Blake Shelton Steps Into Stadium Headliner Status with Weekend Wrigley Field Show

Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleBlake Shelton took over Chicago’s Wrigley Field over the weekend to play for 40,000 fans on his Ten Times Crazier 2014 tour. Headlining a stadium show is a big leap for Blake, who got pretty comfortable opening for other big acts at those big shows in the past.

Looking back on that previous stadium experience as an opener, Blake says, “I remember thinking, ‘Gosh, I would not want to be Brad Paisley tonight or Rascal Flatts or George Strait‘ — whoever I was opening for at the time — because this is — talk about some pressure. I’m just gonna do my seven songs and see y’all later!”

Blake made it through just fine with his Wrigley Field show, and he’ll play two other iconic venues — Madison Square Garden and the Hollywood Bowl — in the coming weeks.

“The names of some of those venues, I think, is what’s really intimidating — not the size of them,” says Blake. He still hopes to impress his fans at those shows, adding, “You want to leave there having people say, ‘Man, that’s one of the better ones I’ve seen in this place.’”

Keep up with Blake’s tour dates at BlakeShelton.com.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Reba Enlists Keith Urban, The Band Perry and More for New Anthem, “Pray for Peace”

Image Courtesy Starstruck EntertainmentReba released her new song and video, “Pray for Peace,” Monday, and several other country stars got in on the act. The Band Perry posted a video of themselves doing the “Pray for Peace” hand motions, and Keith Urban enlisted his famous wife, Nicole Kidman, and their two kids to make a video as well.

 Reba got the idea to write the anthem last year while walking around her home in Gallatin, Tennessee, just outside Nashville. She says, “For days I’d sing, ‘Pray for Peace,’ over and over. It wasn’t until several months later did the other parts start to fall in place. Some, not until we got into the studio to record it.”

The country superstar considers “Pray for Peace” to be a gift from God.

“I have never worked on a song as long as this one,” Reba adds. “It went from a bass drum, fiddle and singers to guest artist singing with me, adding more instruments and even a choir and a bagpipe! It’s an act of perseverance, prayer, hope, fellowship and mostly love.”

Ronnie Dunn, Kelly Clarkson and newcomer Caroline Kole lend their voices to “Pray for Peace” as well. You can download it for free at Reba.com.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Does Taylor Swift Primp Post-Workout for Paparazzi?

Bret Hartman/CBSEver since Taylor Swift moved to New York City, her every move has been tracked by the paparazzi, and her smart street style has been the subject of dozens of gushing fashion blog entries.  While Taylor has claimed that that no thought goes into her chic, perfectly-groomed appearance, a source claims that she actually spends a great deal of time primping for the paps.

The reported source tells the New York Daily News that after her almost daily workouts at the Model Fit gym — which was recommended to her by supermodel pal Karlie Kloss — Taylor “spends an hour in the locker room post-workout so she can look flawless for the photographers who follow her.”

According to the paper, Taylor’s trainer at the gym is the same guy the Victoria’s Secret models use to get that long, lean look.

In May, Taylor joked sarcastically to E! Online that she had an “entire wing in my house” dedicated to planning her outfits, which she spends “months” doing.  She then insisted, “I decide what I’m gonna wear, like, five minutes before I walk out the door and I shop where most girls shop.”


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Shania Twain Announces Final Performance of Las Vegas Show “Shania: Still the One”

Sandbox EntertainmentShania Twain was just named Best Resident Performer in Las Vegas by Las Vegas Weekly for her Caesars Palace show Shania: Still the One, but it isn’t going to keep her around in Sin City any longer.

The star has announced that she’ll wrap up her two-year residency at the Colosseum on December 13, 2014.   In a statement, she says, “At the beginning of this amazing journey, through the rediscovery for my love of performing, I knew the stage would feel like home, but it turned out that Las Vegas itself became ‘home’. Performing for fans who come from all over the world to see the show night-after-night warms my heart.”

She adds, “I started the first international Shania Kids Can clubhouse in Las Vegas because I love this city, and my time here has given me more than anyone can ever know. I can’t thank Las Vegas enough.”

Tickets for Shania’s final 16 performances are on sale now.  They include:

Oct.:  8, 10, 11, 14, 15, 17, 18, 21, 24, 25
Dec.:  6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 13 

Shania is currently working on new music.



Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Tim McGraw on Concert Slapping Incident: “I Think You Just Got to Move On”

Image Courtesy Big Machine RecordsTim McGraw is speaking out on that video of him swatting a female fan who was grabbing his jeans at a show in Atlanta weekend before last. Video of the incident went viral, but Tim insists he didn’t intentionally swipe the woman.

The country star tells ET Canada, “I reacted in an instinctive, defensive way from my perspective of what was going on. I think it was an unfortunate situation I think all the way around. But it happened, it happened in a split second, it was pure instinctive reaction, I think you just got to move on.”

Allowing fans to touch him during shows puts Tim in a vulnerable position, too.

He adds, “You are in that position, you are out there, you are vulnerable, things happen and sometimes you react. There’s nothing to be said about it.”

Tim’s Sundown Heaven Town tour continues Tuesday night in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Luke Bryan, Eric Church, FGL and Blake Shelton Added to CMA Music Festival Special Lineup

Image Courtesy Donn Jones/CMAThe CMA Music Festival: Country’s Night to Rock special just added a lot of star power to the lineup. Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Brantley Gilbert, Lady Antebellum, and Blake Shelton are all slated to sing on the show, airing Tuesday, August 5 at 8 ET on ABC.

Little Big Town returns for their second turn as hosts. They join previously announced performers Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban, Cole Swindell, Hunter Hayes, Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, and Thomas Rhett.

The CMA Music Festival special was filmed at the event of the same name held last month in Nashville.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Brett Eldredge Explains Why Working Out Is Essential to His Life on the Road

Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleBrett Eldredge works out constantly to look good onstage, but it turns out the exercise is essential to keeping up with his hectic tour schedule.

He tells Michigan’s Jackson Citizen Patriot, “This job is more than just singing. You’ve got to stay healthy because being on the road is hard on your body.”

When he’s playing arenas, Brett usually runs the stairs before his concerts.

“I do a lot of high-impact cardio and then go hammer out the weights, when they are available,” Brett explains. “When they aren’t, I use this great 100 push-ups app. I also use a seven-minute workout app.”

Brett will be working it out on Keith Urban‘s Raise ‘Em Up tour all summer long.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockName the hit song featuring Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan and Eric Church. ANSWER: “The Only Way I Know.”


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockBlake Shelton on Sunday shared his thoughts on Maverick and The Rockford Files actor James Garner, who died at the age of 86. Blake tweeted, “Damn sad to hear about James Garner passing away.. One of my favorite actors ever. Always wanted to meet him…”

Brad Paisley made good on his promise to perform “Whiskey Lullaby” with Rising Star contestant Sarah Darling on the Grand Ole Opry Saturday night. Sarah was eliminated from the ABC music completion last week, and Brad extended the invitation to sing with him during that live broadcast.

Tyler Farr shares photos of his just-purchased “dream home” with People.com. The 2,200-square-foot log cabin sits next to a river on 32 acres of land an hour south of Nashville. Jason Aldean lives down the road.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Jason Aldean Reveals How He Ended Up Drinking an Afternoon Away with Kenny Chesney

Image Courtesy Broken Bow RecordsHow did Jason Aldean and Kenny Chesney end up drinking a recent afternoon away together at a Nashville-area location of the chain restaurant Buffalo Wild Wings? Jason recently posted a photo on Instagram of himself partying with Kenny. It turns out Jason just sat down at the restaurant with his girlfriend, Brittany Kerr, when he got a call from Kenny.

Jason says, “He goes, ‘Well, I’m at somewhere. We’ve been drinking margaritas all day.’ I was like, ‘Well, come over here and meet us. We just sat down.  We’ll have a beer. Whatever.’”

Jason’s invitation turned to hours of drinking beer, tequila and rum once Kenny showed up.

“All I do know is, I think we ended up calling a car to take us home,” Jason says.  He adds, “Kenny,  he’s a funny dude, man.”

Jason and Kenny have been friends for several years now, but they truly became peers when Jason started headlining stadium shows. Since Kenny has played more than 100 NFL stadium concerts, Jason often goes to him for pointers on how to connect with fans in such a large venue.

Says Jason, “He’s a good guy to kind to have there to kinda talk to about stuff and bounce ideas off of, and been there-done that kind of thing. And still, as long as he has been in the business, he still loves what he does.”

Jason just headlined stadiums in Cleveland and Cincinnati this weekend, and he expects Kenny to get back out on the concert trail in a big way in 2015, too.

Jason says with a laugh, “I know he’s taking some time off right now, and he’s, like, already over it. He’s ready to get on the road.”

Jason debuted a sexy new song, titled “Burnin’ It Down,” at his weekend concerts. He expects to have a new album out by the end of the year.


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