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Cheat Sheet – Everything You Need to Know About The 2021 CMT Music Awards 

Kane Brown is set to co-host the honky-tonk night for the second consecutive year, alongside Kelsea Ballerini. 

Tip your cowboy hat if you are ready for the biggest night in country music! Turn on your go-to country artist and crank up the volume because the 2021 CMT Music Awards is just hours away and Celeb Secrets Country is here to prepare you for the star-studded affair. 


You might be thinking to yourself, didn’t the CMTs recently take place in October? Well, the answer is YES! Like many other events within the past year, Country Music Television had to postpone the ceremony because of the Coronavirus. Now, that the world is slowly opening back up, the network is back on schedule. 


In October, we watched Carrie Underwood take home “Video of The Year” and “Female Video of The Year” for her chart-topping banger “Drinking Alone.” Old Dominion, Dan + Shay, and Blake Shelton are some of the musicians who walked away with a CMT award last year. Now, it’s time to 

crown the next deserving country music stars, who recently had an impact on their fans. 


So, whether you are tuning in to see who earns each title, for the cutting-edge talent, the country-inspired fashion, or to hear from the awesome nominees, we got you covered! 

GIVE us a follow on Twitter at @CS_Country and IG at @CS_Country, as we’ll be live-tweeting and Instagramming the best moments from the eventful night! 


What are the CMT Music Awards? 

This ceremony is different than others, as honorees are entirely fan-voted. Country Music Television hosts the annual show every year out of Nashville, Tennessee. The country-filled evening has a rich history, as it was called “Music City News Awards” back in 1967. In 2002 the name changed again to “CMT Flameworthy Video Music Awards” and it wasn’t until 2005 when the network shifted gears and decided on “CMT Music Awards.” 

The legendary two-and-a-half-hour award show is known for celebrating the top music videos and performances of the year! 

How can I watch the CMT Music Awards?

Pour yourself a glass of whiskey and get ready to be glued to your television screens, because on Wednesday, June 9 at 8 p.m. ET and 7 p.m. CT on CMT, MTV, MTV2, Logo, Paramount Network, TV Land, and CMT Australia – the 2021 CMT Music Awards will be airing LIVE from Nashville. The show airs on tape delay on the West Coast.


Who is hosting?

CMT announced that Kane Brown and Kelsea Ballerini will be teaming up to host the star-studded night. It’s no surprise that CMT has hand-picked Kane and Kelsea to bring the summer heat during the weekday event, as they are known to dominate the stage with their country-pop bangers. In fact, Kane’s recent performance of “Famous Friends” with Chris Young at the 2021 ACM Awards and his incredible hosting job at the 2020 CMT Awards with Sarah Hyland and Ashley McBryde proves that he is worthy of this outstanding honor once again. However, this will be Ballerini’s first time taking center stage at the CMT Awards as host.

“I loved getting a chance to host the CMT Music Awards last year and I’m excited to be back this year with Kelsea. The CMT Music Awards are special to me – it’s the first industry award I won and getting on that stage was an amazing feeling. I love that the fans get to have their voice heard as we celebrate the best in country music,” Kane shared in a statement.

Is there a red carpet?

Yes! There will be a socially distanced red carpet at the 2021 CMT Music Awards. Follow us on Twitter @CS_Country and Instagram @CS_Country for live updates.

Who is Performing? 

Kick on your dancing shoes, country fans because Nashville will be moving and grooving tonight with outstanding performances. However, CMT is changing it up a bit and serving us, powerful collaborations between our favorite stars in the industry. 

Kelsea Ballerini and Kane Brown will be taking a break from hosting and will each take the stage to perform. Fans could also expect to see Ballerini alongside Paul Klein from LANY and Brown with country star Chris Young. Other collaborations include BRELAND with Mickey Guyton, Brothers Osborne and Derks Bentley, H.E.R. with Chris Stapleton, Ingrid Andress and JP Saxe, Lady A with Carly Pearce and Lindsay Ell, Lauren Alaina with Jon Pardi, Mickey Guyton with Gladys Knight, Miranda Lambert with Jack Ingram and Jon Randall, and NEEDTOBREATHE with the one and only Carrie Underwood

Solo performances include – Chris Stapleton, Luke Combs, Luke Bryan, and Thomas Rhett. Several rising stars in the industry such as Blanco Brown, Dylan Scott, Hailey Whitters, Lainey Wilson, Niko Moon, and Tenille Arts will perform on the Ram Trucks Side Stage. 

 Who is presenting? 

Anthony Mackie, Brett Young, Busy Philipps, Carly Pearce, Dylan Scott, Gladys Knight, lliza Shlesinger, Little Big Town, Michael Strahan, Mickey Guyton, Restless Road, Tennessee Titans’ Taylor Lewan, Trace Adkins, and CMT Hot 20 Countdown Hosts Cody Alan, Katie Cook, and Ashley ShahAhmadi, will all be presenting at the 2021 CMT Music Awards


Who are the big nominees?

Rolling into the night with the most nominations are two female powerhouses – Maren Morris and Miranda Lambert with four accolades each. The four nominations are for “Female Video of The Year,” “Collaborative Video of The Year,” and two nominations each for “Video of The Year.” Trailing behind with three nominations include show co-hosts Kelsea Ballerini, Kane Brown, Little Big Town, and Mickey Guyton

Several other leading names in country music have reached a career milestone, as they will be celebrating their first-ever CMT nomination. Front-runner Mickey Guyton, Dylan Scott, Hailey Whitters, HARDY, Lainey Wilson, Margo Prince, Nathaniel Rateliff, Niko Moon, Noah Cyrus, Parmalee, Ryan Hurd, Tayler Hubbard, and Willie Jones will all be crossing their fingers come Wednesday, June 9. 

 When you sit down to watch the two-and-a-half-hour show, expect to see familiar faces from outside country music. The 2021 CMT Music Awards will feature Elle King, Halsey, John Legend, Nathaniel Rateliff, Noah Cyrus, and P!nk – all six musicians are currently nominated for their work with a country music star. 

Fans can STILL VOTE at

Who is Receiving the Equal Play Award? 

Linda Martell will be receiving the “Equal Play Award” at the 2021 CMT Music Awards. Martell was the first black female solo artist to perform on the Grand Ole Opry stage. The historic night at the legendary concert hall, made Martell into the trailblazer she is today. The “Bad Case of the Blues” singer and songwriter has paved the way for other black performers within country music. 

Mickey Guyton will be presenting the award to Martell, who will be honored by Rissi Palmer, Darius Rucker, Rhiannon Giddens, Carrie Underwood, and Jennifer Nettles

Written by Tiffany Goldstein

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