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Sara Evans has been climbing the charts and playing through your stereo speakers since the late 1990′s, and if there is one thing we can say about Evans, it is that nobody can slow her down. At a time where it seems that a lot of our favorite veteran female country singers are releasing new music, Evans is back with an album, Slow Me Down, that will not disappoint. With three duets (two of which might surprise you!) and several new solo tracks to introduce, Evans reminds us all why she entered the hearts of country music fans many years ago and why she has remained in our hearts since.
On this, Evans’ seventh studio album, the pristine artist proves that her music career remains full speed ahead. Slow Me Down kicks off with the chart-climbing title track, which talks about a relationship that is nearly over, but before one of them walks out the door, the other is given a final chance to hurry up and say the right thing. “Slow Me Down” is an appropriate start to this eclectic collection of tracks because, right from the beginning of this album, Evans hits the ground running with potential hit after hit.
If you have been lucky enough to attend a live show by Dan + Shay, you know that this duo is incredibly talented and their harmonies are nothing short of heavenly. With their first single, “19 You + Me,” flying up the charts, Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney are ready to take on the album charts with their debut project. After seeing what these two have to offer their live audiences, we couldn’t be more excited to hear what the talented duo has in store for us!
Dan + Shay’s debut album, Where It All Began, will be released April 1st on Warner Bros. Records and will contain the following tracks:
We are only eight days away from the release of Jo Dee Messina’s new album, Me. Where did the time go?! With only two Mondays left before the release, we have three tracks left to get you excited for before the album officially drops. This week we want to introduce you to “Strong Shot of You” and “Love on a Maybe,” which are two more tracks on Me that will have you dancing in the driver’s seat of your car.
“Strong Shot of You” may have lyrics that are classified as “typical country” because you could get drunk if you imbibe the beverages mentioned in the first verse; however, the song itself is anything but. “Strong Shot of You” actually trades in the booze for a man, as Jo Dee orders up “those burnin’ kisses that go down easy” and “a hit of your love, just a little buzz in your ninety proof” from her bartender. While Jo Dee sings about how tipsy she already is from this man’s kind of lovin’, she certainly does not shy away from placing the order again … and again. This song is one that you will blast as you are getting ready to go out for a night on the town and stands out from the rest of the album, as it borders the more modern country rock that is so prevalent on today’s radio, while maintaining Jo Dee’s signature sound.
“Love on a Maybe” slows things down a bit … until the chorus, where you can’t help but bob your head and dance to the beat. When I heard the lyrics to this song, I said out loud to my co-worker, “ugh, sounds like my life!” and I am confident that many of you out there will relate. “Love on a Maybe” tells the story of a relationship where every time they get close, the man pulls away, leaving her wondering where exactly they stand. Then, without fail, he comes back around as if he never strayed. In this song, Jo Dee finally puts her foot down and tells him that the back and forth needs to stop and he is either in or he’s out, and if he’s in, it is about time he proves it! Jo Dee sings, “Can’t come back around, can’t come back around, getting my hopes up, just to tear them down. I, I don’t need you for a minute, don’t stand there tellin’ me you’re in it, ’cause I need you to show me you won’t leave me hangin’, no. I can’t give, give up my love, no, I can’t give my love on a maybe.” This song sends a message of independence and confidence, and tells women not to allow the uncertainty of men’s minds to control their hearts. Message received, Jo Dee!
Image courtesy of Team Jo Dee Messina
In case you were counting, June 3rd is 85 days away. That means we only have to wait 85 more days for new music from Miranda Lambert, as her highly-anticipated album, Platinum, hits stores that day. It may seem like a ways away, but the album will be Miranda’s fifth and comes over two and a half years after her last record.
“From the day you kinda go I need to start looking for songs and writing songs, it feels like no matter how much time you have, you’re rushed,” Lambert said to ABC NEWS. “And so I didn’t want to rush it at all. To me it’s all about timing and making sure that you can feel like you can finally sit there and go, OK, the album’s done, and never have a moment where you go, I wish we could change that or I wish we had a different song.”
The album will feature 16 new tracks, and continue her expansion across genre and subject matters. To Lambert, it’s a collection of tracks that reflect her current life, as fans have already heard on the first-single “Automatic.” Country fans are also in for a girl-power treat when Lambert pairs with fellow blonde bombshell, Carrie Underwood, on “Something Bad.”
“We’re really rocking in country music and we’re coming together as a force,” Lambert says of the duet.. “To me, like, if you’re sitting on the front row, you might want to scoot back. It’s a force. It just feels exciting to me. I’m ready to rock.”
In today’s country music, it is common to find new artists putting a pop/rock twist on tracks, sometimes blurring the lines between what is truly defined as country music and what is more often referred to as “Top 40.” Enter Ross Cooper, a native-born Texan who couldn’t have the heels of his cowboys boots dug deeper into classic country in every sense of the word.
Ross grew up in a rodeo family, so, naturally, he became involved with rodeo at a young age. However, his mother, albeit a rodeo lover herself, was also involved in music. Growing up, Ross’s mother had a guitar, but, for some unknown reason, he (like many kids) took piano lessons. Finally, Ross reached the end of his rope with the piano, put his cowboy boot down and told his mother he wasn’t playing piano any longer and wanted to take guitar lessons instead.
Once his mother agreed to let Ross make the instrument switch, he also began writing songs. The first song Ross wrote was when he was ten years old and it was with his mother on piano, and, admittedly, the song was “terrible.” In junior high, Ross decided he wanted to start a band, “because that’s what you do!” and he got together with a few friends, one of whom’s mother owned a local blues bar. The group would sneak into the bar and play their Sunday night jams. By the time the group entered high school, they had a well-groomed band.
While Ross was making music with his friends, he was also becoming more and more involved with the rodeo. Ross was a bucking horse bareback rider through high school and even quit football during his sophomore year to focus on riding. He continued on this path through college and then started to pro rodeo. In an unfortunate twist of fate, Ross tore his knee, not once, but twice, and was required to take time off from rodeoing. At that point, he had to figure out what path to take moving forward, as he was still playing music regularly. “Music kinda filled the gap, so much to the point that I had to make a choice between the two. So, here I am.”
Multi-platinum selling recording artist, Sara Evans, is set to release her highly anticipated seventh studio album, Slow Me Down, on March 11th. Starting today, fans can stream the full album exclusively at saraevans.CMT.com and on the recently launched CMT Artists App. The album is also available for pre-order at http://smarturl.it/itunesslowmedown and fans will instantly receive a copy of the title track “Slow Me Down,” which is steadily climbing the charts.
Slow Me Down comes over two years after the release of Stronger, Evans’ second Billboard Country Album Chart #1. Slow Me Down is Sara Evans at her finest, with her signature powerful vocals that will serve as a reminder of why she has had a level of success reserved for few. Evans co-wrote three of the album’s eleven tracks and some of Nashville’s finest songwriters are represented on the album. Slow Me Down includes Evans collaborating on three tracks: “Better Off” with country legend Vince Gill; “Can’t Stop Loving You” a duet with Isaac Slade of The Fray; and a cover of Gavin DeGraw’s “Not Over You,” which features Gavin singing harmonies. This album is what fans have waited for and newcomers are bound to fall in love with.
For more official Sara Evans news go to www.saraevans.com.
We are finally into March … You know what that means? It is the month of Jo Dee Messina‘s album release, and it’s about darn time! We have been loving every moment of providing you all with our weekly reviews of tracks on the upcoming album, Me, and we are especially excited to tell you about “Like a Kid Again.”
While there are some deep, emotional songs on Me, other songs are more carefree and light. “Like a Kid Again,” though it can definitely cause you to sit back and evaluate how fast your life seems to fly by, is the type of song that also makes you want to let loose, be young and free, and just enjoy the moments before they pass. As adults, we all experience the burden of adulthood, whether it is the stresses of work, the responsibility of paying bills, or the roller coaster ride that is raising children of our own. Some days, don’t you just want to be silly and free, just like you were able to before being a grown up meant all of these things?
Fans of the short-lived game Flappy Bird will love Dierks Bentley’s version of the game dubbed RISER BIRD. The game replaces the little yellow flapping bird with the thunderbird image that has grown to represent Bentley’s current project.
“There are so many addicting games about birds right now, and we thought it would be funny to create our own RISER BIRD game,” explains Bentley. “I’m all about finding interesting ways to get music out to the fans, and this is just supposed to be fun.”
The game is available online in celebration of Bentley’s album RISER, released on Tuesday. Not only can fans enjoy playing the game, but they can also preview Bentley’s new music while playing.
With all this fun, the game could easily become another one of those addicting bird games Bentley described. Good thing too because gamers are eligible for some awesome prizes! One grand prize winner will win a trip to attend Bentley’s RISER TOUR rehearsal in Nashville, while five additional fans will win autographed copies of RISER.
Photo courtesy of Dierks Bentley’s official website
We are getting close, folks! As more information (and a new single/music video) begins to emerge, the March 18th release of Jo Dee Messina‘s album, Me, is drawing closer and closer. Can you feel the excitement?!
We were recently able to catch up with Jo Dee, and she specifically mentioned our next featured track from Me due to its pop roots that stray from the pure country sound you may be accustomed to from this country starlet. The track, aptly titled “I’m Free,” celebrates complete abandonment from something/someone who is weighing you down. As you know, Jo Dee broke the chains that bound her to her former record label and has since experienced more freedom with her musical and career choices.
In the first verse, Jo Dee sings “You tried with all your might, you had to have control. You held on so tight, you almost crushed my soul. And now I’m breaking from these chains, not looking back again.” While some may relate this song to a former relationship, others may apply the lyrics to other situations when they have felt as though they were stuck with no escape. Regardless of what you hear when you listen to this song, the beauty of this track (and all of the others from this album) is that its message is something to which everybody can relate. The chorus of this song proudly boasts “Hey, look at me now I’m flying, ’cause you ain’t got the best of me. Yeah, these wings will take me higher than you thought I’d ever be. Look at me, I’m free.” This track truly mirrors Jo Dee’s place in her career and does so in the most empowering of ways.
“I’m Free” is somewhat unique to Jo Dee’s usual sound, as it is closer to pop rock than country, made especially apparent by the stellar electric guitar arrangement in the bridge of the song. Make no mistake though … a slight stray from a normal sound does not mean a stray from the sensational vocals with which fans have fallen in love. Jo Dee’s voice in this song is as effortless and flawless as you would expect from this artist who is an expert in her craft. “I’m Free” proves that this singer/songwriter can conquer anything she puts her heart, mind, and soul into, and this opinion will surely be echoed by fans as they listen to Me from front to back.
Image courtesy of Jo Dee Messina