2022 ACM Awards: The Complete Recap – Winners, Performances & More

Check out the full recap of the 2022 ACM Awards, complete with all of the winners, performances, and more special moments from the show.

Dolly Parton and Kelsea Ballerini ACM Awards

Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for ACM

The Academy of Country Music Awards had a fresh new look this year. The normally three-hour event that has exclusively aired on CBS for the past 23 years found a new home on Amazon Prime. The show was an hour shorter, had no commercials, and had a whole lot more entertainment. Country music icon, Dolly Parton hosted the event from Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas with the reigning New Male and Female Artists of the Year, Jimmie Allen and Gabby Barrett. Miranda Lambert was the big winner, taking home the prestigious Entertainer of the Year award. Keep reading below for more winners and special performances from the exciting night.

Allen and Barrett, who were both up for Male and Female Artist of the Year kicked off the show; Allen covered Elvis Presley’s “Viva Las Vegas” and Barrett sang Faith Hill’s “Let’s Go to Vegas.” After Eric Church performed a medley of songs over his 16-year career, New Artist of the Year nominee, Walker Hayes sang his new single “AA” as well as his viral smash hit “Fancy Like” as he danced around the entire stadium high-fiving fans and other artists.

The first two awards of the night were presented to Brothers Osborne for Duo of the Year, and Old Dominion for Group of the Year. It was Brothers Osborne’s third and Old Dominion’s fifth straight win for the respective categories. Maren Morris followed this with a performance of her new song, “Circles Around This Town.”

Lainey Wilson came out on top in the stacked Song of the Year category with her number one hit “Things a Man Oughta Know.” Jason Aldean and Carrie Underwood won for Single of the Year for their chart-topper, “If I Didn’t Love You.” Viewers got to see both of these songs live later in the show. Wilson also won the New Female Artist of the Year as well. Next up, two Female Artist of the Year nominees, Ashley McBryde and Carly Pearce took the stage for “Never Wanted Be That Girl”, a standout performance. This collaboration took home the award for Music Event of Year.

Two of the most memorable performances of the show included Thomas Rhett who performed his current single “Slow Down Summer” as fireworks shot off behind him during the final chorus, resembling a scene from Sleeping Beauty’s Castle in Magic Kingdom. Right after, Kelsea Ballerini joined Dolly Parton on stage for a collaboration of Parton’s new song, “Big Dreams and Faded Dreams” from her new “Run, Rose, Run” album. 

One of the biggest surprise wins of the night was Morgan Wallen’s Dangerous winning the award for Album of the Year. Statistically, it makes a lot of sense, given it was the best-selling album across all genres in 2021 with 3.2 million units sold. Wallen humbly thanked his team, fans, and industry for showing him grace over the past year and dedicated the win to his son.

This was followed by 35-straight minutes of performances by artists such as Gabby Barrett, Parker McCollum, Lainey Wilson, Jason Aldean and Carrie Underwood, Kane Brown, Luke Bryan and Jordan Davis. Our favorite performances in this batch included Brother Osborne who gave an exciting performance of their song “Skeletons,” where their glasses, hats, guitars, and matching black and white jumpsuits lit the room neon as the lights went down. Breland had Thomas Rhett and a Baptist choir join him on stage for his fun, new song “Praise the Lord.”

After Lady A performed “What a Song Can Do,” the Male and Female Artist of the Year were awarded to Chris Stapleton and Carly Pearce. Pearce and Stapleton also won this award at last year’s CMAs as well. Top-nominated artist, Chris Young performed two songs after these awards, “Raised On Country” and his collaboration with Mitchell Tenpenny, “At The End of A Bar.”

The show concluded with the announcement of the most prestigious owner of the night, Entertainer of the Year. Miranda Lambert took home the award and although she leads the pack with 29 total ACM awards throughout her career, she has never won the Entertainer of the Year. She is currently in London on tour, but she graciously accepted her award remotely.

Other awards not aired included New Male Artist of the Year to Parker McCollum, Video of the Year to Lambert and Elle King for “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home),” and Songwriter of the Year to Michael Hardy. Other performers include Chris Stapleton, Jimmie Allen, Parmalee with Blanco Brown and Brooke Eden, Brittney Spencer, and Kelly Clarkson. The pre-show included performances by Tenille Townes and Kat & Alex.

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