"And that feels like an honor in and of itself," Carpenter said beforehand. "I know that I stand on a lot of shoulders just to get to this place. I'm just so happy."
The Nashville Songwriters Association International also gave out its yearly songwriting awards. Taylor Swift won the songwriter/artist of the year award for the fifth time in six years and remains at 22 that award's youngest winner. Dallas Davidson was named songwriter of the year. And Dolly Parton's enduring hit "I Will Always Love You," which reached No. 1 again this year after Whitney Houston's death, was named song of the year.