Kenny Chesney took the Academy of Country Music Awards back out behind the woodpile to give 'em the whoopin' they deserve — well, actually, backstage at the ceremony in Vegas.
Hooray for the good ole boy! This year ACM chiefs pulled a dumb stunt by having website users pick the winner of the award for entertainer of the year.
That's the equivalent to the Oscars handing over the decision on what wins best picture to anonymous hooligans visiting Oscars.org. (I know, I know, sometimes ya gotta wonder if they wouldn't come up with a better picture.) But, hey, who do the ACMs think they are? The People's Choice Awards? MTV Awards? Kid's Choice? "American Idol"? Those are all decided by Internet fans.
The ACMs are supposed to matter because they're a peer-group prize bestowed — chiefly — by West Coast-based pros in the country-music biz. By contrast, that other, similar trophy doled out by the Country Music Association has its home in Nashville. The two kudos used to honor different artists, but nowadays they tend to mirror each other six months apart (ACMs aired during May TV sweeps; CMAs during November TV sweeps).
"They took it from what the award really represents into a sweepstakes to see who can push people's buttons the hardest on the Internet," Chesney fumed to reporters back in the press room. "It's complete disrespect of the artist, what they've lowered it to. It really diminishes the integrity of the music that we're making. And I can say that because I won."
Of course, he didn't say nuthin' like on stage when he won. Instead, he gushed: "This one is really actually special because long before I had a hit record, the fans always came to the shows. And I want to thank you guys for voting and for being there for me. " If Kenny hadn't been all nice and thankful at the podium, his daddy might've taken Kenny back behind the woodpile.