Tag Archives: Zac Brown Band

Review: Levi Lowrey’s Self-Titled Album

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From the moment you begin track one, it becomes apparent that Levi Lowrey‘s self-titled album isn’t your typical type of modern country, and that’s okay. What quickly exposes itself is a polished and well thought out album that is as much of a lyrical triumph as it is a musical one. If you’re looking for songs about cold beer, cut-off jeans or tailgates, you’re in the wrong place. However, if you’re looking for substance and songs that touch on deeper issues of faith (“That Is All,” “I’ve Held the Devil’s Hand), family (“Urge for Leaving”) and things like the status quo (“Barely Getting By”), look no further than Levi Lowrey.

Levi is one of the mega-talents signed to Zac Brown‘s Southern Ground Artists and a co-writer on the ZBB hit “Colder Weather.” Additionally, this album was executive produced by Zac Brown, but aside from some formidable fiddling and an incredible beard, don’t expect a ZBB copycat here. The album kicks off with the up-tempo country-rock groove of “Picket Fences” that sets an immediate tone. The musical journey then weaves through incredible highs and lows, Levi’s voice ranging from impressive grit and gruff to soulfully soothing and warm, before concluding with an impressive cover of Black Sabbath’s “War Pigs” that would make Ozzy proud.

Levi Lowrey Announces Tour & Launches Album Pre-Order

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Although you may not yet recognize the name Levi Lowrey, we’re positive that you’ve heard a song he had a hand in crafting. He was a co-writer on the Zac Brown Band‘s mega-hit “Colder Weather” and is preparing to release his self-titled, sophomore album February 25, 2014  through Zac Brown’s Southern Ground Artists.

The album was executive produced by Zac Brown at Southern Ground Studios in Nashville and includes a laundry list of talented collaborators and musicians including Clay Cook (Zac Brown Band), fiddler Ross Holmes (Mumford & Sons/Cadillac Sky), Oliver Wood (The Wood Brothers) and performer, producer and Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee Mac McAnally. The album was co-produced by Clay Cook and Matt Mangano, with the entire thing recorded from start to finish in two weeks.

Pre-order is now available through iTunes.

In addition to releasing his new album in February, Lowrey will be touring, both on his own and as an opener for the Zac Brown Band in arenas across the midwest and the south. Notable dates include two nights in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic for “Sun, Sand & Southern Ground” at the Hard Rock Hotel, and album release concerts in Atlanta  (2/25) and in Nashville  (2/27). 

CMA Awards Favorite Moments

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Another CMA Awards night has come and gone, but certain moments left lasting impressions on our staff. If you follow us on Twitter, you know we spent the majority of the show cracking on Sheryl Crow‘s hair, Dolly Parton‘s assets, Zac Brown Band‘s beards, and Kacey Musgraves‘ b****y resting face. While those particular things set the stage for our jokes, puns, and #sarcastictweets, our staff compiled a list of our other favorite moments of the night. The following are those award show memories that are ingrained in our minds:

Keepin’ It Country’s CMA Predictions

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The CMA’s are upon as once again, so the Keepin’ It Country Staff narrowed down our picks for the night’s biggest awards. Let us know who you agree with!

Entertainer of the Year Nominees: Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton, George Strait, Taylor Swift

Nicole: It’s not an easy choice here, and there’s definitely the obvious inclusion of George Strait for sentimental reasons, but I have to give this to Blake. He played a huge summer tour, anchors the judging panel on The Voice season after season and put out quite a few huge hits. He’s arguably the biggest thing in country right now so I have to give it to him.

Jessica: Luke Bryan has had a huge year, and I think he’s taken one of the top spots in country music right now. You can’t deny those dance moves!

Jennifer: Luke Bryan – With sold out shows across the country and yet another #1 hit song (despite Zac Brown’s disdain for said song), no one is killing it on radio or on the road quite like Luke.

Jeanna: Blake Shelton or Taylor Swift? Both have really helped broaden the country music audience and impact the genre in such a significant way. Taylor is massive with her sold out tours worldwide and cross-over success. Blake is the face of the genre at the present time, and he has helped put country on the map and bring it to focus with The Voice. Luke Bryan had a big year and is a possibility too. However, I feel like it’s Blake’s time for this right now so I’m giving this one to him.

CMA Award Nominees list

Brad Paisley & Carrie Underwood. photo credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC.

The official nominees for the 47th annual Country Music Association (CMA) Awards were announced live this morning on ABC’s Good Morning America. As a CMA Member, I was lucky enough again this year to vote in the first two rounds and got a choice in the final nominees. I’ll get to vote for the winners of each category as an industry member as well.

There were some surprises, and some regulars, who made it to the final ballot this year. Check out the full list below and let us know what you think of this year’s nominees – do you think someone was snubbed? What shocked you? Who are you cheering for?

Entertainer Of The Year

JASON ALDEAN

LUKE BRYAN

BLAKE SHELTON

GEORGE STRAIT

TAYLOR SWIFT

Male Vocalist Of The Year

JASON ALDEAN

LUKE BRYAN

ERIC CHURCH

BLAKE SHELTON

KEITH URBAN

 Female Vocalist Of The Year

KELLY CLARKSON

MIRANDA LAMBERT

KACEY MUSGRAVES

TAYLOR SWIFT

CARRIE UNDERWOOD

New Artist Award

LEE BRICE

BRETT ELDREDGE

FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE

KIP MOORE

KACEY MUSGRAVES

Vocal Duo Of The Year

BIG & RICH

FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE

LOVE AND THEFT

SUGARLAND

THE CIVIL WARS

THOMPSON SQUARE

Vocal Group Of The Year

THE BAND PERRY

ELI YOUNG BAND

LITTLE BIG TOWN

LADY ANTEBELLUM

ZAC BROWN BAND

 Album Of The Year

“Blown Away” – CARRIE UNDERWOOD

“Red” – TAYLOR SWIFT

“Tornado” – LITTLE BIG TOWN

“Based On A True Story” – BLAKE SHELTON

“Same Trailer Different Park” – KACEY MUSGRAVES

Single Of The Year

“Cruise” – FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE

“Highway Don’t Care” – TIM McGRAW and TAYLOR SWIFT

“Mama’s Broken Heart” – MIRANDA LAMBERT

“Wagon Wheel” - DARIUS RUCKER

“Merry Go ‘Round” – KACEY MUSGRAVES

Song Of The Year

“I Drive Your Truck” – LEE BRICE

“Mama’s Broken Heart” – MIRANDA LAMBERT

“Merry Go Round” – KACEY MUSGRAVES

“Pontoon” – LITTLE BIG TOWN

“Wagon Wheel” – DARIUS RUCKER

Musical Event Of The Year

“Don’t Rush” – KELLY CLARKSON and VINCE GILL

“The Only Way I Know” – JASON ALDEAN, LUKE BRYAN and ERIC CHURCH

“Boys Round Here” – BLAKE SHELTON and PISTOL ANNIES

“Cruise” – FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE and NELLY

“Highway Don’t Care” – TIM McGRAW and TAYLOR SWIFT

Video Of The Year

“Tornado” – LITTLE BIG TOWN

“Blown Away” – CARRIE UNDERWOOD

“Boys ‘Round Here” – BLAKE SHELTON

“Downtown” – LADY ANTEBELLUM

“Highway Don’t Care” – TIM McGRAW and TAYLOR SWIFT

“Mama’s Broken Heart” – MIRANDA LAMBERT

 Musician Of The Year

SAM BUSH – Mandolin

PAUL FRANKLIN – Steel Guitar

DAN HUFF - Guitar

MAC McANALLY – Guitar

BRENT MASON – Guitar

ACM Poll: Vocal Group of the Year

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It’s ACM madness…

Up next is our poll for “Vocal Group of the Year.” Reigning champs, Lady Antebellum, are back along with The Band Perry, Eli Young Band, Little Big Town, and Zac Brown Band. Who’s your pick?

ACM: Vocal Group of the Year

  • Little Big Town (30%, 50 Votes)
  • Lady Antebellum (28%, 47 Votes)
  • The Band Perry (23%, 38 Votes)
  • Zac Brown Band (13%, 22 Votes)
  • Eli Young Band (6%, 9 Votes)

Total Voters: 166

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John Fogerty and Miranda Lambert Collaborate On “Wrote A Song For Everyone”

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Southern rock legend and Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman, John Fogerty, teamed up with several country superstars for his upcoming album, Wrote A Song For Everyone. The record features some of our favorite artists collaborating with Fogerty on his classic hits.

One of his special guests is country’s beloved female, Miranda Lambert. She joined the project after Fogerty slipped her a note at an event and asked Lambert to lend her voice for the title track.

Lambert grew up listening to CCR and was honored to work with Fogerty, whom she calls “rock royalty.” Because of her high regard for him, Lambert was nervous walking into the studio but she says Fogerty is so nice and normal (besides the fact that he is a rock star, of course). She went on to say that “cool is the word for him.”

Lambert dubbs Fogerty and CCR’s music “timeless” spanning and bridging generations. I would definitely have to agree with her!

Check out the video below to see what Miranda had to say about the whole experience and also view behind the scenes with Lambert and Fogerty. You can also hear snippets of the song in the background.

Other country artists included on the star-studded project are Brad Paisley, Keith Urban, Zac Brown Band, and Alan Jackson. The album is set to be released on May 28th. You can pre-order your copy on iTunes or Amazon today!

 

Grammy Recap: Our Favorite Moments

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The 55th Annual Grammy’s took place on Sunday, February 10th and our favorite country artists were well-represented with performances and more. It was impossible to pick a favorite moment, so we picked a few of the best…

Taylor Swift Brings in the Clowns: We’ve never been asked to open the Grammys (or much more than our own mail), but we’d assume it’s a big responsibility that comes with a ton of pressure. With her genre-bending, Alice-in-Wonderland-themed opener, Taylor Swift set the tone for a night of unforgettable performances with her hit about never, ever, ever, EVER getting back together. Although she nabbed a Grammy in the pre-telecast for her collaboration with the Civil Wars, it was her performance that had everyone buzzing. Most notably, there was that moment when she pulled her best Madonna, suddenly acquiring a British accent. Although much has been made about what that meant, we here at Keepin’ It Country have decided it could’ve only been aimed in one direction…

POLL: Grammy – Best Country Album

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It’s time for our poll for the last country music category… Best Country Album!

Make sure you vote in our other Grammy polls as well, and check back later to see the results!

The Grammys air on Sunday night at 8 p.m. EST. on CBS. Good luck to all the nominees! We’ll be watching.

Grammy: Best Country Album

  • Four The Record - Miranda Lambert (68%, 23 Votes)
  • Living For A Song: A Tribute To Hank Cochran - Jamey Johnson (12%, 4 Votes)
  • Uncaged - Zac Brown Band (9%, 3 Votes)
  • Hunter Hayes - Hunter Hayes (9%, 3 Votes)
  • The Time Jumpers - The Time Jumpers (2%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 34

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Miami Has Gone Country

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As many of you know, we are just moments away from kickoff at the BCS National Championship game between Number 1 Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Number 2 University of Alabama Crimson Tide. As you also know (if you are avid readers of our blog — and we know you are!), the Zac Brown Band will be leading the crowd in the National Anthem just prior to the beginning of this highly-coveted event. However, the boys of the Zac Brown Band aren’t the only country boys helping celebrate the big game! Dierks Bentley lent his talents to last night’s fan experience, along side Flo Rida, while Luke Bryan entertained the game-goers today at SunLife Stadium (home of the Miami Dolphins) at the Bud Light Game Day Fan Zone!

Miami, Florida is buzzing with excitement and some of our favorite country boys are there to enjoy the fun! Don’t forget to tune in to catch the Zac Brown Band … you may catch a glimpse of some other country music spectators as well! The game begins at 8:00 p.m. EST on ESPN. Tune in now! And, have I said “Roll Tide” lately? Oh yeah, I think I have …