Garth Brooks announced in a Zoom press conference he convened Wednesday morning (July 29) that he is withdrawing from consideration for this year’s Country Music Association‘s Entertainer of the Year award.
Brooks, who has won the award seven times, the latest being in 2019, told the roughly 70 reporters who attended the conference that “it’s time for somebody else to hold the award and know what entertainer of the year feels like.” He added that he is removing himself for this year and for all future years.
Brooks spoke about a comment on social media after he won the award last year, edging out Carrie Underwood.
“There was one tweet in there that really stuck in my head. It said, ‘Hey man. This guy. Why doesn’t he step down?’ One hundred percent agreed. The last thing, I want to do is seem ungrateful, to the CMAs and everybody who has voted for us,” he said. “We are officially pulling ourselves out. It’s time for somebody else to hold that award and know what that feels like, because they’re all out there busting their butts.”
Brooks said he’s asked the CMA, if his name is in the first round of voting this year, to simply slide his name out and put the next person on the list in.
He said the tweet that questioned why he wasn’t stepping down bothered him for eight months.
“But there is a freeing feeling about me right now when I walk out of this building that I’m going to really, really, really enjoy where we stand as a band and crew,” Brooks added. “I really love the fact that someone else is gonna get to experience that entertainer of the year nod, so that’s a wonderful thing.”
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