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Country Star Trivia


Comstock/ThinkstockWhat is Blake Shelton's middle name? ANSWER: Tollison.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Miranda Lambert Says There's "Something for Everybody" on Her New Album, "Platinum"


Sony Music NashvilleMiranda Lambert still has plenty of "sassy" moments on her upcoming album, Platinum, but there are plenty of vulnerable moments. On "Bathroom Sink," Miranda sings about dealing with body image issues, and "Priscilla" finds her addressing the challenges of having a famous husband, Blake Shelton.

"I always try to make my records be about where I am right now," Miranda says. "I'm 30 years old. I'm happily married, but I still have problems good and bad. I face everyday life as a 30-year-old girl. So, I wrote a lot about that."

Some other tracks, like the title cut and "Little Red Wagon," show off Miranda's lighter side.

She says, "There's some humor. I think that comes from my husband. You know, he really has helped me find my sense of humor. Clearly, he has a good one."

Miranda never apologizes for writing from a female point of view, but she thinks men will enjoy listening to Platinum, too.

Says Miranda, "I feel like there's something for everybody on this record. It's very heartfelt. It's got some deep stuff and some stuff that is relatable for everybody, hopefully."

The lead single from Platinum, "Automatic," is already a top 10 hit. Look for the full-length album in stores June 3.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Carrie Underwood Named to "TIME" 100 List of the World's Most Influential People


Sony Music NashvilleCarrie Underwood has made TIME magazine's annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.  Not only did she make the list, she's included in the category "Icons."

In an accompanying essay written about Carrie by Brad Paisley, her CMA Awards co-host says, “Not only has she earned her place [in country music], she's raised the bar: a prolific songwriter, a trend-setter, and an Opry member.  But it's her decency as a person that is so impressive.”    

Brad adds, "So many young girls want to be just like her. In that sense, I see hope for the world. If I had a daughter, nothing would make me happier than to hear her say she wanted to grow up to be like Carrie Underwood."

Carrie is also set to perform at the TIME 100 Gala, April 29 at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York. The black-tie event will include past and present TIME 100 list members. Previous attendees have included Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Bill Clinton and Taylor Swift.

The TIME 100 issue is out Friday.

Copyright 2014 AC News Radio

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Nashville Notes


Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockLuke Bryan's album, Crash My Party, is back at #1 on Billboard's Country Albums tally in its 37th week on the chart.

Eric Paslay performs a cover of the Sheryl Crow song, "I Shall Believe," on Ram Country on Yahoo Music. Check it out at RamCountry.Music.Yahoo.com.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Chris Young Previews Brand-New Live Show in Nashville


RCA NashvilleChris Young hosted a preview of his brand-new live show for a few members of the press Wednesday afternoon in Nashville. The hit-filled set kicked off with the title track from his latest album, A.M., and continued with the single from that album, "Aw Naw" and "Who I Am with You."

The massive stage features high-tech LED screens and state-of-the-art lighting, making this Chris's biggest tour production ever. Hits like "Gettin' You Home," "Voices" and "You" rounded out the set list.

Look for Chris to take his new show out on the road this summer with a mix of headlining shows and dates opening for Dierks Bentley. A complete list of tour dates is posted at ChrisYoungCountry.com.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Is Jerrod Niemann Secretly Writing Songs for a New Garth Brooks Project?


Sony Music NashvilleGarth Brooks is expected to announce plans for a massive world tour in the coming months, and he's hinted there might be some new music to go along with the trek. Since Jerrod Niemann had a hand in writing several of Garth's singles, including 2005's "Good Ride Cowboy," we wondered if Jerrod might know something about Garth's recording plans.

"When I chat with him, I don't hit him up for a bunch of details," Jerrod tells ABC News Radio. "You know, I wouldn't probably trust myself with any details 'cause I get so excited."

While Jerrod doesn't have any insight on what or when Garth is recording, he is just as excited as everyone else about Garth's return to the concert trail.

Says Jerrod, "Any day that Garth Brooks cares to make music is a good day for everybody. So, yes. We all love Garth, and we can't wait for him to get back out there."

As for Jerrod's career, he just celebrated the #1 success of his gold-certified single, "Drink to That All Night" with a party on Music Row in Nashville this week.  It's the lead release from Jerrod's latest album, High Noon, available now.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Craig Morgan Challenging Fans to Go-Kart Race at 2014 Fan Club Party


Black River EntertainmentCraig Morgan is challenging fans to a go-kart race at his "Wake Up Racing You" fan club party, coming up June 4 in Nashville. The event takes place that morning at the Music City Indoor Karting & Entertainment Center. Fans will be treated to an acoustic performance and a light breakfast in addition to the race.

Go to EventBrite.com to purchase tickets.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Miranda Lambert's 2013 Year in Review Going on Display in New Country Music Hall of Fame Exhibit


Country Music Hall of FameThe new Country Music Hall of Fame exhibit, "Miranda Lambert: Backstage Access," opens May 16 with a focus on what Miranda did in 2013. Items going on display include outfits from last year's CMA Awards, ACM Awards and CMA Music Festival as well as a costume she wore on her Locked & Reloaded Tour.

The outfits Miranda wore in her "Mama's Broken Heart" video and the "We Were Us" video with Keith Urban are also going on display. Miranda's own tweets accompany each item to tell the story of Miranda's life last year.

For more information, go to CountryMusicHallofFame.org.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Rascal Flatts Performs for Patients and Families at Nashville Children's Hospital


Big Machine RecordsRascal Flatts performed for young patients and their families at Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt Tuesday in Nashville. After singing their hits "Fast Cars and Freedom," "My Wish" and "Rewind," the Flatts posed for photos with every family in the audience.

Over the last 10 years, Rascal Flatts has donated more than $3 million to the Children's Hospital. They are now focused on raising funds for research on premature babies.

Lead singer Gary LeVox tells The Tennessean, "We branched out and took on the neonatal thing for premature children because it's the only thing medically that they don't know how to stop. When we first heard that, that there's no rhyme or reason for babies born premature, that was a goal and we're on our way."

On the music front, Rascal Flatts' new album, Rewind, comes out May 13.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Grand Ole Opry Kicking Off CMA Music Festival Week with Carrie Underwood and Josh Turner


Photo Credit: Chris HolloThe Grand Ole Opry has a big show planned for Tuesday, June 3 to kick off CMA Music Festival week. Carrie Underwood, Josh Turner, Jennifer Nettles and Charlie Worsham are on the bill for two shows that night at the Grand Ole Opry House. Terri Clark will be there  as well, to celebrate her 10th anniversary as a Grand Ole Opry member.

The party continues that Friday, June 6 with Rascal Flatts, Sara Evans and more set to perform on the Opry. Go to Opry.com for more info.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Country Star Trivia


Comstock/ThinkstockWhich Rascal Flatts cast member made a cameo on ABC's Nashville this season? ANSWER: Jay DeMarcus.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Kacey Musgraves Shows Her Vulnerable Side on "Keep It to Yourself"


Photo Credit: Kelly Christine MusgravesKacey Musgraves is more vulnerable than ever before on her latest single, "Keep It to Yourself." She wrote the song after a breakup when her ex was trying to tell her he still had feelings for her.

Says Kacey, "You literally have to be the strong person and say, 'Don’t tell me, because it’s just going to rope me back in.' It’s going to create that cycle again. It's just about getting over that hump."

Ultimately, Kacey found love again with her band member, Misa Arriaga, and that relationship wouldn't have happened if she'd gotten roped back into dating her ex.

Looking back, Kacey explains. "Nobody wants to feel naked or uncomfortable, and removing yourself out of a situation that you know is probably not right is really hard, but it’s something that you just have to do."

"Keep It to Yourself" is the latest single from Kacey's Grammy, ACM and CMA Award-winning album Same Trailer Different Park.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

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The Music of "Nashville" Comes to Life on New ABC Concert Special Airing Tonight


ABCThe music of ABC's Nashville is coming to life with the new special, Nashville: On the Record, airing Wednesday night. The hour-long show features Nashville cast members Hayden Panettiere, Charles Esten, Jonathan Jackson, Clare Bowen, Chris Carmack and more performing live at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium. Several of the stars have been performing around Music City and on the Grand Ole Opry in the past few years. Nashville: On the Record gives fans outside Tennessee a chance to get that live concert experience.

Jonathan Jackson, who plays Avery Barkley, says, "It's an opportunity for people to see the cast in an actual, live environment perform the songs, which is really fun for us."

Charles Easton plays Deacon Claybourne on Nashville. He adds, "You're gonna see songs from the actual Bluebird where they're talking in a round with the writers of these great songs that we get to do on our show. And then as they're talking, then we'll throw it over, and we'll go to the Ryman, and you'll see the cast members performing the different songs."

There are several collaborations among the show's stars on the special, which is the favorite part of being on Nashville for Chris Carmack, who plays Will Lexington.

"When things really start to gel and really start to feel a little bit magical is when you get to sing with the other cast members," Chris tells ABC News Radio. "There's also something magical about being able to sing harmonies with somebody. It's a very intimate thing to do. When your voices meld together, in some ways, it's better than any scene you can do together."

Nashville: On the Record airs Wednesday night at 10 ET on ABC.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Nashville Notes


Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockWynonna and her band, The Big Noise, will perform at the 24th Annual William Shatner Priceline.com Hollywood Charity Horse Show April 26 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center. Proceeds go to special-needs children charities in Los Angeles.

Keith Urban discovers American Idol host Ryan Seacrest jamming on the bass prior to showtime in the latest installment of the Idle Chatter video series. American Idol airs Wednesday and Thursday nights on FOX.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

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Is Taylor Swift Selling Her Mansion in Rhode Island?


ABC/Jon LeMayEver since Taylor Swift shelled out a reported $17 million a year ago for a huge mansion in Rhode Island's tony Watch Hill neighborhood, the home has been the site of much drama, from random trespassers, to angry locals accusing her of blocking access to the beach.  Now, word is she's looking to unload the 11,000 square-foot home.

The rumor evidently started when a reporter for the local Rhode Island paper The Westerly Sun tweeted, "Is Taylor Swift's Watch Hill mansion for sale? I'm hearing that but I can't confirm."  This, of course, set off all kinds of speculation from various real estate blogs, all noting the sprawling home's eight bedrooms, 10 1/2 baths, reception rooms, 45-foot-long sun porch, five-car heated garage, balconies, swimming pool and sweeping views.

A rep for Taylor did not immediately return emails from ABC News Radio seeking comment on whether or not the home is for sale.

In addition to the Rhode Island mansion, Taylor also owns a condo in Nashville, a place in Los Angeles, and a newly-purchased pad in Manhattan.  She has definitely enjoyed the Rhode Island mansion, though, telling Rolling Stone, "Man, Rhode Island's a good place. It's a really good place. I've loved really being with my girlfriends a lot [there]. Like, there have been a lot of kitchen dance parties with my girlfriends."

Meanwhile, the singer may have moved on to greener pastures...or at least sandier beaches.  She tweeted a photo of herself on Monday walking along a beautiful beach wearing a green bikini, with the caption, "Looking for Easter eggs."  It's not clear where the photo was taken.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Eli Young Band's Mike Eli Celebrates Wedding Anniversary Eating Roast by Candlelight in Front of the TV


Republic NashvilleEli Young Band front man Mike Eli didn't spring for a fancy night out to celebrate his recent wedding anniversary. Instead, Mike and his wife celebrated very simply at home.

He tells Country Aircheck, "We celebrated in front of the television with two bar stools, a roast and a candlelight on the bar stools in front of us."

Since Mike is out on the road so much touring, we're sure his wife enjoyed the quiet night at home. Eli Young Band continues their opening spot on Darius Rucker's True Believers tour this weekend with shows in Florida and Alabama.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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George Strait Adds June 5 Stop in Hidalgo, TX to The Cowboy Rides Away Tour


EB Media PRGeorge Strait has added a June 5 show in Hidalgo, TX to his The Cowboy Rides Away Tour schedule. The concert at State Farm Arena is just two days before his massive tour-ending concert at Dallas's AT&T Stadium on June 7. Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, Faith Hill, Alan Jackson, Eric Church, Vince Gill and Martina McBride are on the bill for the sold-out Dallas date.

Tickets for the June 5 date go on sale to the public Friday, May 2.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Rascal Flatts Performing at "Rewind" Album Launch Party in Los Angeles


CMARascal Flatts will perform an acoustic album launch concert for their latest release, Rewind, on the release date, May 13. The show takes place at the Avalon nightclub in Los Angeles, and only Citi card holders can purchase tickets at CitiPrivatePass.com.

Flatts lead singer Gary LeVox says, "We're immensely proud of our new album and I can't think of a better way to celebrate than with some of our closest fans. We can't wait for everyone to hear Rewind and look forward to kicking things off with Citi in Los Angeles next month."

Fans attending the show will enjoy a wine pairing with each songs based on the track's tempo and lyrics. Rascal Flatts' new album features the hit title track.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Ronnie Milsap, Hank Cochran & Mac Wiseman Are Newest Country Music Hall of Fame Inductees


Country Music Hall of Fame and MuseumThe latest inductees into the Country Music Hall of Fame have been announced: Ronnie Milsap, Hank Cochran, and Mac Wiseman.  The inductees were revealed Tuesday morning in Nashville.

Soulful keyboardist Milsap, who's blind, was of the biggest crossover country performers of the '70s and '80s, thanks to hits like "I Wouldn't Have Missed It for the World," "(There's) No Gettin' Over Me," "Stranger in My House," "Lost in the Fifties Tonight," and "Any Day Now."  He's won six Grammys and scored forty #1 country hit singles.  Milsap's name was announced by Hunter Hayes.

The late Hank Cochran is the Songwriter inductee this year.  A recording artist in his own right, Cochran also penned hits like Patsy Cline's "I Fall to Pieces," Ray Price's "Make the World Go Away," George Strait's "Ocean Front Property" and "The Chair," and Ronnie Milsap's "Don't You Ever Get Tired (of Hurting Me)."

Mac Wiseman is the Veterans Era inductee this year.  The bluegrass singer is a solo artist, but also served as a member of the Foggy Mountain Boys, along with Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, and played with Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys.   He's nicknamed "The Voice with a Heart."

All three performers will be officially inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in a ceremony later this year.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Billy Currington Gets Amped-Up Performing "We Are Tonight" in Concert


Mercury NashvilleBilly Currington's latest single choice, "We Are Tonight," is a direct result of his recent leap to arena headliner status. Billy loved what he calls the "amped-up energy" of the song, and the carefree lyrics appealed to him as well.

Says Billy, "It made me think of football games and the summer rolling down the window, driving down the beach boulevard. Everything that the song states took me back to my younger years."

Billy will be playing "We Are Tonight" at his shows in Alabama and North Carolina this weekend. Go to BillyCurrington.com to see where he's playing this summer.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

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