The Awards You'll Never See on TV

by Alison Bonaguro


True country music fans know all about the CMT Music Awards. This is our show. The one where we get to do the voting. And it feels so good to finally be heard by someone other than the DJs and VJs we hound 24, 7. But I do have one little complaint: there simply aren't enough categories. Country music videos go way beyond the singer-on-stage storyline of other videos. Some make you laugh, some make you cry, some make you stop what you're doing and write nasty letters to President Bush. I can honestly say there isn't one video on CMT that doesn't deserve some kind of award.   Well, except maybe that one where it's raining on Rascal Flatts. Other than that, they're all very worthy.   For example, with all the videos Kenny Chesney has shot on the beach, shouldn't he get some kind of award for increasing tourism in the Caribbean? And how about Phil Vassar? Doesn't he deserve some kind of trophy for immersing himself and his piano in the water on his "I'll Take That as a Yes" video? Plus, it seems to me that there are a whole bunch of guitar players missing from the list of nominees. I know the artists thank them, and bring them up on stage from that big group hug, but most of them are too good to have to share their awards. They deserve their own. Like, Coolest Riffs or Most Callused Fingertips. The same goes for the drummers and keyboard, fiddle, banjo, mandolin and steel guitar players. I also think it'd be nice if the fans themselves got a few awards. I know one girl who has five Brooks & Dunn tattoos. Five. There oughta be some kind of recognition in that, other than toddlers pointing at her and saying, "Hey, look at that lady. She colored on herself." But those are just a few of the changes I'd make if I was in charge at CMT (and trust me, I've tried. They're not hiring.).

The Other Awards We'd Like to See

Bravest Corset-Wearing Horse Rider: Shania Twain "Don't"

Best Garth Brooks Imitation: Warren Brothers "Sell a Lot of Beer"

Sexiest Slow Dance: Lee Ann Womack "I May Hate Myself in the Morning"

Most Brand Names in a Video: Cledus Judd "I Love NASCAR"

Most Sentimental Use of Old Sports Footage: Tim McGraw "Live Like You Were Dyin'"

Still Stunning (Even Without Makeup) Award: Julie Roberts "Wake Up Older"

Most Adorable Smile from a Male Artist: Josh Gracin "Nothin' to Lose"

The Cry-Your-Eyes-Out Award: Martina McBride "God's Will"

Loudest Wake-Up Call for Parents: Blaine Larsen "How Do You Get That Lonely"

Best Use of a Jiffy Lube Employee: Jamie O'Neal "Trying to Find Atlantis"

Most Creative Use of Mud: Brad Paisley "Mud on the Tires"