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Country News Digest, January 2015

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January 30, 2015 - No surprise - those receiving ACM nominations are quite happy. Kenny Chesney received four nominations centered around his single "American Kids." "With two hooks, three rhythm scans and some of the most ingenious wordplay I've ever experienced, 'American Kids' is unlike anything I've ever heard," Chesney said.... »»»
January 30, 2015 - Carrie Underwood hopes there's something in the water for "Little Toy Guns" as well. Fresh off the seven-week number one run of "Something in the Water," Underwood is releasing "Little Toy Guns" as her new single. Both songs were on "Greatest Hits: Decade #1." Underwood wrote the song with Chris... »»»
January 30, 2015 - Miranda Lambert batted 1000 on Friday as she was nominated in all seven Academy of Country Music categories for which she could be nominated. Lambert actually received eight nominations because she received one as the artist as well as songwriter in the Song of the Year category.... »»»
January 29, 2015 - The first set of Academy of Country Music nominations came out today for Songwriter of the Year and radio station categories. Nominees were: Songwriter of the Year: Rodney Clawson Ashley Gorley Luke Laird Josh Osborne Chris Tompkins National On Air Personality of the Year: Big D,... »»»
January 29, 2015 - Luke Bryan saw his latest single, "I See You," go all the way to number one as the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending Feb. 7 were released today. Bryan knocked out Carrie Underwood whose "Something in the Water" fell to second after being first for seven weeks.... »»»
January 28, 2015 - Billy Currington, Eli Young Band, Jerrod Niemann and Sara Evans were among the artists announced today to join the Taste of Country Music Festival in New York in June. They join headliners Tim McGraw, Keith Urban and Toby Keith, who were previously announced to play. Easton Corbin, Chase Bryant,... »»»
January 28, 2015 - Dierks Bentley is going home this weekend. With Super Bowl Sunday looming, Bentley is going back to Phoenix for a variety of appearances. He will play in the Waste Management Phoenix Open Annexus Pro-Am today before hosting a pre Super Bowl bash at his bar "Whiskey Row" on Friday.... »»»
January 27, 2015 - Punch Brothers utilized a top of the line producer for their new disc. Nearly a decade since T. Graham Brown's last release, he's out with new music. And Brooklyn-based trio The Lone Bellow are out with their second disc. Punch Brothers worked with producer T Bone Burnett on their latest.... »»»
January 27, 2015 - The Windy City LakeShake Festival is coming to Chicago this summer with Brad Paisley, Florida Georgia Line and Dierks Bentley among the artists playing the June fest. Live Nation is putting on the festival June 19-21, part of its continuing expansion of holding country music festivals around the U.S.... »»»
January 26, 2015 - Keith Urban released the fifth single - "Raise 'Em Up" - from his seventh studio album "Fuse." The song features Eric Church and follows in a line of number ones from "Fuse," including "Little Bit of Everything," "We Were Us" and Urban's 17th number 1 "Somewhere In My Car." "Eric and I have been... »»»
January 23, 2015 - Lydia Loveless film star? The Ohio native may just be on the silver screen if a Kickstarter campaign from the director is successful. Filmmaker Gorman Bechard, who has chronicled The Replacements, Archers of Loaf, and Husker Du's Grant Hart is turning his camera towards Loveless in "Who Is Lydia... »»»
January 22, 2015 - Another week at the top for Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton on the Billboard charts. Rhett sits atop the Hot Country Songs chart with "Die a Happy Man," while Stapleton leads the Top Country Albums chart with "Traveller" for the week ending Jan. 30. On the albums chart, Sam Hunt is second with "Montevallo.... »»»
January 22, 2015 - Carrie Underwood likes whatever is in the water because she remains first on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending Jan. 31 with "Something in the Water." Sam Hunt was first on the albums chart with "Montevallo." Luke Bryan is second on the songs chart with "I See You," one ahead... »»»
January 22, 2015 - There used to be Johnny and June, George and Tammy, Porter and Dolly. More recently Tim and Faith. Add Garth and Trisha to the list. That's because Brooks and wife Trisha Yearwood are going to release a duets Christmas album. The two are on tour together with Yearwood coming out to sing some songs,... »»»
January 22, 2015 - Toby Keith was been added as the fourth headliner for the 24th Annual Country Jam music coming this June to Colorado. The festival, slated for June 18-21, will be at Jam Ranch outside Grand Junction, Col. Keith joins previously announced headliners Tim McGraw, Keith Urban and The Band Perry.... »»»
January 21, 2015 - Miranda Lambert was added to the list of performers at the 57th annual Grammy awards. Common and John Legend, who will perform "Glory" from the film Selma, Sam Smith and Pharrell Williams, who are tied with six nominations each, also join the list of performers. Eric Church was previously announced as... »»»
January 21, 2015 - Luke Bryan is staying busy this year as he revealed plans today to hit seven stadiums and do multiple dates in the U.S., tour overseas for the first time, release another Spring Break album and be the subject of an exhibition at the Country Music Hall of Fame. "I'm so excited about today," said Bryan... »»»
January 21, 2015 - The iHeartRadio Country Festival is coming back to Austin this spring with Tim McGraw and Brad Paisley aboard. The festival, coming May 2 at the Frank Erwin Center, also will feature Brantley Gilbert and Rascal Flatts and Brad Paisley with more to be announced. iHeartMedia's nationally-syndicated... »»»
January 20, 2015 - Dixie Hall, wife of Tom T. Hall and a bluegrass and country music songwriter, died on Friday at 80. Known as Miss Dixie, she wrote more than 500 commercially recorded bluegrass songs along with Johnny Cash and Miranda Lambert among those recording her work. She was born Iris Violet May Lawrence in England.... »»»
January 20, 2015 - Kenny Chesney will see if he can be third time lucky. Chesney is releasing his third single, "Wild Child" with Grace Potter helping out. Chesney already has gone to the top of the charts with the first two singles from "The Big Revival," "American Kids" and "Till It's Gone." Chesney wrote the new... »»»
January 20, 2015 - Ralph Stanley and Ryan Bingham top the list of new releases out today. Stanley, 87, is releasing "Man of Constant Sorrow" through Cracker Barrel. This is not the first time Stanley has released a disc with that name. In 2000, he put out a compilation album of songs from the '70s and '80s.... »»»
January 20, 2015 - Jo Dee Messina will perform the National Anthem at the 2015 Honda National Hockey League All-Star Game Sunday, January 25. The game will be held at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio and will be broadcast live at 5 p.m. eastern on NBCSN with additional performances by Fall Out Boy and O.A.R..... »»»
January 16, 2015 - House Speaker John Boehner can't shake off Taylor Swift when it comes to education. In a posting on his web site on Friday, Boehner staffers Caleb Smith and Mike Ricci created the posting The posting includes 13 (there's a bonus one from Swift's "Shake It Off" video") gifs of Swift connected with... »»»
January 16, 2015 - Sturgill Simpson announced that he has signed a record deal with Atlantic Records. Simpson released "Metamodern Sounds in Country Music" last year to much praise. The disc has been on the Billboard top 20. On his Facebook page, Simpson depicted an Atlantic single with his name on there.... »»»
January 16, 2015 - The eighth installment of Del Fest will feature Old Crow Medicine Show, Leftover Salmon and Trampled by Turtles. DelFest, which will be held in Cumberland, Md. from May 21-24, will present first time acts Lake Street Dive, Shovels and Rope, Nicki Bluhm & The Gramblers, D.C. area favorites and IBMA... »»»
January 15, 2015 - Chris Young and Lee Brice are joining forces for a co-headlining tour beginning in Syracuse, N.Y. in one week. "Lee and I had a blast last year when we were out with Brad (Paisley) and so we thought it would be great to join up for a co-headlining tour for our fans this winter," said Young, who has... »»»
January 15, 2015 - Carrie Underwood remained first on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending Jan. 24 with "Something in the Water," while Garth Brooks was first again on the Top Country Albums chart with "Man Against Machine." Brooks jumped from fifth to first with last week's chart topper, Jason... »»»
January 14, 2015 - Boston-area band Girls Guns and Glory will release a live tribute album to Hank on Feb. 24 via Lonesome Day Records' new imprint Dry Lighting Records. "Hank Williams was a game changer," said Girls Guns and Glory vocalist/guitarist Ward Hayden. "I've read a few Hank biographies and something that... »»»
January 14, 2015 - Eric Church will perform at the 57th Grammy Awards next month along with AC/DC, Madonna, Ariana Grande and Ed Sheeran on Feb. 8. Church is up for four awards this year; Best Country Solo Performance and Best Country Song for "Give Me Back My Hometown;" Best Country Duo/Group Performance for "Raise 'Em... »»»
January 13, 2015 - Darius Rucker offered a surprise Monday night - he has his fourth solo disc coming out in late March. Rucker announced on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" "Southern Style" drops March 31. Rucker also said The Southern Style Tour will kick off May 14th in Holmdel, N.J.... »»»
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January 13, 2015 - Justin Townes Earle is releasing the bookend to last fall's disc today. "Absent Fathers," which contains a few songs with apparent references to his father, Steve Earle, follows up on last September's "Single Mothers." While recorded at the same time, Earle wanted to release the new music separately.... »»»
January 13, 2015 - Dierks Bentley is launching the Sounds of Summer tour In June. The 40-city run will kick off June 5 in Raleigh, N.C. and continue through the summer with Kip Moore, Maddie & Tae and Canaan Smith opening. "There have been tours in my career that I thought would be impossible to top, and the past... »»»
January 13, 2015 - Punch Brothers and Dawes are among the country and bluegrass acts playing this year's edition of Bonnaroo, which was announced Tuesday. Other acts joining the fest from June 11-14 in Manchester, Tenn. are The Bluegrass Situation Superjam featuring Ed Helms, Trampled By Turtles, Sturgill Simpson, Bela... »»»
January 13, 2015 - Reba McEntire and Brooks and Dunn will no longer be starting their planned Las Vegas residence on June 24. That's because sales went so well - the first three shows sold out - that they added 3 shows on June, 17, 19 and 20. Tickets for the new shows are on sale now. Other shows are July 1, 3 and 5 and Aug.... »»»
January 13, 2015 - The George Jones Museum will open in late April in downtown Nashville, the singer's widow announced Monday. Nancy Jones announced the museum will open the weekend of April 24, which will coincide with the second anniversary of the singer's passing (April 26). The museum will tell the story of the... »»»
January 13, 2015 - Babe the Blue Ox is alive and well in the form of a music festival in June. The Blue Ox Musical Festival in Wisconsin will feature Americana, roots and bluegrass. The founders and organizers of Country Jam USA in Eau Claire, Wisc., are launching a three-day outdoor music festival at Whispering Pines... »»»
January 12, 2015 - Eric Church will continue staying on The Outsiders tour as he announced new dates for this spring. Each stop will include one special guest for the new leg of The Outsiders World Tour, varying to include diverse artists as Brothers Osborne, Southern gothic rootsy rockers Drive-By-Truckers, blues... »»»
January 12, 2015 - Tim McGraw announced today the launch of an extensive North American summer tour and the release of a brand new single, "Diamond Rings and Old Barstools." The Shotgun Rider Tour '15 will kick off in June with special guest Billy Currington and newcomer Chase Bryant on the bill.... »»»
January 12, 2015 - Zac Brown Band released a new single at the stroke of midnight from a forthcoming album. ZBB performed "Homegrown" today during the College Football Playoff National Championship Tailgate. There was no word on when a new disc would be out from the band. The group released "Greatest Hits So Far" in November.... »»»
January 12, 2015 - Lee Ann Womack is sending out a new single - "Send it On Down." The record is from Womack's Grammy nominated Best Country Album "The Way I'm Livin'," released last year. Womack's husband, Frank Liddell (Miranda Lambert, David Nail, Eli Young Band), produced the song, which was penned by Chris... »»»
January 12, 2015 - Swedish sister duo First Aid Kit released a new animated video for their song "Master Pretender." The song is on the second album from Johanna and Klara Soderberg., who combined forces to write every song on the album. "Stay Gold" was released in June 2014 on... »»»
January 9, 2015 - Gretchen Peters’ ‘will release her next album, "Blackbirds’" on Feb. 10. Co-produced with Doug Lancio and Barry Walsh, and recorded in Nashville, the 11-track album features Jerry Douglas, Jason Isbell, Jimmy LaFave, Will Kimbrough, Kim Richey and Suzy Bogguss.... »»»
January 8, 2015 - The country music community said goodbye to Little Jimmy Dickens today in a celebration of life at the Grand Ole Opry. Participants ranged from Brad Paisley, a long-time friend of Dickens, to Vince Gill and Carrie Underwood. Dickens, known for being a singer of novelty songs along with his devotion... »»»
January 8, 2015 - Taylor Swift was a big winner at Wednesday's People Choice Awards, but it wasn't for anything she did on the country end. Swift won Favorite Female, Favorite Pop Artist and Favorite Song for "Shake It Off," which is from her "1989" disc. Among country artists, Carrie Underwood took home Favorite... »»»
January 8, 2015 - Jason Aldean reclaimed the top of the Billboard Country Albums chart with "Old Boots, New Dirt" for the week ending Jan. 17. On the Hot Country Songs chart, Carrie Underwood held onto first with "Something in the Water." Aldean assumed the top of the albums chart from Garth Brooks "Man Against... »»»
January 8, 2015 - Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Dierks Bentley and Rascal Flatts will lead the line-up at the first Shaky Boots Music Festival coming to the Atlanta area in mid-May. The eclectic line-up features more modern acts along with edgier groups such as Jason Isbell, Old Crow Medicine Show and The Devil Makes Three.... »»»
January 7, 2015 - Reba McEntire released a new single, her first from an album coming out later this year. "Going Out Like That" came out today and will go for adds on Jan. 12. The Oklahoma native debuted "Going Out Like That," her first new song in four years, on America's Morning Show. The song is the first for... »»»
January 7, 2015 - The funeral on Thursday of Little Jimmy Dickens will be broadcast online at and on WSM radio. DIckens, a member of both the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry, died last Friday at 94 in Nashville. The ceremony remembering Dickens will be held at the Grand Ole Opry House on... »»»
January 6, 2015 - Lady Antebellum announced The Wheels Up 2015 tour today. The band will kick things off on Feb. 28 with a European trek through Norway, Sweden, Ireland, Scotland, the United Kingdom and Australia and begin the North American leg on May 1 in Lubbock, Texas. The tour will continue through the fall with... »»»
January 6, 2015 - The Avett Brothers and the Earls of Leicester were added to the MerleFest line-up, it was announced today. Jim Avett, father of two members of The Avett Brothers, also will appear at MerleFest, which will be held April 23-26 in Wilkesboro, N.C. "We promised more surprises for our 2015 lineup, and... »»»
January 6, 2015 - Brandy Clark, who scored Grammy nominations for Best New Artist and Country Album of the Year for "12 Stories," will perform on ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Late Night with Seth Meyers on Jan. 12. The disc was released in October 2013 to widespread praise. She also helped write Kacey... »»»
January 5, 2015 - Maddie & Tae will not only be "Girls in a Country Song" because they are releasing a new single. The duo - Madison Marlow and Taylor Dye - had a big hit on their hands with their first single and are now releasing "Fly." The song is available now and will for adds at radio on Jan. 26.... »»»
January 5, 2015 - Ripsaw Records, best known for its rockabilly acts, is making a strange bedfellow. The label is teaming with indie bluegrass label Patuxent Records to release its very first artist, Louie Setzer, in a bluegrass recording this spring that will be released through both labels. Setzer, aka "The Duke... »»»
January 5, 2015 - A public visitation for the late Little Jimmy Dickens will be held Wednesday with a celebration of life service on Thursday morning at the Grand Ole Opry. Dickens, a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry, died at 94 on Friday after suffering a stroke in December.... »»»
January 2, 2015 - Short in stature, but long casting a shadow as an ambassador of country music as a singer of novelty songs, Little Jimmy Dickens died Friday at 94 in Nashville of cardiac arrest. Dickens, who stood all of 4-11, had been a member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1948 and was its oldest member.... »»»
January 2, 2015 - Eric Church had the best selling country disc in the U.S. in 2014 with "The Outsiders." The disc sold 811,l000 units, far behind that of Taylor Swift's "1989," which was number 1 with 3.66 million. Swift edged out the "Frozen" soundtrack, which was at 3.53 million. Church had the only country CD in the top 10.... »»»