Eric Church Opening Nashville’s Ascend Amphitheater with Rare Solo Show July 30

Image Courtesy Jon Peets/EMI NashvilleEric Church will give a rare solo show to open Nashville’s brand-new Ascend Amphitheater in Riverfront Park on July 30. The concert will feature Eric playing with just his guitar. He sold out Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena in June setting an attendance record with more than 18,000 fans in the audience.

Tickets for Eric’s solo show go on sale Thursday, April 30 through Ticketmaster.

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Tyler Farr Announces TV Appearances in Support of “Suffer in Peace”, Due Out Next Tuesday

Image Courtesy Joseph Llanes/Sony Music NashvilleTyler Farr‘s new album, Suffer in Peace, comes out Tuesday, and he’s kicking off his promotional schedule for the project with a Friday morning performance on FOX News’s Fox & Friends. The appearances continue Tuesday morning on NBC’s Today. That night, Tyler will host an album release party with a performance at New York City’s Irving Plaza.

Suffer in Peace features Tyler’s latest hit, “A Guy Walks into a Bar,” as well as a duet with Jason Aldean on “Damn Good Friends.”

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Zac Brown Band Releases New Single from “Jekyll + Hyde”; Announces TV Appearances

Image Courtesy Southern Ground/Varvatos/Republic/BMLGZac Brown Band‘s new album, Jekyll + Hyde, comes out this Tuesday featuring the country hit “Homegrown,” as well as their first song to impact Mainstream Rock radio: “Heavy Is the Head,” featuring Chris Cornell. They’re following up “Homegrown” with the new single, “Loving You Easy,” just delivered to country radio Thursday — you can start previewing samples from the full album Friday on Zac Brown Band’s YouTube channel.

Zac Brown Band recorded the album at their Southern Ground Studios in Nashville. Zac says, “We took more time writing and recording this record than we ever have in the past. We allowed each song to be what it wanted and needed to be. Each song has its own unique identity.”

Pop star Sara Bareilles joins Zac Brown Band on the song “Mango Tree.” Look for the band to promote Jekyll + Hyde with performances Monday on ABC’s Good Morning America and NBC’s Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

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Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWhat is the title of Billy Currington‘s duet with Shania Twain? ANSWER: “Party for Two.”

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Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, Brett Eldredge & More Drinking Fine Wine for a Good Cause Monday

Image Courtesy CMADierks Bentley, Eric Church, Brett Eldredge, Martina McBride and members of Little Big Town will be drinking fine wine for a great cause this Monday night in Nashville. The T.J. Martell Foundation’s 16th Annual Nashville Best Cellars Dinner brings some of country’s top stars together with some of the nation’s top wine collectors for an evening of food and drink.

The event takes place at Nashville’s City Winery. Proceeds go to the T.J. Martell Foundation’s funding of leukemia, cancer and AIDS research.

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“Nashville” Recap: “The Storm Has Just Begun”

Image Courtesy ABCHope was wearing thin for Deacon Claybourne on Wednesday night’s episode of Nashville. He’s still waiting on a donor for his liver transplant. Doctors found a donor and actually rolled Deacon into the operating room, but the donor turned out to have cancer on their lungs, so the doctors couldn’t risk introducing more cancer to Deacon’s body.

After getting that bad news, Rayna Jaymes and her daughter, Maddie, struggled to come to terms with Deacon’s illness and possible death.

Juliette Barnes hoped the Note by Note charity fundraiser would serve as her comeback after having her baby, but she was denied the chance to perform when pop star Jade St. John outbid her to give a command performance. Jade gave that opportunity to Layla Grant, who is a main competitor of Juliette’s. Juliette and Jade ended up having a showdown at the event, which upset Juliette’s husband, Avery Barkley. Once he called her out on her behavior, Juliette admitted she was struggling with feeling like a has-been career-wise after having the baby.

Jade got turned down for a duet with her hero, Luke Wheeler, in her bid to cross over from pop to country. They ended up spending more time together at the Note by Note gala and then out at the Bluebird Café, where Jade got up and sang one of Luke’s old hits, “Shotgun.” Luke must have liked her performance because he kissed her and went into her room once they got back to her hotel.

There’s only so far that relationship can go since Christina Aguilera, who plays Jade, is only slated to appear through next week’s episode. Though she hasn’t spent that much time in Nashville, Christina knows what the Bluebird Café means to the city’s music scene.

She says, “Here in Nashville, the Bluebird is such a staple here, and lines are always just across the side of the block for this place. I get the special, intimate vibe that it holds here. It’s a special thing.”

Performing on the Bluebird Café set on the Nashville sound stage helped Christina really inhabit her character.

Christina explains, “Being there in such a small, sort of intimate place sort of holds its on magic and was able to inspire me in a different way to bring a certain emotion to the song.”

“Shotgun” is now available for download at iTunes along with all of the other music from this week’s episode. Nashville is back with another new episode Wednesday night at 10 ET on ABC.

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Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockCountry legend John Anderson will release a brand-new album, Goldmine, on May 26.

Reba appears on CBS’s The Talk Thursday.

Zac Brown Band performs on NBC’s Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Monday night.

Justin Moore has partnered with Cabela’s to encourage people to put down their phones and enjoy outdoor activities on Disconnect Day on May 1. Fans can download the Justin’s version of the campaign theme song, “What a Wonderful World,” for free that day

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Frankie Ballard Recorded His Next Studio Album in Ten Days on the Texas-Mexico Border

Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleFrankie Ballard headed to the border town of Tornillo, Texas on the Rio Grande River to record his new studio album at a place called the Sonic Ranch. The residential studio complex includes living space, a workout room and swimming pool on more than 2,300 acres, and Frankie and his band stayed there for ten days working on the new music.

He says, “I just thought it’d be a cool place to go and just experience something different.”

The decision to record outside of Nashville freed Frankie and his team from any distractions that would take them out of a creative headspace, including the demands of family and other obligations.

He explains, “I wanted to try to get everybody and go somewhere else where we could kinda hole up and stay focused on nothing but making this album.”

So, what can fans expect from Frankie’s new music? He’s not giving too much away just yet, but Frankie does say, “It’s really different, and I think it was mission accomplished.”

Frankie is following-up his last two #1 hits, “Helluva Life” and “Sunshine & Whiskey,” with the new single, “Young and Crazy.” All of those tracks are included on his 2014 album, Sunshine & Whiskey.

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Miranda Lambert Goes Makeup-Free for “People” Magazine’s World’s Most Beautiful Issue

Image Courtesy Sony Music NashvilleMiranda Lambert poses with no makeup on for People magazine‘s annual World’s Most Beautiful issue. The natural look is close to what Miranda looks like when she’s at home in Oklahoma with husband, Blake Shelton.

She says of her at-home beauty routine, “I just put on some tinted moisturizer and sunscreen and mascara. And lip gloss! It’s kind of an addiction.”  

Miranda only has a glam squad for big events like last Sunday’s ACM Awards. On tour, she does her own hair and makeup as a way to have some alone-time before shows.

“That’s my time to focus and calm down, listen to music and warm up a little bit,” Miranda says. “I have a product bag the size of Texas — just makeup and hair stuff and curling irons.”

Miranda adds that Blake thinks she looks prettier without a lot of makeup on, which causes her some frustration.

Says Miranda, “I think, ‘Stop! Really? This took me three hours!’ But he doesn’t care. He sees me the same, whether I have a whole glam squad or I’m just hanging out at home.”  

Carrie Underwood also opens up about a disastrous perm she got at age 13 in the Beauty Confessions section of People‘s World’s Most Beautiful issue, on stands Friday.

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Billy Currington Releasing Sixth Album, “Summer Forever,” on June 2

Image Courtesy Mercury NashvilleBilly Currington‘s sixth album, Summer Forever, is due out June 2. The project features his latest hit, “Don’t It,” as well as other songs written by Cole Swindell, Florida Georgia Line and several other top songwriters.

“Making this album was such a blast for me,” Billy says. “I put a lot of love into this project and couldn’t be more excited for fans to hear the new music. Summer Forever for me represents a positive, happy, good time lifestyle and that’s what I hope the fans feel when they hear this record.”

Fans can pre-order the new project at

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