Kenny Chesney More Focused on Making Music for the Fans Than Winning Awards These Days

Image Courtesy Blue Chair/SonyKenny Chesney has won CMA Entertainer of the Year four times in the past decade, but he won't be upset if his name isn't called when the CMA nominations are announced Wednesday morning.  He spent this year mostly out of the spotlight working on his upcoming album, The Big Revival, featuring his latest hit, "American Kids."

Kenny says with a laugh, "If I was really worried about awards show season, I wouldn't have taken a year off, you know what I mean? It was more important for me to cut a great record and concentrate on that. What comes with that comes with it."

While Kenny admits winning CMA Awards has meant a lot to him in the past, he's just focused on making music for his fans from here on out.

Says Kenny, "I think I'm at the point now in my life and career if I win an award, great. If I don't, I just want to connect with my audience and grow it, and whatever comes, comes. But it doesn't mean I'm not competitive, 'cause I am."

Kenny is currently using his competitive nature to put together his 2015 live show. The Big Revival comes out September 23.

Little Big Town and Darius Rucker will announce the top nominees for the 48th Annual CMA Awards on ABC's Good Morning America Wednesday morning during the 8:30 half-hour. They'll announce the rest of the categories in a press conference streaming live at CMAAwards.com starting at 10 a.m. ET.


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Garth Brooks Releasing New Single, “People Loving People,” to Country Radio Wednesday

Image Courtesy CMAGarth Brooks' new single, "People Loving People," will be released to country radio on Wednesday. The song is written by busbee, Lee Thomas Miller and Chris Wallin. It's the lead single from Garth's upcoming studio album, coming out later this year.

There's a good chance Garth will perform the new single when he kicks off his run of shows in Chicago Thursday night.


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Luke Bryan Closes Out 2014 Stadium Shows with Attendance Record at Soldier Field

Image Courtesy Lyle Waisman/ Soldier FieldLuke Bryan played the last of his four 2014 stadium shows Sunday night at Chicago's Soldier Field, and in the process set a record as the best-selling country concert ever held at the venue.

More than 225,000 fans in all caught one of the stadium dates on Luke's That's My Kind of Night tour.

Luke also played back-to-back sold-out shows in Indianapolis over the weekend. He moves on to New York City for a show at Madison Square Garden on September 12 and another show at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn September 14.


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Lady Antebellum Scores Ninth Number-One Hit with “Bartender”

Image Courtesy Capitol NashvilleCongratulations to Lady Antebellum for scoring their ninth #1 on Billboard's Country Airplay chart with "Bartender." It's the lead single from the group's upcoming album, 747.  Lady A's Hillary Scott explains "Bartender" is just the kind of fun, breakup song they were looking for.

"We went into this wanting to put a spin on it and take the approach that the only way to get over it is to get out on the town with your girls!" Hillary says. "It's also insanely fun to perform, and the three of us have had a blast pumping up the tempo and going all out on it."

Look for 747 to land in stores September 30.


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Florida Georgia Line Playing Pop-Up Show Tonight in Nashville for CMT’s “Instant Jam”

Image Courtesy Kristin Barlowe/Republic NashvilleFlorida Georgia Line is playing a surprise show at Nashville's Exit/In tonight as part of the CMT Instant Jam concert series. The first fans in line at noon Nashville time at Exit/In get in free to the show. We'll keep you posted on the airdate.

Kenny Chesney filmed a pop-up concert last Friday night in Athens, GA for the first installment of Instant Jam, premiering September 27. Each episode of Instant Jam will showcase live performances, and gives fans a behind-the-scenes look at the hours leading up to the concerts.


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Dustin Lynch Says Even the Fans Have Noticed His Major Crush on Reba

Image Courtesy Broken Bow RecordsWhen Dustin Lynch recently Instagrammed a picture of Reba on #WCW-- Woman Crush Wednesday-- he wasn't kidding. In fact, his adoration for the country icon has gone so far that even the fans have noticed it.

"Well, she is my crush," he confesses, "and she knows that. That's what's awesome. I have a Reba cup onstage every single night. .. It's interesting, in, where was I -- Warsaw, Indiana. I look in the crowd and they've got Reba shirts on. So, it's getting out there. If they're not wearing my shirts, they're wearing Reba McEntire shirts to my concerts. So, it's pretty cool. But she is my crush. She's always been a dream girl of mine since I was a little bitty guy."

As you can imagine, Dustin would love to sing with the red-headed superstar, but he says he's not going to rush it.

"I think that's one of those things I want to earn my way into asking," he says. "I don't think I've gotten there yet, but hopefully, one day our paths will cross, and I can have enough courage to say, 'Hey, you know, I've got this song I'd love to record.'  How awesome would that be?"

Dustin goes on to say he gets chills just thinking about it. His new album, Where It's At, comes out September 9.


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Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWhich one of Nicole Kidman's famous husbands is taller? ANSWER:  Keith Urban reportedly stands 5'10", while Tom Cruise is allegedly only 5' 7".


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Jason Aldean Making Big Announcement Tonight; New Album, “Old Boots, New Dirt,” Due Out October 7

Broken Bow RecordsJason Aldean will release his new album, Old Boots, New Dirt, on October 7 featuring his latest hit, "Burnin' It Down." He revealed details on the album on BuzzFeed, where he'll host another surprise event Tuesday night at 8 ET.

Jason says, "It’s going to be a pretty big thing I think and something we’ve never done before.  Just hope everyone will tune in and check it out and see what we got going on."

As for the album title, Jason says it ties in with the "madness" he's experienced through in the last two years splitting with his wife in 2013 and forging a new relationship with girlfriend, Brittany Kerr.

Jason tells BuzzFeed, "In the last couple of years, it feels like everything I’ve done has been on blast, personally and professionally. That title and that song, ‘Old Boots, New Dirt,’ is about starting with a clean slate. I’m the same dude, but we’re gonna start over and hit some uncharted territory here.”

As evidenced by the lead single, Jason felt free to explore new sounds on Old Boots, New Dirts. The 15 songs on the album include everything from Southern rock and R&B to pop and classic country.

Jason says, "When we’re cutting a record, we don’t have any rules. It’s just about finding the best songs we can find.”

Here's the Old Boots, New Dirt track listing:
"Just Getting' Started"
"Show You Off"
"Burnin' It Down"
"Tryin' to Love Me"
"Sweet Little Somethin'"
"Laid Back"
"Tonight Looks Good on You"
"Too Fast"
"If My Truck Could Talk"
"Old Boots, New Dirt"
"I Took It with Me"
"Don't Change Gone"
"Miss That Girl"
"Gonna Know We Were Here"
"Two Night Town"


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Keith Urban Says Releasing Two Car Songs in a Row Is Just a Coincidence

Image Courtesy Capitol NashvilleIf you think it's by design that Keith Urban followed his hit "Cop Car" with another automobile song, "Somewhere in My Car," he says you'd be wrong.

"It's not intentional. It's just the themes, I guess, that hit some of my songs," he says. "Not all of them, it's just with these singles -- the order of the singles has seen this car theme, but they're the only car songs on the whole album."

Keith admits he is definitely a car aficionado, though.

"It's the first thing, for me, that I was excited to be able to get, my first car," he recalls, "and most people remember what their first car was. My dad was a car-lover, so I really inherited that. My taste in cars run the gamut of all sort of eclectic things, but it's trucks, too. I love trucks, cars, everything, and we've got some truck songs on the record. But, 'Somewhere in My Car' is really, it's not really about a car so much as it is what happens in the backseat of a car."

When he's in the front seat, the Aussie superstar does follow some more serious pursuits, it turns out.

 "It's where I still listen to more music than anywhere, probably, in the car," he says. "It's just a great place of sort of coming to terms with everything, you know what I mean? It's the only quiet place you can get, sometimes, is in the car, as well."

Next weekend, Keith takes his Raise 'Em Up tour to Irvine and Mountain View, California.


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Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockJosh Turner recently launched his Instagram account with a video of himself heading into the studio. His new single is called "Lay Low."

Lady Antebellum fans can get a sneak peek at their new album at ladyapassport.com, with song previews, videos and even a contest to win a cruise. 747 comes out September 30.

Alan Jackson:  25 Years of Keepin' It Country opened Labor Day Weekend at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. The exhibit runs through March of next year.

 
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