Country singer Eric Church gets leading five CMA nominations

Wed Sep 5, 2012 3:27pm EDT
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By Vernell Hackett

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Reuters) - Singer Eric Church, whose career has rocketed over the past year, swept the 46th annual Country Music Association nominations on Wednesday with five nods, including one for best album for his hit, "Chief."

Church, 35, also scored nominations for best male vocalist along with best song, single and video for "Springsteen," which tells the story of a couple who met at a Bruce Springsteen concert.

Country music couple Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton each drew four nods, sharing one for song of the year for "Over You." They are also up for female and male vocalist.

Shelton will compete in the male vocalist category against Church, Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan and Keith Urban.

The female vocalist category pits Lambert against Kelly Clarkson, Martina McBride, Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

Jason Aldean, singers Dierks Bentley, Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift and the group Little Big Town each earned three nominations.

The CMA nominees included several crossovers from other genres, including pop star Clarkson and rapper Snoop Dogg, who was nominated for musical event of the year, an award for a collaboration by artists who don't normally perform together.

Snoop Dogg was nominated for "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die," which he recorded with Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson and Jamey Johnson.   Continued...

Singer Eric Church smiles after performing "Springsteen" at the 47th annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas, Nevada, April 1, 2012. REUTERS/Steve Marcus