Sunday, 20 July 2014

Country Bites News snippets July 7 – July 13, 2014

Country Bites News snippets July 7 – July 13, 2014


The Hayley Oliver Band have called it quits and split – See separate Blog Post.

Tours and Gig dates added for: Mike Ward, Nathan Carter, Ward Thomas, Kathryn Anderson, Kelly Lee, Jess Morgan, Star Lane, Danni Nicholls, Gary Quinn, Lucy Ward, Sally Barker, Dougie Maclean and Raymond Froggatt. See Tour Dates Page were broadcasting live from the Americana Festival at a new site at Prestwood Park Airfield nr Loughborough in Leicstershire. The line up (see flyer) included appearances by Joe Brown, Si Cranstoun, George Hamilton IV (USA) & Friends, Toni Wille (Nl), Chas’n'dave, The Country Sisters (CZ), Vince Eager & The Memphis Tones, The Mod All Stars, Bo Walton, T.Rextasy, Quill, Stu Edwards & Gone Country.
The 24/7 Internet station with its slogan "Playing the Hottest Country Music for the UK”, chatted to most of the country music artists performing, as well as keeping an eye on the car and motorbike competitions and the fashion. They broadcast Chas & Dave's headlining set live on Sunday afternoon.
Ward Thomas Graphic - The Americana Festival
with  CLICK to ENLARGE’s CEO Allan Watkiss along with presenter Nutty Norah caught up with twins Ward Thomas (Lizzy & Catherine) who represented the UK at Aristo CMA Global Artist Party in Nashville in 2013 and have been upgraded from the “B” to the “A” playlist with their new single “Push for the Stride”by BBC Radio 2  joining Dolly Parton with “Try” for the week commencing July 12, 2014. Their full debut album FROM WHERE WE STAND (WTW Music Limited) is out July 21st - Amazon UK
Listen to some of their live stage feed performance and their interview:

UK’s newest Country music duo The Shires who were BBC Radio 2 playlisted kick off their UK tour with further dates added: 
Friday 18th July 2014 (Pocklington Arts Centre Market Place, York) July 19th 2014 (Gateshead, Summertyne Festival), Sunday July 20th (Dublin, Upstairs at Whelans), Monday July 21st (Belfast, McHughs), Weds July 23rd (Glasgow, King Tuts Bar),  Thurs 24th July (The Stables Theatre, Wavenden, Milton Keynes) Sat 26th July (The Deaf Institute, Manchester), Sunday July 27th (Ipswich, Jimmy’s Farm Festival), Monday July 28th (London, Water Rats with special guest Gary Quinn) and Wed, 30 July 2014 (The Temple, The Institute, Birmingham) - Ticketmaster UK

Their new T-Shirts (Image) have arrived! Available to purchase on our tour starting from Pocklington
The Pocklington Arts Centre wrote: The groundswell of interest in country music in the UK is now officially unstoppable. But one of the acts helping to make country cooler than ever on this side of the Atlantic aren’t from Tennessee or Texas, they’re from Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire. They look and sound great, and they’re all set to take their country-influenced music to the world. Step forward, The Shires. The duo of Ben Earle and Crissie Rhodes has swiftly become one of the real buzz bands of 2014….

Their new single “Tonight” (Decca Records) was released on 11th July 2014 - Amazon - UK iTunes - Google Store
It received its first play on BBC Radio 2’s Bob Harris show and they performed it on their National TV debut on Weekend on ITV  on July 12th.
For the fashion conscious Crissie Rhodes is wearing “LeAnn” KiBoots (shop) in the cover art. She also owns a pair of  “Janes”

Garth Brooks Rejects Deal To Save Irish Shows
Garth Brooks turned down a deal that would have seen the country music star play his five comeback shows in Dublin.
The singer scrapped all his Irish concerts after local authorities denied permission for two of them. But after tense behind-the-scenes talks, Dublin City Council on Thursday July 10th put forward a compromise which would have seen the five shows go ahead - if two of them were matinees.
But within hours the singer responded by saying two daytime shows "cannot possibly compare" to a five-night straight run.
His publicist Nancy Seltzer said: "To treat 160,000 people differently than all the rest who will be seeing the show the way it was meant and created is wrong. "He does not understand why it is once again put upon him to treat people less than they deserve to be treated and he still returns to why did they allow five shows to be sold and all these people to be disappointed.
"It is not his decision; it is, with the greatest of respect, the city council's."

Concert promoters, Aiken Promotions, also issued a brief statement stating the option of matinees on Saturday and Sunday was not feasible. Earlier, Brooks, 52, offered to "swim, fly or crawl" to Ireland for a meeting with premier Enda Kenny to try and let the five shows go ahead. "We're still under a cloud but I hope joy is coming," he said in a press conference streamed online from Nashville, Tennessee. "I will do whatever it takes except cancelling on people. If the Prime Minister himself wants me to, I will crawl, swim of fly over this weekend and sit on my knees and beg."
Garth addresses Ireland >> video check out the conference live Blog at
(10 July) Irish Related Post: Residents agree deal to allow the five Garth Brooks concerts to go ahead at Croke Park

Brooks writes in a letter to promoter Peter Aiken published in the Irish Independent. "If you think that for any reason that the ‘powers that be’ in Ireland can fix this, then I will faithfully go to the last second."  Read Brooks' full letter here.
Irish Eyes Aren't Smiling:
Team Brooks can't get Taoiseach on phone during a busy day - See more at:
"We have tried to reach out but his immediate camp has not heard anything back yet," said a source close to Brooks. It is understood an email was sent to Mr Kenny in the hope of getting an agreement to allow the five cancelled concerts to take place later this month. However it seemed there had been little movement. "We believe he has a lot on his plate today forming a new government," added the source!

Does Pete Kennedy have “Friends in High Places”!

Irish premier Enda Kenny also received a mobile phone call from Irish country singer songwriter Pete Kennedy (no relation to John F.) who is based in Nashville. "I received a very warm reception and I phoned them and explained in detail to them the scale of the situation, and they listened, basically," said Kennedy. "And I asked them to please do everything they possibly can in the interest of our national reputation," he added.
As an “award-winning” country musician based in Nashville, Pete said he felt a responsibility to personally phone the Taoiseach. "In the interest of the Irish music industry and the economy and for us to be able to show the world that we are open, willing and able to facilitate any major event and to be welcoming, I felt a responsibility to call An Taoiseach," Mr Kennedy said.
It is understood that after Mr Kennedy rang Mr Kenny's personal mobile, he then received a phone call from the Taoiseach's private secretary, the conversation lasted about 15 minutes.
Mr Kennedy also attempted to make contact with the newly appointed Minister for Arts, Heather Humphries, but he was unsuccessful.

About: Pete Kennedy, the Birr, County Offaly, Republic of Ireland native is a 2 time BRITISH Country Music Award recipient. The 2013 Album of the Year winner who is managed by Lee Williams (the CEO of CMR Nashville and on the committee of the British Country Music Awards) released his latest album, I AM THE ONE on US iTunes in America back on May 6, 2014 as “an introduction to” in "New and Noteworthy" category which he described as a career highlight. The 13 Track album includes all the tracks (apart from “Until the Lights Go Out”) from 2 previously released EP’s “The Nashville Sessions Vol.1 & Vol. 2” which gained back-to-back UK “Album of the Year” honours at the British Country Music Awards (BCMAwards). Neither of the two EP’s have troubled the iTunes UK Top 1500 Country Albums list and are currently ranked at #431,108 and #503,068 in Music respectively on Amazon UK . Kennedy a towering Irish heartthrob earned his first Hotdisc British & Irish No.1 after six attempts when “Love Like That” reigned for 3 weeks from the chart week Oct 13, 2013 and peaked at No.3 on the Top 40.
  • Ireland shows definitely off, says a 'crushed' Brooks: Five Garth Brooks concerts planned for later this month at Croke Park are definitely off. After learning that Dublin's city council could not change its ruling denying permits for two of the five shows, which were to run from July 25-29, Brooks issued a statement saying Ticketmaster would begin refunds for the 400,000 purchased tickets - "I just received the news the Dublin City Council cannot change their earlier ruling to not allow the licenses for all five shows," Brooks said in a written statement. "To say I am crushed is an understatement. All I see is my mother's face and I hear her voice. She always said things happen for a reason and for the right reason”. Read Garth Brooks' statement in its entirety: USA Today
  • Ticketmaster has brought in extra staff to handle the unprecedentedly large refund process, beginning Monday (7/14), which is expected to incur a significant cost. More on the refunds here
  • Hitler Reacts to Garth Brooks' Cancelled Gigs (an adaption of a clip from "Downfall" (Der Untergang) (2004) with Swiss actor Bruno Ganz as Adolf Hitler in is final days >> YouTube

''2Country Radio presents In The Round'' takes place on Monday 21st July 2014 at 8:00 PM - 11:55 PM (Tickets £10 on the door) at The Troubadour; 263-7 Old Brompton Road; London (SW5 9JA) Tel. +44 207 370 1434
A Nashville style songwriter evening with Grammy & CMA Nominee, James House, BCMA song of the year winner, Gary Quinn and BCMA Horizon Act of the year, Luke & Mel. James House, Gary Quinn, Luke & Mel and Lucy May.
Tickets £10 on the door, £11 adv Event Detail - Directions

London country-pop artist Lucy May be singing and talking about her songs at The Troubadour on 21st July.
Aptly during May she had a “amazing month” spending a week in Nashville writing with song writer Jeff Cohen (the man behind some of the hits for The Band Perry and Sugarland) and finished her album and also got to sing in the famous Bluebird Café (pictured with UK duo Ward Thomas) which was a dream come true for her. 
On her return she then went on tour with Michael Bolton (photo) for 3 weeks across the UK and Ireland including The Royal Albert Hall! – “I literally feel like I’ve been in a dream and someone needs to pinch me!! I’ve loved every minute of it”!
Lucy who was described as “The UK's newest country star" by Sir Terry Wogan" released her debut single 'Paper Heart' (Lola Records – UK iTunes >> Video) back on Jan 13, 2013. It was added to the BBC Radio 2 “C” playlist between Dec 8, 2012 to Jan 12, 2013 joining Lady Antebellum’s “On This Winter's Night”
'Paper Heart' with its catchy hook and the lyrics first made the airwaves when it was released by the American country duo Stealing Angels (which includes Jennifer Wayne, the Granddaughter of John Wayne, and Tayla Lynn the granddaughter of Loretta Lynn). It was produced by Greg Fitzgerald (Kylie, Madonna, Hall & Oates, and Jessica Simpson)
Lucy said she “admires people like Adele, Beyonce, Taylor Swift and Dusty Springfield, true artists that have worked hard."
CONNECT with Lucy: Website - Facebook


Official UK Top 100 Singles Chart (Week Ending July 19, 2014)
Dolly Parton The Queen of Country who dazzled at Glastonbury saw her best-loved song “Jolene” (RCA) fall 52-96 in the songs 17th week on the chart.

Official UK Top 100 Album Chart (Week Ending July 19, 2014)
Dolly Parton with BLUE SMOKE / THE BEST OF (Masterworks) climbed 4-3 selling 18,568 copies (down 34% on the previous weeks 28,256 copies) in her fifth week with a tally of  95,629. A fortnight after her show stopping Glastonbury performance Dolly has reached another career “mountain high” with her highest charting UK album of the US superstar’s career just two places short of the summit.  
THE VERY BEST OF Dolly Parton (a Sony/BMG 2007 compilation) fell 41-76 (sales around 1,000 copies) in this sets now 82nd chart frame.

Official UK Country Album Chart (Week Ending July 19, 2014)
Kacey Musgraves who has been on tour in the UK saw SAME TRAILER DIFFERENT PARK (Decca) return to the top of the chart in her 65th chart frame.
Johnny Cash with OUT AMONG THE STARS (Columbia) slipped 2-1 after enjoying 14 weeks at No.1.
The Old Crow Medicine Show with REMEDY (ATO) moved 2-3 in their second week.
Willie Nelson with BAND OF BROTHERS held at NO.4 in his fourth week
Miranda Lambert with PLATINUM (RCA) remained at No.6 in her sixth week.
Dolly Parton’s standard new bluegrass BLUE SMOKE (Masterworks) falls off the top 20 from last weeks No.7

UK iTunes Top 1500 Country Albums  (Last updated July 16, 2014)

Dolly Parton’s album BLUE SMOKE/ THE BEST OF  pairing remains at the peak of the summit with THE VERY BEST OF holding firm at No.3.
The new Sony compilation American Heartland: Legends of Country stays at No.2 following TV and now UK country radio promotion.   
The ABC TV series Nashville soundtracks are attracting attention with The Music of Nashville: Original Soundtrack Season 2, Vol. 2 holding at #4 with the Original Soundtrack Season 2, Vol.1 moving 6-8.
Kacey Musgraves with SAME TRAILER DIFFERENT PARK holds at #5.
The highest charting UK act is Ward Thomas leap up 33-5 with their soon be released debut album FROM WHERE WE STAND.
The Irish contingent is led by Nathan Carter with WAGON WHEEL as it rebounds #91-48.
Miranda Lambert with PLATINUM the current No1 country album in America falls 12-25

1 Dolly Parton - Blue Smoke/ The Best Of 
2 Various Artists - American Heartland: Legends of Country 
3 Dolly Parton - The Very Best of Dolly Parton 
4 Various Artists - The Music of Nashville: Original Soundtrack Season 2, Vol. 2 (Deluxe) 
5 Kacey Musgraves - Same Trailer Different Park 
6 Johnny Cash - The Man Comes Around 
7 Lady Antebellum - Need You Now 
8 Various Artists - The Music of Nashville - Season 1, Vol. 2 (Original Soundtrack) 
9 Ward Thomas - From Where We Stand 
10 Various Artists The No.1 Country Hits Collection – 100 Greatest Country Hits

UK iTunes Top 1500 Country Singles  (Last updated July 16, 2014)
Queen of Country Dolly Parton continues to dominate the Top 20 with 8 songs (retro hits + “Try” BBC Radio 2 “A” playlisted)
As the season 2 Nashville TV drama ends on More 4 the stars post 4 tracks with Hayden Panettiere’s “Don’t Put Dirt On My Grave Just Yet” the highest falling 7-12.
Ward Thomas with their new BBC Radio 2 now “A” playlisted single “Push For the Stride” moved 45-5 from the album FROM WHERE WE STAND which drops on July 21st (iTunes) . Their UK Radio 2 pals The Shires appear at No.9 with “Tonight” (Decca) released on July 11, 2014 on UK iTunes.
Taylor Swift’s Pop/country songs still continue to make a showing with 4 tracks from the 22-year old starlet.

1 Dolly Parton - Jolene 
2 Dolly Parton - 9 To 5 
3 Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers - Islands In the Stream 
4 Dolly Parton - Try 
5 Ward Thomas - Push For the Stride 
6 Lady Antebellum - Need You Now 
7 Taylor Swift - I Knew You Were Trouble. 
8 Dolly Parton - Jolene (Single Version) 
9 The Shires - Tonight 
10 Taylor Swift - Love Story 
11 Dolly Parton - Blue Smoke 
12 Hayden Panettiere - Don't Put Dirt On My Grave Just Yet 
13 Nashville Cast - It Ain't Yours To Throw Away (feat. Clare Bowen & Sam Palladio
14 Jace Everett - Bad Things 
15 Nashville Cast - Black Roses (feat. Clare Bowen) [Full Band Version
16 Dolly Parton - 9 To 5 
17 Taylor Swift - We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together 
18 Lennon Stella & Maisy Stella - Ho Hey 
19 Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers - Islands in the Stream 
20 Taylor Swift - Everything Has Changed (feat. Ed Sheeran)

On the Hotdisc Chart (July 13, 2014 Chart)  

With new tracks from the July 2014 #187 promotional Hotdisc impacting the chart saw a brand new No.1 at the top of the Hotdisc Top 40 chart with a new entry from US bluegrass brother and sister duo The Roys (Elaine & Lee Roy) blowing in at the summit with "No More Lonely" (co-written with Steve Dean). They last topped the chart when “Coal Minin' Man” held at 2 weeks back in
Feb 13, 2011. Their other singles were: “Trail Blazer” (HD161 peaked a #5) , “Still Standing” (HD165 peaked at #2) and “Gypsy Runaway Train” (HD173 peaked at #4 in June 2013)
The Roys were one slot ahead of the surprise hit by Jim Reeves to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his death. "Distant Drums " (2014) written by Cindy Walker, with its brand new backing made a bow at No.2. with the traditionalist biased Hotdisc radio DJs and purist pundits rating it highly.
Sawyer Brown slipped back 1-3 after opening 3-weeks at No.1 with "Walk Out Of The Rain".
Other new entries in the upper top 10 tier were US acts Cory Cox with “Wake Up Drunk” (co-written with Joel Brentlinger; >> Watch live performance) arriving at No.6 and Bertie Higgins with his self penned “Cowboys Of The Caribbean” making a No.7 bow.
Five new tracks made the top 20:
4 were US acts Gracia Harrison with “Jezebel” (written by Beverly Hensley) made a No.14 debut, singer-songwriter James House (on tour in the UK) arrived at No.15 with “Train Wreck” (co-written with Adam Ekerdsley) following on from the first single “Every Time It Rains” from his album BROKEN GLASS TWISTED STEEL which peaked at No.11. Southern artist Brian Collins made his Hotdisc debut at No.16 with his great new self penned single “Never Really Left” drawn from his impressive Kickstarter crowd funded album HEALING HIGHWAY. The attractive SaraBeth who will be visiting UK shores later in the year saw her single "That's The Sound" (>> Video written by Marty Dodson, Laurie Killian and Dean Sams) land at No.19.
Britain’s Tony Clark blew in at No.18 with his self composed “Put That Country Song On” which is the follow up to his British & Irish Hotdisc No.1 which reached No12 on the top 40 with “You & Me”. It was not enough to dislodge Mim Grey’s soulful “The Ways Of Love” which fell 8-13 but enjoyed a second week at No.1 on the British standings.

Of note:
New to me Holly May who has a premier cut on the new promo disc made her debut at No.39 on the top 40 with "Go Big Or Go Home" (written by Una & Enoch Jensen; >> watch the video) The pretty Holly (photo) has had her single pick up by CMR Nashville (Europe’s #1 Country radio station) and has also been invited to the British Country Music Awards celebration to perform in November which is to co-inside with a European tour! Her 5 track EP was released on April 30, 2014 (Royalz Media / Enjen Productions) available on UK iTunes with possibly the standout being "I've Been On The Run". The newbie country/pop “starlet” hails from Charlemont, MA a mountain and farming town deep in the foothills of the Berkshire Mountain range and enjoys the mudlife whilst mudding through the woods on her four wheeler! “Go Big or Go Home” became the corner stone theme behind her team’s vision. It tied together, not only her musical tone, but also the underlying attitude and direction of the recording process. Follow her on Twitter

Hotdisc welcomes another new name as Aussie David Hilgenfeldt (Facebook Page) whose self penned single “Silver Mine” (>> Watch video) , produced by Stacy Hogan, made a No.30 entry. The single is being promoted by Lee Williams’ Django Promotions (CMR Nashville ™ & CMR Hot ™ are trading names). The promoter and CMA International Broadcaster of the Year for 2013 is pushing for the promo disc lead off track “Catchin' Fireflies” (co-written with Karen Staley) for the lovely Somerset, New Jersey native Madeline Smith. Her latest single entered at No.27 following on from her “State Of Mind” Hotdisc HD177 track which peaked at No.16. Both singles come from self titled 10 track album released 12th July 2013 available on UK iTunes

CMR Nashville favourite Ace Diamond fell 10-11 with “Baddest Gunslingin’ Man” as he shoots to attempt to top his #9 peak with former single “Rockabilly Man”. Check out his European Hotdisc Chart History 2011 - 2014

See if you agree or disagree with how the Hotdisc DJ’s and industry folks are rating the latest Hotdisc 187 singles by checking out this Spotify playlist:


(13 May 2014) Hannah Aldridge – Razor Wire (Trodden Black Entertainment)
12 tracks/ Time: 50:44 MP3 UK iTunes

(15 July 2014) Jack Clement - For Once & For All
Six months before Clement died last August, the producer, singer, songwriter and original Nashville hipster recorded his final full-length, For Once and for All, a collection of a dozen Clement tunes that illustrate his ability to write spare, catchy country-folk-pop songs.

(15 July 2014) Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver - Open Carefully: Message Inside [Import]
11 Tracks/ Time: 33:28  Christian/ Bluegrass/ Country/ Gospel
CD - MP3 - UK iTunes - 
(15 July 2014) Denver - Rowdy Love (Mama Bird Recording Co.)
11 Tracks/ Time: 44:02  Alt-Country & Americana
CD (Aug 4) - MP3 - UK iTunes - - Spotify

Lee Ann Womack and award-winning musician Jerry Douglas have been tapped to co-host the 25th Annual International Bluegrass Music Awards, Oct. 2, in Raleigh, N.C. The awards are the most prestigious in the bluegrass field and honor the year’s outstanding talent as well as new Hall of Fame inductees.

Keith Urban just wrapped a run of shows in Australia, but fans Down Under can still see him perform virtually. Keith has partnered with ANZ Bank to present a hologram of himself performing his latest single, "Somewhere in My Car."
Keith tells ABC News Radio with a laugh, "Somewhere in my hologram, right?" Fans can actually perform the song onstage with Keith as the hologram travels from city to city over the next few weeks. Keith sees the hologram as an interesting way to stay connected to fans.

Codie Prevost was abducted by an army of large hairy beasts and forced to play songs in the wilderness. At least that is what happened in his shiny new >> "All Kinds of Crazy" music video. "This was one of the most memorable video shoots I have ever been on," exclaimed Prevost. "I ordered the costumes from the USA about a week before filming and had them shipped to my house. Thankfully they arrived on time and were the perfect size for the band."

Calgary Sun What happens in Vegas … doesn’t always stay in Vegas……Making a quick two-day and two-night Calgary Stampede detour from her two-year residency at Caesar’s Palace in Sin City, Shania Twain thrilled a capacity crowd during the first of two sold-out concerts at the Scotiabank Saddledome. As the blistering sun hammered down on 17,000 Bryan Adams fans just up the street at Fort Calgary (that makes two Canadian icons in our city on the same night), there was a party of a different — but no less rowdy — kind at the Dome during what was surely the entertainment peak of the 2014 Calgary Stampede.....After making a grand horseback entrance, and wearing a Mountie uniform (for real)....Despite the horseback gag, a 13-piece band and one giant video screen in the middle of the stage, the production and “show” value was nowhere near where it needed to be for a concert of this magnitude and ticket price…..

Following her Calgary performances, Shania Twain will return to the Las Vegas stage for her critically-acclaimed residency show, SHANIA:  STILL THE ONE at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on Saturday, July 12, 2014.  For a full list of her July Vegas dates click HERE.


Country Aircheck's Insider Artist News:
July 11, 2014 Garth Brooks (Party On?), Blake Shelton, Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood, Craig Morgan
July 15, 2014: Miranda Lambert (live), Irish Eyes Aren't Smiling (Garth Brooks), Little Big Town (album date)
July 18, 2014: Kenny Chesney, Garth Brooks (first world date), Tim McGraw

Country superstar Garth Brooks has announced he will be releasing a brand-new record and embarking on a world tour in a press conference in Nashville. Brooks was pretty cagey with the details on the record and tour, but did explain that he'd signed with Sony Music's RCA Records, who will distribute and promote his yet, untitled record, with a release date planned for around November.
The massive star of the '90s said his new music wouldn't be in line with the popular country dominating the airwaves of today, and would be more in line with his own style. "If you had to put it in a box for me, [it'd be] 'Garth Music,'" Brooks said, before adding that this new music would retain some of the more traditional subject matters of country music with, ""You're damn straight we'll do cowboys songs on this album."
Brooks also announced that his music will finally be made available digitally, but like all the facets of his career, he'll be doing it by his terms and selling the downloads via his website, rather than via an online retailer like iTunes.
Brooks said that up to now, he had "never allowed" his music to go digital. That is because he disagrees with iTunes policy that allows for individual tracks to be bought from albums. Brooks wanted iTunes to sell his music only in album form, but iTunes head honcho Eddy Cue wouldn't back down on the company policy of allowing individual track sales. In fact, he didn't back down when the Beatles finally decided to go digital, so he held firm with Brooks too.
Although Brooks didn't get into any of his interaction with iTunes, he said, "We will do our digital the only way we can. Digital will be handled at"
He said the music would be available digitally "in the next few weeks." He also said that, while he is not giving away his music, his entire catalog would be available "at a stupid price."

The world tour Brooks has planned had its first date announced on Monday July 14th. "Our job is to go out there and fly the flag for country music," Brooks said, before adding that the scale of the tour production will be huge. "I've seen the world tour stage. It's phenomenal."
Brooks announce the first stop to a man in Georgia named Andy Roberts. Andy went to see Garth in Las Vegas in January and asked the singer during the show's Q&A session where he would kick off his world tour. Garth joked that the Vegas shows were the first stop on the world tour, but Andy wasn't happy with that answer. Seeing the disappointment on the guy's face, Garth told Andy to leave his name and number with the show's staff. During his live-streamed press conference Thursday July 10th , Garth told reporters he'll call Andy Monday and tell him where the trek is launching.  Garth says, "What Andy chooses to do with that information is up to him."
A shocked Roberts hearing Garth mention his name during the press conference reactivated the Twitter account for his commercial janitorial company, @TFMAndy, and planned to use it to reveal the tour city on Monday. Andy is President of TurnKey Facility Maintenance a full-service facility maintenance company specializing in nightly cleaning, day porter services, floor treatments Atlanta, Georgia
As promised, Garth called Roberts who then called CMT News correspondent Alison Bonaguro and others to talk about the conversation. So as of right now, here's what we know about Brooks' comeback tour: It will kick off in Chicago. That's all Roberts got out of him in a 10-minute phone conversation. So she asked Roberts if they didn't talk venues and dates, what did they talk about? "He just said, 'Hey, buddy, this is Garth. I know we haven't talked in a while.' Then he told me how excited he was to do this, and I told him how much I appreciate being part of it,"
Garth Brooks will open his comeback world tour at Allstate Arena in Chicago Sept. 4 with Trisha Yearwood.
Tickets go on sale next Friday (25th July) at 10am through Ticketmaster with a limit of six per person at $65.50 each.

Andy Roberts tweeted @TFMAndy Chi-town!!! #AndyfromAtlanta

Taylor Swift filmed her role in the movie The Giver quite some time ago, but she recently go to see the finished product -- and boy, did she like it. "Just saw a screening of The Giver. Honestly, I can't believe I got to be a part of something so poignant and beautiful. My head is spinning," she tweeted. 
As previously reported, Taylor plays the small but crucial role of Rosemary in the movie, based on the popular 1993 young adult novel of the same name.  Her co-stars include Jeff Bridges and Meryl Streep. You'll be able to see Taylor walk the red carpet at the premiere of the movie on August 11
The Giver hits movie theaters next month, finally giving fans the chance to see Taylor Swift in her role as Rosemary. The book’s author, Lois Lowry, has revealed details to MTV about Swift’s role in the film. “The role in the movie is still a small role,” Lowry said. “But it’s a crucial and very important one.”

The Band Perry headlined an event to celebrate the delivery of Air New Zealand's first ever Boeing Dreamliner at the plant near Seattle. Their performance took place next to the giant airliner which I hear is made of carbon fiber, making it 20 percent more fuel-efficient than aluminum planes.


According to Pollstar, George Strait has the highest-grossing tour in North America so far this year with $61.8 million coming in for 26 dates on his final trek, The Cowboy Rides Away.

Brantley Gilbert's latest album, JUST AS I AM, has been certified gold for sales of 500,000 copies. The news comes as Brantley announces the second leg of his LET IT RIDE tour, starting September 19 with special guests Tyler Farr and Aaron Lewis on select dates. Newcomer Chase Bryant will open all shows.

On July 11 Ashley Monroe cancelled some upcoming shows due to a severe kidney infection. She was discharged from the hospital (July 13th) having been treated and reported, "I'm finally feeling some relief after spending two nights in the hospital.  I'm very grateful to everyone for their prayers and understanding.

Master songsmiths Paul Craft, Tom Douglas, Gretchen Peters and John Anderson are the latest inductees into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. Songwriters Hall of Famer Pat Alger, who chairs the Hall of Fame’s Board of Directors, announced the new class of inductees Tuesday July 8th in the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame’s physical space at Music City Center.
The four will be officially inducted during the 44th Anniversary Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony on Sunday, Oct. 5 at Music City Center.

Sarah Darling was essentially voted off of Rising Star on Sunday (July 13), but her consolation prize wasn’t all bad. She's going to play the Grand Ole Opry with Brad Paisley on July 18.
Sunday night's show was the start of the duels, meaning that the 20 contestants who have won on the show so far have to go head-to-head in mini competitions. As host Josh Groban said, they have to "win or go home" and "face the wall and each other."
But other than that, there was no pressure at all. Darling was up against Megan Tibbits, who isn't country but does have one of those sweet soft voices like Darling's. She also plays about as many instruments as Hunter Hayes. After her performance, Paisley was impressed by Tibbits' command of her instruments.
But he was also impressed with Darling's cover of Lee Ann Womack's "I Hope You Dance." He voted yes, and Darling was very close to beating her competition's score, but she just didn't get there. "Well, it's difficult on a show like this -- with a style that you have -- for you to project the way that it does when somebody's more of a gymnast vocally," Paisley told Darling. "But I thought what you did, you did really, really well."
Then he told her, "Why don't you come to the Opry, and we'll welcome you home."
He even tweeted the invitation, making it official: "So I meant it @Sarahdarling -- come to the @Opry friday night and let us welcome you home to Nashville."
"So I'm a little disappointed about tonight but really looking forward to playing the Grand Ole Opry with @BradPaisley on Friday," she replied, adding that God has something amazing planned for her.

Justin Moore and wife Kate welcomed a new baby into their family on Monday (July 14), and for the third time, they heard “It’s a girl!” when the bundle of joy was born. “We’re very excited to welcome Rebecca Klein Moore into the world. Both Mom and Klein are healthy,” the Moores say in a statement to People. The baby, who is named after her paternal great-grandmother, will be called by her middle name. Klein weighed in at 6 lbs., 13 oz. at birth and was 19 and a quarter inches long. The sweet baby joins big sisters Kennedy Faye, 2.5, and Ella Kole, 4.

It looks as though Mario Gotze is not the only German star getting all the attention this morning as his girlfriend, Ann-Kathrin Brommel (Selfie Image - Image - Image) has been making headlines this morning, too. Brommel stole her boyfriend's spotlight after sharing a kiss with her goal-scoring boyfriend on the pitch during the World Cup final in Brazil on Sunday.
Goetze and Brommel have been dating for two years, with the couple first making headlines during a trip to Ibiza together in 2012. Brommel has previously appeared in a number of modeling campaigns and was even featured in Heidi Klum's reality show, Germany's Next Top Model. She has a contract with German agency Rockstar Models along with IMM Models as well.
Along with her blogging and modeling career, the German beauty is also an aspiring pop singer who plays the piano and has been attending vocal lessons for three years now. She released her first single, “This Is Me”, in 2010 and her second song, “Body Language”, in 2011. The new star had been supporting her boyfriend all throughout the World Cup tournament by traveling by his side while in Brazil and has even made Elle Magazine's hottest international soccer wives and girlfriends list.
My Super Mario! Read more: Daily Mail

To commemorate Germany's win, Beats commissioned fashion photographer Rankin to create a celebratory salute to the victory starring the Gold Beats Pro headphones and Naomi Campbell, titled 'Golden'. The new work see's Naomi as the World Cup trophy adorned in gold high fashion and sporting the Gold Beats Pros. This >> behind the look includes an interview and a special message from Naomi for the winners.

On 16th July TuneCore announced it paid out $33.2 million in digital music royalties in the second quarter, up 18.4% from the same period in 2013 but down from $34.1 million in the first quarter. Earnings from its music publishing division were up 300% year over year but were not specified in the news release. Its current numbers give TuneCore digital royalties a run rate of roughly $125 million. To put that number in perspective, RIAA members – TuneCore is one of them -- will generate digital sales of roughly $4.3 billion in 2014, according to Billboard estimates. TuneCore is a digital distributor and music publishing administer for independent artists. It distributes recordings to a litany of digital music services, such as iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and Rhapsody.
Its music publishing administration division collects publishing royalties from digital services and also handles requests for synchronization

LeAnn Rimes will launch ONE CHRISTMAS, a holiday tour that kicks off Dec. 5 in Rutland, VT and runs through Dec. 19. She'll also self-release a six-song Christmas EP, One Christmas – chapter 1, the first of three to be released over consecutive holiday seasons.

“ONE Christmas - chapter 2” will be released in 2015 with “ONE Christmas – chapter 3” in 2016.

The six song EP is produced by Rimes and Darrell Brown and includes songs:
Silent Night, Holy Night, I Want A Hippopotamus for Christmas, Blue Christmas, Someday at Christmas, Hard Candy Christmas and White Christmas. >> Watch the promo video


  • Sounds Like Nashville: Get your Nashville fix! New music, videos and tours! Newsletter
  • Chuck Wicks and Tracy Lawrence will join Craig Morgan onstage as he hosts his 8th annual charity event, benefitting the Dickson County Craig Morgan Foundation. 
  • Garth Brooks will release his first album of all-new material in more than a decade under a new agreement with Sony Music, it was announced Thurs July 10th by Brooks and Sony Music Entertainment CEO Doug Morris at a press conference in Nashville.
  • Aaron Lewis is joining Brantley Gilbert on the second leg of the LET IT RIDE TOUR
  • Blake Shelton announced as First Headliner for 2015 Kicker Country Stampede Festival Set for June 25–28, 2015
  • Irene Kelly - Summer’s here in full swing - Newsletter
  • Dolly Parton's Blue Smoke / The Best Of Album Jumps to #3 in it's Fifth Week On Official UK Chart; Glastonbury's "Doggy Parton" reunited with Original Owners.
  • Bluegrass Group Nu-Blu joined by Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Sam Moore for his first Bluegrass recording on "Jesus & Jones"
  • Kenny Chesney revealed his BIG REVIVAL album cover artwork which arrives in stores and online September 23.
  • Shot by emergent photographer Allister Ann, the image was revealed this morning by The Hollywood Reporter ( and, the cover suggests that within what we know, there are places we still haven’t imagined. All we have to do is look a little closer, then get ready – as the title suggests – for the Big Revival within us.
  • Hunter Hayes revealed the release date for his "Tattoo" music video
  • American Songwriter: Behind the lyric "Ruby,Don't Take Your Love To Town" (by Kenny Rogers)
  • Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out will headline the Musicians Against Childhood Cancer festival (MACC) on Friday, July 18th with a special concert that includes performances with Alternative Strings, an orchestra comprised of students grades 8-12 from the Centerville, Ohio school system.
  • Kenny Chesney takes over the Flora-Bama; No Shoes Nation will unite for Flora-Bama-Jama August 16 show
  • Maggie Rose wants to be the “Girl In Your Truck Song
  • Florida Georgia Line ploughs to the top with “Dirt” (182,929 tracks sold in the first week)
American Songwriter Makin’ Stuff Up: The Gold Rush….Pre-Garth, country records seldom exceeded Gold status. Thanks to the manic man from Oklahoma, Platinum – often, many times over – was becoming a reasonable expectation for Randy Travis, Reba McEntire, George Strait, Tanya Tucker, Brooks and Dunn, Joe Diffie, Patty Loveless, etc. Then a cat named McGraw showed up. Whoa, Nelly! Most of these acts were crankin’ out an album every year. And, as they all needed material, pretty much any dude or dudette with a six-string, a Mel Bay chord book, and/or a rhyming dictionary was a candidate for a staff writing deal…..


Lee Williams of CMR NASHVILLE ("Europe's #1 Country Music Radio Station") grabbed a quck interview  interview with Country Rock Kalispell, Montana native and Nashville based Kayla Adams during the CMA 2014 Festival in Nashville.
She talks about her new single “Sober & Sorry” (SSM Entertainment) which was made available to radio via promo disc CDX 597 (Track 5) and digitally via Play MPE. The track (>> lyric video) which features the razor sharp electric guitar of JT Corenflos is described as a Rock-tinged, straight-shootin’ Country girl’s answer to good love gone bad. It was written by Adams, Billy Atherholt (Montgomery Gentry, Chris Daughtry) and Pete Nanney (Chris Daughtry) telling a tale of a woman wronged and vengeance sought. Kayla performed the song for an enthralled crowd at Renegade Radio Nashville All-Star 3rd Anniversary Party during CMA Music Fest Week. 

The newcomer, a stunning blond, blue-eyed 24-year-old beauty, is an avid outdoorswoman whose thought-provoking songwriting is as melodic as it is memorable, Kayla draws inspiration for her songs from the wide open spaces of her Montana farm raising. She has already appeared on stage as a band member and solo performer – in her home state and throughout the U.S.  To date, Kayla has shared the stage with acts as diverse as Kellie Pickler, Rodney Atkins, LL Cool J, Heidi Newfield, and Smashmouth. 

 A self-proclaimed computer geek, she has attended both Belmont University (Nashville) and the famed Musicians Institute College of Contemporary Music (Hollywood).
"This girl is not sitting around hoping the phone will ring. She's all about making things happen, even if it means driving hundreds of miles on her own and living out of a camper... She's got talent, tenacity, and the courage to get out in the world and take chances. She's got the heart of a gypsy, and the voice of a star." Andrea Blair - Montana Woman Magazine
>> Listen to the Interview:

CONNECT with Kayla: Facebook - Reverbnation

(July 15) Even though Lucy Hale is perhaps best known for her acting, she says that music is her No. 1 love. And because she wants to be an artist who is taken seriously, she’s working hard. In a recent chat at a Nashville studio, Hale opened up about that that along with her Opry debut, her feelings for Martina McBride and more....Read More: Lucy Hale Talks New Single, the Opry, Martina McBride + More Taste Of Country

Maverick Magazine (July/ August 2014 issue; Miranda Lambert feature) use the "+" and "-" selections to zoom in and out and view the individual pages at Read the 2 page Holly Williams feature, Steven Seagal (Blues Man feaute), Nickel Creek (sample page) at

a) Ask The Artist Lucy Scholl: It's really interesting yet exciting to be an artist in todays music industry. The focus switch to singles instead of full albums has been a monumental change for existing artists and new artists coming into the industry. I think that releasing a series of singles instead of a full album makes music more accesable to the listener and allows people to connect with the musican more often. When artists release albums, it occurs every couple of years.
By releasing singles, the artist can release new music often and the listener can fall in love with their music one song at a time"
b) Liz Mace [Megan & Liz] It's a weird phenomenon that singles now determine it all. But it's also a challenge. To be an artist and have a single wrap you up in 3:30 minutes, you better be damn sure of who you are and what you want to say. So I say, gotta like the single? Challenge accepted. But if you want tp know my soul, what breaks me and what makes me get up in the morning? Buy the album.  
Aubrey Peeples (Layla Grant on the hit ABC drama Nashville) She says that her love of the country genre lies in singers like Johnny Cash and John Denver. Not much for pop jams, Aubrey is a sucker for the sad stuff. "My favourite is the blues," she says. Aubrey has already submitted some songs of her own creation for consideration as Layla-originals, and in this upcoming season she wants to be able to do more of that, as well as work - outside of Nashville - on her own music career"
Rascal Flatts The Rewind Tour (photos)
Tim McGraw The Sundown Heaven Tour (photos)

Larkin Poe New Release KIN (Proper Records) + James House

Kacey Musgraves’ fans were a big part in picking “Keep It To Yourself” as her latest single.
“I did a little Twitter poll to see kind of what the fans were feeling as far as what they would love to hear next,” says Kacey. “There were some that were really high-charting in the poll, [and] ‘Keep It To Yourself’ was one of ‘em. It’s one of ‘em that I get a ton of people just saying like, ‘That is so me right now, and I just really have been through that.’”
The Texas native just returned from her recent overseas tour, which took her to London, Dublin and Amsterdam, among other places. Her first stop back in the States is in Aspen, Colorado July 31st.

Hit or Miss?
Taylor & The Wild Now an Alternative Folk/ Singer/Songwriter/ Popsoulful rock band from Austin, Texas are set to release their self titled 5 track debut EP on August 12th (UK iTunes ). The band was formed by Taylor Baker (guitar, vocals, banjo) and includes Drew Walker (guitar, trumpet). 

They have premiered their first song of the album, "Wanderlust" (released on UK iTunes July 14 ) which is described as "has soaring vocals, a great melodic guitar solo, sweet guitar tracks and creates the perfect feel good vibe". Check out the new track on soundcloud Connect with them on Facebook

For users of this online music streaming service here are some of the more recent additions and recommendations.
When its free and easy on Spotify who needs music piracy?

Denver – Rowdy Love - Alt/ Americana Released 15 July 2014

Kacey Musgraves – The Trailer Song – New single released June 27, 2014
Lucy Scholl – Feel Alright - From Lucy Scholl new EP see Review

Lexi James – Knockin' on Your Heart - New radio single July 28
Eileen Carey – Bottle Your Crazy Up - New radio single July 7


  • Backstage at the Opry, Jennifer Nettles (w/ Brandy Clark) reveals the inspiration for her song >> "His Hands”.
  • Florida-Georgia Line have tapped into their emotional side for their latest single, >> 'Dirt'. The video examines people's relationship with dirt and soil throughout their lives in a video that discovers a new level of depth for a band better known for
  • their good time party vibes.The song is also the first single from their forthcoming, follow-up record to their smash hit debut Here's To The Good Times. It had 2.07 million YouTube hits in less than 3 days
  • Stay With Me”  Sam Smith (Ashton Lane Kitchen Session) For 7 free songs visit
  • Suzy Bogguss "Let's Chase Each Other Around The Room"
  • The McClymonts perform a cover of  Tanya Tucker / Helen Reddy’s >> “Delta Dawn
  • "Good Wine & Bad Decisions" by Julie Roberts 
  • Scotty McCreery performed on Fox & Friends for their All American Summer Concert Series and right after his appearance, released the video for his hit, >> "Feelin' It."
  • Colbie Caillat "Try"

Taylor Swift was snapped out and about in New York City on July 9, 2014 hitting the NYC pavements like it’s her own personal runway:
She wore a Reformation ‘Elmwood Dress in Laura Print’ ($198.00 - Fashion Pic - Fashion Pic
She was wearing Prada ‘Peep Toe Slingback Sandal’ and carried a Tod’s 'Sella' tote -
Taylor Swift out and about in New York City

On July 10th she was seen out in New York wearing a TWO by Vince Camuto Lace Back Shirt, a pair of Miss Selfridge Ticking Denim Stripe Shorts (£25.00), a pair of Frye Maya Woven Peep Pumps (sold out) and her Tod’s Sella Tote($1,299.22, Cream) -
She kicked off the day with some quality family time stepping out with her parents Scott and Andrea in New York City on Friday July 11th, highlighting her slim figure in a tiny Reformation ‘Quince Jumpsuit’ ($218.00). The 24-year-old pop star later changed into a pair of little blue shorts, displaying her long slender legs, for a solo jaunt. The 22 hitmaker sported a black blazer for part of the family outing before she stripped down to her crop top in the summer heat.
Displaying her long legs in capri trousers, Taylor stood tall selecting a pair of ‘caged’ Christian Louboutin ‘Karina Caged Ankle Booties’Louboutin booties (Image) which are from the Fall 2013 collection featuring black suede woven straps with a leather trim and 4.5 heel. You can shop the new fall collection at
She carried a leather Dolce & Gabbana ‘Large Agagta Shoulder Bag’ - . The gorgeous blonde wore her hair in flowing waves over her shoulders as she painted her lips bright red - Fashion Pic
Leggy lady: She later left her apartment on July 11th wearing a white T-shirt tucked into navy blue ModCloth ‘Positive Spinnaker Shorts’ shorts, with high-heeled brown Oxford shoes - Fashion Pic  Read more: Daily Mail

Jessica Simpson first wedding picture:
The blonde bombshell dazzled throughout the day in a glitzy Carolina Herrera gown (People Exclusive Image), showing off her
slim waist and ample cleavage. Jessica, 33, looked absolutely amazing on her wedding day. After two children she transformed her figure when she tied the knot with  Eric Johnson, at San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito on July 5.
The >> behind-the-scenes video of Jessica’s fitting on June 11 in Herrera’s New York City studio offered up amazing insight on the gorgeous gown that drew inspiration from the famed portrait of Empress Elisabeth “Sissi” of Austria painted by Franz Zaver Winterhalter in 1865.
“It reminds me of the way I want you to look,” Herrera told Simpson during her dress fitting at the designer’s New York City atelier June 11. “You told me before you wanted to be very regal. I thought this is fantastic for the whole idea.”
She’s not the only one who felt that way: Simpson’s 2-year-old daughter, Maxwell, also wore Carolina Herrera for the family’s big day. "Everybody thought I was going to wear a dress that completely showed off my new bod" Jessica told the mag. "But I can't help but want a princess dress! I'm a Southern girl at heart. I like everything big."
The 33-year-old singer, who is known for her saying the wrong thing, managed to fluster her own wedding vows according to E!
As the singer exchanged her "I do's' with groom Eric Johnson she got so overwhelmed that she managed to say the wrong name.
The bride's Carolina Herrera gown also dinted the budget with a price tag of upwards of $30,000.
It wasn't all style and no substance however at the twosome managed to put their own intimate touch on the affair.
The couple's one-year-old son Ace served as the ring bearer while their two-year-old daughter Maxwell was appointed as flower girl. She was accompanied down the aisle by Bronx Wentz, Ashley Simpson's five-year-old boy.
Reports from E! have the four-day wedding at the San Ysidro Ranch in Santa Barbara, California setting the couple back $1.4 million. Amongst the costs was $300,000 for the grub and $150,000 for the floral arrangements. Read more: Daily Mail

NRA Country artist Tyler Farr recently went squirrel hunting and says, “if the world comes to an end, I don't want to rely on anyone but me to eat.”

Typical redneck behavior! - Dallas Davidson -- a famous country lyricist who's written huge hits, like "Honky Tonk Badonkadonk," "Country Girl, (Shake It For Me)" and "That's How Country Boys Roll," was arrested in Nashville early Thursday morning for fighting, hurling racial slurs and screaming, TMZ reports that Davidson was challenging “various people” to fight and shouting racial and homophobic slurs. There's that f***ing fa***t that punched me." Dallas was at Tin Roof in downtown Nashville when he got in a fight in the bar with various people. Cops say he reeked of booze and was arrested for disorderly conduct and public intoxication. He was booked at 2:50 AM and is about to be released at the time of this post.  We're told during the time he was held jailers administered a "medical screening." Dallas and his ex-wife, Sarah Davidson, are both stars on the reality show, "Private Lives of Nashville Wives

Maddie & Tae tweeted @MaddieandTae Totally overwhelmed by all the love & support from u guys. THX so much. We can't stop smiling!!! #GirlInACountrySong

Jamie Lynn Spears, Emily West, Jeannie Seely, and more. (Grand Ole Opry - July 12, 2014) - Facebook

Fin To Win: Brett Eldredge makes good on another challenge in the Bahamas yesterday (7/16) after promising to swim with sharks if his "Beat Of The Music" went No. 1. Eldredge cheered his first chart-topper "Don't Ya" with skydiving - Image

July 14:  Del Reeves (1933; died January 1, 2007 (aged 74)), Woody Guthrie (1912; ), Leslie Satcher (1962) 
July 15: Linda Ronstadt  (1946),  Lloyd Cowboy Copas (1913; died March 5, 1963 (aged 49)), Mac McAnally (1959)  
July 16: Nanci Griffith (1954), Craig Morgan (1965) 
July 17: The late Nicolette Larson (1952), Red Sovine (1918; died April 4, 1980 (aged 61)), Susan Ashton (1967)
July 18: Ricky Skaggs (1954) Elizabeth Cook
July 19: George Hamilton IV (1937), Bernie Leadon (Eagles) (1947)
July 20: Cindy Walker (1918), Radney Foster (1959), Kim Carnes (1946), T G Sheppard (1942), Julianne Hough (1988),  Hannah Blaylock

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