This is the 10th time that more than one female-inclusive act has been nominated for the year’s entertainment.
Miranda Lambert and Carrie Underwood are both nominated for Entertainment of the Year in the newly announced CMA Awards nominations. How rare is it to have two female soloists nominated in the same year? Let’s put it this way: Jimmy Carter was president and Company of three The last time this happened was the top TV sitcom. This was back in 1979, when the nominees included Crystal Gayle and Barbara Mandrell.
Broadening the scope to include not only female soloists but groups or duets, this is the 10th time that more than one female-inclusive act has been nominated for Entertainment of the Year.
Here is the complete list, working backwards chronologically.
2020 Lambert and Underwood are both nominated. This is Lambert’s fourth nomination in the category; Third of Underwood. Nor has yet won.
2010: Lambert and Lady A (as the mixed-gender trio is now known) were both nominated. Brad Paisley wins. This was Lambert’s first nomination in the category; The only one for Lady A, which features Hillary Scott.
2000: Both Faith Hill and The Chicks (as the female trio is now known) were nominated. Chicks went on to win, consisting of Natki Main and sisters Marty Erwin Maguire and Emily Stryer. This was Hill’s only nomination in this category; Is the second of three in a row.
1999: Shania Twain and The Chick were both nominated. Twain won. This was Twain’s only nomination in this category; Girls first.
1986, 1987, 1988: Reba McEntire and The Judds were both nominated for three years – the longest continuous stretch where more than one woman was nominated. McEntire won in 1986. Hank Williams Jr. won the next two years. The judges included mother Naomi and daughter Viniona. McEntire was first named to the category in 1985. He was nominated in 10 of 11 years until 1985–95. (She missed the cut in 1990, when Kathy Matta was the only female candidate.) These were just three nominations in the category.
1979: Both Gayle and Mandrell were nominated. Willie Nelson wins. This was Gayle’s second nomination in a row in this category; Mandrell’s first six. Mandre is the only woman in CMA history to have been nominated in this category in six years. (As noted above, McIntire could have been nominated for 11 years, but his streak was interrupted at his midpoint.)
1978: Gayle and Dolly Parton were both nominated. Parton won. This was Parton’s third consecutive nomination in this category; Gayle’s first. Inexplicably, Parton has not been named Entertainer of the Year since winning in 1978. (I ask you: Who has been more entertaining in the last 42 years?)
1974: Loretta Lynn and Olivia Newton-John were both nominated. Charlie Rich won. It was Lynn’s fourth of five consecutive nominations in this category, Newton-John’s only. (Many may not even remember that Newton-John was a country / pop crossover star in the mid-’70s. After the breakthrough success. ‘ Grease In 1978, she pivoted in a pure pop style. Judging later, Taylor Swift will make a similar musical change.)