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Country News Digest, March 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

March 31, 2016 - Carrie Underwood will extend her Storyteller tour into the fall, she announced Thursday. The Storyteller Tour- Stories in the Round will include stops in Los Angeles (StaplesCenter), Nashville (Bridgestone Arena), and New York City (Madison Square Garden). "I always love being on the road performing... »»»
March 30, 2016 - Joey + Rory led the Billboard Top Country Albums chart for the week ending April 9 with "Hymns." Cole Swindell leads the Hot Country Songs chart again with "You Should Be Here." Brett Eldredge held second on the songs chart with "Drunk On Your Love," one ahead of Thomas Rhett's "Die a Happy Man.... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Dierks Bentley will release "Black," his eighth studio disc on May 27, it was announced today. "It's a relationship album that covers the ups and downs of the journey and ends with some self-realization and evolvement," said Bentley. "The song 'Black' helps set all of that in motion at the top of the... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Miranda Lambert will perform with Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top and Keith Urban at the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards on Sunday, singing ZZ Top's classic "Tush," it was announced today. Kelsea Ballerini will be joined by pop singer Nick Jonas for a performance as well. New Orleans musician Trombone... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Charlie Daniels, Randy Travis and Fred Foster will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, it was announced today. Daniels will be inducted in the Veteran's Era category. Foster will be inducted in the Non-Performer category. Travis will be the 2016 inductee in the Modern Era category.... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Glen Campbell, Keith Urban and Carrie Underwood are among the winners of Special Awards from The Academy of Country Music announced today. This year's Special Award honorees include Campbell (Career Achievement Award), Crystal Gayle (Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award), Eddie Rabbitt (Poet's Award, awarded... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Merle Haggard is staying off the road through April. Haggard was recommended to continue resting to complete his recovery from double pneumonia. "I want to thank my fans for their prayers and well wishes. I hope to be back on the road in May, but I'm taking it one day at a time," the Hag said in a press release.... »»»
March 29, 2016 - Three country CDs will be in the Billboard top 10 when the charts are out Tuesday with Chris Stapleton's "Traveller" leading the way. Stapleton was sixth with 33,000 units sold, down 4 percent for the chart ending March 24. r Kane Brown debuted in ninth with his "Chapter I" (EP) with 28,000 units.... »»»
March 28, 2016 - Fresh off his fourth number one with "We Went" and releasing his new album, "Fired Up" Randy Houser went to country radio today with his new single "Song Number 7." The song is the second most-added song at country radio with 60 first week reporters, marking Houser's highest first week add total to date.... »»»
March 25, 2016 - A movie soundtrack about Hank Williams and a Nashville-based singer who is old school are out today with new discs. "I Saw the Light" is a music bio about Williams starring British actor Tom Hiddleston. He turns in covers of such songs as "hey Good Lookin'," "Move It On Over" and "Jambalaya.... »»»
March 24, 2016 - Jon Pardi will release his sophomore full album,"California Sunrise," on June 17. The lead single, "Head Over Boots," has already been released. Pardi mixes a more traditional sound along with rock. "I always want to have the traditional country soul while meeting the new standards of country music,"... »»»
March 24, 2016 - Love and Theft, who previously had a hit with "Angel Eyes," signed to Curb Records earlier this month. After albums with a subsidiary of Lyric Street and then RCA, the duo of Stephen Barker Liles and Eric Gunderson independently released "Whiskey On My Breath," going with a softer sound.... »»»
March 23, 2016 - Kenny Chesney will release a new single, "Noise," on Thursday afternoon. Chesney has spread the word via Twitter for several days that new music was coming. This will be the first single from his forthcoming album. No details were released about his new album. Chesney had gone into a marketing meeting... »»»
March 23, 2016 - Chris Stapleton, Kelsea Ballerini and Old Dominion were named today the New Male, Female Duo/Group of the Year respectively by the Academy Of Country Music Awards. These awards mark the first-ever ACM Award wins for Ballerini, Stapleton and Old Dominion. Ballerini is also nominated for Female... »»»
March 22, 2016 - Joey + Rory sit atop the Billboard Top Country Albums chart with "Hymns," while Cole Swindell's "You Should Be Here" leads the Hot Country Songs chart for the second straight week on the charts for the week ending April 2l Blake Shelton held second on the songs chart with "Came Here to Forget," up four.... »»»
March 22, 2016 - Katy Perry and Dolly Parton will join forces for a joint performance at the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards. There was no word on what the pop star and Parton would sing. Parton also will be honored with the Tex Ritter Award for her television movie, "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors.... »»»
March 22, 2016 - Stagecoach was named Festival of the Year by the Academy of Country Music in a series of Industry Awards announced today. The ACM Industry Awards recognize the executives and venues contributing to the artistry, success and longevity of country music. Winners were: Casino of the Year - Small... »»»
March 21, 2016 - Hank Williams Jr. will visit the TODAY show on Tuesday. Hank Jr.'s daughter, singer Hilly Williams, joins him for a sit-down interview and acoustic performance for Jenna Bush Hager's "Family Business" series. The appearance follows the recent release of Williams' 37th studio album, "It's About Time"... »»»
March 20, 2016 - Joey + Rory's "Hymns" is the top selling country disc in the country. The recording sold just over 44,000 units, down 1 percent. That was good enough for fourth on the overall Top 200 chart. The disc was released about three weeks before the death of Joey Feek from cancer. "Hymns" led the Top Album... »»»
March 18, 2016 - Steve Young, who wrote "Seven Bridges Road" and ""Lonesome, On'ry and Mean," died today at 73. Young also enjoyed a career as a recording artist in his own right. Young's son, Jubal, posted on Facebook, on Thursday "My father, Steve Young, passed peacefully tonight in Nashville.... »»»
March 18, 2016 - Lots of new releases dot the musical landscape today ranging from a disc put together by hot producer Dave Cobb to a syndicated radio show host to several bluegrass albums by veteran bands to a few newcomers putting out EPs. Dave Cobb has gained much acclaim for producing Jason Isbell, Chris Stapleton... »»»
March 17, 2016 - Keith Urban said today he would release "Ripchord," his eighth studio disc, on May 6. "Ripchord" already has yielded hit singles in "John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16″ and "Break on Me." "Ripcord is almost done - and it's been an exhilarating journey," Urban said. "Getting to work with so many... »»»
March 17, 2016 - Cam talks to "The Talk" on March 21 where she will perform her number one hit, "Burning House." The daily one-hour series is hosted by Julie Chen, Sara Gilbert, Sharon Osbourne, Aisha Tyler and Sheryl Underwood. Cam's apperance follows stops in Australia and Austin. Cam's "Mayday," is the new... »»»
March 16, 2016 - Maren Morris, the voice behind the hit single "My Church," releases her major label debut, "Hero," on June 3 on Sony. The disc includes 11 tracks, all of which Morris had a hand in writing. Some of the songs on last year's EP are included. "'I Wish I Was' is the most autobiographical song on this... »»»
March 16, 2016 - Brett Eldredge and Chris Young with Cassadee Pope were added to the lineup of artists slated to perform at the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards, it was announced today. The ceremony, co-hosted by Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley, will be broadcast live from MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas,... »»»
March 16, 2016 - Texas natives Breaking Southwest release their debut single, "Ghost Town," on Friday. The trio, who are signed to Nash Records, also will appear during South By Southwest on the Nash Live Stage March 16 in Austin before heading to Dallas on March 17 to open for RaeLynn on the NASH Next Tour stop at The House of Blues.... »»»
March 15, 2016 - Kix Brooks makes his living outdoors - playing music. But Brooks also will try making a living from cooking outdoors with his first cookbook. "Cookin' It With Kix: The Art of Celebrating and The Fun of Outdoor Cooking " will be out on Aug. 30 through W Publishing Group. Written with long-time radio... »»»
March 15, 2016 - Thomas Rhett is no longer number one on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart for the week ending March 26. That's because Cole Swindell's "You Should Be Here" took over for Rhett's "Die a Happy Man," which fell to second. Joey + Rory's "Hymns" topped the Top Country Albums chart, taking over for Chris... »»»
March 14, 2016 - Martina McBride will get "Reckless" in April. That's because her new CD will drop on April 29 on a new label for her, Nash Icon. The label was formed by Big Machine Label Group for established artists. McBride debuted the music video for Reckless" with director Jeff Venable.... »»»
March 14, 2016 - The Trio - Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt, and Emmylou Harris - will have their work see the light of day later this year with previously unreleased material. The group released two albums together, "Trio" (1987) and "Trio II" (1999), selling more than 5 million copies worldwide and winning 3 Grammys.... »»»
March 14, 2016 - Levi Hummon will debut his self-titled five-song EP on April 1. Hummon, the son of songwriter Marcus Hummon (Dixie Chicks' "Cowboy Take Me Away" and Rascal Flatts' "Bless the Broken Road"), contributed to four of the five tracks on the Jimmy Robbins-release on Valory. In 2014, Hummon caught the... »»»
March 14, 2016 - Thomas Rhett will head back to Europe in November for a string of dates. Rhett gigged at the C2C MainStage show in London this past weekend. Rhett kicks off his international shows Nov. 9 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, at Mandela Hall and will continue the run with stops slated in England, Ireland,... »»»
March 13, 2016 - Joey + Rory will have the top selling country disc on Billboard when the charts are out on Tuesday. "Hymns" went from 10th to 6th on the overall top 200 chart with 45,000 units sold, a 35-percent jump. Joey Feek died on March 4 of cancer at 40. The disc, of course, will be first on the country chart.... »»»
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March 11, 2016 - Randy Houser goes the modern and more country leaning sounds - staying away from bro country - on"Fired Up," an hour-long, 17-song CD. The disc is his first since 2013's "How Country Feels." "We Went" and "Song Number 7" were the first two singles from the Derek George-produced set. This is Houser's fourth release.... »»»
March 11, 2016 - Canadian artist Daniel Romano will venture into new sounds with his upcoming CD, "Mosey," out May 27 on New West Records. The new disc falls across several genres, according to his label. Romano' last CD "If I've Only One Time Askin'," currently nominated for a Juno Award (Canadian Grammy) for Adult... »»»
March 10, 2016 - Texas veteran singer Jack Ingram signed with Rounder Records, the label announced Thursday. Ingram recently completed recording his debut for the label, "Midnight Motel," and eighth overall. The CD will be out in June and is his first since his 2009 smash "Big Drums & High Hopes.... »»»
March 10, 2016 - Garth Brooks said today that he would release a new album this summer. Brooks indicated in a Facebook posting that he had planned on releasing new material sooner than that. "I was not confident in my own writing...it is a muscle and if you don't use it, you just can't turn it back on again...it takes time...... »»»
March 9, 2016 - Texas trio Midland signed with Big Machine Label Group. The band apparently has been in the studio recording an EP, they said on their Facebook page. The page cited "another incredible week of work in the studio with @shanemcanally & @joshosborne." Both McAnally and Osborne are leading songwriters,... »»»
March 9, 2016 - Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Tim McGraw, Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton were added to the lineup of artists scheduled to perform at the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards, it was announced today. The ceremony, co-hosted by Bryan and Dierks Bentley, will be broadcast live from MGM Grand Garden Arena in... »»»
March 8, 2016 - Chris Stapleton and Thomas Rhett continue enjoying life at the top of the Billboard charts for the week ending March 19. Stapleton is first on the Top Country Albums chart with "Traveller," while Rhett has a stranglehold on the Hot Country Songs chart with "Die a Happy Man." Cole Swindell was second on... »»»
March 8, 2016 - Blake Shelton released the first single this morning from his next album. "Came Here to Forget," a mid-tempo song, was released to country radio and will be on his 12th disc. ""I've had a lot of music over the years but I don't think I've ever had a song before that's such a direct look into my life.... »»»
March 7, 2016 - Rascal Flatts, which wrapped its second Vegas residency this weekend at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, will go back out on the road this summer on the Rascal Flatts: Rhythm and Roots Tour. The shows start in Charlotte, N.C. on June 17. The trio invited Kelsea Ballerini and Chris Lane to open the shows.... »»»
March 7, 2016 - Josh Kelley signed a new record deal with Sugar Hill. A new album is expected out this spring. Kelley already has released eight CDs, including some on the pop end when he was on Hollywood Records. Kelley last put out an album five years ago and a semi-hit with "Georgia Clay," which made the top 20 in 2010.... »»»
March 7, 2016 - The Brooks & Dunn shows with Reba McEntire are adding nine more shows in July in Las Vegas. The new shows will be July 12, 15, 16, 19, 22, 23, 26, 29 and 30, all starting at 7:30 p.m. The Colosseum at Caesars Palace will host the concerts. Tickets go on sale to the public this Friday, March 11 at 10 a.m. Pacific.... »»»
March 7, 2016 - Kenny Chesney is back in the studio recording new music, his publicist said today. While no firm date was given, look for new music this spring. "You have to take time to live and breathe, to fill up your tanks to be creative," said Chesney. "Otherwise, you're just on a treadmill churning out what... »»»
March 6, 2016 - The country music community paid its respects to Joey Feek, who died of cervical cancer on Friday at 40. Acts ranging from Brad Paisley to Carrie Underwood expressed their feelings in numerous postings on Twitter about Feek, who was one-half of the duo Joey + Rory with her husband.... »»»
March 6, 2016 - Chris Stapleton continued his domination of the Billboard country charts with "Traveller," one of two country discs on the Billboard top 10. "Traveller" was seventh with 43,000 units sold, down 17 percent. The duo Joey + Rory rounded out the top 10 with "Hymns," which came out in February.... »»»
March 5, 2016 - Joey Feek, one-half of the duo of Joey + Rory, died Friday at 40 of cancer. Her fight against cancer was well-pubilcized thanks in large part to a blog kept by her husband, Rory. The duo were best known for the song "Cheater Cheater" and also recorded religious music as well. "My wife's greatest... »»»
March 4, 2016 - Loretta Lynn returns with her first album in a dozen years, while Granger Smith makes his full-length label debut. Lynn is out with "Full Circle," her first since 2004's "Van Lear Rose." John Carter Cash and Patsy Lynn Russell co-produced the 14 songs, which includes new songs, covers and re-recordings.... »»»
March 4, 2016 - Kane Brown makes his label debut with "Chapter 1," a five-song EP from the Georgian set for release March 18. The collection includes Brown's debut radio single and viral fan favorite "Used To Love You Sober." Brown four of the songs for his RCA Nashville release. He signed with the label in January.... »»»
March 4, 2016 - Sturgill Simpson will release his major label debut, "A Sailor's Guide to Earth" on April 15 on Atlantic. The first single, "Brace For Impact (Live A Little)," is premiering today and can be heard at Simpson's web site. Simpson, 38, will kick off his 2016 tour this spring, including shows in Austin,... »»»
March 3, 2016 - The Avett Brothers and Kellie Pickler are among the artists who will join the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame this year, it was announce today. Rhiannon Giddens and the Carolina Chocolate Drops, the string band from North Carolina, also will join the club. Giddens launched a solo career last year.... »»»
March 3, 2016 - Jake Owen's new single "American Country Love Song" premiered on iHeart and other stations today and will be hitting all digital retailers tonight The song is the second single from a forthcoming album. "Real Life" came out in May 2015, but only reached 17 on the Billboard country charts.... »»»
March 2, 2016 - Luke Bryan said today he would add a second Boston area stadium gig in July. Bryan said on his web site, "A second show has now been added in Boston at Gillette Stadium on July 15 due to an overwhelming demand for tickets." The stadium is actually in Foxboro, Mass., a bit south of Boston.... »»»
March 2, 2016 - Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, Sam Hunt and Kelsea Ballerini will perform on the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards, it was announced today. The ceremony, co-hosted by Luke Bryan and Bentley, is produced for television by dick clark productions and will be broadcast live from MGM Grand Garden Arena in... »»»
March 1, 2016 - Another week, but same results on the Billboard country charts. That means Thomas Rhett is first on the Hot Country Songs chart with "Die a Happy Man" and Chris Stapleton first with "Traveller" on the Top Country Album chart for the week ending March 12. On the songs chart, Carrie Underwood remained... »»»
March 1, 2016 - Sarah Jarosz will release her fourth album, "Undercurrent," on June 17 on Sugar Hill Records. The disc features a more minimalist production, focused on Jarosz's upfront vocals, according to Jarosz's publicist. "Undercurrent" was co-produced by Jarosz and engineer/producer Gary Paczosa.... »»»
March 1, 2016 - Merle Haggard is off the road again due to his continuing battle with pneumonia. "Due to a persistent reoccurring bout of double pneumonia, Merle Haggard is currently receiving treatment at a hospital in CA and has had to postpone his concert dates in March," his publicist said in a press release.... »»»
March 1, 2016 - William Michael Morgan, on the charts now with "I Met a Girl," will release an ep later this month. The disc, out March 18 on Warner, will include six songs, including the single, which was originally penned by Sam Hunt. Morgan, 22, is from Vicksburg, Miss. Songs on the EP are: 1. Vinyl 2. Beer Drinker 3.... »»»
March 1, 2016 - The Gentle Giant, aka Don Williams, announced today he was retiring after six decades. "It's time to hang my hat up and enjoy some quiet time at home. I'm so thankful for my fans, my friends and my family for their everlasting love and support," said Williams, 76. Williams first gained musical... »»»
March 1, 2016 - Fresh off her first release in five years, Lorrie Morgan announced today she would release a greatest hits plus effort this month. "A Picture Of Me - Greatest Hits & More" is out March 18 on Goldenlane Records, a division of Cleopatra Records. The label has recently released new albums by the Oak... »»»
March 1, 2016 - The Band Perry and Big Machine Label Group announced Tuesday they are splitting. TBP, who were on the Republic Nashville label of Big Machine, said on Facebook, "We and Big Machine Label Group have made a mutual decision to bring our working relationship to a close. We are grateful for 6 years of the... »»»