Garth Brooks to Honor Randy Travis at 2021 CMT Artist of the Year Awards

Garth Brooks will honor friend and country legend Randy Travis at the CMT Artist of the Year celebration airing on Wednesday, CMT confirmed. During the ceremony, Brooks will present Travis with the highly-coveted Artist of a Lifetime award, which honors artists who have made massive impacts on country music. Travis will become the sixth legend to receive the CMT Artist of a Lifetime award, joining the ranks of  Merle Haggard, Kenny Rogers, Shania Twain, Loretta Lynn, and Reba McEntire.

"To think you receive a Lifetime Achievement award for sharing your heart with the world through music is really beyond words of gratitude," Travis said when it was announced last month that he would receive the honor. "CMT has been so good to me throughout my career and I'm happy they believe I gave something in return. I'm blessed and most thankful."

Travis' impact on country music is undeniable. After releasing his debut album Storms of Life in 1986, Travis went on to become one of the biggest multi-genre record sellers of all time. Throughout his storied career, he has taken home seven Grammy Awards, 11 Academy of Country Music statuettes, 10 American Music Awards, two People's Choice awards, seven Music City News awards, eight Dove Awards from the Gospel Music Association and five Country Music Association honors. In 2016, he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

"His historic career encompassing multiple genres illuminates his extraordinary talent, determination, and lasting influence on country music and beyond," Leslie Fram, Senior Vice President, Music & Talent, CMT, said. "Randy's unmistakable, traditional country sound has shaped multiple generations and we're honored to celebrate this deserved lifetime honor with him."

Travis will not be the only artist honored during this year's event, which will return to its original format after adapting last year to honor some of the most vital and inspirational Americans on the frontlines of the pandemic. Mickey Guyton will be honored with CMT's Breakout Artist of the Year award, the Grammy-nominated singer joining the ranks of previous honorees Chris Stapleton, Kelsea Ballerini, and Ashley McBryde. Other Artists of the Year honorees to be honored include Stapleton, Ballerini, Gabby Barrett, Kane Brown, and Luke Combs.

The 90-minute special will feature several performances, including performances from the five 2021 CMT Artist of the Year honorees as well as Boyz II Men, Jonas Brothers, Kevin Olusola of Pentatonix, Walker Hayes, and Yola. CMT's Artists of the Year broadcast will air CMT live from Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Center on Wednesday, Oct. 13 at 9 p.m. ET.