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Tim, Faith set tour mark

Thursday, September 14, 2006 – The just-concluded Soul2Soul II tour of Faith Hill and Tim McGraw became the highest grossing coutry tour of all time.

The tour, which comprised 73 concerts in 55 cities, was the most attended concert tour this year, in any musical genre. Hill and McGraw grossed just shy of $89 million dollars, more than 40 percent of the previous high of $62 million set by Kenny Chesney and is currently the top grossing tour of any musical genre for 2006.

McGraw and Hill were the only country music tour to ever sell-out three consecutive nights at The Staples Center in Los Angeles. The show was the most attended country music tour ever at 17 concert venues, including New York's Madison Square Garden.

The tour concluded with three consecutive performances at Las Vegas' Mandalay Bay. Soul2Soul II started April 21 in Columbus, Ohio. The tour played consecutive dates at 13 concert venues, including New York City, Boston, Seattle, Salt Lake City and Chicago, a record at each venue for country music tours this year.

"We have been blessed over the past several months to have the opportunity to do what it is that we love to do most," said McGraw and Hill in a joint statement. "We've spent time with the most passionate and professional individuals in the business (our crew), we've seen the beauty that is our country and we've been honored to have had the chance to meet so many fans along the way. It's an experience that could be difficult to replicate."

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CD reviews

Damn Country Music CD review - Damn Country Music
Tim McGraw said of his 14th studio album, "Damn Country Music," "It's is all about passion, (taking him back to 1989) "when I came to Nashville to chase my dreams." Country music has richly rewarded him over the past two decades, and he honors the genre's tradition here. The album gets off to a very traditional start with Celtic folk. The flute and skillful acoustic picking on the opener "Here Tonight" bring a Mark Knopfler tune immediately to mind. »»»
Sundown Heaven Town CD review - Sundown Heaven Town
The banjo comes first out of the speakers, the opening strains of "Overrated," the lead-off song on Tim McGraw's latest. But with a "1-2-3-4" count, the mood changes and goes for a more modern country approach. McGraw does about the same on the follow-up "City Lights" with Michael Landau's steely, but rocking lead guitar taking over near the conclusion as it does later hard on "Sick of Me" where the protagonist contemplates a need to turn his life around. »»»
Two Lanes of Freedom CD review - Two Lanes of Freedom
Tim McGraw's debut on Big Machine, "Two Lanes Of Freedom" is his first record since the announcement that he gave up alcohol five years ago and the first since his acrimonious, litigious split from the only label he had ever known, Curb. The new CD literally and symbolically represents a fresh start. If only the material better reflected his new take on life. What is presented here is about as boiler plate as contemporary country gets. The album is a safe play and takes almost no chances. »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: For McCoury, Grisman, music still matters – One condenser microphone, a music stand, a mandolin, rhythm guitar and more than 100 years of bluegrass experience: that's all David Grisman and Del McCoury need to put on a show. It's quite a show, too. The artists' backstories are well known: McCoury was a logger in Lancaster County, Pa., who came to New York City to see Bill... »»»
Concert Review: Ely wears well – Joe Ely is the prototypical rambler. It comes through in his music and in his life. There are lots of elements in the music about travels, riding the rails, small town scenery and getting away from it. In fact, after playing "I'm Gonna Strangle You Shorty" as the first song of his encore, Ely opined, "The only thing I got out of... »»»
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