2019 CMA Awards: Billy Ray Cyrus Celebrates First Nomination in 27 Years With 'Old Town Road'

It's been 27 years since Billy Ray Cyrus received a CMA Award nomination, ever since 1992, when he [...]

It's been 27 years since Billy Ray Cyrus received a CMA Award nomination, ever since 1992, when he won the trophy for Single of the Year, for his mega-hit "Achy Breaky Heart." The 58-year-old is nominated this year for Musical Event of the Year, for his collaboration with Lil Nas X on "Old Town Road." Cyrus received the news shortly after winning the Song of the Year, also for "Old Town Road," at the 2019 MTV Video Music Awards.

"It's crazy," Cyrus said in a statement. "It's like the twilight zone of my life. I flew home from New York, put my Moonmen on the shelf and laid down for a solid 8 hours. I wake up and learn I'm nominated in the Country Music Association's Musical Event of the Year on a song eliminated by Billboard critics for not 'embracing enough elements of today's country music.'"

Cyrus likely never imagined when he signed on to do a version of "Old Town Road" with Lil Nas X that the song would become such a cultural phenomenon, staying at the top of multiple charts for a record-breaking 19 weeks, but he isn't taking credit for the song's success.

"It's good to be reminded where all goodness comes from, the almighty God," Cyrus said when accepting his VMA Award. "So first of all I'd like to thank the almighty God, for this moment. I'd like to thank you, the fans. This is your song. You all took this song, and made it your own. So thank you, each and every one of you ... Thank you all so much. God bless you. This is your song."

The inclusion of "Old Town Road" in the CMA Awards list of nominees is surprising, only because country radio largely banned the song for being too far out of the country music genre. But Cyrus sees the song as a unique way to unite different genres.

"This song has been a uniter not a divider," Cyrus commented. "I'm giving God the glory now for allowing me the gift to be part of such a special song. It's a unique moment in time where people from all over the world and all walks of life find they have more in common than they do different. It's a moment we've all shared and I'm grateful for it."

The 2019 CMA Awards will air live from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, Nov. 13, at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Photo Credit: Getty images / Dimitrios Kambouris