Carrie, Chris and Keith steal the show at the Country Music Awards

Lawrence Kim
November 15, 2018

The 2018 CMA Awards posted a new all-time low in the overnight ratings, shedding a massive chunk of the show's audience from a year ago.

But watch Bryan, a two-time victor, leap out of his seat and raise an arm to celebrate Urban's win - it's as if he had been leading the 51-year-old's campaign for Entertainer of the Year himself!

"What a night! We were so shocked".

While delivering ABC's highest rating on any night this season with entertainment programming, and its best non-sports performance on the night in just over a year, the music awards franchise's 52 annual ceremony was its lowest rated broadcast ever. The country singer teared up while thanking Kidman, their two daughters and paying tribute to his father who died in December 2015.

"I wish my dad was alive to see this, but I think he's watching over me tonight", Urban said after thanking his family and his people. "I'm shocked, beyond shocked".

"Baby girl, I love you so much", he said. Thank you for supporting Daddy and loving me through all of what I do.

Following the special moment, Luke Bryan took the stage and performed "What Makes You Country" with Luke Combs, Cole Swindell, Lindsay Ell, Chris Janson, Ashley McBryde and Jon Pardi.

Stapleton won three awards: male vocalist of the year, single and song of the year for Broken Halos. "God bless country music". "God bless you all", Urban said.

When he won single of the year - where he won as a performer and producer - Stapleton said he was "thinking about the people in California right now" and he wants to "dedicate this award to them".

Luke Combs, who has the year's most-streamed country music album, sang onstage with a red cup in his hand and won new artist of the year.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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