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Country music artists get tip of hat from Billboard Music Awards

Luke Bryan earns seven nominations from Billboard, tops list of Nashville artists
Ethan Miller, Getty Images

The nominees for the 2014 Billboard Music Awards were announced on April 9. Both Billboard and MusicRow released the nominations on their websites, revealing many country music artists in the running.

Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton, Alan Jackson, Taylor Swift, The Robertsons (of Duck Dynasty fame) and Garth Brooks all received nods from Billboard. Luke Bryan tops the list of Nashville names with an impressive seven nominations earned. He is favored among artists such as Beyonce and Justin Timberlake for the Top Billboard 200 Album and Artist awards as well as among Drake, Eminem and Bruno Mars for Top Male Artist.

In addition to Luke Bryan firmly planting country music in the spotlight, several other Nashville artists are competing within country categories. Garth Brooks and The Robertsons are nominated for Top Country Album while Florida Georgia Line, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton and Taylor Swift round out the nominations for Top Country Male, Duo, Artist, Song, and Album.

Besides being nominated in country music categories, Taylor Swift gets additional notice for the relationship she maintains with her fans. She is nominated for Top Social Artist among pop powerhouses One Direction, Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus.

Alan Jackson also lands in the Christian arena with a nomination for Top Christian Album. His album “Precious Memories: Volume II” ranks among popular Christian artists Chris Tomlin and Third Day, whose careers each span nearly 20 years and consists of several music industry awards.

Artists received nominations based on many factors including radio airplay, album and song sales, tour success, social media interactions and more.

The Billboard Music Awards will be broadcast live on ABC on May 18. The event begins at 7:00 p.m. Central.

A complete list of nominees can be found on Billboard.com. Country music nominees are as follows:

Top Billboard 200 Album

Beyonce, Beyonce
Luke Bryan, Crash My Party
Drake, Nothing Was the Same
Eminem, The Marshall Mathers LP2
Justin Timberlake, The 20/20 Experience

Top Duo/Group

Florida Georgia Line
Imagine Dragons
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
One Direction
OneRepublic

Top Male Artist

Luke Bryan
Drake
Eminem
Bruno Mars
Justin Timberlake

Top Billboard 200 Artist

Beyonce
Luke Bryan
Eminem
One Direction
Justin Timberlake

Top Social Artist

Justin Bieber
Miley Cyrus
One Direction
Rihanna
Taylor Swift

Top Country Artist

Luke Bryan
Florida Georgia Line
Darius Rucker
Blake Shelton
Taylor Swift

Top Country Album

Garth Brooks, Blame It All on My Roots: Five Decades of Influences
Luke Bryan, Crash My Party
Florida Georgia Line, Here’s to the Good Times
The Robertsons, Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas
Blake Shelton, Based on a True Story

Top Country Song

Luke Bryan, “Crash My Party”
Luke Bryan, “That’s My Kind of Night”
Florida Georgia Line, “Cruise”
Darius Rucker, “Wagon Wheel”
Blake Shelton (Feat. Pistol Annies and Friends), “Boys ‘Round Here”

Top Christian Album

Alan Jackson, Precious Memories: Volume II
Skillet, Rise
Third Day, Miracle
Chris Tomlin, Burning Lights
Various Artists, WOW Hits 2014