Easton Corbin Made Sure You’d Want to Hear “Baby Be My Love Song” Again and Again

Chris Hollo/Grand Ole OpryEaston Corbin knows his latest hit, “Baby Be My Love Song,” has probably gotten stuck in your head in the last few weeks, but he hopes the catchy song’s groove and tempo sound good to your ear.

Easton says, “That was probably one of the top things about this song that really appealed to me, and I first heard it, and I was like, ‘Man, this song just really sounds fresh.'”

As he was looking for songs for the new project, Easton played the tracks he liked several times over the course of a few weeks to see if they still affected him the same way. “Baby Be My Love Song” passed that test with flying colors.

“Every time I listened to it, it seemed new,” Easton explains. “I felt like if it did that to me, hopefully, my fans would react the same way.”

As “Baby Be My Love Song” makes its way towards the top of the country airplay chart, Easton can see his concert crowds love the song just as much as he does.

Says Easton, “It’s great when you get out there and people are singing it back to you. That’s probably one of the most rewarding things about watching a song progress up the charts.”

“Baby Be My Love Song” is the lead single from Easton’s new album, About to Get Real, due out Tuesday, June 30.

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Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockKelsea Ballerini will play her first headlining show in New York City July 16 at the Gramercy Theatre.

Hunter Hayes visited the campers from the ACM Lifting Lives Music Camp in the studio Monday while they recorded the original song they wrote, “Wherever You Go.” Hunter even played mandolin on the track. The annual camp caters to individuals with Williams syndrome through music enrichment programs.

Look for Darius Rucker on CBS’s The Talk Wednesday.

Get well wishes go out to Little Big Town‘s Jimi Westbrook, who had surgery Wednesday to remove a polyp from his vocal cord. He posted a “hospital selfie” on Instagram before going in the operating room. The surgery will keep LBT off the road through July 30.

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Hospital selfie. Let’s do this.

A photo posted by jimiwestbrook (@jimiwestbrook) on Jun 23, 2015 at 6:12am PDT


Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush” Controversy Paved the Way for Their Biggest Hit Yet

John Russell/CMALittle Big Town‘s latest single, “Girl Crush,” is on track to be the biggest hit of the band’s career, but the song was almost a bomb at country radio earlier this year. Instead of understanding the lyrics as depicting a jealous woman singing about the man she loves being in love with another woman, a few mistaken listeners complained about the song’s perceived lesbian subject matter. Those calls led a few stations to stop playing the song as much just as it was starting to climb the country chart.

LBT’s Kimberly Schlapman says, “I think that controversy, when it started, it was very disheartening, ’cause we just wanted the people to listen to the words of the song. Everybody has been rejected and can identify with rejection and jealousy.”

When it looked like “Girl Crush” might never become a hit at radio, country stars, including Reba, Dustin Lynch, Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert, rallied behind the song and started wearing “Girl Crush” hats in photos on social media. Miranda and Kelly Clarkson even performed covers of “Girl Crush” in concert, and the song has now been downloaded more than a million times. It currently sits in the top 10 at country radio.

Kimberly doesn’t think the song would have become the monster hit it is now without that initial resistance.

She says, “I think the controversy was important for a lot of reasons, and the main reason is that it took to a greater mass of people. So, all these people would not have heard this song had it not been for that controversy. So, it was certainly meant to be.”

While they’re thankful for the big exposure the “Girl Crush” controversy brought the song, Kimberly adds, “We like being on this side of it much better.”

Her band mate Phillip Sweet adds, “I’m glad that people leaned in and listened to the lyrics and what it really meant. I think it turned out beautifully.”

“Girl Crush” is included on Little Big Town’s album, Pain Killer, out now.

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Keith Urban Working with Chic Guitarist/Producer Nile Rodgers to Create “EDM-Country”

CMAKeith Urban is the latest country artist experimenting with EDM sounds. He’s been working in the studio with Chic guitarist and producer Nile Rodgers, who was recently featured on the Daft Punk hit “Get Lucky.”

According to Yahoo Music, the songs feature Keith’s banjo playing along with Nile’s signature guitar riffs to create something Nile calls “EDM-Country.” The rough tracks feature those instruments set to a club beat with Keith singing urgently on top of it all.

Nile says, “I really pushed him to sing at the top of his range. Keith was nervous about it; he wanted to do another take. But I told him I loved the way it sounds.”

Keith and Nile first met at a pre-Grammy party in February and instantly hit it off. No word on whether or not their collaboration will make the cut for Keith’s as-yet-untitled studio album, due out later this year. The lead single from that project, “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16,” is now climbing the country chart.

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Dolly Parton Honors Kansas School Teacher with the 2015 Chasing Rainbows Award

Webster PRDolly Parton presented Kansas teacher Dyane Smokorowski with the Chasing Rainbows Award from the National Network of State Teachers of the Year. The honor recognizes an outstanding educator who “has overcome great obstacles in his or her life, has captured the rainbow and is helping children.”

The presentation happened at Dollywood in East Tennessee. Dolly was the first recipient of the Chasing Rainbows Award in 2002 in honor of her worldwide reading program, The Imagination Library. She has gone on to present the Chasing Rainbows award every year since then.

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Chris Pratt Reveals Eric Church’s Role in Shaping His “Jurassic World” Performance

CMAIf you’ve caught Chris Pratt starring in the summer blockbuster Jurassic World, you might have noticed a little bit of Eric Church‘s trademark swagger in Chris’s performance. In an interview with GQ, Chris reveals he had “Dark Side,” a song from Eric’s album, The Outsiders, on repeat while making Jurassic World. He even said Eric’s name in a mantra he repeated before before the camera rolled: “Flow core, no TC, volume up point five, Eric Church.”

As for the rest of the mantra, GQ explains, ” ‘Flow core’ to remind him of his posture when he was paddleboarding. ‘Volume up point five’ to remind him to make his voice slightly louder. And as for ‘No TC’, that’s to remind Pratt to lead with his forehead, in a phrase only a formerly fat man would think to use: No triple chin.

Chris Pratt is on the cover of GQ’s July issue, on sale now.

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Jason, Luke and Dierks Team Up for Superstar Fishing Trip in Florida

Broken Bow RecordsTalk about a dream fishing trip. Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley all went out on a boat together in Florida Wednesday and caught a huge snapper.

Jason posted a photo on Instagram of the trio posing with their big catch. The caption reads, “Had a blast today fishin’ with my boys.” He added the hashtags #rippinlipsfloridastyle and #snapperfordinner.

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Kelsea Ballerini Feels the Love from Fellow Country Stars After Hitting #1 at Country Radio

John Russell/CMAKelsea Ballerini had a little party with her friend Hillary Scott of Lady Antebellum Monday night to celebrate her debut single, “Love Me Like You Mean It,” going to #1. The get-together took place at Hillary’s house in Nashville, and Kelsea posted a photo from the party on Instagram.


REPOST FROM @kelseaballerini: “celebrating. love these sweet friends.” ??????

A photo posted by Hillary Scott (@hillaryscottla) on Jun 22, 2015 at 9:57pm PDT


Several other stars posted their congratulations to Kelsea on Twitter:

Carrie Underwood — “Looks like @KelseaBallerini has a #1 on her hands! So awesome! Congrats…to the first of many! Looks like @KelseaBallerini has a #1 on her hands! So awesome! Congrats…to the first of many! #GirlPower #WomenRock”

Little Big Town — “Congrats to this babe on her first number one!!! We’re so proud of you. @kelseaballerini #LoveMeLikeYouMeanIt.

Dierks Bentley — “congrats to @KelseaBallerini on 1st number one! your next song dibs is money too. don’t know you but happy for ya!”

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Kacey Musgraves Taking Her Country & Western Rhinestone Revue to the US and Europe

Sandbox EntertainmentKacey Musgraves will kick off her new tour, The Kacey Musgraves Country & Western Rhinestone Revue, August 27 in Atlanta. The trek will include iconic venues through the U.S. and Europe including Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, The Apollo Theatre in New York City and London’s Royal Albert Hall.

Kacey is launching the new tour in support of her sophomore album, Pageant Material, in stores today. Tickets go on sale Friday, June 26.

Here are Kacey’s tour dates.  You can find more info at KaceyMusgraves.com:

8/27 — Atlanta, GA, The Buckhead Theatre
9/11 — Los Angeles, CA, The Wiltern
9/18 — St. Louis, MO, The Pageant
9/23 — Nashville, TN, Ryman Auditorium
10/1 — Detroit, MI, Royal Oak Music Theatre
10/3 — Philadelphia, PA, The Trocadero Theatre
10/9 — New Orleans, LA, The Howlin’ Wolf
10/11 — Tulsa, OK, Cains Ballroom
10/15 — Charlottesville, VA, Paramount Theater
10/16 — Washington, D.C., Lincoln Theatre
10/23 — New Haven, CT, College Street Music Hall
10/24 — New York, NY, Apollo Theater
11/9 — Gateshead, UK, Sage Gateshead
11/10 —  Birmingham, UK, The Institute
11/12 — Dublin, Ireland, Dublin Academy
11/15 — Glasgow, UK, Glasgow ABC
11/16 — Manchester, UK, Albert Hall
11/18 — London, UK, Royal Albert Hall
11/20 — Hamburg, Germany, Knust
11/22 — Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Melkweg

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Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockMiranda Lambert‘s boutique, The Pink Pistol, and her bed and breakfast, The Ladysmith, are located on the main drag in which Oklahoma town? ANSWER: Tishomingo.

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