Fans Make Decision On Final CMT Award Nominees

Shattering all previous records, over two million votes were cast for the final nominees of the 2008 CMT Music Awards, putting country superstars Brad Paisley and Sugarland in the lead with four final nominations.

Carrie Underwood, Kellie Pickler, Kenny Chesney, LeAnn Rimes, Rascal Flatts, Taylor Swift and Trace Adkins share the designation of three nominations each. Music’s hottest father and daughter, Billy Ray Cyrus and Miley Cyrus, will host the 2008 CMT Music Awards. Billy Ray garners his first nomination for the tear jerking “Ready, Set, Don’t Go.”

The 2008 CMT Music Awards continues to be the genre’s only fan-voted awards show and will air live from Nashville’s Curb Event Center at Belmont University on Monday, April 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CMT and CMT.com. Performances will include Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Sugarland, Taylor Swift and Toby Keith, as well as Billy Ray and Miley, with more to be announced.

“Voting for the 2008 CMT Music Awards is at an all-time high, making the awards more competitive than ever,” said Brian Philips, executive vice president and general manager, CMT. “With superstar performances like those from our top nominees Brad Paisley and Sugarland and exciting new categories, this year’s show promises to be a night full of surprises.”

Fans can now vote online at CMT.com through Friday, April 11 to determine the night’s winners. The final nominees for Video of the Year will be announced at the beginning of the show, and fans can vote at CMT.com, as well as via mobile phone, throughout the live broadcast (ET/CT only) to determine the night’s big winner. Log on to CMT.com to view streaming clips of nominated videos.

The final nominees in each of the 2008 CMT Music Awards categories include:

VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video of the year; awarded to the artist (male, female, group/duo or collaboration) and the video director. Final nominees announced during live telecast, with final voting held online at CMT.com during the show.
· Brad Paisley – “Online” (Director: Jason Alexander)
· Carrie Underwood – “Wasted” (Director: Roman White)
· Kenny Chesney – “Don’t Blink” (Director: Shaun Silva)
· LeAnn Rimes – “Nothin’ Better To Do” (Directors: David McClister and LeAnn Rimes)
· Rascal Flatts – “Take Me There” (Director: Shaun Silva)
· Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson – “Because of You” (Director: Roman White)
· Sugarland – “Stay” (Director: Shaun Silva)
· Taylor Swift – “Our Song” (Director: Trey Fanjoy)

MALE VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video by a male artist; awarded to the artist
· Brad Paisley – “Online”
· Keith Urban – “I Told You So”
· Kenny Chesney – “Don’t Blink”
· Toby Keith – “High Maintenance Woman”
· Trace Adkins – “I Got My Game On”

FEMALE VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video by a female artist; awarded to the artist
· Carrie Underwood – “So Small”
· LeAnn Rimes – “Nothin’ Better to Do”
· Martina McBride – “Anyway”
· Miranda Lambert – “Famous in a Small Town”
· Taylor Swift – “Our Song”

GROUP VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video by a group; awarded to the artists
· Bon Jovi – “(You Want To) Make a Memory”
· Little Big Town – “A Little More You”
· Rascal Flatts – “Stand”
· Rascal Flatts – “Take Me There”

DUO VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video by a duo; awarded to the artists
· Big & Rich – “Lost in this Moment”
· Brooks & Dunn – “Proud of the House We Built”
· Montgomery Gentry – “What Do Ya Think About That”
· Sugarland – “Stay”

USA WEEKEND BREAKTHROUGH VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video from an artist's major debut album; awarded to the artist (male, female, or group/duo)
· Bucky Covington – “A Different World”
· Chuck Wicks – “Stealing Cinderella”
· Kellie Pickler – “I Wonder”
· Luke Bryan – “All My Friends Say”

COLLABORATIVE VIDEO OF THE YEAR*
Best video that featured a special collaborative appearance by artists; awarded to the artists (individual, group or duo)
· Bon Jovi feat. LeAnn Rimes – “Till We Ain’t Strangers Anymore”
· Garth Brooks and Huey Lewis – “Workin’ for a Livin’”
· Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson – “Because of You”
· Tim McGraw feat. Faith Hill – “I Need You”

PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR*
Musical performance on a television show, series or variety special on a broadcast or major cable network; awarded to the artist (individual, group or duo)
· Dierks Bentley – “Free and Easy (Down the Road I Go)" from A Capitol Fourth 2007 (PBS)
· Kellie Pickler – “I Wonder” from the 41st Annual CMA Awards (ABC)
· Sugarland – “Stay” from the 2007 CMT MUSIC AWARDS (CMT)
· Tim McGraw – “If You’re Reading This” from the 42nd Annual ACM Awards (CBS)

SUPPORTING CHARACTER OF THE YEAR*
Best supporting character whose guest appearance enhances the video concept; awarded to the special guest
· Christian Kane for Carrie Underwood’s “So Small”
· Jason Alexander for Brad Paisley’s “Online”
· Rodney Carrington for Trace Adkins’ “I Got My Game On”
· Tyler Hilton for Taylor Swift’s “Teardrops On My Guitar”

WIDE OPEN COUNTRY VIDEO OF THE YEAR
Best video from an artist outside the mainstream of country music; awarded to the artist (male, female, group/duo or collaboration)
· Alison Krauss and Robert Plant – “Gone, Gone, Gone (Done Moved On)”
· The Eagles – “How Long”
· Jack Ingram – “Measure of a Man”
· Willie Nelson – “Gravedigger”

TEARJERKER VIDEO OF THE YEAR*
Best video most likely to stir emotion, whether tears of joy or sadness; awarded to the artist
· Billy Ray Cyrus – “Ready, Set, Don’t Go”
· Kellie Pickler – “I Wonder”
· Kenny Chesney – “Don’t Blink”
· Sugarland – “Stay”

COMEDY VIDEO OF THE YEAR*
Best video to convey a song’s humor and wit; awarded to the artist (individual, group or duo)
· Blake Shelton – “The More I Drink”
· Brad Paisley – “Online”
· Toby Keith – “High Maintenance Woman”
· Trace Adkins – “I Got My Game On”

VIDEO DIRECTOR OF THE YEAR
Best video director of the year; awarded to the director for his or her body of work from the past year
· Michael Salomon (award eligible videos include: Toby Keith’s “High Maintenance Woman” and Trace Adkins’ “I Got my Game On”)
· Roman White (award eligible videos include: Carrie Underwood’s “So Small” and Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson’s “Because of You”)
· Shaun Silva (award eligible videos include: Kenny Chesney’s “Don’t Blink” and Rascal Flatts’ “Stand”)
· Trey Fanjoy (award eligible videos include: Bucky Covington’s “A Different World” and Taylor Swift’s “Our Song”)

*indicates new category for 2008

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