When Miranda Lambert finally won entertainer of the year for the first time at the 2022 ACM Awards on March 7, she clinched what the Academy of Country Music likes to call its “triple crown” – a win in the appropriate new artist category; in the appropriate male, female, duo or group category; and for entertainer of the year.
Lambert wasn’t present at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas to accept her entertainer of the year award in person, but she will be on hand to receive the Triple Crown Award at the 15th annual ACM Honors at the fabled Ryman Auditorium in Nashville on Aug. 24.
Merle Haggard was the first artist to meet the three-pronged criteria to receive the Triple Crown award back in 1971 – though the ACM didn’t come up with the bright idea to present Triple Crown winners with a new award until 2005, when they notified the six artists who had qualified for the award by that point – Hag, Mickey Gilley, Barbara Mandrell, Brooks & Dunn, The Chicks and Kenny Chesney.
The awards have presented in a variety of ways over the years. Reba McEntire presented Mandrell with her Triple Crown award in 2005 at the 40th ACM Awards. Darius Rucker presented Gilley with his award in 2015 at an ACM event leading up to the 50th ACM Awards.
Carrie Underwood received her award on the ACM Awards telecast in 2010. Like Lambert, Jason Aldean received his at the ACM Honors (in 2016). The ACM plans to make these presentations at the ACM Honors going forward.
Two acts, The Chicks and Keith Urban, have qualified for the award but have yet to formally receive it. The ACM is waiting for the right occasion to make the presentation.
The artists who have qualified for the Triple Crown are nearly evenly divided between male artists and groups/duos (five) and female artists and groups/duos (four).
The only group to meet the criteria is The Chicks. The only duo to do so is Brooks & Dunn.
Here are the 10 artists who have qualified for the Triple Crown Award. They are listed in chronological order by the date they won the third of these awards and thus qualified for the award.
Note: The years shown are the years of the ACM telecasts where the various awards were presented. ACM records show the previous year, which they regard as the year of record. So Lambert won the 2021 entertainer of the year award in 2022. We’ll call that 2022.