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Carrie Underwood Says She’s Stepping Down as CMA Awards Host

“It’s hard to imagine topping what we have accomplished together,” writes the singer on Instagram

Jon Freeman Dec 31, 2019

Carrie Underwood has announced plans to step down as the host of the CMA Awards. Photo: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

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Carrie Underwood has announced her plans to step down as the CMA Awards host, a role she has held for 12 consecutive years.

In a lengthy Instagram post, Underwood wrote about her plans for the future and discussed the many memories she’s made while serving as host, from hamming it up with her longtime co-host Brad Paisley to helping lead a big celebration of women in the CMAs’ most recent edition.

“I will always treasure every show, from the 11 that I was so lucky to do with my partner in crime and friend for life, Brad Paisley, to sharing the stage with two of my all-time heroes,” she wrote, nodding to the 2019 CMA Awards, which she co-hosted with Dolly Parton and Reba McEntire. “It’s hard to imagine topping what we have accomplished together, so I’ve decided that it’s time to pass the hosting torch (at least for now!) to others that will cherish it and honor it as much as I do.” Underwood also hinted at “many exciting things” on the way in 2020, but didn’t offer specifics.

Underwood and Paisley became the faces of the CMA Awards in 2008, when Underwood was only two albums into her remarkable career but already a bona fide superstar on the strength of 2005’s Some Hearts and its follow-up, Carnival Ride. Prior to Underwood and Paisley coming aboard as emcees, the 2007 CMA Awards had been a largely host-free affair, but the preceding three-year span from 2004 to 2006 was overseen by Brooks & Dunn. At the 2019 CMAs, Underwood was nominated for Entertainer of the Year, but ultimately lost that prize to Garth Brooks.

Having wrapped her Cry Pretty Tour 360 earlier in 2019, Underwood’s live schedule is light at the moment. She’s scheduled for a handful of spring dates, including a performance at Stagecoach in Indio, California, on April 25th.

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