ACM Awards: Reba slams female country stars being overlooked at show as Dan + Shay, Keith Urban win big

Academy of Country Music Awards host Reba McEntire took a swipe at the show for failing to nominate a single female artist for the night's biggest honor, entertainer of the year, which ultimately went to Keith Urban.

Reba, who hosted the show for a 16th time, wasted no time pointing out the lack of female representation for the top honor in her opening monologue live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

"This is my 16th time hosting the show," Reba told a cheering crowd. "People always ask me, 'Do you ever get tired of doing it?' And I [say], 'Tired of celebrating great artists of music...tired of being in charge of the biggest night in country music?'

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Host Reba McEntire speaks at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas.

Host Reba McEntire speaks at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

"My name is Reba McEntire and I haven't been tired in 53 years. I'm a woman in the music business and we don't have time for tired," she declared.

But the red-headed singer wasn't done going after the show she was hosting.

McEntire pointed out that it snowed in Las Vegas in recent weeks before firing off: "It froze us women out of entertainer of the year. But you know what, that didn't bother Kacey Musgraves because she's been too busy carrying all her Grammys around." Musgraves later won album of the year for "Golden Hour."

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Keith Urban won entertainer of the year at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas.

Keith Urban won entertainer of the year at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

McEntire's criticism aside, it was Dan + Shay and Urban who walked away as the night's big winners.

The country music duo followed their first Grammy win for "Tequila" with multiple wins at the ACMs. Dan + Shay won duo of the year and single of the year for the crossover hit and "Tequila" also won song of the year for songwriters Dan Smyers, Jordan Reynolds and Nicolle Galyon (Shay Mooney didn't write the song).

Dan Smyers, left, and Shay Mooney, of Dan + Shay, pose in the press room with the awards for song of the year and single of the year for "Tequila," and duo of the year at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Dan Smyers, left, and Shay Mooney, of Dan + Shay, pose in the press room with the awards for song of the year and single of the year for "Tequila," and duo of the year at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

"I think somebody got the cards mixed up tonight," Smyers said onstage. "This is all incredible. We are all winners tonight."

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Even Thomas Rhett jokingly dedicated his male vocalist of the year trophy to Dan + Shay.

"I am going to five this to Dan + Shay so they can go home with four," he said.

Rhett also gave a shout-out to his wife who sat in the audience: "You are smoking hot tonight."

Thomas Rhett, left, and Lauren Akins arrive at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Thomas Rhett, left, and Lauren Akins arrive at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

While Dan + Shay won the highest number of awards, it was Urban who won top honor for entertainer of the year.

"Baby girl, I love you so much," Urban said, looking to his actress-wife, Nicole Kidman. "To the fans out there, you are amazing. You have no idea what you mean to me."

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Nicole Kidman, left, and Keith Urban arrive at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Nicole Kidman, left, and Keith Urban arrive at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Other memorable moments came when Miranda Lambert took the stage for the first time and seemingly shaded her ex-husband Blake Shelton by changing the lyrics of her song from "I live in Oklahoma" to "I get the hell out of Oklahoma."

She later joined George Strait for a duet. Ashley McBryde, who won new female artist of the year, also was notable: Nearly in tears, she strummed her guitar and beautifully sang "Girl Goin' Nowhere."

Miranda Lambert performs during the 54th Academy Of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 07, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Miranda Lambert performs during the 54th Academy Of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 07, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Jeff Kravitz/ACMA2019/FilmMagic for ACM)

Jason Aldean, who was honored with the Dick Clark Artist of the Decade Award, kicked off the awards show with a fun performance featuring hitmaking duo Florida Georgia Line. FGL's Tyler Hubbard wore a denim outfit featuring the American flag as he sang onstage with band member Brian Kelley and Aldean.

Brian Kelley, left, and Tyler Hubbard, right, of Florida Georgia Line, and Jason Aldean, center, perform "Can't Hide Red" at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas.

Brian Kelley, left, and Tyler Hubbard, right, of Florida Georgia Line, and Jason Aldean, center, perform "Can't Hide Red" at the 54th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Sunday, April 7, 2019, in Las Vegas. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

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Emmy-nominated "This Is Us" actress Chrissy Metz made her live singing debut and gave an emotional performance onstage, teary-eyed at the song's end. Metz sang "I'm Standing with You" from the upcoming film "Breakthrough," which she stars in. She was joined onstage by Carrie Underwood, Lauren Alaina, Mickey Guyton and Maddie & Tae — the performers all wore blue dresses and sang in unison.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.