The performing rights organization ASCAP celebrated the top songs, songwriters, and publisher of the year Monday night in Nashville.  

Dozens of artists, songwriters and superstars came out for the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers awards. The 56th annual awards were filled with surprises and performances. 

Southern rockers Cadillac Three kicked off the ceremony with, “Hard Out Here for a Country Boy.” 

The top three songs of the year; “Body Like a Back Road,” “Small Town Boy” and “What Ifs” were all performed at the event. Sam Hunt’s “Body Like a Back Road” took home Song of the Year. 

There was also a special tribute to Lee Ann Womack who received the prestigious ASCAP Golden Note Award. The award is given to artists who have achieved extraordinary milestones in their careers and she was all the talk on the red carpet. 

“I will say every note she sings is golden, literally. She is like one of the best singers ever,” 
country duo Brothers Osborne said. 

“Lee Ann Womack is an incredible singer, she always chose great songs, her voice it’s just unbelievable and she really carried the torch for that more traditional sound,” explained Dierks Bentley. 

Among her many accolades, Womack has earned six CMA Awards, five ACM Awards and a Grammy.  

“I feel like I’ve reached a point in my career where sometimes I look around and go, well, what do I need to do now, you know. So, it’s so great ASCAP recognizes people in this way. I’m really happy,” expressed Womack.  

Ashley Gorley won ASCAP Songwriter of the Year for the sixth time in his career, Brett Young took home Songwriter-Artist of the Year, while Warner Chappell Music received Publisher of the Year.