This will be the fifth time hosting the event for McEntire, a six-time CMA Award winner, and the first time for Rucker, who has been nominated for five CMA Awards and won Best New Artist in 2009, after transitioning from his tenure as the leader of Hootie & the Blowfish to a country solo career.
“I’m thrilled to be back hosting the CMA Awards and even more thrilled that I get to share the stage with Darius Rucker,” McEntire said in a statement. “We’re looking forward to a night of celebrating great Country Music and hope you’ll tune in and watch!”
Rucker added, “I look forward to the CMA Awards every year because of the incredible performances and the opportunity to celebrate the year in Country Music. To be invited to host this year’s awards alongside Reba – are you kidding me?! – is an absolute honor.”
According to CMA CEO Sarah Trahern, ceremony organizers plan to have live performances at the show. Much like this year’s ACM Awards, it is unlikely that there will be a live audience due to Covid-19 restrictions. This marks the first time in 14 years that the CMAs have been held somewhere other than Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
Miranda Lambert and Luke Combs are the top nominees, with seven and six respectively. Both will compete for the top prize of Entertainer of the Year, alongside Eric Church, Keith Urban, and longtime CMA Awards co-host Carrie Underwood.