Photo: Sanford Myers, Sanford Myers / Invision / AP
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – This is for the girls, during a night in which CMT honored all female stars, from Loretta Lynn to Carrie Underwood and Kelsea Ballerini, at their annual Artists of the Year show on an empowering night of each . other.
Although female artists are still struggling to get airplay, women saluted each other for breaking the barriers in the industry on Wednesday night in Nashville, Tennessee.
Underwood ended the show with a mix of iconic songs from "Stand By Your Man" by Tammy Wynette to "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" From Shania Twain. with the support of two groups of women Runaway June and Maddie and Tae.
In his acceptance speech, Underwood told the women gathered in the room that they were the backbone of the industry.
"You're not here because you're a woman," Underwood said. "You are here because you are very good".
Sissy Spacek, who won an Oscar for her portrayal of Lynn in "Coal Miner & # 39; s Daughter," said Lynn was a pioneer whose honest lyrics set her apart from any other composer in the genre. Lynn, who is 86 years old and just released a new album, "Would not It Be Great," last month, could not attend the show and Spacek accepted the honor on his behalf.
Spacek called her "my sister, my best friend" and she cried a little on stage.
"She's direct and authentic," Spacek told The Associated Press on the red carpet before the show. "She says it's like that, she can say things that you and I can not say, or we're afraid to say."
Throughout the night, the country's artists showed their influences outside the genre with collaborations with soul, gospel, American and more artists.
Kimberly Schlapman and Karen Fairchild of Little Big Town sang "Help me to spend the night" and "I can not make you love me", with the soul icon Gladys Knight. During the show, Fairchild took out his iPhone to list about two dozen women in country music who deserved the radio.
Hillary Scott, of Lady Antebellum, who acted with Tori Kelly and Kirk Franklin, took her 5-year-old daughter to the show, hoping to show her that women can be whatever they want to be.
"He can dream as big and as far as possible," Scott said before the show.
Maren Morris was accompanied by acclaimed singer and songwriter Brandi Carlile in a duet in tribute to Aretha Franklin. Morris and her husband and singer, Ryan Hurd, rejected a repeated claim that country music fans do not want to listen to many women on country radio, which has often been used as an excuse to limit women on the lists. of reproduction and on the radio.
"I do not think it's real," Morris said. "I do not think any woman has said out loud, at least to me:" I do not like listening to women. "I think that's so ridiculous."
Miranda Lambert performed with her group, Pistol Annies, with Angaleena Presley and Ashley Monroe and said that every day she recognizes what other women have done to help her.
"It will not be a day without honoring and encouraging women in this industry and I want to work with them and collaborate because we have to be together for each other," Lambert said.
Kelsea Ballerini and Alison Krauss made a cover of "Ghost in This House". Ballerini told many women that she had looked up and that they had extended their hands to her, including Shania Twain, Reba McEntire and Taylor Swift.
"What I have learned from this is to elevate each other, support each other and share our scenario, no matter how big or small it may be," Ballerini said.
Follow Kristin M. Hall at Twitter.com/kmhall
This story corrects the title of the Loretta Lynn album and the release date.