Garth Brooks has reflected on his decision to pull his name out of consideration for Entertainer of the Year at the 2020 CMA Awards. The country music superstar faced serious backlash on social media back in November when he took home the honor, since many fans believed Carrie Underwood deserved it.
Speaking on People (the TV Show!) with Nancy O’Dell, Garth recalled how he was attacked by angry fans on social media, which is what led him to pull his name from consideration.
“We got killed pretty bad last time we won here,” he said of the intense response.
“There’s one [tweet in] particular that I loved that said, I love you to death but don’t you just think it’s time that…'” he continued.
Nancy showed Garth a few of the angry tweets that rolled in after his win, to which Garth admitted that it was actually his first opportunity to see them all together.
“I keep looking, I’ve never seen them,” he said.
He was asked if seeing the messages from upset fans hurt him, but admitted that they don’t.
“I don’t think it hurts at all. They’re not saying they don’t love ya, they’re saying ‘Hey, don’t you think it’s time?'” the “Friends in Low Places” singer admitted.
“Love everybody, hug everybody and be known as ‘the guy who got to win it this many times,'” he added.
Prior to his win in 2019, Garth won the coveted Entertainer of the Year trophy, the most prestigious on offer at the show, in 1991, 1992, 1997, 1998, 2016, and 2017.
The “If Tomorrow Never Comes” hitmaker’s latest comments come two months after he made the surprising announcement that he didn’t want to be considered for the EOTY award at the CMAs again.
Per People, Garth said winning was actually “not that fun” because of the messages he received afterward. He said that he too expected the “Before He Cheats” singer, who also co-hosted the show, to take home her first one.
“I’m expecting to give a standing ovation to Carrie. I mean, this is her night,” he recalled during a press conference in July, adding that he felt “lost” when he had to give his acceptance speech.
Eric Church, Chris Stapleton, and Keith Urban were also nominated in 2019.
Garth couldn’t actually take his name off the ballot, though his plea to voters not to be nominated was successful. This year’s CMA EOTY contenders are Carrie, Eric, Keith, Luke Combs, and Miranda Lambert.