Saturday, 10 November 2012

Country Bites News snippets November 5 – November 9

Country Bites News snippets November 5  – November 9


London, Islington music venue, Union Chapel, faces threat of closure due to housing development plans proposed by the borough’s council.
A statement on the venue’s website read: “We're worried that a major new proposed housing development situated at the back of Union Chapel will threaten our operations as an award-winning music venue, rehearsal space and homeless centre.”
The statement goes on to say that the plans could “have a real impact on [the venue’s] operations” due to late night activity that takes place at the site, including hosting live music. Union Chapel has created a petition to help raise awareness of the issue and put forward its plea to Islington Council. It says: “We are sure that with proper planning provisions, including loading bays and sound proofing, Union Chapel can continue to operate in harmony with the local community.“We are asking the planners at Islington Council to adjust the plans, so that we do not risk loosing London's Greatest Live Music Venue and a key community asset”

Karen and The Dolans' have a new single 'Pray' which is an original song penned by Nashville writer Rita Weyls. Her songs which she co-writes with Stephen Dale Jones, have been covered by Reba McEntire, Tanya Tucker and George Strait.

This single has been added to the Rte Radio1 Playlist (Week Nov 5, 2012)
Blurb: The musical evolution of Karen and The Dolans continues with their new single, ‘Pray’. This fresh, new country pop sound includes a deliciously twangy arrangement and polished vocals, making this a radio-friendly track. It's lyrics and joyous melody suggests that a few minutes of reflection can help people forget those day to day worries for a while, and put things in perspective. The song is not about religion, it's more of a spiritual song from which something positive can be taken, a song full of inspiration and hope.
Pray’ is taken from the forthcoming album due for release in 2013 – Listen to a sample at

A special RTÉ Television documentary which celebrated Daniel Donnel’s 50th birthday and 30 years in the music business is now being made available from Nov 26th on DVD. It features the many milestones in his personal life and career and the very special relationship he shares with his many fans all over the world. Its many features include: An intimate interview with Daniel and Majella at their home in Tenerife, Award presentations including the Entertainer of the Year and the MBE presentation by Prince Charles,  the moment he was surprised on This Is Your Life, The Kincasslagh tea party, various concert show highlights and his marriage to Majella in 2002 – Full product details on AMAZON UK

Daniel O’Donnell and wife Majella have got married again! In an exclusive The Donegal Daily reports the couple, who first tied the knot ten years ago in Kincasslagh, renewed their vows at a private ceremony on the sun-kissed island of Tenerife.
And romantic Daniel even produced a stunning new sapphire and diamond ring to show how much he loved wife Majella.

Majella said the renewal even took them by surprise when two priest friends performed the ceremony out-of-the-blue at their luxury holiday home - “When we got married I remember saying to Daniel that I would like to renew our vows in 10 years, because it seemed so far away and yet here it is. “We were in Tenerife last month for a couple of weeks and we had two friends of ours staying with us who are priests.“I was telling them about the renewal thought and they said why not do it. So we did,” revealed Majella.
Tipperary woman Majella, who met Daniel in Tenerife where her parents owned a bar, said the setting was very romantic -“We had a very quiet blessing at the house and we had flowers and candles everywhere. It was beautiful.
When we went to renew the vows Daniel surprised me with a beautiful new Sapphire and Diamond ring. Aren’t I the lucky girl? I really hope the next 10 years goes a little slower,” said Majella
Photo - Copyright © Daniel O'Donnell, Rosette Records

Charlie Landsborough, 71, is back on the Irish Road again, he  will perform at The Manor Hotel, Abbeyleix on November 7; The Helix, Dublin, Nov 8; Carrickdale Hotel, Dundalk, Nov 9; Bangor Elim Complex, Nov 10 and Derry's Millennium Forum, Nov 11.
Charlie says , he was 53 before he got his big break - "I would still be playing in pubs in Merseyside if it wasn't for the Irish people," the genial entertainer says. Charlie became an instant chart hit in Ireland after appearing on Pat Kenny's, Kenny Live TV show all those years ago. "I will always be eternally grateful to Pat Kenny and to Gerry Anderson in the North of Ireland who helped me break through," he says. In 2013 Charlie will be off on an Australian tour and will spend time in Spain to work on his next album.
Anybody get the email saying their tour's been cancelled. doesn't sound too promising, read on:

Is there war in The Civil Wars camp? On Facebook they state: We sincerely apologize for the cancelling of all of our tour dates. It is something we deeply regret. However, due to internal discord and irreconcilable differences of ambition we are unable to continue as a touring entity at this time. We thank each and every one of you for your amazing love & support. Our sincere hope is to have new music for you in 2013. - Joy Williams & John Paul White.
Sadly the discord was visible at the UK gigs Paul didn't turn his head to interact with Joy at all during the Cambridge gig on Sunday night. Their tour dates section is now blank!

Did you hear Bob Harris’ CMA Highlights on BBC Radio 2 ? He was presented with a Wesley Rose International Media Achievement Award by Little Big Town during the red carpet interviews >>  YouTube
Little Big Town announced that they are to play London’s O2 on March 16, 2013. No details yet on the O2 website
Little Big Town have will launched a new tour across the U.S. and Canada from Jan. 31 in Murray, Ky. Dates for the Tornado tour are currently scheduled through early May, with guests David Nail ("Let It Rain") and Kacey Musgraves ("Merry Go Round") on select dates.
LBT Tweeted: We haven't stopped celebrating and smiling since the CMA awards Thursday night. Thank you to all our fans, country radio, our band, our crew, our label, our producer Jay Joyce, our whole team in Nashville (managers, agents, lawyers, accountants), our families and wait for it... Jesus. :)

More than 10,000 fans turned out to watch a Taylor Swift mini-concert, before she flicked the switch to light up the Westfield Shopping Centre mall's extravagant Christmas decorations in London.
Taylor at the Westfield Shopping
Centre, London

She told the crowd, "I love everything about Christmas. I live on a Christmas tree farm but I never thought I'd be here switching on lights."
Taylor  wore a vintage red dress she bought on eBay as she performed three hit singles after she switched on the Christmas lights.
"This is unbelievable. This is incredible. It's unreal," she said. "I love everything about Christmas. I live on a Christmas tree farm but I never thought I'd be here switching on lights."
"I like to say 'hi' to the fans because they're so cute and I love the accents." She advised potential singers to persist in pursuing their dreams."It's important to love it until it becomes all-consuming to your life. Sometimes you can get too ahead of yourself and you give up if it doesn't happen for you quickly," she said. "Singing should be all you want to do even if you end up singing in a coffee house. That's what I would be doing now if I hadn't had an incredible streak of luck - Watch after the advert break

UK Chart News
Taylor Swift's RED which debuted at number one last week, sold 20,696 copies in its second retail tracking week and slides to number five (sales) on the Official UK Albums Chart. It was sweet success for Robbie Williams, as CANDY (137,581 copies sold) displaces Taylor at number one to become his 14th number one hit, more than eight years after Radio became his 13th.The demand for Robbies album was due to several weeks of radio play and his performance of it on The X Factor Results show the day it was released.
New at #2 on the UK Country Album Charts is Toby Keith with HOPE ON THE ROCKS

Pauka Macaskill & Keith Macleod with “How's The World Treating You” have overhauled Ian Highland to take over at the top of the British and Irish Top 10 Hotdisc Chart. Thorne Hill withHelp Me Find The Strength” moves up from #4 to #2


(28 Oct 2012) Shelby Lynne - Revelation Road (Deluxe Version) EVERSO RECORDS Time1:00:18

(12 Nov 2012) Nathan Carter - Wagon Wheel (Sharpe Music)

(30 Oct 2012 ) Various Artists - An Average Joes Muddy Christmas (Average Joes Entertainment) 43:54 mins

Tim McGraw has been honored by Nielsen-BDS & Mediabase at the superstar’s ONE OF THOSE NIGHTS invite-only event. Nielsen-BDS’ Josh Bennett and Mediabase’s Robin Rhodes were on-hand to present the superstar with airplay honors, celebrating McGraw’s successes from his 1992 chart debut to his Big Machine debut single, and 50th top 10 hit, “Truck Yeah”. Nielsen-BDS certified McGraw as the most-played Country artist of the past 20 years (1992-2012) with more than 10 million spins detected. Mediabase recognized McGraw as the most-played Country artist in the history of their 24/7 tracking service.

Jason Aldean has announced the 1st Leg of  his “2013 Night Train Tour!” He will kick off the first leg of his 2013 Night Train Tour in Bossier City, LA on Feb. 21 and roll on to 23 cities through May. Special guests Jake Owen and Thomas Rhett will jump on the ‘Train’ with Aldean in 2013.“The thing I’m most excited about for next year is getting to add some new songs off the ‘Night Train’ album into my show,” said Aldean.  As a musician, it’s great to be able to shake up the set list and think of cool ways to present these new songs in the live show.  We’re already working on some cool production ideas, and we’re going to come back from the holidays ready to go.  I’m a big fan of both Jake and Thomas Rhett, so it’ll be awesome to have those guys out with us.”

Cowboy legend Michael Martin Murphey was presented with a lifetime achievement award by Governor Gary R. Herbert during Murphey’s performance with the BYU Philharmonic Symphony on November 2 at the Heber Valley Cowboy Poetry Gathering.
The award from Heber City honored Murphey’s career, which includes recording six gold albums, receiving multiple Grammy nominations and entertaining millions of people around the world, and his work in preserving traditional cowboy music.

Sammy Kershaw, his band and crew were involved in a roadway accident while on tour in Texas.
On Friday night (Nov 2) after hitting the road following a concert in Nocona, Texas, Kershaw’s bus was struck by another passenger vehicle.  The bus was impacted at a high speed, causing major damage, leaving the vehicle inoperable.  The driver of the vehicle that struck Kershaw’s bus was taken to hospital with injuries.  Kershaw, his band and crew were shaken and sore but not seriously injured. “My guys and I are a little sore today… the third day is always the worst,” says Kershaw.  Eleven people were involved in the accident and no one was killed.  It could have gone the other way.  Buses and cars can be replaced but people can’t.  I’m so thankful that the other driver, my band and crew are all still here.  We had a guardian angel." (Press Release)

Airing in America November 10-16 on PBS: Austin City Limits Presents: Americana Music Festival 2012.
Performers included in this very special broadcast are some of the best and brightest new faces of Americana, as well as legendary icons who helped define the genre:  Bonnie Raitt with John Hiatt, Booker T. Jones, Alabama Shakes, The Mavericks, Richard Thompson, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Hayes Carll with Cary Ann Hearst, Guy Clark and Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, and an all-star finale tribute to Levon Helm. The hour-long program starts to air on KLRU-TV Saturday, November 10th and on other PBS affiliate stations through November 16th  (Press) Juli Thanki email

Rascal Flatts and actress Hayden Panettiere, star of ABC's Nashville, will host the third annual CMT Artists of the Year special premiering Dec. 8

Carrie Underwood will be performing at the American Music Awards show on November 18, confirmed by Dick Clark Productions. Underwood, along with pop star Pink and rapper Pitbull, will join the lineup of already announced performers that includes Taylor Swift, singer and ‘American Idol’ judge Nicki Minaj, rock band Linkin Park and pop star/’The Voice’ coach Christina Aguilera.

Ray Price Hangs In There: Price confirmed rumours that he has cancer, adding that after six months of chemotherapy the tumor has not grown and he is hopeful for a full recovery and feels fine, good enough to be looking forward to concert Saturday (Nov 10) at the Floresville Community Events Center.
The doctor said that every man will have cancer if he lives to be old enough,” the 86-year-old Price said. “I don't know why I got it — I ain't old.” The cancer was discovered while his gallbladder was being removed after a gall stone attack. He was told the only way to cure it was to remove the pancreas, a nine-hour operation that involves removal of a portion of the liver and stomach, Price said.
Price had to reduce touring to 25-30 dates this year, although he told his booking agent he wants to do at least 100 in 2013.

Big & Rich has been announced as the recipient of the CRS 2013 Artist Humanitarian Award, to be presented at Country Radio Seminar on Wednesday, Feb. 27th, 2013.
Big & Rich’s charitable endeavors date back more than a decade and are too numerous to mention individually. Their humanitarian efforts have ranged from visiting individual patients in hospitals, to staging benefit concerts for the Country Music Hall of Fame and the 173rd Airborne Memorial, to their well-documented U.S. and international outreach. The duo has made a point throughout their career to help underprivileged children and families in struggling countries like Uganda, Sudan, Haiti and Kenya, among others.

On Saturday evening (Nov 3rd), twinkling lights and holiday sweaters flooded Nashville’s Bridgestone arena for the CMA Country Christmas taping.

Hosted by a VERY pregnant Jennifer Nettles, the special is set to air on ABC on December 20th and 21st and features performances and holiday stories from some of the biggest stars in music. Not only did country music’s biggest stars like Lady Antebellum, Keith Urban, Dierks Bentley, Little Big Town,Martina McBride, Scotty McCreery, and The Band Perry serenade the crowd with magical renditions of holiday tunes; but John Legend and Colbie Callait also hypnotized us with soulful vocals.
See Country Music Tattle Tale’s Flickr Photos

Three holiday specials were shot thislast  weekend. Dierks Bentley, Little Big Town, Keith Urban and the Band Perry provided some of the talent as ABC shot the Jennifer Nettles-hosted “CMA Country Christmas” on Nov. 3 at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena. Blake
Shelton taped an NBC Christmas special on Nov. 4 under the working title “Not So Family Christmas” with guests Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire and Kelly Clarkson. Plus, Scotty McCreery shot a GAC holiday special on Nov. 4 with guests Gloriana, Brett Eldredge and Jana Kramer.

Kenny Chesney, who's played a country-world record 85 stadium shows in his career, makes it to over 100 with the announcement of 17 stadium dates on his 'No Shoes Nation' Tour, which starts Saturday , March 16 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. The Corona Light Presents Kenny Chesney's 'No Shoes Nation' Tour, starring Kenny Chesney, will feature special guest Eric Church as well as Eli Young Band and Kacey Musgraves. Several tour dates will also feature the GRAMMY-Award winning Zac Brown Band (Sony Press Release)

MerleFest, presented by Lowe's and slated for April 25-28, 2013, is proud to announce the music festival's initial lineup. The four-day event, an annual homecoming of musicians and music fans, will once again take place on the campus of Wilkes Community
College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina.
The initial lineup reflects the diversity and quality of performers that are the hallmark of the festival. MerleFest is known for its unique mix of traditional, roots-oriented music from the Appalachian region, including bluegrass and old-time music, Americana, blues, country, Celtic, Cajun, cowboy, zydeco, rock and many other styles that Doc Watson referred to as "traditional plus."
The MerleFest box office will open for 2013 ticket sales on Tuesday, November 13,
Line up includes: Charlie Daniels, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Matraca Berg, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Pokey LaFarge, Jim Lauderdale , Tift Merritt and Rhonda Vincent & The Rage –  More details: Press Release - Press Release -

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum will open a special spotlight exhibit dedicated to Dottie West on November 9.
Beautiful Dottie West
(Photo by Hulton Archive
/Getty Images)

Dottie West: Country Sunshine will include costumes and relics spanning Dottie’s four-decade career and be housed within the museum’s permanent exhibit on the second floor. It will run through May 2, 2013.
The exhibit will trace Dottie’s journey from her humble beginnings in Tennessee and an abusive father to an award-winning member of the Grand Ole Opry, culminating with her death in 1991. Dottie charted dozens of singles, was the first female country artist to win a GRAMMY and helped launch artists such as Larry Gatlin, Jeannie Seely and Steve Wariner.
(Left)Promotional studio portrait of American country singer Dottie West (1932 – 1991), wearing cowboy boots and seated on a Western desert backdrop, circa 1979. 

Singer-Songwriter Carter Robertson will be releasing her memoir called “Playin’ On The Tracks” on Mon Nov 12th. She is the only female member of the late Waylon Jenning’s band and the mother and namesake of her sister trio CARTER’S CHORD

The RIAA has certified Taylor Swift’s “Our Song” triple-Platinum this week. She also received double-Platinum certification for “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” Platinum for “Fearless,” and Gold certifications for "Change" and "The Story Of Us."
“WANEGBT” certified 2x multi-Platinum in October, marked Taylor’s sixth career double-Platinum song award. The Big Machine Records singer’s career digital certifications represent more than 33 million downloads sold spanning 25 songs.
First Golds were awarded to country music duo Florida Georgia Line for “Cruise,”
“Blown Away” by Carrie Underwood was also certified Platinum to denote more than one million downloads sold.

Lady Antebellum received Billboard’s Breakthrough Award at the 2012 Billboard Touring Awards for their headlining Own The Night 2012 World Tour. The trophy goes to the highest grossing touring artist who cracks Billboard’s Boxscore recap for the first time in their career based on tickets sales and other touring data. The all-genre category also included Miranda Lambert and The Black Keys, and the group joins previous winners including Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake and Jason Aldean.
 Although winter storms and airport closures kept Lady A from traveling to New York City to accept the award in person Lady A's Dave Haywood said - “Mother Nature wasn't our friend this week…we would have loved to have been there to accept this in person,” said “We count this tour as one of our proudest accomplishments and want to thank our band, crew and all the fans around the world who came out to Own The Night with us.  It's a huge honor, and a responsibility to our genre, to travel around the globe representing country music.  We don't take that lightly and really appreciate the recognition."
The Breakthrough Award recognizes the band's first world tour that wrapped last month in Australia with three sold out nights at Sydney’s Opera House. More than one million fans attended the tour that kicked off in Jan. and visited 11 countries on three continents (
Related Post - When they first hit the road as an opening act the members of Lady Antebellum rarely wasted their downtime, quizzing stars like Kenny Chesney and Keith Urban and their crews on the intricacies of a successful arena tour.They employed everything they learned on their first headlining tour this year, selling more than a million tickets and visiting 11 countries.
"I think for us, once you've found out ... who had won it the previous two years with Lady Gaga and Jason Aldean, I think it definitely made it even mean a little bit more," Lady A's Charles Kelley said in a phone interview. "Hopefully, we're going to be in that company of big touring acts."
Chesney made the NY trip, though, and accepted two awards at the Roosevelt Hotel: the Road Warrior award and the top package tour. The Road Warrior honor is bestowed on an artist who shows uncommon work ethic, professionalism and artistic integrity on the road. Chesney won his eighth package award for his Brothers of the Sun stadium tour with Tim McGraw, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals and Jake Owen.
Kelley said Lady Antebellum, which will release a documentary, OWN THE NIGHT World Tour, about the tour on Dec. 4, paid close attention while on the road with Chesney. He's parlayed hit songs and high energy into his status as country's top draw for a decade. The singer showed the bandmates the level of commitment required to pull it off. (Source -

Jo Dee Messina is on the run—literally—this weekend. She’s registered to compete Nov. 11 in the 13.1-mile course at the Rock ‘n’ Roll San Antonio Marathon & 1/2 Marathon. Participating was not enough. She’s also set to perform that night in a post-run concert at the Alamodome.

Hi-Fi Fusion president Todd Cassetty has founded a management firm, Cassetty Entertainment, and signed Scotty McCreery as the first client

Eli Young Band is claiming the video for “Say Goodnight” sets a precedent as the first country music clip to feature a robot. It makes its premiere when CMT launches a Big New Music Weekend on Nov. 9.

Ty England, known a guitarist and harmony vocalist for his college roommate Garth Brooks, and whose country hits include the Top 5 "Should've Asked Her Faster," recently married his longtime friend, Justina Cardoza, in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. The couple first met several years ago in Boise, Idaho after Ty performed a concert at the Buffalo Club. Justina and a friend approached Ty after his show as he posed for photos and signed autographs.

Reba McEntire has new music with single "The New Me" which is featured in the pilot episode of her new ABC sitcom Malibu Country. It is currentlty only available in America on US iTunes – Listen >>  YouTube

Looking for a "Beer With Santa" or "Santa in a 4-Wheel drive"? Average Joes Entertainment’s first holiday collection, AN AVERAGE JOES MUDDY CHRISTMAS, part of the Mud Digger album series, is now available online. Muddy Christmas was produced by the label’s own Shannon “Fat Shann” Houchins and features holiday classics and original songs from Average Joes’ artists including Colt Ford, The LACS, Montgomery Gentry, as well as John Anderson and more.
From Colt Ford’s, “Home For Christmas,” a song from Colt’s heart about slowing down and being thankful for family & friends, to The LACS’ lighthearted “Santa in a 4-Wheel Drive,” which finds Santa’s sleigh slingin’ in the Mud, to the timeless classic, “Do You Hear What I Hear,” by Josh Gracin, “An Average Joes Muddy Christmas” offers a diverse collection of holiday songs

Lorrie Morgan, the multi-platinum songstress introduces a new tune in anticipation and a celebration of the 2012 holiday season and suitably dressed for the occasion titled “Wrapped Up In Love” presented by Octabrook Records.

Addressed to the North Pole’s man of mystery, the flirtatious number is adorned with jingle bells, Santa’s “ho-ho-ho’s” and a nod to the movie Love Actually as a playful introduction.
A co-write by notorious members of the Music Row songwriting community (Oliverius/Cole/Linville), the single is lined with light-hearted lyrics and a poppy spirit. Combined with the strength of Morgan’s signature vocals, the tune is poised to become a holiday favorite and is set to arrive on the doorsteps of radio stations around the country in mid-November (CDX Volume 559).
Released Oct 29, 2012 it’s available on UK iTunesUS iTunes -  Artwork
Lorrie’s upcoming extravaganza: Lorrie Morgan’s Enchanted Christmas Dinner & Show at the world renowned Opryland hotel beginning November 16 through December 25, 2012 in Nashville, Tenn.
Something about the mistletoe-time-of-year brings out my child-like nature and flirtatious cheer,” said Ms. Morgan. “’Wrapped Up In Love,’ I hope, will become one of the ‘go-to’ songs when decorating the tree or gathering with friends near a crackling fireplace while watching the snow fall.”
Lorrie has been in the studio to record her forthcoming album alongside longtime friend, fellow Opry member and Grits & Glamour touring partner, Pam Tillis. The new album is anticipated in spring 2013.

Erica Nicole lights up the holiday season with her sophomore Christmas single, “Come on a Sleigh Ride”. The heartwarming tune was released to radio on Monday November 5th.
Blurb: Showing off her upbeat vocals, Come on a Sleigh Ride was a collaborative effort between Erica Nicole and renowned producer, Michael Lloyd. Not only has Lloyd accumulated in excess of 100 gold and platinum records, but he was responsible for recording artist Kimberly Locke’s #1 Christmas hits for three consecutive years.
Christmas is always a great time for music,” said Michael. “I hope everyone loves Erica’s single as much as I do.”
Two-time Grammy nominee and award-winning songwriter, Johnny Tillotson is also a featured vocalist on Come on a Sleigh Ride.
It’s great to have someone that’s not only a friend, but also a legendary performer featured on the single,” said Erica. “The line moving like poetry in motion was brought to life in this song through Johnny’s vocals and inspired by his hit single in 1961, Poetry In Motion”

Aaron Lewis has been chosen as the NRA Country Artist Of The Month for November. The frontman for multi-platinum selling rock band Staind, Aaron is heading back to his country roots with the release of his first full-length solo album, THE ROAD, on November 13, 2012. He joins some of country music’s biggest artists in teaming up with NRA Country to celebrate his support of our brave men and women in uniform, appreciation for the great outdoors, and love of family.
"I love what NRA Country stands for,” says Lewis. “I love my family.  I love this country and the rights and freedoms that this great nation gives to each of us. I am Aaron Lewis and I am NRA Country."
Past featured artists include: Justin Moore, Lee Brice, Montgomery Gentry, Trace Adkins, Craig Morgan, Sunny Sweeney, Rodney Atkins, Gretchen Wilson, Josh Thompson, Love and Theft, Easton Corbin, Heidi Newfield, and TV personality Storme Warren
NRA Country states: Is a celebration of American values. Respect. Honor. Freedom. It's a lifestyle and a bond between the country music community and hard-working Americans everywhere. It's powered by pride, freedom, love of country, respect for the military, and the responsibilities of protecting the great American life (Webster & Associates PR)
The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) is an American non-profit lobbying group that advocates for the protection of the Second Amendment of the United States Bill of Rights, and the promotion of firearm ownership rights as well as marksmanship, firearm safety, and the protection of hunting and self-defense in the United States

Musicians For Mitt” continued during the final stretch to bring Governor Mitt Romney and Congressman Paul Ryan to The White House. Kid Rock will perform the final event tonight for Gov. Romney in Manchester, New Hampshire, while Randy Owen will bring the campaign trail for Congressman Ryan to a close in Wisconsin singing Alabama hits that lead him to become a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame.  
Hitting Ohio during the final two-days included performances by Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Sam Moore, The Marshall Tucker Band, country star Rodney Atkins, gospel-country group The Oak Ridge Boys, and Tim Rushlow (lead singer of hit-making group Little Texas), while various other artists including Big & Rich, Trace Adkins, Meat Loaf, John Ondrasik (Five for Fighting), Cowboy Troy, Lee Greenwood, Ricky Skaggs, Mark Wills, Lorrie Morgan, JoDee Messina, The Roys, Jamie O’Neal, Bryan White, Jett Williams, Baillie & The Boys, Lisa Matassa, Jeff Foxworthy, Collin Raye, John Michael Montgomery, T.G. Sheppard and more have criss-crossed the United States to entertain crowds at rally events - Webster & Associates PR

Lisa Matassa soars on her new EP, the intimate collection, SOMEBODY'S BABY, and the December 4 release hits all the right notes for fans of edgy, rockin' Country. Blurb:  With a voice that blends the soulfulness of Southern Gospel with a bit of "city polish" and a dose of Country/Rock flair, this EP is by far her best project yet.  Produced by Tony Bruno (Rihanna, Enrique Iglesias), and recorded in Nashville and New York, the It Is What It Is Records / Nine North Records release features outstanding musicianship. 
The New York songstress co-wrote three of the tracks (“Wouldn’t You Like to Know,” “Girl with a Rock ’n Roll Heart," "Learning as You Grow”) and adds three stunning covers of hits made famous by Dolly Parton, Bryan Adams and Nat King Cole.  The EP's first single is “Somebody’s Baby,” a new song written by hit-makers Kelly Archer, Casey Koesel and Justin Weaver. (More details -

The Marshall Tucker Band is seeking donations for items to be delivered to Hurricane Sandy victims in the Northeast.
On Thursday (Nov 8) in Spartanburg, South Carolina, the legendary southern rock group will dispatch its tour truck to collect donations that will be ransported to hurricane victims.  The Marshall Tucker Band tour truck will be stationed outside of the Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium from 4:30 to 7:30 PM. Additional trucks are also in the works for donation collections in Anderson and Chesnee, South Carolina (Absolute Publicity Press)

Ryan Adams: Losering, a Story of Whiskeytown (American Music (University of Texas)) [Paperback] ISBN-10: 0292725841
Before he achieved his dream of being an internationally known rock personality, Ryan Adams had a band in Raleigh, North Carolina. Whiskeytown led the wave of insurgent-country bands that came of age with No Depression magazine in the mid-1990s, and for many people it defined the era. Adams was an irrepressible character, one of the signature personalities of his generation, and as a singer-songwriter he blew people away with a mature talent that belied his youth.
Read an exerpt from the book at

Nashville Cinderella is the story of an aspiring country singer dreaming of love and fame while working as a waitress in the country music capital of Nashville, Tennessee. The book is published as a large print paperback and available to borrow from local libraries (Norfolk libraries have 13 copies) or to buy online from Amazon - Nashville Cinderella [Kindle Edition] £4.99
It’s a light-hearted love story written like an episode of Friends .

Well, it’s a Cinderella story set in Nashville! Cindy is a singing waitress working in a retro-themed diner in the heart of Music City while dreaming of finding love and fame as a country star. The short order cook is her Buttons figure and Prince Charming is her vintage suit-wearing, 1957 Chevrolet-driving manager Hank. But can he get her to the ball, or in this case the CMA Awards?”
There's a little bit more to debutante romantic novelist Julia Douglas than meets the eye! The author of Nashville Cinderella is actually a fella - Wicklewood-based UK journalist Douglas McPherson who writes for Country Music People.
 The reason for the sex change, says (Julia) Douglas is: "Romance novels are aimed at women and there's a belief in the publishing world that women prefer to buy books by women authors and men prefer books by male writers. It's why JK Rowling uses her initials - because she didn't want boys to be put off of reading a book by a woman."

Ronnie Dunn in a Facebook Blog baby “boomers and beyond” gives his thoughts on the digital era and how they’ve have been left behind by the music business ! Extract: It's not that you have AGED OUT. Statistics show that you do not download. Record labels live by research and statistics.Guess who hasn't shown up IN MASS as a buying group on the download / digital front.......YOU.
I've said for years that the final straw needed to complete the final transformation to an all digital playing field for music will be the day that automobile (PICKUP TRUCK) manufacturers stop putting cd players in cars. Well, it's happened. Ford announced, in July that it is phasing out cd players in it's vehicles.
If you're a baby boomer and feeling like YOUR kind (genre) of music ..."country music", etc. has been tossed by the wayside and you have been left in the dust, this is your opportunity to take your COUNTRY back. Do yourself a favor. Learn to download asap. ..
...The music business has, most definitely placed it's focus and energy on developing a MUCH YOUNGER than normal demographic because the market has become digital. Baby boomers and beyond do not download music like Generation X.
The music industry, especially the "COUNTRY" music, "do or die" fashion, leap frogged over your age group to get to that very young demographic….

Dallas News Pop music: If it were the ’70s, they’d be stars: 10 deserving, underrated singer-songwriters
Extract: The ’70s were good to Brown [Jackson]. In fact, the ’70s were very good to introspective singer-songwriters with personal lyrics and indelible melodies that felt universal to an audience craving a soundtrack to call their own.

Now in 2012 — an era of loud, overproduced pop, hip-hop, teen pop sensations, sex-crazed R&B, TV singing competition contestants and guttural modern metal — a handful of worthy singer-songwriters who would have been all over the radio in the ’70s will forever be critically acclaimed artists on small record labels, playing modest venues and struggling to make a name for themselves. They remain largely undiscovered by the masses. Yet their artistry speaks volumes to those who listen.
Here are eight singer-songwriters and a couple of bands who would have been huge 40 years ago
Gretchen Peters: Criminally underrated as a recording artist, Peters found her grandest success writing songs that others turned into hits — “Independence Day” for Martina McBride, “You Don’t Even Know Who I Am” for Patty Loveless and “The Secret of Life” for Faith Hill. Peters continues to make exceptional albums such as her latest, Hello Cruel World.
Mindy Smith: The Long Island, N.Y., native stands somewhere in that gray area that separates folk from rock, country from bluegrass, Americana from alternative. That’s why she’s never enjoyed commercial kudos, all the while taking home widespread critical praise. But she’s got a fan in Dolly Parton, among others, and recently went independent with her fourth studio disc, Mindy Smith…. Full article

Peter Cooper The Tennessean: Gram Parsons’ legacy more than a lifetime in the making
Extract: Well, he’s not in the Country Music Hall of Fame, or the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
And he never had a hit record during a life that ended at age 26 after a drug overdose in Room 8 of the Joshua Tree Inn.
And he was thought of by many folks, including some of his closest friends, as a screwup who seldom saw an opportunity he couldn’t squander.
So why are there 10 available books about Gram Parsons’ life and music, when there’s not one full-length biography of Merle Haggard and only one of the Everly Brothers?.......Parsons’ legacy also benefited from re-evaluation of the one album he made with The Byrds, 1968’s “Sweetheart of the Rodeo.” When released, “Sweetheart” was largely considered a country-inflected mistake from what had been, until Parsons entered the picture, one of America’s greatest rock bands. But “Sweetheart” ultimately came to be seen as a landmark album that fused country and rock sensibilities long before such things became commonplace. Like Parsons, “Sweetheart” was ahead of its time… Read Full article

Taylor Swift: NPR’s All Things Considered. 'My Confidence Is Easy To Shake' 22, the commercial powerhouse says she's stopped worrying whether her songs are too personal  >> Audio Link  - Full Transcript

Taylor - NPR Image
Music Blog The Guardian - Do you still collect physical music? What do you do with it?

Rolling Stone Inside the Music of 'NASHVILLE' - Stars and producers strive for authenticity, and it's paying off .
Over the past four weeks, primetime viewers have watched a tangled, soapy web of "love, power, money, family and music" unfold on  ABC's country music drama Nashville. With every episode, those viewers have essentially had an album of new, original music
revealed to them one, two, three tracks at a time. Though the show's ratings have been uneven, the songs are making quite a commercial mark. At press time, six Nashville tracks grace the iTunes country songs chart.

We Retro Media: Vinyl, VHS, Tapes & Film - We live in a digital world that gives us all the media we could possibly dream of at the click of a mouse, yet many people miss the old school physical formats from our past. Listening to vinyl and cassettes allows us to connect with music in a different way than MP3s. VHS and 8mm create visual aesthetics and atmospheres that are difficult to replicate in digital video....The challenges these retro formats present to capturing and experiencing media actually enhance our appreciation for the sound or image, making the art we love a bit more intimate, and real.  >> YouTube

No Depression has an interview with Australian duo Kasey Chambers and Shane Nicholson on "Wreck & Ruin" who have returned with their follow-up to 2008's Rattlin' Bones with their new collection of songs, Wreck & Ruin. Extract: In the classic tradition of such greats as Gram and Emmylou and George and Tammy, Kasey and Shane have crafted two rewarding albums that only hint at each of their solo work. Both Rattlin' Bones and Wreck & Ruin are filled with tunes that only Kasey and Shane could conjure out of each other together and give life to together.

Billboard 615 Spotlight: Josh Doyle Breaks Through: Extract: This week, the 615 wants to give you a look at an artist that might very well be the "Next Big Thing" on an international level. There are some elements of country, or even bluegrass in the music of Josh Doyle, but the Nashville-based singer-songwriter is much too varied musically to be put in just one musical genre. In fact, according to our ears, he -- while not imitating them -- could very be one of those artist that stand by themselves musically, a la John Mayer or Josh Groban

George Strait brand new single “Give It All We Got Tonight” released on Monday, Oct. 29 to country radio. The single was recorded in Nashville and penned by Tim James, Phil O’Donnell and Mark Bright and is the first from Strait’s forthcoming album.  Strait once again collaborated with longtime producer, Tony Brown, on the music. “The song has a very unusual melody and very cool phrasing, which I’ve always been drawn to,” shared Strait.  >> YouTube

Carrie Newcomer's new release, Kindred Spirits: A Collection will be released by Rounder Records on Tuesday, November 13. Until then, you can enjoy listening to the album in its entirety at
This generous collection of 19 songs draws from Newcomer’s catalogue of 12 Rounder Records releases. It also includes two previously unreleased songs, two songs from her special hunger benefit project (Everything is Everywhere) featuring Indian classical sarod masters Amjad Ali Khan, Ayaan and Amaan Ali Khan, as well as two currently unavailable live recordings.
The two new songs, “The Speed of Soul” and “A Long Christmas Dinner” were recorded and produced by Newcomer, Robert Meitus and David Weber at Airtime Studios. “The Speed of Soul” is a poignant exploration of a more deliberate relationship to time in an increasingly fast-paced culture. “A Long Christmas Dinner” creates a portrait of life and family as part of an ongoing continuum.
 In the songs “I Believe,” “Geodes” and “Holy as a Day is Spent,” Newcomer quietly and beautifully describes the presence of something extraordinary in the midst of our ordinary days. She sings, “God walks around in muddy boots, sometimes rags and that’s the truth” and “Folding sheets like folding hands, to pray as only laundry can.” “Before and After” explores the large and small experiences by which we mark our lives through a haunting duet with Mary Chapin Carpenter, resulting in a remarkable combination of two of acoustic music’s most rich and resonant females. “The Gathering of Spirits,” featuring Alison Krauss, is a clear voiced and crystalline celebration of this twinkling moment in time we call life.

Reba McEntire had a live chat on Friday evening (Nov 2), you can now watch the entire chat online. Reba answered fan questions, premiered new music and took calls from special guests including Lily Tomlin, Sara Rue and Jai Rodriguez - rebas-live-ustream-chat

Little Big Town  Tornado” >> YouTube

Joe Pug's official Video for "Hymn #76" from the 2012 Album "The Great Despiser". Featuring Joe Pug on vocals and acoustic guitar, Greg Tuohey on electric guitar, and Matt Schuessler on upright bass >> YouTube

Faith Hill Official Video "American Heart"  >> YouTube
Carrie Underwood was a guest star on “LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON” on (Nov 8)  They gave the audience a treat by showing clips from their days as the singing duo "JIM CARRIE," performing Country Rap songs, known as "C'Rap !
>>  YouTube

Taylor Swift wore Prada platform pumps when she helped kick off the holiday season in London for the Westfield Christmas Lights tradition. These heels feature nude leather, small platform and tapered heel. They can be purchased online in nude at Saks Fifth Avenue, nude & black at Prada and in grey at Nordstrom. At the Christmas Switch on she wore a below-the-knee vintage red dress and was last seen wearing these these pumps for her recent CD Launch appearance on ‘Good Morning America’ last month.

Taylor Swift left her hotel and headed off to BBC Radio 2 studios in London on Wednesday morning (Nov 7) with some media duties. Simon Mayo has recorded Taylor Swift for later Drivetime consumption. She was wearing a French Connection Polka Dot Print Sweater ($108.00 - Link), chic Theory Testra Tailor Pants made from Italian bistretch wool and wore O Jour Ballet flats.

Carrie Underwood hosting the 2012 CMA Award’s had a total of 11 wardrobe changes. Her footwear included:
a) wearing Gio Diev Roanne booties (image). These heels are from the Fall 2012 collection featuring black patent leather and gold mesh and open-toe.
b) Later in the show she also wore gold Palma ankle-strap sandals by Gio Diev
c) Carrie performed single ‘Blown Away’ and wore a Tsemaye Binitie gown with grey sheer sleeves wearing Jerome C. Rousseau Quorra sandals (image). These sandals were designed for a special collaboration with Disney for the movie ’TRON’ in 2010. They feature an open-toe with layers of pewter patent leather, platform and ankle-strap. Quorra is available online at Footcandy.
d) Carrie’s Jerome C. Rousseau Orner sandals (image) are from the Fall 2012 collection featuring pewter lizard-embossed leather, swirly geometric straps and double platform. Orner is available online in silver at Shopbop and Pink Mascara for $477.
Her 11 wardrobe transformations throughout the CMA 2012 show topped Eva Longoria’s 10 outfits when she hosted the Europe MTV Music Awards in 2010.

Taylor Swift has come under fire for allegedly stealing a Matt Nathanson lyric from 2003 and using it in her song All Too Well,’ a track on her new album ‘Red.’
Matt Nathanson, 39, is accusing Taylor of stealing a line he wrote back in 2003 in his song called “I Saw.”

He tweeted, and later deleted, on Oct. 24, “she’s definitely a fan… and now she’s a thief.”
The blog Oh No They Didn’t! pointed out the similar lyrics on Oct. 31, adding, “I wouldn’t think much about it normally except for the fact that she is a fan of his…she has written HIS lyrics on her arm at her concerts before [during her Speak Now tour].”

Faith Hill Reveals Braces at CMA Awards – Yes if you looked really closely during the 2012 CMA Awards red carpet last week you noticed Faith Hill sporting a different look. The singer revealed she has had braces (teeth) about four months during an interview with KNIX - ”Gracie, our oldest daughter has braces and Maggie our middle daughter has braces,” Faith said, also admitting she has trouble remembering her retainer.The singer had braces as a kid, but it looks like they may not have had lasting effects.
Faith performed a “brace” of songs at the CMA’s first her latest single “America Heart” and then took part in the Wilie Nelso tribute covering  “Good Hearted Woman”

Jake Owen and wife Lacey revealed to Taste of Country that their new bundle of joy would be wrapped in pink. The baby girl is due this month, and the couple plans to name her Olive Pearl Owen. Pearl is Jake’s godmother’s middle name. She passed away in July just months after learning the couple was expecting. It turns out Jake’s parents weren’t totally on board with the “Olive” part of the name until they learned Drew Barrymore named her daughter Olive. “Which made my mom and dad think it was cooler … they thought of Olive Oyl,” Owen said.

According to to AOL’s The Boot, Miranda Lambert plans to open her first store, Pink Pistol, in Oklahoma on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving which is traditionally one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Lambert says the store will offer “pretty much everything.” But her favorite item is a glittering pink bicycle ecause as she says she’s really 12 at heart.

Could Taylor Swift be helping thousands ring in the New Year in Times Square? Well, it’s a very distinct possibility. In fact, during a recent visit to Jimmy Fallon,” Ryan Seacrest all but confirmed it. “We haven’t announced it yet, but wouldn’t it be great if we could get, there’s a female artist out there that’s setting records in terms of what she’s selling, recently. She loves the color red. And if you’re with her, you may never, ever, ever, be back together with her. And she loves a good break-up anthem.”

Taylor Swift's friends think she puts too much pressure on her relationships. The 'We Are Never Ever Ever Getting Back Together' hitmaker who recently split from Conor Kennedy has dated John Mayer, Jake Gyllenhaal and Joe Jonas - is much too busy for a boyfriend according to her pals who blame her unsuccessful love life on her hectic career. Friends close to the country star told US Weekly magazine: "All Taylor wants is to be loved. She's a prisoner of her work. It takes up all of her time. She overworks relationships. She puts so much pressure on them, it ultimately kills the deal. Then she's baffled as to why it didn't work”.
"It's like she's analysing love like a scientist, rather than just feeling it. It's ironic that she is a multi-millionaire from singing about love”
"With each relationship, she's less and less naive about the reality of dating.  She is starting to realise it's not this imaginary fantasy with princes on horses sweeping you away.".

One Direction’s Harry Styles has sparked rumours he is romancing Taylor Swift again after the pair were spotted wearing matching necklaces.

 “CMT Radio Live” host Cody Alan (@cmtcody) gave periodic red-carpet updates during the Nov. 1 Country Music Assn. Awards, including this observation about Carrie Underwood: “Co-host @CarrieUnderwood just pulled up looking stunning in dress #1. Only 456 outfit changes to go...”

Sony Music has unveiled a graphic installation documenting the company's 125 year musical history. Designed by Alex Fowkes, winner of Creative Review's "One to Watch" in 2011, the Sony Music Timeline runs throughout the central atrium of Sony's open plan Derry Street offices.The Installation features nearly 1000 names of artists signed to Sony Music and its affiliated labels from the foundation of Columbia Records in 1887 to the present day.  Link -

Dramatic photos in the Australian Weather Calendar 2013 -

Frank Peppiatt, the co-creator of "Hee Haw," a landmark variety show mixing country music with "corny" humor that became one of
TV's most unlikely and longest-running hits, has died. He was 85. Peppiatt died Wednesday in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., of bladder cancer, according to family spokeswoman Jenna Illies.

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