Jimmie Allen hopes his success is “motivation” for people to chase their dreams


Jimmie Allen earned back-to-back chart-topping hits with his last two singles — “Make Me Want To” and the Brad Paisley duet “Freedom Was a Highway.” As he reflected on the achievement, he said he hopes he can be a source of inspiration.

“It feels great,” he said at an event celebrating the two hits, according to CMT. “Hopefully, it’s motivation for people not to be afraid to chase things, even when it’s different.”

As a Black country artist who’s not afraid to mix other styles and genre influences into his work, Jimmie knows that he doesn’t always fit the mold of what people expect a country star to be. But he’s found success by following his inner muse, he said, and that sometimes means taking a song’s chart placement with a grain of salt.

“No matter where the song is on a chart, it’s not a real representation of what the song is doing for people because I know a lot of songs that were #1 but not hit songs,” he said. “I know a lot of hit songs that never reach #1.”

The true measure of success, he said, is in the fan engagement.

“I just kind of grade the song based off when I play shows, how many people sing it back?” he adds. “How many messages do I get?”

This summer, Jimmie will apply that approach to a whole new musical chapter. His next album, Tulip Drive, is coming out in June, and he’ll take its songs on the road when he goes on tour with Carrie Underwood for her Denim & Rhinestones Tour.

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Dierks Bentley + Elle King’s “Worth a Shot” goes Wild West in new music video

Sony Music Nashville

Dierks Bentley and Elle King dive into the world of an 1800s-era Wild West town in the music video for their new duet, “Worth a Shot.”

The pair play a husband and wife drawn apart by Dierks’ gambling and outlaw ways. Elle catches wind of his misdeeds while she’s at home with their baby — played by her real-life 8-month-old son, Lucky — but it turns out she’s not quite the demure housewife she seems.

Cue a fun, 3 1/2-minute mini movie, which features a seedy saloon, Elle in disguise as a man and — ultimately — a reunion for the pair.

Elle came up for the concept of the music video in collaboration with directors Stephen Kinigopoulos and Alexa Stone. At the end of the video, a director calls “cut,” and Elle and Dierks snap out of their Wild West selves, going back to being the artists and pals who collaborated on the song.

“Can we drink now?” Elle says, cracking up. “Was yours real whiskey or water?” Dierks says, referencing the shots they’d taken in a drinking contest in a prior scene. “I have actually been drinking alcohol this whole time,” Elle jokes.

“I’m going back to the brothel,” Dierks responds, standing up and walking out of the frame.

Dierks and Elle may not be real-life outlaws, but they are real-life pals: “Worth a Shot” is their second collaboration, following 2016’s “Different for Girls.

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The Judds 2022 Tour will go on, with a star-studded new lineup featuring Faith Hill, Little Big Town + more

Wynonna Judd performs at the “Naomi Judd: A River of Time” celebration at Ryman Auditorium on May 15, 2022 in Nashville; Mickey Bernal/Getty Images

Before Naomi Judd’s unexpected death in late April, she and her daughter Wynonna had made plans to launch a fall 2022 tour as legendary country act The Judds.

At Naomi’s public memorial concert last weekend, Wynonna announced that The Judds: The Final Tour will continue, adding that it’s what her mother would have wanted. Now, new details are emerging about the lineup for the re-imagined tour dates, which are scheduled to begin September 30 and last through the month of October.

The show is being reimagined as an all-star girls’ night, with performances from Little Big Town, Ashley McBryde, Trisha Yearwood and Brandi Carlile. Martina McBride — who was originally scheduled to be the opener on the tour — is still on the bill, and she’ll perform a set of her own music during the supporting act slot each night.

Additionally, a final arena stop in Lexington, Kentucky has been added to the tour for October 29. That’s a particularly meaningful spot to close the show, as Kentucky is Wynonna and Naomi’s home state. Faith Hill will join the bill for that date.

In a statement, Wynonna thanked fans for their outpouring of support and interest in attending the shows, even though the lineup will look very different than originally planned.

“I am humbled, once again, by the loyalty of the fans who have been with us for 38+ years, who continue to show up for me when I need them the most,” she said. “I am grateful that we will continue to honor the Judds legacy together.”

“I am so happy that in this time of grief for us all, Wynonna has agreed to move forward with this tour,” added Larry Strickland, Naomi’s husband of 30+ years, “as my sweet wife Naomi would have wanted her to do.”

A limited number of tickets are still available for stops on The Judds: The Final Tour. Tickets for the Lexington, Kentucky show go on sale May 21.

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Ingrid Andress’ favorite hobby includes flowers, hearts and ‘raunchy’ rap lyrics: “It’s just so funny to me”


When Ingrid Andress isn’t writing new songs or touring, you can probably find her enjoying a hobby she picked up as a home-schooled kid: cross-stitching.

“I used to cross-stich when I was younger, and now I love cross-stitching rap lyrics,” the singer says. “It’s just so funny to me. I don’t know why my brain thinks that’s hilarious, but cross-stitching weird, raunchy rap lyrics with, like, flowers and hearts around [them] just brings me so much joy, and I have no idea why.”

Hopefully Ingrid’s friends and family feel the same way — she says she likes to spread that joy around, especially during the holidays.

“I used to do them as Christmas gifts,” she continues, explaining that she either keeps it in the hoop she uses to make it so the gift recipient can hang it on their wall, or she cross-stitches a pillow or napkin for them.

Ingrid says she’s waiting for the perfect cross-stitch craft to make for herself. “I haven’t kept one for me yet. Usually I just give them away,” she continues.

Ingrid may be cross-stitching in her free time, but she’s currently hard at work on musical pursuits. She released her latest new song, “Seeing Someone Else,” earlier this month.

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Luke Bryan pays tribute to fellow ‘American Idol’ judge and Gershwin Prize recipient Lionel Richie: “Nothing but love”

ABC/Lou Rocco

Luke Bryan was among the many performers who turned out at a ceremony on May 12 honoring Lionel Richie, this year’s recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. PBS aired the event on Tuesday night.

During his time onstage, Luke performed “Lady,” a classic from Lionel’s catalog with a country connection. The song was recorded by Kenny Rogers in 1980, becoming a massive cross-genre hit for both artists.

Before he sang, Luke briefly spoke about his relationship with the honoree. “You know how we all have bad days? I wake up and have a bad day, and then I tell myself, ‘Somewhere, Lionel Richie ain’t having a bad day, so you better have a good day,’” he told the crowd.

“This guy is everything you believe he is, I promise you,” Luke added.

The country superstar also marked the moment on his social media, posting some snapshots of his performance and video of the hug he shared with Lionel after the song.

“I’ve got nothing but love for you [Lionel Richie]!” Luke wrote in the caption of his post. “It was an incredible experience getting to honor you at the #GershwinPrize concert.”

The country genre was well represented during the ceremony, which featured a massive cast of performers from all genres. Garth Brooks and Chris Stapleton were also on hand to tribute the pop legend.

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Nashville notes: Naomi Judd, Priscilla Block + more

Naomi Judd’s public memorial, Naomi Judd: A River of Time Celebration, aired on CMT Sunday, and it’s become the network’s highest rated special in two years. In under 48 hours, the televised event racked up over 16 million cumulative views across all channels. Two encore presentations of the special will take place: this Thursday at 9 p.m. ET and Saturday at 12 p.m. ET.

Priscilla Block is taking her Welcome to the Block Party tour overseas for five dates this August. Head to her website for more information about the shows.

LoCash is sharing the stage with The Beach Boys at the Grand Ole Opry later this month. Set for May 27, the shows will mark the Beach Boys’ Grand Ole Opry debut. The two acts recently teamed up for LoCash’s new single “Beach Boys.”

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Brothers Osborne’s John Osborne on how music helps his mental health: “It allows me to express myself”


May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and for Brothers Osborne’s John Osborne, that’s personal. He has previously discussed his battles with depression and anxiety, saying that he went through a difficult period of depression and suicidal ideation in late 2019 that led to a hospitalization.

In partnership with ACM Lifting Lives, John talks about how he maintains his mental health and how music plays into that.

“I learned to be OK with not being OK,” he reflects. “Being OK with not being OK is just being patient with how you feel.”

Stepping onstage with his guitar and playing music for his fans is an outlet, John continues, that can help him keep his mental health stable. “It allows me to express myself — musically, but it [also] gets all of the feelings that I have inside out.”

And as a listener? John says that he doesn’t typically dance, but there’s one pop star who he likes to jam out to every now and again.

“I’m a wretched dancer, but if I’m alone and someone plays Dua Lipa, I might shake my butt a little bit,” he jokes.

If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide or are worried about a friend or loved one, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 [TALK] for free confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Even if it feels like it, you are not alone.

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After back-to-back chart-toppers, Lainey Wilson teases her next radio single


Lainey Wilson’s got a new single coming out on Friday, and she’s hoping it’ll make three for three atop the country radio chart. Her last two singles, “Things a Man Oughta Know” and a Cole Swindell duet called “Never Say Never,” each made it to the top spot.

Her new song is called “Heart Like a Truck,” and Lainey teased the song on her social channels this week, posting video of herself singing along.

“I’ve got a heart like a truck / It’s been drug through the mud / Runs on dreams and gasoline / And that ol’ highway holds the key,” she sings in the chorus.

“Heart Like a Truck” marks a new chapter for Lainey. It’s the first new music she’s put out since Sayin’ What I’m Thinkin’, her major-label debut from early 2021.

Since that album came out, Lainey’s star has rapidly risen, and she shows no signs of slowing down: She’s joining Luke Combs on his Middle of Somewhere Tour this year, and she’s playing festivals like next month’s CMA Fest and the Dierks Bentley-led Seven Peaks Fest, plus appearing in Brian Kelley’s May We All musical.

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Jimmie Allen, Trisha Yearwood + more sign on for panels, events at CMA Fest


Special CMA Fest programming continues to roll out this week, as the calendar fills in for the multiday country music festival headed to Nashville this June.

Jimmie Allen will appear on the CMA Close Up Stage in a panel discussing his children’s book, My Voice is a Trumpet. Trisha Yearwood is also helming an event billed as Up Close and Personal, featuring artists Lauren Alaina and Caitlyn Smith.

Other special events happening on the stage center around artists like Lainey Wilson, Craig Morgan and Florida Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley. The collective Black Opry will take the stage, and Lady A’s Hillary Scott is set to host a female-forward event presented by She is the Music.

Meanwhile, a large group of newcomers will perform on the Spotlight Stage. Among them are Jenny Tolman, Shelby Darrall, Miko Marks and Madison Kozak.

The 2022 CMA Fest will take place June 9-12 in downtown Music City. Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Kane Brown, Jason Aldean and many more big names will take the main stage at Nissan Stadium during the festival.


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Luke Combs drops the track list for ‘Growin’ Up’, and it includes a Miranda Lambert duet


Luke Combs is filling in more of the details about his upcoming third studio album, Growin’ Up. The country star shared the full track list for the project on his social media this week, and it includes a few live favorites — and one superstar duet.

Megawatt duets aren’t a new thing for Luke, who included a collaboration with Eric Church called “Does to Me” on his last album.

This time around, the song in question is called “Outrunnin’ Your Memory,” a collaboration with Miranda Lambert. Luke had previously teased that the album would feature a duet, and hinted at a few more facts about the album in the days leading up to the track list announcement.

“Crazy thing is, I’ve only ever posted about or played lived 6 of the 12 songs on the new album, so y’all have never heard half the songs,” he wrote earlier in May.

Now that it’s out, the track list features several familiar titles — like “Tomorrow Me” and the lead single “Doin’ This” — but there’s plenty of never-before-heard stuff in the mix.

Fans will get the chance to hear a little bit more of the album before it comes out in full: Luke says that track three off the project, “The Kind of Love We Make,” will be coming out ahead of release day, on June 17.

Growin’ Up will arrive in full the next week, on June 24.

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