Belfast Telegraph

Trace Adkins pokes fun at Blake Shelton's love life at CMT Artists of the Year ceremony

Blake Shelton was recognised as one of the most prolific musicians on the country scene at the CMT Artists of the Year Awards ceremony.

Trace Adkins poked fun at fellow country singer Blake Shelton's highly-publicised love life when he was honoured as one of the CMT Artists of the Year on Wednesday night (02Dec15).

The Boys 'Round Here hitmaker was one of the five artists recognised for dominating the country industry this year (15), and Trace presented his friend with the accolade, but not before taking a quick shot at Blake's personal life, including his divorce from Miranda Lambert and new romance with his The Voice co-star Gwen Stefani.

"I've known Blake personally and professionally for 15 years or so," Trace said. "And his rise to fame has really been incredible to watch. He has been named the CMA Male Vocalist of the Year five times. He has had four albums reach the top of the chart. 15 number one singles in a row. On top of all that, he has still got his day job on The Voice. Not a whole lot this guy can't do, other that keep his love life private. There's no doubt about that."

"I didn't write that, by the way," Trace clarified.

Good sport Blake acknowledged his roller coaster year during his acceptance speech, saying, "Let me just say that I want to thank my label and thank my entire team. There's too many people to stand up here and name, but more importantly, I want to say that this has been a crazy year, from the way it started to how it's ending so awesome for me. This is a great way to end it for me. Thank you so much."

Country stars Darius Rucker and Blake's former The Voice contestants Cassadee Pope and Raelynn joined forces to sing Blake's hit Neon Light to pay tribute to their friend.

In addition to Blake, Little Big Town, Sam Hunt, Luke Bryan and Florida Georgia Line were also named CMT Artists of the Year during the ceremony at Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Center.

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