Oct 17

Maddie & Tae confess they’re feeling some nerves ahead of tonight’s “Artists of the Year” performance with Carrie Underwood

Mercury NashvilleCarrie Underwood won’t hit the road on the Cry Pretty 360 Tour with Maddie & Tae and Runaway June until May, but we’ll get a preview Wednesday night, as all three perform together on the 2018 CMT Artists of the Year special.

Tae Dye says we can expect “lots of harmonies” in a “fun medley.” “I definitely am very intimidated,” she admits.

Maddie Marlow feels much the same, even getting a little starstruck around the “Love Wins” hitmaker.

“It still hasn’t really like sunk in…” Maddie explains. “I still get kind of germy trying to control it around her. ‘Cause we’ve watched her since she was on American Idol… And I’m still just like, ‘Okay, play it cool!’ Like, ‘You’re a professional!'”

Tae has even been second-guessing her wardrobe choice.

“I picked a dress. And I’m like, ‘Why did I pick a short dress? Because I’m going to be standing next to Carrie Underwood and her legs!’ Why did I do that to myself?” Tae asks.

“I went jumpsuit,” Maddie adds. “I’m like, ‘I am not exposing my legs…'”

“Yeah, I’m just going to stand on the very opposite end,” Tae concludes.

Maddie’s thinking a gift may be in order for the duo’s upcoming tour mate.

“I want to bring her like a little goodie basket,” Maddie says, “because she’s maybe… six or seven months pregnant. She needs like some really comfy slippers, maybe some bath bombs.”

Tae suggests a heating pad and doughnuts, before the two remember Carrie is vegan.

“Maybe we can get like a vegan cupcake or something,” Maddie decides. “I bet she would really appreciate that,” she adds as the two laughs.

You can tune in to see Maddie & Tae’s performance with Carrie and Runaway June starting at 8 p.m. ET tonight on CMT.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Eric Church arrives at #1 with “Desperate Man”

EMI NashvilleEric Church debuts at #1 on the Top Country Albums chart this week, after Desperate Man sold 116,000 units in its first seven days of release. That’s enough for Eric’s sixth studio album to also bow at #5 on the all-genre Billboard 200.

Eric’s previous record, 2015’s Mr. Misunderstood, debuted at #3 on the country album chart, selling 76,000 copies after its surprise release during that year’s CMA Awards.

Previously, 2014’s The Outsiders and 2011’s Chief both debuted at #1 on the country tally.

This week, Desperate Man’s title track continues its climb in country’s top fifteen.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Have a seat at “Martina’s Table”: Martina McBride launches new Food Network series

Food NetworkMartina McBride not only has a new Christmas album and a new cookbook coming this month — she also has a new cooking show premiering on Food Network.

The first episode of Martina’s Table is set to air Sunday, November 18 at 12 p.m. ET.

“I’ve always had a passion for cooking and love to cook for my friends and family,” Martina says. “Having a show on Food Network is a dream come true. We’ve filmed the first season and it’s been so fun and exciting to be able to share some of my favorite recipes and stories.”

During the first few episodes, you’ll see Martina make a full Thanksgiving menu, prepare a Mexican-themed birthday celebration, and plan a holiday brunch for famous friends like Faith HillSheryl Crow and Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild and Kimberly Schlapman.

Martina’s second cookbook, Martina’s Kitchen Mix: My Recipe Playlist for Real Life, arrives October 30, just a couple weeks after her new Christmas album, It’s the Holiday Season, which comes out this Friday.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Luke Bryan, Sam Hunt and Jason Aldean saddle up for Stagecoach 2019

GoldenvoiceLuke BryanSam Hunt, and Jason Aldean will headline a who’s who of country music talent next spring at the Stagecoach Festival at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California.

Luke leads the Friday, April 26 lineup, which also includes Cole Swindell and Kane Brown. Sam Hunt returns to play Saturday night, with Luke Combs and Cam also on the bill.

“Stagecoach is hands down one of the best country music festivals around,” Sam says. “We’ve been looking forward to coming back for three years. Can’t wait!”

Jason Aldean will close things out on Sunday night, with Old Dominion and Lauren Alaina taking the stage as well.

“Headlining Stagecoach always feels like a bucket list show for me,” Jason reflects. “You can’t beat looking out at the sea of fans with that California backdrop.”

Tickets go on sale on Friday for the festival’s 13th year. You can find out more at StagecoachFestival.com.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Cole Swindell will welcome 2019 with a post-game show at the Gator Bowl

ABC/Randy HolmesCole Swindell will be ringing in 2019 in Jacksonville, Florida this New Year’s Eve, as he plays a post-game concert after the Gator Bowl.  

The 74th annual game will kick off at 7:30 p.m. on December 31 at TIAA Bank Field, with a team from the Southeastern Conference taking on a rival from the Atlantic Coast Conference, the Big Ten, or Notre Dame. You’ll be able to watch the game on ESPN.

Immediately afterwards, a stage on which Cole will play will be built on the field. Fireworks will follow his performance at midnight. Tickets to the game include both the show and the New Year’s Eve festivities.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Keith Urban, Dierks Bentley, Sheryl Crow and more complete the lineup for CMT’s first-ever all-female “Artists of the Year” gala

CMTDierks Bentley, Martina McBride and Sheryl Crow will pay tribute to Loretta Lynn Wednesday night, as CMT honors the country legend as their Artist of a Lifetime.

Keith Urban, Smokey Robinson, Elle King, Jimi Westbrook, Phillip Sweet, Charles Kelley, and Dave Haywood are also set to present at CMT’s annual Artists of the Year gala, along with Sissy Spacek, who’ll help honor Loretta. Trisha Yearwood will also supply a special introduction.

This is the first year CMT’s ever chosen an all-female roster of Artist of the Year honorees, and all the ladies are set to perform. Carrie Underwood will take the stage with her upcoming tour mates Maddie & Tae and Runaway June, while Miranda Lambert will sing with Pistol Annies.

Kelsea Ballerini will team up with Alison Krauss, as Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild and Kimberly Schlapman perform with R&B legend Gladys Knight. Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott plans a special performance with singer/songwriter Tori Kelly and gospel music’s Kirk Franklin, while Maren Morris will remember Aretha Franklin with Americana favorite Brandi Carlisle.

You can tune in to hear all the music live from Nashville starting at 8 p.m. ET on CMT.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

“Shotgun Angels”: Rascal Flatts’ Jay DeMarcus readies inspirational memoir for spring

ZondervanRascal Flatts’ Jay DeMarcus is writing his memoirs, with his first book due in the spring of 2019.

Shotgun Angels: My Story of Broken Roads and Unshakable Hope will be distributed by Christian publisher Zondervan.

“I’m really looking forward to sharing a pretty personal look at my path so far, as that isn’t something I’ve done yet,” Jay says. “In Shotgun Angels, readers will hear never-before-told stories and get a glimpse into what it was like for me coming from Columbus, Ohio and my journey to Nashville.”

“My ultimate goal,” he adds, “is that the book will encourage people that no matter where they are in their lives, they can find hope, comfort and strength in their faith.”

Shotgun Angels is set to come out on April 30, 2019. Meanwhile, Rascal Flatts’ new single, “Back to Life,” is currently making its way up the country chart.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Oct 16

Dan + Shay suspect the secret of their success may be Dan’s new ‘do

ABC/Randy HolmesFor most of their careers, Dan + Shay have had fairly similar, short haircuts. But that all started to change several months ago, when Dan Smyers decided to grow his out.

“Honesty, I’d never had curly hair as a kid,” Dan explains. “I don’t know what happened. My mom has curly hair, so maybe that’s where it came from. And I’ve always had it short, so I never really found that out.”

“But it’s been crazy,” he says of the newfound attention he’s been getting for his ‘do. “And I’ve come this far… it’s like, ‘Do I cut it now? It took awhile to get here.’ So it’s funny, and it’s a good conversation piece. You know, something a little bit different.”

As for the Mrs.? Well, it turns out she’s a fan.

Abby honestly likes it. She loves it,” Dan says. “I mean, people always ask, cause they’re like ‘You probably don’t like the hair, do you?’ She’s like, ‘I actually do.'”

“I couldn’t afford a haircut whenever we first met,” Dan recalls. “Seriously, I would wear this Boston Red Sox hat… But I had sort of long hair and I think it reminds her of when we met, when I was much younger and much more handsome I guess,” he smiles.

Just as Dan’s been growing his hair out, the duo’s been experiencing the biggest hit of their career so far with “Tequila.” Shay Mooney jokes that just like Sampson in the Old Testament, Dan’s strength might come from his hair.

“It’s good luck… because this has been a good year.” Shay says. “So it might be like Sampson. His power is in the hair. So if you cut it and things start going bad, like it’s coming back,” he jokes. “It’s coming back for sure.”

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Oct 15

Dierks Bentley closes the Mountain High Tour with sold-out Hollywood show featuring Dwight Yoakam

ABC RadioDierks Bentley wrapped up his 2018 Mountain High Tour with a sold-out Saturday night show at the Hollywood Bowl that also included a surprise appearance by Dwight Yoakam.

Openers LANCO and Brothers Osborne joined Dierks and the country legend for an impromptu two-song jam.

“This season of my life has been filled with so much meaning and purpose and this tour played a large role in that,” Dierks says, reflecting on the thirty-city run.

“We launched it with the new album,” he continues, “which was in a lot of ways a reflection of the fans’ stories we’d heard out on the road, combined with my own personal life and career journey. We played and sold out bucket-list rooms like Madison Square Garden and the Hollywood Bowl.”

“Most importantly, it was a year the friendships that already existed…were taken to new levels,” Dierks adds. “The family atmosphere that existed on this tour is something I strive for every year and this year was no exception…it was one of the most fun touring seasons of my life on and off the stage.”

Most of the Mountain High shows featured an appearance by Dierks’ 90’s covers band, Hot Country Knights, as well as a guest spot by LANCO’s Brandon Lancaster singing the John Michael Montgomery classic, “Sold (The Grundy County Auction.)”

John and TJ Osborne also re-appeared during Dierks set to perform their current top twenty hit together, “Burning Man.”

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Oct 15

Vince Gill unwraps the double vinyl “The Christmas Collection” for the 2018 holiday

MCA Nashville Vince Gill’s two holiday albums will be available this year as a double vinyl LP set, exclusively at Cracker Barrel.

1993’s Let There Be Peace on Earth and 1998’s Breath of Heaven will be repackaged as The Christmas Collection for the 2018 season. The new set is available at Cracker Barrel stores now.

Once again this year, Vince and his wife Amy Grant will play a series of holiday shows at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium. They kick off a 12-night run November 28 that goes through December 23.  

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