Chris Stapleton Calls 2016 ACM Awards Monologue ‘a Wonderful Gift’
During Dierks Bentley and Luke Bryan's 2016 ACM Awards-opening monologue, numerous country stars, from Jason Aldean to Charles Kelley, jokingly tried to take credit for Chris Stapleton's recent meteoric rise to stardom. The singer-songwriter, who looked amused, if slightly embarrassed, as the cameras panned to him and wife Morgane throughout the sketch, admitted after the fact that he had no idea he would be mentioned in the monologue -- but, after watching it go down, he approves.
"You know, it’s a strange thing, and it’s a wonderful gift, and I’m grateful for it," Stapleton says. "It was a pretty funny monologue.
"I didn’t know anything about it, and as soon as it started, I thought, 'This is gonna go on and on,''' he continues. "I thought it might have carried on throughout the night, and I was a little worried about that, ’cause it could have gotten darker and darker, but I don’t know ... it didn’t, so we're good."
Stapleton has been around Nashville for quite some time, but, until recently, he was behind the scenes as a songwriter. He released his debut album as a solo artist, Traveller, last spring, and while it quickly earned love from critics and fellow artists, Stapleton's music went relatively unnoticed by the general public until the 2015 CMA Awards, at which he took home trophies for New Artist of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year and Album of the Year, and gave an unforgettable performance with Justin Timberlake.
Following the CMAs, Traveller soared to No. 1, and Stapleton has continued to earn additional accolades: Best Country Album and Best Country Solo Performance at the 2016 Grammy Awards and, at the ACMs, Male Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year and Song of the Year, among others. His 2016 ACM Awards wins tied the record for the most number of ACM trophies won in a single night.
As the ACM Awards monologue proved, Stapleton has been a country music force for years now -- and someone that just about everyone seems thrilled is finally getting his due.
"Everybody outside of Nashville has known him over the last couple years; everybody in this town has known about Chris Stapleton for the last decade," Trace Adkins told The Boot following the 2015 CMA Awards. "[His success] reflects what everybody else in this town, what we’ve all known for a long time: That guy a is super-talented guy, and it’s really good that he got that recognition.”
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