Country music superstars Kelsea Ballerini and Kane Brown hosted Sunday night’s show. Blake Shelton was the first performer to take the stage, followed by a lineup of musicians that included Jelly Roll, Cody Johnson, Lainey Wilson and Carly Pearce.
CMT also added four-time Grammy-winning Austinite and legendary songwriter, singer, guitarist and producer Gary Clark Jr. for a one-of-a-kind tribute to late Texas Blues legend Stevie Ray Vaughan, finalizing the colossal roster of star-packed performances and tributes for the the 2023 CMT Music Awards.
Here are 3 things to know if you missed the show:
1. The broadcast marked Austin’s first major televised awards show.
According to a CMT press release, the 2023 CMT Music Awards marked Austin’s first major televised awards show. CMT Music Awards producers shared in a statement their excitement to host the show in Austin, saying Austin and Nashville are “two of the world’s greatest music cities.”
“The programming team at Oak View Group and Moody Center has spent the past two years cultivating this relationship and working to endear CMT, CBS and Paramount to Austin and our new, world-class arena. CMT’s commitment to Austin reflects those efforts, and we couldn’t be more grateful and excited to host them next year,” said Michael Owens, vice president of programming at the Moody Center, in the release announcing the April 2 show.
2. The CMT Music Awards followed five preshow events in Austin from March 29-April 1.
Leading up to the awards show, a stacked lineup of events took place from March 29-April 2, including a variety of special performances and taping events for fans to participate in.
Taking place at various places throughout the city, including live music venue Stubb’s Bar-B-Q, the events included live tapings of the “CMT Hot 20 Countdown: Live in Austin” and “CMT Crossroads” with Darius Rucker and The Black Crowes.
“We are beyond thrilled to welcome the CMT Music Awards to Moody Center in 2023,” said Tom Noonan, Austin Convention & Visitors Bureau president and CEO, in a release announcing the awards show’s move. “This event will have not only a huge financial impact on Austin and its tourism industry, but it will also showcase two of the top music brands globally, Austin as The Live Music Capital of the World and Country Music Television.”
3. Kane Brown and his wife, Katelyn Brown, took home the biggest award of the night. Their duet, “Thank God,” won Video of the Year.
Other nominees for Video of the Year included Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, Cody Johnson, Morgan Wallen and HARDY featuring Lainey Wilson.
More winners at the 2023 CMT Music Awards include:
- Collaborative Video of The Year: “wait in the truck” by HARDY (feat. Lainey Wilson)
- Breakthrough Female Video of the Year: “Tennessee Orange” by Megan Moroney
- Breakthrough Male Video of the Year: “Son of a Sinner” by Jelly Roll
- CMT Equal Play Award: Shania Twain
- Female Video of the Year: “Heart Like a Truck” by Lainey Wilson
- Male Video of the Year: “Son of a Sinner” by Jelly Roll
- Performance of the Year: “Til You Can’t” by Cody Johnson