Scotty McCreery picked up another fan-voted accolade last night when he was named New Artist of the Year at the 47th Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas."I’ve got to thank the fans — you guys are incredible!” said the 18-year-old Garner High School senior, who was named the winner of the 10th season of “American Idol” less than a year ago. Scotty also thanked the country music community and Jesus.
Scotty attended the three-hour ceremony, broadcast live on CBS, with his parents, Mike and Judy McCreery of Garner, and his sister, Ashley, a Charlotte college student.
He won the honor over fellow newcomers Hunter Hayes and Brantley Gilbert. Fans cast votes for their favorites over the past two weeks. Each of the three performed a snippet of a song from the Mandalay Bay resort, at a fan bash just down the street from the awards at the MGM Grand. In Scotty’s case, he apparently rushed back to the MGM from Mandalay just in time to hear his name called.
It’s the second time in a few months that Scotty’s fans have propelled him to such an honor. In December, he was named top new artist at another country awards show, the American County Awards.
The latest award comes amid a busy time for Scotty. He returned to “Idol” last week to perform his new single, “Water Tower Town,” a loving ode to a town much like Garner.
A photo of the Garner water tower was behind Scotty when he sang his shortened version of the song on Sunday’s awards. Scotty then got to introduce his tour mate, Brad Paisley. Scotty is expected to go back on the road with Paisley this summer and fall.
The rest of the night's awards ranged from the good (always nice to see Miranda Lambert recognized) to the bizarre (Toby Keith performing the infectious "Red Solo Cup" with Carrot Top? What the what?)
And CBS didn't miss any opportunity to promote itself. I definitely don't think the country music world (or anyone else) really needed to hear "Two and a Half Men" star Ashton Kutcher sing.