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2011 ACM Awards Winners and Show Highlights

Miranda Lambert is once again the belle of the ball. The Texas songbird led the 46th Annual Academy Awards winners with three trophies: Top Female Vocalist, Single of the Year and Video of the Year for her huge hit, ‘The House That Built Me.’ The songwriters behind the tune, Tom Douglas and Allen Shamblin, also won for Song of the Year.

“I feel so blessed and so humbled,” said Miranda, fighting back tears upon accepting her Vocalist honors. “I thank God for giving me the blessing of living my dream. I love country music fans!”

Taylor Swift is the new ACM Entertainer of the Year, taking home the night’s top honors with a tearful tribute to those who voted for her. “This is the first time I’ve ever won this, and I’m losing my mind!” she said upon accepting her trophy. “The fact that this was from the fans is so beautiful. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me.”

For the first time in ACM history, live performances came from two different stages: the MGM Grand arena and Mandalay Bay, where Sugarland hosted the first-ever ACM Fan Jam. It was a night of a lot of brand-new music, kicking off with Brad Paisley singing his latest, ‘Old Alabama,’ accompanied by the legendary Alabama. Toby Keith followed suit with his brand-new single, ‘Somewhere Else.’ Carrie Underwood was next rocking something else new — pink streaks in her long blond hair — to sing ‘Undo It,’ with the audience going crazy as Aerosmith frontman and ‘American Idol‘ judge Steven Tyler appeared during the second verse to join the ‘Idol’ winner on her hit, followed by the two belting Aerosmith’s classic ‘Walk This Way.’

Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Sugarland’s spine-tingling performance of ‘Tonight’ kicked off the simultaneous broadcast at the Mandalay Bay, followed by Dierks Bentley singing his brand-new ‘Am I the Only One’ while doing a simultaneous workout, running up the stadium stairs to high-five fans in the nose-bleeds.

Keith Urban brought it back to the ACM stage with his romantic ‘Without You,’ followed by a trip back to Mandalay Bay to Top New Solo Vocalist winner Eric Church for the rockin’ ‘Smoke a Little Smoke.’

The night’s first award didn’t come until 53 minutes into the show when Song of the Year honors went to ‘The House That Built Me.’ Taylor Swift followed, playing banjo for the live debut of her song, ‘Mean.’ Then it was back to Mandalay Bay for Top New Vocal Duo or Group winners the Band Perry singing the poignant song that launched them to country stardom, ‘If I Die Young.’ They added Top New Artist winners to their resume directly after the performance, winning the first fan-voted award of the night.

Single Record of the Year honors were next, going to — no surprise — frontrunner Miranda Lambert for ‘The House That Built Me.’ Her fiance Blake Shelton followed with his new song, ‘Honey Bee.’

Lady Antebellum, who swept the Grammy Awards with their hit ‘Need You Now,’ take home ACM Album of the Year honors for the CD of the same name. “Thank you, Miranda Lambert, for winning this last year and not being in the category this year!” Lady A’s Charles Kelley joked upon accepting the trophy.

Sara Evans‘ triumphant return to the ACM stage with her new single, ‘A Little Bit Stronger,’ was met with a standing ovation, as were Top Vocal Group winners Lady A, who took the stage for their second win of the night to thank friends, family, colleagues and all the artists who had them as opening acts on the road.

Miranda was next with ‘Heart Like Mine,’ followed by Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles and Rihanna‘s powerhouse vocals combining on the R&B/pop star’s ‘California King Bed.’

Getty Images

Ronnie Dunn made his awards show debut as a solo act with his new single, ‘Bleed Red.’ Then it was back to the Mandalay Bay for Sugarland to accept Vocal Duo of the Year honors for the fourth year in a row.

Martina McBride‘s brand-new ‘Teenage Daughters’ was next, with the gorgeous mom of three singing in front of projected photos of moms and daughters.

Dad of two sons Brad Paisley is the ACM Top Male Vocalist for the third year in a row. “I’m so grateful to the fans of country music who gave me the chance to do this for a living,” he said from the stage. “I don’t know who got paid … I’m just kidding, it’s all very fair!”

One of the most touching moments of the night came next, with Darius Rucker performing ‘Music From the Heart,’ a song co-written by Chris Young, Brett James and 25 developmentally disabled young adults at the ACM Lifting Lives Music Camp last summer — all of whom joined Darius for the performance, receiving wild cheers from the standing audience.

Reba McEntire hosted the ACMs for the 13th year, with Blake Shelton as her co-host for his very first awards hosting gig. The two provided lots of laughs throughout the three hour broadcast, poking fun of celebrities and one another. Check out some of their best jokes here.


• Jason Aldean
• Toby Keith
• Miranda Lambert
• Brad Paisley
Taylor Swift – WINNER
• Keith Urban

• Jason Aldean
Brad Paisley – WINNER
• Blake Shelton
George Strait
• Keith Urban

Miranda Lambert – WINNER
• Reba McEntire
• Taylor Swift
Carrie Underwood
Lee Ann Womack

• The JaneDear girls
Joey + Rory
Montgomery Gentry
Steel Magnolia
Sugarland – WINNER

Lady Antebellum – WINNER
Little Big Town
Randy Rogers Band
• The Band Perry
• Zac Brown Band

Eric ChurchWINNER
• Easton Corbin
Randy Houser

• the JaneDear girls
• Steel Magnolia
• The Band Perry – WINNER

• The Band Perry – WINNER
Eric Church

ALBUM OF THE YEAR [Award to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company]
• ‘Hemingway’s Whiskey’ – Kenny Chesney (BNA)
Produced by: Buddy Cannon, Kenny Chesney

‘Need You Now’ – Lady Antebellum (Capitol Records Nashville) — WINNER
Produced by: Lady Antebellum, Paul Worley

• ‘The Guitar Song’ – Jamey Johnson (Mercury)
Produced by: Arlis Albritton, Dave Cobb, The Kent Hardly Playboys

• ‘Speak Now’ – Taylor Swift (Big Machine Records)
Produced by: Nathan Chapman, Taylor Swift

• ‘Up on the Ridge’ – Dierks Bentley (Capitol Records Nashville)
Produced by: Jon Randall Stewart

• ‘You Get What You Give’ – Zac Brown Band (Southern Ground / Roar / Bigger Picture / Atlantic)
Produced by: Zac Brown, Keith Stegall

SINGLE RECORD OF THE YEAR [Award to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company]
• ‘A Little More Country Than That’ – Easton Corbin (Mercury)
Produced by: Carson Chamberlain

• ‘As She’s Walking Away’ – Zac Brown Band Featuring Alan Jackson (Southern Ground / Roar / Bigger Picture / Atlantic)
Produced by: Zac Brown, Keith Stegall

• ‘If I Die Young’ – The Band Perry (Republic Nashville)
Produced by: Paul Worley

• ‘Love Like Crazy’ – Lee Brice (Curb Records)
Produced by: Lee Brice, Doug Johnson

• ‘The Boys of Fall’ – Kenny Chesney (BNA)
Produced by: Buddy Cannon, Kenny Chesney

‘The House That Built Me’ – Miranda Lambert (Columbia Nashville) – WINNER
Produced by: Frank Liddell, Mike Wrucke

SONG OF THE YEAR [Award to Composer(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s)]
• ‘A Little More Country Than That’ – Easton Corbin
Composers: Rory Lee Feek, Don Poythress, Wynn Varble
Publishers: A Sling And A Prayer Music (ASCAP), Chrysalis One Music (ASCAP), Don Poythress Songs (ASCAP), Precious Flour Music (BMI), Universal Music-MGB Songs (ASCAP), Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (BMI)

• ‘As She’s Walking Away’ – Zac Brown Band Featuring Alan Jackson
Composers: Zac Brown, Wyatt Durrette
Publishers: Angelika Music (BMI), Weimerhound Publishing (BMI)

• ‘If I Die Young’ – The Band Perry
Composer: Kimberly Perry
Publishers: Pearlfeather Publishing (BMI), Rio Bravo Music, Inc. (BMI)

• ‘Love Like Crazy’ – Lee Brice
Composers: Tim James, Doug Johnson
Publishers: Mike Curb Music (BMI), Sweet Radical Music (BMI), T-Bird’s Music (BMI), Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (BMI)

‘The House That Built Me’ – Miranda Lambert – WINNER
Composers: Tom Douglas, Allen Shamblin

Publishers: Built On Rock (ASCAP), Sony/ATV Tree Publishing (BMI), Tomdouglasmusic (BMI)

VIDEO OF THE YEAR [Award to Producer(s)/Director(s)/Artist(s)] *(Off Camera Award)
• ‘Hillbilly Bone’ – Blake Shelton Featuring Trace Adkins
Producer: Randy Brewer
Director: Roman White

• ‘Only Prettier’ – Miranda Lambert
Producer: Trent Hardville
Director: Trey Fanjoy

• ‘Stuck Like Glue’ – Sugarland
Producer: Tony McGarry
Director: Declan Whitebloom

• ‘The Boys of Fall’ – Kenny Chesney
Producer: Don Lepore
Director: Shaun Silva

‘The House That Built Me’ – Miranda Lambert – WINNER
Producer: Trent Hardville
Director: Trey Fanjoy

VOCAL EVENT OF THE YEAR [Award to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company] (Off Camera Award)
‘As She’s Walking Away’ – Zac Brown Band Featuring Alan Jackson (Southern Ground / Roar / Bigger Picture / Atlantic) – WINNER
Produced by: Zac Brown, Keith Stegall

• ‘Blue Sky’ – Emily West Featuring Keith Urban (Capitol Records Nashville)
Produced by: Mark Bright

• ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter’ – Loretta Lynn, Sheryl Crow and Miranda Lambert (Columbia Nashville)
Produced by: John Carter Cash, Patsy Lynn Russell

• ‘Cold Beer’ – Colt Ford Featuring Jamey Johnson (Average Joes)
Produced by: Shannon Houchins, Adrian Young

• ‘Good to Be Me’ – Uncle Kracker Featuring Kid Rock (Top Dog/ Atlantic / Bigger Picture)
Produced by: Kid Rock

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