NASHVILLE – Fresh off announcing that country super-group Little Big Town will host the “2018 CMT Music Awards,” CMT today revealed that Blake Shelton, Chris Stapleton, Kelly Clarkson, Kelsea Ballerini, Luke Bryan and Sam Hunt will perform at this year’s show, premiering LIVE from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, June 6th at 8 pm ET/ PT. Additional performers will be announced soon.
In her “CMT Music Awards” debut, pop superstar Kelly Clarkson will premiere her rendition of iconic rock hit, “American Woman,” from the promotional campaign for the upcoming Paramount Network series of the same title debuting the day after the Awards on Thursday, June 7 at 10pm ET/PT. Inspired by the real-life upbringing of Kyle Richards (“Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”), “American Woman” follows Bonnie (Alicia Silverstone), an unconventional mother struggling to raise her two daughters after leaving her husband with the help of her two best friends, Kathleen (Mena Suvari) and Diana (Jennifer Bartels) in 1970s Los Angeles.
The “2018 CMT Music Awards” nominations announcement made history last week, as pop sensations Bebe Rexha, with her record-breaking, chart-topping collaboration “Meant to Be” with Florida Georgia Line, and Justin Timberlake, with “Say Something” featuring Chris Stapleton, received first time nods for the highly coveted “Video of the Year.” The additional lineup of country stars vying for the title include Blake Shelton, Brett Young, Brothers Osborne, Carrie Underwood featuring Ludacris, Dan + Shay, Jason Aldean, Kane Brown featuring Lauren Alaina, Kelsea Ballerini, Luke Combs and Thomas Rhett. Up for four nominations each, Carrie Underwood (who also currently holds the title of most “CMT Music Awards” wins), Florida Georgia Line and Jason Aldean are tied for most nods.
Fans can vote for their favorite artists now via CMT.com until Monday, June 4th for categories including “Video of the Year,” “Male Video of the Year,” “Female Video of the Year,”, “Duo Video of the Year,” “Group Video of the Year,” “Breakthrough Video of the Year,” “Collaborative Video of the Year” and “CMT Performance of the Year.”
The latest announcement follows renewed ratings growth and critical acclaim for CMT music specials and events due in part to a creative refresh featuring current and genre-bending artist pairings and pro-social elements. In October, “CMT Artists of the Year” notched its highest rating to date and now ranks as one of the fastest growing award shows, while “CMT Crossroads” recently garnered its highest ratings in five years with an episode featuring Backstreet Boys and Florida Georgia Line. The network recently finished its highest-rated quarter since 2014 and notched its fifth consecutive quarter of year-over-year ratings growth. April 2018 was CMT’s best April performance in 4 years, extending to 17 the channel’s streak of consecutive months of year-over-year ratings growth among Adults 18-49 and Women 18-49. (L+SD, CMT Total Day)