The 2018 Academy of Country Music Awards are still nearly three weeks away, but we already know the winners in the best new artist categories. Lauren Alaina has been named the New Female Vocalist of the Year, Brett Young the New Male Vocalist of the Year, and Midland the New Vocal Duo or Group of the Year.
The recipients, all of whom will also perform live at the ACM Awards show, found out from the host herself. That's right: Reba McEntire called each artist to personally deliver the news—and their reactions might move you to tears!
"You're gonna make me cry, now cut that out," McEntire told Alaina when she heard tears on the other line. "Honey, I'm so proud for you and Trisha [McClanahan, her manager] both. You both have worked so hard, and this is what our business needs—more like you."
Shaking and crying, the only words Alaina can muster up are, "I have to call my mom and my dad ... but I want to talk to you—you're Reba!"
The country singer was up against fellow artists Danielle Bradbery, Carly Pearce, and RaeLynn. Later, she shared more thoughts on Instagram:
"This is the best thing that has happened to me in my 'McEntire' life. Now that that's out of the way... oh my gosh. I won an ACM. AND called to tell me. I am so thankful and appreciative to everyone who voted for me and made this happen. I'm so thankful to be given the chance to make music with people I love and sing it to more people I love. Country music is my heart, and today my country-loving heart is exploding. Thank you to my team and the people in the trenches helping make this happen. I couldn't do it without my team. You know who you are. This award is for ALL of us."
The other videos are equally touching. The members of Midland couldn't believe it was "really Reba" on the phone, let alone that they won the award, beating out the other nominees, High Valley, Lanco, LOCASH, and Runaway June.
And Brett Young was nothing but grateful to hear of his recognition.
The competitors in his category were Kane Brown, Luke Combs, Devin Dawson, and Russell Dickerson.
Congratulations to the winners! Tune into CBS on Sunday, April 15 at 8 p.m. ET to see the rest of the show.