Old Dominion Tribute Alabama as They Claim Their Fifth CMA Trophy for Vocal Group of the Year
2022 has brought several monumental losses in country music, and as they claimed their fifth Vocal Group of the Year award at the 2022 CMAs on Wednesday night (Nov. 9), Old Dominion had Alabama — and co-founding band mate Jeff Cook, who died just a couple of days before the ceremony — on their minds.
From the stage, Old Dominion frontman Matthew Ramsey spoke about how essential Alabama has been to the band format within country music.
"We've lost a lot of legends," he explained. "But no one would be in this category without Alabama. And we have lost Jeff Cook."
Backstage in the press room the group expounded on how Alabama impacted their music and shaped their early days as country fans.
"Alabama is a big part of all our childhood," said Ramsey. "Just really, in the fabric of country music. Everyone who is an artist out there right now — I don't think there's anyone who will argue with that statement — they absolutely broke total new ground."
Alabama and Old Dominion share significant common ground — Old Dominion even works with some of the team members that formerly worked with Alabama, Ramsey says — and the legendary act provides them with a blueprint for how to be a successful, impactful band in the country format.
"When you're a band in this genre, you can't help but look to them for examples of the right way to do things," he concludes. "A massive, massive band who shaped country music and changed the direction of it. [We] wouldn't be here without them."