CMAs' New Artist Award: 20 Years of Career Jumpstarts and Misfires - Rolling Stone
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CMAs’ New Artist Award: 20 Years of Career Jumpstarts and Misfires

Is a CMA New Artist win a forecast for an artist’s future success?

Dixie Chicks and Lady Antebellum

The Dixie Chicks in 1998; Lady Antebellum in 2008

Tami Chappell/Reuters; Bryan Bedder/Getty

Best New Artist: a blessing or a curse? Many of those budding young trophy winners at the Grammy Awards have found the latter to be true. But for country music's proverbial Grammys — the CMA Awards — it's pretty much a crapshoot. (See Brad Paisley for the blessing argument; Bryan White for the curse.) As we wait to see who will take the honors this year — Brandy Clark, Brett Eldredge, Kip Moore, Thomas Rhett or Cole Swindell  — here's a look back at the past 20 years of CMA New Artist victors and how they fared after their big honor.

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