Could a pop song win a CMA? Song categories are a hard bet

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Could a pop song win a CMA? Song categories are a hard bet
FILE - In this April 15, 2018 file photo, Tyler Hubbard, right, and Brian Kelley, left, of Florida Georgia Line, and Bebe Rexha, center, perform "Meant to Be" at the 53rd annual Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas. The song is nominated for single of the year for the Country Music Association Awards. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The midterm elections are over, but the contest for the year’s best country songs is just around the corner at the Country Music Association Awards.

The two categories, song and single of the year, look similar with three songs nominated in both, but the writers behind the hits say these awards are hard to predict.

Nominees include Bebe Rexha and Florida Georgia Line’s “Meant to Be,” a pop song that became a monster country hit; country songs that went pop like Dan + Shay’s “Tequila” and Sam Hunt’s “Body Like a Back Road”; a message song for the #MeToo era and of course, drinking songs.

Songwriter-producer and nominee Shane McAnally called the song of the year category a five-way race with no clear leader.

The CMA Awards will air live on Nov. 14.