The ASCAP Country Music Awards were held last night in downtown Nashville, Tennessee. Kicking off CMA Awards week in Music City, the event brought out top country hitmakers and other luminaries including former President Jimmy Carter and pop star Justin Timberlake, on hand to honor friend and ASCAP Voice of Music Award winner Trisha Yearwood. The country music icon and lifestyle maven was honored in song by performances from Lady Antebellum (“Walkaway Joe”), Reba McEntire (“The Song Remembers When”), and husband Garth Brooks’ daughter, Allie Brooks (“She’s in Love with the Boy”).
Top songwriters Dierks Bentley, Eric Paslay, Maddie & Tae and more picked up their awards for writing some of the biggest country songs of the past year. We heard performances from Songwriter of the Year Ashley Gorley, whose live renditions of two of his six top-performing songs of 2014 featured country music superstar Luke Bryan (“Play It Again” and “I See You”). 2014’s top breakout artist Sam Hunt collected two “of the year” trophies: he was named Songwriter-Artist of the Year and earned the Song of the Year prize alongside co-writer Josh Osborne for their hit, “Leave the Night On,” which they also performed. Warner/Chappell took home Publisher of the Year honors with 17 award-winning songs.