Eric Church Pays No Attention to Country Radio When Choosing His Opening Acts

Image Courtesy John Peets/Capitol NashvilleUnlike most country headliners, Eric Church doesn’t pay attention to country radio when choosing his opening acts. Instead, he books musical acts he’s passionate about, whether or not they could ever fit in the country format. That’s why you’ll see everyone from hard rock group Halestorm to Americana group The Lone Bellow on the road with Eric this year.

He tells the Lexington Herald-Leader, “I just thought it was cooler than who everybody else takes on tour. Everybody just repackages tours. That’s what happens in country music. That’s what happens in all kinds of music. They just take the same four or five people, whoever had a hit this year, whoever’s hot, and sticks them on the bill.”

Eric’s approach to booking supporting acts comes from his experience as a brand-new act opening for rock legend Bob Seger. Eric got the gig because Bob liked his music, an opportunity Eric wants to pass that opportunity on to his favorite up-and-coming acts.

“There is just so much music out there I love that doesn’t have the outlet,” Eric explains. ” You know what? We didn’t used to have the outlet, either”

He adds, “Going forward, this is something we’re going to continue to do.”

Check out Eric’s full tour schedule at

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWhat is the name of Miranda Lambert‘s boutique with locations in Tishomingo, Oklahoma and Lindale, Texas? ANSWER: The Pink Pistol.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Ashley Monroe Releasing New Album July 24 Featuring Latest Single, “On to Something Good”

Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleAshley Monroe‘s new, as-yet-untitled album will be out July 24 featuring the lead single, “On to Something Good.” The video for the track is now airing on CMT. Ashley’s new album is the follow-up to her 2013 critically acclaimed release Like a Rose.

Here’s the track listing for Ashley’s new album:

“On to Something Good”
“I Buried Your Love Alive”
“The Weight of the Load”
“The Blade”
“Winning Streak”
“From Time to Time”
“If Love Was Fair”
“Has Anybody Ever Told You”
“The Devil Don’t Want Me”
“Good at Leavin'”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockMiranda Lambert and her horse, Ellie, picked up a few ribbons at the Red River Welsh Pony Association Horse Show in Oklahoma over the weekend. You can check out the photos on Miranda’s Instagram account.



Eli Young Band’s new video for “Turn it On” is now airing on Vevo.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Miranda Lambert Rose to the Challenge of Writing Songs for New Movie, “Hot Pursuit”

Image Courtesy Sony Music NashvilleMiranda Lambert wrote the new song, “Two of a Crime,” specifically for the new Reese WitherspoonSofia Vergara comedy, Hot Pursuit. After seeing the trailer for the film, Miranda got to work on the song, which was a bit of a change for her.

She explains, “When you’re a songwriter, you write your own story, but to write for a movie, you sort of have to go and dive into the characters, ’cause they already have a story. So, it was a really unique experience as a songwriter.”

It helped that the story and setting of Hot Pursuit were right up Miranda’s alley.

“It was a Thelma and Louise theme and it was filmed in Texas,” Miranda explains.

Even though writing “Two of a Crime” was a different experience for Miranda, it won’t be the last song she writes for a movie.

She adds, “I’m proud of it, and I’ll definitely do it again.”

“Two of a Crime” is now available for download at iTunes. Hot Pursuit hits theaters Friday.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Hit Songwriter Chris Stapleton Reveals His Own Powerful Voice on Debut Project, “Traveller”

Image Courtesy Mercury NashvilleChris Stapleton is the songwriter behind big hits for everyone from George Strait and Kenny Chesney to Luke Bryan and Darius Rucker. He’s also one of the most celebrated singers in the Nashville music community, and now the rest of the world can enjoy Chris’s talent on the brand-new album, Traveller. The title track was written on a trip Chris took with his wife, Morgane, in 2013 following the death of his father.

Chris tells ABC Radio, “My wife had the presence of mind to know that I needed a little head-clearing space. So, she bought me an old Jeep out in Phoenix, Arizona, and we flew out there and drove back across the country in it. Along the way, I wrote that song kind of thinking about life and how we’re all just passing through it.”

Chris’s wife was also instrumental in picking the 14 songs that made the final cut on Traveller. The sound of the album took shape after Chris heard a bit of singer/songwriter Sturgill Simpson‘s critically acclaimed 2014 release, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music.  That project’s modern take on a vintage country sound led Chris to seek out Sturgill’s producer, Dave Cobb, to work on Traveller.

Speaking of Dave’s work on Metamodern Sounds in Country Music, Chris says, “The sound of it was so striking to me. I didn’t know that it was something that could still be done sonically, ’cause we had lost a lot of whatever that is in modernity and technology. So, I really set out to find Dave and I said, ‘I gotta at least meet this guy,’ and go, ‘Hey man, I like the sound of that record.'”

With Dave in the producer’s seat, Chris called on his long-time band members, bass player J.T. Cure and drummer Derek Mixon, to play on Traveller. Chris has been playing with J.T. for two decades, and he says, “It’s a unique thing to get to play music with people that know you that well.”

Chris’s small band is rounded out with Waylon Jennings‘ longtime steel guitar player, Robby Turner, and Willie Nelson‘s harmonica player, Mickey Raphael.

He says of adding those two legendary musicians to the lineup, “I got to have those little tips of the hat to that kind of music kind of quietly infused into the record.”

Chris has an album release show Tuesday night in New York City. Check out for a full list of tour dates.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Jana Kramer to Star in Musical Drama

Warner Music GroupJana Kramer has signed up for a role in an upcoming musical film, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Country Crush will focus on a city girl named Nancy Taylor who falls for a guy, Charlie, she meets while en route to a party in the country. He joins her in New York City as her music career takes off.

Kramer will play Charlie’s sister-in-law in the drama. The lead role of Nancy Taylor will be filled by newcomer Madeline Merlo.

Kramer’s most notable film credits include Click and Prom Night. She also had roles on the TV series One Tree Hill, 90210, Friday Night Lights and Entourage.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Dierks Bentley Scores First #1 Hit He Didn’t Write Himself with “Say You Do”

Image Courtesy Nino Munoz/CapitolDierks Bentley is no stranger to scoring #1 hits, but his latest single, “Say You Do,” is the first of his chart-toppers that he didn’t write himself. He’s thankful to Nashville-based songwriters Shane McAnally, Matt Ramsey and Trevor Rosen for letting him record the song.

Dierks says, “This town has of some of the most talented songwriters anywhere and they help guys like me live our dreams every night out on the road with their songs.”

“Say You Do” is the third-consecutive single from Dierks’ album Riser to score multiple weeks at #1 on the country songs chart. He’ll be singing those hits on the 2015 Sounds of Summer tour, launching June 5 in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Luke Bryan’s “Crash My Party” Is Now His Biggest-Selling Album Ever

Image Courtesy Capitol NashvilleLuke Bryan‘s latest studio album, Crash My Party, is now his biggest-selling release ever. According to Billboard and Nielsen Music, Luke’s fourth project has now sold 2.432 million copies, beating his previous bestseller, Tailgates & Tanlines, which has sold 2.429 million copies so far.

Crash My Party produced six hit singles, including Luke’s latest #1 hit, “I See You.”

Luke is working on the follow-up to Crash My Party in-between tour dates. He plays a two-night stand in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada this Wednesday and Thursday.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tyler Farr Wants to Leave a Lasting Impression in Country Music

Image Courtesy Sony Music NashvilleTyler Farr is riding high on the country chart again with his latest single, “A Guy Walks into a Bar,” a sad ballad that fits in with Tyler’s overall goal of building a lasting legacy in the country format. Even though he speaks in a gravelly mumble he compares to Billy Bob Thornton‘s character in Sling Blade, Tyler possesses one of country’s most expressive singing voices. He hopes his voice becomes his calling card in the years ahead.

“I want to be known as a stylist,” Tyler tells Rolling Stone. “I want to become a known voice in country music. That’s what I moved here for. I didn’t move here to [Nashville to] be mediocre.”

Tyler’s sophomore album, Suffer in Peace, is now on sale. He’s on the road with Jason Aldean for the rest of the year.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.