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"I'd like to thank Jesse James and Tiger Woods for inspiring us all."
——Reba McEntire
LADY ANTEBELLUM, CARRIE UNDERWOOD, MIRANDA LAMBERT CLEAN UP AT ACM AWARDS
Taylor Swift Shut Out for the First Time Since Breakthrough; Galante Goes Out With a Bang

Host Reba McEntire captured the zeitgeist and tied it up in a red bow in her opening monologue at Sunday night’s ACM Awards, held this year in Vegas, baby. "We've had a great year in country music," she noted. "Lots of songs about cowboy Casanovas, white liars and two-timin' men—and I'd like to thank Jesse James and Tiger Woods for inspiring us all."

But what country music fans will remember about the 45th edition of the show are Carrie Underwood, who won her second straight Entertainer of the Year award, and Lady Antebellum, who scored a hat trick with wins for Vocal Group, Song of the Year and Single of the Year. Lady A, who had seven noms, ended the seven-year run of Rascal Flatts in the Vocal Group category.

Underwood, who beat out Taylor Swift (shut out for the first time since here emergence), Kenny Chesney, the Zac Brown Band, Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, George Strait and Keith Urban, also earned the Triple Crown Award—a special trophy commemorating her past wins as Top New Artist, Top Female Vocalist and Entertainer.

Miranda Lambert had a rather good night herself, snagging Album of the Year for Revolution, Female Vocalist and Video of the Year for “White Liar.” Brad Paisley got Male Vocalist, while the soon-to-divorce Brooks & Dunn took home the award for Top Vocal Duo.

Luke Bryan nabbed Top New Artist on the basis of his hit “Do I,” cowritten with Lady A’s Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood.

It was a night to savor for Sony Music Nashville head Joe Galante, who will ride out of Music City with eight more notches in his gun belt. Underwood, Lambert, Paisley and Brooks & Dunn have all conducted their entire careers under Joe’s watch.  

"I think I just got makeup all over Brad Paisley," said Underwood as accepted her trophy, before giving credit to the A&R man in the sky: "Thank you, God; praise the Lord."

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