Keith Urban, Taylor Swift + More Earn Early CMA Awards
The CMA Awards are still a few weeks away, but the Country Music Association has already presented several trophies at a special ceremony paying tribute to some of country music's most successful artists and songwriters in the past year.
Triple Play Awards were bestowed upon those artists who have achieved three No.1 hits in a 12-month period, with Keith Urban, Taylor Swift, Darius Rucker, Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson and Dierks Bentley all on hand to personally receive the honor. Speaking to a room full of CMA executives, hit songwriters and fellow artists, each recipient used their turn at the podium to express gratitude to those who have helped them achieve their success.
All quotes via CMIL:
Taylor Swift: "I absolutely live in awe of all the people in this room. I've had the time of my life knowing you over the years of writing with you. I think you guys just make other songwriters better. A lot of times I've gone back in my memories of when I started writing songs. I would sit there in my room and write a new song, and the first thing I would feel is, I'd feel proud of this new song. The next thing I would feel was fear because I was afraid that nobody would ever hear it ... Everyone at CMA has been so good to me. I'm very thankful that I don't have to fear that no one is going to hear my songs anymore."
Dierks Bentley: "The first day I moved to this town, I was 19 years old. I had no problem finding where the bars were but I had no idea how to get a boot into this community or how to get started, or anything. I got a job interning at CMA to try to figure out how to even begin to get moving. So this is really cool. I don't take for granted anything that involves CMA."
Carrie Underwood: "To all the writers in this room, you guys have the hardest job. I can stand up there all day and sing -- and I love that -- but you create something out of air. And that is so amazing. I have so much respect for you. I love you guys. Thank you so much. Maybe someday I'll consider myself one of you, but I've got a long way to go."
Brad Paisley: "It's great to be a part of country music. I appreciate you not kicking me out yet. I'd like to thank all the writers and artists in this room. I think I get as much inspiration currently from what's on the radio as I did from old country music. I'm really proud to be a part of it these days.
Keith Urban: "Thank you so much for this, CMA, I guess the new phrase should be 'God bless the girls and the boys who make the noise down on 16th Avenue.' Thank you very much."
Other recipients included Rhett Akins, Kristian Bush and Jennifer Nettles (Sugarland), Zac Brown and Jeffrey Steele. The 44th Annual CMA Awards, hosted by Carrie and Brad, will air live on ABC on November 10.