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Co-hosts Kristin Chenoweth and Trace Adkins, plus Blake Shelton, Pistol Annies, Thompson Square and more to perform on American Country Awards

by Brandy McDonnell Published: October 31, 2011
Pistol Annies
Pistol Annies

The second American Country Awards will feature plenty of performers with Oklahoma ties.

Along with co-hosting Trace Adkins and Broken Arrow native Kristin Chenoweth are set to make music on the awards show, and the performance lineup also includes country music stars Blake Shelton, an Ada native who lives in Tishomingo; the Pistol Annies, the all-girl trio that includes Shelton’s wife and fellow Tishomingo resident Miranda Lambert; Thompson Square, which includes Miami, OK, native Keifer Thompson; along with Eli Young Band and The Band Perry.

The American Country Awards will air live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, Dec. 5 on Fox.

The two-hour event will also feature appearances by Lambert, Lauren Alaina, Rachel Bilson, Scotty McCreery and the men of the reality TV show “Pawn Stars” (Richard Harrison, Rick Harrison, Corey Harrison and Austin Russell).

Additional performers and presenters will be announced soon, according to a news release.

The two-hour awards show offers country music fans the opportunity to vote for their favorite artists not only in traditional categories, but also in a previously unrecognized area of the business ­ touring ­ encompassing the entire spectrum of country music.

Voting for all categories remains open until Friday, Nov. 11 at Voting for Artist of the Year continues until Friday, Dec. 2. To see the list of nominees, click here.

Shelton has been dubbed one of the “most versatile of contemporary country singers” by The New York Times. The 2010 CMA Male Vocalist of the Year continues to prove to be one of the industry’s hottest vocalists as he caps a successful year with career highlights that includes a national breakout turn as a celebrity vocal coach on the hit NBC reality show “The Voice” and the release of his new album “Red River Blue,” which has spawned three No. 1 hits, and a cover of the iconic theme song to go with the new movie remake of “Footloose.”

The Pistol Annies are comprised of Ashley Monroe (“Hippie Annie”), Angaleena Presley (“Holler Annie”) and Texas native Lambert (“Lone Star Annie”). The trio was born out of a songwriting session when Monroe introduced Lambert to the music of her friend, Presley. “Hell on Heels” is the title track to the trio¹s 2011 debut album. The trio has performed on selected Lambert tour dates and it is planning a tour of its own soon. Every song on “Hell on Heels” was written by one or more of the Annies, who all co-wrote the track “Family Feud” with “Pistol Andy,” AKA Shelton.

One of country music’s biggest breakout acts of 2011, Stoney Creek Records’ Thompson Square has earned 12 major awards show nominations in 2011, including seven ACA nominations, an American Music Award nod for New Artist of the Year, and two CMA nominations for New Artist of the Year and Vocal Duo of the Year. The husband-and-wife team, comprised of the Oklahoma-bred Keifer Thompson and Alabama-bred Shawna Thompson, combine classic country and rock influences to forge a sound that is thoroughly modern, but built on the bedrock of tradition. The duo’s No. 1 single “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not” is country radio’s most played song of the year, according to music industry tracking service Mediabase. Their current single, “I Got You,” is a Top 10 hit. Thompson Square spent the past year on the road opening for multi-platinum country rocker Jason Aldean on his “My Kinda Party 2011 Tour.” The pair joins Darius Rucker’s U.S. tour in November and joins Lady Antebellum’s “Own the Night 2012 World Tour” in January.

The Eli Young Band’s lead single “Crazy Girl,” has been certified platinum with sales of more than 1 million downloads. The song is currently at No. 2 on both country radio charts while the video for the single has tracked more than 6 million views on YouTube. “Life at Best”made its debut at No. 3 on the Billboard Country Albums chart and No. 6 on the Billboard 200. It came in at No. 1 on the iTunes Store Top 10 Country Albums chart and No. 3 on iTunes’ all-genre Top 10 Albums chart, just behind Jay Z/Kanye West and Adele. While currently on tour with Dierks Bentley, EYB is a headliner in its own right, selling out shows across the country from California to Rhode Island.


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by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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