Nashville recently celebrated the 44th annual CMA Awards, but the star-studded gala was minus one superstar, both in nominations and in presence. Toby Keith, who has won only two CMA awards in his career, which has spanned more than 17 years, hasn't been nominated for the coveted trophy since 2005, in spite of nine platinum-selling albums, dozens of Top 10 singles and an almost non-stop touring schedule that has taken him all over the world. Still, the Oklahoma-native says he has more important things to consider.

"I can go spend the rest of the year working on my Ford endorsement, making a movie, doing commercials, doing music," Toby tells the Toronto Sun." I can do other things instead of going into town five or six times a year trying to politic my way into an award. It hasn't affected me one bit."

Toby says he made the decision several years ago to separate himself from the way other country artists operate. "I don't live in Nashville and it's just negative energy," he continues. "It's 364 days a year of politicking, trying to get that stuff and then one night watching 13 out of 15 come from the same label. I just said about five years ago, 'I'm not going no more.' And I haven't been back."

Instead, Toby has kept himself occupied with running his chain of I Love This Bar & Grill restaurants, in addition to continuing to make new music. His latest single, 'Bullets in the Gun,' which is the title track of his recently released album, is currently one slot away from landing in the Top 20. The tune, he explains, is a 21st century take on the age-old love story.

"I wanted to do an attitude song, where a drifter, instead of riding a horse is riding a motorcycle, and make it a Western theme but bring to modern day time," Toby tells The Boot. "In the name of love, this drifter meets his soul mate, and she's wilder and crazier and maybe even meaner than he is ... He's probably been drifting all over the world on his motorcycle for years and encounters all kinds of different relationships, but this one was different. He met his soul mate."

The 49-year old entertainer hasn't been ignored by the American Country Awards. He's nominated for Touring Headline Package of the Year and is set to perform on the show next month.

Download Toby Keith Songs | Buy 'Bullets in the Gun'