Breakout country star Eric Church leads the pack in this year’s CMA Awards nominations, receiving an astonishing five nods. Now the singer has issued a statement about the exciting news, saying, “I’m truly speechless.”

The ‘Drink in My Hand’ hitmaker is nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year, and his platinum-selling ‘Chief’ received a nod for Album of the Year. Additionally, his No. 1 hit single ‘Springsteen’ is nominated in the categories of Single of the Year, Song of the Year, and Music Video of the Year.

Ironically, the entertainer lost his cellphone while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico during a well-deserved break last week, and when he returned to Nashville on Wednesday, he was unaware of the good news awaiting him. Church’s management whisked him to their office upon his arrival home, where they projected the CMA’s press release on an oversized screen and waited for Church’s reaction.

“I really don’t even know what to say!” the singer said first. “I’m still a little bit in shock… I’m truly speechless. I think it’s a testament to the fans that believed in the music… loved the music… and told people about the music because otherwise we don’t really have the track record to be the most nominated at this point in our career. I think that it’s truly because of the fans… they did something I think is going to be judged as pretty special.”

As a special thank you to his most loyal fans, Church recorded a special video address that went out exclusively to Church Choir members on Wednesday. The singer is slated to kick off the fall leg of his ongoing Blood, Sweat & Beers Tour in Amherst, Mass. on Sept. 13, and has announced that he will release his first-ever live album in 2013.

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