Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley Ready for Their Encore
Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley are busy prepping for their duties as hosts of the CMA Awards for the second time -- and the pair admit they're thrilled to be invited back for a second consecutive year.
"We both left there feeling like we were starting to get the hang of it and hoping we would get asked back again," Brad tells CMA. "Right away, we were both talking about that."
Carrie looks at the invitation as a validation of their hard work last year. "You think of all the people that have hosted it in the past," she says. "And for them to ask, we must be doing something right."
Both recall the pre-show jitters they had last year. As first-time hosts of an awards show, they knew they were under the watchful eye of millions of fans. "It was definitely on our minds, "Carrie says. "Everybody's there for a common goal: to celebrate a wonderful year in music with each other. You don't want to be the reason that people think, 'That was just an OK show.'"
As nervous as they were, they both remember the same moment they knew they were doing just fine. Seeing 12-time host Vince Gill laugh and bury his face in his hands during their opening banter gave Brad and Carrie the assurance they needed. But it was an off-hand comment between two Hollywood movie stars that made Brad smile the rest of the evening.
"Right after the monologue, [presenters] Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman were waiting backstage and I heard that he sad to someone, 'They're doing relly good,' which was really cool to hear," Brad says, noting that Hugh had previously hosted both the Tonys and the Oscars.
This year, both Brad and Carrie are also nominees, with Brad leading the pack with seven nominations. And even though they're both familiar with winning awards -- with 16 wins between them -- they both say it never gets old.
"It means a lot," Brad says of his 11 wins. "It means that you've made history in a way that very few people in country music have." Carrie agrees, saying, "In the back of the program book, they list all of the winners from the past. You get to see every Female Vocalist, Male Vocalist, Entertainer of the Year -- everything. It's amazing to see your name there with so many incredible artists. That's something that can never be taken away from you."
Brad and Carrie will also perform during the live show, which airs Nov. 11 on ABC.