COUNTRY MUSIC ARTISTS RECEIVE 2023 CMA INTERNATIONAL AWARDS
Luke Combs Receives the International Artist Achievement Award and Kaylee Bell Receives the Jeff Walker Global Country Artist Award
The Country Music Association presented its 2023 CMA International Artist Achievement Award to Country superstar and nine-time CMA Award winner Luke Combs on Tuesday, Nov. 7 during events surrounding “The 57th Annual CMA Awards.” Combs was surprised with the industry honor backstage at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville following his CMA Awards rehearsal by Milly Olykan, CMA Vice President, International Relations & Development.
The CMA International Artist Achievement Award recognizes outstanding achievement by a United States-based artist who has demonstrated the most significant creative growth, development and promotion of the Country Music industry outside of the United States during the eligibility period.
In the span of a year, Combs has sold out and performed over 40 shows across three continents and 16 countries. Throughout the tour, the 2023 CMA Single of the Year winner celebrated the release of his new album, Gettin’ Old — a companion to his 2022 record, Growin’ Up. Both albums, and his tour stops, have received critical acclaim and have showcased Country Music’s strength and growth outside of the U.S. Combs continues his historic run at Country radio, as he recently earned his record-extending 16th consecutive No. 1 single with his version of Tracy Chapman’s award-winning song, “Fast Car,” garnering over 750 million global streams to date.
In addition to Combs, New Zealand-born Country artist Kaylee Bell was presented the 2023 CMA Jeff Walker Global Artist Award on the red carpet at “The 57th Annual CMA Awards.” Country superstar Tyler Hubbard surprised Bell with the award during her red carpet interview with Nine Network’s breakfast show, “TODAY” (Australia).
“I’m so stoked that I get to play Country Music,” said Bell during her interview with Nine Network’s TODAY. “I love New Zealand, I love Australia and I love that I get to play around those countries and now here in Nashville. This is amazing.”
The Jeff Walker Global Country Artist Award recognizes outstanding achievements by a Country Music artist who is originally based internationally and currently signed outside of the United States. The artist must have furthered the popularity of Country Music as well as brought attention to the Country Music format in their foreign based territory during the eligibility period.
Bell has taken Country Music by storm in the New Zealand market with her radio success, tours and major growth in streaming. In May 2023, Bell created history when her The Red EP received Australian ARIA Gold certification, the first time an independent female Country artist has ever achieved this milestone. She has toured internationally playing C2C Australia, C2C London, CMA Fest, and CMC Rocks. Bell has performed all around New Zealand in Australia and the U.S. as both a headlining act and supporting act for the likes of The Chicks, Morgan Evans, Brad Paisley and Ed Sheeran.
The CMA International Awards honor industry executives and artists who have supported and made a difference towards the growth and promotion of Country Music in the international marketplace. Nominees are recognized in six categories acknowledging their dedication and efforts in growing opportunities for Country Music in their local territories.
Winners for the four remaining 2023 CMA International Awards categories will be presented their awards in the coming months.
About the Country Music Association
Founded in 1958, the Country Music Association is the first trade organization formed to promote a type of music. The organization serves as an educational and professional resource for the industry and advances the growth of Country Music worldwide. This is accomplished through CMA’s core initiatives: the CMA Awards, which annually recognize outstanding achievement in the industry; CMA Fest, which benefits music education through the CMA Foundation and is taped for a television special, “CMA Fest”; and “CMA Country Christmas.” CMA’s television properties are screened internationally in Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Gibraltar, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland and the U.K. CMA brings music worldwide, by presenting live performances featuring artists and songwriters through its touring series Introducing Nashville and CMA Songwriters Series. CMA members are located around the globe. Through task forces represented in Australia, Canada, Germany, Scandinavia and the U.K., industry leaders work to further Country Music in these territories. CMA presents six annual international industry awards to acknowledge the efforts of individuals working to develop Country Music in markets across the world.