Sunday, 31 March 2013

Country Bites News snippets March 4 - March 10, 2013

Country Bites News snippets March 4 – March 10, 2013

SOURCES/LINKS show in RED

UK & IRISH News

Killarney was the place to be for the annual St Patrick's Weekend Dancing Festival.Held at the Gleneagle Hotel and firmly established as one of Ireland's premiere country music events, it drew people from all corners of Ireland, as well as the UK. The best of Irish Country Music was featured from March 15-17 each night and during the afternoon on Saturday and Sunday. This exciting country music weekend kicked off on Friday with the hugely popular Mike Denver and his band, plus support from Patrick O'Sullivan.
The Saturday line-up featured the legendary Gina, Dale Hayes and The Champions, plus the ever-popular TR Dallas. St Patrick's Night sees another of Irish country music's biggest attractions, Jimmy Buckley, taking to the stage with his top-class band. Trudi Lalor and the Seabreeze Band were the support band on the night. More information - www.countrymusicholidays.com

Daniel O’Donnell has really got into the ‘swing’ of things after taking his longest break from the music business for more than 30 years. The Kincasslagh singer has been on the golf course for weeks on end in both Tenerife and Florida.

And the star, 51, has even managed to infect wife Majella with the golfing bug.
Yes he wants to play "a round" with her! - “We are managing to get in quite a few games of golf” Daniel reckons that if I stick with it and play more often, I could be quite good at it. “I don’t know about that,” laughed wife Majella.
The couple are spending the next six weeks at their Tenerife hideaway.This is the most time that Daniel has taken off in the thirty years that he has been singing.


Sandy Kelly is Patsy Cline: 50th Anniversary Tour - It is some 50 years since Patsy left a great legacy of hit records. This show pays tribute to country music’s world renowned superstar.
It features the stars of the west end production ‘Patsy’, “Ireland’s Queen of Country Music” Sandy Kelly and George Hamilton IV. An evening of song, laughter and legendary stories is promised when you come along to this enthralling tribute to the music, life and times of Patsy Cline.
At the The Princess Theatre Hunstanton show in the Norfolk seaside resort the Sarah Jory Band are cited to make an appearance on Friday 29 March 2013 (Tickets £20 (incl booking fee) 01485 532252)
See all the March and April UK dates - www.chimesinternational.com

A new name to me is Lily James. Her song "Remember Me" was aired on CMR Nashville. According to her Myspace it dates back to 31 Oct 2010 and was released as an acoustic/country/pop 3-track EP “SOMETHING TO LIVE FOR in March 2011 on UK iTunes on MKVibe Records. Her musical influences include Elvis, Carlene Carter, 50’s Rock n Roll, Johnny Cash, Celine Dion, Katherine Jenkins.
Lily is a talented actress who studied in London. Her repertoire includes feature films, tv, theatre, music videos and commercials and recently she has taken principal roles in two independent films. Lily has been featured in the Harry Potter Chamber of Secrets Film where she played a wizard and she also played a casino girl in the comedy Catherine Tate Show, Lily's versatility has enabled her to work on several UK TV Productions including one off dramas, sitcoms, soaps (inc. East Enders and the Bill), talk shows and comedy shows. Lily hs recorded several songs and performed throughout UK Venues. Website www.lilyjamesactor.com

UK band and Nashville based Emma King & The Heartsets, now a trio, comprising of Emma King (Vocals), Ritch Spence ( Piano & Guitars) and Ian Harrison (Lead Guitar) shared a link. Their official music video for "So Alive" directed by Christopher Forbes was released 4 March:
Emma King & The Heartsets
Hi Guys! Our brand new video is finally here! Crank it up! XD Cheers for listening and sharing! @EKHmusic
  >> YouTube
Additional musicians include on drum and bass Keith Carlock & David Santos (Elton John, Sting etc). Making honest music and a natural transition they have been working with Milan Bogdan (Shania Twain, Dolly, etc) and Chas Sandford (Stevie Nicks, Eagles, John Waite, The Who) on their latest project.

Sarah McQuaid has Irish & UK Tour dates from April to September 2013. Scroll down on this page www.pattynanmedia.com for details.
Her musical output is a direct and unfolding reflection of her own eclectic background: Sarah was born in Spain, raised in Chicago, holds dual US and Irish citizenship, and currently lives in rural England. She moved to Ireland in 1994 and lived there for 13 years, working as a music journalist and active member of Dublin’s arts community.

Fans supporting artists: After performing with Kristian Bush and Bob DiPiero Wigan based Gary Quinn wants to “strike whilst the iron is hot” and is asking fans to dig deep into their (empty?) pockets to pledge their support to fund his Debut Album. Signed goodies and VIP experiences are traded in exchange for a pledge - www.pledgemusic.com.

Tickets are now available for Maria Jordan at UKCountryRadio.com's next Live Music Night at Ambience Cafe, York on Sat 16th March. Get tickets now from 01904 652500

In honor of the St. Patrick's Day season, Folk Alley assembled over 10 hours of on-demand music with a mix of familiar and new artists, including Mary Black, Solas, Danu, John Doyle, Donal Lunny, Connie Dover, Andy Irvine, Planxty, Grada, The Chieftains (of course)... and much, much more! Sláinte mhaith! - www.folkalley.com

The Country Music Newsround, most usually referred to as 'The Newsround', has been serving the country music community of East Anglia (Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk) for more than a decade.  With its main focus being 'What's On' in the way of British and Irish Country Music, along with news and reviews, The Newsround has evolved into the 'must have' country music magazine for its target area and beyond - www.thenewsround.co.uk

Southern Country Magazine, the West Sussex/Hampshire based publication, has announced that it will cease to exist after March 2014:
From their website PDF Announcement : Southern Country Magazine has always been classed as a non-profit making organisation, thus we have no financial back-up resources to rely on in hard times, so after nearly 35 years of publications and giving our loyal readers the best we can, it is with great regret that due to rising costs and a fall in sales and advertising over the past few years that we sadly have to announce that “Southern Country Magazine Ltd” will cease publication after the March 2014 issue.We shall, of course continue supplying magazines to the clubs and accepting club reports, gig dates and advertising up to and including the March 2014 issue.

The latest March/April Maverick Magazine is out and stocked in W.H.Smith stores, it contains:
a) 120 CD Reviews b) A Little Big Town feature on the eve of their first UK appearance at the C2C festival c) Downton Abbey's Elizabeth McGovern in her alter ego of Sadie & the Hotheads d) Glamour comes from Tift Merritt and Carrie Rodriguez e) A Patti Page Obituary f) CMA Songwriter Chris Young has a 2 page feature g) C2C performers Carrie Underwood Branytley Gilbert are spotlighted h) A Charlie Pride 3 page feature
i) Joey+Rory "A Beautiful Marriage" 2 page
j) Victoria Shaw Nashville Songwriter 2 page spread and
k) Red Allen (Roots of Country / 3 pages)
You can browse it online: Select Options (top Left) for Auto Presentation or to choose Single Page mode, Select Contents to show the page thumbnails
"<" and ">" to page forward or back and you can adjust the text size with the -/+ zoom tool on the upper right toolbar
Yudu.com/Maverick/MarApril2013/ LINK
UK CHART NEWS
On the Official UK Singles Top 100 Chart (Week March 16, 2013)
Taylor Swift’sI Knew You Were Trouble” (Mercury) dropped 6-10. Her new UK single “22” bullets 147-66 (4,012 sales), in its 3rd week. Tay’s new entry marks the 7th Top 75 song from latest album RED jumping 147-66. Despite its high profile, however, it would appear that RED had little appeal as a Mother's Day gift, more so for their daughters, falling 7-13-21 in the last fortnight, with sales halving over that period to just 7,387 in the latest frame. Swift’s  We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” was down 16 slots 53-69 in its 29th chart week.
Of Note, Spotty Taylor: Despite Big Machine not allowing Taylor’s latest album to appear on the Spotify streaming service, here in the UK Taylor was named the UK's most popular female artist on Spotify! Rihanna placed second in the UK, with Florence + the Machine third and Emeli Sande fourth. American act The Lumineers “Ho Hey” is the third was popular song with its women users over the last 6 months of their data. www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat

On the Official UK Albums Top 100 (Week March 16, 2013)
Taylor Swift’s RED was down 13- 21
New at No.42 is OLD YELLOW MOON (Nonesuch) from Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell. Veterans Emmylou (65) and Rodney (62) spoke of recording an album together for more than 30 years and finally did so in 2012. Released on Monday March 4th, the resulting set Old Yellow Moon due sales of 4,077 sales. Crowell is the bigger star in America - but it is the “Country/Americana Queen” Harris' 13th chart album here and Crowell's first.
Re-entering the Top 100 moving 141-98 is Lady Antebellum’s NEED YO NOW (Capitol)   

Official UK Country Album Chart (Week March 9, 2013)
Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell debut at No.1 with OLD YELLOW MOON (Nonesuch) with 4,077 copies sold.
Tim McGraw & Friends (Curb) makes its bow at No.3. Also new at No.6 is Luke Bryan with SPRING BREAK - HERE TO PARTY.    

On the Hotdisc Chart (March 10, 2013 Chart) 
Ray Scott's "Those Jeans" debuts at No.1 on the Hotdisc Top 40 chart, as tracks from the March 2013 Hotdisc #171 begin to impact on the standings. The self penned novelty comedy song (Track #9 on HD171) is drawn for his CD RAYALITY (see video).
Rusty Rierson dropped 1-2 with “Souvenirs" and Toby Keith dropped 1 place to No.3 with “Hope On The Rocks”.
Bart Connell (pronounced Cun-ail) with "The Grass Ain't All That's Blue" (written by Johnny Morris,Tommy Roco, Tim Gaetano and Roger La Voie) debuts at No.4 as Frank Ifield, who is celebrating over 50 years in the business with a song called "Roses From A Stranger" enters the chart at No.5 with a rare song from long ago given a re-release by EMI from his CD set, aptly titled RARITIES.
George Inglis’ moved 3-6 with “The Old Time Rock n' Roll” on the Top 40 but remained No.1 on the British & Irish Top 10 for a fourth week with Ring O'Bells Band making their debut at No.4 on the Brit chart with “Why Do I Drink Whiskey”

UK COUNTRY ALBUM RELEASES
(12 Mar 2013) Shooter Jennings - Other Life [Import] 11 tracks Time: 47:38

AUSSIE NEWS
Highly Acclaimed North Queensland Folk /Alt Country sibling duo The McMenamins announced the release of their “stunning” 4th studio album 'Sand and Stone'. After their three previous releases saw them gain critical acclaim, much airplay and a string of song writing awards, the siblings have toured extensively both in Australia and in the US. The new album contains 11 new tracks and The McMenamins will be supporting the release with a national tour including two performances at the Byron Bay Bluesfest.
Blurb: The McMenamins create a unique brand of Folk / Alt Country with their honeyed vocal harmonies, infectious lyrics and intricate instrumental soundscapes. This combined with their more high-energy material bordering on folk rock along with their uplifting country tunes, makes up the broad range of subject matter and styles their music covers. Both taught classically from a young age the duo’s sound has been described as “a delightful brand of Country Folk” & "Beautiful Acoustica" - Product Details
The album is built around expressions of our experiences over the past three years,” says one half, Fleur. “That includes stories about our families, our travels, what we’ve seen and what we think about the world and the human condition. The songs are heart-felt expressions of how we feel. I guess we are lucky to be able to express ourselves through music.”
SAND AND STONE was recorded at Applewood Lane Studios, an old converted chapel near Brisbane (owned by Multi ARIA Award winning Producer Magoo). The Album was engineered and mixed by Benjamin McCarthy, who Co-produced with Fleur. All songs were written by Fleur and Simon, who were joined by Benjamin McCarthy – again – on piano, electric bass and percussion; and Steve Pope, on drums. The songs extend across European and North American roots forms, while still retaining an over-arching harmony. There are echoes of Americana here, of southern states spirituals, of Irish folk and, underpinning it all, a sensibility that grows from a very Australian understanding of time and place.
Watch a live TV performance of their song "Wayside" >> YouTube

Country songwriter Allan Caswell has released an album inspired by jail, drinking and the bush.His best-known song is “On The Inside”, the theme from the television series Prisoner. It was a No. 1 record in Australia and New Zealand. It reached No. 3 in the UK and also featured on the Billboard Country charts in the USA. Allan has been awarded with 6 Golden Guitars at the Country Music Awards of Australia.

The Central Coast Festival took place Friday 8th March - Sunday 10th March 2013 in NSW were crowds in the order of 40,000 plus were expected over the event's three days. The weekend’s line up includes Camille & Stuie, Jetty Road, McAlister Kemp, Craig Morrison, The Pigs, Melinda Schneider, Simply Bushed, the Wolverines and 2013 Toyota Star maker winner Kaylee Bell

NEWS
Jason Aldean celebrated his 36th birthday in style on Thursday night (Feb 28), playing a sold-out  ‘Night Train’ show at Mohegan Sun Arena with a cowboythemed cake. After the show he headed to  the top floor of Mohegan’s Vista Lounge, where he was spotted drinking Patron Silver and Coors Light while partying with openers Jake Owen and Thomas Rhett. Aldean also hit the black jack tables to try his luck before heading back to the hotel
I Never Promised You A Pose, Garden: Jason played his first-ever Madison Square Garden show on Sat. March 3, when his 2013 NIGHT TRAIN tour rolled into New York City for another of its many sold out stops.  Billboard claimed Aldean "conquered NYC" on what was just the second weekend of the tour. Aldean brought “country” to the Big Apple with an electric performance that created a palpable energy in the packed room - See Photos

Blaked On A True Story: It'd sure be cool if we knew what Blake Shelton was thinking. "It's romantic. It's mischevious a little bit. It's got a cool groove to it. It's happy. It's in a bar. It's just a guy picking up a girl, you know." That's how Blake describes his new single, "Sure Be Cool If You Did."  "It's easy to listen to and not have to think about that hard." Blake feels the track is reflective of the musical direction he's headed with his new album Based On A True Story – “The production of that song is what I was most excited about. It's got a loop in it. And it's got some snaps, some samples and different sounds like that, that people I don't think would've ever expected to hear from me. I turn on the radio and hear these records that Luke's doing and Carrie and Jason and I'm going, 'Gawd, I want in on some of that.' That just sounds so good. So I wanted to incorporate some of those things they're doing on my record, too. I'm jealous." Blake's Based On A True Story comes out March 26. Pre-order packages $14.99 + at www.blakeshelton.com

Tim McGraw claimed his 33rd No. one single this week with "One Of Those Nights" claiming the top spot on the Billboard Country Airplay chart. The single, from his No. one selling album TWO LANES OF FREEDOM (Big Machine Records), follows a multitude of chart-topping hits ranging from "Don't Take The Girl" and "I Like It, I Love It" to "Where The Green Grass Grows," "The Cowboy In Me" and "Live Like You Were Dying."
"It feels great to have the No. one song…it's always a really special feeling," said McGraw. "Country radio has never let me down, and I'm so thankful for those relationships. It's going to be a great song for the tour this summer…it sets the perfect tone for an awesome night!"

Sarah Darling continues to become a household name as her partnership with MoonPie expands to include 2,500 Walmart supercenters coast to coast and is available chain-wide in Save-A-Lot stores.
The newly available Banana Single Decker 6 ct box featuring Sarah introduces consumers to the instant win game offering daily and monthly winners in addition to the Grand Prize.
Sarah performed latest single "Home To Me" on CONAN TV show on TBS (March 4)
 >> YouTube

2013 CMA Music Festival Lineup: Artists performing at LP Field include Gary Allan, Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, Kelly Clarkson, Florida Georgia Line, Hunter Hayes, Miranda Lambert, Jake Owen, Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, Taylor Swift, The Band Perry, Keith Urban, and Zac Brown Band. The star-packed lineup is bursting at the seams with reigning trophy winners, former Award recipients, and nominees all performing for the most ardent, passionate fans in the world during CMA Music Festival, Thursday through Sunday, June 6-9, in Nashville. Full details at www.cmaworld.com

The trio Edens Edge is now a duo. The band posted a note on its website announcing that its Feb. 22 Grand Ole Opry performance was the last with Hannah Blaylock, referred to as a “founding member” in the statement. Remaining members Dean Berner and Cherrill Green are currently recording a new album, though they will likely be shopping for a new label. The band said it was “forever grateful for the time spent inside the Big Machine family.” Edens Edge was listed as a member of the label’s roster in a press release as recently as Feb. 5. Its first single, “Amen,” peaked at No. 18.
Hannah Blaylock was quiet in the days following the announcement that she was leaving the group, leaving many fans to wonder what her reasons were for leaving and what the future holds for the singer. Hannah broke her silence when she took to Twitter to update fans: “Hey y’all. Dreams and visions change and that’s life and that’s ok. And even though change is hard sometimes, it’s what can promote the best kind of growth,” Blaylock wrote. “I am here to say, I have stepped down as a member of Edens Edge. I don’t know the future – but I do know singing is my life and country music is my soul and its fans are the best fans there is. I’m the luckiest girl in the world & so privileged to know & have met all of you. You have brought a love & a light into my life that I never knew before I am so thankful and so grateful for all the blessings and opportunities I have been given. I
can’t say that enough.” She also took time to wish her former bandmates the best of luck. “I wish Dean and Cherrill the most success, happiness, & fulfillment in the world. The times we have shared together I hold dear to my heart. Let’s keep on chasing our dreams and loving people along the way. Hope to see you on the road.”

The Americana Music Association Announces Official SXSW Showcase for Thursday, March 14 At Antone’s Nightclub, 213 W 5th St Austin, TX featuring esteemed musicians Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell, Richard Thompson, The Mavericks, Buddy Miller & Jim Lauderdale,Josh Ritter and James Hunter. Poster JPEG
Dolly Parton and Willie Nelson will make guest appearances on a new Paul Anka album, DUETS, scheduled for an April 9 release through Legacy. Nelson joins Anka on “Crazy,” the Patsy Cline classic that Nelson wrote. Parton collaborates on “Do I Love You (Yes, in Every Way),” an Anka-penned title that Donna Fargo took to No. 2 on Hot Country Songs in 1978.

Dawn Sears, stellar vocalist and member of Rounder Record’s 4-time Grammy-nominated band The Time Jumpers, has been diagnosed with Stage 3B lung cancer. Sears is also a long-time member of Vince Gill’s touring band.  She is currently undergoing treatment in Nashville, TN and plans to continue performing at the band’s regular Monday night show at 3rd & Lindsley until her treatment dictates otherwise. Sears’ husband and band mate Kenny Sears has asked for the family’s privacy to be considered as they move through this very difficult period

Gregg Lohman, drummer for Kellie Pickler. Gregg was seriously injured in a car accident on Interstate 65 in central Kentucky on Saturday. Kellie has asked fans to pray for Gregg.
Yesterday, my drummer Gregg Lohman was in a horrific car accident and is currently in ICU,” she posted on Facebook - “Gregg is not just my drummer, he is family. I believe in miracles and the power of prayer, so it would mean the world to me, my band, and Gregg’s family if you would please keep him in your prayers. Thank y’all so much.”
Kentucky State Police Master Trooper Norm Chaffins told WHAS 11 that Gregg suffered head and neck injuries after a four-vehicle wreck in the southbound lanes. The accident happened about 15 minutes after a fiery crash involving a tractor-trailer and an SUV on the northbound side of the highway. Six people from rural Wisconsin were killed in the crash on the northbound side. Five more people were hospitalized from both crashes.

Florida Georgia Line remixed their #1 hit ‘Cruise’ for pop radio with R& B star Nelly and you can hear a bit of it on Nelly’s song, ‘Hey Porsche.’

Awards
CMA staffers surprised NHK World Country Programs producer and personality Takehisa Matsuda with the CMA International Country Broadcaster Award during a visit to the CMA offices on Tuesday, March 5. The award recognizes outstanding achievement by radio broadcasters outside the United States who have made important contributions for the development of Country Music in their country.
Usually up to three recipients may be named in any year, but no more than two from one country in one year. The UK’s Lee Williams, CEO and owner of CMR Nashville was also the receipient of the same prestigious Broadcaster award by the CMA at the CMA International Marketing Summit on Friday 1 March at Disneyland, Paris.

Vince Gill will be honored by the T.J. Martell Foundation. His wife Amy Grant was due to present Gill with the Frances Williams Preston Lifetime Music Achievement Award, an honor named after BMI pioneer Frances Williams Preston.
GILL was honored by two surprise performers. The event took take place on Sunday, March 10th Nashville at the Hutton Hotel. Preston was the first recipient of this prestigious award in 2009, and it was later awarded to Michael Bolton (2011) and Kris Kristofferson (2012) in her name, according to BMI.com.
Gill, a friend of Preston’s, said, “I couldn’t ask for anyone better to take my interest to heart and look after me. At the end of the day, I knew she was going to represent me and my fellow songwriters by doing a first-class job. She seemed to love the people and the songs more than the work she was doing.”
The Nashville Honors Gala also put the spotlight on famed producer and composer T Bone Burnett, Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau President Butch Spyridon and Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center volunteer Peggy Joyce. ABC “Nashville” stars Charles Esten (“Deacon”) and Clare Bowen (“Scarlett”), hosted the invitation-only evening.

The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) congratulated its members (March 7) who have landed on Billboard’s Top 10 Songwriters Airplay Chart for the fourth quarter of 2012. The industry magazine released the list in their latest issue and, for the second quarter in a row, ASCAP writer members and international affiliates have triumphantly claimed eight of the ten spots. Taking the top honor is prolific songwriter-producer Max Martin (STIM), who had songwriting credits on two Billboard Hot 100 #1s in this time period – Maroon 5’s “One More Night” and Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” Other recent hits from the Swedish music creator include Justin Bieber’s “Beauty and a Beat,” Katy Perry’s
“Wide Awake” and Ke$ha’s “Warrior” and “C’Mon.” Details at www.ascap.com

Stateside Show & Festival News
Honeynut Perry-O's: The Band Perry, Brantley Gilbert, Justin Moore, Greg Bates, Cassadee Pope and Florida Georgia Line are set to perform at Outnumber Hunger Live! April 5 at The Orleans Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The show is part of The ACM Experience leading up to the 48th ACM Awards. All the artists record for the Big Machine Label Group, which has partnered with General Mills and Feeding America for the event and will feature the performers on boxes of Wheaties, Cheerios and other products.

Alan Jackson, Travis Tritt, Pam Tillis, Kathy Mattea, Tracy Lawrence, Patty Loveless, Joe Diffie, Mark Chesnutt and T. Graham Brown are the latest performers added to a star-studded lineup for the final Nashville concert from George Jones Nov. 22 at Bridgestone Arena.

The Academy of Country Music announced that Luke Bryan, Kelly Clarkson, Hunter Hayes, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, George Strait and The Band Perry are scheduled to perform as part of the 48th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards.  This is the first round of artists announced as performers on this year’s broadcast. The ceremony will be broadcast LIVE in America from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 8 p.m.

On Saturday, June 1, CMA and Grammy award winners Little Big Town and CMA award winner and Grammy nominee Hunter Hayes will headline the star-studded Blue Ridge Music Festival at Salem Stadium in Salem, Va. Charles Esten, Deacon Claybourne on ABC’s hit show “Nashville,” Gloriana, Colt Ford, Greg Bates, Will Hoge and Virginia’s own legendary party band, The Skip Castro Band, round out the lineup of this day-long event - Webster & Associates Press

When Keith Urban kicks off his 2013 North American Tour this summer on July 18 in Cincinnati, Ohio. He’ll be hitting the road with old pals Little Big Town and newcomer Dustin Lynch. While this will be Dustin’s first outing with Keith, Little Big Town has toured with him before as well as collaborated on a few different projects.“I’ve always loved them,” Keith said of Little Big Town. “I love the record they made, and I just felt like if they wanted to come out, it’d be a great time to collaborate together. I feel it’s more collaborative when anybody comes out with us. All of us are putting on a show for the audience, ‘cause it starts the minute they walk into the arena.”

George Strait 's The Cowboy Rides Away Tour became the quickest sell-out at San Antonio’s Alamodome, as tickets for his June 1 appearance disappeared in six minutes. Strait will play to 72,000, the venue's largest-ever crowd - EB Media 

JVC Broadcasting Country WJVC/LONG ISLAND presented its "GIRLS WITH GUITARS" concert (March 7), despite a major WINTER storm bearing down on the ISLAND.
WJVC PHATHEAD said, "We basically took advantage of a window between 9a-2p, before the storm picked up again. We were tracking their planes coming into Islip Airport like kids track Santa Christmas Eve. Everyone got in and the only glitch was that the airline lost Lauren Alaina’s luggage. Luckily LONG ISLAND is huge on malls, so we just took her shopping for new clothes!"
Playing the sold-out show to 1,200 fans were, Alaina, Jana Kramer, Kristen Kelly, Katie Armiger, Maggie Rose and Sarah Darling. A portion of the proceeds went to the American Cancer Society



TV
Luke Bryan performed "Buzzkill/Drunk on You" on Ellen (March 5) to celebrate his new CD, "Spring Break… Here to Party."
Watch it here - www.ellentv.com
On Weds, MARCH 6th, he was to appear on ABC-TV's "Jimmy Kimmel Live" and also make his TBS network "CONAN" debut on Thursday, March 14th.

BABY NEWS
Jessica Simpson the "Come on Over" country/pop singer and "Daisy Duke" actress is in fact expecting a baby boy, she confirmed — accidentally! The singer and actress, 32, let the news slip on Jimmy Kimmel Live (Weds March 6). that daughter Maxwell Drew, 10 months, is getting a little brother — then spent the rest of her appearance in shock that she’d done so.
“I just feel awful, I’ve been vomiting,” she tells Kimmel of her current pregnancy. “The crazy thing is, I never knew that a wiener could actually make me nauseous.” After a gasp, Simpson adds: “Well, I guess I just told the world that I’m having a boy!”

A BIG congratulations to Felicity Urquhart and Glen Hannah on the birth of their second girl - Ellie Grace. Mother and daughter doing well! Felicity won Female Artist Of The Year at the 38th CMAA Country Music Awards of Australia

Love and Theft’s Eric Gunderson and his wife, Emily, welcomed their first child on March 10 in Nashville. Their son was born a bit prematurely, but is apparently doing fine. Gunderson’s record label, Sony Music Nashville, issued the following statement: “Eric and his wife Emily are thrilled to announce the birth of their handsome new addition, Camden William Gunderson. He arrived earlier than his expected May due date and will be spending some time in the hospital, but mother, father and baby are all doing well. Eric and Emily are moved by the tremendous outpouring of warm wishes from their fans, family, and country radio, and look forward to sharing more updates soon.”
The family will have some time together before Love and Theft—which also includes Stephen Barker Liles—joins Tim McGraw on his Two Lanes of Freedom Tour in May.
The duo is nominated for vocal duo of the year at the April 7 Academy of Country Music Awards. They also earned a nomination for new vocal duo or group of the year, a category in which Florida Georgia Line has already been announced as the winner.

SINGLE / ALBUM NEWS
Following two consecutive trips to the top of the charts, MCA recording artist Kip Moore’s new single, “Hey Pretty Girl,” is his fastest rising single to date with already 100 stations playing the record in just four weeks. 
“Somethin’ ‘Bout A Truck” and “Beer Money” from his debut album UP ALL NIGHT both hit No. one last year.  “Hey Pretty Girl” shows a more sensitive side to Moore, which is proving to have a strong connection with fans as the digital sales for the track continue to double in increases each week. (see Press Release)

Dailey and Vincent will be releasing a new Rounder Records album called Brothers of the Highway on May 7.

Kacey Musgraves will release her debut album, SAME TRAILER, DIFFERENT PARK, on March 19. Produced by Kacey, Shane McAnally and Luke Laird, the album includes her Top 10 debut single, “Merry Go ‘Round,” and according to Kacey, is a reflection of her life up until this point.
The songs all came from different aspects of my life over the years,” she said. “You have your whole life to make your first record, so it really comes from inspiration from everywhere – relationships I was in and whatever.”
Kacey has been performing songs from the new album as a special guest on Little Big Town’s Tornado Tour and will hit the road with Kenny Chesney on his No Shoes Nation Tour in March

Kenny Chesney recently revealed the album cover art for his highly anticipated new album, LIFE ON A ROCK. The album, which will feature his current hit single, “Pirate Flag,” hits stores April 30.
The singer shared the artwork, along with a personal note to ‘No Shoes Nation,’ with his Facebook fans: Hey, Guys…
By now you know, we’re coming…for another summer, another round of remembering what music means, being together and making memories…
Flagging up Kenny’s news: The hype continues for Kenny Chesney's "surging anthem of rebellion" (?) and fans of the No Shoes Nation have responded by buying up not one, not two, but three runs of Chesney’s 2013 flag! “I love that people are buying these flags and flying them in their dorm rooms, at their cubicle at work, on their cars, as curtains…,” Chesney says with a laugh. “People are posting pictures on Facebook, and sending us Tweets. We’ve even had a couple girls in bikinis, holding the flag up and winking.” - Sony Press
The 4-time Academy of Country Music and 4 time Country Music Association Entertainer of the Year also recently played a Keg In The Keys gig yat the Ho's Breath Saloon for a stripped down, 3 hour show at the iconic Key West. FL watering hole on Front Street - Sony Press

Collin Raye has stated many times over his long and successful career that he considers Glen Campbell one of the biggest inspirations and influences. It makes sense then that he made the announcement over Facebook (and the Grand Ole Opry stage) that he is putting the finishing touches on his Glen Campbell tribute album that he hopes to release later this year:
"Almost done with a new project that I sure think a lot of folks will like. As many of ya know, I hold my long-time friend Glen Campbell in very high regard. I'm almost finished recording a tribute album of his songs, but I've just got a couple of little things that need to get done before we can release it." Ricky Skaggs will appear as a guest star.

The Band Perry, on the heels of a multi-week #1 hit, is again celebrating the success of “Better Dig Two,” which has been certified PLATINUM from the RIAA for sales exceeding one million copies. The smash lead single has been the fastest-rising of their career and will be featured on sibling trio’s impending album, PIONEER (4/2), produced by Dann Huff, on Republic Nashville. A autographed Deluxe version of the album will be available exclusively at Target stores in America (Release Date: April 2, 2013) The 4 additional songs: 13. Gonna Be Ok (Target Exclusive) , 14. Once Upon A Time (Target Exclusive)
15. Lucky Ones (Target Exclusive) and 16. Peaches and Caroline (Target Exclusive)
See the track listing - www.thebandperry.com

Gretchen Wilson’s first new album in three years, RIGHT ON TIME, is now available for pre-order at iTunes and Amazon for the special price of $7.99. An additional track was added to the original 12-cut cd, and the incredible deal is available until the album hits stores on April 2, 2013. The debut single, “Still Rollin’,” from the new album is receiving strong support from radio and great feedback from fans. Written by Gretchen and longtime collaborator Vicky McGehee, Gretchen was at the production helm for virtually every cut of the 13 tracks. Song “Get Outta My Yard” is a Kacey Musgraves song - US iTunes - UK iTunes £5.99 / Preview the songs at www.amazon.com

Trace Adkins will be releasing his second CD for Show Dog/Universal called LOVE WILL sometime in the spring.

Jessica Campbell who hails from Catawba, NC now a Nashville-based singer-songwriter is set to release her second album, The Anchor & The Sail, on April 30, 2013. She asked fans to support the project - www.pledgemusic.com
Watch a video her song “I Stay You Stay” >> YouTube

Tate Stevens FOX’s The X Factor Season 2 winner and Syco Music/RCA Nashville recording artist has revealed the cover and track listing for his self-titled debut album set to be released on Tuesday, April 23.
"Since winning The X Factor, we've listened to hundreds of songs and set a ton of writing appointments with some of Nashville’s best songwriters,” says Stevens. "The outcome is a collection of eleven songs I'm really proud of, and I can't wait to get this record out there!" Produced by Blake Chancey, the 11-track collection includes 3 songs co-written by Tate.
Full track listing at Sony Press

Luke Bryan is working on a new record he tells music-mix.ew.com Looking past Spring Break, you’re working on a new album?
You can expect the new single to be out April 1, and then mid-summer for an album release. A lot of times on my first three albums, we were so busy and had short time windows to get vocals done. This album, we had a month and a half or two months to get everything like we wanted to, so if my voice wasn’t feeling good one day, then we’d come in and sing a day later

Patty Griffin following up on 2007’s Children Running Through announced the release of an album of original material titled AMERICAN KID on May 7 through New West Records. Griffin said the album was written to honor her father, whose storied life included working as a high school science teacher, fighting in World War II, raising seven children and living in a Trappist Monastery. A press release also notes that it’s the first album of Griffin’s that’s completely rooted in the Americana sound. “It was recorded in Memphis,” Griffin said. Read more at www.pastemagazine.com

PRESS RELEASES
RFD television network, “Larry’s Country Diner” reaches 1.4 million people each and every month and has become a favorite "eatery" of country fans everywhere. This month’s shows feature country music performances served up by the stars of yesterday and today. See the March schedule and photo links - Webster & Associates

Rural Rhythm Records announced the upcoming bluegrass album, THE BACK FORTY by Marty Raybon & Full Circle releasing Tuesday, March 26.

"DRIVERS... start your engines!"  Iconic southern rockers The Marshall Tucker Band (MTB), uttered those four words on national television when The MTB were tapped to grand marshal the NASCAR race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Saturday, March 9. - Absolute Publicity

More join George Jones for his Final Nashville Concert, is anyone not appearing! See the huge line up Webster Associates

Lee Brice, Randy Houser and Jerrod Niemann are set to triple headline the final night of 5th Annual Country on the Beach Party in Key West, FL scheduled for October 5-8, 2013 at the Reach Resort to benefit the  T.J. Martell Foundation

Andy Griggs latest project released February 26 called "NAKED", was featured as “new & noteworthy” on US iTunes see Press Release for details and track listing.

ARTICLES
CMA Close Up - Ashley Monroe Finds Her Own Way (By Erin Duvall)

News Observer.com - Marty Stuart keeps busy preserving traditional music
Extract: Stuart is pleased that country music has gone mainstream, as witnessed by its presence in the national media. But the music itself seems to have lost its identity, as the nature of America itself has changed. “The thing I loved about traveling when I was a kid, and the country music I joined up with, is that it was all about individuality and character. Whether it was about the cast of country music or the faces of America in one small town after another. “When I ride around in the bus these days, it’s the same town everywhere I go. It’s the same set of box stores. And when I turn on country radio, I don’t know who’s singing or who’s playing. It’s all about homogenization. I think that’s what’s happening.”...“I think the most important thing for the likes of me and my peers is to make sure that traditional country music makes it into the hands of young people. And to make sure they know there’s a future for it, it’s not dead. “There is still a handful of old-timers left -the old kings and queens. We have to make sure that they make it home safely and warm. The next part of the job is to make sure the young ones get it in their hands and their hearts.”

Billboard 615 - Terri Clark Brings Dierks Bentley, Reba Along for 'Classic' Album

CMT - Next Women of Country: Sarah Darling - She Finds New Fans Through "Home to Me"

Tampa Bay Times - Blake Shelton leaves sold-out Strawberry Festival crowd happy…"proved a charming showman" 
Blake Shelton wasn't sure how he felt about playing the Florida Strawberry Festival. After all, this is a famously dry event, and the Dean Martin of country music, the final act on the final night of the 11-day shindig, isn't used to sober crowds.
"I don't see any guys with throw-up on their shirts like I normally do at my shows," the tall, scruffy singer deadpanned Sunday (March 10, 2013) as he surveyed the sold-out throngs packing the Wish Farms Soundstage, a stadium that seats about 12,000…...

The Oklahoman (Concert review) - Tishomingo resident Miranda Lambert performs at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Friday, March 8, 2013.
BOOKS
The Wheel Book: Brad Paisley will release an iBook, Building A Wheelhouse, in conjunction with the release of his new album Wheelhouse. What's an iBook? It's developed by a hip design company out of Venice, CA called Slender Fungus. They ride scooters around their office and come up with ideas on how they can make reading more fun. So ... the interactive book will offer interviews, videos, photographs and "multi-touch" information about the songwriting and production of the album. Both album and iBook are available April 9.
Building A Wheelhouse explores the recording process of Wheelhouse. Designed with Apple’s digital book creation app, iBooks Author, Building A Wheelhouse gives an in-depth Multi-Touch look at the album with insights from Brad and the team behind the album. The book also features exclusive interviews, video and photo galleries.

SPOTIFY COUNTRY
For users of this online music streaming service here are some of the more recent additions and recommendations.
Breaking news:
As of March 20 you’re no longer limited to 5 plays per track.
You can now listen to your favourite songs as many times as you like !!







Billboard Country Songs – A full playlist of the week’s most popular songs ranked by BDS monitored radio airplay and audience impressions



WATCH
Templeton Thompson brand new video “When I Get That Pony Rode” showcases a vocalist with a soaring vocal edge a-la Trisha Yearwood and it's easy to see how she's become a favorite go-to singer in Nashville's songwriting community. In the video, Templeton sings about the freedom she experiences while riding on her Pony. The singer is often mixng her love of horses with her music.
** US Region Viewers can view it on CMT.com

Gretchen Peters eTown performance from August 2012 has been archived (both the audio podcast and video)
eTown hosts Nick and Helen Forster welcome two world-class acts with Boulder roots – The Wood Brothers and Gretchen Peters. "Woman On The Wheel" rocked !! >> YouTube

While we usually associate singer Jana Kramer with country music and with her fiancé Brantley Gilbert, she is also an accomplished actress who starred in ‘One Tree Hill.’ Additionally, Kramer has a role in an upcoming, war-themed drama called ‘Approaching Midnight.’ In the feature-length film, Kramer plays Aspen Malverne, the daughter of a mayor in small town America. Trailer >> YouTube

Miranda Lambert  is getting into character for her “Mama’s Broken Heart” video. The sassy songstress has released  her video in which she handles her heartbreak with bouffant hair, a high-society home and gardening shears. The video premiered on VEVO and you can watch it here and see how she hides her crazy!
“The reason I love this song is because it’s about how sometimes when you get your heart broken, you kinda go a little bit crazy,” Miranda says of the tune, which was penned by fellow Texan Kacey Musgraves with Shane McAnally and Brandy Clark. “You drink too much, you smoke too much, you cut your hair … you find a rebound. Sometimes your mama, if she’s like my mama, has to slap you around and say, ‘Straighten up, girl!’”

Ashley Monroe – “Like A Rose” (Official Video) >> YouTube

Teea Goans WZTV FOX 17 - Tennessee Mornings performing "I've Done Enough Dying Today" - www.fox17.com

Josh Ritter "New Lover", terrific lyric video, can you type this fast! - http://vimeo.com/59304048
Free lyric books available in the UK with any purchase of Josh's new album "The Beast In Its Tracks", CD or LP, which was released on Match 5th. Check UK stores

Lady Antebellum world premiere the video for ‘Downtown,’ on E! News: Check out what happens Hillary Scott slips into some black leather and lots of makeup as she and 2 Broke Girls star Beth Behrs wreak havoc on the streets of Los Angeles.Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood play two donut-chomping police officers who eventually end up arresting the ladies.
"Downtown" is the first single off the country trio's upcoming new album GOLDEN
(out May 7) >> YouTube

This is definitely the most fun we’ve ever had shooting a video,” said Hillary Scott. “Beth was sweet enough to agree to help out for this video. It’s not often I have a partner in crime to help me stir up a little trouble for Dave and Charles!”


CMC premiered the brand-new video from rising sister duo, Baylou (Barb Baillie and Victoria Baillie). “Hoedown” is the first video from the girls' new album, GO TO HELL & I LOVE YOU set for release March 15 and is features songs co-written with award winning and chart toping international writers Eric Paslay (a writer on recent #1 US Billboard hits ‘Barefoot Blue Jean Night’ from Jake Owen, Eli Young Band’s ‘Even If It Breaks Your Heart’ & Love & Theft’s ‘Angel Eyes’), Emily Shackelton, Jamie Paulin and the Grammy nominated Ira Dean  >> YouTube

Lee Kernaghan – “Ute Me” (Official Music Video, produced by Jesse Fraser.) from the album "Beautiful Noise" through ABC Music/Universal Music Australia. Featuring The Wolfe Brothers and footage from the 2012 Deni Ute Muster  >> YouTube
So who is playing the hot female role in the vid? Answer Kelly Pantaleoni:
Vital Stats: Height: 5' 7" ,Weight: 110 lbs, Bust: 34" , Waist: 25"
She grew up in the country town of Deniliquin. In 2010 the then 19-year-old who lives in San Francisco was the first Australian to enter Miss California. Kelly was born in California and has dual citizenship.
Lee explains: “ We had a model booked from Sydney to play the “Ute Me Girl” and at the last minute she bailed out – she told the director she didn’t want to go down there because it was too feral and she feared for her safety [laughs]. So she was obviously the wrong girl for the clip. So we made a few enquiries on the site and it just so happened that the people that ran the backstage catering at Deni, their daughter is a model based in the United States and she just happened to be back in town. So we got this absolute glamour girl who is country through and through – born and raised in Deniliquin, and making a name for herself in America and she is in the clip and features beautifully too
In the conservative world of country music, the sight of a pole-dancer cavorting on the back of a ute could be considered a risk.
Kelly Pantaleoni
Lee Kernaghan knew it was a gamble inviting a scantily-clad model to bust some moves in the sexy clip to his latest single Ute Me. Filmed at last year's Deniliquin Ute Muster, the video also features a chorus of festival goers singing along with Kernaghan, all clearly loving the show.
While the country music great had no fears about connecting with a young audience, there was a worry older fans might take offence - with even his dad raising concerns.
"My dad Ray took me asides and said 'son are you sure about this'," Kernaghan laughs.
The mother Kathy Smits and daughter Kelly Pantaleoni joined the family backstage team and catered for the Deniliquin Ute Muster together, feeding famous stars like Aussie band The Living End and US superstar Kelly Clarkson.
Kelly also played a leading role in Lee’s “Beautiful Noise” Video - ‘‘Lee’s really nice and was really thankful that I was there. He said I really helped them out,’’ she said.

COUNTRY FASHION
Celebrity fashion disasters: Elizabeth McGovern the Downton Abbey star and member of Sadie & the Hotheads looks crazy rather than quirky in this quilted coat at a Harper's Bazaar party in London on 19 February - Photo Link

Dress to impress: Gwyneth Paltrow vamps it up in leather trousers and Nicholas Kirkwood SS13 heels at Hugo Boss fragrance launch - Photo

Miley Cyrus is photographed by Brian Bowen Smith wearing the Stripe Cotton Spandex Jersey Crop Tee from American Apparel ($ 28.00). She wroteStopped by to visit @RealDenikaB who’s working w @brianbowensmith and somehow my hair got slicked back and we started shooting

Taylor Swift, the April cover Girl of UK's InStyle  needs no introduction. made a surprisingly low-key entrance to their photoshoot in London's NW10 wearing jeans, a jumper and flats. Her favourite piece was "woodstock met Wonderland" when she put on the Marchesa lace babydoll top (p134 of the magazine). At the end of the shoot the pop/country princess jumped straight back on a private jet to scoop an award in Milan such is "Life in the Swift Lane"
Taylor Swift Instyle Magazine -Collage
(Click to enlarge)

Watch a behind the scenes video of Taylor's InStyle shoot below...
Taylor Swift stars in their modern fairytale themed shoot as she strikes a pose in Gucci, Giles and more...watch Taylor's cover shoot vids - http://bcove.me/mov7g1yw  - http://bcove.me/wn7kgc4e

Digital Edition By IPC Media Limited is available - iTunes UK

Taylor Swift looks pretty, talks writing songs about ex-boyfriends and her fears about ending up alone
With her hair in a cute updo and her bod poured into a frothy tiered gown, the singer is only missing one thing: Prince Charming!
But, you know what? Swifty doesn't even need a prince–she's doing fine ruling her humongous kingdom all by herself!
Read the interview and see the photos at www.mirror.co.uk

Swift Analysis: "If you want some big revelation, since 2010 I have dated exactly two people,” says Taylor Swift in her Vanity Fair cover story. A preview suggests that music's biggest star is ready to address the reality that her every move is tabloid fodder. "The fact that there are slide shows of a dozen guys that I either hugged on a red carpet or met for lunch or wrote a song with ... it’s just kind of ridiculous," she says. The story, titled The Growing of a Superstar: Her Men ... Her Moods ... Her Music, will be featured in Vanity Fair's April issue.
Cover Preview: Taylor Swift Fights Back About Her Love Life, the Hyannis Port House—and Has Words for Tina Fey and Amy Poehler ..read the interview at www.vanityfair.com

COUNTRY GOSSIP
Taylor Swift has a 24-hour bodyguard at her penthouse apartment in Nashville.  She says because of the guys who write her and say they want to chain her up in their basements. One guy in California drove all the way to Nashville and attempted to get into her building.
Taylor keeps a framed photo of Kanye West infamously crashing her 2009 MTV Video Music Awards acceptance speech as a reminder of her journey to the top.
The rapper stormed the stage when Swift won Best Female Video over his pal Beyonce, leaving the Love Story hitmaker at a loss for words as West expressed his outrage to the stunned crowd.
West has since apologised for ruining the star's big night In Vanity Fair editors reveal the 23 year old has a picture of the headline-grabbing incident hanging in her Nashville, Tennessee home as a special memento.
The news was revealed in the publication's new cover interview, which was conducted at Swift's house. The article also details a handful of other unique items found in the Grammy winner's pad, such as a "six-foot topiary rabbit" and a "koi pond in the middle of the living room

Tim McGraw’s people are denying reports he has a secret son. A 23-year-old student told tabloids that when Tim was engaged to his mother, Kristine Donahue, Tim helped raise him. The report claims when they split, Tim maintained a relationship with the boy and that Faith is jealous.

Reba McEntire laughed when she heard the rumor a few weeks ago that Blake Shelton cheated on his wife and said, “I wouldn’t want her on my bad side and if I was married to Miranda Lambert, that’d be the last thing on my mind because that woman is fierce.”

Keith Urban flies to the UK just to say "hello" to his family. The country singer is currently busy working as a judge on 'American Idol' but delights his wife Nicole Kidman - who is currently based in London with their daughters Sunday Rose, four, and Faith Margeret, two, while filming 'Before I Go To Sleep' - by jetting across the Atlantic to demonstrate his "crazy" love for her. At this year's Oscars, Nicole wore a low-cut L'Wren Scott gown and admitted she chose it to please her spouse.
She told the Daily Mail newspaper: "It had all the bells and whistles for men. 'You know what men like in a dress, and that's what I wore. It was for Keith."

PHOTO
Nashville ABC Galleries! - beta.abc.go.com/shows/nashville

Miranda Lambert strutted around the stage in a sparkly silver skirt, leathery black lace-up top and knee-high black boots, tossing her recently shortened and straightened blond locks and showing off her signature stomping-and-spinning dance moves, the Texas native was the epitome of womanly confidence. But she soon proved she wasn’t afraid to show her vulnerable side.
All my in-laws are in the house tonight, so forgive me if I start crying,” the Tishomingo resident said as her band began playing her heartbreaking hit “Over You”. See the March 8, 2013 photos by Garett Fisbeck, for The Oklahoman

R.I.P
Remembering Mindy: A memorial for Mindy McCready, attended by about 200, was held at 4pm on March 6 at Cathedral Of The Incarnation, 2015 West End Avenue in Nashville. The service was open to family, friends and the music industry featured performances from Bekka Bramlett, Lorrie Morgan, Bryan White and more.
Reverend Edward F. Steiner welcomed guests at the start of the service, and then the church was filled with the sounds of “I’ll See You Yesterday” >> Audio

Mindy McCready-Funeral Service-Collage
(Click to enlarge)
 Family members and some of McCready’s friends from the music industry all took a few moments to speak to the crowd.
Following her death, Mindy’s family and fans were given a glimpse into her mindset with the posthumous release of her song “I’ll See You Yesterday”, which she recorded just days before claiming her own life. The song was written by Courtney Dashe, who revealed to E! News she had no idea McCready had even recorded the song until after her death.

The service was attended by Mindy’s mother, Gayle Inge, her brother Tim and his family, her aunts and cousin.
A pair of McCready’s cousins spoke for the singer’s family. Ashley Webb read a letter from McCready’s father, Tim (who was too emotional to attend the service) who said he watched his daughter deteriorate every day in the weeks after Wilson’s death.
Cousin Tristan White said McCready ‘‘was passionate in everything she did. Sometimes that passion got her in trouble.’’ White too read a letter from McCready’s father. He remembered his daughter’s talents but lamented her poor life choices. He also stressed that his daughter’s two young sons were her love, and that she was in love with her late fiancé David Wilson.
White also thanked a list of friends who went ‘‘above and beyond’’ for McCready, including Dr. Drew Pinsky, the ‘‘Celeb Rehab’’ host who attempted to help McCready and reached out to her in the days after Wilson’s death. Pinsky has been criticized because five ‘‘Celeb Rehab’’ alumni have died since appearing on the show.
‘‘All these people are people who made a huge impact on Mindy’s life,’’ White said.
McCready’s former producer Jimmy Nichols, who helped guide her to the biggest successes of her singing career in the mid-to late-1990s, said he'd heard from McCready in the days before her death. She was seeking help with a song she wanted to put out in an attempt to restart her career. She sadly told him all she really wanted was her children back.
‘‘I love you, Mindy. Rest well,’’ he said. ‘‘You have so many angels guarding your soul tonight
Lorrie Morgan
sings at the service
McCready’s friend and former label mate Lorrie Morgan remembered their camaraderie back in the ’90s. Morgan spoke of the music and heartache she and McCready had in common and said she always “felt young and had fun” with McCready at their record label parties.
‘‘She achieved many of her dreams with No. 1 records and fame,’’ said Lorrie Morgan. ‘‘But we all know fame and fortune do not ensure happiness.’’
Morgan also spoke of the sadness McCready always had in her eyes. She wondered aloud if anything could have really made McCready happy, and closed by saying, “There’s a special place for her star above, and it will always be there and it will never burn out.”
Lorrie Morgan also sang “Ave Maria” at the service.  A '90s hitmaker, Bryan White, and McCready’s friend Bekka Bramlett performed too. McCready’s recording of the Garth Brooks hit “The Dance” was played to close the service.
Authorities in Arkansas confirmed Mindy died from a single gunshot wound to the head on February 17, 2013.

Reba McEntire (Facebook): My heart goes out to Mindy McCready's friends and family. What a talented lady she was. RIP Mindy.
3 Page / 48 photo Gallery at Music News Nashville / 11 Photo Gallery - www.kansas.com
Mindy made a TV appearance in the UK on the Last Chance Lottery (?) back in 1998 when her single "Oh Romeo" made the charts (video). It peaked at number 41 which is not that high but more than many bigger league Country artists have achieved in Britain.

Claude King, who is best remembered for his 1962 classic "Wolverton Mountain," died Thursday morning (March 7) at his home in Shreveport, LA. King's eldest son, Duane King, said the singer was found unresponsive in his bed. He was 90.
King had just celebrated his 90th birthday and 67th wedding anniversary to his wife Barbara.
Claude King - Archive photo

Born February 5, 1923 in Keithville, LA, King's first love was no different than other artists of the period.
His first single for the label, "Big River, Big Man," peaked at No. 7 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, and was the first of 19 top 40 records through 1971. His biggest hit was 1962's "Wolverton Mountain," (Audio) which he co-wrote with Merle Kilgore.
The song was based on Kilgore's real-life uncle, Clifton Clowers and spent nine weeks atop the country songs chart, and peaked at No. 6 on the Hot 100.
Shreveport, La. The ‘Wolverton Mountain’ hitmaker leaves behind a legacy that includes many other Top 10 hits, as well as memories for early fans of the Louisiana Hayride.
King's other hits included "Sheepskin Valley," ''Building a Bridge," ''Hey Lucille!," ''Big River, Big Man," ''I've Got The World By The Tail," ''Catch a Little Raindrop," ''All For The Love Of A Girl" and "The Comancheros," which was inspired by the John Wayne movie of the same name.
During the ’50s, he became a regular on the widely popular radio program, Louisiana Hayride, often sharing the bill with the likes of Elvis Presley, Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, and Hank Williams.
He is survived by wife Barbara and their children.

(March 7, 2013 – BBC News) Canadian country-folk singer Tom Connors has died of natural causes age 77, his promoter has said. Known as Stompin' Tom and one of Canada's biggest cultural figures, he embraced vibrant patriotic themes.
Connors would often lament that other Canadian songwriters never seemed to sing about their country.
He reportedly penned over 300 songs and released some 50 albums totaling over 4 million copies sold.  At the age of 15, Connors left home to hitchhike across Canada.
Three of his best-known songs – “Sudbury Saturday Night”, “Bud the Spud and The Hockey Song” - play at every home game of the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Twitter: "We have lost a true Canadian original. RIP Stompin' Tom Connors. You played the best game that could be played."
Connors was born on 9 February 1936 in Saint John, New Brunswick. He was honoured with the Order of Canada in 1996 and was featured on a postage stamp.
Connors is survived by his wife, two daughters, two sons, and several grandchildren.
Recorded at the Horseshoe Tavern in 1973 >> YouTube

Guitarist Alvin Lee, whose incendiary performance with the British band Ten Years After was one of the highlights of the 1969 Woodstock festival, has died. He was 68. Lee's website says he "passed away after unforeseen complications following a routine surgical procedure." An assistant to his daughter also confirmed the news to NPR.
His band's biggest hit — "I'd Love to Change the World" — came a couple years after Woodstock.

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