“Looking back, we’ve had so many bits and jokes and things like that, but I think my favorite parts of the whole thing are the things that that we get to be involved in that people don’t see," Underwood shares. "Looking back, especially on the 50th Anniversary – that was so amazing being part of that open and kind of having that rehearsal band with my band and Brad’s band and all these legendary artists, seeing them all come together and work together.
"They were swapping stories and laughing with each other because there were so many of them that haven’t seen each other in forever either so, it was just an amazing moment to be a part of," she continues. "I’d say that’s way high up there on my list of favorite moments for the CMAs.”
Underwood and Paisley both have busy careers, with Underwood scheduled to release Cry Pretty just two months before the CMA Awards. But hosting the CMA Awards together gives the two singers, who are friends in music and in real life, a chance to spend time together.
“It’s hard to pick one thing that I enjoy about hosting the CMA Awards," Underwood says. "Our planning time is, it’s a lot of work and it can be stressful, but it’s also fun too getting in the room with Brad and the writers. We’re just kind of swapping ideas – some good, some bad. [laughs] But we’re all working together to put on the show, and we want to be respectful and we want to celebrate country music; that’s what we’re there for. But I don’t know if I could pick one moment that’s my all-time favorite moment ever. It’s all good.”
Luke Bryan, Dan + Shay and Sugarland will announce the nominees on Tuesday, Aug. 28, live from Luke’s 32 Bridge Food + Drink, his restaurant and bar on Lower Broadway in downtown Nashville. The nominees will be announced on Good Morning America, and on GoodMorningAmerica.com, as well as on Facebook live and their YouTube channel.
Underwood has won six CMA Awards trophies so far, including four times for Female Vocalist of the Year, the Horizon Award in 2006, and Single of the Year, for "Before He Cheats." She's been nominated a total of 28 times.
The CMA Awards will air live from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, November 14, at 8:00 PM ET on ABC.
Photo Credit: Getty images/Rick Diamond