ABC/Image Group LA Kelsea Ballerini’s sweat session last Saturday morning in Las Vegas raised $5,000 for ACM Lifting Lives.
The “I Hate Love Songs” hitmaker hosted the first-ever ACM Workout for a Cause last weekend, with celebrity trainer Erin Oprea leading fans through some of her signature exercises. In addition to Kelsea, Oprea also trains Carrie Underwood and Kacey Musgraves.
ACM Lifting Lives is the charitable arm of the Academy of Country Music.
EMI Records NashvilleThe wait is almost over for the sophomore album from Brothers Osborne, Port Saint Joe, which arrives on Friday. And if you're wondering if the record’s release date, 4/20, is a coincidence, just consider the title of the latest advance track from the project: “Weed, Whiskey and Willie.”
“I’ve got bottles and vinyl stacked to the ceiling/I get stoned for survival, it helps with the healing,” TJ and John sing. “When it all goes to hell, the only thing I believe in is weed, whiskey, and Willie.”
If you check the length of the song, the numbers synonymous with pot come up again. “Weed, Whiskey and Willie” clocks in at exactly 4:20.
You can stream or download the track now, in advance of Port Saint Joe’s Friday release. You can also check out the tune’s lyric video on YouTube.
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicReba McEntire’s been very open about the new man in her life, Anthony “Skeeter” Lasuzzo, posting photos on social media and even taking him on the red carpet at awards shows.
Now, Reba’s former sitcom co-star and good friend, Melissa Peterman, is shedding more light on the country icon’s relationship with the 68-year-old retired oilman, who she met last year on vacation in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
“I see her completely at ease with him,” Peterman tells Closer. “He adores her wholeheartedly, which is what we all want, right?”
The actress, who played Barbra Jean on Reba, says Lasuzzo seems adept at handling the high-profile situations the Country Music Hall of Famer finds herself in.
“I don’t think it even causes a stir,” Peterman adds. “He’s a confident guy. And when you’re hanging with the crazy crew that Reba has, you gotta be a good sport and be able to roll, and he totally does!”
Reba and her husband of 26 years, Narvel Blackstock, split up in 2015.
Nicola Harger Thomas Rhett’s wife, Lauren, is launching her own line of jewelry to help the children of Uganda.
It's called Lauren Akins X Ladybird, and features your choice of seven necklaces, which all come with three charms: a heart, a plus sign, and the number 1.
The money Lauren raises will go to Love One International. That organization grew out of 147 Million Orphans, which was instrumental in TR and Lauren’s adoption of their daughter Willa Gray last year.
"The impact Love One International is making on kids’ lives in Uganda is truly indescribable,” Lauren says. “We’re helping shape communities and rebuild families through these children.”
“Their bellies are full and more importantly, so are their hearts,” she explains. “I know it is impossible to care for every child’s needs in the world, but we each can love one. This is the idea behind Love 1 and why we created this jewelry line.”
Lauren’s necklaces range from a $99 sterling silver option to a gold-and-diamond version that runs $749. You can check them out at LaurenAkins.com.
ABC/Image Group LA The campaign for a Reba reboot continues, and Reba McEntire wants your help to make it happen.
"Call your congressman!" Reba joked backstage at Sunday's ACM Awards.
"I don't know what's gonna happen," she went on. "I've been trying to get a reboot ever since we left. We had so many more stories to tell. So I hope we get to work it out. I hope it happens."
With shows like Roseanne, Will & Grace, and Murphy Brown all enjoying a second life, Reba's 2001-2006 sitcom is another show many fans would like to see come back.
The most recent talk of a Reba reunion came last month, when Reba reunited with co-stars Melissa Peterman and Christopher Rich -- aka Barbra Jean and Brock -- at the annual Celebrity Fight Night fundraiser.
Comstock/Thinkstock Forty years ago this week, this super-successful album of standards by Willie Nelson was released. Can you name this record, which went on on to sell more than five-million copies? ANSWER: Stardust.
Burke/Triolo Productions/Thinkstock Three-time CMA Musician of the Year Randy Scruggs died Tuesday at the age of 64, after a short illness. Born the son of bluegrass pioneer Earl Scruggs, Randy went on to be instrumental in the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band's Will the Circle Be Unbroken albums, and win multiple Grammys on his own. He wrote Deana Carter's hit "We Danced Anyway," among others.
AXS TV will celebrate the 85th birthday of Willie Nelson by devoting a large block of its programming to the icon. It starts Saturday, April 28 at 1 p.m. ET with The Big Interview with Dan Rather, and wraps with the 10 p.m. showing of Willie Nelson: Live at Billy Bob's Texas.
If you missed Florida Georgia Line performing their smash hit "Meant to Be" with Bebe Rexha on Wednesday's The Ellen DeGeneres Show, you can catch it online.
ABC/Image Group LA Any day now, we should get to hear the new collaboration between Sugarland and Taylor Swift.
Taylor co-wrote the song, called "Babe," which appears on the duo's upcoming Bigger album, and she sings on it as well.
It turns out Sugarland and the worldwide pop/country superstar go way back, and it sounds like Taylor's a big fan.
"She reached out," Jennifer Nettles explains. "We've obviously known each other for many years. When she was just getting started, we had just had our first little EP out called Premium Quality Tunes. She still has a copy of it that we signed for her whenever we played a couple shows together."
Once Taylor found out Jennifer and Kristian Bush were coming back together after taking some time to focus on their solo projects, she pitched the duo the track.
"She was excited we were getting back together," Jennifer continues, "and reached out and said, 'Hey! I have a song.' And that is a short list, ladies and gentlemen, of people to whom she has said, 'Hey! I have a song. Want to sing it?' So we said, 'Yeah!'"
Up until last week, the collaboration was a closely-guarded secret. Kristian explains why.
"We've really never put a song by anybody else on any of our records," he points out. "So, you know, we weren't really used to kind of sorting through that, and we didn't want to mess it up... So we didn't tell anybody about it, until we got finished."
"And she liked it, thank God..." he laughs. "Because it's a good song."
Backstage at Sunday's ACM Awards, Jennifer revealed that "Babe" is "dropping next week." Sugarland's full album, Bigger, arrives June 8.
ABC/Image Group LA Just days after we learned Chris Stapleton missed Sunday’s ACM Awards because of the birth of his twin sons, his wife and musical partner Morgane is revealing more about the two new little ones in their lives.
“Thank you for all the love!” she shared on Instagram, along with a photo with the newborns. “We’re so grateful to finally be home with our sweet family.”
Morgane goes on to thank the doctors and nurses at Centennial Hospital in Nashville.
“At more than a month early,” she explains, “we had a week long stay in the nicu & the incredible people there kept our boys healthy & happy. Words cannot express our gratitude for you all & what you did for our family. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!”
Morgane and Chris also have two older children, a boy and a girl. So far, they haven't revealed the twins' names.
ABC/Image Group LA Cam just kicked off her Listening Room Series Tuesday night with a sold-out show in Portland, Oregon; and now she’s adding a rather impressive date to her itinerary: On Wednesday, September 26, the California native will do her first headlining concert at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium.
Lucie Silvas -- who happens to be married to John Osborne of Brothers Osborne -- will be Cam's special guest for the night. Pre-sales are underway now, with seats going on sale to the general public on Friday.
BMLGHot off Midland’s free-wheeling appearance Sunday night in the ACM press room -- where the trio showed up with their Budweiser tallboys -- the New Vocal Group winners have gone right back to work.
“Pure honky tonk magic tonite filming the new video for Burn Out...” Midland tweeted late Monday, along with a photo that shows lead singer Mark Wystrach in front of a Billy Bob’s Texas logo. The Fort Worth, Texas bar is known as the World’s Largest Honky Tonk.
“Burn Out” is the third single from Midland’s On the Rocks album, which features their #1 debut single, “Drinkin’ Problem.”
Sony Music Kane Brown’s self-titled debut returns to #1 on Billboard’s country albums charts this week, making it the set’s eleventh time at the top. Kacey Musgraves’ Golden Hour got in between Kane and #1 last week, but it now slips to second place.
Kane’s getting plenty of good news from Billboard this week: Monday, he found out he’s nominated for Artist, Album and Song for “What Ifs” with Lauren Alaina at the upcoming Billboard Music Awards.
This week, Kane’s follow-up single, “Heaven,” ascends to the top five. If you’re a Comcast customer, you can see the him perform the song as an encore performance to Sunday's ACM Awards.
Country Music AssociationIf you can't grab a ticket to CMA Fest’s nightly stadium shows this summer, the Country Music Association once again is giving fans a free option.
The venue typically known as Ascend Amphitheater in downtown Nashville will transform into the Cracker Barrel Country Roads Stage from June 7-9.
Broken Bow artists Chase Bryant, Craig Campbell, Lindsay Ell, Chase Rice, Runaway June, Granger Smith and more will take the stage on Thursday. Lee Brice headlines on Friday, with Clare Dunn, Tyler Farr, Maddie & Tae, and Drake White joining him.
On Saturday, Cole Swindell leads the bill, with his Warner Bros. labelmates Cale Dodds, Morgan Evans, Michael Ray and Tegan Marie rounding out the show. The concerts start at 7 p.m. CT each night.
While these performances are free, you can buy passes that include VIP early access.
Some seats still remain for the Thursday-Sunday concerts at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium. You can find out more at CMAFest.com.
ABC/Image Group LAOn this day in 2010, this artist became the first woman in history to win Entertainer of the Year at the ACM Awards twice. Can you name her? ANSWER: Carrie Underwood, who previously won the award in 2009.
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.”
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.
Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockRodney Atkins has announced his 2018 These Are My People Tour in support of his new single, "Caught Up In the Country." The tour kicks off April 18 and runs through June 29. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit rodneyatkins.com.
The 2019 Outlaw Country Cruise 4 will set sail January 27 - February 1, 2019. The eclectic lineup includes Margo Price, Bobby Bare, Steve Earle & the Dukes, Drive-By Truckers and many more. The cruise will sail from Tampa to Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas and Nassau, Bahamas. For more information, visit outlawcountrycruise.com.
Kacey Musgraves and Midland are both nominees at the same two upcoming award ceremonies. At the Innovation in Music Awards, set for June 3, both Kacey and Midland are nominated in the category of Innovation in Music, Creative/Artist. Meanwhile, at the Association of Independent Music Publishers' Nashville Awards, Kacey's "Space Cowboy" is a finalist for the award's Publisher's Pick, while Midland's "Drinkin' Problem" is a nominee for Song of the Year.
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.