Carrie Underwood
Carrie Underwood

Host Biography

Since first appearing on the CMA Awards to perform her hit "Jesus, Take the Wheel" in 2005, following her American Idol win, Carrie Underwood has become a beloved fixture at the CMA Awards. She is back again to host The 53rd Annual CMA Awards with special guest hosts and Country Music Hall of Fame members Reba McEntire and Dolly Parton, celebrating legendary women in Country Music throughout the ceremony. Country Music's Biggest Night broadcasts live from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, WEDNESDAY, NOV. 13 (8:00–11:00 p.m. EDT), on ABC.

Carrie Underwood emerged from the promise of her 2005 American Idol win to become a true multi-format, multi-media superstar, spanning achievements in music, television, and film. A seven-time GRAMMY® Award winner, she has amassed over 100 major honors, sold 64 million records worldwide, and recorded 26 #1 singles, 13 of which she co-wrote, with a catalog of songs that has been streamed nearly 3 billion times worldwide.

Carrie released her eagerly-anticipated sixth studio album, Cry Pretty, on September 14, 2018, her first studio album on Capitol Records Nashville.  Cry Pretty, which she co-produced alongside writer/producer David Garcia, debuted at No. 1 on both the Billboard 200 and Top Country Album Charts and was the biggest all-genre debut by a female in 2018. The debut earned Underwood a place in music history as the only woman to land four country albums at the top of the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, as well as the first female country act to top the Billboard Artist 100 Chart. The critically-acclaimed, Gold-certified album was the best-selling Country album debut of 2018, as well as the biggest Country album debut since 2015 and the biggest female Country album debut since 2012. This is Underwood's seventh consecutive album to debut at No. 1 on the Top Country Albums chart, representing all of her first seven albums including her Greatest Hits: Decade #1.

The album's lead single and title track, "Cry Pretty" was released in April 2018 and debuted as the #1 song in the U.S. all-genres chart. The song also topped download charts in 38 countries around the world and amassed over 3.5 billion social impressions across 66 countries during its first week, which culminated with Carrie's show-stopping performance on the "2018 ACM Awards" telecast. Carrie co-wrote the powerful single with Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna, and Liz Rose (aka The Love Junkies).  Cry Pretty's second single, "Love Wins," and its accompanying vibrant and hopeful music video directed by Shane Drake, were released in August 2018 to rave reviews and was featured on the soundtrack of the motion picture, "Breakthrough."  The third single, "Southbound," continues to top playlists as one of the Songs of the Summer of 2019.

Cry Pretty continues to grow in sales and popularity, having appeared on numerous lists of year-end accolades, including:  NPR's "Best Songs of 2018;" New York Times' Jon Caramanica's "Best Songs of 2018;" A.V. Club's "Best Country Albums of 2018;" People Magazine's "Top 10 in Music;" The Tennessean's "Best Nashville Albums of 2018;" Sounds Like Nashville's "18 Best Singles of 2018," and numerous others. Underwood was the #1 most streamed female country artist of 2018. She was also deemed one of People's "25 Most Intriguing People of 2018," alongside such powerful female newsmakers as Michelle Obama, Meghan Markle, Julia Roberts, Serena Williams, and others.

In May, Carrie launched The Cry Pretty Tour 360, which continues through October, playing 55+ arenas across the U.S. and Canada, with an all-female line-up, featuring special guests Maddie & Tae and Runaway June. The spectacular production features an innovative, state-of-the-art stage in the middle of the arena floor, creating a unique 360-degree setting to allow fans on all sides of the arena an intimate view of the concert. This Summer, she brought the house down with a show-stopping set with Joan Jett during CMA Fest 2019 and she brought The Cry Pretty Tour UK to five arenas in the UK, and also played the iconic Glastonbury Festival main stage.

Carrie is the first female artist to be twice named the Academy of Country Music's Entertainer of the Year.  In addition to seven GRAMMY® awards, she has won seven CMA Awards, 20 CMT Music Awards, 13 American Music Awards and numerous other awards and honors. She is the most awarded artist in CMT history. In 2018, she took home her 14th career ACM Award for Vocal Event of the Year for "The Fighter," her collaboration with Keith Urban.

She was recognized by Pollstar as the top female country touring artist for each of her headlining tours in 2008, 2010, 2012 and for 2016's "The Storyteller Tour – Stories in the Round."  Carrie topped Billboard's Top 25 Tours of 2016 as the leading female country artist and was the leading female artist on Country Aircheck's top country radio performers list for her success in both 2015 and 2016. Her first five studio albums, Some Hearts, Carnival Ride, Play On, Blown Away and Storyteller – are certified Platinum or multi-Platinum, each winning an American Music Award as Favorite Country Album and tallying an incredible 40 weeks at #1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart.

The RIAA's highest certified country album artist to debut this century, Underwood also holds the distinction of the highest album certification of any country artist to emerge since 2000 with the 8x Multi-Platinum success of her 2005 debut, Some Hearts.  She is the all-time Top Country Artist (male or female) on RIAA's Digital Single Ranking, also placing her among the Top 5 females in the history of RIAA's Digital Single Program across all genres.

In December of 2014, she released her Platinum-certified Greatest Hits: Decade #1, which produced two new #1 hits co-written by Underwood, including the RIAA-Platinum, GRAMMY-winning "Something in the Water." Her chart-topping platinum fifth studio album, Storyteller, produced four #1 hits.

Underwood demonstrated her creative diversity in 2013 starring as Maria von Trapp in NBC's three-hour holiday blockbuster, the Emmy®-winning The Sound of Music Live!, whose airings attracted 44 million viewers.  The broadcast ushered in a new era of live television musicals and remains the highest rated production amongst those that have followed.

In 2018, she released the hit event anthem she co-wrote, "The Champion" featuring Ludacris, which opened NBC's Super Bowl LII and was incorporated into the network's coverage of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. "The Champion" has been certified Platinum by the RIAA.

In 2018, Carrie also celebrated her 10th anniversary as a proud member of the Grand Ole Opry, and she returns this Fall for her seventh season as the voice of primetime television's #1 program for the past eight consecutive years, making it the most dominant primetime show since 1950, NBC's Sunday Night Football.  This year, Carrie will host the CMA Awards for the 12th consecutive year.

Carrie is lead designer for her fitness and lifestyle brand, CALIA by Carrie Underwood, which launched in 2015 and is exclusively available at DICK'S Sporting Goods nationwide and online at