Oct 23

Darius Rucker brings country flair to the “Wrong Side of Love” on Young Bombs’ new single

Kelia Anne/Universal Music GroupCanadian EDM duo Young Bombs enlisted some country royalty in the form of Darius Rucker to give an extra boost to their new single, “Wrong Side of Love.”

Placing Darius’ crooning vocals front and center, the song is a brooding ode to a doomed love story, set to a catchy and dance-able beat.

“Wrong Side of Love” comes off of Young Bombs’ debut EP, The Young Bombs Show.

The tune represents a new direction for the rising EDM duo, and is their first foray into twang-tinged country sounds and vocals. But for Darius, genre-blending styling is nothing new, of course — he enjoyed a successful career as the frontman of pop-rock outfit Hootie & the Blowfish before making his move into country music. 

Most recently in his solo career, Darius released a sunny new single called “Beers and Sunshine.”

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 23

Florida Georgia Line, Nelly have a “Lil Bit” more duet fun with new country and hip-hop crossover

Columbia RecordsRapper Nelly is no stranger to going country.  He of course famously teamed up with Florida George Line in 2012 for a remix of the country duo’s “Cruise,” which appears on their Here’s to the Good Times album.

Since then, Nelly and FGL have shared stages and tours together.  Now they’re joining forces once again for the release of the rapper’s new banjo-inflected banger, “Lil Bit.”

Speaking to Billboard, Nelly calls the decision to return to work with the guys of FGL a “no brainer,” adding that this song may not be the last fans see of the two acts together in the near future.

“My relationship with them is super tight,” he says. “We’ve done two tours together, we have a bunch of other tours planned, and things that we want to do…they’re family.”

The country-meets-hip-hop tune is a fun and flirty ode to new romance. The song’s lyrics even appear to name-check modern country-rap star Lil Nas X, nodding to his 2019 megahit “Old Town Road” with a line referencing a “new town road.”

Nelly also recently made another country cameo when he sang a verse on Kane Brown‘s “Cool Again” earlier this year.

“Lil Bit” comes off of Nelly’s upcoming EP, Heartland.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 23

“If Only”: Ashley McBryde joins Shenandoah for a wistful look back towards simpler times

Foundry RecordsAshley McBryde is the newest guest star to appear alongside ‘90s hitmaking duo Shenandoah in song, with the release of “If Only.”

It’s a slice of down-home, harmony-laden nostalgia that reaches back toward a simpler past, wondering why things can’t always be that easy. In gentle, easy-going harmony, the three singers reminisce about memories filled with sweet tea, family and simple joys, back when the world seemed to spin a little slower.

Ashley says that this duet marked a chance for her to collaborate with two long-held heroes.

“‘Would you like to sing with Shenandoah on their new record?’ It didn’t even take a whole second for me to say yes,” the “One Night Standards” star recalls. “I’m a true fan of the band and Mr. [Marty] Raybon’s bluegrass stuff, too. I jumped at the chance to sing with him. I love this song…the message is so relevant and needed right now.”

Ashley’s one of a slew of guest stars to sign on for Shenandoah’s new duets album, Every Road. The project also boasts appearances from Blake Shelton, Carly Pearce, Luke Bryan, Brad Paisley and many more.

“If Only” follows two previously released cuts on Every Road: A duet with Zac Brown Band called “I’d Take Another One of Those,” and another with Lady A, titled “Every Time I Look at You.”

Every Road is due out in full on November 13.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 23

‘What You See Ain’t Always What You Get’: If Luke Combs is involved, it’s probably better

River House Artists/Columbia NashvilleJust as Luke Combs‘ debut album, This One’s for You, evolved into This One’s for You Too, today his sophomore effort, What You See Is What You Get, expands to become What You See Ain’t Always What You Get.  

If you suspect Luke had a plan all along — you’re right.

“Yeah, actually, I did…” he tells ABC Audio. “Once it came time for the second album, I kind of had an idea what I wanted to do. And I wanted to keep that kind of juxtaposing theme of the two albums and being similar, but also being different.”

In fact, it’s part of Luke’s vision to raise the quality of deluxe albums overall.

“I’ve always felt like personally that sometimes a deluxe edition of an album is just songs that…weren’t good enough to make the record,” he confesses. “I would get excited about, ‘Oh, I can’t wait to hear this deluxe edition.’ And then the songs wouldn’t be very good, in my opinion.”

So Luke’s made it his business to change that.

“Why can’t we take the deluxe edition and make it better?” he asks. “Why can’t we write new songs, go in, put the work in…and try to make them even better than the last album?”

It’s one leg of the CMA nominee’s journey toward hopefully one day claiming the Entertainer of the Year trophy.

“I always want to be moving forward, whether that’s musically or as a performer or songwriter or a singer. And so I’m always trying to get better…” Luke explains.

“I think that’s what we’ve done…” he adds. “There’s five songs on there: a couple that I’ve teased to folks, a couple that I’ve played live, and then a couple that nobody has ever heard. So I’m real stoked about it.”  

By Stephen Hubbard
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

Maren Morris is among the artists scheduled to appear at a massive Joe Biden campaign concert

ABC/Image Group LAMaren Morris will be making an appearance at a sprawling upcoming concert for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign.

The event, dubbed “I Will Vote,” features a massive list of performers from all genres. Cher, Bon Jovi, Dave Matthews and The Black Eyed Peas are just a few of the artists set to perform or make an appearance during the show.

Biden himself will take part in the event, alongside his wife, Jill Biden, vice presidential candidate Senator Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff.

Additionally, a number of A-List actors are on deck to appear, including Armie Hammer, Helen Mirren, Billy Porter and Amy Schumer.

A number of country stars have been a part of the push to get out the vote this election season. Earlier in the week, Dan + Shay revealed that they’re performing as part of the non-partisan CBS special, Every Vote Counts: A Celebration of Democracy.

Superstars Tim McGraw and Faith Hill have also been vocal proponents of voter participation, and recently voted early as part of a social media challenge from former first lady Michelle Obama.

Biden’s “I Will Vote” campaign concert will bring in performances from a number of different locations, incorporating both live and pre-taped segments. The event will take place this Sunday at 8:00 p.m. ET.  Fans can attend the event with a donation of any size to the Joe Biden Victory Fund.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

Dustin Lynch is planning an epic Vegas pool party for the summer of 2021

BBR Music GroupAs fans and artists alike dream of the day when the COVID-19 pandemic is a thing of the past, Dustin Lynch is doing more than just wishing. He’s planning ahead to next summer, with his just-announced Dustin Lynch Pool Situation: Vegas.

The event is a epic three-day pool party in Sin City, set to take place from June 3-6, 2021, and Dustin’s bringing some musical friends along for the ride. Jordan Davis and Hardy are both scheduled to perform at the summertime bash, which will also feature DJ sets from Brandi Cyrus.

“It’s been a goal of mine for a long time to create a one-of-a-kind weekend experience for fans to be a part of, and the Pool Situation is just that,” the singer says. “Vegas is one of the greatest party cities in the world and I can’t think of a better place to launch this event. Get ready for a weekend of unforgettable music, hangs and partying. Summer 2021 can’t come soon enough!”

Additionally, Dustin’s upping the ante with a number of personally curated specialty parties, which are named after some of his biggest hits. Examples include the “Where It’s At” Welcome Party, the “Cowboys & Angels” Day Party and more.

Ticket packages and accommodation bundles for next year’s Dustin Lynch Pool Situation: Vegas are on sale now.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

Dolly Parton plays a singing angel in her upcoming Netflix holiday special, ‘Christmas on the Square’

Courtesy of NetflixDolly Parton is bringing her legendary vocal talents to the small screen this holiday season.

Netflix just released the trailer for its upcoming musical holiday special Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square. In the film, Dolly stars opposite Christine Baranksi in a heartwarming small-town holiday story that takes cues from seasonal classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

The special follows Regina Fuller, played by Baranski, a rich woman who returns to her hometown just before Christmas to attend to her recently deceased father’s affairs. The family owned a large swath of the town, and Regina is planning to evict the townspeople in order to sell her dad’s land to a mall developer. To make matters even worse, eviction day is Christmas Eve.  Of course, Dolly appears as a singing angel to change Regina’s mind, and open her heart to the Christmas spirit.

“Find that light and it will lead you to the part of you that you lost,” Dolly’s character tells Regina. “The part of you that can be happy.”

Also starring Jenifer Lewis and Treat Williams, and directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen, Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square boasts 14 original songs from the legendary country performer.

Just in time for the holiday season, the special debuts on November 22.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

Lady A lands first Christian Airplay chart-topper with their Chris Tomlin duet, “Who You Are to Me”

ABC/Image Group LACountry trio Lady A are expanding their horizons as they nab their first number-one hit on Billboard’s Christian Airplay chart, dated October 24.

The band’s new hit comes courtesy of “Who You Are to Me,” their collaboration with veteran Christian artist Chris Tomlin. It’s the first single off of Chris’ Chris Tomlin & Friends album, a project that sees the singer collaborating with a number of country A-Listers.

The Lady A band mates co-wrote “Who You Are to Me,” which is their first-ever entry on the Christian Airplay chart as well as their first number-one hit. Of course, Lady A’s no strangers to hitting the top spot on Billboard’s Country Airplay chart, where they have a total of 10 number-one hits under their belt.

Lady A is only the second act to ever top both the Country Airplay and Christian Airplay charts. They’re following in Dolly Parton’s illustrious footsteps: Dolly became the first-ever performer to hit the number-one spot on both charts only last month, when her Zach Williams duet “There Was Jesus” became a chart-topping Christian Airplay hit.

Meanwhile Lady A’s “Champagne Night” is also climbing the charts over at country radio.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

“Gone”: Dierks Bentley is down-and-out, but still undefeated, in his catchy new single

Capitol Records NashvilleEven though live country music’s been mostly “Gone” since early this year, Dierks Bentley is still right here. Now, he’s giving fans a taste of new music to tide them over until he can get back out on the road again.

“Gone” is an infectious, sing-a-long ode to how a breakup can make you tune out of life without ever leaving the couch. It’s Dierks’ latest single, and the first taste of fresh solo music since his 2018 studio album, The Mountain.

Lyrically, the song uses the metaphor of a failed relationship to speak to the isolation caused by this year’s COVID-19 shutdown, which has kept country artists off the road and “Gone” from their fans.

“A good country show is just about the greatest communion there is out there,” Dierks reflects. “We are all relying on lyrics and melodies at home and trying however we can to find different ways to connect with our fans, so that they know how important they still are to us.”

Until he’s able to see his listeners again in person, Dierks says that he hopes his new single will remind his fans how much they mean to him.

“I’m counting the days until we can all be back together again, beers in the air,” the singer adds.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Oct 22

Maren Morris and Ryan Hurd “lucked out” with “laid back” baby Hayes, who’s on the cusp of some big milestones

ABC/Image Group LAAs far as Maren Morris and her fellow artist husband Ryan Hurd are concerned, they hit the parenting jackpot with their six-month-old son, Hayes.

“Ryan and I are both pretty laid back. We kind of lucked out having a very chill baby,” the singer tells People. “We’re pretty chill people, so maybe that’s reflected in our kid. We’re learning every day.”

Still, there are some parenting habits that the first-time mom and dad are trying to stay away from. Maren admits that they sometimes have to work to differentiate between the way they speak to Hayes and the way they speak to their two dogs, June and Pancake.

“There are habits we’re trying to break. Like, not talking to him in a high-pitched baby voice is so hard, but I don’t want to talk to him like I do my dogs,” she admits. “I was reading a French parenting book [that said], ‘Your kid isn’t the boss, you are.’ That’s been a thing we’re trying to stick by.”

But for the most part, she goes on to say, Hayes makes navigating first-time parenthood easy.

“We have started him on some baby food. He’s been pretty good with everything we’ve given him, so hopefully we don’t have a picky eater,” she explains, adding that her son is also getting close to another big baby milestone.

“I feel like he’s just about to start to crawl. He’s getting his butt in the air — I feel like he’s about to launch forward!” Maren adds.

Ryan also recently documented another big moment in Hayes’ life: Getting to watch his star mom perform for the first time, during an audience-less virtual show at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.