Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Country Bites News snippets Jan 21 - Jan 27, 2013


Country Bites News snippets January 21 – January 27, 2013

SOURCES/LINKS show in RED

UK & IRISH News
It’s Congratulations to Robert Mizzell who will be marrying his beautiful fiancée Adele Spear at the end of this year when they will have been together for three-and-a-half years. Robert and Adele, who hail from Castlederg, Co. Tyrone, have known each other for many years. As well as being a solo performer Robert is one of the THE THREE AMIGOS (Patrick Feeney Jimmy Buckley Robert Mizzell). He was raised in Louisiana, spending a lot of time in foster care as a child due to issues in the family home. Robert’s latest solo album project is titled Sings Garth Brooks

Mary Duff the popular singer and long-time touring partner for Daniel O’Donnell will receive a Female Vocalist of the Year Award this week at the Sunday World Country Music Awards in Mullingar.

BBC Radio Essex presenter and singer-songwriter Steve Cherelle has took over the running of the Country Roads club from Colin & Sue who have retired. Steve hosts the music night, book acts and runs a raffle. The first night SOLD out.
Steve Cherelle

When: It takes place every month on the last Wednesday of each month. The first live act was Cardy & Coke who are Wes Cardy (lead/harmony vocals and rhythm guitar) and Jan Mellon (vocals, guitar, mandolin and shaky things).
Where: 16 – 18, Clarence Street, Southend Conservative Club, Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS11 1BD
* Future acts will be Lucy Lee, Kevin Barry, Pure Country and Hayley Oliver.

Forthcoming Bob Harris Sessions on BBC Radio 2 will include:
February 14, 2013 - with "NRA hot guns" and ACM-nominated country duo Love and Theft  (Stephen Barker Liles and Eric Gunderson). Then on February 28, 2013 with Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell and on March 7, 2013 with C2C Festival headliner Tim McGraw

Shetland fiddler Aly Bain and English folk/rock singer, songwriter and guitarist Roy Harper will be given Lifetime Achievement Awards and the author of one of Scotland's most loved songs Caledonia, Dougie MacLean, will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for Contribution to Songwriting. Mark Radcliffe and Julie Fowlis will present the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2013 live from the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Wednesday, January 30.

UK CHART NEWS
On the Official UK Singles Top 100 Chart (Week February 2, 2013)
Taylor Swift’sI Knew You Were Trouble” (Mercury) moves 4-3. The dub-step single sold 38,977 copies to reach 389,365 after 16 retail weeks. Her smash hit “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” falls 44-51 in its 23rd chart week,selling 6,900 copies and has a UK tally to date of 499,582. Her signature song “Love Story” moves into the Top 100 from 117-86

On the Official UK Albums Top 100 (Week February 2, 2013)
Taylor Swift’s RED sold  copies holds at No.12 . RED sold 6,650 copies and it has now sold 267,031 in 14 weeks. 

Official UK Country Album (Week February 2, 2013)
Glen Campbell with GHOST ON THE CANVAS moves from 3-1 to top the chart.
Lady Antebellum drop 1-2 with NEED YOU NOW (Capitol) in its 79th chart week and their album OWN THE NIGHT drops one place 2-3 in its 53rd chart week. Rascal Flatts self titled album returns to the Top 20 at #14 after racking up 123 chart weeks.

On the Hotdisc Chart (Jan 27, 2012 Chart)
British singer songwriter Graham Clark's "I'm Not Inclined" stays at No.1 on the Hotdisc Top 40 as well as the British & Irish Top 10. The top three Top 40 remains static with R Michael Rhodes and Paula MacAskill entering the top 10 for the first time. New entries in the Top 20 are from Lino, at #20 with “I Won’t Stand In Your Way” (Marty Rivers / Joe Spiteri) and Keyth Youngster moves 23-19 with a cover of Richard Marx hot song “Take This Heart”. Both tracks are on the 2013 January Hotdisc 167 release.

UK COUNTRY ALBUM RELEASES

(Dec 4, 2012) Taylor Swift - Red [Vinyl] (UPC 843930007103) www.smartchoicemusic.com 

(15 Jan 2013) Katie Armiger - Fall Into Me (Cold River Records) currently Digital available on UK iTunes only
CD Format (UPC 894227002325) www.smartchoicemusic.com

(21 Jan 2013) Ricky Skaggs - Music To My Ears (Skaggs Family Records) Amazon UK CD Format
(22 Jan 2013) Randy Houser - How Country Feels [Import] (Stoney Creek Records) - Amazon UK CD Format
(22 Jan 2013) Lone Bellow [Import] Lone Bellow (Descendant Records) - Amazon UK CD Format

(22 Jan 2013) Don Rich - Sings George Jones [Import] (Omnivore Recordings) Total Time: 33:43
Though Don Rich achieved greatness as Buck Owens' band leader, guitarist, fiddler, harmony vocalist and musical foil, his solo stardom stayed on the backburner - Amazon UK CD Format - Amazon UK MP3 Downloads

(29 Jan 2013) John Corbett - Leaving Nothin Behind [Import]  (Funbone Records) Time 37:34  10 tracks
(29 Jan 2013) Terri Clark - Classic [Import] Amazon UK CD Format

(29 Jan 2013) Amber Digby - The World You're Living In (Heart of Texas Records) Time: 39:48; 14 tracks

Digital tracks available at:
CD Format UPC 823043460620 at www.smartchoicemusic.com (£12.99)

(30 Jan 2012) Transatlantic Sessions - Series 5 [DVD] featuring Aly Bain, Jerry Douglas, Eric Bibb, Bela Fleck, Alison Krauss
Run Time: 207 minutes - Amazon UK


(4 Feb 2013) The Mavericks - In Time (Decca/Big Machine) 14 tracks - Amazon UK CD Format

BLUEGRASS NEWS
The Spinney Brothers, "Canada's International Bluegrass Band," scored a first career #1 on Bluegrass Unlimited's  Top 30 Songs chart for February. For info East Public Relations (press relese)

AUSSIE NEWS
The CMAA 2013 Golden Guitar Awards were held at the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Conference Centre on Saturday, January 26, 2013. Troy Cassar-Daley has the big winner with four awards, including Male Artist of the Year, Single of the Year for 'Country Is', APRA Song of the Year for 'Home', and Album of the Year for Home. Catherine Britt, won Female Artist of the Year, Chelsea Basham, took out Telstra New Talent of the Year, Kasey Chambers and Shane Nicholson, won Group or Duo of the Year while video clip of the year went to The McClymonts. (See Separate Blog Post)

The McClymonts  were inducted into the Galaxy of the Stars out at TREC in Tamworth and they have their our own star! Thankyou Tamworth, we are very honored - Photo

GERMAN NEWS
Between 1 - 3rd February 2013, the 18th International Country Music Messe Berlin will take place for the first time at the Urania (west of the city, An der Urania 17, Berlin).
More than 350 musicians from more than 15 countries around the world will perform live show at the various stages during the three days at Urania.

The event stemmed from an idea back in 1996 from today's organizer Kai Ulatowski and his former partner Manfred Müller. It is largest Country Music Fair outside the U.S. and for many years has attracted thousands of fans, artists and journalists in early
February to Berlin. Here is this years 3 Day Programme Line Up: www.countrymusicmesse.de PDF File

The Deutschen Countrypreis 2013 (German Country Price 2013) ceremony takes place during the International Country Music Messe Berlin on Feb 1, 2013. In its third year awards are handed out in 7 categories, for the highest Country awards currently in Germany. 
There is a "fan favorite" category again including 20 artists and bands to choose from. Fans had an opportunity to vote by phone for their favorites from 1 November 2012 to 15 January 2013. Last year’s winner was singer Henry Eye.
Here is the list of all the nominations for each category - Musik-News

** For up to date daily Country news bulletins visit - www.country-mag.de
** For Country Music 24/7 tune in / stream - countrymusic24.com

For a terrific Country Music online monthly Publication check out Western Mail a 20+ Page magazine (ISSN 0944-0658)
Kai Ulatowski is the Editor. It has a great layout with articles, concert, artist, DVD and album reviews from a team of contributors. It is available to view by flip-through online feature!
** Use the “ZOOM” feature to switch from double to single page and to enlarge the text. It can be viewed Full Screen
Here is the 2013 February Issue and the 2013 January Issue = GENIESSEN! (ENJOY!)

TV Drama "Nashville" is coming to Germany faster than generally expected, the TV channel FOX in Germany will broadcast the TV series Nashville.The pilot episode runs on 26 February from 21:50 clock on the FOX Channel. Details

TV-TIPPS für Februar 2013
05.02. 20:15 Kabel 1 ”Der Planet der Affen” (The Planet of the Apes), USA 2000 With M. Wahlberg, H. Bonham, K. KRISTOFFERSON
06.02. 18:25 arte “Der Oregon Trail“, USA 2012 
07.02. 18:25 arte “Highway 50“, USA 2012
08.02. 18:25 arte “Route 66“, USA 2012
09.02. 15:00 arte ”Billy the Kid”
26.02. 21:50 FOX Nashville (Nashville), USA 2012 TV Series - Pilot staring Connie Britton, Hayden Panettiere, Eric Close
27.02. 02:35 FOX Nashville (Nashville)

When Taylor Swift visited Germany last year, she did a photo shoot with Thilo Schmuelgen for Glamour GermanyImage 1Image 2

NEWS
John Corbett has been seen on TV’s “Northern Exposure” and “Sex in the City” and heard as the voice of commercials for Walgreens and Applebee’s. He found an additional outlet with his self-titled debut album, and his second, LEAVING NOTHIN’ BEHIND (due Feb. 5), leans heavily on Jon Randall, who wrote seven of the 10 songs and co-produced with Gary Paczosa. Corbett’s approach to music it that it provides a different medium for his creativity and provides the opportunity to see his fan base in the flesh.

Lady Antebellum debuted their new single “Downtown”. Apparently Miranda Lambert was originally to record it but she passed it up to let Lady A record it because she preferred their rendition.
Full size Single Artwork Image 1500 x 1500 
Here is Lady A's lyric vid >> YouTube
The new “Pet Sounds”? - Yes it not a cover Petula Clark's #1 US and #2 UK hit but in 1984 Dolly Parton covered “Downtown” gaining cross-over appeal charting #87 Billboard Hot 100 Pop as well as #27 on Hot Country Charts.
Hillary Scott sings lead on the new single and sassily asks why her partner doesn’t take her out and show her off anymore. (There’s a playfulness we haven’t heard on a Lady A single since “Lookin’ for a Good Time.”)
Lady Antebellum talked exclusively with EW about the new single 'Downtown' – music-mix.ew.com

WSOC 103.7 presenter Tanner on the “Tanner in the Morning” show brought up American Idol & how Hillary got rejected twice. But it wasn’t salt on the wound, and Hillary is still a fan of the show! Because they are both pregnant (and women) Hillary and presenter Guenn got to talking about all things baby and how their respective pregnancies are going.  When the topic got to picking a name, Hillary made it clear that “Tanner” could be making the short list!  >> Audio

In other related News - Warner Music Nashville Vp/Brand Management Kelli Cashiola Haywood (the wife of Lady A’s Dave Haywood) exited the company on Jan 18th. She said  WMN and I left on great terms. It was just time for new adventure for me. I will be able to talk about my next move soon!”

In this week, Gary Allan released SET YOU FREE (MCA Nashville) on US iTunes, marking his ninth studio album. The album catapulted to #1 on the iTunes (all genre) Album Chart, his highest debut on iTunes to date. The lead single “Every Storm (Runs Out Of Rain)” has already sold over 700,000 downloads, has been certified gold and is quickly approaching platinum. The song blazed a fire fueled trail up the Billboard Hot Country Singles Chart and shows promise of being Allan’s fifth #1 hit. The album (originally slated for a March release) was moved up two months due to the overwhelming response to his single at radio.

Brantley Gilbert & Jana Kramer, are engaged! People magazine reported Brantley popped the question to Jana on Sunday, Jan. 20, his 28th birthday - “We could not be happier!” the couple told the magazine in a statement. “We are so excited to share this special time with our loved ones and cannot wait to start the rest of our lives together
Gilbert proposed in Nashville at the historic Ryman Auditorium Theater, which he rented out for the day. It is also the site of the
former Grand Ole Opry stage, where iconic country couple Johnny Cash and June Carter met.
"I was so surprised!" admits Kramer, 29. "He asked my mom for permission before he proposed, which meant a lot to me.
Seems like the lovely actress is now a Biker Chick - Image

Brantley Gilbert made his “acting” debut on Wednesday night, the 23rd, on the ABC drama, Nashville. Although acting is different than being on stage and performing, Brantley says, “No, I won’t say I was nervous the first time I was on the scene in Nashville. It was actually a lot of fun.”

On the show he and Chris Young play themselves and attend a party with Connie Britton’s character, Rayna James. “I’ve hung out with Chris a few times,” says Brantley, “but we had plenty of time to talk and get to know each other and even talked about getting together on a song sometime in the near future. So I won’t say it was nervous, you know, me and Chris were joking around. He made it pretty easy.”
One person who also helped Brantley was his girlfriend, Jana Kramer, who happens to be an actress as well as a singer. He says, “She definitely had some pointers but, you know, the part was playing myself so it wasn’t all that hard. It made it pretty easy, but yeah, she definitely had some pointers. She knows what she’s doing.”
Brantley is a fan of the show Nashville, but he doesn’t get to see it too often because he’s always on the road, but he says he likes it because “It captures some aspects of the business that the outside world may not know, kind of letting ‘em in a little bit and I think it’s a cool deal.”

Taylor Swift has done her part to encourage literacy among the youth of this nation. The ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back
Together’ singer has donated books to the early literacy program at the hospital in which she was born. Despite her fame and fortune, the singer never, like, ever, forgets where she came from. Swift is a native of Wyomissing, which is located in Berks County in eastern Pennsylvania, not far from Philadelphia. Despite long ago having moved to Nashville to launch and sustain her career, she has a soft spot for home and has given back by teaming up with Scholastic, Inc. to donate 2,000 books to the Reading Hospital Child Health Center’s early literacy program.
Last year, Swift donated 14,000 books to the Nashville Public Library, which were placed in circulation and gifted to low-income families.

Taylor Swift enjoyed a long lunch with a cancer-stricken fan in Michigan on Saturday (Jan 19, 2013) after hearing about the teenager's tragic plight. The “Love Story” hit-maker became aware of 17-year-old Kayla Kincannon's year-long battle with brain cancer and her burning ambition to meet the star after her family and friends launched an online campaign to get the singer's attention. Swift and her mother spent the afternoon with Kayla and her family before presenting the teen with a gift basket and signed photos.
Kayla's father Brad Kincannon took to the family's official blog to describe "how awesome" the get-together was and post snaps of the pair. He writes, "You guys have no idea how awesome this lunch was! This was no quick meet and greet photo opp (sic). We sat and talked to Taylor and her mom for two hours, had lunch and Kayla received a gift basket, then she signed pictures!
"She is the sweetest, most down to earth person I have ever met! This was more than we ever expected! I’m so thankful to team Kayla... and everyone who made her dream come true! This was the best day ever for her and all of us!"

Taylor Swift was named the International Artist at the 2013 40 Principales Awards on Thursday (Jan. 24). Live from the Palacio de los Deportes in Madrid, Spain, Swift also took the stage for a medley of two of her biggest hits, "Love Story" (from 2008's Fearless) and "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together". Strumming her guitar, the Nashville singer began the larger-than-life performance with an acoustic jam session before launching into the latter 2012 pop smash, complete with backup dancers. Afterwards, Swift showed her humble gratitude on Twitter:
“"Tonight was my first time at the 40 Principales Awards in Madrid and it was amazing! Thanks to the fans for the International Artist Award."
Los Premios 40 Principales, is an award show by the musical radio station Los 40 Principales. It was created in 2006 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the founding of the worldwide station.

Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert kicked off their "Locked And Reloaded" tour on Thursday Jan 17 in Columbia, South Carolina. Billboard had a chance to catch the show on Friday night, as the tour made a stop in Knoxville, Tenn.

LeAnn Rimes couldn’t sing on Jimmy Kimmel Live! due to a burst blood vessel in her vocal cords. She did chat with him even tho doctors told her not to even talk. She’s been using a dry erase board to communicate at home and is on two weeks of strict vocal rest.

2/3 of Country trio Stealing Angels, Caroline Cutbirth, 29 and Jennifer Kuhle, 30 (Tayla Lynn is the other member of the trio) are set to appear on the upcoming season of Amazing Race. The trio scored a couple minor chart hits in "He Better Be Dead" and "Paper Heart" in 2010/2011 for Skyville Records.

Stealing Angels "duo" (sat bottom right)

The Amazing Race will feature roller derby mums, professional hockey players and country singers in its cast when it returns for a 22nd season, CBS announced. Eleven duos will take part in the brand new race, which will see teams travel over 30,000 miles over five continents and through nine countries
Stealing Angels band members Caroline Cutbirth (a direct descendant of Daniel Boone), and Jennifer Kuhle (John Wayne's granddaughter), will be pitted against former professional hockey players and brothers Bates Battaglia, 36, and Anthony Battaglia 33, from Raleigh, NC.
Also battling it out for the $1m grand prize are a pair of firefighters, YouTube hosts, a father and son who have both battled cancer, and twin brothers who are both OB/GYNs.
The teams will face challenges including a 10,000 feet skydive in Bora Bora, a climb at Switzerland's Eiger Mountain, and a scorpion hunt in Botswana.
The 22nd season will premiere on February 17 on CBS - Meet The 2013 Teams
About The Amazing Race – It is a reality television game show in which teams of two people, who have some form of a preexisting personal relationship, race around the world in competition with other teams. Contestants strive to arrive first at "Pit Stops" at the end of each leg of the race to win prizes and to avoid coming in last, which carries the possibility of elimination or a significant disadvantage in the following leg


Country Music is finally back in The Big Apple!! The NY Daily News reported when ‘Nash 94.7’, aka WRXP 94.7, became the first country radio station in New York City in 17 years  when WXRP New York hit the play button on Randy Houser’s “How Country Feels” on Jan. 21. It was followed by Alan Jackson's "She's Gone Country." Jackson's song includes a line that goes, "Says, I'm a simple girl myself, grew up on Long Island."
Shania and Billy Joel at
 the 2005 CMA's in NYC

The actual introduction on the Monday followed ringing bells, excerpts from several genres of music and a famous Christopher Walken clip about "more cowbell."
It was a big deal in terms of its local impact, but just as important is how it benefits country nationally. The station, which will adopt WNSH (Nash FM 94.7) as its permanent call letters, will become the flagship for a Nash brand that Cumulus will roll out in numerous forms of its own media, including radio stations in other markets, plus a magazine, a Web presence and planned live events and cable TV.
The country music industry itself has long lamented the absence of a country radio station in New York, saying that void has made it harder to get the music on the radar of those same media buyers.
Many music people feel country music itself has moved closer to the pop/rock mainstream these days.
  • The Country Music Association (CMA) Awards moved outside of Nashville for the first time when it headed north to New York, the 39th annual event was held at Madison Square Garden on Nov. 15, 2005. "We're going to take this event to a whole new level," New York mayor Michael Bloomberg - "New York City is the No. 1 media market, which will not only strengthen country music's worldwide recognition, but will also showcase the 'World's Second Home' to a whole new worldwide audience 
  • Country has also scored on mainstream TV this year, with the success of ABC's prime-time drama "Nashville."
  • Jason Aldean recently sold out the Madison Garden in ten minutes....so ther­e just might be an audience! Will they be called “Nashville North” again?
  • There were no disc jockeys when the new format started. It's common for startups to be music-intensive for some time, to let listeners know what they will be hearing.
  • Past country stations in New York have had the highest listenership of any country station in America, simply because the total pool of listeners in New York is so much larger than in the country-intense markets of the heartland.
  • "Nash" is the first country music format on a major city station since WYNY became WKTU in 1996.
  • New York has had a number of country stations over the years, from WHN in the 1960s and 1970s to WKHK and WYNY. They have featured popular hosts including Donna Hanover, Jim Kerr and Dan Daniel.

RCA NASHVILLE Miranda Lambert is the latest artist confirmed to perform at the 55th ANNUAL GRAMMY AWARDS on Sunday February 10th. She made the announcement on CBS-TV’s “THE TALK” on Tues (1/22). She will join the only other two Country artists who have been announced so far, Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

Journey and Rascal Flatts will join forces at Super Bowl 47 for an episode of CMT Crossroads. Journey and Rascal Flatts are playing together at the New Orleans Sugar Mill on Saturday, February 2 to tape the episode. Super Bowl XLVII will kickoff at 6:30pm ET on Feb 3, 2013. Will San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick expose the Baltimore Ravens? The 47th Super Bowl takes take place in New Orleans, LA at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.

Kellie Pickler was the first artist to Auction off Her Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn Truck to Benefit USO Warrior and Family Care at the first of five charity auctions held on Tues Jan 22 - www.ebay.com/roadtoramjam
As part of the Road to the Ram Jam series all five participating artists – Kellie Pickler, Brantley Gilbert, Billy Currington, Zac Brown Band, and Easton Corbin – received a one year lease on a 2012 Ram 1500 Laramie Longhorn truck.

Vince Gill, Kenny Rogers, Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers, Patty Loveless, Jo Dee Messina, Ronnie Milsap, Restless Heart and more are scheduled to perform on the very first Country Music Cruise Holland America’s MS Eurodam.
Daily concerts, comedy shows, activities, dining and stops that include locations in Saint Maarten and the Bahamas are available when the seven day luxury voyage sets sail in early 2014 (Jan 19 - Jan 26, 2014) from Ft. Lauderdale to Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Maarten and Half Moon Cay.  


Did Keith Urban start it? On Wednesday's (1/23) episode of American Idol it revealed the origins of the now infamous viral spat between Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey with Keith Urban helplessly in the middle?
The cause for the fight may have been grumpiness due to hunger and Urban's reaction to auditioner Summer Cunningham. After Cunningham sang a country leaning version of "Lean On Me," Urban asked her where she saw herself as an artist. Cunningham replied, "I did the country thing," which clearly struck an Urban nerve. "I always get thrown when people say, 'I did the country thing,'" he said. "That's like saying I did the brain surgeon thing."

A country music debate ensued between Urban, Carey and Randy Jackson to which Minaj became frustrated by Carey's need to label things. They started verbally attacking each other and Minaj stormed off the set.
The following day a this-gonna-be-bad auditioner, Ashley Smith, blew everyone away with her rendition of Carrie Underwood's "Cowboy Cassanova" to prove a great song is a great song.
With help from Keith Urban, more country Idol hopefuls made it through to Hollywood after the American Idol Chicago auditions (1/17). "What I loved about your voice is you've got this great blend of strength and vulnerability," Urban said of 17-year-old Mackenzie Wasner from Leiper's Fork, TN. "I could hear Lee Ann Womack's first record in your runs, which is very Dolly Parton-esque, as well." Wasner performed Vince Gill's "Whenever You Come Around" which was co-written by her father, Pete Wasner, who plays keys in Gill's band.
Isabelle Parell out of Centerton, IN didn't show much country-ness, but decided to borrow Urban's vocals for help on "Baby It's Cold Outside." The duet did the trick for the 15-year-old, and made skipping school totally worth it.
Brandy Neelly, 17-year-old from Louisville, KY tried out in season 11 and came back this time with a rendition of Hank Williams' classic "Your Cheatin' Heart" that won over all four judges.
  • Despite throwing buckets of cash at new judges Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban, American Idol continued its ratings decline, with the season premiere clocking in a full 19 % lower than last season's premiere and 17.8 million viewers tuning in.
  • So what went wrong? Viewers suffering reality-competition fatigue?  The widely reported Nicki and Mariah feud may have turned off fans.
Sheryl Crow is joining Team Blake. She'll step into a mentoring role on the next season of NBC's The Voice,as part of Blake Shelton's team. Sheryl tells Entertainment Tonight, "I've been friends with Blake for a few years now and am honored he invited me to be an adviser on The Voice this season." Previous Team Blake advisers include Kelly Clarkson, Reba McEntire and Miranda Lambert.

Blake Shelton the current CMA Male Vocalist & Entertainer of the Year, found himself in hot water over some disparaging remarks he made in reference to traditional country fans after website Saving Country Music (which promotes and disseminates information about REAL country music and the movements of independent and underground country artists) reported it following Blake’s most recent episode of GAC's Backstory, which first aired in December 2012 – See Blog Post
 
BABY NEWS
Danny Gokey, singer and former ‘American Idol’ Season 8 contestant can add “father” to his resume. The singer and wife Leyicet welcomed their first child, a baby boy they named Daniel Emanuel Gokey, on Sunday, Jan. 20.
PEOPLE confirmed the news of the birth. Little Daniel arrived at 9:52PM ET, he weighed 8 lbs. 11 oz.
Gokey acknowledged the fact that his job as an entertainer allows him to the luxury to design his schedule when raising his child. He said, “Thankfully, because of what I do, it will also allow me the flexibility to spend a lot of quality time with him. I have so many exciting projects ahead this year but a brand new baby is an amazing way to get the new year started. We feel really blessed!”  Gokey, 32, and Leyicet, 26, married on Jan. 29, 2012 of last year.

Chely Wright is pregnant with identical twins. The “Shut Up and Drive” hit-maker and her wife, Lauren Blitzer, are set to become first-time parents when Wright gives birth in July (13).
The gay rights activist announced the news on Howard Bragman's YouTube.com show Gwissues on Wednesday (23Jan13) after showing off her small baby bump.
She said, "We're excited to be parents and we hope we don't mess it up too badly! We're anticipating I'll be as big as a... bus or an A-frame house by around June." And the couple can't wait for motherhood. Wright, who admitted she's suffering from morning sickness, added, "We feel like God blessed us with twins. We feel our entire relationship has been blessed. We feel lucky and ready to take on the challenges."
"We're excited to be parents and we hope we don't mess it up too badly!" Wright, 42, and her wife Lauren Blitzer-Wright, 31, jokes during the chat.
The couple's twins are due in July, and Wright predicts that she'll have added a few pounds to her thin frame come summer. "We're anticipating I'll be as big as a … bus or an A-frame house by around June," she says.
Wright and Blizter-Wright married in 2011 after dating for more than a year and say that their life together has been one blessing after another.

MUSIC NEWS
HMV's debt has been gobbled up by Hilco as firm seizes control control of HMV after buying the retailer's debt from lenders, Lloyds and Royal Bank of Scotland. The retail restructuring group was reportedly the frontrunner for the struggling High Street chain and closed the deal with the groups administrator Deloitte, according to the BBC.
The debt deal gives Hilco effective control of HMV UK. Hilco already owns HMV Canada after buying the arm in 2011 for £2 million ($3.2 million). HMV went into administration on Mon, January 14 after the firm's underlying net debt grew to £176.1m (2011: £163.7m) in the six months to the end of October 2012. HMV has confirmed that gift cards can still be redeemed in stores from Tues, Jan 22.
Andy Heath, chair of UK Music, suggested the 92-year-old chain could exist with fewer, more strategically placed stores in order to take on its internet rivals, Amazon and iTunes.
Universal Music is liable for the rent on 14 of HMV's 238 UK stores, a guarantee it assumed after buying the retailer's former parent company EMI earlier this year.

Spotify strikes at French web-based music streaming service Deezer * with Orange Switzerland deal.
Orange is relaunching a set of tariffs called Orange Young, aimed at under-27s. The three tariffs all include unlimited voice calls and texts, as well as between 1GB and 10GB of monthly data, but also 12 months of Spotify Premium access. What’s more, Spotify streams won’t be counted against those monthly data limits.
* What’s Deezer all about? Here is a Reba example! - http://www.deezer.com/en/artist/7503

SINGLE / ALBUM NEWS
Thompson Square, the  Reigning ACM Top Vocal Duo and CMA Vocal Duo of the Year will release its new album, JUST FEELS GOOD, on March 26th.
The chart-topping husband/wife duo announced the news and gave fans a special sneak peek of their new album cover on CMT Hot 20 Countdown.  The duo wrote the song with Jason Sellers and Paul Jenkins, who also collaborated on the 2012 Thompson
Square hit “I Got You”. Sellers and Jenkins also were two of the writers of Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson's crossover smash “Don't You Wanna Stay”.
The track listing / songwriter credits can be viewed at www.usatoday.com

It’s a new chapter for Lauren Alaina. The country singer, who got her liftoff as the second place finisher to country superstar Scotty McCreery on Season 10 of ‘American Idol’ way back in 2011, will begin work on her sophomore album and the followup to her impressive debut, ‘Wildflower’ Alaina tweeted on Sunday, Jan. 20 that she would begin work on Album Two. Starting my album tomorrow!! — Lauren Alaina (@Lauren_Alaina) Jan 20, 2013…She also issued a tweet from the studio that afternoon - Working away in the studio. Feels great to be in here (: can’t wait for y’all to hear the new album!!!! #excitedtweet
— Lauren Alaina (@Lauren_Alaina) Jan 21, 2013

Kenny Chesney’s next single, “Pirate Flag,” ships to radio on Jan 31.
Somewhere on the Water: Maybe it’s the time of the year, the sluggish economy, the boring job or the brutal cold, but sometimes, as members of the No Shoes Nation know, you just have to let your freak flag fly. No one understands better than Kenny Chesney that need to jettison the mundane and push back against the inertia of life.
And so now in the dead of winter, the 4-time Academy of Country Music Entertainer of the Year rolls out an anthem of everyday insurrection and rebellion on one’s own terms. With “Pirate Flag,” written by David Lee Murphy (“Livin’ In Fast Forward,” “Dust on the Bottle”) and new-to-town Ross Cooperman, Chesney offers an anthem for everyman that says, “Where I am may be great, but don’t think I’ll ever surrender to the 9-to-5.” Described as: “a thrusting piece of power country that brings tempo to a boil without ever missing a beat” Sony Press Release
While the title is still under wraps, Kenny’s new album project drops April 30, a scant 10 months after the release of Welcome to the Fishbowl. That’s six weeks after the March 16 launch of his No Shoes Nation tour in Tampa.

Kim Richey is looking forward to her first album for the label Yep Roc, which will appear on 16th April. The title of the seventh studio album is called "THORN IN MY HEART. It is the first new album since "Wreck Your Wheels" from 2010 and there will be 12 new original compositions by Kim Richey. Guests slated on the album are Trisha Yearwood, Jason Isbell or Pat Sansone of the band Wilco. Richey, a trained chef, got her first recording contract at 37. As a songwriter, she enjoyed great success from her pen: "Believe Me Baby I Lied" (Trisha Yearwood) and "Nobody Wins" (Radney Foster "), as well as compositions for Brooks & Dunn, The Dixie Chicks and Patty Loveless.

Willie Nelson will release his second album of new material from new record deal Legacy Recordings on April 16, 2013 called LETS FACE THE MUSIC AND DANCE. It will be the first in a string of new albums released to commemorate Willie's 80th Birthday this year. The album recorded at Pedernales Recording Studio in Austin, Texas is produced by Buddy Cannon and features Willie’s sister Bonnie and his son Michah in addition to other stalwart members of his Family touring band.
Willie chose a range of pop, rock, jazz and country classics drawn from the 1930s ("Let's Face the Music and Dance," "Walking My Baby Back Home"), 1940s ("You'll Never Know," "I Wish I Didn't Love You So," "Shame On You") and 1950s ("Matchbox") covering evergreen songwriters Irving Berlin, Mack Gordon, Carl Perkins, Frank Loesser, Django Reinhardt and Spade Cooley, among others. For a Full track list and further info read the Press Release

The Lone Bellow released their debut album The Lone Bellow on Descendant Records on January 22nd (US iTunes). The New York trio consists of Zach Williams, Kanene Pipkin, and Brian Elmquist and the album was produced by Charlie Peacock of Civil Wars fame. Watch them perform "You Never Need Nobody" at The Living Room in NYC 8 Nov >> YouTube

Jaida Dreyer, the Streamsound Records recording artist has released her new single, “Half Broke Horses,” to Country radio.
The song, a very personal autobiographical flashback from Dreyer’s childhood, explores loss and change with a heartfelt equestrian metaphor, one which the talented horse rider turned musician is well acquainted with.
The single is the second release off her forthcoming album, I AM JAIDA DREYER, and is produced by Grammy award-winning record producer Byron Gallimore (Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Sugarland).
To listen to “Half Broke Horses,” click here: www.jaidadreyer.com
The song was co-written by Dreyer along with Brad and Brett Warren and Lance Miller – Further info Aristo PR Press
To listen to “Half Broke Horses,” click here: www.jaidadreyer.com

PRESS RELEASES
Wood & Wire, Austin’s own four-piece bluegrass and Americana band, will release its debut self-titled studio album on Feb 5, 2013.
Blurb: The album was recorded in Nashville and produced by award-winning engineer Erick Jaskowiack, whose discography includes work with The Chieftains, The Gibson Brothers and Colin Hay. WOOD & WIRE includes original compositions written by the band, showcasing the group’s tight-fitting arrangements and rich musicianship. It also features special guest Brittany Haas (Crooked Still) on fiddle. Wood & Wire has been performing select shows with Yonder Mountain String Band and will be touring this summer. More Details McGuckin Entertainment PR Press 

Lee Brice has been nominated for "New Male Vocalist" by The Academy of Country Music. For the fifth year in a row, fans can voice their choice at VoteACM.com or GACtv.com/ACM. Voting started Monday, Jan 21, 2013 -  Curb Records Press

Randy Houser scored his first no. 1 Single with “How Country Feels” (Stoney Creek Records) as it claims the No. 1 spot on the Mediabase/Country Aircheck/USA Today and BDS/Billboard Country Airplay singles charts. The 15-track release features seven songs co-written by Houser including the poignant ballad “Power Of A Song,” which Alanna Conaway of American Songwriter says “will knock a listener off their feet,” Essential Broadcast Media Press -
Watch Houser perform “How Country Feels” (At The Grand Ole Opry) (Live) (2013) at en.musicplayon.com

This year marks both the 90th anniversary of country giant Hank Williams’ birth and the 60th year remembrance of his tragic death. Within the thirty year timeframe of his life, Williams became the cornerstone of country music and one of the key influencers of artists from all genres. Songs such as “Lovesick Blues,” “There’s a Tear In My Beer,” “Hey Good Looking,” “I’m a Long Gone Daddy” and numerous others remain timeless classics.
Fast forward to 2013 - Former adversaries Hank Williams Jr. and Jett Williams are making it easier to license live recordings by their father, the late Hank Williams, to advertisers, film houses and TV producers. The estate is now making live performances, which have been released commercially through Time-Life projects, available to other media. While Universal Music Group still administers the senior Williams’ studio recordings, the estate is able to license the live performances quicker—and at a lower cost.
Among the more than 200 concert tracks are recordings of “Move It On Over,” “I Saw the Light,” “Mind Your Own Business” and “Jambalaya (On the Bayou).”
Songs Available Through the Hank Williams Estate:
Forty-nine songs from the 1949 radio series, “Health & Happiness Shows” / 143 songs from the 1951 radio shows by “Mother’s Best Flour Company” / 9 songs from the May 4, 1952 Niagara Falls concert / 10 songs from the July 13, 1952 Sunset Park concert – For Full Details in this press release Webster & Associates Public Relations

Country Radio Seminar proudly announced songwriters The Warren Brothers (Brad and Brett) and Thomas Rhett as co-headliners of CRS 2013’s WCRS Live!  The song writer showcase, which will take place Wednesday, Feb 27, 2013.

Country Radio Seminar has announced music industry executive and Academy of Country Music CEO Bob Romeo as the recipient of the 2013 CRS President’s Award. The award will be presented during the Country Radio Hall of Fame Dinner and Awards ceremony held on Tuesday, February 27, 2013. - Arista PR Press

Craig Campbell enjoyed some serious screen time with performances on both MARIE on Hallmark Channel and Yahoo!’s Ram Country Music Performance Feature - Country Covers. Campbell currently entertaining fans in Australia, will join superstar host Marie Osmond in a taped performance of his new single “Outta My Head” and debut hit “Family Man” on Jan 29th.  The following day, Craig pays homage to one of his musical inspirations, Travis Tritt, on Ram Country. For nice photo + info see press release - Monarch Publicity     

Hunter Mountain are to Host a 3-Day inaugural Taste of Country Music Festival on June 13–15, 2013 featuring Lady Antebellum, Willie Nelson & Family, Trace Adkins, Billy Currington, Hunter Hayes, Montgomery Gentry, Joe Nichols, Gloriana, Justin Moore, Dustin Lynch, Blackberry Smoke and more. The Hunter Mountain Resort is set in the scenic Catskills Mountains.

Lee Greenwood’s "God Bless The USA" celebrated a 30th Anniversary & its enduring mark on American Culture" - Webster & Associates

ARTICLES
CMT New Radio Station Is Just One Reason for Optimism in 2013 (Jan 24, 2013; Written by Chet Flippo)  Extract: Here are some encouraging musical signs that are developing in 2013:
New York City finally gets a full-time country radio station again. After 17 years of being country-less, New York airwaves reawaken to the sounds of country as WXRP goes country…..If I may be allowed a salute to my own company, a hearty well-done to CMT for its forthcoming Next Women of Country campaign. Featured will be Ashley Monroe, Holly Williams, Jana Kramer, Kelleigh Bannen, Sarah Darling, Kacey Musgraves, Lauren Alaina, Rose Falcon, Brandy Clark and Rachel Farley. Supporting young country women is important because few people and companies do. The last such media roundup of young country women singers was Maxim magazine's "Hottest Women of Country Music" series aka "Meat on the Hoof." I trust that CMT's initiative will more seriously explore each woman's music.

LISTEN
Teea Goans is sharing a A Song A Day 'Til Valentines Day!! Visit Facebook - soundcloud.com

WATCH
When Brantley Gilbert shot the video for his new single, ‘More Than Miles,’ he smashes a picture with his fist (3 mins in). His hand got cut by the glass and soon after was in the emergency room getting stitches so the blood you see on his knuckles in the video is real -  "The mirror was their idea, and punching the picture was mine," explains Brantley. "Yeah, it was like a temper tantrum moment. Man, we thought that picture was plexiglass! It wasn’t. Brantley was in the emergency room for a couple hours after that video shoot to get stitches in his right hand.  >> YouTube

Morgan Mills  “Dance In The Rain” (2012) - en.musicplayon.com

Carrie Underwood’s latest music video, “Two Black Cadillacs,” made its broadcast and online debut on Entertainment Tonight and VEVO on Wednesday, January 23. It may be viewed FULL SCREEN on VEVO.com – Its fabulous!

COUNTRY FASHION

Taylor Swift attended the 40 Principales Music Awards at the Palacio de Deportes in Madrid, Spain on January 24, 2013, where she performed and picked up the ‘International Artist Award’.
Photos: Zimbio; Kaufmanfranco Christian Louboutin
The 23-year-old “Should’ve Said No” country/pop singer-songwriter posed on the blue carpet where she donned a short and super sassy ice linear crystal encrusted long sleeve Kaufman Franco shift dress, from the Spring 2013 collection—which featured a daring rectangle cut plunging illusion insert styled with Ofira earrings, a Lorraine Schwartz ring and Christian Louboutin ‘Dufoura’ open-toe booties (image) with a tinted PVC ankle strap and metallic python band at the toe - Fashion Pic
Taylor had blue smokey eye makeup, wavy tresses and wore a nude lip colour which she later switched to a sweet ponytail and red lips hen she performed 'Love Story' and '”We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” in a red embellished short-sleeve sweater, black shorts and sparkling brogues (Press Room Pic)
The Christian Louboutin Dufoura sandals with mixed media heels are from the Spring 2013 collection featuring a PVC cuff around the ankle, light grey stacked platform and metallic python strap across the toe. Dufoura is available online at in grey at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman & Barneys, pink/green at Net-A-Porter & in many different styles at Christian Louboutin US.

Taylor Swift pulling out all the stops on the red carpet at the 2013 NRJ Music Awards, held at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes and showed a young man [1D’s Harry Styles] exactly what he is missing.
She wore an Elie Saab’s Spring 2013 dress. (Fashion Pic  Credit: Style.com & Getty)

Taylor at the
NRJ Awards (Getty)

Her nude long-sleeve mini dress with plunging neckline and sequined embellishments was styled with gold metallic Jimmy Choo sandals, a Lorraine Schwartz ring and Ofira drop earrings. Tay added the finishing touches with soft tresses with loose waves, smoky eyes and a nude lip. 

And it was a good job she looked so on form as Taylor then had to sit through the ceremony watching Styles and his band perform, before then picking up the award for Best International Group.
It could be one of the most awkward moments in her personal life - running in to your recent ex boyfriend at a highly publicised awards show but she showed off her enviably slender legs in the plunging gold gown.

Were things tense at the NRJ Music Awards?

Swift sang 'We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together' with former “lover” (?) Harry Styles sat in the audience.
She gave a dazzling performance of the song having changed out of her arrival outfit to take to the stage in a minuscule black lace number with sexy knee high boots!

YouTube image

Taylor Swift performed “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” featuring SMAP on a Japan TV Show. She wore the Celyn Sequined Polka Dot Sweater from Alice and Olivia ($ 74.25). You can get a similar sweater for $ 24.99 at Charlotte Russe

COUNTRY GOSSIP
Faith Hill has a crave, she loves BBQ potato chips and ranch dip so much she sometimes eats an entire bag at once.

Sheryl Crow and Lance ArmstrongDid the Country Star Know About Doping? Sheryl Crow and Lance Armstrong dated from 2003 until 2006, before breaking off their engagement. However, during the relationship, Armstrong rode in the Tour de France twice - and won both times. It has since emerged that the disgraced cycling took performance enhancing drugs during both races, catapulting country singer Crow into the spotlight.
Celebuzz.com has learned that the nine-time Grammy winner was named twice in affidavits submitted to the United States Anti-Doping Association, which blew the whistle on the Tour de France winner...It's the first time that Crow, 50, has been directly implicated in Armstrong's doping conspiracy. In an interview to air on Tuesday (Jan 22, 2013), the country singer told Entertainment Tonight, "I think that honesty is always the best bet and that the truth will set you free. To carry around a weight like that would be devastating in the long run." She said she caught "bits and pieces" of Armstrong's much-hyped interview with Oprah Winfrey last week.

Since Harry Styles split with Taylor Swift in the media played out Haylor drama he has rekindled a Twitter conversation with  Emma Watson have four months after flirting on the social networking site.
Harry let Emma, 22, know that he'd watched the rest of her film The Perks Of Being while on an aeroplane
'@EmWatson I finally saw the second half! That film gets dark, but I liked it a lot,' Tweeted Harry.
Emma replied: '@Harry_Styles yay!! So happy.'…1D fans are thrilled that the pair have been chatting again and told Harry - who split from Taylor earlier this month - that he should consider hooking up with Emma.Unfortunately for Directioners, Emma is loved-up with long-term boyfriend Will Adamowicz.

On Jan 21 The Sun reported that Taylor Swift arrived in her private jet (photo) at Luton airport just north of London, and she was driven to a hotel near Harry Styles’ house. A source said, “There’s talk of a meeting with Harry being on the cards. She has no obvious reason or promo duties in London this week. Harry has just got back from a small tour in Japan with the band and now has four days off.” Taylor was due at the 40pp Awards in Madrid tomorrow (Wed Jan 23)
Taylor the "Jet-setter"

For followers of aviation (plane spotters)
1. The jet is a Dassault-Breguet Mystere Falcon 900, and it allegedly cost around $40 million to buy. Swift picked it up in 2011, when it was merely 2 years old. In 2011 alone, Swift banked more than $45 million, so this lavish jet was practically chump change to the starlet.
2. On the nose of the jet, you can see the number “13.” This is Swift’s favorite number - “I was born on the 13th. I turned 13 on Friday the 13th. My first album went gold in 13 weeks. My first number one song had a 13-second intro,” she said. “Every time I’ve won an award I’ve been seated in either the 13th seat, the 13th row, the 13th section or row M, which is the 13th letter.”
3. As you can see on the engine, the aircraft’s registration is “N898TS,” with the “TS” standing for “Taylor Swift” (naturally). It is her plane, after all!
4. The jet has 12 seats though not 13 – Interior Image and no outside loo, lucky for some!

On the 23rd Jan The Sun ran a story “We Cannes work it out” suggesting that Harry Styles and Taylor Swift's had patched up their differences in London (?) following a series of soppy phone calls and that all bets were off that they will be an item again thus making a mockery of Taylor’s hit “We’re Never Getting Back Together” . Both singers were attending the NRJ Music Awards in Cannes at the weekend and couldn’t have chosen a more romantic country to seal their reunion – France.
A source said: 'Taylor realised she was being a bit full-on. She is now more relaxed about their relationship'
'Harry is not the sort of guy you can stay mad at for long. She's given him some space and it's done them both a world of good,' the insider tells The Sun.

Contrary to the Sun’s 23 rd Jan report Taylor Swift revealed to Vibe Magazine she isn't looking for a new boyfriend because she wants to be independent for a while following her split from Harry Styles. Taylor Swift wants some time alone following her split from Harry Styles.
The 'We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together' singer recently called time on her brief relationship with the 1D singer and is now planning to stay single for a while as wants to be independent. She told Vibe magazine: ''Independence is something I've always needed, from when I was young. But I love the idea of romance and falling in love. I've never really had a long relationship. So that's something I think about for the future. It's an interesting part of my personality: Part of me just wants to be alone .... Sagittarians are really independent, and we like our space. We're drawn to love but battle for that need for independence.''
Taylor, 23, reportedly broke up with Harry, 18, because she felt she couldn't trust him. A source said: ''Taylor's trust issues contributed towards their argument. She says she couldn't cope with all the attention Harry gets from fans, and the fact he is a massive flirt with girls”.

While everyone speculates every possible outcome about the Haylor breakup and whether they are or aren’t getting back together (ever), the latest churning from the rumour mill is that the One Direction singer is terrified of T Swizzle and refused to see her when she came to London this week. A source told RadarOnline.
Taylor was desperate to meet up with Harry in London, but he totally ignored her. He told her he had too much going on, even though she purposely arranged to stay at a hotel that wasn’t too far away from his home. “Harry found Taylor a little too full-on and scary, and he was put off by how serious she was about him after such a short period of time. Then she had this crazy meltdown, accusing him of cheating, when he didn’t. It freaked him out to say the least and he’s kind of thinking she’s more drama than she’s worth”.

Miley Cyrus, the 20-year-old star posed braless on the cover of Cosmopolitan's March 2013 issue and talks about her newfound confidence, as well as her hunky fiance Liam Hemsworth.
Donning a white suit and not much else, Cyrus shows off her body as she admits her fear of entering back into the music world. When asked to rank the parts of her life that she feels most satisfied with -- love, family, music, acting -- the former "Hannah Montana" actress puts love at the top spot.
"Number one is my relationship with Liam. That's what I feel the most confident in," she gushes to Cosmopolitan adding, "because you never know; there's so much hype behind my new record, but it could come out and, worst-case scenario, everyone f**king hates it."
Miley’s Cover Shoot vid - http://bcove.me/9t77jj7e
Related: Watch the Cosmopolitan Cover Shoot for Julianne Hough - http://bcove.me/sl8iq1xl

Carrie Underwood recently discussed her starring role as Maria in the upcoming live broadcast of NBC's The Sound Of Music and since there aren't any other actors attached yet.
Will NBC will let Carrie’s mom Carol be involved? "My mom and I would always watch The Sound Of Music together every time it was on TV so it holds really special memories for me," Underwood says. "She wants to be a nun. So she's like, 'I want to be a nun. I don't have to say anything. I can be in there.'" Hopefully the credits will read Carol Underwood as Quiet Mother Nun.

TWEETS
Joe Nichols (@JoeNichols): “Wife is funny.. Her: ‘speeding tickets aren’t a sign of bad driving . . .’ Me: ‘(blank stare).. that’s precisely what they are”.

PHOTO
Hairy Styles: Taylor Swift the SIX-TIME Grammy winner let her hair down and was transformed into Disney princess Rapunzel for a new Enchanted advertising campaign. The singing beauty poses as the long-haired damsel in distress for the latest Disney Parks commercials, which are shot annually by famed photographer Annie Leibovitz.
The Disney Dream Portrait series commissioned by Disney Parks for their ongoing celebrity advertising campaign debuted in 2007. It will also include Olivia Wilde as the Evil Queen, Rachel Weisz as Snow White, Tina Fey as Tinkerbell, Jessica Biel as Pocahontas, Beyonce as Alice in Wonderland and Scarlett Johnasson as Cinderella. The ads will be seen in upcoming issues of People, Vanity Fair and InStyle magazines
The stunning image, captioned "Where a world of adventure awaits", shows the 23-year-old Grammy winner perched on the window ledge of a moss-covered stone tower. A pink petticoat peeks out from under her purple gown as she stares wistfully into the distance, her long golden tresses flowing regally in the wind. The story goes that Rapunzel is imprisoned in a tower by an evil witch, until she meets a prince (or, in the Disney adaptation Tangled, a thief named Flynn) who helps her escape
Read more: www.usmagazine.com
See Photo Gallery - www.dailyrecord.co.uk

R.I.P
Tony Douglas, Texas Country Music Entertainer and Louisiana Hayride Star passed away on Tuesday, January 22, in Athens, Texas.  He was 83.
"Tony was suffering from lymphoma and had been hospitalized for nearly two weeks," said family spokesman Tracy Pitcox. "He passed away peacefully just before midnight.  He had been constantly surrounded by his family and friends."

Douglas was born near Athens, and began performing as a weekly guest on Forth Worth’s Cowtown Hoedown in 1956. He made his first record “Ole Blue Monday” that same year. While performing on the show, Johnny Horton’s manager Tillman Franks asked Douglas to be a guest on the popular Louisianna Hayride in Shreveport.
Douglas then signed a three-year contract to become a Hayride regular. In 1958, the manager of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville caught Douglas performing and offered him a contract. Douglas was ready to sign when he realized that signing with the Opry meant an automatic move from Texas to Tennessee.
He gave up the invitation to join the prestigious show and remain in Texas. In 1961, Douglas struck gold with the song “Shrimpin,” and developed a name for his band. The hits would continue to follow including “My Last Day,” “Layin In The Sunshine,” “Don’t Piddle Around A Puddle” and “Worst of Luck.” 

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