The ACM Awards are supposed to honor artists who have worked hard and had success throughout the year, a benchmark of their career accomplishments. While the Academy of Country Music gets it right a lot, they have missed the mark more than once, which could explain how Carrie Underwood and Jason Aldean both got left out this year. Keep reading to find out which artists have had massive success, yet have, at least so far, been snubbed by the Academy of Country Music.
1. Dustin Lynch
Dustin Lynch has somehow never, ever been nominated for an ACM Award, or a CMA Award, for that matter. It’s frankly inexplicable, and without excuse. Lynch has had far more success than a lot of artists with multiple nominations. In the last year few years, he has released hit albums, and had numerous No. 1 hits, including “Good Girl” and “Small Town Boy.” More recently, he released the No. 1, platinum-selling single, “Ridin’ Roads,” from his 2020 Tullahoma record.
2. Justin Moore
Justin Moore actually did receive one ACM Awards nomination — in 2013. That year, Moore won the ACM Award for New Artist of the Year. While the honor was well-deserved, it fails to take into account all of the success Moore has had since then, including No. 1 songs like “You Look Like I Need a Drink,” “Why We Drink,” and of course, “The Ones That Didn’t Make It Back Home.”
3. Jake Owen
Like Moore, Jake Owen also won one ACM Award, for Top New Male Vocalist — in 2008. Owen has been nominated five times: once in 2007, three times in 2008, and then not again until 2018, when he was nominated for “Single of the Year,” for “Down to the Honkytonk.” Within the decade that Owen was ignored, he released four albums, and had six No. 1 singles, including “The One That Got Away” and “American Country Love Song.” Incidentally, he has also only been nominated for a CMA Award three times, but never won a CMA Award either.
4. Maddie & Tae
Maddie & Tae have been nominated eight times, yet have never walked away with an ACM Award. Their omission could be due to the fact that every year they have been nominated for Duo of the Year, a category that also includes Dan + Shay and Florida Georgia Line. But they have also put out great music, like “Die of a Broken Heart,” which for sure could have earned them at least one nod in another category, and maybe more.
5. Scotty McCreery
2011 was the last time Scotty McCreery heard his name in the list of nominees. That year, fresh off of his American Idol win, McCreery won New Artist of the Year. Since then, McCreery released See You Tonight and Seasons Change, and had three consecutive No. 1 hits, with “Five More Minutes,” “This Is It” and “In Between.”
6. Sam Hunt
Sam Hunt won the ACM Award in 2017 for Single of the Year, for his record-breaking “Body Like a Back Road,” but hasn’t received any nominations since then. Hunt released the platinum-selling Southside in 2020, which included not only “Body Like a Back Road,” but also “Kinfolks” and “Hard to Forget.”
7. Kip Moore
Kip Moore has only received one nomination, for New Artist of the Year, in 2013. In the eight years after his one nomination, Moore released three more albums, including his recent Wild World in 2020, and released numerous singles, including “Running For You” and “Last Shot.”
8. Michael Ray
Michael Ray received one nod, in 2018, for New Male Artist of the Year. While his career is, in many ways, just getting started, he has released two hit singles, and the critically-acclaimed Amos album. It might not be quite his time yet, but another New Artist nod at least would have certainly been justified.
9. Rascal Flatts
The last time Rascal Flatts won an ACM Award was in 2016. That year the trio won for their part in “Forever Country,” which won Vocal Event of the Year. Not since 2008 has Rascal Flatts won an ACM Award, aside from the Jim Reeves International Award, an industry honor they received in 2013. 2008 was the last year Rascal Flatts won in the Vocal Group category, a category they haven’t even been nominated in since 2016, even though they have continued to be one of the hardest-working acts in country music.
10. Chris Young
Chris Young has been nominated a whopping — wait for it — 15 times, and has yet to win a trophy. Worse, his last nomination was in 2017, for Male Vocalist of the Year, even though he has sold out tours and had hit singles since then. While he, unfortunately, didn’t get nominated this year, at least he does get to perform during the show’s live broadcast.