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[09/17/07 - 12:20 PM]
First Round of Performers Announced for "The 41st Annual Cma Awards"
Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts, George Strait and Keith Urban are all set to perform.

[via press release from ABC]

FIRST ROUND OF PERFORMERS ANNOUNCED FOR "THE 41st ANNUAL CMA AWARDS"

Country Superstars Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts, George Strait and Keith Urban to Perform

The excitement is building for "The 41st Annual CMA Awards," as it was announced today that Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Rascal Flatts, George Strait and Keith Urban will perform. "The 41st Annual CMA Awards" will be telecast live WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 7 (8:00-11:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network from the Sommet Center in Nashville.

CMA's reigning Entertainer of the Year, Chesney received four nominations this year for Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Musical Event with Tracy Lawrence and Tim McGraw on Lawrence's "Find Out Who Your Friends Are," and Music Video of the Year for "You Save Me" directed by Shaun Silva. His latest album, "Just Who I Am: Poets & Pirates," was released September 11.

McBride also had four nominations for the 2007 CMA Awards, including Female Vocalist, Single, Song and Music Video of the Year for "Anyway," which she co-wrote with brothers Brad and Brett Warren. McBride could pick up an additional trophy as producer for Single of the Year for the inspiring ballad. She released "Waking up Laughing" in April.

Rascal Flatts was nominated for Entertainer and Vocal Group of the Year. The Entertainer of the Year category has only been won by two groups in CMA Awards history, Alabama (1982, 1983, 1984) and Dixie Chicks (2000). Rascal Flatts has swept the Vocal Group of the Year category the past four years. The next album by Rascal Flatts, "Still Feels Good," will be released September 25.

A 2006 inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Strait tied with Brad Paisley for the most CMA Awards nominations with five. Strait's nominations include Entertainer, Male Vocalist, Album for "It Just Comes Natural" (co-produced by Tony Brown), Musical Event with Jimmy Buffett and Alan Jackson for the live version of "Hey Good Lookin'," and Single of the Year for "Wrapped." Strait could win two additional trophies as producer for Single and Album of the Year.

Urban, CMA's reigning Male Vocalist of the Year, received three nominations for Entertainer, Male Vocalist and Album of the Year for "Love, Pain & the whole crazy thing," which he co-produced with Dann Huff. Urban has won the Male Vocalist Award every year he has been nominated (2004-2006). He won Entertainer of the Year in 2005. Look for his "Greatest Hits" in stores November 20.

Additional artists will be added to the lineup and announced at a later date. A total of 12 CMA Awards in the following categories will be presented: Entertainer of the Year, Single of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year, Vocal Duo of the Year, Musical Event of the Year, Musician of the Year, Music Video of the Year and the Horizon Award -- which is given to the artist with the most significant creative and career growth.

"The 41st Annual CMA Awards" is a production of the Country Music Association. Walter C. Miller is the executive producer, and Robert Deaton is the producer. Paul Miller is the director. The special will be shot in high definition and broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC's selected HDTV format, with 5.1 channel surround sound, and be broadcast with Spanish subtitles via secondary closed captioning.





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