May 21st, 2024

Jason Aldean will honor Toby Keith with a performance at the 2024 ACM Awards


By Maria Sherman, The Associated Press on May 14, 2024.

Toby Keith appears at the CMT Music Awards, in Nashville, Tenn., on April 14, 2008, left, and Jason Aldean appears at the Country Radio Seminar in Nashville, Tenn., on Feb. 29, 2024. (AP Photo)

The time has come to raise a red solo cup. Jason Aldean will pay tribute to the late Toby Keith at the 2024 Academy of Country Music Awards.

The 59th ACM Awards, hosted by Reba McEntire, will take place Thursday at the Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas, just north of Dallas.

Across his career, Keith took home 14 ACM Awards, twice winning the top prize of entertainer of the year. He died in February at age 62, following a stomach cancer diagnosis.

“I’ve been a fan of his since the beginning and his songs are some of the first songs I played back in clubs early in my career, including the one I’ll be performing on the show,” Aldean said in a statement. “I was lucky enough to share the stage with Toby in Oklahoma this last year, and it means a lot to be able to honor him and properly celebrate his iconic career and legacy. He was one of a kind.”

Having Aldean, the most recent artist of the decade recipient, honor Keith made sense, ACM CEO Damon Whiteside said in a statement.

“The popularity, influence, and love for Toby Keith is infinite since his passing earlier this year,” Whiteside said, adding that the academy was looking forward to welcoming Keith’s family.

Luke Combs leads the 2024 nominations with eight nods. For a fifth year in a row, he’s up for both male artist of the year and entertainer of the year.

Megan Moroney and Morgan Wallen follow with six each, while Cody Johnson, Chris Stapleton and Lainey Wilson are tied with five.

Kane Brown, Jelly Roll, Cody Johnson, Miranda Lambert, Thomas Rhett, Post Malone, Parker McCollum, McEntire, Wilson and Stapleton will perform during the telecast. Fans can expect a few interesting collaborations as well – Kelsea Ballerini with Noah Kahan; Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani and Nate Smith with Avril Lavigne.

Among the presenters are Alabama, BRELAND,Carin León, Little Big Town, Randy Travis.

The awards will stream on Prime Video and the Amazon Music channel on Twitch Live at 8 p.m. Eastern. The red carpet feed will begin at 7 p.m.

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