Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Today's Country Tidbits

Sugarland will resume their tour with the show tomorrow night in Albequerque, New Mexico. To say they were shaken by the events of last Saturday night is to be guilty of understatement. Here's the text of their latest message on their website:

Dear Fans, Family and Friends,

We have taken a couple of days to try and even begin to emotionally process the magnitude and gravity of the tragedy in Indiana on Saturday. While the path to healing from this type of trauma and loss is long and winding, we wanted to reach out and update you on where we are and how we are.

We are in the process of planning a private memorial in Indiana, to honor those fans who died. We would first like to hold space so that their families can have time to go through their own services and memorials. Until that time we are holding vigil for them. We join them on their mourning benches. And we stand in the gap asking God to offer them peace and healing. For those suffering from injury we hold you up with prayers for complete healing of your own.

We are also addressing our own specific healing. Our road family experienced its traumas together. While we all scattered to our given families for their comfort, the trauma
we experienced together binds us in a unique way that we share only with each other, and those who were there. There is healing in our being together. There is healing in our working together. For this reason we are planning to get back on the road this weekend, beginning with our scheduled show in Albuquerque this Thursday, August 18th. The emotions have us yearning to be close to each other immediately. The logistics have us needing to replace all of our instruments and equipment. (The set is a loss that is insignificant in light of the tragedy.)

This Incredible Machine is more than a tour and more than a set. We have always celebrated music as a Healer. While music cannot change the events and losses at the Indiana State Fair, it can hopefully serve as a ritual and a balm to provide comfort and facilitate healing in this time of great sorrow. We hope to see you all soon.


Last night in Athens, GA, a benefit concert for two fallen police officers drew an all-star crowd for a guitar pull. Jason Aldean, Colt Ford, James Otto, Brantley Gilbert, Corey Smith, Rhett Akins, Dallas Davidson, Mike Dekel and Edwin McCain were all on stage raising money and raising the roof. No word on the amount brought in, but judging from all the tweets about it, we should all be sad today that we weren't there. I know I am!

Last week, Keith Urban helped a Knoxville woman become a homeowner through Habitat f
or Humanity and Anderson Cos. He played a private benefit concert for The Anderson Foundation, to raise money to build a house on Knoxville's Music Row. The event raised over a quarter of a million dollars, more than enough for the house and furnishings. The home's recipient, Regina Olum, moves in near homes dedicated to Martina McBride and Brooks & Dunn.

For the second week in a row, Lady Antebellum's new song, "Just a Kiss," sits at the top of the country charts. It's been certified platinum for a million downloads, and Hillary Scott says they knew they were onto something special the day they wrote it. “I’ll never forget the day we wrote our single, ‘Just a Kiss,’ because the guys were over at Dallas Davidson’s, in his writing room, and I was in the vocal booth actually singing a vocal on another one of the songs on the album. And so, Charles called and said, ‘Hillary, I know you’re singing, but you’ve got to get over here. We started something that we really think is special.’ And so I drove down Music Row and hopped in the writing room with the boys, and we wrote it and loved it.”

Pistol Annies, consisting of Miranda Lambert, Angaleena Presley and Ashley Monroe, are offering up free music this week as a preview to their album release this coming Tuesday. Plus, if you see a Miranda Lambert show, you're likely to see a Pistol Annies set of music. According to Miranda, “We’re hoping to tour on our own even maybe in December. But, you know it’s not that exhausting, believe it or not, because I’m already on tour. I’m already doing all this. I already have all my schedule laid out and now we just plugged in the Pistols with it. So, they’re on the road with me and we do a Pistol Annies set in the middle of my set and the logistics have worked out. It’s almost like the stars were aligned.”

Blake Shelton is in Cosmopolitan and Ladies Home Journal magaznes, talking about how he knew he found a keeper in Miranda Lambert, his biggest fears and his best grooming move.

You're about to start hearing of a new country artist, Eric Paslay, so let's start here. He's releasing a song called "Never Really Wanted" and is hoping that it will be as successful as some of his other songs. Whaaaa? He's already made quite a mark on Nashville as a songwriter. Jake Owen's current song, "Barefoot Blue Jean Night," was co-written by Eric, and he's pumped about who else has cut one of his tunes: “I’ve got a song on the next Lady Antebellum record called ‘Friday Night’ that’s coming out soon and I’m just pumped they recorded…they’re such a…I mean, they’re one of the biggest bands in the world right now.”

Road trip alert: Big & Rich will play a free show during Nashville's "Pickin' on the Patio" event on August 25th.
October 11 is a big day for Taylor Swift fans. Her first DVD, "Taylor Swift's Journey to Fearless" will be released, and in addition to concert footage from the Fearless tour, the set includes home movies and personal photos, and Taylor narrates the project.

Condolences to Joe Don Rooney on the loss of his big bag of wagging love, AKA Stevie Ray. The 170-pound Dogue de Bordeaux exited his life with the family on Monday. According to Joe Don, Stevie Ray Rooney was the "Sweetest dog ever put on this earth!"

The Band Perry is on Jimmy Kimmel Live tonight.

The tweet of the day is from Blake Shelton: "Quote of the day... "I get how funny you are... But when you're around stupid people... You ain't that funny"... - Neal McCoy"