they aren't concerned about him.
"I think Luke is nervous, and he should be," Miranda Lambert told PEOPLE Friday. "Not because he won't do great. It's because my husband [Blake] is a loose cannon and he never goes by prompter and I never know what he's going to say or do."
For Shelton, hosting country music's annual showcase is old hat, having done it twice before. But Bryan is a rookie.
Originally posted 04/06/2013 03:20PM
The Academy of Country Music Awards are going to be one heck of a show.
With Jana Kramer and her fiancé Brantley Gilbert both nominated for best new artist and Garth Brooks and George Strait performing together for the first time, country music fans are in for a treat.
But if you're not in Las Vegas, it doesn't mean you have to miss out on all the fun of ACM weekend. Before the show airs live Sunday from the MGM Grand (CBS, 8 p.m.) keep up with the country stars on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook! Here are a few of our favorite socially minded singers:
Originally posted 03/12/2013 03:00PM
Think you can keep up with Sunday night's seasoned co-host?
Originally posted 04/05/2013 11:45AM
John Mayer has found a new partner – on stage, that is.
The musician, who split from Katy Perry last month, will perform with Brad Paisley at the Academy of Country Music Awards this Sunday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, PEOPLE learns exclusively.
Fellow performers for country's big night include Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, Kelly Clarkson, Tim McGraw, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, Jason Aldean, Garth Brooks, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Hunter Hayes, Jewel, George Strait, Stevie Wonder, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Pistol Annies and The Band Perry.
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