The CMT Music Awards made the perfect of the last-minute absence of co-host Kelsea Ballerini, who examined optimistic for COVID-19 days earlier than Monday’s present.
Ballerini’s co-host, actor Anthony Mackie, took the stage alone on the Municipal Auditorium in Nashville after opening performances on the stay CBS telecast of the only “Wild Hearts” by Keith City and the duet “By no means Say By no means” by Cole Swindell and Lainey Wilson.
“I do know all of you had been trying ahead to seeing Kelsea Ballerini out right here tonight on the stage, however she’s a little bit beneath the climate,” the “Avengers” actor Mackie mentioned. “However similar to the NFL has backup QBs, right here on the CMA Awards, we now have backup KBs.”
He then introduced out his substitute “KB,” singer Kane Brown, who was summoned to assist with internet hosting duties. Brown, who has twice hosted the present earlier than, is the evening’s largest nominee.
Singers Thomas Rhett and Martina McBride each stood up within the viewers and volunteered to assist internet hosting, however had been rebuffed.
Then Ballerini appeared on an enormous display screen from dwelling, decked out in a full awards-show costume in her front room.
“That is my regular Monday evening, in full glam, with lighting I arrange myself, and a distant truck exterior,” Ballerini mentioned. “I might a lot moderately be there with you, however I will likely be popping in all evening lengthy.”
Later within the present, Ballerini carried out from her yard, singing her new single “Heartfirst” alone with a white guitar and a mint-green glowing mini-dress, one in all many costume adjustments she made all through the evening.
Photos of her band had been projected on to a curtain hung behind her.
The Judds made their first main awards present efficiency in over twenty years, with 76-year-old Naomi and her 57-year-old daughter Wynonna singing their signature 1990 traditional “Love Can Construct a Bridge.”
They had been joined by a gospel choir within the efficiency that was pre-recorded exterior the Nation Music Corridor of Fame.
The night’s first award on the fan-voted present that honors the perfect in nation music movies went to Jason Aldean and Carrie Underwood, who received collaborative video of the yr for his or her duet “If I Didn’t Love You.”
“This track has been so unbelievable this yr the way you guys the followers have responded to it,” Aldean mentioned.
It was a file twenty fourth CMT award for Underwood.
“Thanks followers. Thanks CMT, woo!” Underwood shouted.
Underwood sang her track “Ghost Story” in a pre-taped efficiency from her Las Vegas residency, withdrawing mid-song Cirque du Soleil-style on a material swing hung from the ceiling.
Aldean and Brian Adams carried out Adams’ Nineteen Eighties hit “Heaven.”
Miranda Lambert later received her eighth CMT award, for feminine video of the yr, for “If I Was a Cowboy.”
“I’m so completely satisfied to be part of the ladies of nation music at present,” Lambert mentioned.
The internet hosting change-up wasn’t the one hiccup the present confronted: lightning compelled the closure of the CMT’s pink carpet earlier than most stars arrived to have their images taken and be interviewed.
And rain fell on a part of an out of doors stage arrange for some performances, although the artists principally embraced it. Swindell and Wilson stepped beneath it and soaked themselves.
The present additionally featured performances by Little Massive City, Previous Dominion, Mickey Guyton and Black Pumas and Maren Morris and Ryan Hurd.