Maren Morris paid an emotional tribute to late producer Busbee as she collected her Country Music Association (CMA) Award for Album of the Year at the ceremony on Wednesday night.
The 29-year-old singer struggled to hold back tears as she accepted the prize for her chart-topping record Girl. She first thanked those who had an input on the album, before going on to honour Busbee, who passed away in September.
"I would be really remiss if I didn't mention a huge facet of why this album sounds the way it does and we miss him so dearly," she said. "He texted me the morning we got the nomination for album of the year this year - and we were so excited - and that's our friend Busbee."
The Grammy-nominated songwriter and producer's wife Jess was in the audience at the awards, with Maren addressing her as she continued: "Thank you so much for sharing your husband with us once a month. My heart just goes out to you and your beautiful daughters. I hope when they listen to this record or any of the songs that he made that made us all better, they know how amazing their father was."
Maren wasn't the only star to pay tribute to Busbee, real name Michael James Ryan, at Wednesday night's awards. Blake Shelton, who won the Single Of The Year gong for God's Country, also remembered the late producer, as well as singer Earl Thomas Conley, who died in April - dedicating his prize to both of his late pals.
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