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Carrie keeps the spotlight at country awards
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Carrie Underwood won two awards and Rascal Flatts took home a trophy at the Country Music Association's 41st Annual CMA Awards.The awards show was broadcast live Wednesday night from the Sommet Center in Nashville. Underwood, who grew up in Checotah, won the female vocalist of the year award for the second straight year. She paid tribute to county music fans and her "American Idol” beginnings as she accepted the trophy. "Here I go again; the waterworks have started. God has blessed me with so many great things in my life, and I will spend the rest of my entire life trying to figure out why,” she said, dabbing tears and stammering as she tried to thank everyone. Radiant in a cream and gold Badgley Mischka gown, Underwood said on the red carpet before the show that if she won female vocalist, she planned to call her mom right away, just as she did last year. The 2005 "American Idol” winner, who performed her new song "So Small,” also won single of the year for her hit "Before He Cheats.” "I'm excited to be in the company that I'm in. It's amazing. We have so many performers, not just in country music but other genres of music, gathering to celebrate country music and what a year it's had,” Underwood said on the pre-show red carpet. Rascal Flatts was named vocal group of the year for the fifth straight year. "Thank you, guys; we appreciate it so much. CMAs, guys, come on!” guitarist Joe Don Rooney said as the group accepted the trophy. The trio opened the show with a rocking rendition of their hit "Still Feels Good.” Rooney, who hails from Picher, grinned and bobbed his head as he played. "It is an honor and a privilege to be opening the CMA Awards. You know, it's the 41st, and we're going to close it, too, with (Oscar winner and R&B artist) Jamie Foxx. So two performances; it's going to be a lot of fun,” Rooney told The Oklahoman on the red carpet before the show. Rascal Flatts was the only group nominated for entertainer of the year — the CMA Awards' top prize — but lost to solo artist Kenny Chesney, who claimed the coveted award for the third time.
High hopes for OklahomansOklahomans were nominated in several categories but watched those trophies go to other artists.
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Carrie Underwood (from Checotah) holds the awards for female vocalist of the year and single of the year at the Music Association awards. Associated Press
Winners•Entertainer of the Year: Kenny Chesney •Single: "Before He Cheats,” Carrie Underwood. •Album: "It Just Comes Natural,” George Strait. •Song: "Give It Away,” Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson. •Female Vocalist: Carrie Underwood. •Male Vocalist: Brad Paisley. •Vocal Group: Rascal Flatts. •Vocal Duo: Sugarland. •Musical Event: "Find Out Who Your Friends Are,” Tracy Lawrence with Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney. •Musician: Jerry Douglas. •Music Video: "Online,” Brad Paisley. •Horizon Award: Taylor Swift.
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