For Your Consideration: CMA New Artist of the Year

Our For Your Consideration series’ third installment will be looking at the CMA New Artist of the Year category. This year we’ve seen plenty of new talent shoot to the top of the charts with smash singles and great selling albums proving they can hang with country’s superstars. As usual, we will pick five artists we think have a shot to land a nomination in this category.

Last year Darius Rucker nabbed his first CMA nominations, one for New Artist and the other in the Male Vocalist field. On the night of the awards show, he walked away with the New Artist trophy, beating out fellow nominees Randy Houser, Jamey Johnson, Jake Owen, and the Zac Brown Band. This year, we could see one of those artists nominated again, and could possibly walk away with the win. Here are the five artists we think have the best shot at getting nominated.

Zac Brown Band

In this category, artists are allowed to be nominated two times if they don’t win in their first nomination. Last year, the Zac Brown Band enjoyed its first nomination in this category, but didn’t win. This year, they will go into the ceremony as the frontrunner if they are nominated. Their album, The Foundation, has stayed inside the top five for most of this year. That album has yielded three consecutive number one singles in “Toes,” “Highway 20 Ride,” and “Free.” The band is currently on tour headlining shows at festivals and fairs.

Luke Bryan

This year Luke Bryan has experienced a breakthrough year. His album, Doin’ My Thing, debuted at number two on the country albums chart and has since sold over 300,000 copies. He had back-to-back singles peak inside the top two on the singles chart with “Do I” and “Rain is a Good Thing” (which hit number one). Earlier this year, he won his first ACM award for New Artist of the Year beating out Joey + Rory, and Gloriana. Right now he’s the supporting act on Jason Aldean’s Wide Open tour.

Chris Young

Chris Young has been around for a few years now but he’s finally gaining success in the industry. This year, he’s had back-to-back number one singles with “Getting You Home (The Black Dress Song)” and “The Man I Want to Be.” Both singles are off his sophomore album, The Man I Want to Be, which has sold over 300,000 copies since its release last September. He enjoyed his second ACM nomination for Top New Solo Vocalist and has been on the road with Rascal Flatts.

Easton Corbin

Easton Corbin has had an incredible debut year. His self-titled debut album, Easton Corbin, debuted at number four and has since sold over 200,000 copies since its release in March. The album’s lead single, “A Little More Country Than That,” shot straight to number one, making Corbin the first solo male country artist to have a debut single go number one since Dierks Bentley did it in 2003 with “What Was I Thinking.” Easton has been tapped as a supporting act on Brad Paisley’s H2O World Tour.

Steel Magnolia

Steel Magnolia came to light after winning CMT’s Can You Duet talent competition and has since found success on the singles chart. The duo’s debut single, “Keep On Lovin’ You,” peaked inside the top five and found itself on the motion picture soundtrack for the movie Valentine’s Day. Earlier this year, the duo received its first ACM nominations for Top Vocal Duo and Top New Vocal Duo. Steel Magnolia is also among the many supporting acts on Brad Paisley’s H2O World tour.

Bubbling Under

David Nail
David Nail’s hit single “Red Light” became his first top 10 hit and nabbed him his first ACM nomination for Single Record of the Year. His follow up single “Turning Home” became his second top 20 hit and he’s been tapped for the opening act on Lady Antebellum’s fall Need You Now Tour.

Jamey Johnson
He was nominated last year after the massive critical acclaim for his album, That Lonesome Song, and his smash single “In Color.” However, he hasn’t had a big impact on the charts this year which could find him left off the list of nominees.

Gloriana has had a top 15 hit with its debut single “Wild At Heart.” The group’s self-titled album debuted at number two and they’ve toured with Taylor Swift on her Fearless tour. The group also won last year’s American Music Award for Breakthrough Artist as well as this year’s ACM for Top New Vocal Group.

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