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Eric Church, Hunter Hayes, Miranda Lambert and Taylor Swift lead 2013 ACM nominations


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Eric Church performs at Fremont Street Experience in downtown Las Vegas on Saturday, March 31, 2012.

2012 ACM Awards: Arrivals at MGM Grand

Carrie Underwood arrives at the 47th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 1, 2012. Launch slideshow »

2012 ACM Awards: Winners Backstage

Miranda Lambert backstage at the 47th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 1, 2012. Launch slideshow »

It’s the country music party of the year as the star-studded 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards broadcasts April 7 from MGM Grand Garden Arena. It will be the ultimate gathering of country’s kings and queens.

After all the nominations were revealed this morning, the tally stood at Eric Church with 7 nods, Hunter Hayes with 6, Miranda Lambert and Taylor Swift with 5, Luke Bryan, Kacey Musgraves and Little Big Town at 4 apiece and Jason Aldean, Blake Shelton, Eli Young Band and Florida Georgia Line with 3 each.

Our Venetian headliner Tim McGraw picked up a nomination this morning for his duet with Kenny Chesney on “Feel Like a Rock Star” for Vocal Event of the Year. Las Vegas regular Toby Keith was nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year, and although his country bar Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill at Harrah’s wasn’t nominated, his Denver venue was for Nightclub of the Year.

Our Red Rock Resort was one of five nominated as Country Music Venue of the Year. Luke will join Blake as hosts; it’s the third year for Blake and the debut for Luke. Over at The Orleans, there will be live cut-ins from the final third day of the ACM Experience Fan Fest hosted by Brad Paisley.

Nominees were revealed via social media and an ACM digital press conference via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube featuring Sheryl Crow, Scotty McCreery, The Band Perry, Ryan Seacrest, Sharon Osbourne, “ET” anchors Nancy O’Dell and Rob Marciano and “2 Broke Girls” actress Beth Behrs.

Country fans announced the nominees for the biggest prize of Entertainer of the Year. That battle comes down to Jason, Luke, husband-and-wife Blake and Miranda and Taylor. New Artist of the Year also is awarded by fan voting for nominees Brantley Gilbert, Jana Kramer and Florida Georgia Line. The winners will be announced during the awards.

THE ACM EXPERIENCE: The family-friendly ACM Experience from April 5-7 at The Orleans will have more than 150 vendors, food trucks and interactive exhibits from across the nation. The free stages to be set up throughout The Orleans with a new, two-day ticketed Outdoor Music Festival features The Band Perry, Brantley, Justin Moore, Florida Georgia Line, Dierks Bentley, Kix Brooks, Eli Young Band, Hunter and more.

Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

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