The 51st Annual Country Music Association (CMA) Awards once again brought together the biggest names in country music for an evening of memorable performances. The three-hour telecast found 14.3 million viewers tuning in to listen to their favorite artists, while watching award presentations of country music’s highest honors. Sennheiser microphones and wireless systems were present throughout the broadcast, which turned out to be ABC’s most highly viewed Wednesday night program in three years.
Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley hosted the evening, both speaking and singing through a Sennheiser SKM 5200 handheld transmitter and MD 5235 capsule combination — all running through a Sennheiser 3732-II receiver. Underwood also received a nomination for Female Vocalist of the Year.
The 51st CMA Awards drew an audience of 14.3 million viewers, who saw Lady Antebellum and P!NK perform with Digital 6000/Digital 9000 combos
After an understated a cappella rendition of Amazing Grace by Eric Church, Lady Antebellum and a bevy of other performers joined Darius Rucker for a rendition of erstwhile Hootie and the Blowfish hit ‘Hold My Hand’. Lady Antebellum put a Sennheiser Digital 6000/9000 wireless system to work, which included EM 6000 receivers and SKM 9000 handheld transmitters paired with MD 9235 microphone capsules. During the evening, the band also received an Album of the Year nomination for their latest record, Heart Break.
Reba McEntire then joined Best New Artist nominee Kelsea Ballerini for a performance of Ballerini’s hit ‘Legends’. McEntire — who also received a nomination for Female Vocalist of the Year — performed through a Sennheiser SKM 5200 handheld transmitter and Neumann KK 105 capsule combination, flawlessly transmitted through a Sennheiser EM 3732-II receiver. The result was a crystal-clear vocal sound that preserved the emotional intensity of Ballerini’s powerful ballad.
First time is a charm
Crossover superstar P!NK delivered a faithful rendition of her nostalgic ballad ‘Barbies’ on her first ever CMA performance, encircled by her band which featured backing vocalists, an acoustic guitarist, and a string section. Her voice was captured with Sennheiser’s Digital 6000/9000 wireless system, running through an EM 6000 receiver. Like Lady Antebellum, P!NK relied on a combination of the Sennheiser SKM 9000 handheld transmitter and MD 9235 capsule, which delivered a pleasing, natural sound. She then performed an emotionally moving duet with Kenny Chesney on “Setting the World on Fire,” which also received a nomination for Musical Event of the Year.
Beyond the evening’s high-lustre moments, Sennheiser was also featured prominently in other ways throughout the CMA Awards. Newly-minted Sennheiser artist Luke Combs received a nomination for Best New Artist, while numerous wired Sennheiser and Neumann microphones, including 130 evolution microphones, were used throughout the awards show on everything from voiceovers to covering assorted backline duties.
Sennheiser is shaping the future of audio – a vision built on more than 70 years of innovation culture, which is deeply rooted within the family-owned company. Founded in 1945, Sennheiser is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of headphones, microphones and wireless transmission systems. With 20 sales subsidiaries and long-established trading partners, the company is active in more than 50 countries and operates its own production facilities in Germany, Ireland and the USA. Sennheiser has around 2,800 employees around the world that share a passion for audio excellence. Since 2013, Sennheiser has been managed by Daniel Sennheiser and Dr. Andreas Sennheiser, the third generation of the family to run the company. In 2016, the Sennheiser Group had sales totaling €658.4 million. www.sennheiser.com