This is going to be one tough race! Brantley Gilbert, Hunter Hayes, JT Hodges, Scotty McCreery, Justin Moore, David Nail, Jerrod Niemann and Thompson Square are the semi-finalists for the 2012 ACM New Artist of the Year trophy. Who will be the final three to go on to compete for the award is up to you! The finalists in this coveted category are decided by the fans, with the first round of voting starting at 9:00 AM ET this Monday, Jan. 16, at VoteACM.com and GACTV.com/ACM. You can vote once a day until 12:00 PM ET on Jan. 30.

The Band Perry took ACM New Artist honors last year. Since then, the category has changed a bit in its voting procedures. The Academy used to have Top New Solo Vocalist and Top New Vocal Duo or Group categories, with winners announced before the show. Then, those two winners would compete for the Top New Artist trophy on the live broadcast. But this year, there's just one, all-inclusive category. Thompson Square is the only duo or group in the mix, with Shawna Thompson being the only female nominated this year. Voting for the final two rounds will consist of a combination of industry and fan voting.

The 47th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards will air live from Las Vegas, April 1 at 8:00 PM ET on CBS.

Watch Thompson Square's 'I Got You' Video

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