Blake Shelton dominates CMA awards

Miranda Lambert wept on stage during her husband's acceptance speech for song of the year

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Blake Shelton was the big winner at the Country Music Association (CMA) Awards, picking up three trophies including the coveted entertainer of the year prize.

Shelton, a coach on the US version of The Voice, also won male vocalist of the year for a third consecutive time.

He shared song of the year with his wife, fellow singer Miranda Lambert, for their ballad Over You.

Country legend Willie Nelson was also presented with a lifetime achievement award at the Nashville ceremony.

Shelton's entertainer of the year award came as a surprise in a category that also saw previous two-time winner Taylor Swift, four-time winner Kenny Chesney, 2010 winner Brad Paisley and Jason Aldean nominated.

His last album, Red River Blue, was released in July 2011, however he has seen his profile and popularity soar since appearing on NBC's The Voice.

CMA AWARD WINNERS 2012

Entertainer of the Year - Blake Shelton

Album of the Year - Chief, Eric Church

Song of the Year - Over You, Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert

Single of the Year - Pontoon, Little Big Town

Male Vocalist of the Year - Blake Shelton

Female Vocalist of the Year - Miranda Lambert

New Artist of the Year - Hunter Hayes

Vocal Duo of the Year - Thompson Square

Vocal Group of the Year - Little Big Town

Musician of the Year - Mac McAnally

Music Video of the Year - Red Solo Cup, Toby Keith

Musical Event - Feel like a Rock Star, Kenny Chesney duet with Tim McGraw

"Man! Entertainer of the year? What are you talking about?" he said.

"I know I am not out there on the road as much. I don't know how this happened. I know I have a side job, but country music is still what I love doing."

Lambert also won female vocalist of the year for a third successive time.

Between them, the husband and wife team took home a third of all the awards on offer.

The other multiple award-winner was Alabama quartet Little Big Town who picked up vocal group of the year and single of the year for their hit Pontoon.

Eric Church won album of the year for his record Chief, while Toby Keith won music video of the year for his hit novelty record, Red Solo Cup.

Mac McAnally was named musician of the year and 21-year-old Hunter Hayes took home the prize for best new artist.

Another husband and wife team, Thompson Square, took home the award for best vocal duo - ending Sugarland's five-year run in that category.

"Can you believe we were singing for tips for eight years down on Broadway and now we've won this award? It's one of the most wonderful nights of our lives so far," Keifer Thompson told reporters backstage.

Despite being nominated for three awards, Swift left empty-handed.

The ceremony - hosted by Carrie Underwood and Paisley, also saw performances by Swift, Dierks Bentley, The Band Perry, Aldean, the Zac Brown Band and Kelly Clarkson.

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