Home / Music News / CMA Nominees Roundup: Randy Houser, Jason Aldean, Dan + Shay


While a handful of artists have multiple CMA nominations this year, some have just one, but that doesn’t make that single nod any less meaningful.

Randy Houser is up for Song of the Year for co-writing his hit “Like a Cowboy,” and he thinks it’s the ultimate accolade. “All I ever wanted to be was a decent songwriter, so this is literally the highest honor I could ever get,” he says. “I’ve been nominated for CMA Awards before for New Artist and also for Video, but this one for me is such a direct correlation of something I actually created, with my own hands, I guess you’d say. So that’s the recognition that means the most, I think.”

Back in 2011, Jason Aldean won the CMA Album of the Year award for My Kinda Party, and he’s nominated in the same category this year for Old Boots, New Dirt.  Jason says in an era when albums may soon be extinct, he’s honored.  “That one’s a big one, especially the way it is now with album sales,” he points out. “I mean, albums are almost kind of a thing of the past. So to get recognized for that at this point, with the way it is now, to me probably means more to me than it did five years ago.”

He adds, “I’m stoked. If we were gonna be up for one, Entertainer’s the one, but if we had to hand pick another one, it would be that, for sure.”

Dan + Shay have landed a nod for Vocal Duo of the Year.  “It’s awesome to be there,” says Shay Mooney. “We’re super-happy and we always get nice suits for it. I guess our label buys them for us… or, we have to pay them back at some point!”  The duo says if they lose, they’d love to trick everybody into thinking they’re sore losers.  “We’re good friends with all the people in the category, so it’d be hilarious to kinda collaborate,” says Dan Smyers. “Like, ‘All right, whoever wins, everyone else just has to get really mad and run out!'” 

We’ll see if any of these acts take home a trophy Wednesday night when the CMA Awards air live on ABC starting at 8 p.m. ET.

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