Congratulations are in order to Kacey Musgraves, Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian; Golden Hour is the newly crowned 2018 CMA Album of the Year. Every time an album's released, the artist and producer(s) have put hours of time, creativity, energy and passion into the project. This year's nominees each brought something different, with a variety of backgrounds, experiences and styles represented.

Little Big Town took the stage to hand out Album of the Year. Group member Kimberly Schlapman's words were perfect: "For all the little girls writing songs out there ... Kacey Musgraves!"

When Musgraves rose from her seat and walked toward the stage, she paused, turned around and put her hand over her heart looking at the crowd, soaking in the moment.

"This is really really crazy timing because I just realized this morning, 10 years ago today I moved to Nashville," she said. "We put everything we had into this and I am so proud of it." She added, "It's about this beautiful universe and all of you...My husband, I miss you, I love you. My family. This is awesome. Thank you so much."

Musgraves was the only female artist nominated in this category in 2018, and her Golden Hour album stands out for its venture into a new sonic world. Instead of relying on country-friendly instruments, she branched out to synths, vocoders and disco beats; while her past songs have leaned heavily on observation and wit, this record turned into more personal territory.

Musgraves released the record (her third) on March 30; she co-produced it with Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian. Golden Hour debuted in the fourth spot on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart and at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums and Americana / Folk Albums charts.

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