Friday, September 28, 2012

Randy Houser and his wife Jessa welcomed their first child earlier this year and Randy says that fatherhood is changing him as a man, as a songwriter and as a performer: “I’m not gonna be a sippy cup country kinda guy, but there’s things I won’t say—I mean, I’m not out writing songs about ‘I’m going to pick up 15 women and we’re gonna get naked in the hot tub’ you know—it’s not gonna be any of that crap anymore!” Uh –huh – and you know that somewhere, someone’s got a bet down on when Randy Houser will include the words “sippy cup” in a song!

The names are being released, though we know it’s going to be a stellar line-up. Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood are hosting the CMA Awards on November first, and the first batch of performers announced are Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Kelly Clarkson and Little Big Town. Tickets go on sale at Ticketmaster outlets Saturday at 11am Eastern time.

Here’s something else we know – Reba won’t be co-hosting the ACM Awards in 2013. She’s bowed out of the role she’s had for 13 years, officially passing the torch to Blake Shelton, her co-host for the past two years. How does Blake feel about hosting for as many years as Reba has? “I can’t imagine doing it as long as Reba—the two I’ve done have taken years off my life!” He does also say, “I’ll be honest with you, I have as much fun hosting that thing as I do sittin’ in the audience and watching it and laughing along with whoever’s doing it, but it is fun!”

Lady Antebellum is touring Australia right now and have added a TV appearance to their itinerary: they’ll appear on the hit show, “X-Factor” for the top 10 finalist episode, set to air next week. They’ll be playing shows through Wednesday, when they wrap up the tour at the iconic Sydney Opera House.

Little Big Town tops the Billboard Country album chart with their new release, “Tornado.” That’s two weeks running that their sales have dominated country music, and they’re pleased with the success their unconventional recording method is reaping. Usually artists use session musicians, not their road band, when they record an album, but not this time. Phillip Sweet explains, “We would come in at night and record – and kind of like a live show with our band. We would be a little loose, having a good time – maybe have eaten a little dinner together. And just go in there and make music, hit record and that’s what happened.” Apparently magic happened, as they scored their first #1 song with the album’s first single, “Pontoon.”
Happy birthday to Karen Fairchild of Little Big Town.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

If you want to see a full-blown George Strait concert, you better get tickets when his “Cowboy Rides Away” tour gets near you in 2013 or 2014. He announced yesterday that this will be his last tour, though he’s not retiring. He’ll still make new music and play the occasional special show, but won’t go out on tour after this one wraps. George is 60 years old and started playing in a band when he was in high school.

If you’re keeping score in Tim McGraw’s very convoluted lawsuit to be free of Curb Records, Tim won a round yesterday. The Court of Appeals sided with Tim and against Curb, agreeing that Curb couldn’t keep Tim from signing with another record company.

In early 2013, when the next season of American Idol goes live, judge Keith Urban will have some moral support waiting in the wings. Wife Nicole Kidman has made it clear she’ll be there during the live shows, cheering her hubby on.

The “Hell on Wheels” tour kicks off tonight in Indiana. It’s Brantley Gilbert’s first headlining tour, and it includes Uncle Kracker, Brian Davis and Greg Bates. Greg loves the diversity of musical styles on this tour: “That’s what is so great about country music is that you can listen to George Strait and Brantley Gilbert at the same time. You can be fans of both equally. That’s what is going to be so great about going out and playing with him. We are gonna go out and take them on a rollercoaster journey through country music I think.”
Adding fuel to the rumors of Brantley Gilbert and Jana Kramer as a couple are Eric Gunderson and Stephen Barker Liles of Love and Theft – here’s what they said they saw: “[Eric] We were at the airport the other day and we were on a flight with um...some guy...beard...sings about country being country wide. [Stephen] He was on that flight? [Eric] Yeah, he was on our flight and then we got off and there was like a welcoming committee of Jana. I was like, ‘What the heck are you doing here?’ She was like, ‘Oh, picking up my boyfriend.’ So, I guess that’s something I can say now, ‘cause I gave it away. But, yeah, I think they’re...they’re dating!” They just celebrated their first #1 song – “Angel Eyes” – and plan to remember the feeling forever: “It’s still gonna be one of the coolest milestones that’s ever happened to either of us in our careers as a duo and individually as well.” 
Hunter Hayes has his first platinum plaque, commemorating sales of over a million copies of the song “Wanted.” He’s also the youngest male performer to hit the top of the Billboard Country chart ever, and he’s pretty excited about it all: “I feel like I’m on top of the world right now, I’m just like floating – it’s awesome! It’s so weird it puts it in a perspective for you. I just started two years ago singing ‘Storm Warning’ for everybody, and then we broke ‘Wanted’ on the scene. I just crossed my fingers, said my prayers and I was hoping for the best and – here we are!”

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Last night in Nashville, Loretta Lynn celebrated her 50th anniversary with the Grand Ole Opry, and some of country music’s biggest names were there to celebrate her influence, talent and grace. Miranda Lambert couldn’t quit gushing about Miss Loretta: “What I admire the most about Loretta is that she’s so real. There’s no frills, there’s no hiding anything, there’s no dressing her up and making her something she’s not. She’s exactly who she is, in her music, in her interviews, on television.” Also on hand were Pistol Annies, Trace Adkins, Lee Ann Womack and Crystal Gale.

Dierks Bentley is still floating on cloud nine after hosting the ACM Honors concert Monday night in Nashville. As part of the gig, he had to perform music by most of the honorees: “I’ve spent a lot of hours listening to these guys records but also working up their songs. You talk about Ricky Skaggs, Emmylou Harris, Dwight Yoakam and Vince Gill are all guys who...I listen to their records a lot and I have so much respect for...really all those acts.”

Brad Paisley got his hat knocked off by Carrie Underwood on Sunday night in Nashville. In both Brad’s shows and hers, when they sing “Remind Me,” they’re joined by a video of the other duet partner, and Carrie was told that Brad’s commitments in Vegas and LA would keep him away from Bridgestone Arena. Sneaky Brad - she was onstage and started singing “Remind Me.” She got a couple of lines into the song when Brad started singing from off stage. She looked around, spotted him as he came onstage, and ran to him, giving him a huge hug. That’s when the hat incident happened. She only missed a few lines of the song in spite of the big surprise Brad pulled off. What a treat for that Blown Away audience – bet they were, for sure! Wanna see? Here you go…

It was a good summer to be the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Over 200,000 visitors enjoyed exhibits from Patsy Cline to Taylor Swift, a 15% increase over the summer of 2011.

Hunter Hayes has the #1 country song in America again this week with “Wanted.”

Little Big Town is on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon tonight, performing “Tornado.”

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Last night at the ACM Honors show in Nashville, Kenny Chesney received the Crystal Milestone award, in recognition of his promotion of country music world-wide. Asked who his musical heroes are, Kenny cited Kix Brooks as a big influence: “Kix and I have been friends a long time and I really respect him a lot as a survivor in a business that’s hard to survive in and I think the reason that he’s done that is because his foundation is from the songwriting end of it and he treats people very well and he’s treated me great. And I look up to Kix a lot.”

Also last night at the Ryman, Luke Bryan had a very special night. He and Dallas Davidson hit Nashville in the early 2000’s, and both were songwriters. They struck up a grand friendship, co-wrote two of Luke’s #1 songs – “I Don’t Want This Night to End” and “Country Girl (Shake It For Me)” and continue to pal around together all these years later. Dallas was honored at the show for winning ACM Songwriter of the Year earlier this year, and according to Luke, “The fact that Dallas and I are in this business together, we still, we’ll go fishing or hunting and shake our heads and giggle. The history between he and I is just so deep. It’s amazing, I mean, that I can have the opportunity to honor him on that night and do some of our songs, and the fact that, gosh, the fact that he and I have even written big hits is just borderline comical.”

Meanwhile, over at ABC, Taylor Swift has a gig for several weeks – she’s introducing a 30-second clip of new music from her “Red” album each Monday, and then Tuesday morning at 12:01, that song goes on sale at iTunes. About this week’s song, Taylor says, “This one is such a bold statement. It’s a bold sounding song and I think that’s why I ended up picking it. It’s a bold record in different ways – not in the same way as ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ is. But, every song has its own boldness.” In case you missed yesterday’s announcement about the song, “Begin Again,” here’s a sample of it…

Jake Owen is extending summer with the release of his Endless Summer EP today. On it, you’ll find a cover version of Ben Harper’s hit, “Steal My Kisses.” How did Jake decide to record that one? “Believe it or not, I always loved that song and then I kind of forgot about it. Then I was in a T.J. Maxx, and through the speakers I heard, ‘Always got to steal my kisses from you.’ I caught myself singing along and I felt like, ‘Wow this is the perfect summertime feel kind of song.’ So we did a really cool version of it and put it on there – so hopefully people dig it.” The EP is out now – go get it from iTunes, or wherever you like to buy music.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Where was Little Big Town when they heard they had their first #1 song? Karen, Phillip and Jimi spill the beans: “[Karen] We were grilling out with Rascal Flatts. It was Saturday. [Phillip] College football Saturday and all of the sudden we all got the text and I immediately got off the bus and went looking for Jimi. [Jimi] Yeah, Phillip and I ran and hugged each other from across the parking lot and slapped each other five!” They had a #1 party in Nashville on Friday, and day after tomorrow they’ll be on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, performing their next single, “Tornado.” By the way, Kimberly Schlapman now has her own cooking show on GAC. “Kimberly’s Simply Southern” kicked off Saturday morning and continues for 12 more weeks.

Hunter Hayes just had his first #1 song with “Wanted,” and the song is a favorite of Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott: “[Hillary] When I got that album, that was the song that I had on repeat that I listened to over and over and over. He’s just such a breath of fresh air, he’s such a cute guy. And my little sister is the biggest fan of his! And he’s a great talent! He has all of the chops you’d ever need to back it up. [Dave] Uh-huh!” Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood had a writing session with Hunter and were blown away by his talent. Hunter co-wrote, sang, played all the instruments and co-produced his self-titled debut album. He’s opening for Carrie Underwood on her Blown Away tour.

Starting tonight at midnight, a new Taylor Swift song from her upcoming album “Red” will be released weekly. “Red” comes out October 22nd. Catch Taylor on Good Morning America, revealing the next song each Monday morning.

Brad Paisley released a new song on Friday, but it won’t be available on an album until April 9th, 2013. “Southern Comfort Zone” is a song Brad says he hopes makes people see all the amazing things the world has to offer, and then appreciate their own comfort zone, wherever it may be.

Toby Keith is excited about the success of his current single, “I Like Girls That Drink Beer.” About the song and about girls that drink beer, Toby says, “I think she just makes a statement, because you don’t see many ya know? Most of the time it’s an umbrella. You just don’t see a girl drink with the guys, so it was just funny to me when you see that all the time. It used to be more common and now it has gotten where it isn’t.” His next album, “Hope On The Rocks,” comes out October 30th.

Faith Hill is getting set to release her 8th studio album, just released a new single, “American Heart,” and will hit the stage with hubby Tim McGraw in Vegas for a series of concerts. But it wasn’t always bright lights and fame for Faith, who celebrated her 45th birthday on Friday: “I don’t even remember how many years ago this was, but I sold t-shirts for Reba. I worked for that fan club. I boxed merchandise up and stuff and I just remember that more vividly than I even remember the beginnings of my career. It was just kind of embedded in my brain!”

Brantley Gilbert just wrapped up his opening slot on Toby Keith’s “Live In Overdrive” tour, and is taking a few days off before kicking off his own “Hell On Wheels” tour later this week. What does he do when he gets home? According to Brantley, “I’m spending a lot more time away from home, but I think in a way it’s really showing me how much those people I’m missing mean to me. I’m in a hurry to get back and when I do get there, I’m always going to the next place, seeing my mom or my dad or going to see the guys I ride with and spending all that time on my motorcycle, which is a big plus!”

Congrats to Jason Aldean, who just got another gold record for “Take A Little Ride.”

More country music news on my blog every weekday – just click the “sandy’s blog” button at moby in the yeah baby!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Are you a teacher? Do you want Taylor Swift to show up in your classroom to encourage your students to read? She’s doing a live webcast that’s only available to teachers who register their class in advance of the October 24th event. She’ll talk about how reading and literacy has made her a better songwriter, and will perform at least one song from her upcoming album, “Red.” Register now – this event is only open to teachers and their classes.

Little Big Town is at the top of the Billboard Country Album chart with their new album, “Tornado,” and are #2 on the all-genre Billboard 200. About that success, Jimi and Karen say, “[Jimi] I think they’re gonna have a good time with the record. Music is an escape, and I think that there’s those moments on the record that are that and a good time, but there’s some serious moments and moments that speak to life and the ups and downs of that, and what do we want them to have? [Laughs] [Karen] I hope it’s a record that stays in their collection for years to come. You know, like one of those timeless records? That would be an amazing compliment to know that I was in someone’s playlist.” Next Wednesday they’ll perform the title cut to the album on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

Kellie Pickler has the honor of flipping the switch as the Opry goes pink again this year in honor of breast cancer awareness month. The special show will be October 30th, and joining Kellie will be Jana Kramer, The Farm and other performers, both Opry members and non-members. $5 from each ticket sold will be donated to Women Rock For the Cure, an organization that raises money for breast cancer research. No word if Kellie will still be sporting the bald headed look – she shaved her head in support of a childhood friend who’s battling breast cancer. Kellie’s beautiful, hair or not.

There’s been some baby-talk among the members of Lady Antebellum, with Charles Kelley saying that he doesn’t want Hillary Scott to have a baby any time soon, because the band will have to stop touring. Meanwhile, Hillary says she thinks Charles and his wife will be the first to have a Lady A baby. Dave Heywood? Neither of the other two is speculating about him and his new bride! The trio head to Australia to kick off their down-under leg of the Own the Night world tour next Tuesday.

We get all caught up in country music and how great it is, but there’s a whole wide world of people who don’t really get it. You might think that rocker Richie Sambora might be one of them, but the Bon Jovi guitarist says of Big and Rich’s new cd, “Their record sounds great and they’re back and firing on all cylinders and you know it’s a lot of fun! My country cousins.” Who else does he like in country music? “Guys like the Jason Aldean guy is really good. Kenny Chesney is always good. Lady Antebellum is good. And even The Band Perry I saw a video I was watching CMT the other day that I really enjoyed.”

Congrats to Scotty McCreery, who is at #4 on Billboard Magazine’s “Hottest Minors in Music” list. It’s their annual list of 21 artists under 21 years of age.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

When Zac Brown throws a party, you never know who will show up, but you know it’ll be good. If you’re heading for Nashville this weekend for the Zac Brown Band & Friends Southern Ground Music & Food Festival, prepare to be blown away by Zac and his boys, along with John Mayer, Alan Jackson, Dwight Yoakam, Greg Allman, and Sheryl Crow. Will there be surprise guests? Does the sun rise in the east?

Dierks Bentely has been reunited with an old friend – his truck, “Big White.” If you saw the “5-1-5-0” video, you saw what they did to the poor truck – mud all over it, inside and out. It was fun for the video, but ever since then, Dierks has been missing “Big White” because of scheduling issues: “We’ve been gone the whole summer – it’s been flying in and out. There’s just not been time to pick up the truck. So, I just got it back and it’s all cleaned out. It’s better than it ever looked – it’s actually better than it ever was. That video shoot is the best thing that ever happened for that truck because once he started cleaning it, he started fixing antennas, side mirrors, my rearview mirror and put the armrest back on – put the stereo back where it’s supposed to be and fixed my air conditioning. He just went to town on it.”

Luke Bryan had a party in Nashville this week, celebrating the #1 success of “Drunk on You.” Since it’s his fourth #1 song, are the parties still as special? “You never get tired of celebrating number ones. It’s pretty cool stuff. ‘Drunk On You’ is such a, a kind of a career changing song for me. It’s such a big, big, big song when we see it every night out there on the road. It’s pretty amazing getting to do it and watch everybody’s reaction.”

Little Big Town covers a Lady Gaga song in concert, and they get an odd reaction when they introduce it: “People in the crowd are like, ‘Whaaaaat? I’m gonna get me a beer!’ But, then...we turn them right around! It’s fun. It’s fun. Bluegrass makes people happy, so we turn this Lady Gaga song into some good ole bluegrass.” They worked the song out last night on CMT’s Unplugged – if you missed it, here’s a concert version…

Martina McBride fans, rejoice – “The Essential Martina McBride” comes out October 22nd. The double-disc set includes all of her hits, plus a favorite or two of hers. She’s performing in Switzerland this week and returns to the US leg of her tour on September 28th at the Ryman.

Brad Paisley is a guest vocalist and guitarist on Colbe Caillat’s Christmas album, due out October 23rd. And there’ll be new music from Brad this week from his upcoming album. We don’t know the name of the song, the album or the release date, but should have at least a song before the weekend.

He won American Idol, but he’s just a college freshman, like all the rest. Scotty McCreery has taken up residence in the dorm at North Carolina State. Scotty’s decorating like a normal college kid, too: “I got a few posters in my room like a big blue marlin poster that Guy Harvey sent me. I got that beside my bed. I got my big Rocky poster above my desk, so anytime I’m feeling a little down on paper I can just look up and say, ‘Come on, get going like Rocky!’ So, little stuff like that.” Unlike most college freshmen, Scotty McCreery has an album coming out on October 16th – his first Christmas album.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

What will The Voice be like without Blake Shelton? Get used to the idea – he says leaving the show may happen soon. NBC has decided to air two seasons per year of the show, and according to Blake, that is “not acceptable.” He says if he wants to tour, “there’s not a chance of that doing back-to-back seasons.” He’s to the point of telling NBC honchos that “It’s changed my life, but it’s not my life.” In other Blake news, by the end of the year, membership in his fan club will be free. Still the same access, just no cash needed. Several other country artists have decided that their fans do enough for them and their careers – they shouldn’t have to pay to be fans.

Eric Church’s Blood, Sweat & Beers tour is underway, and Eric feels like he has the perfect opening acts in Justin Moore and Kip Moore. (no relation) According to Eric, “You know, Justin’s been around for a while now. I’ve been impressed with the fact that he’s gone out played bars, played clubs, whether he had a radio hit or he didn’t have a radio hit. With Kip, I’m impressed with just the songwriter sense and his instinct from a songwriter’s side. I like the grit in his music.”

Eli Young Band’s Jon Jones and his wife Sarah are expecting their first child late this year. In July, Mike Eli and his wife had their first child. The two credit Little Big Town with showing them that having a life and having a career that involves a lot of road time can work: “We were on the Throwdown tour watching them have their families out on the road and seeing that it actually can be done. That’s one of those things that we always weren’t quite sure how do you have a family and be out on the road at the same time? Cause being out on the road is tough, and we really credit them with convincing us that you can actually have a productive life outside of being on the road.”

Big & Rich are climbing the charts with “That’s Why I Pray,” from their first album in five years, “Hillbilly Jedi.” Why Hillbilly Jedi? John and Kenny explain just what or who Hillbilly Jedi are: “[John] They’re the guys that go all over the universe. [Kenny] They represent The Force...the light! [John] Kenny and I, we’re hard to describe. We can’t even describe us. It is an intangible thing that you really don’t know what it is, but it’s there. Kind of like The Force, as goofy as that is, so Hillbilly Jedi suits us a little bit. [Kenny] And I don’t know if you realize this or not, but we are both a tad bit hillbilly.”

Congratulations to Hunter Hayes, who has his first #1 song with “Wanted.” How does that feel? “It’s just so cool to be considered an artist in this world, you know? It’s like I’ve been a fan for so long...I still am. But, to be able to get on stage and say I get to do it too is pretty cool, you know? I don’t know. I’m still passing the amazement part [laughs] ...Still passing that.” He’s on the road, opening for Carrie Underwood.

Meanwhile, Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley are gearing up for their 5th year of hosting the CMA Awards together. Promos have started airing, but you don’t have to try to catch them on TV…here you go:

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Kimberly Perry co-hosted the “CMA Music Festival: Country’s Night to Rock” with Luke Bryan last night, and she had a blast. She enlisted her brothers in The Band Perry to help her prepare for her hosting duties: “Oh goodness, for me, I didn’t know what a co-host was supposed to do. You see the pro’s like Carrie and Brad on the CMA Awards, and it’s like well, ‘You have some big shoes to fill.’ I actually practiced for my interviews because I had never done an interview before. You guys have a really tough job! Reid, Neil and I, they played Brad 1 and Brad 2 in the bus before I went out and did that and kind of threw me some curve balls. That’s what I did to prepare.”

Tim McGraw understands the power of a song, and also that artists have to dish up different types of songs in order to stay relevant to their fans. What’s his secret? “The key is finding good ones. There’s always a place for ones that don’t say a whole lot that are just fun, too. I mean I’ve had a few of those and I have no problem with those. It’s like, I go to the movie, I like to have some chocolate covered peanuts, you know, but I also like a heavy movie. And there’s places for all of it.” His latest song, “Truck Yeah,” falls into the “chocolate covered peanuts” category – here’s a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the video…

Yes, that was Charlie Daniels being featured last night on Monday Night Football on ESPN. It’s not the first time he’s done that gig – every week during the 2006 football season, Charlie was part of an all-star band that opened the show.
All the Pistol Annies are now off the market. Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton have been married a couple of years, Angaleena Presley married Jordan Powell in May and now Ashley Monroe is engaged to Chicago White Sox pitcher John Danks. Here’s the photo she tweeted to announce the news… 


The ACM Honors stage just got hotter. Dierks Bentley is hosting the show, and Randy Houser, Luke Bryan, Jana Kramer, Kellie Pickler, Ashley Monroe, Rodney Crowell and Daily & Vincent will all be part of the entertainment next Monday night at the Ryman. The evening celebrates the winners of ACM awards given out before the televised portion of the show, as well as special honorees.

Lee Brice’s song, “Hard to Love,” has been certified gold for half a million copies sold. What’s the song about? Lee explains, “It’s a song about me. It’s a song about a lot of guys. So it’s a country strong and it’s really about every man in the world – not just country music men.”

Easton Corbin’s new album, “All Over The Road,” is out today, and he says the two years he spent living life have helped his sophomore project: “The more you grow, the older you get and obviously the more experiences you go through in life. I think it opens up some stuff, maybe some new territory to cover on a record, ya know.”

Dwight Yoakam is out with his first new music in seven years – “3 Pears” is out today, and Dwight produced the project. Why did a new album take so long? “I was continuing to hopefully evolve as a producer and learn. You know, you only have yourself to blame for whatever works or whatever doesn’t.”

Monday, September 17, 2012

Carrie Underwood and Hunter Hayes are officially on the Blown Away tour, hitting the road Friday. From the sound of things, her wardrobe may need it’s own tractor-trailer! “Yes! A lot of very dramatic costumes, and no two shows will be exactly the same as far as what I wear and when I wear it. I like to have options.” Hunter is excited to be part of his first really big tour and says Carrie is a gracious partner: “For her it’s very much so a show in its entirety. It’s not an opening act – in her show she’s very cool about bridging the two and making it an experience all together. So to consider myself a part of that experience if you will, it’s definitely mind blowing.” $1 from each ticket on the North American tour will go to the American Red Cross.

It’s official - Keith Urban has been announced as one of the new American Idol judges. The rest of the panel consists of Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Randy Jackson, and they all started the season yesterday with the New York City auditions.
Taylor Swift is excited about the platinum status of her newest song, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” and excited with how it’s rocketing up the charts. Excited, but not surprised: “This was the song that got stuck in people’s heads. When I would play this song and other songs for my friends, this was the one, that people literally days later couldn’t stop singing.”

Eric Church debuted a new music video for “Creepin’” over the weekend on and it premiers on CMT today. Eric enjoyed the process of making this video, saying, “It’s the first time we’ve ever somewhat played a role, a character. We all—myself and the band—it involves a train, it involves robbing a train, we’re kind of a gang. We got dress up—very James Gang kinda thing - really cool.”

Martina McBride kicks off The Joy of Christmas tour November 23rd in Atlanta. She’s packaged all of her favorite Christmas songs together in what she calls a “fun concert for all.”

Trisha Yearwood has signed on for another season of her Trisha’s Southern Kitchen cooking show on the Food Network. The series premiers October 20th, and at least one of the 13 episodes will feature Garth in the kitchen, too.

Rascal Flatts get their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame today. Walk of Fame‘s website will stream the ceremony live Monday at 11:30am Pacific time, and they’ll be on the Tonight Show, performing “Come Wake Me Up.” Blake Shelton is on The Voice, and the “CMA Music Festival: Country’s Night to Rock” airs on ABC tonight.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Carrie Underwood with a lap full of kitties, Sandy Weaver Carman
Kenny Chesney is out with a new single, “El Cerrito Place,” a song that tells the story of a man looking for his lost love: “I think it talks about all of the measures that we all go to - to feel loved and to get that certain thing back that is drivin’ you crazy, emotionally. And ‘El Cerrito Place’ has that certain insanity about it.” It’s from his “Welcome To The Fishbowl” cd, and yes, your astute ears were right – that is Grace Potter on background vocals in the song.

It came out in May, but Carrie Underwood’s album, “Blown Away,” tops the Billboard Country chart again this week. That’s seven weeks it’s held the top position. Carrie’s getting ready to kick off her tour, but stopped by the Checotah Oklahoma animal shelter while she was visiting her mom and found a lapful of love. She tweeted this photo of herself covered in kittens and asked her Twitter followers if anybody wanted one. Carrie’s a big supporter of her hometown shelter.

Love and Theft are up for two CMA Awards this year – Vocal Duo of the Year and New Artist of the Year. Their debut single, “Runaway,” hit the top 10, and the follow-up, “Angel Eyes,” was their first #1 song. They’re getting set to join Jake Owen on tour this fall, and Stephen Barker says that King George is his idol: “George Strait’s one of the reasons I moved to Nashville. I had, like, every single album, especially in high school, I had ‘em all, and then, junior year, someone stole all my CDs out of my football locker, but…so I used to have almost every George Strait CD up to that point. So I haven’t restarted building my catalog just because it’s kind of depressing ’cause I had so many, but yeah, George is one of the reasons I’m here right now.”

Do you have a great story about how one of the CMA-nominated songs has impacted your life? The Band Perry has partnered with RIAA and NARM for the second annual Countdown to the CMA Awards contest. The winner gets $1,000 and two tickets to the November first CMA Awards show in Nashville. Good luck – enter before October 12th!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

It’s fall, and so a certain superstar’s thoughts turn to – baking? Yep, Taylor Swift loves to log a little kitchen time, especially in the fall: “It’s about to be baking overdrive, because fall is when you start baking cinnamon type things – pumpkin type things. So there’s going to be pumpkin bread that I make a lot of, and give it to people. That’s what I do in the fall, and also Starbucks gets the pumpkin spice lattes which I’m really excited about.” She should also be excited to have the #1 and #2 songs on iTunes – at #2, her current single, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” and at #1 is the song she sang on the Stand Up 2 Cancer telethon, “Ronan.”

Keith Urban’s song, “For You,” is headed for the top of the charts. Written for the soundtrack to the movie, “Act of Valor,” Keith says the scene in the movie where the Navy SEAL dives onto a live grenade to save a platoon of men was the inspiration: “He sacrificed his life for everybody else, and that seemed like the most profound moment in the film of sacrifice, and that’s really what the song is about. But we couldn’t figure out where to write the song from. Sort of out of the wonderful heavens I said to my co-writer, ‘What would the soldier say, the second after he died? Let’s write the song from that perspective.’” The song is at #6 with a bullet on the Billboard Country chart.

With a CMA nomination for Musical Event of the Year, Willie Nelson is hoping that he can get onstage with Jamey Johnson, Kris Kristofferson and Snoop Dogg to perform “Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die” on the CMA Awards show: “Well I hope so! I’m up for it. And all the other guys—you know Jamey lives there so that wouldn’t be hard to get in there. We gotta get Snoop and Kris over there, so—it shouldn’t be a problem.” Snoop now calls himself Snoop Lion instead of Snoop Dogg – what does Willie call him now? “Yeah I’m gonna wait and see if he changes it again. I’ll just keep calling him Snoop – whatever.” The CMA Awards are November first at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville.

Josh Turner’s song, “Time is Love,” has sold half a million copies and has been certified gold. That tickles Josh, not just for him but also for the songwriters – Tony Martin, Mark Nesler and Tom Shapiro. According to Josh, “I really love their work, and I just really understood where they were coming from with this song. It was a message I wanted to say, and I felt like it would showcase my voice in a great way.” That’s not the only heavy metal Josh got this week – “Your Man” and “Would You Go With Me” have both been certified platinum for selling a million copies each.

Rascal Flatts have been at this hit-making thing for over a decade, and will get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame Monday. They join other country artists like Garth Brooks, Reba and Brooks & Dun, and credit those artists with their success: “We really learned, too, by watching people like Garth Brooks through the years, Reba McEntire and their productions and their shows, and being on tour with Brooks and Dunn, and people like that that have taught us that there’s more to live shows than just playing music—there’s a lot more to it to make the experience really whole.” Walk of Fame‘s website will stream the ceremony live Monday at 11:30 Pacific time, and Monday night, catch them on the Tonight Show, performing “Come Wake Me Up.”

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Jason Aldean is apparently very inspirational – to the Washington Nationals baseball team! Several of the players had tickets to his concert last Saturday night, and the Nats were playing an afternoon game. Adam Laroche, first baseman for the Nationals, stole an extra base so the game could end early, saying they “had to win that game in a hurry or [they] were going to miss that concert.” They beat the Florida Marlins 7-6.

Brantley Gilbert is riding high on his new-found success in country music, and has re-released “Kick it in the Sticks” due to fan demand. That song is a pretty rockin’ song – was Brantley leaning more to his rock and roll side when it was written and recorded? According to him, “I will be completely honest with you those were not my intentions when I wrote that song or when we produced it – either one. I can honestly say that about every song on that record. I did not try to make it sound country. I did not try to make it sound rock. We just wrote songs and we played them like we heard ‘em.”

Bucky Covington’s new album, “Good Guys,” came out yesterday, and Bucky says there’s a really good reason for that: “We figured we would put the album out on September 11th and a portion of the proceeds will go to Help The Good Guys - to help firefighters all over the U.S. and Canada. We figured it’d be great – of course you can’t say September 11th and not think firefighters.” He spent yesterday in New York City, hanging with public safety officers and joining in their remembrance ceremonies.

Aaron Lewis, frontman for the rock group Staind, also released a new album yesterday. He’s proud of the work, but admits that recording it was quite an ordeal: “I recorded the record on my days off from a Staind tour. So I’d play like three Staind shows in a row, and then have a day off, and I would fly from wherever I was in the country to Nashville, record for the afternoon and fly back to wherever I had to be next. That’s how I recorded the record.”

There’s holiday music coming from Scotty McCreery, Blake Shelton and Lady Antebellum, and Dave Heywood dishes a few details about trying to get in the Christmas spirit in the summertime: “We recorded this record kind of in two sections, but both times were in the summertime, which is always weird to be in the studio in July and June. So, we decorated the entire studio, we really did. We brought out lights, little, you know fake trees all around and decorated the place to kind of get in the Christmas spirit. It was definitely a new adventure to record it.” All three Christmas albums will be out next month.

Luke Bryan fans, here’s your road trip alert: you need to be in Nashville on October 17th, when Luke headlines the 5th Annual Capitol Street Party. Streets are closed off on Lower Broadway, and Luke’s excited to be part of the fun. Oh, and it’s free, too!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Jason Aldean is in the new issue of People Country, talking about his life off the road. He opens up about daughters Kendyl, who is 5, and Keeley, who is 9. Their favorite store? Target. Their favorite time of day? Bedtime, because the family loves bedtime tickle fights. The article also features photos of Jason’s 18-acre Tennessee property, with photos of the house included, so fans can see how he spends his down time.

Chris Young is about to take off on a headlining tour, and is pleased to be kicking it off November 15th at the Ryman in Nashville. He’s appreciated the opportunity to open for Miranda Lambert this year, and to play to much larger audiences than he’s been used to. As Chris put it, “I found myself constantly going to like people in my band going, ‘Dude, remember when we played in front of like a hundred people, and then like 30 of them left by the end of the show?’ But, it’’s all really exciting.” Tickets for the Ryman show go on sale this Friday at Ticketmaster and at

Little Big Town releases “Tornado” today, and they’re excited to bring new music to their fans. They used their live show band instead of session players, and collaborated with people they’ve admired for years. Jimi Westbrook says that the collaboration was his favorite part: “That was inspiring too. I think even before we got into the recording process was the writing side of things and the new people we were getting to work with. Some that we had known of, and wanted to write with but hadn’t ever been able to so. I think the inspiration started even back then and just carried all the way through. It was really cool.” “Tornado” includes their first #1 single, the platinum-selling “Pontoon.”

Kix Brooks also has a new album out today – “New To This Town” is his solo debut, and he says it’s a trip back to his real musical roots, especially the song “Moonshine Road:” “It’s just got that swamp groove and it was one of the first songs I wrote for the album, sort of—I felt kinda free and on my own in a way. I’m like ‘This isn’t anything like what Ronnie and I were doing, this really is kinda going back to where I came from.’”

Friday night, Taylor Swift was the highlight of the Stand Up 2 Cancer telethon with a song written especially for the occasion: “Ronan.” Ronan was a 4-year-old boy who lost his battle with neuroblastoma. His mom poured out the journey, the battle, and her loss through a blog that Taylor read, and she wrote the song based on Maya Thompson’s emotion-laden words. Taylor listed Maya as co-writer on the song, and it’s available on iTunes, where it’s the top-selling song by a long shot. Proceeds go to Stand Up 2 Cancer. If you’d like to hear it, here’s video from the show. Get tissues first – you have been warned…

No official announcement that Keith Urban will be a judge on American Idol this year, but Keith does reveal that he’s bad at shows like that: “I would love to be able to do it and hopefully that happens. I actually did a few of those kind of shows when I was very young I went on a few TV talent shows. I was terrible at all of them, but I really enjoyed the experience and the thing about some of these shows is that mentoring aspect. I really like that.”

Did you watch the season 3 premier of The Voice last night? Blake Shelton says that there are things the TV audience doesn’t see, like Cee Lo being distracted: “There have been times where we’re live on TV and Carson will ask a direct question to Cee Lo and Cee Lo not even know ‘cause he’s texting some girl or playing Angry Birds or something on his phone. It’ll completely just go right over his head.”

Carrie Underwood’s “Blown Away” is now a platinum-selling album for her. It’s spent six weeks at the top of the Billboard Country chart.

Monday, September 10, 2012

What can we expect from the Tim McGraw and Faith Hill concerts in Las Vegas? Apparently they won’t be doing their individual hits, but will do a show full of duets. But, you say, they haven’t done a whole show’s worth of duets in their career – will it be a short show? Oh, no – they’re apparently thinking Loretta and Conway, Tammy and George – according to Tim: “We’re going to do some different stuff, there’s a list of those kind of songs that we want to figure out what’s the coolest thing for us to do and the most fun that we’ll have doing the things the audience will enjoy hearing the most. But, I mean, God, there’s so many great duets out there that are fun to do.” The first show is on December 7th at the Venetian.

Toby Keith was flattered to be under consideration for a seat at the judge’s table on American Idol, but he turned it down. Why? “Ten years ago, I’d of said ‘yea.’ I’ve done enough movies and television now to know how time-consuming those things are. It was a wonderful number. I mean, they offered me incredible dollars to do it, but it’s probably better suited for somebody who’s got the time on their hands I don’t have.” Meanwhile, he’s seeing the average age of concert attendees drop, and he believes that “Red Solo Cup dropped my average age down from about 35 down to about 25 I think. We got a lot of youth. And that’s what you gotta do, you know, you’ve been around 18, 19 years, you’ve gotta find a way to reinvent or regenerate or do something, and it did!”

With their new album, “Tornado,” coming out tomorrow, Little Big Town has had a great week before the release. What did it sound like when they heard they were nominated for three CMA Awards this year? “[SCREAMS] [Jimi] “We were freaking out! It kinda sounded like that.” [Kimberly] “Yeah, it did.” [Karen] “We’re so thrilled and so honored. The Group of the Year category is fierce, fierce. We’re so honored to be a part of it.” [Phillip] “We literally were jumping up and slapping and high fives and hugging each other. I mean, we’re so thrilled. This is the best. Living on cloud nine right now.” They’re nominated for Music Video of the Year, Single of the Year and Vocal Group of the Year, in the same week that they scored their first #1 song. How did they feel when “Pontoon” hit #1? They’re dancing in the streets…check it out!

Lee Brice has co-written a fight anthem for his alma mater, Clemson. The song is called “Orange Empire” and you can get it on iTunes.

The politics of ugly got hung out on Twitter this week. Bocephus apparently tweeted something not very nice about President Obama, to which Alec Baldwin responded, “If Hank Williams Jr wasn't such a pathetic, wheezing fossil, I'd have a talk with him.” He then tweeted, “I think we need to call Hank Williams Jr what he is.... A broken-down, senile, racist coot.” Hank Jr. has been uncharacteristically unresponsive to Alec’s rant.

Little Big Town is on Good Morning America this morning, Blake Shelton is on Live With Kelly, “The Voice” returns tonight, with Blake Shelton in the big revolving red chair and Martina McBride is on Opening Act on E!.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Eric Church ended up with the most nominations for this year’s CMA Awards – he’s up for five, including male vocalist, album, single, song, and video. His first-ever CMA nomination was last year, when he was up for New Artist of the Year but was bested by The Band Perry. Eric was shocked by the amount of nominations: “Um, I’m um...truly speechless. I think it’s a testament to really fans that believed in the music and loved the music and told people about the music, otherwise we don’t have really the track record to be the most nominated artist at this point in time in our career for the path that we’ve taken and I think that it’s truly because of the fans.” As for how his songs come together when he’s recording, Eric says it’s pretty organic: “I don’t have a real direction as to what it is—I go in and I play—my producer Jay Joyce—I go in and I play it acoustic for him and the musicians, and then we start hashing it out, you know? We start figuring out what it is, and it takes, you know weeks on a song just trying to figure out what it was.”

Colt Ford is proud as a peacock over Jason Aldean’s CMA nomination for “Dirt Road Anthem,” which Colt co-wrote with Brantley Gilbert. How did Jason come to record the song? Colt explains, “You know, it just turned out that I was opening for him in 2009 and he said, ‘Man, how do all those people know all the words to that song?’ And I was like, ‘I don’t know, man, they just seem to really like it.’ So he called me up and said he wanted to try to cut it and of course, I didn’t have a problem with that. Jason’s been a good friend of mine and he grew up the same way I did, so it wasn’t like it was something made up for him. I mean, that was real life for him as well, and it turned out to be the biggest song of his career.”

Kellie Pickler is beautiful, even bald. Don’t believe me? Check out this video of Kellie shaving her head to support her childhood friend Summer Holt Miller. She’s only 36 but is battling breast cancer.

George Strait will announce a 2013 tour later this month, and apparently he’s got another big announcement, too. Stay tuned…

“Cheers, It’s Christmas” is the title of Blake Shelton’s Christmas album, which is available for pre-orders now. It comes out October 2nd and here’s the track list:

1. “Jingle Bell Rock” (featuring Miranda Lambert)
2. “White Christmas”
3. “Oklahoma Christmas” (featuring Reba)
4. “Let It Snow”
5. “There's A New Kid In Town” (featuring Kelly Clarkson)
6. “Santa's Got A Choo Choo Train”
7. “Home” (featuring Michael Buble)
8. “Winter Wonderland”
9. “The Christmas Song”
10. “Blue Christmas” (featuring The Pistol Annies)
11. “I'll Be Home For Christmas”
12. “Silver Bells” (featuring Xenia Martinez)
13. “Time For Me To Come Home” (featuring Dorothy Shackleford)
14. “The Very Best Time Of Year” (featuring Trypta-Phunk)

Carrie Underwood tops the Billboard Country Album chart this week with “Blown Away,” and she says that she’s inspired by her new music: “It opened the door for the Blown Away album, and for me to be able to play a little bit, which has been a lot of fun. From the song to the album, to putting together a tour, I feel like that song has allowed me to be able to do different things. It’s definitely making the tour be more dramatic and more of a juicy story.”

Luke Bryan has been given a plaque recognizing sales of seven million downloads of songs from his platinum album, “Tailgates & Tanlines.”

Want to see how Lee Ann Womack roughs it? Check out the next issue of People Country magazine – they went along on a road trip with Lee Ann and two of her girlfriends in her 1973 Airstream Land Yacht, which Lee Ann says is “girly, but ‘60’s timeless.” Chandelier in the bedroom? Portable record player? Cornhole? Sounds like a party!

Little Big Town will be on Good Morning America Monday morning.

Here’s the complete list of CMA nominees for your wagering pleasure:

Entertainer of the Year

Jason Aldean
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
Blake Shelton
Taylor Swift

Female Vocalist of the Year

Kelly Clarkson
Miranda Lambert
Martina McBride
Taylor Swift
Carrie Underwood

Male Vocalist of the Year

Jason Aldean
Luke Bryan
Eric Church
Blake Shelton
Keith Urban

Vocal Group of the Year

Eli Young Band
Lady Antebellum
Little Big Town
The Band Perry
Zac Brown Band

Vocal Duo of the Year

Big & Rich
Love and Theft
The Civil Wars
Thompson Square

Musical Event of the Year

“Dixie Highway” – Alan Jackson, Zac Brown
“Feel Like a Rock Star” – Kenny Chesney, Tim McGraw
“Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die” – Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg, Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson
“Safe and Sound” – Taylor Swift, The Civil Wars
“Stuck On You” – Lionel Richie, Darius Rucker

New Artist of the Year

Lee Brice
Brantley Gilbert
Hunter Hayes
Love and Theft
Thompson Square

Single of the Year

“Dirt Road Anthem” – Jason Aldean
“God Gave Me You” – Blake Shelton
“Home” – Dierks Bentley
“Pontoon” – Little Big Town
“Springsteen” – Eric Church

Song of the Year

“Even If It Breaks Your Heart” – Eli Young Band
“God Gave Me You” – Blake Shelton
“Home” – Dierks Bentley
“Over You” – Miranda Lambert
“Springsteen” – Eric Church

Album of the Year

Chief - Eric Church
Four the Record - Miranda Lambert
Home - Dierks Bentley
Own the Night - Lady Antebellum
Tailgates and Tanlines - Luke Bryan

Music Video of the Year

“Come Over” – Kenny Chesney
“Over You” – Miranda Lambert
“Pontoon” – Little Big Town
“Red Solo Cup” – Toby Keith
“Springsteen” – Eric Church

Musician of the Year

Sam Bush (mandolin)
Paul Franklin (steel guitar)
Dann Huff (guitar)
Brent Mason (guitar)
Mac McAnally (guitar)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Want to walk a mile in Taylor Swifts’ shoes? You can, if you pony up enough cash. She’s donated a pair of autographed size 8 Bloch flats to Soles4Souls, a charity that provides shoes to children in need around the world. The auction ends on September 13th at 3pm Eastern, so you have some time to gather your pennies together. You’ll need to gather a bunch, though – the bid at this writing is $713 and the bid increment is $100. Good luck – you’ll look great in Taylor’s shoes!

Little Big Town has scored their very first #1 song with “Pontoon.” Karen, Kimberly and Jimi are enjoying the ride: “[Karen] We could not be happier and we’re so grateful to have our very first #1 record. [Kimberly] I mean, we always wanted one of course, we’ve been a band for 13 years and we’ve always wanted a #1 record, but it’s kinda cool that it’s just now happening. There’s something really... [Karen] It could happen again though! [Jimi] That would be OK! I’d be alright with that.” They’re also celebrating their first platinum single with “Pontoon.” They’ve had two gold singles, “Boondocks” and “Little White Church” and a platinum album with “The Road to Here.”

Jason Aldean played a show for David Letterman’s audience last night, and you can re-watch it on His new album, “Night Train,” comes out October 16th, and Jason played a couple from it, saying, “The one thing I’m always trying to do is find great songs. You know, I’ve always wanted people to put the CD in and never have to skip songs. You know, I want them to listen to it all the way through.”

Eric Church is planning a live album, and you can be in the audience. The shows will be in Chattanooga in October, and Eric is giving his fans a way to win tickets. Get out your video camera, put on your creativity hat and go to Eric’s website to enter. Meanwhile, Eric knows that this first headlining tour is timed perfectly in his career, after years in dive bars: “I think you have to go through those environments to be able to earn your way into a place where you’re in front of 10,000 to 15,000 people. Then if something goes wrong, you can still handle it.”

Brantley Gilbert had a great time being part of Eric Church’s “Blood, Sweat and Beers” tour, and the two guys apparently hit it off well: “Eric is a person, you know, being out with him we actually formed a friendship. We got a chance to write together, you know, and we still text and talk and he’s a great guy, great performer.” The two will apparently arm-wrestle to see who gets to record each of the songs they co-wrote during the tour.

Dustin Lynch has a big fan – no, a really big fan! “Tim McGraw walked on the bus and he wanted to introduce himself. He said, ‘Man I’m a fan of your song ‘Cowboys And Angels.’ I’m a big fan of your music. I just want to say hello my name’s Tim.’ I was like, ‘Uh yeah, I know who you are buddy!”

Darius Rucker is part of a new fantasy football league, this one built around college ball. Pigskin Fantasy U lets players draft entire teams, and we know Darius has the Gamecocks in his picks, as he’s a huge fan. According to Darius, he got involved because “My buddies and I needed another reason to talk about football and trash talk each other.”

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

It’s the year of the bus fire, apparently. Joe Diffie has joined Chris Young, Jerrod Niemann, Lee Brice and Randy Houser on the list of artists whose buses have caught fire this year. Joe’s went up in flames in the early hours of the morning last Friday while they were traveling between shows. The driver safely stopped it, evacuated it and a nearby truck stop helped them get back on the road after the damage was repaired. No injuries – same as with all of the other bus fires.

Even superstars have guilty pleasures, and Lady Antebellum fessed up to theirs in their latest webisode – they’re enthralled by Honey Boo Boo. Charles Kelley says it’s his favorite show on tv, and Dave Haywood says sometimes they have to take a Honey Boo Boo break, even while recording their fourth studio album! No word on when the album will be out – if they keep watching trash tv, it could be a while!

Dierks Bentley just celebrated his 10th #1 song in Nashville at the Tin Roof. He showed up in his ’67 Camaro and told the crowd, “I can’t believe there’s 10 of them, but’s just, I think you put ‘em all together they tell a nice story of my music, my sound and my career so far. But,’s weird. I can’t believe it!”

Darius Rucker has five #1 country songs so far, and just released “True Believers,” the first single from his third country album, due out early next year. About the song, Darius says, “It’s such a defiant song for me. It’s just a song of, ‘I’m gonna make my life work no matter what you all say or think.’ And I’ve lived my life like that for 46 years now.”

Josh Turner’s summer was very busy, what with touring, putting out a new album, “Live Across America,” in partnership with Cracker Barrel, and trying to keep up with his three boys during their summer vacation. What sorts of things does a famous Dad do with his sons? “Sports things or basketball or baseball or just playing outside. You know, anytime we have good weather or even when we don’t we’re trying to get outside and go down to the creek or walking through the pasture or fishing in the pond or whatever it may be so a lot of different things we can do just at home.”

This morning, Jason Aldean and Lady Antebellum announce the final nominees for the CMA Awards on Good Morning America.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

With Labor Day behind us, Eric Church remembers working the graveyard shift for the Shop at Home network when he first moved to Nashville. As he recalls, “Anytime somebody calls you at 3 or 4AM and needs two-hundred knives for $19.95, it’s automatically an alarming situation. And I just, I was young and I’d been in a lot of these people’s shoes. I knew they were drunk. I knew what they had done. They’d just come home from the bar, flipped on Shop at Home and said, ‘You know what? I need that.’ So the reason the job didn’t last long for me is that I was maybe the worst salesmen in history because I ended up talking a lot of these people out of it, I’d say, ‘I’ll tell you what man, go to bed, call me, I’ll be here in the morning. If you get up in the morning and want these knives you call me back.’”

Trace Adkins played the Republican National Convention and shared his new song, “Tough People Do.” It was a huge hit with the delegates, who called it a GOP anthem. Not so, says Trace, "If a liberal politician is OK with the line, 'Tough people pull themselves up by the bootstraps when they hit hard luck/And they stay strong and keep fighting like they don't know how to lose, then by all means, play the song." You can see the performance here – language alert in the first 15 seconds, but then it’s family-friendly.

Carrie Underwood said at the #1 party for “Good Girl” last week in Nashville that she had to choose between going shopping for new clothes in LA or having a songwriting session with co-writers Chris DeStefano and Ashley Gorley. She picked songwriting and said that “Good Girl” came out fast and fun. By the end of the day, not only had they written the song but had worked it up and Carrie left with a demo in hand. She’s in Nashville now, rehearsing for her “Blown Away” tour.

Little Big Town’s “Tornado” comes out a week from today, and according to the band, they made it in seven days, thanks to producer Jay Joyce, who also produced Eric Church’s “Chief.” LBT rehearsed for four days and recorded for three, but didn’t hear anything at all until they finished recording on the third day. Then Jay surprised them with the finished mixes on all of the songs, to which Kimberly Schlapman said, “Doggone it! It sounds like we just made a record.” Because it only took a week to make the album, the band got four days off once they heard “Tornado’s” tracks, an unheard-of luxury for artists. In other LBT news, the band has the honor of performing at the 37th Annual TJ Martell Foundation Honors Gala October 23rd in New York.

Miranda Lambert’s potential television show will apparently eventually find a broadcast home. She was initially working with ABC Family, but now NBC has the treatment and is developing a show inspired by Miranda’s childhood, growing up with private investigators for parents. No word on when an episode might air.

LeAnn Rimes is apparently doing well at the rehab facility she checked herself into last week. She committed to a 30-day, in-patient treatment, trying to cope with anxiety and stress. She will, however, keep her scheduled performances, leaving the facility and then returning to treatment immediately afterwards. In other LeAnn news, she’s filed suit against Kimberly and Lexi Smiley, two woman she claims illegally recorded a phone call with her and shared it on the internet. LeAnn says she called them to ask them to quit spreading negative things about her online.

Road trip alert – Capitol Records’ 5th Annual Street Party will happen October 17th in Nashville. No line-up details yet, but streets will be closed near Music Row for a free night of country music concerts.

Taylor Swift is on the Ellen DeGeneres Show today.

Blog Archive