Willie Nelson to Headline Fourth Annual Heartbreaker Banquet at His Luck, Texas Ranch

Image Courtesy Shock InkWillie Nelson will perform at the fourth annual Heartbreaker Banquet at his Luck, Texas ranch near Austin. The event takes place March 19, and tickets are now on sale at HeartbreakerBanquet.com.

The Heartbreaker Banquet showcases artists in the roots music community and is timed to coincide with the South by Southwest conference each year. Willie’s son, Lukas Nelson, is also on the bill with his band, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real.

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Lady A’s Hillary Scott, RaeLynn and Craig Campbell Playing Nashville’s Tin Pan South Songwriters Festival

Image Courtesy Campbell Entertainment GroupLady Antebellum‘s Hillary Scott, RaeLynn, Casey James, Craig Campbell and Brandy Clark are on the performers lineup for the 23rd Annual Tin Pan South Songwriters Festival, March 24 through 28 in Nashville. The event takes places at multiple venues around Music City with 92 shows booked throughout the week.  Charlie Worsham, Josh Thompson and Vince Gill are also on the bill along with dozens of Nashville’s top songwriters.

Go to TinPanSouth.com for ticket and schedule information.

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Gary Allan Taps into His Rockabilly Past for New Single, “Hangover Tonight”

Image Courtesy MCA NashvilleGary Allan‘s new single, “Hangover Tonight,” finds him exploring a ’50s and ’60s-inspired sound, which is a very comfortable place for the singer. Gary tapped into his own musical history to co-write the song with Chris Stapleton and two other young Nashville hitmakers.

Gary says, “I was in rockabilly bands my whole life, and to me it was just a throwback to my youth writing with these guys.  It was a lot of fun.”

“Hangover Tonight” is the lead single from Gary’s new studio album, due out later this year.

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Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWho was Rascal Flatts‘ special guest on the hit song, “Easy”? ANSWER: Natasha Bedingfield.

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Carrie Underwood Welcomes Baby Boy, Isaiah Michael Fisher

Image Courtesy Jeremy Cowart/SonyCongratulations to Carrie Underwood and her husband, Mike Fisher, on the birth of their son, Isaiah Michael Fisher, February 27.

Carrie made the announcement on Instagram, posting a picture of the baby’s tiny hand. The caption reads, “Tiny hands and tiny feet…God has blessed us with an amazing gift!”

She adds, “Welcome to the world, sweet angel.”

Carrie and Mike were married in 2010. This is their first child.

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Kix Brooks Honored with First-Ever CMA Foundation Humanitarian Award

Image Courtesy Greenroom PRKix Brooks was honored with the CMA Foundation’s first-ever Humanitarian Award Monday night in Nashville. The two-hour gala was held at City Winery with Kix’s pal Reba leading the toast in his honor. Chris Young was also in the crowd to honor Kix for his work in growing the CMA Music Festival into a big fundraiser for school music education programs. He spearheaded those changes when he joined the CMA Board of Directors in 1998.

Kix was also recognized for his work on behalf of Nashville’s Monroe Carell, Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Next up for Kix, he’s kicking off a run of shows with Reba as one-half of Brooks & Dunn at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas starting this June.

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Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockCountry newcomer Mickey Guyton will make her national TV debut on ABC’s Good Morning America Friday singing her debut single, “Better than You Left Me.”

Rascal Flatts will perform the national anthem at the NASCAR race taking place at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 8.

George Strait and his Ace in the Hole band played their first gig at Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos, Texas. Kent Finlay owned the club and served as a mentor to George and many other aspiring singer/songwriters. Finlay died Monday, and George issued a statement, “Country music — and just music in general really — lost a great friend today. His legend will live forever in Texas, though. We’ll never forget our friend Kent Finlay. Sad day.”

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Randy Houser Creating Magic Moments Opening for Luke Bryan This Year

Image Courtesy Stoney Creek RecordsRandy Houser just wrapped up his first run of shows opening for Luke Bryan, and performing on Luke’s massive stage is requiring some adjustment for Randy.

He tells ABC Radio, “It is amazing all the real estate that’s out there. The big stage. There’s a lot of ground to cover.”

On some tours, Randy would be restricted to performing on a small portion of the stage, but Luke has given Randy the freedom to use the entire stage and all his video screens to create the best show possible.

“He’s so gracious,” Randy says of Luke. “Gives us access to all the production and everything. It’s just really neat. We’ve had a blast.”

Even though Randy is entertaining the largest audiences of his career, he still tries to create intimate moments during his concerts. He pulled that off recently by playing his latest hit, “Like a Cowboy,” backed up by a single acoustic guitar.

Randy says of that performance, “It was such an amazing thing to hear people really singing with me on it. It was, I don’t know, a really unexplainable feeling. Really, one of the best experiences I’ve ever had playing music.”

“Like a Cowboy” is the latest single from Randy’s current album, How Country Feels.

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Chase Bryant Earning a Reputation as Country Music’s Best New Chef

Image Courtesy Broken Bow Label GroupChase Bryant is a triple-threat when it comes to singing, writing and performing guitar on all his songs. His creativity doesn’t stop when he leaves the stage, though. Chase is fast becoming one of country music’s best chefs, too. He’s mastered Italian, Mexican and steak dishes in the past few years, but Chase’s specialty is still his grandmother’s fried chicken recipe.

Chase tells ABC Radio, “I like to make it like my grandma used to. Put it in a brown bag and shake it up and then toss it in the fryer and go to town.”

Lately, Chase has been drawing culinary inspiration from TV cooking shows like Chopped and Top Chef, and the results are pretty out there.

“I’m taking, like, wacky ideas like making these crazy sauces out of, like, cotton candy and different stuff,” Chase explains. “It’s crazy, but it’s really cool. I’m just way into it.”

Getting creative in the kitchen ultimately helps recharge Chase’s batteries when it’s time to make music again.

He says, “It’s a way to be creative in another way and kind of get away from the music for a minute and just kind of give it a break. So, that’s really cool. “

Chase is currently on the road with his Take It On Back tour. He’ll join Tim McGraw‘s Shotgun Rider tour starting in May.

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Faith Hill’s Pixie Cut Is Most-Googled Hairstyle from Oscars Red Carpet

Image Courtesy ABC/Rick RowellIf you notice a lot of women coming out of your local salon with much shorter hair, you can thank Faith Hill. According to Google, her blonde pixie cut was the most-searched hairstyle from the red carpet at last month’s Oscars.

Faith was on hand to support her husband, Tim McGraw, who sang the nominated song “I’m Not Gonna Miss You,” from the documentary Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me.

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