Every Friday morning from 6:00 to 7:30, everyone’s favorite country radio show rang in a new day and the approach of the long-awaited weekend with the spirit of Nashville, Tennessee, broken-down trucks, and backyard barbecues. The Honky Tonk Show began its first semester in hopes of providing its listeners with a place to listen to their favorite country hits with their (sometimes) predictable lyrics, jamming melodies, and catchy harmonies. Over the past four months, hosts Matthew De Meulder and Anjali Paye have reviewed everything from Gabby Barrett’s new singles to Old Dominion throwbacks to old-school Dolly Parton. But with 2021 now behind us, it seems fitting for the final edition of Season 1 of the Honky Tonk show to include our own version of an awards show. For those of you who could not manage to drag yourselves out of bed on a chilly Friday morning at the crack of dawn to listen live, we have broken down our picks for you in writing. And so, without further ado, here are the (Honky Tonk Show’s) 2021 Country Music Awards.
Breakthrough Artist of the Year:
An artist that shocked the world by breaking onto the country music stage in the past year.
Matt’s Choice: Russell Dickerson
Anjali’s Choice: Morgan Wade
Album of the Year:
The albums that arguably defined the country scene of 2021.
Matt’s Choice: Weekends Look a Little Different These Days by Brett Young
Anjali’s Choice: Dangerous by Morgan Wallen
Song of the Year:
Not necessarily a new single but one that was heavily featured in our Spotify Wrapped (or Apple Music replay in Matt’s case).
Matt’s Choice: “Pick Me Up” by Gabby Barrett
Anjali’s Choice: “Hotel Key” by Old Dominion
Single of the Year:
The song released this year that we would have played in every episode if we could.
Matt’s Choice: “Drunk” by Miranda Lambert and Elle King
Anjali’s Choice: “Fancy Like” by Walker Hayes
Impact Song of the Year:
The song or artist that inspired us with their lyrics or merely their stellar persona.
Matt’s Choice: “Lay It On Me” by Mickey Guyton
Anjali’s Choice: “Footprints on the Moon” by Gabby Barrett
Throwback Song of the Year:
An oldie but a goodie.
Matt’s Choice: “Wagon Wheel” by Darius Rucker
Anjali’s Choice: “Neon Moon” by Brooks & Dunn
Listen here to a compilation of all of these award-winning (or at least in our humble opinion award-deserving) songs.