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Our 2017 ACM Awards Predictions — Make Yours!

acm awards predictions
Jason Merritt / Frazer Harrison / David Becker, Getty Images

The 2017 ACM Awards are just days away, and it’s time once again this year for the staff of Taste of Country and our readers to square off and try to top each other in predicting the winners in all of the evening’s biggest categories.

Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley are returning to co-host the ACM Awards in 2017. Keith Urban leads nominations with seven, while Maren Morris and Miranda Lambert each landed six nominations. Tim McGraw, Florida Georgia Line and more artists are among those with multiple nominations, but in the end, only one artist gets to take home the ACM Award in each of the categories, leading up to the night’s biggest award, Entertainer of the Year.

Take a look at our 2017 ACM Awards predictions below, and then vote to make yours! Make sure you stop back by on Monday (April 3) to see who picked more accurately.

Entertainer of the Year

Our Pick: Keith Urban

It’s been quite a few years since we’ve seen Keith Urban nominated in the night’s biggest category at the ACM Awards, but given the overwhelming success of Ripcord and its singles — especially “Blue Ain’t Your Color” — 2017 looks like the year we’ll see the veteran take home Entertainer of the Year.

Male Vocalist of the Year

Our Pick: Thomas Rhett

It would be easy to predict Chris Stapleton for this category, but look at the year Rhett has had. He’s blossomed into a full-blown superstar, and he’s never sounded better than he does on new songs like “Star of the Show.” We’re predicting this is his year for Male Vocalist of the Year in the ACM Awards.

Female Vocalist of the Year

Our Pick: Maren Morris

Maren Morris was practically unknown a year ago, but everyone in Nashville who predicted big things for her was right. “My Church” marked the debut of one of the freshest artists in country music, and Morris has dominated the stage with several high-profile TV performances since then, showing off the live strength of her voice. It’s unusual for a newcomer to win an award as big as Female Vocalist, but ToC predicts Morris will do just that at the 2017 ACM Awards.

Vocal Duo of the Year

Our Pick: Florida Georgia Line

Brothers Osborne have had a great year, but for FGL, this will go down as the year they finally proved their naysayers wrong once and for all. The superstar demonstrated that there is far more to them than bro-country with their Dig Your Roots album, and country music is better off for their mature new sound. It would be surprising if any other artist won Vocal Duo of the Year at the 2017 ACM Awards.

Vocal Group of the Year

Our Pick: Little Big Town

Little Big Town are quite simply the strongest vocal group in country music right now, and with the wind from “Better Man” still at their backs, it would be hard to imagine any other group taking home Vocal Group of the Year in 2017.

Album of the Year

Our Pick: Miranda Lambert, The Weight of These Wings

Album of the Year is a really tough category this year, but Miranda Lambert’s most recent album is such a singular effort that it will cut through the pack. The Weight of These Wings is an ambitious double album that captures all of the highs and lows of Lambert’s divorce and its aftermath, and it sees Lambert really shaking up her writing and capturing a degree of nuance that is far beyond anything else she’s done in her career.

Single Record of the Year

Our Pick: Keith Urban, “Blue Ain’t Your Color”

2017 has been a ridiculously great year for singles, too, but Keith Urban’s “Blue Ain’t Your Color” just has that something special. Who could’ve guessed that you could modernize a standard doo-wop style chord progression and make it into one of the biggest hits of a long superstar-level career? Urban did just that with the track, which also features one of his strongest vocal performances.

Video of the Year

Our Pick: Various Artists, “Forever Country”

Despite very strong efforts from Chris Stapleton and Tim McGraw, it’s not hard to predict that “Forever Country” will take home Video of the Year in the 2017 ACM Awards. With an irresistible mix of guest appearances from classic acts and today’s hottest country stars, the video is one of the biggest things we’ve seen in the genre in years.

Song of the Year

Our Pick: “Humble and Kind,” Tim McGraw (Songwriter Lori McKenna)

Tim McGraw scored one of the most important songs of his career with “Humble and Kind,” and he’s already seen quite a bit of awards success with it, too. It’s not hard to predict that he and Lori McKenna will stand in the winner’s circle once again at the 2017 ACM Awards for her simple, heartfelt homage to the universal values of humility and kindness, which he brought to life so profoundly.

Vocal Event of the Year

Our Pick: Various Artists, “Forever Country”

If there was such a category as Vocal Event of All Time, “Forever Country” would probably qualify. But since there’s not, ToC predicts that it will win Vocal Event of the Year at the 2017 ACM Awards.

Songwriter of the Year

Our Pick: Lori McKenna

Lori McKenna sat down to write a simple song to express her hopes for her children, but she ended up capturing lightning in a bottle with “Humble and Kind.” The song poignantly expresses a sentiment that is so universal that it not only became a hit song, it inspired a movement. That makes her ToC’s pick for Songwriter of the Year in the 2017 ACM Awards.

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