Sugarland has won the CMA Duo of the Year trophy for the last five years, and they could get their sixth consecutive win in that category Thursday night. Back when they picked up their first CMA Award, Sugarland's Kristian Bush kept it proudly on his desk. He had to keep an eye out when his son Tucker, who was quite young at the time, wanted to play with the bullet-shaped trophy.
Kristian tells the story to ABC News Radio: "Tucker was like, 'That's a rocket dad! Can I play with your rocket?'And I saw crayon stuff on it, and I was just trying to like wipe it off, 'cause those things are kind of like plexiglass, glass-molded things."
Kristian had to lay down the law with Tucker about playing with the CMA trophy, saying, "Oh geez, Tucker. Do not .If you hit a Sharpie on that thing, I'm gonna get you my little one."
As Kristian's awards collection grew, he moved them to his studio to display them beside things like his favorite Chewbacca mug and his beloved Ripley's Believe It or Not book. Putting them out like that gives his friends a chance to actually pick the awards up.
"They want to see what it's like, which is interesting 'cause I had no idea," Kristian says. "Those things are heavy!"
Kristian will take part in the CMA Songwriters Series show with Brantley Gilbert Wednesday night in Nashville. He'll also present a trophy with his Sugarland duo partner Jennifer Nettles at Thursday night's CMA Awards.
Going to the CMAs is a lot of fun for Jennifer, who looks forward to reconnecting with some of her fellow artist friends backstage. She's also excited to see how the Duo of the Year category has expanded in the last few years. Sugarland is up against Thompson Square , Big & Rich , Love and Theft and the Civil Wars Thursday night, and Jennifer says of that lineup, "It's so interesting to me because it is also very broad and eclectic, and I love that about it."
Though Sugarland didn't release a new album this year, Jennifer thinks they still have a good shot at taking their sixth Duo of the Year trophy home Thursday night.
She says, "The In Your Hands tour went super well with the fans, and then I did Duets , so we've been doing a lot even though we didn't have a new album this year to promote. So, it'll be interesting to see how it all unfolds."
Jennifer will also host the CMA Country Christmas special taping Saturday night, and it will air later this Christmas season on ABC.
The 46th Annual CMA Awards broadcast live from Nashville Thursday night at 8 ET on ABC. Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley return for a fifth turn as hosts.
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