Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockHunter Hayes makes a brief appearance in which Oscar-nominated 1997 Robert Duvall film? Answer: Hunter is seen playing the accordian in The Apostle.

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Nashville Notes


Burke/Triolo Productions/ ThinkstockDancing With the Stars’ Erin Andrews and Brittany Snow from Pitch Perfect will host the 2015 CMT Music Awards. The show airs live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena June 10. 

Kellie Pickler performs the national anthem to kick off the Saturday CMA Music Festival concert at Nashville’s LP Field June 13. She’ll also receive the Operation Troop Aid Chris Kyle Patriot Award for her work with the troops.

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Kenny Chesney Confesses His Love for Grace Potter


Image Courtesy Sony/Blue ChairWith two hits under his belt with Grace PotterKenny Chesney says it’s no coincidence he keeps recording with the lead singer of the Nocturnals.

“I love her. I really do. You know, she doesn’t have a voice. She’s got a God-given instrument. She really does,” he says. The two first charted with “You and Tequila” in 2011, and Grace sings with Kenny on his latest hit, “Wild Child.”

Her live presence is also part of her appeal for Kenny. “I don’t know if you guys have ever seen her live, but when they’re on,” he says, referring to the Nocturnals, “it’s like a revival. It really is. It’s like a religious experience.” Grace joined Kenny onstage back in March for the kickoff of the Big Revival tour.

His next stop is this Thursday night in Evansville, Indiana, with Jake Owen and Chase Rice opening.

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Garth Brooks Cancels Tampa, Florida Tour Dates

Nancy Seltzer & Assoc.Garth Brooks‘ Tampa, Florida fans are paying a price for seeing their National Hockey League team, the Lightning, making it to the Stanley Cup Final.

It seems the NHL and NBC scheduled game two of the series against the Chicago Blackhawks at Tampa’s Amalie Arena on June 6 — the same day Brooks and his wife Trisha Yearwood were to perform two concerts. Garth and Trisha have now decided to cancel those dates, as well as another show scheduled for the night before, citing “safety considerations.”

A statement posted on the arena’s webstite, quotes the couple as saying, “All parties looked into moving Saturday’s two Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood shows to Sunday. The issue of getting the network crews and their gear out of the building and getting our crews and gear into the building late Saturday/early Sunday for two shows on Sunday raises serious safety concerns.”

“It is because of those safety concerns that the choice is being made to refund all shows and reschedule depending on finding a date that works for both the arena and the tour, the statement continues.

“This was a hard decision for everyone,” Brooks, 53, and Yearwood, 50, note before concluding, “We are convinced everything that could have been done was done to try to remedy the situation. Congrats again to the City of Tampa, good luck, and we will be watching the series!!!”

Garth and Trisha’s next shows are scheduled for June 12 and 13 in Birmingham, Alabama’s Legacy Arena at the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex.

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Hunter Hayes Rolls Sleeves Up for American Red Cross

Ray Burmiston/Warner Music NashvilleWhile Hunter Hayes in on the Wheels Up Tour with Lady Antebellum and Sam Hunt this summer, he’s starting his own Sleeves Up movement to help the American Red Cross. He’s challenging 21,000 of his fans to pledge to donate blood or platelets through a virtual drive online, a tie-in with his new single, “21.”

“There is a line… that says ‘life ain’t long enough,’” he explains. “I wanted to team with the American Red Cross to honor and celebrate all of those individuals who are constantly giving back and trying to make lives longer and better for sick patients around the country.”

Hunter will highlight special fans on social media through the hashtag #HH21SleevesUp, giving away concert tickets and writing the names of loved ones on a special Martin guitar. He’s also vowing to confront his own fear of needles and donate blood himself.

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Jake Owen Takes “Real Life” from Waffle House to White House

RCA NashvilleIt was a whirlwind week for Jake Owen, as real life took him from the Waffle House to the White House. After releasing his new single, also titled “Real Life,” Jake invited his Twitter followers to meet him at a Nashville location of the restaurant famous for its scattered, smothered and covered hash browns, even offering to buy. Soon after, he Instagrammed a video from inside the restaurant mentioned in the song, showing a standing room-only crowd with a line stretching outside.

The next day found Jake in Washington, D.C., posting a video of himself standing outside the White House declaring, “Yesterday I was at the Waffle House, today I’m at the White House.” Later that evening, Jake performed at the Columbia, Maryland stop on Kenny Chesney’s Big Revival tour.

Jake also found time to squeeze in some work on his new album. “Real Life” is the first single from his fifth CD, due out later this year.

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Shania Twain Says Writing for New Album Is Almost Finished

Image Courtesy Sandbox EntertainmentShania Twain may be wrapping up her career as a touring performer, but she has new music planned for fans this fall.

Shania tells the Las Vegas Sun’s Robin Leach that she’s almost finished writing songs for her new album and she’ll start recording it in the fall after she finishes her upcoming tour.

Having wrapped up two weeks of rehearsals in Sin City, Shania kicks off her final road tour on Friday, June 5 in Seattle and winds things down in Toronto in October. She promises to play all her hits on tour, but warns the production will be tilted toward the rock side, including a new version of “Party for Two,” her hit duet with Billy Currington. She’s still entertaining the idea of debuting some of her new material on the road.

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Kip Moore Says “Traveling Circus” and Fans Inspired New Album

MCA NashvilleKip Moore’s second album will be called Wild Ones, and in a new video preview of the album, Kip says it was inspired by “the traveling circus that our life has become” and the folks who come to his concerts.

“I think the fans had so much to do with this record because I now know who my fanbase is,” he says in the video, posted to YouTube. “I refused to make a record that doesn’t represent who we are and what they want to hear.”

The “Somethin’ ‘Bout A Truck” hitmaker co-wrote all of the album’s 13 tracks, including the lead single “I’m to Blame,” as well as “Lipstick,” a tune that namechecks the cities Kip has visited while playing 200 dates a year.

Here’s the track list for Wild Ones, which comes out Friday, August 21:

“Wild Ones”
“Come and Get It”
“Girl of Summer”
“That Was Us”
“What Ya Got On Tonight”
“Heart’s Desire”
“I’m to Blame”
“That’s Alright With Me”
“Running for You”
“Comeback Kid”

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Brett Eldredge Takes Two Fans on a Leap of Faith

Image Courtesy: Katie Storr/Stuart Cove’s Dive BahamasBrett Eldredge continues to live up to his reputation as an adrenaline junkie — and this time, he took two lucky fans along for the ride. Lindsay Bade says she entered Muck Boot’s Facebook contest every day to win the chance for her and her fiancé to zipline with Brett at AdventureWorks in Kingston Springs, Tennessee.

While being on stage remains Brett’s number-one thrill, he admits ziplining at 30 miles an hour, 90 feet off the ground is a pretty close second.

“That one was the most scary and the most fun! The only other time I had that feeling was when I went skydiving,” Brett tells People. “That leap into the air is so scary, but it’s also the time you feel most alive. You don’t want to do it, but then you do it and you feel so alive. Sometimes you just have to let go and take the jump, the leap of faith.”

The country heartthrob built his daredevil reputation on celebrating each of his number ones with a new feat. Brett jumped out of a plane for “Don’t Ya” and swam with the sharks to mark “Beat of the Music.” Next up, he’ll eat dinner on a table suspended 300 feet above ground by a crane to commemorate “Mean to Me.” “I’m thinking baby back ribs,” he quips.

Monday night, Brett performs his latest hit, “Lose My Mind,” on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Myers.

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Rascal Flatts’ Jay DeMarcus Says Having So Many Hits Is a Blessing and a Curse

Image Courtesy Big Machine RecordsWhen Rascal Flatts kicks off their Riot tour this weekend, fans don’t have to worry about whether or not the band will be playing the songs that made them famous.

“That’s what we all hope and dream to do when we stand in front of the mirror with our Goody comb and sing into it, is to have a bunch of songs that have touched people so much that they want to hear ‘em every night,” Jay DeMarcus says.

But he admits performing their hits night after night can be redundant.

“While it does, fifty shows in, get old singing ‘God Bless the frickin’ Broken Road,’” he jokes, “I’m so happy that we have that song to do it, and I’m so thrilled that people care enough to wanna pay money to see us sing that every year,” he reflects.

Jay believes having so many hits can be both a blessing and a curse, but ultimately, he knows how he feels about it.

“It kinda limits what you’re able to do with your live show and you can only switch it up and change it up so many different ways. But, when I stop and think about it when we’re off the road, I actually miss playing those songs ‘cause they’ve been such a big part of people’s lives.”  

Rascal Flatts’ first stop on their summer tour is tonight at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre in St. Louis.

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