The 2014 CMA Awards are in the books and it was definitely an interesting night. Miranda Lambert was the biggest winner of the night, taking home four awards. Luke Bryan took home the award for Entertainer of the Year, his first CMA Awards win and Vince Gill became the second artist to win the Irving Waugh Award of Excellence for his lifetime of work in the genre of county music. Here are our four biggest takeaways from the evening:
Florida Georgia Line Gets it Right
It was a good night for the boys of Florida Georgia Line with a win for vocal duo of the year and a strong live performance. Instead of their usual high energy performances they decided to strip things down for a heartfelt version of dirt. Upon two barstools, both Hubbard and Kelly strummed the guitar with the band in the faded background. Hubbard lead a strong vocal performance that included a few solos from Kelly who continues to improved his ability as a singer.
Jason Aldean Struggles Live
As good as the night was for Florida Georgia Line, it was that bad for Aldean. With zero nominations, he took to the stage to sing his smash hit “Burnin’ it Down.” The performance seemed almost unnatural for Aldean, which isn’t good considering he’s been singing the song live for over three months now. It’s a song that doesn’t allow for Aldean to lean on the crutch of his band. Lead guitarist, and usual co-frontman, Kurt Allison found himself standing in the shadows as Aldean stood front and center.
The End of “Drunk on a Plane”
Dierks Bentley only won a single award, but he found himself talked about for much of the night. Winning the award for Music Video of the Year for his song “Drunk on a Plane,” Bentley took the CMA Awards stage to sing the smash hit. For those wondering when the song would finally be phased out of radio playlists, this should be the moment. Bentley gave a strong performance of the song, but the stage set up stole the show. Standing at the end of a mock runway, with a number of flight info boards.
Big Night for the Women of Country
It was a night highlighted by the women of country music. Kacey Musgraves won the award for single of the year with her song “Follow Your Arrow” and Miranda Lambert had the best night of any artist. Lambert won the award for Female Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year, as well as Song of the Year with “Automatic.” Fans left themselves wondering why artists such as Eric Church and Keith Urban went home empty-handed. One could argue that Church deserved Album of the Year for his record The Outsiders, but Lambert’s Platinum was the next best choice.