Jason Aldean was inexplicably omitted from any CMA Awards nominations this year, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have opinions about who should walk away with the Entertainer of the Year trophy. The “Try That in a Small Town” singer says that it’s Morgan Wallen, who is nominated in the category along with Carrie Underwood, Luke Combs, Chris Stapleton and Lainey Wilson, who should walk away with the night’s highest honor.
“I know who I think it should be,” Aldean tells Taste of Country. “It doesn’t get any hotter than Morgan has been, and I feel like he’s due.”
Wallen released his 36-track One Thing At A Time album, which spent more than 11 consecutive week on the Billboard 200 chart, earlier this year, and headlined his massive, sold-out One Night At A Time Tour, which was already extended into 2024.
“I don’t know how you can not vote for the guy,” Aldean says. “What more do you want him to do to get it? … So I think he should win it. Whether or not he will, who knows,”
Aldean just released Highway Desperado, his eleventh studio album. Since then, Aldean has had 28 chart-topping singles, filled massive arenas to capacity, and sold millions of albums, all part of Aldean achieving more than he once ever dreamed possible.
“I think longevity, really,” Aldean said on FOX & Friends, when asked what his proudest accomplishment has been so far. “The fact that my first single came out in 2005, and we didn’t have social media. We didn’t have all these ways to get your career up and running like these guys do now. It’s like we had to go out and do it grassroots style. We had to play every little bar, every little festival, every little everything to build it to this, and we were able to do that, and and been able to sustain it for this long and still coming out this many years later selling out tours.
“That’s been a pretty cool thing to watch,” he adds. “And every year we’re like, ‘Is this it? Is this the end of it? Maybe.’ And then every year we have another tour that blows out and people come and check it out. So it’s been great.”
Aldean, like Wallen, hasn’t been immune to controversy in recent years, but he isn’t about to let that affect him or the kind of music he makes.
“I think as a new artist, you’re told not to stir the pot,” Aldean said on Country Countdown USA. “I’m older now, and I’m not going to be quiet. I think that may have rubbed people the wrong way. On the flip side, I feel like I’ve gotten new fans. So I’m at a point in my career where I’m not going to be intimidated. I don’t feel what I’m saying is wrong, so I’m not going to feel guilty about it.”
Luke Bryan will co-host the 2023 CMA Awards ceremony with Peyton Manning. The ceremony will air live from Nashville on Wednesday, November 8, at 8:00 PM ET on ABC. More information can be found at CMAAwards.com.