Lauren Alaina Headed Back in the Studio After Undergoing Secret Vocal Cord Surgery in August

Image Courtesy Mercury/19American Idol finalist-turned-country star Lauren Alaina is back in the studio and stepping back into the spotlight after undergoing vocal cord surgery in August. She kept the surgery a secret until making an appearance at the Nashville premiere for the movie The Best of Me Thursday night.

Lauren explains, “I just started singing again, and I can still do that, so that’s great news. ‘Cause I was scared to death, but I’m gonna start recording here in the next couple months and try to get everything out.”

After the surgery, Lauren couldn’t say anything at all for a full eight days. She adds, “Eight days after that I could talk for five-minutes a day, which, you might as well just not talk at that point. I mean, what are you going to say in five minutes? Have you met me?”

The doctor told Lauren she would need the surgery at some point, and she could’ve found herself out on tour having to cancel dates due to the vocal problems.

She says, “I had to do it. There was really no other choice for me.”

Now that she’s back in the studio, Lauren is ready to record material as a 20-year-old woman. She made her debut album at age 16 after finishing second to Scotty McCreery on American Idol. Her young age limited the kind of material she could take on with her hit debut album, Wildflower.

Lauren says of the time since she made her first album, “I’ve grown up a lot and learned a lot about myself.”

Lauren’s debut project, Wildflower, bowed at #2 on Billboard‘s Country Album chart and #5 on the overall Billboard 200 tally in 2011. It’s gone on to sell more than 300,000 copies.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

George Strait Releasing Deluxe Edition of “The Cowboy Rides Away” Live Album November 10

Image Courtesy MCA NashvilleA deluxe CD/DVD edition of George Strait‘s The Cowboy Rides Away: Live from AT&T Stadium will be released exclusively at Walmart on November 10. The expanded version features 28 live tracks on two-CDs and a DVD of the 40-song show at George’s final tour stop on June 7, 2014 in Dallas.

A single-disc version of this live project was released a few weeks back. The new version includes all of those tracks as well as George’s collaboration with Eric Church on “Easy Come, Easy Go,” Alan Jackson on “Amarillo by Morning,” Miranda Lambert on “How ‘Bout Them Cowgirls” and Kenny Chesney on “The Fireman.”

Exclusive interviews with Strait are also included on the deluxe edition. Other special pre-order offers are available at MyPlayDirect.com/George-Strait.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

Lady Antebellum Going into Georgia Music Hall of Fame Saturday

Image Courtesy Capitol NashvilleLady Antebellum will be inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame at a ceremony Saturday night in Atlanta. Since she hails from Tennessee, band member Hillary Scott wasn’t sure she’d get to share the honor with band mates, Georgia natives Dave Haywood and Charles Kelley.

Hillary tells ABC News Radio she didn’t believe their manager when he told her she was included in the honor. She says, “I’m like, ‘So, the whole state of Georgia is OK with a Tennessee girl being inducted.’ We were joking and saying, ‘I guess if more than 50 percent of the band is from that state, then you’re in.’”

In all seriousness, Hillary says the honor is very humbling. As for Dave, he and Charles were surrounded by Georgia’s rich musical heritage growing up in Augusta, which was the home of R&B legend James Brown.

Dave says, “You grow up around that, and you’re really influenced by that.”

This honor marks the first time Lady Antebellum has entered any kind of Hall of Fame, too.

“It feels like you’re really being recognized as something you can show your grandkids one day,” says Dave. “This is a big, kind of, first for us to be recognized at this level. It’s that much sweeter being from our home state.”

The Georgia Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony takes place Saturday night at the George World Congress Center in Atlanta. Country comedian Jeff Foxworthy is also being inducted.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Jon Pardi Launching Up All Night Club Tour This Weekend with Two Sold-Out Shows

Image Courtesy UMGJon Pardi’s Up All Night headlining club tour kicks off this weekend with sold-out dates in Lincoln and Omaha, Nebraska. The trek comes on the heels of Jon’s stint opening Dierks Bentley‘s RISER tour with Chris Young and Chase Rice in the past few months.

Says Jon, “It’s been a great summer with Dierks and the guys.  Now it’s time to hit the clubs and share some new music we’ve been working on with the fans.” 

Jon will play a lot of tunes from his debut album, Write You a Song, which has already produced the gold-selling hit single “Up All Night.” His new single, “When I’ve Been Drinkin’,” is also included on the debut project.

For a full list of tour dates, go to JonPardi.com.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

Alan Jackson Launches Country Music Hall of Fame Residency with Two-Hour-Plus Show

Image Courtesy Rick Diamond/Getty Images/Schmidt PRAlan Jackson played for two hours and 22 minutes during the first of two Artist-in-Residence shows at the Country Music Hall of Fame Wednesday night in Nashville. Alan’s band members say they don’t remember him ever playing a show that lasted over two hours.  The usually-reserved Alan also talked to the audience quite a bit throughout the night.

The set list included performances of Alan Jackson classics “Gone Country” and “I Don’t Even Know Your Name,” as well as recent hits such as “Good Time” and “As She’s Walking Away.” After Alan sang a brand-new song, titled “Angels and Alcohol,” the audience gave him a standing ovation.

At first Alan was concerned the new song was too sad to sing. He told the crowd, “I don’t know why, but those sad ones are easier to write. I love listening to them, I love singing them, and I love writing them.” 

Alan returns for another sold-out performance at the Country Music Hall of Fame’s CMA Theater on October 22. He’s also featured in an exhibit at the Hall of Fame titled Alan Jackson: 25 Years of Keepin’ It Country.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWhich Blake Shelton hit refers to a dentist visit that goes awry? ANSWER: “Some Beach.”


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Montgomery Gentry Offering “Headlights” Bundle to Raise Money for Breast Cancer Research

Image Courtesy Monarch PublicityMontgomery Gentry has teamed up with GhostTunes to offer a new bundle to help promote breast cancer awareness and fund research on the disease. The offering includes the duo’s latest single, “Headlights,” as well as a t-shirt with “Check Your Headlights” printed on the front along with an image of the grill of a vintage, pink Cadillac.

The duo’s Troy Gentry wanted to get involved with the cause because of his wife and two daughters. As for Eddie Montgomery, he had a very personal reason for saying yes to this effort.

“Given my own personal battle with cancer and our blessed lives as husbands and fathers, Troy and I are always looking for ways to give back,” Eddie says. “We hope our fans will have fun with this exclusive ‘Check Your Headlights’ bundle on GhostTunes and help make a difference.”

Look for a new album from Montgomery Gentry to hit stores early next year.



Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Robin Roberts Hosting “Countdown to the CMA Awards” Special November 3

Image Courtesy ABC/Ida Mae AstuteA new Robin Roberts special will premiere on ABC Monday, November 3 featuring some of country’s top stars paying tribute to the genre’s rich history. Countdown to the CMA Awards: 15 Songs That Changed Country Music will feature musical tributes from Lady Antebellum, Hunter Hayes, Kacey Musgraves and Martina McBride.

Tim McGraw, Brad Paisley, Florida Georgia Line, Darius Rucker, Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, Dierks Bentley, Rascal Flatts and a few other stars will also appear to talk about their favorite country songs.

Countdown to the CMA Awards: 15 Songs That Changed Country Music airs Monday, November 3 at 10 p.m. ET on ABC. The 48th Annual CMA Awards will broadcast Wednesday, November 5 at 8 p.m. ET live from Nashville on ABC.



Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockBrandy Clark and The Cadillac Three‘s Jaren Johnston will play the CMA Songwriters Series show at the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville on Tuesday, November 4.

Jerrod Niemann‘s video for “Buzz Back Girl” premieres Thursday.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

“Nashville” Recap: “I Can’t Get Over You to Save My Life”

Image Courtesy ABCOn Wednesday’s Nashville, Rayna Jaymes and Luke Wheeler struggled to settle on a wedding date to their demanding tour schedules. Luke wanted to go ahead with a date just a month away, but Rayna was concerned her daughter Maddie wasn’t ready to accept Luke just yet. Maddie has been getting to know her biological father, Deacon Claybourne, and isn’t happy Rayna is marrying Luke over her father.

Rayna came up with the idea to combine her tour with Luke’s so they could spend more time together. Time will tell if the superstar couple makes it down the aisle, though.

Juliette Barnes went on concealing her pregnancy after finding out the baby actually belongs to her ex-boyfriend, Avery Barkley. Juliette was sitting in her car outside Avery’s house getting ready to tell him the news when he stumbled up drunk with a random girl. Instead of telling Avery or her manager, Juliette ended up on Rayna’s front porch asking for advice at the end of the episode.

Gunnar Scott and Scarlett O’Conner’s undeniable chemistry continued to annoy Gunnar’s girlfriend, Zoey. Now she’s got even more competition for Gunnar’s attention with his first love, Kylie, showing up in Nashville. Even though he pledged his love to Zoey, Gunnar couldn’t help but head to the café where Kylie works to see her. Look for this situation to play out in the coming weeks.

Will Lexington and Layla Grant’s marriage continued to fray as she used his homosexuality as leverage to advance her own singing career. When Will couldn’t land Layla a spot on Luke Wheeler’s tour, she ended up going to record label executive Jeff Fordham‘s house with an ultimatum. If Jeff didn’t give her a record deal, she’d out Will, who is the hottest new act on Jeff’s label. For his part, Will is growing even more frustrated hiding his sexuality and begins a secret affair with his male trainer, Tony.

Will and Layla managed to keep it together to perform a duet on this week’s show, titled “If Your Heart Can Handle It.” You could cut the tension between them with a knife during the performance, and Aubrey Peeples, who plays Layla, tells ABC News Radio to expect the couple’s story to play out through music.

She says of her character, “In any kind of challenge, you find out a lot about yourself and figure out how you deal with tough situations. It’s gonna reflect itself in her music. She’s gonna be fighting for this career of hers, and I think the music that Layla gets to do is really exciting, and I really like it.”

Singing pop-country on Nashville has allowed Aubrey to grow as a singer, too.

“I am a blues singer, and I love old country,” she says. “I listen to a lot of that, and then getting to do pop-country is something that I don’t really do in my regular life, but that I’ve been so honored to get to explore another genre of music on the show.”

“If Your Heart Can Handle It” is now available for download at iTunes. Nashville returns with an all-new episode next Wednesday night at 10 ET on ABC.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio