Saturday 26 April 2014

Country Billboard Chart News April 24, 2014

Country Billboard Chart News April 24, 2014

updated Sunday 27 April 2014 (Album totals ammended)

RIAA Certifications

Platinum = Sales of over 1-million units
Gold = Sales of over 500,000 units

Cole Swindell’s single “Chillin’ It” (GOLD and Platinum certified)

In Brief:  Billboard Country Charts

Country Album Chart ** No. 1 (9 cumulative weeks) Crash My Party Luke Bryan
Hot Country Songs ** No.1 (2 weeks) ** “Play It Again” Luke Bryan
Country Airplay ** No. 1 (2 weeks) ** “Drink to That All Night” Jerrod Niemann
Country Digital Songs ** No.1 (3 weeks) ** Play It Again” Luke Bryan

Billboard Top 200 / Country Album Chart News

The soundtrack to Disney's "Frozen," fueled by Easter shopping, earned its biggest sales week yet and 11th week at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart (BB200). The album sold 258,807 copies (up 94% on the previous week) in the week ending April 20, according to Nielsen SoundScan (The Easter holiday was April 20.) This is also the fifth consecutive week that it has sold more than 100,000 copies. To date, "Frozen" has sold 2,335,394 copies in 21 weeks. Since SoundScan's point-of-sale data began powering the Billboard 200's rankings on May 25, 1991, "Frozen" is just the ninth album — and third soundtrack — to spend at least 11 weeks at No.1.

Luke Bryan with CRASH MY PARTY rebounded from #8 to #6 on the BB200 and made a 2-1 hop on Billboard Top Country Albums, displacing last weeks chart topper as Martina McBride's EVERLASTING dived from #7 to #47 on the BB200 (1-6 Country; sales were some 57% down on her debut week).

Bryan’s Crash My Party hit the summit once more with sales of 33,000, up 77%, to log a ninth No.1 cumulative week, tacking on Greatest Gainer honours. It last topped the chart for the week Jan. 18 when it sold 43,000 copies. That's the longest run at #1 for an album by a male solo artist since Jason Aldean's "My Kinda Party" topped the chart for 12 weeks back in 2011. (So if you're a country artist and particularly a Bro-Country guy then it’s best to have Party in the title if you want a big seller)

Florida Georgia Line's HERE'S TO THE GOOD TIMES dropped from #10 to #14 on the BB200 but rose 3-2 Country in its 72nd chart week. A set chock full of summer fun, drinking beer, driving back roads and a bookend track titled "Party People"!

There were 5 new releases which impacted on the Billboard 200 and Top 25 Country Albums.

1) First up was Jessie James Decker with COMIN’ HOME (19 Recordings) which blew in at No.28 on the BB200, No.5 Billboard Country and No.9 on the Billboard Digital Albums Charts with sales of 11,144 copies.
In the UK, on this side of the pond, she is a name that many will be wondering just who she is? The release of this six-song EP that has earned the weeks Hot Shot Debut was not flagged up by the usual music outlets and country music news websites, reviews and newsletters.  
This sexy singer-songwriter, who as an Indie act has turned reality TV into a chart success, thus made her first appearance on Top Country Albums. What is even more impressive is that the set starts with just three days of sales, as it was released Friday, April 18 and hit No.1 on the iTunes Country albums.
The EP comes preceded by a gorgeous promotional single
>> “I Do, a theme from her reality show ‘Eric & Jessie: Game On‘ aired on E! (performed on the Nov. 3 season E! Network finale) and released in late-October last year. It made a debut at #30 on Billboard Country Digital chart selling 16,000 copies which was her first single released since marrying the pro-football NFL Wide Reciever Eric Decker of the then Denver Broncos on June 22, 2013 (Image). It also made a Hot Country Songs debut at No.39.

When under the name of Jessie James her Pop/Rock self titled album debut (Mercury Records) which was released August 11, 2009 peaked at #23 on the Billboard 200 has sold 120,000 copies. 
Hot Couple Eric & Jessie Decker
"Wanted" the album's lead single (April 14, 2009) peaked at No.40 on the Billboard Hot 100 with second single "I Look So Good (Without You)" (Aug 25, 2009) reaching a No.138 peak on the Billboard Hot Digital Songs.
On the week of Feb 8, 2012 >> “When You Say My Name” (1.7 million YouTube views) hit #79 on Billboard Country Digital Singles with sales of over 5,600 copies. Also in 2012 she released >> "Military Man" which peaked at #49 on Hot Country Songs

Jessie became a new mom when she gave birth to their daughter, Vivianne Rose Decker, on March 18, 2014. Vivianne weighed 8 lbs., 2 oz. and measured 20 inches long at birth — and, she came sporting a full head of hair! E! News reported. See the latest Bundle Of Joy Cute Pics
Jessie’s other baby "Comin’ Home," is described in an April 20 correspondence from her PR camp as "a candid celebration of her pop and country influences," is now available for purchase on all digital platforms.
>> Listen to "Coming Home" (Audio) >> Comin Home (EP Preview)
6 Tracks/ Time: 19:09 MP3 - UK iTunes - US

Congrats Jessie on your Hot Shot Debut! 
Jesse shares: "These are songs that I have writing and working on for a long time. I co-wrote 4 out of 6 of them. I was really passionate about them and I felt that they went so well together. They are a good selection of where I am at in my life right now musically." Read more Digital New EP and CMC Chat
In March 2014 it was announced Eric & Jessie were heading to the East Coast after Eric signed a five-year contract with the New York Jets. His then beautiful pregnant wife showed her support on Twitter, writing, "so excited for the next chapter and to call NY home! So proud of hubby and his decision!"
The NFL wide receiver played for four seasons with the Denver Broncos, including in the 2014 Super Bowl against the winning Seattle Seahawks. Denver sportscaster Vic Lombardi spoke with the athlete, relaying a message (which Jessie retweeted) that said: "Decker wants Bronco fans to know how much fun he had in Denver. Appreciates the fans support. Exciting times for him. About to have a baby."
FUN Fact: Georgia stunner Jessie James has been described as the smokingest thing to happen to country music since Willie Nelson rolled his first joint.
FOLLOW: Jessie James Decker:
FACEBOOK - 310,000 followers; TWITTER - 337,000 Followers; INSTAGRAM - YOUTUBE

2) The Randy Rogers Band with the 2-CD/1 DVD project HOMEMADE TAMALES: LIVE AT FLOORES debut at No.70 (#11 Country) selling around 5,000 copies
Having left UMG Nashville they created their own record label in partnership with Thirty Tigers. The Texas-based band who hail from San Marcos comprise Brady Black (Fiddle, Harmony Vocals), Geoffrey Hill (Electric Guitar, Harmony Vocals), Les Lawless (Drums), Jon "Chops" Richardson (Bass, Vocals) and Randy Rogers (Guitar, Lead Vocals). The Randy Rogers Band built its audience by combining forces: Their dynamic live act centered around songs that fit the rowdy, party vibe of the concert circuit.

Critical reception for “Homemade Tamales”:
2-CD 26 Tracks/ Time: 1:47:29 CD - MP3 - UK iTunes - 
Allmusic (Rating: 3.5 STARS)  ....the 2014 collection Homemade Tamales indeed has a rustic, ragged feel that sometimes feels a little earthy, and sometimes a little spicy. Collected from two October 2013 performances at Floore's Country Store in Helotes, Texas, this finds the Randy Rogers Band at a loose, limber, muscular peak -- regional kings surveying their territory. Certainly, the double-disc, 26-song length of Homemade Tamales would seem too long for the unconverted, yet the album demonstrates the depth of the band's catalog and their musical versatility is amply and casually on display in a way it isn't on the studio albums. There are moments that are purely acoustic balanced by plenty of incidents where the entire band are featured in full-flight, allowing themselves to settle into a groove or perhaps stretch out and improvise. More than any simple studio album, this shows the connection between the Randy Rogers Band, and while its length may keep the curious away, it's that eclecticism that makes it worthwhile for those who have yet to learn the pleasures of the RRB.

3) The Secret Sisters debuted at No.110 (#18 Country) with 3,700 copies sold of PUT YOU NEEDLE DOWN (Beladroit / Republic).  It also charts at #1 on Billboard Heatseeker Albums and #3 on Folk Albums which is headed by the 3-week No1 set “A Dotted Line” by Nickel Creek (#77 BB200) with whom they are currently touring in April and May.
"It's slightly terrifying when people say, 'I don't know how to categorize the Secret Sisters. What genre are you?'" Lydia admits. "You need to be categorized to find radio success, but we’re not too concerned with radio. If you can’t categorize your music, then you’re not doing what's trendy and you're not following a formula. So if you're not categorized, there's a good chance you're doing something special."
The new album title? It’s not about turntables, embroidery or heroin. According to the sisters, it's an evocative statement about youth, growth and the passage of time. “It’s actually a line we pulled from one of PJ Harvey’s songs,” Laura said. “We do a cover of ‘Pocket Knife.’ This new record is very much a grown-up sound -- not exactly edgy, but more maturity to it. There’s a representative aspect to it. We’re not kids anymore; we’ve grown up a lot. It’s all encompassing.”...Read More
>> Listen to the NPR feature: Harmony-Loving Sisters Keep It Retro...

Critical reception for “Put You Needle Down”:
Folk  Pop/ Rock  Country
12 Tracks/ Time: 43:40 CD - - US iTunes - Sleeve Art Photo
>> WatchLonely Island" >> Watch "Dirty Lie" performed by The Secret Sisters and "I Cannot Find A Away" (Live)

Allmusic Guide (Rating: 4 STARS)....this second Burnett-produced album updates the sound a decade or so into a mesh of folky honky tonk, garage rock, and girl group ballads, with a touch of Daniel Lanois-like swampy noodling on a few tracks, making Put Your Needle Down sound a bit like Emmylou Harris' Lanois-produced Wrecking Ball as sung by the Everly Brothers' little sisters while fronting the Cowboy Junkies. That may sound like a mess, but it isn't, and this album grows on you as it progresses,
....This set breaks that bind and means the Secret Sisters have the freedom to go anywhere from here, and whether it's musically forward or back in time really matters little with this kind of talent. It's nice to know that they're not about to stand still.

Saving Country Music (Rating: 1.3/4 out of 2) This album shouldn’t be characterized as The Secret Sisters with T Bone Burnett. It should be couched as The Secret Sisters versus T Bone Burnett. Such an over-produced wall of serrated sounds punishes the ear throughout this album, it’s like trying to view the Eiffel Tower through a plague of locusts: You know there’s something very pretty and breathtaking there, but you have to fight with flailing arms to
see, and you’re rarely allowed to relax and bask in its beauty. T Bone Burnett’s production doesn’t seem to have any sense or respect for the time and place The Secret Sisters’ music naturally evokes; their music seems only the canvas for T Bone to do his worst. After the very first song, I was already tired of the ever-present tambourine on this album, which permeates this record deeper than a sheepdog’s flea dip. The tambourine rattles inside your skull like a ricocheting bullet; steadfast and unrelenting....despite the monstrosity T Bone constructed though his work on this album, I love Put Your Needle Down. I think this album is great—one captivating song after another...And why did it take nearly 1 1/2 years for this album to get to our ears? It was recorded in December of 2012, and January of 2013. I think there’s a story there in itself, if only to answer why two young women with the wind behind their backs from their first album had to wait so long for a second release. But I’ll be damned, I really, really enjoy this album overall. Simply put, The Secret Sisters are the best female duo out there right now

Twang Nation (Rating: 5 BABES) ...Listening to a Secret Sisters release is a crash course in the great American songbook. There’s more grit and heat in these performances than on their previous effort. They seem more assured. Less winsome demeanor and more poised audacity. The 12 songs on “Put Your Needle Down,” many self-penned, proves the Sisters are no mere extraordinarily talented throwback novelty act. They are now interpreting the ages in their own impeccable style and making their own way.

4) Ray Price, the 1996 Country Music Hall of Fame honoree scored his best unaccompanied rank in more than 32 years on Top Country Albums with BEAUTY IS … : THE FINAL SESSIONS (Amerimonte), which entered at No.22 Country, #143 BB200 with 3,300 copies sold. 
Price (“The Cherokee Cowboy”), who finished the album shortly before his death at age 87 in December, had last charted higher on his own when Town & Country peaked at No. 17 in 1981.
Fred Foster discusses how he and Ray Price chose songs to be featured on the country icon's final album which originally aired on Sirius XM Willie's Roadhouse >> YouTube
“When you are entrusted with the legacy of such an influential trailblazer for the genre, you make every effort to build a team to execute a successful launch,” recalls Steve Popovich, Jr President of AmeriMonte Records.  “I am so grateful for the impact and the milestones that we have reached for Ray.  I want to extend a thank you to country radio, journalists around the globe, retail outlets and industry professionals in both the Texas and Nashville communities for their unwavering support of this project.”

Critical reception for “Beauty Is…: The Final Sessions”:
12 Tracks/ Time: 41:29 CD - MP3 - Smart Choice Music - - US iTunes

Associated Press by Michael McCall: The late Ray Price titled his final studio recording "Beauty Is ."after an opening duet with Vince Gill that draws on the axiom about the eye of the beholder. Music is similarly subjective, but it would be hard to imagine anyone not recognizing the sublime beauty of the late Ray Price's singing: He owned one of the richest voices and most emotionally expressive styles in country music history. Price died in December, and when he entered the studio earlier in 2013 with producer Fred Foster, he realized "Beauty Is. " quite likely would be his last. 
is one of the most moving listening experiences
 I can ever remember and I’m not ashamed to say that
I shed some tears while listening -
Duncan Warwick editor of
Country Music People (UK ; May 2014 issue)
At age 87, he had spent a couple of years battling cancer and other ailments. Live, and on record, Price's voice had remained a remarkable instrument, yet there are moments on "Beauty Is ." where age, for the first time, appears to limit his breath and range. But Foster arranges these love songs to capitalize on the tonal quality of Price's voice. Set to string orchestrations accented by country instrumentation, Price sounds like a wise sage with a big heart and a gentle soul on touching songs such as Willie Nelson's "It Always Will Be," a romantic duet with Martina McBride on the standard "An Affair To Remember" and a second duet with Gill on the lovely "Until Then." Graceful to the end, Price takes a final bow with an elegant collection that nicely caps a great musical legacy.

Allmusic (Rating: 3.5 STARS) The album was finished in October of 2013, and Price passed less than two months later in December, making it a true swan song. Price's voice shows the wear and tear of the years, and no doubt his ill health, but it was still a powerfully vernacular vehicle, comfortable-sounding and full of his trademark graceful phrasing and flow..... The opener, "Beauty Lies in the Eyes of the Beholder," sets the tone, with a light but still lush string arrangement backing Price's dignified and almost breathless vocal..... making this a sweet, gentle coda and a beautifully fragile endnote to an iconic legacy.

EN 145 (Rating: 5 STARS) The credits to Beauty Is… list 17 string players, with earthy low cello tones regularly prominent. And the parts those strings perform—arranged and conducted by longtime Nashville studio ace Bergen White—sound old-school and right now, counter-melodically complex, jaw-dropping, beautiful....Price keeps coming back to the same images: the beauty of his lover and the beauty of her love for him, the beauty of the world. And he returns as well to the same necessary, contradictory ideas: “forever,” “eternity,” “always” and yet so very little time.  The inevitable end of life stands toe to toe with a promise of love with no end. In “This Thing of Ours,” Price considers waking his lover “just to see you smile / And hold you gently to me…” He pauses then, to make sure we get the point. Then he makes it: “…for a little while.” So much beauty, so little time. There’s a message there, I think, to everyone one of us who is willing to hear it, and even if we weren’t married to the late and great Ray Price.

5) Rodney Crowell made a bow at No.168 on the BB200 (#25 Country) with TARPAPER SKY (New West) selling around 3,000 copies.
Related Article: American Songwriter Painting Landscapes: A Q&A with Rodney Crowell

Critical reception for “Beauty Is…: The Final Sessions”:
11 Tracks/ Time: 42:08 CD - MP3 - UK iTunes - Smart Choice Music -

Allmusic (Rating: 4 Stars) Tarpaper Sky is a no-nonsense collection of Crowell songs unrestricted by concept, played by the core band from 1988's Diamonds & Dirt--guitarist Steuart Smith, drummer Eddie Bayers and bassist Michael Rhodes--as well friends. Justin Neibank helmed and mixed these sessions; he gets the essence of Crowell's sound perfectly. The standouts tend to be the mid-to uptempo numbers...It's a welcome return to form.
Country Weekly (Rating: A-) Rodney isn’t exposing a new side of his creativity with the release of his latest album, Tarpaper Sky. What he appears to be doing is revealing that, even after more than 40 years in the music business, he’s still making music that holds up to the artistic precedents he has set with albums like 2013’s Old Yellow Moon (with Emmylou Harris).
Songs like the zydeco-influenced “Fever on the Bayou” and the vintage rock ’n’ roll feel of “Somebody’s Shadow” and “Jesus Talk to Mama” show the versatile nature of Rodney’s vocals, while songs like “Grandma Loved That Old Man” showcase his ability to spin a story set to a melody...Like most projects released by Americana singer/songwriter or heritage acts, Tarpaper Sky is best enjoyed like a book, in its entirety as opposed to a chapter here and there. Take in the whole story.

Pop Matters (Rating: 6/10) The album is weighted down at points as the subject matter drifts a bit maudlin at times, particularly with the overly sappy arrangement of “Grandma Loved That Old Man”, a song that carries its’ saccharine bent a bit too obviously. There’s a tendency for Crowell’s music to be a tad too literal from time to time and a few tracks suffer from this perspective. The hits outweigh the misses, though, and by the time he ties a bow on Tarpaper Sky with “Oh What a Beautiful World”, its’ rather pedestrian title notwithstanding, Crowell sounds as convincing in his subjects and engaged in the musicianship as he has in years and seems determined to keep adding worthy titles to his already Hall of Fame caliber catalog. Ever the craftsman, it’s a safe bet that he’ll continue adding titles to his canon, note-by-note and word-by-word.

Paste Magazine Overshadowed by the glitz and bare midriffs, Crowell shifted his focus somewhat with a trilogy of rootsy singer/songwriter albums in the 2000s that he has described as partly autobiographical: The Houston Kid looked to his past, Fate’s Right Hand looked inward and The Outsider took a look around him. He does some of each on his latest, Tarpaper Sky, Crowell’s first solo album since 2008’s Sex and Gasoline and the follow-up to last year’s Old Yellow Moon, his Grammy-winning album of duets with Harris. Though these 11 songs aren’t always as sharply drawn as his best material, there’s plenty to love here.

  • Elsewhere outside the Top 25 Country albums saw The Oak Ridge Boys debut with 1,200 copies sold of live set BOYS NIGHT OUT (Cleopatra Records) 14 Tracks/ Time: 49:29 MP3 - Smart Choice Music -
  • Steve Earle’s TOWNES: THE BASICS debuts with 1,100 copies sold of a Record Store Day release. These original recordings, are available for the first time on vinyl.; HAND NUMBERED – see Facebook Images. In 2009 Steve Earle released an album of Townes Van Zandt songs. It began as solo guitar and vocal tracks recorded in October 2008 in New York City.
  • Sarah Davidson the singer who appeared on TBS series “Private Lives of Nashville Wives” and recently made a country bow at #30 (1,900 sales) has shifted around a quarter of  the album’s 4K tally this week for her Self-titled EP.
  • Singer-Songwriter Brandy Clark who has been on tour with Jennifer Nettles and made her first national TV appearances on David Letterman and Ellen has moved another 800 copies of 12 STORIES to bring her sales to 29,000 for her high quality critically-acclaimed indie Oct 2013 release.
2014 Country Album sales Year-To Date:
9,267,000 (Physical sales 6,087,000 (down 9%) + Digital sales 3,180,000 (down 15.2%)) which is 21.5% down at the same point in 2013 (11,800,000 sales)

Billboard Top 200 / Country Album Placings

(Issue dated Chart week of May 3, 2014)
(Country Album positions #1 - #25)
(TW) This Week, (LW) Last Week, Co (Country Album Chart placing / Movement)

Top 25 Hot Country Songs (week of May 3, 2014)

On Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart - which blends:
a) All-format airplay, as monitored by BDS 
b) Sales, as tracked by Nielsen SoundScan and
c) Streaming, (tracked by Nielsen BDS from such services as Spotify, Muve, Slacker, Rhapsody, Rdio and Xbox Music, among others) according to BDS it results in:

  • Luke Bryan logged a second week at No.1 on with “Play It Again” (Capitol Nashville), which added Streaming Gainer stripes for a third consecutive week (1.5 million U.S. streams, up 9%). The track spends a third straight week atop Country Digital Songs, with 105,000 downloads sold (down 3%) during the tracking week.
  • Brantley Gilbert’sBottoms Up” (Valory) tops Country Streaming Songs for a ninth cumulative week (1.7 million U.S. streams, up 4 percent). It topped Hot Country Songs for two weeks in March but the track maintains its vigor, bulleting for a second straight week at No.3 shifting another 64,000 (up 8%) Digital downloads.
Top 25 Hot Country Songs:

Luke Bryan with “Play It Again” stays at the Top of the Chart #1
Florida Georgia Line feat Luke Bryan with former #1 “This Is How Me Roll” holds at #2
Brantley Gilbert with former No1 “Bottoms Up” stays at #3
Jerrod Niemann with “Drink To That All Night” is up one, #5 - #4 p
Eric Church with “Give Me Back My Hometown” is down one, #4 - #5 q
Thomas Rhett with “Get Me Some Of That” moves up two, #8 - #6 p
Keith Urban with “Cop Car” climbs two, #9 - #7 p
Rascal Flatts with “Rewind” backs up one, #7 - #8 q
Miranda Lambert with “Automatic” falls three, #6 - #9 q
Dan + Shay with “19 You + Me” is up one, #11 - #10 p
Brett Eldredge with “Beat Of The Music” is up one, #12 - #11 p
Blake Shelton with “Doin’ What She Likes” falls two, #10 - #12 q
Jake Owen  with “Beachin’” is up one, #14 - #13 p
Justin Moore with “Lettin’ The Night Roll” is down one slot, #13 - #14 q
Tyler Farr with “Whiskey In My Water” is up 2 slots, #17 - #15 p
Hunter Hayes with “Invisible” slips one, #15 - #16 q
Lee Brice with “I Don’t Dance” jumps up five, #22 - #17 p
Luke Bryan with former No.1 “Drink A Beer” is down two, #16 - #18 q
Dustin Lynch with “Where It’s At” leaps up 29 slots, #48 - #19 p
Sara Evans with “Slow Me Down” is down one, #19 - #20 q
Craig Morgan with “Wake Up Lovin’ You” is down one, #20 - #21 q
Chris Young with “Who I Am With You” is up two, #24 - #22 p
Joe Nichols with “Yeah” climbs four, #27 - #23 p
Billy Currington with “We Are Tonight” is up one, #25 - #24 p
Craig Campbell with “Keep Them Kisses Comin’” is down two places, #23 - #25 q

Hot County Songs
** No.1 (2 weeks) /  Streaming Gainer ** “Play It Again” Luke Bryan
** Digital Gainer ** No.17 “I Don’t Dance” Lee Brice
** Airplay Gainer ** No.28 “River Bank” Brad Paisley
** Hot Shot Debut ** No.36 “Dirt Road” Kip Moore
Debut No.49 “Close Your Eyes” Parmalee 

Billboard Country Airplay Chart Week of May 3, 2014

Jerrod Niemann’s second Country Airplay No. 1 became his first to hold longer than one week, as “Drink to That All Night” (Sea Gayle/Arista Nashville) logged 46.668 million audience impressions (+0.953 milion) and received 7,386 radio plays (+137) to dominate the list for a second week. The top local audience contributors were: KKBQ Houston (1.4 million impressions), KKGO Los Angeles (1.3 million), WUSN Chicago (1.3 million) and KPLX Dallas (939,000).

  • Luke Bryan claimed his 14th consecutive top 10 on the Billboard Country Airplay tally (his 15th overall) as “Play It Again” (Capitol Nashville) drew 32.666 million audience impressions (up 10%) and made a 11-9 hop in its eighth chart week. Counting only promoted, non-seasonal singles, Bryan now ties Blake Shelton for third place among all artists with currently active top 10 streaks, a list led by Keith Urban’s 30 straight top 10s (2000-2013). Shelton achieved his 14th straight top 10 eleven weeks ago with “Doin’ What She Likes,” which ultimately topped the chart for two weeks. Urban is poised to score his 31st consecutive top 10 with “Cop Car” (Hit Red/Capitol Nashville), which jumps 13-11 on this week’s chart (dated May 3). Carrie Underwood commands the second-longest active top 10 run with 18 top 10s (2006-2013).
  • Brad Paisley with “River Bank” (Arista Nashville) at No.23 took home the weeks “Most Added” trophy as the song logged 1,637 radio spins (+797) thanks to 43 fresh radio commitments (ADDS) 
  • Blake Shelton featuring Gwen Sebastian with "My Eyes" at No.28 bagged the weeks “Most Increased Audience” honours. The song logged 8.219 million audience impressions, a gain of +5.077 milion; receiving 1,181 radio plays (+734) thanks to 32 radio adds.
  • Tim McGraw and Faith Hill returned to the Country Airplay chart with the couple’s first collaborative track in seven years (their fifth overall), noted as “Meanwhile Back at Mama’s” (Big Machine) snagged the “Hot Shot Debut" at No. 41. That’s the second-highest debut among those five charted songs, outpaced only by “It’s Your Love,” which debuted at No. 35 (chart dated May 10, 1997) on its way to a six-week No. 1 reign later that year — a remarkable feat, considering that no title had held more than five weeks in the 20 years since Waylon Jennings’ “Luckenbach, Texas (Back to the Basics of Love)” stayed for six weeks in 1977. Following “It’s Your Love,” the chart hosted another six-week No.1 far more quickly when McGraw’s solo track “Just to See You Smile” stayed six weeks in January/February 1998. McGraw and Hill later peaked at No.3 with “Just to Hear You Say That You Love Me” (1998), at No. 6 with “Let’s Make Love” (2000) and at No. 8 with “I Need You” (2007). The new collaboration previews McGraw’s album SUNDOWN HEAVEN TOWN, due to drop Sept. 16.
Women of Country 2014 Watch:
Miranda Lambert at No.10 ("Automatic"), Sara Evans at No.17 (“Slow Me Down”) were the only 2 solo female artists in the Top 30 Country Airplay songs. Cassadee Pope #40, Maggie Rose #47, Lucy Hale #52, Kacey Musgraves #53, Kelleigh Bannen #54, Jamie Lynn Spears #55 and Kellie Pickler #59 were an additional seven females in the remaining 31-60 slots, to make it 15% of the entire Top 60 chart.

Country Airplay
*** No. 1 (2 weeks) *** "Drink To That All Night" Jerrod Niemann
**  Most Added ** No.23 “River Bank” Brad Paisley
** Most Increased Audience ** No.28 "My Eyes" Blake Shelton Featuring Gwen Sebastian 
** Hot Shot Debut ** No. 41 "Meanwhile Back At Mama's" Tim McGraw featuring Faith Hill
Debut No.60 "Testing The Water" Thompson Square

Billboard Country Digital Singles Chart Week of May 3, 2014

  • Luke Bryan remained atop the Billboard Digital Singles Chart for a third straight week with “Play It Again”. The single sold 105,000 downloads, down 3% on the previous week.
  • Florida Georgia Line featuring Luke Bryan held at No.2 with “This Is How We Roll” . In 22 chart weeks it has sold 939,000 units (down 5%) and looks set to blast over the Platinum 1-million line next week.
  • Brantley Gilbert’sBottoms Up” (Valory) bullets and held at No.3 selling 64,000 downloads sold (up 8%)
  • Jake Owen’s latest hit “Beachin” (RCA Nashville) advanced 10-7 and looks like a contender for a good time 2014 Summer Song front-runner.
  • Dustin Lynch’sWhere It’s At” (Broken Bow) blew in at No.10, his highest debut of his career with a first week haul of 34,000 downloads.
  • Kip Moore’sDirt Road” (MCA Nashville) made its bow at No.21opening with 20K sales
Women Of Country Watch
Only 1 solo female artist on the Top 30 placings:
Miranda Lambert with her new single "Automatic" in its tenth week at retail sold 39K down 24% and fell 4-8

 Dropping off the Top 30:
18-31 George Strait I Got A Car  
29-34 Luke Bryan That’s My Kind Of Night  
20-36 Darius Rucker Wagon Wheel  
9-37 Tim McGraw feat Faith Hill Meanwhile Back At Mama’s  
19-38 Brad Paisley River Bank  

Top 30 Digital Singles in Country Music (published April 24, 2014)
 (LW) Last Week  (TW) This Week
*Numbers are rounded to nearest 1000th

Country Aircheck/ Mediabase chart

Jerrod Niemann with “Drink To That All Night” (Sea Gayle/Arista) moved 2-1 to top the Mediabase Country chart for the tracking week April 13th to the 19th. The song logged 7,623 radio spins (+298) and 61.82 million audience impressions (+1.729 million) from 148 tracking stations.
So it’s congrats to Sea Gayle/Arista Nashville’s Jerrod Niemann, Arista's  Lesly Tyson, Jeri Cooper, John Sigler and their promo team for scoring this week’s #1 song.s This is NIEMANN’s second career chart-topper and the debut single off the HIGH NOON album, released in April 12, 2014. His previous #1, “Lover, Lover” came in 2010, off his “Judge Jerrod And The Hung Jury” album.

It was also congrats to Big Machine’s Jack Purcell, Mandy McCormack and the entire promo team for earning 36 MEDIABASE Country ADDS on Tim McGraw’s "Meanwhile Back At Mama's" which also features Faith Hill. Those adds give TIM the "Most Added" title for the chart week. Bagels were due to be delivered to Big Machine's office (April 22nd) to congratulate the staff on their success.

For a detailed report check out Country Aircheck Weekly Issue 393 - April 21, 2014 [PDF File]
For the very latest up to the minute Mediabase Chart (Past 7 Days) go here -

Wednesday 23 April 2014

Country Bites News snippets April 14 - April 20, 2014

Country Bites News snippets April 14 – April 20, 2014



Listen back to Ags Connolly's Country Outlaws: Oxfordshire singer/songwriter Ags Connolly salutes his country heroes - BBC Radio Oxford Page
"Nashville today is has become ridiculously over the top now, you've got acts that are completely unrecognisable from any sort of Pop music, it's exactly the same as Pop music even though it markets itself as country. There are some acts who are desperate to get away from that and stand alone and say I'm doing my own thing, I'm not part of that crowd" said Ags

Lisa Redford joined Bob Harris (OBE) in a "Under The Apple Tree" chat and performed two bonus songs, 'Another Place And Time' and a special cover of Ryan Adams' 'Where The Stars Go Blue' . >> Watch it here YouTube are presenting an “In The Round” with US artist James House plus #C2C2014 London pop-up artists Gary Quinn and The Shires plus Luke Thomas & Melanie Greggain
It will take place at The Troubadour in London on 21st July 2014 - See Event Detail

Due to huge demand Striking Matches have confirmed a second date at The Borderline, London Tues, 24 June 2014, visit for details.

** UDATED ** * UK Tour Page  
The ABC of British Country Music Live listings for Artists, Bands & Clubs

Ward Thomas, twin sisters Catherine and Lizzy Ward-Thomas remained on the “B” BBC Radio 2 Playlist for a fourth week commencing April 19, 2014 with their new single “The Good And The Right” (>> Official Video) taken from their "Footnotes" EP which was released on iTunes & Amazon on April 6, 2014. The EP currently resides at No.22 and the single “The Good and the Right” (Radio Edit) at No.94 on the respective UK iTunes Top 1500 charts. The EP is ranked #218 on Amazon UK all genre MP3 Albums.

SUPPORT UK Country Music

"Ward Thomas and The Good and the Right" - Alex Lester (April 14) BBC Playlist Page
"That's Ward Thomas from Hampshire" - Janice Long (April 15) BBC Playlist Page
"It's 8:41 here's Ward Thomas, Oh I love a hoe-down, Ward Thomas The Good and the Right and apparently they're girls and twins, they sound amazing" - Zoe Ball (April 15) BBC Playlist Page
"The Good and the Right, Ward Thomas, sounds like an old actor from the 40's" - Steve Wright (April 15) BBC Playlist Page
"Ward Thomas, The Good and the Right" - Vanessa Feltz (April 16) BBC Playlist Page
"This is Ward Thomas and The Good And The Right" - Alex Lester (April 17) BBC Playlist Page
"Here's Ward Thomas on Radio 2"..."Thoroughly enjoying Ward Thomas" - Zoe Ball (April 17) BBC Playlist Page
Playing "Footnotes (Happy Ending)"-  "Country music from Hampshire...great to know that there's home grown talent pumping this great music at us" - Bob Harris (April 17) BBC Playlist Page


Official UK Top 100 Album Chart (Week Ending April 26, 2014)
Johnny Cash with OUT AMONG THE STARS (Columbia) falls 6-9 with sales of  7,292 copies (Last week’s sales were 10,374 sales; 3-week total 37,013) in its third week at retail.
Emmylou Harris with the re-release of WRECKING BALL (Nonesuch) debuts at No.100 (sales less than 980; these days less than 2000 copies can net you a Top 40 UK album.) Shunned at the time by mainstream country radio and industry this has been a classic since its release in 1995. This expands it into a three-disc collection: the re-mastered original album, a bonus disc of previously unreleased bonus tracks from Harris.

Official UK Country Album Chart (Week Ending April 26, 2014)
Johnny Cash with OUT AMONG THE STARS (Columbia) stays at No.1 for a third week
Emmylou Harris with the re-mastered expanded update of WRECKING BALL jumped up 11 places 13-2
Rodney Crowell with TARPAPER SKY (New West) debuts at No.3 and Marc Ford’s HOLY GHOST lands at No.4
Martina McBride with EVERLASTING (Vinyl Recordings) falls 2-6 in her second week.
Derek Ryan with THE ENTERTAINER LIVE (Sharpe Music) blew in at No.15

On the Hotdisc Chart (April 20, 2014 Chart)  
Jamie O'Neal (making her debut on Hotdisc) moved 2-1 with her cover of the Juice Newton hit "The Sweetest Thing" to top the Hotdisc Top 40.
Ray Scott with his witty "Gotta Quit Drinkin'" climbed 4-2 with Billy Yates hot on its heels with his self penned “As I Kiss My World Goodbye” which made a 5-3 stride.
Last weeks No.1 Bertie Higgins’ "Just Another Day In Paradise" fell 1-4.

The Hayley Oliver Band with “Bright Side Of Life” climbed 6-5 to hold onto the No1 on the British and Irish Hotdisc chart listings for a second week.
Former 2-week chart topper M Callahan with “Chicken On A Chain” slipped by 3-6.
Jeff Griffith with “She’s All I Ever Drink About” stayed at No.7, D K Davis with “Waitin’ On The Weekend” edged up 9-8.
British artist Gary Curtis entered the Top tier with “Crazy Love” as it jumped 11-9.
Advancing up the Top 40 chart and rounding out the Top 10 was Ireland’s Philomena Begley & Ray Lynam’s duet “The Fire Of Two Old Flames” (12-10)
Also moving north on the top 40 were David Starr with “Underneath The Clear Blue Skies” (15-11), Markus Fox (16-12) with “I’m Still Coming Home” (written by Mike Lane and Joe Lickteig), Canada’s Domino with “All We Need Tonight” (18-14) , Moore & Moore with “Show Me Your Country” (co-written with Randal Reed) climbed six rungs 23-17 and fellow US act Joe Allen with “Can’t Take These Things” (written by Brian P Banks) also entered the top 20 with a 24-19 leap.


(22 April 2014) Rachele Lynae - Rachele Lynae (Momentum Label Group)
12 Tracks/ Time: 41:45 MP3 - UK iTunes - Smart Choice Music - 

(28 April 2014) David Pack - Napa Crossroads (Concord)
CD - MP3 'Napa Crossroads' is the brainchild of Grammy award winning, multi-instrumentalist David Pack. It was David's passion for wine that led to this collaboration with five prestigious Napa Valley wineries - Far Niente, Silver Oak, Gargiulo Vinyards, Pride Mountain Vineyards and Casa Piena. Each winery collaborated musically or lyrically on two tracks, with David and guest musicians bringing the total to 14 original compositions - Press Release

(22 April 2014) Keb' Mo' - Bluesamericana (Kind of Blue Music)
10 Tracks/ Time: 38:05 CD - MP3 - Smart Choice Music

  • Christie Lamb's "All She Wrote" stays at No1 on the National Country Tracks Top 30 for a second week. Former No.1 Doug Bruce with "Clock Out At Five" holds at #2 and Sara Storer's "Come On Rain" moves 4-3.
  • Codie Prevost received awards for "Entertainer of the Year" and "Male Vocalist of the Year" giving him both titles for six years running and was also honoured with the 2014 Saskatchewan Country Music Association Achievement Award.
  • One More Girl has a new single "Drunk Heart" at country radio - eblast
  • Snapshot Country Aircheck's Insider Artist News - April 18, 2014 - April 22, 2014
  • Glen Campbell has been moved into a care facility, according to PEOPLE Country. The singer, who has been living with Alzheimer’s for three years, was relocated to the facility just last week.
  • Rachel Potter the Nashville based country artist/ actress/ X Factor USA 2013 contestant has partnered with PledgeMusic to make a new album, “Not So Black and White.
  • NY Times: Losing A Few Hay Bales, Country Music Goes Mainstream: Cumulus announced the debut of the NASH Campus, the nation’s first multimedia facility devoted solely to producing and distributing content based on the Country music lifestyle, including radio programming, TV/videos, magazines and events. The NASH campus includes
    three studios designed for a combination of TV and radio programming, indoor and outdoor event space, a print newsroom and extensive office space. Read More/ Photos at  
Taylor Swift was the first artist to visit the new Nash campus in Nashville. She joined America’s Morning Show hosts Chuck Wicks, Terri Clark, and Blair Garner. Cumulus wants Nash to encompass not only radio but also television, print and online media, and even licensed merchandise like kitchenware and cars. At the Nash headquarters in downtown Nashville, normally drab radio studios have been remade to look like warmly lit television production sets, with high-definition cameras capturing video in preparation for a time when the shows will also be transmitted in multiple formats online. Country Weekly magazine will be re-branded Nash as part of Cumulus Media’s expansion of its country-themed radio brand following a deal with Country Weekly’s publisher, American Media Inc.

  • The Academy of Country Music’s ambitious 50th-anniversary awards celebration is already looking like a major blowout. The April 19, 2015 awards ceremony at the Dallas Cowboys’ home, AT&T Stadium, and the April 17-18 Party for a Cause at the Texas Rangers’ field, Globe Life Park, sold out in a scant 18 minutes. And that’s without announcing talent —returning co-hosts Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan are the only names thus far affiliated with the dates.
  • The morning of April 22nd in the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s Rotunda, the CMA announced the 2014 Hall of Fame inductees. The late, great songwriter Hank Cochran, who died in 2010, will be posthumously inducted in the Songwriter category. Mac Wiseman will be inducted in the Veteran Era category, and Ronnie Milsap in the Modern Era category
Kacey Musgraves with
Katy Perry  CLICK to ENLAGE
  • First lady Michelle Obama and Kellie Pickler will guest star on the May 7 episode of ABC's Nashville as lead character, Rayna Jaymes, organizes a military benefit concert at Fort Campbell. The military-themed event comes after Rayna finds out her current love interest, country star Luke Wheeler, has been injured while in Afghanistan. Nashville's second season finale airs in America May 14.
  • Kacey Musgraves joined Katy Perry for a taping of CMT Crossroads in Los Angeles on April 18. The pair taped the 50th episode of the critically acclaimed series. Among the songs included in the taping are Perry’s “Roar” “Firework,” and “Teenage Dream.” “I’d say she’s the queen of following your arrow,” Musgraves said of Perry before performing her own Country hit, “Follow Your Arrow.”
  • Easton Corbin, Charles Esten, Sam Palladio, Jonathan Jackson, Chris Carmack, The Henningsens, Tracy Lawrence, and more were due to perform at GRAND OLE OPRY Tues April 22nd. See calendar for future events.
  • George Strait, the reigning Entertainer of the Year for both the Academy of Country Music and Country Music Association, is nearing the end of his Cowboy Rides Away Tour that began its final leg in January. The country legend earns his fourth No.1 this year on Billboard’s weekly ranking of Hot Tours with $6.4 million in ticket sales from four of the final six arenas on his performance schedule. Sold out performances in Wichita, Denver, Portland and Tacoma, WA, drew more than 70,000 fans to see the veteran entertainer’s touring sendoff. The overall gross from Cowboy Rides Away now tops $72 million from 40 sold out shows since launching in January of 2013


Baby A on the Way! Lady Antebellum's Dave Haywood, 31, and his wife, Kelli Cashiola, announced via Twitter that they are expecting a baby boy. The couple got married at the Front Porch Farms in Ashland City, Tenn., on April 14, 2012, after announcing their engagement in December 2011, according to People magazine.
Lady Antebellum tweeted @ladyantebellum So excited for a new Baby A on the way in Sept! And it's a boy!!! - Dave & Kelli

Ever since Kelly Clarkson announced she was expecting, glimpses of her baby bump have been rare.  But this past weekend, she was out and about with her pregnant belly definitely on display. US Weekly has photos of Kelly on a boating outing with her husband Brandon Blackstock and his family, including his stepmother, country superstar Reba McEntire. She was wearing black leggings, flip-flops and a long salmon-colored tunic with a black and white bow printed on the belly. Later, she wore a white top which showed off her belly even more.

The Kickstarter for Neil Young's high-end audio device Pono ended bringing in $6,225,354, making it the third-most-funded project in the Kickstarter's history (the others were the Pebble Watch and the Ouya gaming console). The campaign raised 7.7 times more than its original goal of $800,000, with 18,220 people contributing. 15 people donated at the highest level of $5,000, winning a dinner and listening party with Neil Young in Chicago.

Eighty-four percent of all online content consumed in Spain is pirated, according to a study of 2013 Internet trends commissioned by a coalition of music, movie, publishing and videogame companies. The April 9 report, which concluded that more that half of all Internet users in Spain download content illegally, is the latest fuel in the fiery debate over intellectual property legislation in the piracy-plagued country...n 2012, digital music amounted to 34% of total sales in Spain. Although Spotify, Google Play and other services showed initial promise as an alternative to piracy in the Spanish market, digital sales in
Spain grew only 9% compared to the 22% European average, according to last year’s IFPI figures.

Telegraph UK - Many people are buying CDs, vinyl records and cassettes rather than MP3 downloads, even though many albums in these obsolete formats are left in their wrapper and kept as collectors' items. Music fans still prefer to buy CDs, vinyl records and cassettes than MP3 downloads, even though many are left in their wrapper and never actually listened to. Online digital sales have cornered a large part of the music industry, with 22 per cent of people buying from Amazon in the last month and 11 per cent from Apple’s iTunes store. But CDs remain dominant, according to a poll, with 57 per cent of people having bought a physical album during the last year. That figure for MP3 downloads was just 39 per cent.And, strangely, vinyl records are now a growing part of the music industry, with one in ten having bought an LP over the last month, up from five per cent in
the same period last year. One in 20 people had even bought a cassette during that time. This phenomenon is largely being driven by 18 to 24-year-olds who did not grew up with the formats originally, with just over one quarter in that age group admitting to buying music to collect, but not play.


  • Eric Church (EMI Records Nashville) will release a double gatefold vinyl version of his album THE OUTSIDERS on Saturday, April 19, in recognition of National Record Store Day. The vinyl package will also include an exclusive album poster (Source Press Release
  • Radney Foster will release EVERYTHING I SHOULD HAVE SAID, his first album of all new material since 2009s Revival, on May 13 via his own Devil’s River Records and distributed by Think Indie. “I’m always trying to find a little piece of the truth,” says the Texas born and bred singer-songwriter. With Everything I Should Have Said, the truth is laid bare. His first collection of new songs in 5 years opens with “Whose Heart You Wreck,” a stormy lament to a fickle muse and closes with the title track, an unflinching apology for things done and left undone.
  • Cowboy Jack Clement, one of country music’s most eclectic and colorful figures, passed away in 2013 after completing what would be his final musical work. Now fans will have the chance to hear it. Cowboy Jack’s album FOR ONCE AND FOR ALL is set for release July 15 on the new Nashville label I.R.S. Records....Read More at Country Weekly
  • Jessica Clemmons the C2C2014 Pop Up stage artist and Radio 2 artist will release a new single “Love Like That” out May 5th - iTunes UK

  • Joey+Rory were raised on great traditional country songs and still love to sing them. So this May, they have a new album COUNTRY CLASSICS..A Tapestry of Our Musical Heritage coming out with their own versions of twelve classic country songs. Songs like “I’m Not Lisa”, “Rocky Top”, “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue” and many others. This new CD will be exclusively available in Cracker Barrel’s everywhere starting in May. You will also be able to purchase it through Joey+Rory's webstore. See more in the Spring 2014 E-Blast Update
  • Joanna Mosca, is putting the finishing touches on her upcoming not-yet-titled EP, which is being produced by Nashville's hottest production team, New Voice Entertainment. Mosca's new material digs deeper into country music with a definitive lyrical slant. "It was important that it include material strong women could relate to, as well as songs that reflect a sense of humor and fun," she says.
  • All My Friends: Celebrating The Songs & Voice Of Gregg Allman will be available in DVD/ Blue-ray / 2CD/ CDs and the DVD in a regular format on May 6, 2014: This DVD captures a once-in-a-lifetime performance, honoring one of the most acclaimed and beloved icons in rock and roll history. A founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, and successful solo artist in his own right, Allman possesses a voice that has resonated through four decades. Amongst the performances with Country/Americana interest are: Susan Tedeschi, Brantley Gilbert, John Hiatt, Trace Adkins, Vince Gill, Martina McBride, Eric Church, Jackson Browne, Zac Brown, and The Allman Brothers Band with musical direction by Don Was.  Shot in high definition with 5:1 Dolby sound at the historic Fox Theatre in Atlanta, this remarkable piece pays tribute to a voice that once heard is never forgotten. From now until the release date, those that pre-order will receive the 32 page, 2014 Beacon Theatre program - sure to be a collector's item in the future. It’s available at hittinthenote and and in UK it drops on May 19 Amazon UK >> Watch the promo Video
  • Previously unreleased Music from Hank Williams surfaces in The Garden Spot Programs, 1950 Omnivore Recordings will soon release the full-length version of The Garden Spot Programs, 1950, featuring 24 performances, unheard for 64 years, from country music legend Hank Williams. Rescued from obscurity, these shows originally aired more than six decades ago; The Garden Spot Programs, 1950 collects material from the four episodes now known to exist. Due out May 20, 2014, the set follows the release of Omnivore’s collectible 10” vinyl Record Store Day EP sampler.
  • Dolly Parton and Sony Masterworks celebrate Record Store Day on Saturday, April 19, with the release of a limited 7-inch vinyl.  The blue vinyl features two tracks from Parton’s upcoming album Blue Smoke - “Blue Smoke” and “Home.”
  • Girls With Guitars: Katie Armiger, Jamie Lynn Spears and Jordan Anderson rock Ocala, Florida.
  • Bucky Covington is thrilled to release his first single as an independent artist, “Buzzin,” to country radio. “BUZZIN,” the lead single from Bucky’s current project expected out later this year, is the perfect summer-time theme song, written by Brad Hull and produced by Covington himself and Dale Oliver.
  • CMA Entertainer of the Year George Strait’s The Cowboy Rides Away Tour announced the addition of a tour stop on Thursday, June 5 at State Farm Arena in Hidalgo, Texas.
  • Canadian neo-folk favorites The Duhks are back and set to release their long- awaited new studio album BEYOND THE BLUE on June 24. Sample tracks from Beyond the Blue on Soundcloud
CMA Close Up by Bob Doerschuk: Martina McBride Rides Her Soul Train

Billboard (Phyllis Stark): Click to ENLARGE

CMC Review: Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, supported by Tift Merritt Factory Theatre, Marrickville, Sydney 13/04/14

New Single from Johnny Orr Band shines light on Autism...The cut appears on the band’s forthcoming EP Down South, and Orr says he’s planning on promoting the single and the cause in every possible arena he can.  
A Conversation with Jamie O’Neal at Country

Jerrod Niemann – “Donkey” (Lyrics) YES these are the actual Lyrics of Jerrod Niemann's new Single, "Donkey":
All the ladies like to ride, Oh the ladies like to ride, Oh the ladies like to ride, Oh the ladies like my D-O-N-K-E-Y
...Down to the Honky Tonky, Its gonna get funky funky (hee haw hee haw) x2 !!


Julianne Hough attended the Kaleidoscope Ball held at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Thursday (April 10) in Beverly Hills, California.
Keeping it one-note, the actress wore a Philosophy Fall 2014 cut-out dress with a wrap skirt, ensuring her noteworthy satin sandals got equal billing. She accessorized with a matching clutch with gold hardware (image) and a few rings whilst slick hair and makeup perfected her look - Fashion Pic - Getty Images

Taylor Swift left her apartment in New York City (April 16) wearing a Talbots Heart Intarsia Sweater ($59.99), a pair of Hudson Denim Pants ($98.00) in Deep Jade, a pair of Cole Haan Mackenzie Oxfords and carried her J.Mendel Midi Clutch ($1,650, Black) - Image

Miranda Lambert launched her own line of shoes and boots last December with her music and lifestyle serving as the main inspiration. Some of the high heels have a rock and roll edge, while the boots give a nod to Miranda's country roots.
She told Women's Wear Daily that running her boutique, The Pink Pistol, taught her some valuable lessons going into the shoe line launch.
Brett Eldredge and Jana Kramer are taking part in Macy's American Icons campaign, which means you'll see their faces in more than 800 Macy's stores starting next month. They'll be modeling clothes for I.N.C International Concepts in ads appearing in print and online, too

Kacey Musgraves is featured in Elle magazine's Women in Music 2014 issue seen wearing a Roberto Cavalli Knit Gown - Image

Kacey, who's made a name for herself by not skirting around issues in her music, says it saddens her that her material is considered controversial. She tells the mag, “It’s hard for me to swallow when someone says, ‘You’re a rebel, you’re an outlaw,’ because no, I’m not. The things I sing about are not controversial to me."

  • Dolly Parton has revealed Miley Cyrus wanted to "murder" her Hannah Montana persona in order to make people accept her as a more grown-up musician. The country icon admitted she was concerned when he goddaughter told her she was planning a dramatic reinvention to move away from being known as the Disney Channel character which made her famous. Speaking to The Sun newspaper, Dolly said: "As a little girl she was great, but then she started to grow up. And people didn't want her to grow up - they got mad at her. "Well, that's how everyone has been with Miley. One day she'd had enough and told me, 'I need to murder Hannah Montana in order for people to accept who I really am'. Meanwhile Miley Cyrus is upset about having to postpone two more dates of her 'Bangerz' tour in the US after suffering a severe allergic reaction to antibiotics.
  • Hayden Panettiere (aka Juliette Barnes in ABC TV drama Nashville) wants to be a "sexy and youthful" bride. The 24-year-old actress has not yet set a date for her wedding to fiancé Wladimir Klitschko but already knows she wants to look "classy and elegant". She told People: "I would like some really long, loose boho beach waves and just a nice golden tan."I want to be classy and elegant and sophisticated, but I also don't want to forget my age. I want to be comfortable. I want it to be just sexy enough, but youthful at the same time. I don't want to look so done up."
  • They've got the Voice: Talent show contestants Georgia May Harrup a distant cousin of superstar Adele and country singer Talia Smith arrive for the unique interactive event making an appearance at the Harvey Nichols Baileys Feaster Egg Hunt, which saw the popular Knightsbridge store transported to 18th century Versailles as guests participated in an interactive hunt for a Baileys Chocolate Luxe Easter Egg - Image The “Hell on Heels” singer Talia made the most of the current hot pastel trend in a pale pink top (H&M) with fabulous matching wedged suede stilettos, broken up by leather leggings and black-lapelled pastel blazer (H&M).
  • Carolynne Poole the X Factor 2012 final 12 contestant and C2C2014 Pop Up stage artist posted a hot new photo before a trip to America and was currently enjoying the sun in Arizona (Image)

  • Shelley Minson the Tamworth based Aussie Pin Up rockabilly Singer/ Songwriter had fun unleashing her inner Easter Bunny! — with and Gothic Lolita Wigs and Pinup Girl Clothing (Vintage inspired clothing, vintage reproduction dresses, Vintage Inspired Swimwear, retro dresses, retro shoes, retro accessories, retro lingerie, Pinup Couture etc) - Image
  • Don’t Play It Like that Again: Luke "Bro-Country" Bryan's son Bo took black and red sharpies and wrote on every white key of their piano - Image
April 21: The late Ira Louvin (1924; died June 20, 1965 (aged 41)) )
April 22: Cleve Francis (1945), Glen Campbell  (1936), Kellie Coffey (1978) 
April 23: The late Roy Orbison (1936; died December 6, 1988 (aged 52))
April 24: Richard Sterban (Oak Ridge Boys) (1943), Rebecca Lynn Howard (1979) 
April 25: Rob Crosby (1954), Kate Mackenzie (1952)
April 26: Jay DeMarcus (Rascal Flatts) (1971)
April 27: Herb Pedersen (1944), Donna Ulisse  

Country singer Kevin Sharp died on Saturday (April 19, 2014) from past stomach surgeries and digestive issues, his website confirmed. He was 43
Sharp, best known for his hit song “Nobody Knows”, battled with cancer as a teenager in the Nineties. Born in California, December 1970, he spent his younger years appearing in musicals, but after suffering from fatigue and excessive dizziness, he was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma - a form of blood cancer.
Despite being given a slim chance of recovery, he survived – although permanently lost his hair due to the chemotherapy treatment. While still recovering, he met legendary producer David Foster through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Sharp went onto create a demo tape and Foster helped sign him to Asylum Records in Nashville. On Sept 24, 1996 he released his first album, MEASURE OF A MAN (#4 Billboard Country Albums peak), selling over 500,000 copies, while his first single, Nobody Knows, spent four weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot Country Singles and Tracks chart. The second single "She's Sure Taking It Well" (Asylum) written by Tim Buppert, Don Pfrimmer and George Teren, released February 10, 1997 reached #3 on Hot Country Songs
Read an obituary at The Tennessean
Reba McEntire tweeted Prayers go out to Kevin Sharp's family. RIP Kevin.