Chris Stapleton expressed his gratitude during a humble acceptance speech when he scored a rare achievement at the 16th annual ACM Honors, which aired on Monday night (September 18).
Stapleton is the latest recipient of the Triple Crown Award, a coveted honor that goes to an artist who receives an Entertainer of the Year win, along with earning awards in their respective New Artist and Artist (male, female or duo or group) categories, per the Academy of Country Music.
“I’m so grateful to everybody that has supported me over the years. I gotta thank my wife, Morgane, who’s not here with us tonight, and all my kids at home who give up so much of their time, our energy and our presence to let us do this thing,” Stapleton said when he took the stage at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Downtown Nashville, Tennessee. “It’s a wonderful and rare thing to get to do something that you love so much for a living. It’s just unbelievable that I continue to get to do this, and I’m so grateful to all the country music fans, and all the fans, anybody that ever comes to a show or hear something and tell somebody about us. ...That’s what’s made this happen. So, thank you, everybody. We really appreciate this. I’ll cherish (this award).”
Stapleton notched the Triple Crown Award when he was crowned Entertainer of the Year at the 58th annual ACM Awards earlier this year in Frisco, Texas. He said at that time that he was “in shock,” acknowledged the talent of the other artists nominated in that category and spotlighted his wife and kids, saying, “this is for them.”
The “White Horse” hitmaker — who just debuted a Phil Collins cover, collaborating with Snoop Dogg and Cindy Blackman Santana, for the new Monday Night Football open — is in good company with a small number of award winners. Only eight other artists have won the Triple Crown Award.
Most recently, Miranda Lambert became a Triple Crown winner at the 15th annual ACM Honors last year. Others to have received the Triple Crown Award include Jason Aldean, Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Mickey Gilley, Merle Haggard, Barbara Mandrell, and Carrie Underwood.
Other honorees during the 16th annual ACM Honors include Clint Black, BRELAND, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Charlie Cook, Charlie Daniels, Mike Dungan, Ashley Gorley, HARDY, Bill Mayne, Tim McGraw, K.T. Oslin, Chris Stapleton, and Troy Vollhoffer. The star-studded show, hosted by Carly Pearce, also included stunning performances by Breland, Chris Janson, Carly Pearce, Keith Urban, Trisha Yearwood, Bailey Zimmerman, Jordan Davis, Emily Shackelton, Lady A, The War and Treaty, Brandy Clark, Anne Wilson, Priscilla Block, Billy Ray Cyrus and Firerose with Travis Denning, Lee Brice, Brett Young, Nelly and Sara Evans.
Husband and wife duo The War and Treaty — Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Trotter — honored Stapleton with a powerful cover of “Cold,” released on his Starting Over album in 2020. Marty Stuart presented the Kentucky-born hitmaker with his award.
The 16th annual ACM Honors, hailed the “Country Music industry’s favorite night,” aired on Monday night on FOX. Viewers can also stream the show beginning Tuesday (September 19) on Hulu.