The nominees for the 55th Annual CMA Awards were unveiled on Thursday morning and despite being banned from individual categories, Morgan Wallen received a single nomination in the Album of the Year category.
Wallen’s record breaking sophomore release, Dangerous: The Double Album, was included in the Album of the Year category alongside Carly Pearce’s 29, Eric Church’s Heart, Brothers Osborne’s Skeletons and Chris Stapleton’s Starting Over.
According to the CMA Awards, the Album of the Year award goes to the artist(s), producer(s) and mix engineer(s) involved in the album-making process. In this case, if Dangerous is crowned Album of the Year, Wallen and his collaborators, Dave Cohen, Matt Dragstrem, Jacob Durrett, Charlie Handsome and Joey Moi , will each receive an award.
The moment we’ve all been waiting for… congratulations to all of this year’s #CMAawards nominees! ✨
— CMA Country Music (@CountryMusic) September 9, 2021
After a video of Wallen using a racial slur surfaced online earlier this year, the Country Music Association announced that Wallen would be ineligible for individual CMA Awards categories, including Entertainer of the Year and Male Vocalist of the Year. However, the CMA Board of Directors amended the eligibility to allow Wallen’s collaborators to be nominated, “so as to not limit the opportunity for other credited collaborators,” according to Catharine McNelly, a CMA spokeswoman.
Therefore, Wallen was eligible to receive nominations in categories that honor artistic works such as Single of the Year, Song of the Year, Album of the Year, Musical Event of the Year and Music Video of the Year.
The Album of the Year nomination for Dangerous: The Double Album, marks Wallen’s first Album of the Year nomination and his first country music awards nomination this year.
Upon its release, Dangerous topped the charts for 10 consecutive weeks and shattered streaming records.
The 55th Annual CMA Awards will air Wednesday, November 10 on ABC.