Image Courtesy Grand Ole Opry/Chris HolloLittle Big Town got the surprise of a lifetime Friday night at the Grand Ole Opry when Reba joined them onstage to invite them to become the Opry’s newest members. As LBT wrapped up their performance of “Pontoon,” Reba walked out riffing on the song’s suggestive musical tag, “motorboatin’.” She then spoke of LBT’s commitment to playing the Opry since they made their debut on the show since 1999.
Of course, Little Big Town accepted the invitation. They’ll be formally inducted into the show on October 17 by Opry star Vince Gill.
Getting the big invite from their hero, Reba, made the Opry invitation even sweeter for Little Big Town’s Kimberly Schlapman.
She says, “I can’t believe it. We have wanted this for years, as long as we first stepped on that stage, this is what we wanted. Thank you, Jesus and Reba.”
Before their Friday night appearance on the Opry, Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild spent time with her father reflecting on the iconic female artists who have graced the Opry’s membership roster over the years. Karen had the backstage dressing room decorated with photographs of those women, including Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris and Tammy Wynette.
Kimberly says, “If you’re a woman on this wall, you are the you-know-what.”
Little Big Town has another major event this month. Their new album, Pain Killer, comes out October 21 featuring the hit single, “Day Drinking.”
Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleCole Swindell‘s career is off to an amazingly good start with his first two singles hitting #1 at country radio. Since he came onto the country scene, Cole’s life has kicked into overdrive, but his mentor and friend Luke Bryan is there to help him adjust to life in the spotlight.
“I’ve been around him probably the most over my career here in Nashville,” Cole says of Luke. “He’s always just told me to have fun. Like, literally, that’s what he said. Just have fun with it, ’cause I think he knows. He’s been there, and he knows how much I care about things in general. When I want to do something, I’m hard on myself. He wants me to enjoy it.”
While Cole’s career is on fire at the moment, he’s aware that every artist’s time at the top of the country heap is limited.
Says Cole, “I also know that they can turn around just like that, and it might not last for long. I’m trying to enjoy it while I can.”
Cole is currently opening for Luke on the Farm Tour. Go to ColeSwindell.com to see the full itinerary.
Image Courtesy Peets/Capitol NashvilleYou might assume from the title of Eric Church‘s new single, “Talladega,” that he’s penned a song about race cars and pit crews, but the Talladega International Speedway in Alabama only serves as the venue for the song’s story about the lives of the fans in the crowd. In fact, Eric actually lived out the lyrics to “Talladega” as a teenager, except he attended a NASCAR race at the Martinsville Speedway in Virginia.
Eric tells Billboard, “It was a thing where a group of your buddies go take stuff, tents, camp out, stay a few days, walk back and forth to the track.”
He adds, “I can’t tell you who won the race, but I could tell you all the experiences we had in a two- or three-day period.”
“Talladega” is the latest single from Eric’s current album, The Outsiders, available now.
Image Courtesy Broken Bow RecordsCountry newcomer Chase Bryant released his self-titled debut EP this week featuring his hit song “Take It on Back.” The 21-year-old native Texan co-wrote all five songs on the EP, and co-produced the project, too.
Chase is on the road with Brantley Gilbert‘s Let It Ride tour through the fall.
Here’s the Chase Bryant EP track listing:
“Wayfarer Weather” “Little Bit of You” “Change Your Name” “Jet Black Pontiac” “Take It on Back”
Image Courtesy Show Dog/UniversalToby Keith‘s Toby Keith Foundation is hosting its second annual Schooner Fall Classic golf tournament at Toby’s Belmar Golf Club in Norman, Oklahoma, this weekend. Seventeen of the nation’s Women’s Collegiate Golf teams will play in the tournament, spearheaded by Toby’s wife, Tricia. Proceeds from the tournament benefit Oklahoma City’s OK Kids Korral facility for pediatric cancer patients.
Tricia says, “We are hosting a tournament with an intended purpose, and that is to encourage these future golf professionals and business leaders to consider how fortunate they are to be able to travel the world and play golf, while introducing them to children who are battling cancer and fighting to stay alive”
Image Courtesy RCA Nashville/PearlGarth Brooks‘ new album is titled Man Against Machine. It comes out November 11 featuring the lead single, “People Loving People.”
As for the title, Garth was inspired to reflect how he sees mankind affected by technology. He says, “For 14 years, I have watched heart and soul, dreams and individualism, fighting for their very existence in a world of increasing technology. This album is a reminder to all those who dream, work and fight for what they believe; do not give up your vision.”
Image Courtesy Capitol NashvilleLady Antebellum‘s 7 for 7 campaign continued Thursday in Fort Meade, MD. The trio surprised army wife Carrie Warfel with a party on the base where her husband is stationed. They also treated her to a day at the spa and gave Carrie and her husband a trip to the 2015 ACM Awards in Dallas. Carrie’s husband was also surprised with a Polaris ATV.
Lady Antebellum is fulfilling seven wishes over seven days with their 7 for 7 campaign in connection with their brand-new album, 747, in stores now.
Image Courtesy RCA NashvilleMiranda Lambert is headed back on the road this January with her Certified Platinum tour, with special guest Justin Moore. RaeLynn, Sunny Sweeney, Ashley Monroe and Danielle Bradbery will be on the bill in select markets, too.
So far, Miranda has only announced the tour cities for the Certified Platinum tour. Venues will be announced soon:
Evansville, IN Lexington, KY Columbus, OH Charleston, SC Knoxville, TN Charleston, WV Spokane, WA Tacoma, WA Eugene, OR Toledo, OH Rockford, IL Peoria, IL Little Rock, AR Tulsa, OK Oklahoma City, OK Wichita, KS Dallas, TX Cedar Rapids, IA Grand Rapids, MI Birmingham, AL Bossier City, LA Biloxi, MS Hershey, PA Atlantic City, NJ New York, NY Manchester, NH Worcester, MA Uncasville, CT
Image Courtesy Broken Bow RecordsJason Aldean‘s new album, Old Boots, New Dirt, is coming out Tuesday, and he’s set to kick off that morning with a multi-song performance on NBC’s Today. Jason also will stop by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon that night.
To cap off his release week, Jason is headlining his annual Concert for the Cure on October 11 in Detroit. The concert raises money for Susan G. Komen in their fight against breast cancer. A portion of ticket sales from each city on Jason’s 2014 Burn It Down tour have gone to local Susan G. Komen affiliates.
Jason says of his upcoming Concert for the Cure, “It isn’t just about raising money to help find a cure, it’s also about celebrating everyone who is going through treatment now and those who’ve been able to beat the disease.”
Old Boots, New Dirt features Jason’s latest hit, “Burnin It Down.”