Entertainment behind the scenes
Will Carrie Underwood steal Kenny Chesney’s crown?
Carrie Underwood has become country music’s biggest star since she exploded onto the scene after winning American Idol in 2005, but so far she’s been passed over as the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year, which has gone to only six women in 39 years.
But this could be the year for Carrie, who has achieved enormous crossover success, winning four Grammy awards already in her short career. She is the lone woman nominated in 2009, facing off against Brad Paisley, George Strait , Keith Urban and – of course – Chesney. (Updates to four Grammys).
And remember, Chesney touched off a country music furor last year when, after winning Entertainer of the Year for the fourth straight time, he criticized the Academy for allowing the award to be chosen by fans voting on the Internet.
“I don’t think its right that they picked the one award that means the most, that all the artists sacrificed the most for, and turned it into a … sweepstakes,” Chesney said at the time.
The suspense ends on Sunday night at the 44th annual Academy of Country Music Awards, which will be handed out at a ceremony hosted by Reba McEntire at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and broadcast live on CBS.
Whether Carrie wins or not, one thing is certain. She has come a long way from Checotah, Oklahoma and her appearance on “American Idol” — where judge Simon Cowell predicted during that season that she would not only win the competition but outsell all previous winners.