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Country News Digest, January 2016


2017 news: Jan - Feb - Mar - Apr - May - Jun - Jul - Aug - Sep - Oct
2016 news: Jan - Feb - Mar - Apr - May - Jun - Jul - Aug - Sep - Oct - Nov - Dec
2015 news: Jan - Feb - Mar - Apr - May - Jun - Jul - Aug - Sep - Oct - Nov - Dec

January 31, 2016 - Chris Stapleton once again will have the only country album in the Billboard top 10 when the charts are released on Tuesday. "Traveller," Stapleton's debut, was good for seventh on the chart with 34,000 units sold, down 16 percent. Adele tops the chart after a two-week absence as "25" sold 116,000... »»»
January 29, 2016 - The teases from The Swon Brothers became reality at the stroke of midnight as the duo released a surprise EP. "SURPRISE. NEW MUSIC is finally out," the Swons posted on their Facebook page. The duo posted on social media in recent weeks that new music was coming soon. Timeless" dropped with six songs.... »»»
January 29, 2016 - The Big Barrel Country Music Festival, slated for June in Delaware, was cancelled by its promoters. No reason was given for the postponement of the festival slated to have Brad Paisley, Eric Church and Sam Hunt as headliners. Last year's fest, the first Big Barrel, drew about 30,000 people over 3 days... »»»
January 29, 2016 - A record recorded during a cruise, a veteran bluegrasser at 24 and a newcomer with a lot of pedigree top today's releases. Buddy Miller wears a lot of hats, and one of them is going on Caribbean cruises in the winter to play music. "Cayamon Sessions At Sea" is billed as Buddy Miller & Friends.... »»»
January 28, 2016 - Indie artist Kane Brown is abandoning the DIY approach for a record deal with Sony Nashville. Brown, 22, a Georgia native, with a full-bodied voice, signed with RCA/Sony, it was announced on Wednesday. He had reportedly drawn the interest of numerous labels. Brown forged a career through social media.... »»»
January 27, 2016 - Tyler Farr on vocal rest following surgery to remove a polyp on his vocal hords, he announced today. Farr will no longer be on the Lee Brice tour as a result. "Unfortunately guys, I got the news that I won't be able to join Lee Brice on the Life Off My Years Tour. I'm having microlaryngeal surgery and... »»»
January 27, 2016 - Lee Brice announced today he would replace Tyler Farr as the middle act on his tour with Maddie & Tae, Jerrod Niemann and Clare Dunn. Farr is on vocal rest due to having surgery to remove a polyp on his vocal cords. Brice was ready to launch his "Life Off My Years" concert tour with Farr and Dylan... »»»
January 26, 2016 - Chart toppers Chris Stapleton and Thomas Rhett stayed right where they were once again on the Billboard charts. Rhett's "Die a Happy Man" leads the Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending Feb. 6, while Stapleton's "Traveller" CD tops the Top Country Albums chart. Sam Hunt stayed second on the songs... »»»
January 26, 2016 - The Black Lillies van, stolen early Monday, has been recovered, but without a trailer and the band's instruments, the band reported today. The Knoxville, Tenn.-based roots band posted on Facebook late Tuesday morning, "Update! The van has been retrieved by a towing company in Houston after being... »»»
January 25, 2016 - The Black Lillies, the Knoxville, Tenn.-based roots band, had its van, guitar and equipment stolen in Houston on Monday morning. VAN AND TRAILER STOLEN IN HOUSTON! If you're within a few hours' drive of Houston please keep an eye out. Our white 2011 Ford E350 van and 2016 Lark trailer were stolen from... »»»
January 25, 2016 - Jason Aldean, Eric Church and Keith Urban will headline the fifth-annual Watershed Music and Camping Festival this summer in Washington, the first-ever country music festival to host two consecutive weekends. A Thousand Horses, Brothers Osborne, Brett Eldredge, Tyler Farr, Merle Haggard, Neal McCoy,... »»»
January 24, 2016 - Chris Stapleton will have the only country CD in the Billboard top 10 when the charts are released on Tuesday. "Traveller" sold 41,000 units, up 25 percent from the previous week. That is good for eighth on the overall list. Stapleton benefited from being the musical guest on the Jan.... »»»
January 22, 2016 - Singer Aoife O'Donovan returns with "In the Magic Hour," the follow-up to "Fossils." O'Donovan has an ethereal singing quality. She has done time with Crooked Still and a host of side gigs including with Punch Brothers and Yo-Yo Ma. The Cactus Blossoms are out with "You're Dreaming," their first for Red House.... »»»
January 22, 2016 - Kid Rock was named as the third and final headliner at the 4th Annual Taste of Country Music Festival, coming June 10-12 at Hunter Mountain Resort in the Catskill area of New York. Kid Rock will join Kenny Chesney and Jake Owen, who were previously announced as headliners, plus Gary Allan, Big & Rich,... »»»
January 22, 2016 - Keith Urban, Vince Gill and Luke Bryan will lead the charge for the sixth annual All for the Hall fundraiser concert in Nashville on April 12. They will be joined by Emmylou Harris, Maddie & Tae, Jason Isbell, Florida Georgia Line, Sam Hunt, Maren Morris and Peter Frampton at the Bridgestone Arena on April 12.... »»»
January 22, 2016 - MIranda Lambert announced this morning she will be on the road this summer on the Keeper of the Flame Tour. Kip Moore and Brothers Osborne will open for Lambert. Locales on the tour are: Miranda is hitting the road this summer on the "Keeper of the Flame" Tour with special guest Kip Moore and... »»»
January 22, 2016 - Brandy Clark released a new single, "Girl Next Door," today. The song is her first with Warner, which will release her next CD. No release date for the CD has been announced. "Girl Next Door" is a more upbeat song musically and less traditional country-wise than some of the songs on her "12 Stories"... »»»
January 21, 2016 - Florida Georgia Line will embark on their Dig Your Roots tour, starting in March. Brian Kelley said, "Tyler (Hubbard) and I are going to make this year very personal with the Dig Your Roots Tour. We want our fans to feel right at home with us as they learn more about our story, and we learn about theirs.... »»»
January 21, 2016 - Robbie Fulks will go back to his roots with his ninth album, "Upland Stories," coming out on April 1 on Bloodshot. The disc is the follow-up to "Gone Away Backward" in 2013. The release focuses on Fulks' perspective through literary narrative lenses like James Agee's 1936 trip to Alabama and the... »»»
January 21, 2016 - Luke Bryan, Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, Little Big Town and Chris Young top the bill for third Route 91 Harvest in Las Vegas. Set to take place at the Las Vegas Village across from Luxor Hotel and Casino Sept. 30 - Oct. 2, tickets for the two-stage country music festival go on sale Friday, Jan. 29 at 10 a.m. Pacific.... »»»
January 21, 2016 - Hank Williams Jr. and Chris Stapleton will team up for a summer tour, it was announced this morning. The tour kicks off Aug. 5 in Tampa, Fla. and visit eight cities across the country with dates including Houston, Austin, Cleveland, Indianapolis and Cincinnati. Williams released "It's About Time"... »»»
January 20, 2016 - Kris Kristofferson will bring Dierks Bentley, Lady Antebellum, Eric Church and Willie Nelson together for the all-star concert event taping of The Life & Songs of Kris Kristofferson on March 16 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. Ryan Bingham, Rosanne Cash, Emmylou Harris, Jamey Johnson, Darius... »»»
January 20, 2016 - Jason Aldean, Brooks & Dunn, Brantley Gilbert, Toby Keith, Tim McGraw and Thomas Rhett will play the second edition of FarmBorough in New York City. The Live Nation Entertainment and Founders Entertainment collaboration will be a two-stage festival on June 17-19 for a second year on Randall's Island.... »»»
January 19, 2016 - Chris Stapleton, Sam Hunt and Jason Isbell lead the country and Americana acts playing Bonnaroo this year. The line-up for the 15th edition of the Manchester, Tenn. Fest was announced late Tuesday with Pearl Jam, Dead & Company and LCD Soundsystem playing. The eclectic fest also will feature Sam Bush... »»»
January 19, 2016 - Roots band Elephant Revival announced today the release of "Petals" (Thirty Tigers) on April 1. The release will be the band's sixth overall, following last year's CD/DVD of "Sands of Now (Live at the Boulder Theater)." Formed in 2006 in Nederland, Col., Elephant Revival, which combines country,... »»»
January 19, 2016 - Randy Houser, who is moving up the charts with "We Want," releases his fourth studio album, "Fired Up. " The 17-song album is Houser's second for Stoney Creek Records, following "How Country Feels." Derek George once again will produce. He worked on "How Country Feels," with which Houser enjoyed... »»»
January 19, 2016 - >Dierks Bentley released the lead single from his upcoming disc, "Black," today, "Somewhere On A Beach." Bentley also announced today that the U.S. leg of his 2016 Somewhere on a Beach Tour will begin on May 12 in Holmdel, N.J. at the PNC Bank Arts Center with Randy Houser and special guest Cam.... »»»
January 19, 2016 - Trick Pony will release the EP "Pony Up" on Feb. 26 via Sony. Comprised of Heidi Newfield and Keith Burns, the group reformed in 2013. Produced by James Stroud, the project will feature five songs. The first track off of the upcoming project, "Everybody Wanna Be Us," is available now via digital outlets.... »»»
January 19, 2016 - Jeff Tweedy, Hurray for the Riff Raff are among the first round of artists announce for the Pickathon festival in Oregon in August. Joining them will be New Orleans band The Deslondes, Lindi Ortega, Margo Price, who releases her debut in March on Jack White's Third Man Records, 10 String Symphony,... »»»
January 18, 2016 - Glenn Frey, a founding member of the Eagles, died Monday at 67, the band announced on its web site. Frey had health complications for several months, causing the band to recently cancel its Kennedy Center appearance in Washington. "It is with the heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of our... »»»
January 17, 2016 - Mel Tillis is recovering from colon surgery earlier this month, his representative said. Tillis, 83, had surgery at in Nashville on Jan. 8. Don Grubbs told The Tennessean that the singer is "on the road to recovery." "Doctors said he's doing fine and on the right track," Grubbs said.... »»»
January 17, 2016 - Chris Stapleton will have the only country CD in the Billboard top 10 when it is released Tuesday with "Traveller." Stapleton's debut disc sold 33,000 units, down 20 percent, for the week ending Jan. 14, according to Nielsen Music. Stapleton has been near the top every week of the Billboard country... »»»
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January 15, 2016 - Hank Jr., a veteran Texas band and a brotherly duo released new music on Friday. Williams is back with "It's About Time" on the NashIcon label, a division of Big Machine. Julian Raymond (Glen Campbell, Cheap Trick) produced the dozen-song disc, which contains re-recorded versions of "Mental... »»»
January 15, 2016 - Miranda Lambert has a new song out. "Sweet By and By" came out as part of an upcoming compilation disc, "Southern Family," the Dave Cobb-conceived disc featuring a multitude of acts. The song clocks in at 3:37 and can be heard on Spotify. Lambert is on t he disc along with Zac Brown band, Jamie... »»»
January 14, 2016 - Traditional country singer Whitney Rose signed a deal with Six Shooter Records, she announced today. Rose released "Heartbreaker of the Year" last year to much praise. Raul Malo of The Mavericks produced the disc and sang duets with Rose as well. She was discovered five years ago by Blue Rodeo's Bob... »»»
January 13, 2016 - Luke Bryan announce today he will play five stadium shows this year, a day after announcing 40 more shows. Bryan announced the stadium shows to his fans via his mobile app and followed it up with a live announcement on his Facebook page. Bryan will play Foxboro's Gillette Stadium in the Boston area... »»»
January 13, 2016 - Teddy Thompson and singer Kelly Jones will release a harmony duet collaboration, "Little Windows," on Cooking Vinyl April 1. The pair first sang together on a George Jones track at Los Angeles' Club Largo in 2011. They soon embarked on a bi-coastal musical relationship (she in Los Angeles, he in New... »»»
January 13, 2016 - Lucinda Williams has announced tour dates following the February release of "The Ghosts of Highway 20" (Highway 20/Thirty Tigers). The tour will kick off in Los Angeles on March 4 and will include a special five night run in New York City from March 13-18. "The Ghosts of Highway 20," coming Feb.... »»»
January 12, 2016 - Joey + Rory will release a deluxe package of the upcoming "Hymns That Are Important To Us" Feb. 12 at Cracker Barrel. The announcement comes at a time when Joey is in hospice care with cancer. Her husband, Rory Feek, has documented her illness in a blog, "This Life I Live." The duo's seventh studio... »»»
January 12, 2016 - Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton yet again led the Billboard country songs and albums chart, for the week ending Jan. 23, with "Die a Happy Man" and "Traveller" respectively. Sam Hunt was second on the songs chart with "Break Up in a Small Town." Luke Bryan's "Home Alone Tonight" featuring Karen... »»»
January 12, 2016 - The iHeartCountry Festival is returning to Austin in late April with Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban, Florida Georgia Line and Sam Hunt on the bill. The fest, staged by iHeartMedia, will be held at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin on Saturday, April 30. Others slated to play are Brett Eldredge, Thomas... »»»
January 11, 2016 - Keith Urban announced his 2016 tour today. The tour starts June 2 in Kansas and concludes Nov. in Brooklyn, N.Y. Brett Eldredge and newcomer Maren Morris, who is getting airplay with "My Church," will open the shows. Tour dates are: June 2 Bonner Springs, KS Cricket Wireless Amphitheater June... »»»
January 11, 2016 - Chris Young is out with a new single, "Think of You," a duet with Republic Nashville singer and The Voice winner Cassadee Pope. The song is on Young's "I'm Comin' Over" album, "Think of You" was co-written by Young, Corey Crowder and Josh Hoge and is available at country radio today for an official... »»»
January 11, 2016 - Following the success of "Break Up With Him," Old Dominion is back at radio with its second single, "Snapback." The band reported today that 126 first week chart reporting country radio stations across the country are now spinning the single off the group's debut CD, "Meat and Candy.... »»»
January 11, 2016 - Dierks Bentley announced Monday he would release his eighth studio disc, "Black," early this year. A new single will be out "in the coming weeks," according to a press release. "It's a relationship album," Bentley said. "And to do it right, I had to dig deep as a writer, dig into the Nashville... »»»
January 10, 2016 - Chris Stapleton will continue his reign atop the Billboard Country Albums chart with "Traveller." Stapleton's debut went from 12 to 7 on the overall chart after selling 41,000 units, down 11 percent from last week. Stapleton's CD was the only country CD in the top 10. Adele once again had the top... »»»
January 10, 2016 - Red Simpson, one of the leading trucker country singers and purveyors of the Bakersfield Sound, died on Friday at 81 in Bakersfield, Cal. Simpson had several truck driving songs reach the charts and also achieved success as a songwriter with Buck Owens and Merle Haggard among those recording his songs.... »»»
January 8, 2016 - Veteran bluegrass band The Grascals are out with their eighth album, "and then there's this." The sextet also includes country sounds on the dozens song disc. Veteran members Terry Eldredge, Danny Roberts, Terry Smith, Kristin Scott Benson and Adam Haynes are joined by John Bryan, who plays guitar and sings.... »»»
January 8, 2016 - Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum will release his debut solo album, "The Driver," on Feb. 5 on Capitol Records Nashville. The nine-track disc has already received a Grammy nomination for its lead single/title track, which features Dierks Bentley and Eric Paslay. Kelley also covers Tom Petty's... »»»
January 7, 2016 - Blake Shelton hopes to have a new single out this month with a new full-length dropping in May. Shelton told Lon Shelton in a Country Countdown USA interview that 2015 was the "greatest year of my life." The year also saw him divorce Miranda Lambert. "I hope to have a new single out in January.... »»»
January 7, 2016 - Gloriana member Rachel Reinert announced today she was leaving the trio. Reinert will work on a solo disc. The decision will leave what was once a quartet down to brothers Mike and Tom Gossin. Gloriana has released three albums and one EP. "Three" was the most recent release, out in June 2015.... »»»
January 6, 2016 - Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood and Lady Antebellum won the country awards handed out Wednesday at the People's Choice Awards in Los Angeles. Shelton took home the Favorite Male Country Artist, Underwood the Favorite Female and Lady Antebellum the Favorite Group. Other nominees were: Brad Paisley,... »»»
January 6, 2016 - Oklahoma born singer/songwriter Parker Millsap will release "The Very Last Day" on March 25 via Okrahoma Records/Thirty Tigers. Millsap's sophomore release follows 2014's well-received self-titled debut. He toured heavily behind that disc. Millsap co-produced "The Very Last Day" with Grammy... »»»
January 6, 2016 - The first-ever Grand Ole Opry feature-length concert movie, "American Saturday Night: Live From The Grand Ole Opry," will play at more than 200 movie theatres natiionwide next month. Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton, and Darius Rucker as well as The Band Perry and Brett Eldredge appear in the concert film,... »»»
January 5, 2016 - Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton continued their domination of the Billboard charts. Rhett led the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending Jan. 16 with "Die a Happy Man." Stapleton's "Traveller" topped the Top Country Albums chart. Carrie Underwood was second behind Stapleton with... »»»
January 5, 2016 - Chris Stapleton's dizzying success since winning three CMA awards in November continues as he will be the musical guest of Saturday Night Live on Jan. 16. Actor Adam Driver, who plays Kylo Ren in the new "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" movie, will be the guest host for the show, NBC announced via Tweet this afternoon.... »»»
January 5, 2016 - Cam will make her debut on NBC's The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Monday, Jan. 11. The California native, who has a hit on her hands with "Burning House," will sing the song on the show. She released her debut album last month. Cam was nominated for Best Country Solo Performance for the song.... »»»
January 4, 2016 - Chris Stapleton will be the only traditional country act playing Coachella this year. Stapleton will play on Sundays, April 17 and 24 at the two-weekend, three-day festival at Indio, Cal. Lord Huron, more of an Americana act from Indiana, will play on Fridays, April 15 and 22. Stapleton has enjoyed a... »»»
January 4, 2016 - Aerosmith lead singer Steven Tyler released a new single today, "Red White And You." The song is from his first solo disc, presumably dropping sometime this year on Dot Records, a subsidiary of Big Machine Label Group. Tyler wrote the song with Nathan Barlowe, Levi Hummon and Jon Vella.... »»»
January 4, 2016 - Sam Hunt returns this Wednesday to NBC's "Late Night with Seth Meyers." Hunt will perform his Top 5 single, "Break Up In A Small Town." Hunt made his national television debut on Meyers' stage in September 2014 when he performed his debut single, "Leave the Night On," off his first major label album... »»»
January 4, 2016 - Missing country singer Craig Strickland was found dead in Oklahoma, following a hunting trip with a friend, who was also found dead, his wife confirmed this afternoon. Helen Strickland posted on Twitter, "#CraigStrickland was found today. He is safe with his Father in Heaven. Thank you Lord for leading... »»»