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Chesney: Fans shouldn't decide top ACM prize

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(FROM AP) ? Immediately after accepting his fourth consecutive entertainer of the year trophy at Sunday night’s (May 18) Academy of Country Music Awards, Kenny Chesney said backstage that he doesn’t think it’s right that fans decide who takes that top prize. Sunday marked the first time in the awards’ 43-year history that the entertainer of the year award was given to an artist picked by online voting, as opposed to being selected by ACM members. ”The entertainer of the year trophy is supposed to represent heart and passion and an amazing amount of sacrifice, commitment, and focus,” Chesney said. “That’s the way Garth [Brooks] won it four times, that’s the way I won it, that’s the way [George] Strait won it, Reba [McEntire], Alabama all those years. That’s what it’s supposed to represent.” Chesney went on to say that the academy turned the award ”into a sweepstakes to see who can push people’s buttons the hardest on the Internet.” Chesney led all nominees with 11 nods, and ended up winning twice. His fourth consecutive entertainer of the year prize ties him with Brooks and puts him only behind Alabama, which won five in a row.

On a night full of repeat winners, other ACM honors went to Carrie Underwood, who won her second consecutive female vocalist award, Brad Paisley, who nabbed his second straight male vocalist award, Rascal Flatts, which won top vocal group for the sixth consecutive year, and Brooks & Dunn, which took home their 13th straight vocal duo award. (AP via Yahoo!)

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