Apr 18

Carrie Underwood’s new album “Cry Pretty” coming September 14

Randee St. Nicholas/Capitol Records NashvilleAfter debuting her new single, “Cry Pretty,” on Sunday’s ACM Awards, Carrie Underwood has now revealed that it’s also the title track of her upcoming album.

Cry Pretty, her first for Capitol Records Nashville, will arrive September 14.  Carrie co-produced the album with David Garcia.  You can watch a trailer for the album now on YouTube.

In a statement, Carrie says, “At this point in my career, I feel stronger and more creative than ever.  I think you can hear that in this new album.  It’s emotional, it’s soulful, it’s real, and we also have some fun on there too.  I hope everyone loves it as much as I have loved making it.”

 

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Apr 18

Will Jason Aldean follow his third Entertainer of the Year trophy with a #1 album?

BBR Music GroupJason Aldean started the week with a major performance on the 53rd Academy of Country Music Awards,  followed up shortly after by winning his third consecutive Entertainer of the Year trophy.

Since big TV appearances typically turn into big album sales, Rearview Town — Jason’s new record that came out Friday — should be on track for a huge debut.

“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t pay attention to that stuff,” Jason admits. “But, you know, I think ultimately, you know, we just want people to listen to the record.”

“You know, we spent a lot of time working on those albums and it just so happened we released the album on ACM weekend because we knew we were going to be doing a lot of press that would help promote it, all that kind of stuff,” he explains.

Should Rearview Town debut at #1 on both the country albums chart and the all-genre Billboard 200, that’ll be the icing on the cake.

“Entertainer of the Year is pretty big,” Jason says. “If we end the week with a #1 album to top it off, I mean, I don’t know that it gets any better than that.”

Jason’s previous record, They Don’t Know, topped both the country and the all-genre chart after its first week.

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Apr 17

Kelsea Ballerini reveals the relationship advice she got from Keith Urban

Ben Ritter Kelsea Ballerini will spend the majority of her summer on the road as part of Keith Urban‘s 2018 Graffiti U World Tour, and Keith’s already passed along plenty of wisdom to the young star.

In an interview with Elite Daily, the “I Hate Love Songs” singer says she looks up to Keith when it comes to career and relationship advice.

“The best kind of artists are the ones that change but stay the same,” she tells the publication. “It’s hard to do and I think that’s why a lot of artists have a shorter career… It’s something that I want to learn from people like Taylor [Swift] and Keith [Urban] and people that somehow reinvent themselves but stay the same.”

This isn’t the only thing she’s learned from the “Coming Home” singer, though. Kelsea says in the past, she and her husband Morgan Evans took advice from Keith and his wife, Nicole Kidman, on how to make their relationship work.

“We have a two-week rule. We’ve only broken it once. We learned it from Keith and Nicole; they have it,” she explains. That rule states that you don’t go for more than two weeks without seeing one another, and Kelsea says it’s tough, but important.

“I just think as much as we are in this phase of our careers where it’s like, building the foundation and it’s really important to be busy and to be doing as much as we can, obviously our relationship comes first…This is definitely the year of putting in the effort.”

Kelsea will get some up-close and personal schooling on how Keith reinvents himself night after night on his summer tour, which kicks off on June 15.

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Apr 17

Kenny Chesney’s new single is off to a great start: “Sometimes you hit a nerve”

Allister AnnKenny Chesney knew he had to record “Get Along” as soon as he heard it, and the response the singer is getting to his new single reaffirms his belief in its message.

“In every conversation I find myself in, some part of the sentiment of this song just keeps coming up,” Kenny says in a statement. “Everyone, no matter what they believe, is tired of the angriness and divisiveness that’s out there… It seems like getting along is brain surgery, something beyond normal people, but it’s not.”  

He continues, “So no matter what you believe, no matter what you think, at the end of the day, people just want harmony, friendship, joy. This song is the best reminder of how simple this is that I’ve heard in years.”

Country fans are soaking up the song’s positive message, exemplified by the lyrics “Get along while we can/Always give love the upper hand.” Since its release April 6, “Get Along” has racked up two million first-week streams. It’s currently number one on Billboard‘s Top Country Digital Song chart.

“Sometimes you hit a nerve,” he says. “I never think I’m the only one feeling something, whether it’s the crush of the news or the growing anger that pits people against each other.”

“I don’t know where it comes from, but sometimes I think if you’ll just show people what’s happening, something they may miss from being so churned up, they might just exhale and find some peace.”

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Apr 17

Darius Rucker announces ninth annual Darius and Friends benefit concert

ABC/Image Group LADarius Rucker will return to Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium on June 4 for his ninth annual benefit concert for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Dubbed Darius and Friends, the concert will include performances by the country singer and some of his famous pals.

“When you see first-hand what this organization can do for families, it’s remarkable,” Darius says in a statement. “Over the years we’ve met so many survivors, families of patients and volunteers whose lives have been changed by St. Jude. It’s one of my favorite shows of the year.”

An official artist lineup will be announced in the coming weeks. In previous years, the singer has been joined by artists including Luke BryanLuke CombsRandy HouserCharles Kelley of Lady Antebellum, and Kenny Rogers, among others.

Pre-sale tickets for the concert go on sale beginning today, while tickets to the general public are available April 20 via Ticketmaster. In the past nine years, Darius has helped to raise over $1 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

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Apr 17

Sam Hunt, Chris Stapleton lead 2018 Billboard Music Awards country nominees

Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images via ABCThe full list of nominees for the 2018 Billboard Music Awards has been revealed, and Chris Stapleton and Sam Hunt lead the country nominees, with five nods each.

Sam finds himself nominated for both Top Country Artist and Top Male Artist, as well as Top Country Song for “Body Like a Back Road.” He also receives two nods in the all-genre categories of the Billboard Chart Achievement Award and Top Selling Song, for “Body Like a Back Road.”

Chris, meanwhile, is nominated in the Top Country Artist and Top Country Male Artist categories, as well as Top Country Album for From A Room: Volume 1. His all-genre nods include Top Selling Album with From A Room: Volume 1, and Top Billboard 200 Artist.

Florida Georgia Line‘s Tyler Hubbard and Brian Kelley have three nods in the Top Country Duo/Group Artist, Top Country Tour and Top Country Song categories. Additional nominees include Kelsea BalleriniMiranda Lambert and Maren Morris, who are nominated for Top Country Female Artist, and Kane Brown and Luke Combs, who are nominated as Top Country Artist.

The 2018 Billboard Music Awards air May 20 on NBC.

Here a list of the country nominees: 

Top Country Artist
Kane Brown
Luke Combs
Sam Hunt
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

Top Country Male Artist
Sam Hunt
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

Top Country Female Artist
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Maren Morris

Top Country Duo/Group Artist
Florida Georgia Line
Old Dominion
Zac Brown Band

Top Country Tour
Luke Bryan
Florida Georgia Line
Tim McGraw & Faith Hill

Top Country Album
Kane Brown, Kane Brown
Luke Combs, This One’s For You
Thomas Rhett, Life Changes
Chris Stapleton, From A Room: Volume 1
Brett Young, Brett Young

Top Country Song
Kane Brown ft. Lauren Alaina, “What Ifs”
Sam Hunt, “Body Like A Back Road”
Dustin Lynch, “Small Town Boy”
Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line, “Meant To Be”
Brett Young, “In Case You Didn’t Know”

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Apr 17

Blake Shelton joins Gwen Stefani on ‘Hella Good’ duet at ACM Awards after party

Photo by John Shearer/Getty Images via ABCFollowing the ACM Awards Sunday, Blake Shelton treated country fans to a surprise pop up show at House of Blues Las Vegas, and also brought along a few of his famous friends.

With a simple tweet Sunday evening, the “I’ll Name the Dogs” singer let fans know that he’d be hosting a first-come, first-served free concert. While fans rushed over to the venue, Luke BryanKelly ClarksonToby Keith and Gwen Stefani also headed to the location for an unforgettable night of music.

The most memorable moment came when Blake’s girlfriend took the stage for an energetic performance of “Hollaback Girl” and then followed up with No Doubt‘s “Hella Good,” thanks to a request from Blake. Gwen said she’d be open to perform the song but only if he would sing along with her. Blake obliged and joined in on the chorus of “Hella Good,” and also showed off a few new dance moves, much to the crowd’s approval.

Blake attended the ACMs earlier that night with Gwen, where he took the stage as a performer and was nominated for Single Record of the Year for “I’ll Name the Dogs.”

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Apr 17

Sam Hunt explains his absence from the ACM Awards

ABC/Mark LevineSam Hunt won Single of the Year at the ACM Awards Sunday evening for his 34-week number-one, “Body Like a Back Road,” but when presenters Dustin Lynch and Nancy O’Dell called his name, Sam was nowhere to be found.  No worries — an Instagram post explains his absence.

The post shows Sam wearing a formal suit, next to another man clad in a tux.

“Thank you Academy Of Country Music for the award for Single of the Year,” Sam writes. “I was celebrating the marriage of my long time friend and tour manager John Worthington. This made the weekend extra special. See y’all next year!”

Sam penned “Body Like a Back Road” with Zach CrowellJosh Osborne and Shane McAnally.  The song saw massive chart success last year when it spent an unprecedented 34 straight weeks atop Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart, breaking Florida Georgia Line‘s previous 24-week record for “Cruise” in 2013.

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Apr 17

Listen now: Sugarland shares “Bigger,” title track from upcoming album

BMLGSugarland will release their first album in nearly eight years on June 8, but you can hear the project’s title track now.

Co-written by Kristian Bush and Jennifer Nettles, “Bigger” is a triumphant track with hand-clap rhythms and slick production that has Jennifer urging you to not give up.

“We were born for better days/We’ll find a way/Yeah, we’re gonna be bigger/Don’t give up,” Sugarland sings on the chorus.

“Bigger” is the first hint of new music from the band following the release of the album’s lead single, “Still the Same,” which the duo dropped late last year.

“Our hopefulness and our sparkiness and our joy is one of the things I think we do uniquely well, especially in the country format,” Jennifer says. “We offer that in a unique way.”

Sugarland is expected to drop another new song later this week. That song, titled “Babe,” was written by Taylor Swift and Train‘s Pat Monahan.

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Apr 17

Celebrating “Singles” while drinking doubles: Jordan Davis cheers first #1 hit

ABC RadioThere’s no doubt about it: Newcomer Jordan Davis is coming off one of the biggest weekends of his entire life. When he was in Las Vegas for this weekend’s ACMs, the Home State singer found out his debut single, “Singles You Up,” is now the #1 song in the country.

“Goodness gracious. I never would’ve dreamed this would’ve happened,” he reacted. “But I am very blessed, very grateful. What a better way to celebrate a #1 song [and] celebrate country music? Man, I am just tickled to death.”

And, since the Louisiana native called his debut album Home State, he couldn’t wait to tell the home folks about his first #1.

“I called my parents this morning,” Jordan explained, “told ’em about the news, and they are just so happy. Got to call my brother and tell him, which was really, really cool. And I need to call my sister. That’s the only one I haven’t called, so I’m probably gonna be in trouble.”

“It’s unbelievable. I really am, I’m at a loss for words,” he added. “It hasn’t really sunk in yet.”

Jordan admits the effects of all his celebrating in Sin City will soon be sinking in as well.

“I don’t know if it’s stopped,” he confessed. “Like, I woke up this morning, and I just kinda got right back on it. Tomorrow’s gonna be pretty rough!”

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