NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) â€” Taylor Swift and Kacey Musgraves are the top nominees for the Country Music Association Awards with six apiece.
Swift will be going for her third entertainer of the year award and also was nominated for album and female vocalist of the year for the Nov. 6 awards in Nashville, Tenn. Newcomer Musgraves, an East Texas native, also is up for awards in the album and female vocalist categories after nominations were announced Tuesday by Sheryl Crow and Florida Georgia Line.
Blake Shelton is next with five nominations. His wife, Lindale native Miranda Lambert, also has five nominations â€” three solo and two with her trio Pistol Annies. Keith Urban and Florida Georgia Line are next with four apiece.
Musgraves' rapid ascendance comes as something of a surprise. This is the first year the talented, left-of-center newcomer has been nominated, and the number of trophies she and Swift are up for signals something of an admission that the once deeply conservative format is opening up to new sounds and ideas in the 21st Century.
She's also nominated in the new artist of the year category, and as a songwriter on her own hit "Merry Go 'Round" and Miranda Lambert's "Mama's Broken Heart."
Follow AP Music Writer Chris Talbott: http://twitter.com/Chris_Talbott .