ACM Awards 2012 winners: Taylor Swift wins top honor at Academy of Country Music Awards, Lionel Richie performs

ssorich@ledger-enquirer.comApril 1, 2012 

The 2012 Academy of Country Music Awards didn't have any shocking moments or surprises, but we did get a wedding and Lionel Richie. And Carrot Top.

Taylor Swift won the fan-voted entertainer of the year award at the ceremony, which was held Sunday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, Scotty McCreery and Lady Antebellum were among the other winners. Find a full list of winners here.

Here's a full recap of Sunday's ceremony, which aired on CBS.

***

8 p.m. - Carrie Underwood opens the show with her new single, "Good Girl." The performance isn't too heavy on special effects, but I'm digging this song. And as usual, Carrie Underwood looks great.

8:04 - Hosts Reba McEntire and Blake Shelton take the stage. The opening jokes are pretty good, though Blake's Tim Tebow joke kind of falls flat. He says the Broncos were so desperate to win a Super Bowl that "they were actually willing to sacrifice a virgin." I also like Blake's joke about Taylor Swift's perfume. He says it should be called "I Can't Believe I Smell This Good!" His imitation of Taylor's shocked face is spot-on.

8:10 - Chris Young performs "Save Water, Drink Beer." If I didn't have to work early Monday morning, I'd happily oblige. But my beverage of choice tonight is lemonade. Good song, though.

8:13 - Time to move the cameras to Mandalay Bay for a performance by Zac Brown Band. They sing "Keep Me In Mind."

8:18 - The Band Perry performs "Postcard From Paris." I like this song 50 million times better than "If I Die Young."

8:26 - LL Cool J is in the house! Yes, really. Is there any awards show he DOESN'T attend?!?

8:28 - Keith Urban sings "For You" from "Act of Valor." Thank you, military!

8:30 - So, um, are we going to give out any awards tonight?

8:32 - Actually, yes. Song of the Year is "Crazy Girl" by Eli Young Band.

8:42 - Blake Shelton performs "Drink On It."

8:45 - Album of the Year goes to Miranda Lambert for "Four the Record."

8:48 - Let's go back to Mandalay Bay. Hunter Hayes sings "Storm Warning." Can I call him country music's Justin Bieber? Yes? No? After his performance, he tells us that the ACM Awards is trying to raise awareness of child hunger. He wrote a special song about child hunger. Which brings us to our next performance.

8:50 - Little Big Town combines Hunter's song with "Imagine." Very powerful.

8:58 - Jason Aldean performs "Fly Over States."

9:02 - KISS is on stage! Wow. They present Vocal Group of the Year to Lady Antebellum. Sadly, they do not mention their recent Columbus Civic Center concert while accepting the award.

9:03 - Back to Mandalay Bay...Brantley Gilbert performs "Country Must Be Country Wide."

9:07 - Eric Church performs "Springsteen."

9:16 - Well hello, LeAnn Rimes. Good to see you again.

9:17 - Single Record of the Year goes to "Don't You Wanna Stay" by Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson.

9:19 - Blake Shelton says he was once pretty crazy -- "crazier than, like, a JetBlue pilot." Too soon? You decide.

9:20 - Lady Antebellum performs "Dancin' Away With My Heart."

9:29 - Back at Mandalay Bay...Scotty McCreery performs "Water Tower Town."

9:31 - Brad Paisley performs "Camouflage."

9:34 - New Artist of the Year is Scotty McCreery. Remember, this is a fan-voted category.

9:41 - Earl Scruggs tribute! The audience gives a standing ovation in his memory. Then, the musicians from Rascal Flatts perform "Banjo" -- with special guest Steve Martin. Yes, Steve looks entirely random on stage and I love it. At least Steve doesn't submit to the lure of the sparkly shirts that often define a Rascal Flatts performance.

9:46 - Blake Shelton introduces Toby Keith's performance of "Red Solo Cup." He says the song is the biggest surprise hit since Osama bin Laden heard a knock on the door and said, "Who is it? Come in." Again...too soon?

9:47 - Toby Keith gives us a very bizarre, yet fun, performance of "Red Solo Cup." He walks through the audience while singing the song. Carrot Top is involved -- and Wayne Newton, I think.

9:49 - Why is Marc Anthony a presenter at this show?!? Oh, he's appearing on that upcoming Lionel Richie country music special.

9:50 - Sara Evans sings "My Heart Can't Tell You No." I love Sara Evans. She's one of my favorite interviews EVER.

10:02 - Kenny Chesney! Tim McGraw! Together on one stage! They perform "Whatever Makes You Feel Like a Rock Star." At least I think that's the official song title.

10:04 - Ashton Kutcher is on stage...in full western wear. Hmm. He sings a few verses of George Strait's "Cross My Heart." Um, don't quit your day job. He presents Female Vocalist of the Year to Miranda Lambert.

10:12 - Blake Shelton introduces a performance by Miranda Lambert and calls her "the most important person in my life." I swoon.

10:13 - Miranda Lambert sings "Over You." I'm a fan of this song. Wish I could say the same about Miranda's outfit, which seems to involve a corset, lace and feathers.

10:16 - Reba initially calls the No. 1 movie in America "The Hunger Game." Note the absence of a certain plural word.

10:17 - Back at Mandalay Bay...Liam Hemsworth introduces a Zac Brown Band performance. They sing "Whiskey's Gone." Brad Paisley joins them on stage and even wears the standard Zac Brown Band beanie.

10:20 - Bono is in the house! Well, kind of. In a pre-taped message, he introduces a performance by Dierks Bentley.

10:21 - Dierks Bentley sings "Home." One of the stronger performances of the night.

10:31 - And now...a wedding. Because this is totally related to country music. OK, the love story is pretty sweet. The couple each had previous significant others who passed away. They found love again. So, the wedding actually happens on stage. Martina McBride and Pat Monahan sing "Marry Me" during the ceremony. Hey, I'm all for true love...but this is slightly random.

10:37 - Thompson Square apparently won Vocal Duo of the Year.

10:44 - Luke Bryan sings "I Don't Want This Night to End."

10:48 - Hello, Taylor Swift. She presents Male Vocalist of the Year to Blake Shelton.

10:55 - Entertainer of the Year goes to Taylor Swift. She gives a shout-out to Kevin McGuire, the teenage cancer patient who was supposed to be her date for the ACMs. He was hospitalized and couldn't attend the show.

10:59 - The show ends with a country music legend...Lionel Richie. Hey, apparently he's now a fixture at country music awards shows. He and Blake Shelton duet on "You Are."

With that, we're done. What did you think?

Ledger-Enquirer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service