CMA Awards celebrates female country artists

Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood, and Dolly Parton hosted the 53rd annual CMA Awards on November 13, 2019. (Photo courtesy of CMA Awards official website)

Story by Aaliyah Johnson

Photo courtesy of the CMA Awards official website

The 53rd annual CMA Awards aired on Wednesday, November 13. The CMAs dedicated the night’s show to all female artists and celebrated all the legendary women in country music. Many artists spoke out against the negative treatment of female artists on country music radio.

“Play our f****’n records. Please and thank you,” bravely read the inside of Jennifer Nettles’ cape as she walked down the CMAs red carpet.

Jennifer Nettles shows off her cape emblazoned with a message to the country music recording industry. (Photo courtesy of Rolling Stone and ABC/Image Group LA)

The night’s show started with a medley of songs, including Dolly Parton’s “Those Memories Of You”, sung by hosts Carrie Underwood, Reba McEntire, and Parton herself. Other songs that were performed included Sara Evans’ “Born To Fly” and Martina McBride’s “Independence Day.”

Going more into the show, the hosts mentioned the obvious gender divide on country radio, and the statements were justified as Garth Brooks won Entertainer Of The Year for the third time. Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus celebrated a win for Musical Event of the Year with “Old Time Road (Remix),” with it being the first televised win for an openly gay country artist. Maren Morris, however, won Album Of The Year for Girl and Ashley McBryde won New Artist Of The Year. Kacey Musgraves won Female Vocalist Of The Year, all supporting the rise of female musicians in a male-dominated genre. After McBryde’s win, she delivered a heartfelt speech telling women artists that they need to step up if they want to keep winning awards.

Kacey Musgraves also gave a powerful acceptance speech in which she recognizes the impact of women. “I feel that the female creative spirit, the female energy it’s really needed right now,” she said. “And so whether it’s me that’s up here or any of the other women in this category, I just think it’s a beautiful thing.”

Other notable performances included Pink and Chris Stapleton with “Love Me Anyway”, Lady Antebellum and Halsey with Antebellum’s “What If I Never Get Over You” and Halsey’s “Graveyard”; and Dolly Parton and For King and Country with “God Only Knows”

To contact Lifestyles Editor Brandon Black, email

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