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New Artist Nominees React to CMA Awards Nominations

Thomas Rhett Brandy Clark Cole Swindell
Rick Diamond / Ethan Miller / Michael Loccisano, Getty Images

The CMA Awards’ New Artist of the Year nominees are speaking out about their nominations.

Cole Swindell shared a heartfelt speech in a video for his fans.

“Thank you so much, CMA, for the nomination,” Swindell says. “Fans, without you all, I would have never had a shot at this. I thought it was a long shot anyway, so thank you all for all your support, showing up at my shows, buying my albums, all these things that you all have done for me … I’m so humbled, so grateful, and I want you all to know that this just fires me up. The fact that I got nominated makes me want to bust my butt even harder.”

Thomas Rhett says he knows exactly what he’ll do if he hears his name called during the ceremony.

“I’ll probably cry,” he admits to Rolling Stone Country. “I cry during Nicholas Sparks movies, so if I win the award, I’ll probably be in tears. All my artist buddies make fun of me for being such a sensitive human being.”

Still, the ‘Make Me Wanna’ singer adds that being named in the category comes with its own set of pressures.

“I’m not exactly saying that, as a new artist, you have to fit into most of what the headliners are doing,” he says, “but there’s a part of you that feels like it has to put out songs that are hits. If a new artist wants to put out some sort of off-the-wall, crazy-deep ballad about the sun or whatever, it might be hard to get traction. It’s so much easier for someone established to put out a really heartfelt, deep song and get it played in radio.”

Kip Moore, Brett Eldredge and Brandy Clark took to Twitter to share their excitement.

Kacey Musgraves took home the New Artist of the Year trophy last year. She’s nominated for two awards this year, for Female Vocalist of the Year and Music Video of the Year for ‘Follow Your Arrow.’

The 48th annual CMA Awards will air live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 5 at 8 PM ET on ABC.

NEXT: What Do the 2014 CMA Awards Nominations Mean for Country Music?

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