The ACM Honors — a continuation of this year’s ACM Awards to hand out the Academy of Country Music’s off-camera awards — has announced its honorees. Kris Kristofferson is one of four songwriters receiving the Poet’s Award, Merle Haggard is the recipient of the Crystal Milestone Award and Carrie Underwood has been named the winner of the Gene Weed Special Achievement Award, recognizing her superior success in country music.
Ronnie Milsap, who will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in October, and Toby Keith will receive the Career Achievement Award for their work outside of the country community. Rascal Flatts, meanwhile, will be honored for their contributions in helping establish country music around the world.
Led by Kristofferson, this year’s Poet’s Award crop is particularly noteworthy: It includes George Strait collaborator Dean Dillon, Bakersfield Sound pioneer Buck Owens and country music Renaissance man Cowboy Jack Clement, who died last year. Both Clement and Owens’ awards will be bestowed posthumously.
The 8th Annual ACM Honors, a mix of awards and musical performances, will be held September 9th at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. Jake Owen will serve as the night’s host.