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Alabama spearheads tornado relief gig

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 – Alabama is spearheading a tornado relief concert for its home state in June. Dierks Bentley, Luke Bryan, and Brad Paisley are among those who will sing at the fest.

"BAMA RISING: A Benefit Concert for Alabama Tornado Recovery," presented by Verizon, will take place at Birmingham's BJCC Arena on Tuesday, June 14. The effort will help those affected by the April 27 tornados in Alabama.

Those appearing include Rodney Atkins, Bo Bice, Luke Bryan, Sheryl Crow, Sara Evans, Taylor Hicks, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Montgomery Gentry, David Nail, Jake Owen, Kellie Pickler, Darius Rucker and Ashton Shepherd. Jay Barker, a former football player at Alabama and a radio personality will appear as well. He is Evan's husband.

Alabama's Randy Owen said, "My hope is that this will bring happiness and help to my fellow citizens in Alabama. I believe it's extremely important that we do this benefit, and I want everyone in the state to feel like they are part of it. I hope we all can pull together to help get through the worst natural disaster I've ever seen in Alabama. I appreciate my friends in country music, everyone that's been involved, and anyone that's helped in any way."

Kate Nielsen, president of the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham, said, "We are pleased to serve as the philanthropic partner for the talented artists who are committed to our state's recovery through the Bama Rising concert. A sell-out crowd will help the Bama Rising team raise significant dollars for long-term recovery efforts across Alabama and show our citizens that we are committed to their future."

Tickets will go on sale to the general public this Friday, May 20 at 11 a.m. central at www.ticketmaster.com. Ticket prices will range from $25 to $150.

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With its 15-song "American Christmas," Alabama covers nearly every nook and cranny in the holiday album spectrum. And it's just as good, as it is complete. The song that hits first, and hits hardest, is "First Christmas Without Daddy." This loving remembrance for a deceased father asks sadly, "Who's gonna lead the family prayer?" As Christmas is as much about family gatherings, as it is about all the popular sights and sounds, Randy Owen both remembers his »»»
Southern Drawl CD review - Southern Drawl
With all the belly aching about country music not staying true to its roots, maybe instead of a new entry into the landscape, it is time for a re-entry. Many hoped that Alabama's latest, "Southern Drawl" would be the cure to what ails the traditionalists. But the iconic band tried to walk a very fine line on its first release since 2001's "When It All Goes South." Back in their Eighties heyday, the group put the country rock sound on the map. »»»
Angels Among Us Hymns & Gospel Favorites CD review - Angels Among Us Hymns & Gospel Favorites
The threads of faith and family are intrinsically woven throughout the fibers of country music, but the results of such albums are not always successful, with some records feeling dry and inspired while others take the bull by the horns and really engage the material. Alabama's latest offering, "Angels Among Us: Hymns & Gospel Favorites," falls into the latter category. That's not to say that Alabama reinvents the wheel here, but, rather, that they tackle the source material »»»
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: No matter what you call it, The Cadillac Three are really good – On the face of it, Kelby Ray's omnipotent pedal steel lines weaving in and out of The Cadillac Three's songs would make you willing to get the family farm the trio was a country music band. In reality, that would be stretching the already hyper-elastic boundaries of what constitutes country these days. Yes, there was a country vibe from the... »»»
Concert Review: Alaina enjoys the difference – Why was this night different from most other nights for Lauren Alaina? For starters, instead of opening in arenas for Blake Shelton, which she's been doing lately, she headlined her own show at a very small, intimate club. That afforded her the chance to stretch out musically and otherwise in a warm, engaging 70-minute set from the country pop singer.... »»»
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