Singer Lee Ann Womack and country pop trio the Dixie Chicks nabbed three prizes apiece last night at the 36th annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Los Angeles.
Those acts, as well as the other winners at the ceremony, had plenty to say backstage.
Dixie Chicks' Martie Seidel The Dixie Chicks won for Entertainer of the Year, Top Vocal Group, and Video of the Year. "Just when I think it's going to stop, it doesn't stop, and I'm really glad, but I'm preparing for the day when it doesn't. I really, really wanted [the Entertainer of the Year] award, but there's always so much competition for that … and the more time you take off, it is kind of scary because you're out of the limelight, so to speak."
Lee Ann Womack Womack's "I Hope You Dance" won Event Record of the Year, Single Record of the Year, and Song of the Year.
"Every time something new happens I can't believe it. The song has been going now for over a year. It was No. 1 for six weeks on the country charts, now it's been No. 1 for seven weeks on the AC charts. Now they're just starting it in Europe. I'm just amazed. It's wonderful, it has taken my career to a new level — and if I didn't dance before, I'm certainly dancing now."
Toby Keith Keith won awards for Top Male Vocalist and Album of the Year.
"It's cool, we've been waiting eight years for this, so God bless … if we'd gotten shut out on all six [of our nominations] tonight, I'd have been pretty pissed about that. I wanted to win this for people who wanted me to win this, not for myself. It just took a monkey off my back. The male vocalist category is always the toughest, you've always got McGraw, George Strait, you know, Kenny Chesney and those guys in there."
Brooks & Dunn's Kix Brooks The singers won the prize for Top Vocal Duo.
"See what we did was we sabotaged our career. We probably got a little too comfortable, and you've got to come up with something real special to keep people's interest after 10 years. So we made an effort to try and pull that off. You got to find a way, and I don't know if 'reinvent yourself' is the right word, but you've got to find a way to do something different."
Kenny Rogers Rogers won the Career Achievement Award.
"One of the things I love about this award [is] that it wasn't based totally on my past; it was based on someone whose had a past, [then] had a, for a lack of a better word, flat-line, and then came back and made an impact in country music. So it gives me a chance to not just focus on what I've done, but what I'm doing."
Barbara Mandrell Mandrell won the Pioneer Award. "You know, I think I'm a know-it-all, I always think I know everything. [Today,] not a clue. I [thought] I was here to present an award to Dick Clark, and it had really good copy that I was supposed to deliver and that's what I thought I was supposed to be doing. There are no words for the joy I feel. People are amazing, they just continue to give."