Luke Bryan Kicks Off Hosting 2021 CMA Awards With an 'American Idol' Reunion!
By Mona Khalifeh and Zach Seemayer
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Celebrating country music! Luke Bryan hosted the 2021 CMA Awards on Wednesday night and it's safe to say, it was our kind of night.
The 45-year-old country superstar made his hosting debut at the 55th annual ceremony, which aired live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.
After a rocking opening number from Miranda Lambert, Bryan took the stage and reflected on the importance of the star-studded ceremony.
"I grew up watching the CMA Awards every year, and now somehow they turned this thing over to me," Bryan said with a laugh. "For me, tonight is all about the music and the dreamers... but it's not all about the nominations. Because I don't have any."
"It's fine! I'm not bitter," he added quickly, poking fun at himself. "I have won a couple of CMAs. I won two Entertainer of the Years. But not lately! And some even say I've been robbed of a couple or two!"
He was also joined on stage by his American Idol co-stars Lionel Richie and Katy Perry, who came out to give him "a little help."
"This is not my first rodeo," Bryan said. "I've hosted other awards shows."
"Yeah, we've seen those," Perry responded.
"That's why we're here," Richie added quickly.
The friendly teasing was actually a pretext for the trio to introduce the first category of the night.
In addition to holding down the fort as a host, the two-time CMA Entertainer of the Year winner performed his new single, "Up," toward the end of the evening, and had the audience on their feet as he rocked the arena.