Monthly Archives: July 2013

CMA Songwriters Series returning to Chicago

Kristian Bush of Sugarland.

After a successful night this week in Boston with Miranda Lambert and Kip Moore, the Country Music Association’s (CMA) Songwriter Series will be returning back to Chicago! The new edition, which will take over the popular Joe’s Bar in downtown Chicago on August 1st, will feature hit songwriters Matraca Berg, Sugarland‘s Kristian Bush, and Bobby Pinson. Bob DiPiero will once again serve as the evening’s host.

The event features an intimate, acoustic round-table like setting where each songwriter will take turns sharing the stories behind the hit songs they’ve written and will perform the original versions. It’s a special one-of-a-kind chance for country fans to hear some of the biggest songs in country music from before they were hits.

The event is a pretty exciting one for Kristian, who shares:

“The thing I love most about the CMA Songwriters Series is watching the audience discover new things about songs they’ve known for years. I know I’ve learned more about the songwriting process just by sitting next to the amazing writers in this series. As a bonus, I also love Chicago and Joe’s Bar — I remember the first time I played there and I look forward to playing there again in August, it’s going to be another great night.”

Tickets will go on-sale later today for an early bird price of $15 through joesbar.com. The special price will be in effect until tomorrow (Saturday).

Martina McBride teams up with Pandora Jewelry

martina mcbride

Country superstar Martina McBride has partnered up with Pandora Jewelry for her upcoming concert appearances.  As part of their partnership deal, she’ll appear in print advertising in American and Canadian magazines such as Lucky, Canadian Living, Everyday Home, Style At Home, Fitness, and more. The brand will sponsor her upcoming concerts.

About her new partnership, Martina said:

“I am really excited to work with Pandora, a brand that celebrates the qualities that make a woman unique. As a busy working mom, I enjoy being on stage as well as the simple joy of laughing or spending a quiet moment with my daughters. Pandora offers unique jewelry that reflect special moments that I cherish.”

Pandora has designed a special page on their official website just for their partnership with the country star. Check out “Pandora Presents Martina McBride” right here and let us know what you think. You can enter the sweepstakes to win one of Martina’s Picks!

Country stars to replace Blair Garner

Blair Garner at the ACMs.

With popular radio host Blair Garner leaving his spot on the show he created “After Midnite,” some of country music’s brightest stars will be filling in. Blair will be moving on to a brand new spot with New York City’s NASHFM. His final program date is July 31st for “After Midnite.”

Stars booked to perform fill-in duties throughout the month of August include Carrie Underwood, Jake Owen, Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, and Lady Antebellum‘s Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood.  The artists will take over for a week each through August. There will be a new host announced in August.

Blair will be hosting the morning show on NASHFM. Will you be tuning in?

Chris Young Reveals New Album Artwork & Track Listing

Chris-Young-AM

Chris Young‘s new album, A.M., won’t be in stores until September 17, but the “Aw Naw” hit-maker is anxious to share it with fans. He took to the Internet today to reveal the album cover and track list. “I couldn’t be more excited to share this with my fans,” admits Chris. “We just finished the cover last week and got the songs sequenced so this is truly ‘hot off the press.”

Six of the album’s tracks were co-written by Young, including the title track and the first single, “Aw Naw.” “There’s a lot of fun on this album and that’s why I wanted to call the album A.M.,” said Chris. “Like the song says, ‘the whole world’s asleep but we’re wide awake in the A.M.

The A.M. Track List is as follows:
1. Aw Naw – Chris Young/Chris DeStefano/Ashley Gorley
2. Hold You To It – Chris Young/Shane McAnally/Josh Osborne
3. Lonely Eyes – Johnny Bulford/Jason Matthews/Laura Veltz
4. Goodbye – Chris Young/Chris DeStefano/Ashley Gorley
5. A.M. – Chris Young/Chris DeStefano/Ashley Gorley
6. Nothin’ But The Cooler Left – Brandon Kinney/Cole Swindell/Michael Ray Carter
7. Who I Am With You – Marv Green/Jason Sellers/Paul Jenkins
8. Text Me Texas – Rhett Akins/Shane McAnally/Josh Osborne
9. We’re Gonna Find It Tonight – Chris Young/Rhett Akins/Chris DeStefano
10. Forgiveness – Casey Beathard/Scooter Carusoe
11. Lighters In The Air – Chris Young/Monty Criswell/Shane Minor

A.M. will be released September 17 and can be preordered now on Amazon. Catch him on-tour this summer, opening for Brad Paisley.

Scotty McCreery sued by former manager

Scotty McCreery.

Uh oh! Season 10 American Idol winner Scotty McCreery is being sued by his former manager, Todd Cassetty. Todd filed a lawsuit in Tennessee stating that the 19-year-old star has never paid him for his work or services rendered starting in October 2012.

Scotty isn’t taking the accusation lightly, saying in a statement:

“There is no truth to these allegations. I have offered to pay Todd more than once, but he wanted an unreasonable amount for only five months of work. Anyone who knows me knows how I conduct myself, so I am not worried they will believe any of this. This is just an attempt to embarrass me and my family. The facts will come out when we have our day in court.”

Scotty was signed to Todd as his first entertainment contract after Scotty had finished his post-Idol XIX Entertainment management contract. It happened around the same time as Scotty’s release of his Christmas album “Christmas with Scotty.”

The lawsuit claims that Scotty’s mother wrote an e-mail to Todd saying that he was “unofficially officially” Scotty’s new manager, and would be compensated with 15 to 20 percent – which is industry standard. Todd then says in the lawsuit that he only received 2 percent of gross revenue while under contract with Scotty. However, he was never given a written contract by Scotty or his mother.

Todd is seeking actual and punitive damages from Scotty, as well as covering his legal costs. He accuses the star of breach of contract and fraud. The lawsuit calls Scotty and Judith McCreery, as well as Scotty’s production company Blue Crew Productions Inc as the defendants in the case.

 

UPDATE: Randy Travis survives surgery

Randy Travis.

We have an update since news broke last night about Randy Travis. He’s survived emergency surgery to relieve pressure on his brain after suffering a stroke last night. The stroke was a complication from his congestive heart failure from his viral cardiomyopathy. Randy, 54, was showing signs of improvement before the stroke.

His doctors addressed the media still listing Randy in critical condition. His family and friends are continuing their vigil at The Baylor Heart Hospital in Plano, Texas and continue to thank fans and ask for more prayers and support.

Country stars have been sending their love to Randy through Twitter over the last few days:

Keith Urban: Sending healing strength and love to you this morning @randytravis -KU

Scotty McCreery:My thoughts and prayers are with @randytravis today. Praying for a great recovery for a true Country music and North Carolina legend!

Reba McEntire: Big prayers going up for Randy Travis.

Rodney Atkins: Just heard @randytravis had a stroke and is in surgery. Praying for Randy, the medical staff and his family. #PrayForRandy

We will continue to update fans as we get official news and statements.

Miranda Lambert’s CMA Songwriters Series to stream live tonight

Miranda Lambert.

Tonight’s CMA Songwriter Series featuring headliner Miranda Lambert will be streamed LIVE starting at 7:30 pm EST. The intimate, acoustic show will also feature hit songwriters Kip Moore and Brett James. Bob DiPiero will serve as the evening’s host live from Boston’s Royale Boston Nightclub.

Fans can tune in at CMASongwritersseries.com. The concert will feature all three artists and songwriters sitting round-table style as they share the stories behind their hit songs and perform them for the small crowd.

Will you be tuning in?

Randy Travis suffers stroke; in surgery

Randy+Travis+RandyTravisgreytshirt_25

A sad update tonight on the status of country icon Randy Travis. As a complication of his congestive heart failure, he has suffered a stroke, his publicist has told us, and is currently in surgery to relieve pressure on his brain. He remains in critical condition and his family is asking for prayers and support as they wait by his side at the Texas hospital.

We will continue to update you with official information as it becomes available.

Our thoughts and prayers remain with Randy, his friends, and his family.

George Strait releases new single I Believe

George Strait. Photo Credit: Kelley May

The King of Country Music will be taking over country radio again with his new single “I Believe.” The latest single from George Strait‘s new record “Love is Everything” is the follow-up to his 60th number one hit “Give It All We’ve Got Tonight.” He became the first artist in music history to get 60 career number one singles.

“I Believe” was co-written by George with his son, Bubba Strait, and Dean Dillion after watching the news coverage of the tragic school shooting in Newton last December. George lost a daughter at a young age and felt a special connection to the events and started to write the single, however, when he first was finishing the album he didn’t originally include the track. It was his wife, Norma, who got George to add the track to “Love is Everything.”

About the special connection to the song, George said:

“Like everybody, I was watching the coverage on TV. I know what these parents are going through. It’s the worst thing that can happen to you in your life. To lose a child….there’s nothing worse than that. So I started thinking about saying something about it.” He continues, “It’s a statement of faith, is really what it is. It turned out beautiful.”

Earlier this year Strait kicked off in high gear during the first leg of his The Cowboy Rides Away Tour. The tour earned Strait the title as the highest ranked country act on Pollstar’s 2013 Worldwide Tickets Chart, and he is expected to announce details and dates for the 2014 leg of his tour, kicking off early next year, later this fall.

For more information on Strait, Love Is Everything, The Cowboy Rides Away Tour and more, visit GeorgeStrait.com.

Loretta Lynn to host Gospel Music Festival

Loretta Lynn.

The hills will ring with the glorious sounds of Gospel music as Loretta Lynn welcomes fans to the inaugural “Loretta Lynn’s Gospel Music Festival” to be held at her Hurricane Mills, TN ranch September 28-29, 2013.

The Country music icon has a well-documented love of Gospel music and has consistently shared music of faith in her concerts and recordings. Now, for the first time, she welcomes the music to her home as the top acts in Gospel music plan to perform during the two-day inspirational event.

Loretta said:

“Its kind of like an old-time “all-day singing and dinner on the ground. I got to thinking. I have a big ranch where I live so I decided to throw a good ole Gospel weekend here! I want family and friends to bring a blanket, set up a picnic and then enjoy some of my favorite Gospel music singers! I may even come down and sing a song myself! I hope it will be something we can keep going every year. I already have a big campground and cabins where people can stay. We also have a big stage – we have concerts all summer and have done so since 1974.”

Scheduled to appear during the two-day event are Mark Lowry, The Hoppers, The Isaacs, Karen Peck & New River, Gold City, Rambo-McGuire, The Singing Cookes, The Freemans, Brian Free & Assurance, Michael Combs, Archie Watkins & Smoky Mountain Reunion, and The Sneed Family.

For those arriving early on Friday night, September 27, 2013, there will be a special bon-fire and sing-a-long beginning at 8:00 PM.

Loretta Lynn Gospel Music Festival Poster.

Loretta Lynn’s Gospel Music Festival poster.

“I should have started this years ago. But, it’s never too late – I am inviting everyone to my ranch to have a great ole Gospel time! It’ll be a fun time for the whole family. Speaking of family, I want to thank Jeff Sneed and The Sneed Family for helping me plan and promote this Gospel Music Festival. We sure are looking forward to this special time!”

Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, TN is the perfect destination for this amazing weekend of Gospel music. The full service RV park features primitive camping, pools, canoeing, paddle boats and more. Guests can also tour Loretta’s plantation home, the Butcher Holler Home Place, and her brand-new 18,000 square foot “Coal Miner’s Daughter” museum.

Tickets are on sale now and more information can be found online at LorettaLynn.com or by calling the ranch at 931-296-7700.