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Alan Jackson was honored with the Founders Award and Dierks Bentley was named Songwriter/Artist of the Year at tonight's (Sept. 14) 48th annual ASCAP Country Music Awards. The event was held at the War Memorial Auditorium in downtown Nashville.
ASCAP, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, collects performance royalties on behalf of its members. The writers of country music’s most performed songs for the period of April 2009 through March 2010 were honored before an audience of many of Nashville’s most distinguished songwriters, top country stars and music industry leaders.
In addition to Alan and Dierks, top honors went to Brett James, who was named Songwriter of the Year. Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now," which was co-written by Josh Kear, was deemed Country Song of the Year.
A total of 44 song honors were handed out while interspersed with special performances by the writers of the year’s top five most performed songs. Those performances included “Need You Now,” by Josh and Lady Antebellum; “Sideways,” by Dierks; “Alright,” performed by Darius Rucker and Frank Rogers; “Big Green Tractor," performed by David Lee Murphy; and “Gettin’ You Home,” by Chris Young.
A musical tribute to Alan included performances of several of his hits by Steve Earle, Dierks and Chris Young.