CMA Awards 2013: Song of the Year nominees

In 1967, the heartbreaking Dallas Frazier-penned ballad, "There Goes My Everything," recorded by Jack Greene, took home the first CMA honor for Song of the Year, which is awarded, appropriately, to the songwriter. In the five decades since then, ballads have ruled the category -- the more mournful the better. Take, for instance, the tune many consider the best country song of all time. "He Stopped Loving Her Today" revitalized the faltering career of George Jones and was Song of the Year for both 1980 and '81. The next two years, the honor belonged to "Always on My Mind." Since that time, no song has won more than once, but each has made an impression, something this year's nominees can all claim as well. Yet only two of them are really ballads in that same tradition. Does that mean "I Drive Your Truck" or Kacey Musgraves' "Merry Go 'Round" have the edge? Perhaps. But there's also Bob Dylan, a contributor to Darius Rucker's "Wagon Wheel" to contend with. Will CMA voters pass up the chance to honor the greatest songwriter of his generation? "Pontoon" is probably the longshot here. And although she's nominated twice (as is her co-writer Shane McAnally), it would be fun to see Kacey take this honor for the sassy smash, "Mama's Broken Heart," which she and Shane penned with Brandy Clark.

CMA Album of the Year nominees

CMA Music Video of the Year nominees

  • "Wagon Wheel," written by Bob Dylan and Ketch Secor. Recorded by Darius Rucker.

  • "Merry Go 'Round," written by Kacey Musgraves, Josh Osborne and Shane McAnally. Recorded by Kacey Musgraves.

  • "I Drive Your Truck," written by Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington and Jimmy Yeary. Recorded by Lee Brice.

  • "Pontoon," written by Natalie Hemby, Luke Laird and Barry Dean. Recorded by Little Big Town.

  • Mama's Broken Heart," written by Brandy Clark, Shane McAnally and Kacey Musgraves. Recorded by Miranda Lambert.