NASHVILLE — Martina McBride has five Country Music Association Awards, but nothing beats the first time she picked up a CMA trophy.
“It was 1999, and it was just like the whole night I felt like I was walking on air. It was just magic,” said McBride of winning female vocalist of the year. “We had been nominated several times before, so to finally hear your name called, it was like the whole world went into slow motion.”
The CMA Awards will air live on ABC from Nashville at 8 p.m. Wednesday, hosted by Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood.
McBride is nominated again for female vocalist.
Winning a CMA award also holds special memories for Joe Nichols. He won the new artist of the year category in 2003, when it was called the Horizon Award.
“I got to perform that night in front of George Strait, Hank [Williams] Jr., and all my heroes. I was scared to death ... but it was a fun night,” he said, “and I got to take home an award that I never thought I’d win.”
Alan Jackson is the second most-nominated artist in CMA history. His run began in 1990, and this year’s nod for musical event of the year with the Zac Brown Band gives him a total of 80 nominations. It puts him behind George Strait with 81.
Jackson has won a total of 16 CMA Awards.
“It ain’t like the first one, but it still, it’s just overwhelming to me anyway to even think about that many,” said Jackson. “They’re scattered all over our house. I walk around still, I mean, everything in my career is still hard for me to believe.”