Why is This Blake Shelton’s First Country Nomination in 2 Years?
The ACM Nominations were just announced a few hours ago, with that brings Blake Shelton back to the country awards scene. Yes, it has been two years since Blake was nominated for his music at a country award show. Back in 2016 he was nominated and won CMT Social Superstar of the Year, but he hasn't won any awards for his music.
With his release of If I'm Honest back in May 2016, this is quite shocking and confusing. The album debuted at #1, was certified gold, and was the 11th best selling album of 2016. "Came Here to Forget", the first single off of the album, peaked at #1 on Billboard Country Airplay, #2 on Hot Country Songs, and went gold. "A Guy with a Girl" went to #1 on Country Airplay and #3 on Hot Country Songs. "Every Time I Hear That Song" went to #1 on Country Airplay. On the music video end of it "Every Time I Hear That Song" has over 10 million views, "She's Got a Way with Words" has over 18 million, and "Came Here to Forget" has over 30 million views.
This brings us to my question, why hasn't Blake been nominated in 2 years? Since his debut into country music in 2001 he has been nominated 77 times for various country music awards, since 2010 he hasn't gone a year without being nominated. What changed? Blake continued to be nominated at award shows like People's Choice Awards, American Music Awards, ans Teen Choice awards for his music.
The only change for Blake was his relationship status.
Blake's heyday for nominations and wins in country music awards were during his marriage to Miranda Lambert, 2010-2015. While this may be pure coincidence, I am bringing it up for a particular reason. The pair started dating in 2006. During the time of their relationship Blake released the albums Pure BS, Startin' Fires, Red River Blue, Cheers, It's Christmas, Based on a True Story..., and Bringing Back the Sunshine.
A couple of months after Blake and Miranda's divorce, June 2015, rumor had it Blake began dating The Voice co-judge Gwen Stefani. The two made it official in November of 2015 saying they had been dating for a couple of months.
The announcement came on the same day as the 2015 CMA Awards. That year Miranda was nominated for Entertainer of the Year, Female Vocalist (which she won), Music Video of the Year, and Musical Event of the Year. Blake was nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year and Musical Event of the Year, with no wins. Both Miranda and Blake performed that night. Gwen was not seen at the awards, however the then new couple was seen together at after parties.
Did the country music award scene turn its back on Blake after that night?
Yes, it seems a bit like a wacky conspiracy. However it is very odd that for someone like Blake Shelton to go two years without a single music oriented country music nomination. Country radio continued to spin his latest singles and his videos continued to get views.
With his relationship with Gwen, came Blake's emergence into the mainstream music world. While you won't hear his music on pop radio, he has become a bigger part of that world. You can say The Voice has something to do with it, however in the past he was just the super country guy on the show. Now, with Gwen, there's more to it.
Finally, after two years, Blake is back on the awards scene. He was nominated for Single Record of the Year for the ACM Awards for "I'll Name the Dogs". It may be only one nomination, it is still something after a two year drought. Does this mean we will see Blake nominated for more country music awards in 2018? We shall see.
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