Nashville News and Notes for FRIDAY

Loretta Lynn Among Presidential Medal Of Freedom Recipients


Loretta Lynn is getting some very special recognition.  She's among this year's Presidential Medal of Freedom recipients.  The award is the nation's highest civilian honor, and is presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to world peace, or to the security, cultural, or national interest of the nation.  According to a White House press release, Loretta is being recognized for paving the way for women in country music by "courageously breaking barriers in an industry long dominated by men."  A date for the ceremony hasn't been announced yet, but will take place later this year.


Lynn is one of 16 individuals receiving the award.  Other honorees include Oprah Winfrey, baseball great Ernie Banks, former President Bill Clinton, and the late astronaut Sally Ride.


Reba McEntire Proud Of Country Music Hall Of Fame Exhibit


Reba McEntire says it means a great deal to her to be featured in an exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame.  The singer adds that she's also impressed with how the museum has put the exhibit together.


"Reba: All The Women I Am" provides a career retrospective on the singer, highlighting her lengthy, successful, and influential career.  Displays include costumes and other wardrobe items, photographs, videos, and other personal possessions.  Reba herself has contributed many items featured in the exhibit.  "Reba: All The Women I Am" officially opens at Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum today, and runs through June 8th, 2014.


Taylor Swift Among Top Nominees For Sunday's Teen Choice Awards


Taylor Swift leads the way for country music heading into this weekend's Teen Choice awards.  The crossover star is in the running in seven categories, including Choice Female Artist and Choice Female Country Artist.  But she's not the only country star with several chances to win at the event.  Florida Georgia Line is up for four awards, including Choice Country Group and Choice Country song with their chart-topper "Cruise."  In addition, Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Hunter Hayes, and Miranda Lambert are included in multiple categories.  Jason Aldean, Antebellum, The Band Perry, Little Big Town, Carrie Underwood, and Thompson Square could also leave the event a winner.


Voting will remain open at for two more days, closing Saturday night at 11:59 p.m. Pacific time.  "Teen Choice 2013" will air on Fox Sunday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.


Country related nominees for the Teen Choice Awards


Choice Female Artist:

Selena Gomez

Demi Lovato



Taylor Swift


Choice Male Country Artist:

Jason Aldean

Luke Bryan

Eric Church

Hunter Hayes

Blake Shelton


Choice Female Country Artist:

Jana Kramer

Miranda Lambert

Kacey Musgraves

Taylor Swift

Carrie Underwood


Choice Country Group:

Florida Georgia Line

Lady Antebellum

Little Big Town

The Band Perry

Thompson Square


Choice Country Song

“Boys ’Round Here,” Blake Shelton featuring Pistol Annies & Friends

“Crash My Party,” Luke Bryan

“Cruise,” Florida Georgia Line

“I Want Crazy,” Hunter Hayes

“We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” Taylor Swift


Choice Single: Female Artist

“Come & Get It,” Selena Gomez

“Cups (Pitch Perfect’s  ‘When I'm Gone’),” Anna Kendrick

“Heart Attack,” Demi Lovato

“I Knew You Were Trouble,” Taylor Swift

“We Can't Stop,” Miley Cyrus


Choice Break-Up Song

“Come and Get It,” Selena Gomez

“DONE.,” The Band Perry

“Stay,” Rihanna featuring Mikky Ekko

“We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” Taylor Swift

“When I Was Your Man,” Bruno Mars


Choice Summer Song:

"Blurred Lines," Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I.

"Cruise (Remix)," Florida Georgia Line featuring Nelly

"Get Lucky," Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams

"Treasure," Bruno Mars

"We Can't Stop," Miley Cyrus


Choice Summer Music Star: Group:

Daft Punk

Florida Georgia Line

Imagine Dragons

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

Maroon 5


Choice Summer Tour:

Beyonce, "The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour"

Bruno Mars, "The Moonshine Jungle Tour"

Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake, "Legends of the Summer Tour"

One Direction, "Take Me Home Tour"

Taylor Swift, "Red Tour 2013"


Choice Smile:

Selena Gomez

Taylor Lautner

Demi Lovato

Harry Styles

Taylor Swift


Choice TV Show: Drama:

Gossip Girl


Pretty Little Liars


Switched At Birth


Choice TV Actress: Drama:

Troian Bellisario, Pretty Little Liars

Blake Lively, Gossip Girl

Vanessa Marano, Switched At Birth

Hayden Panettiere, Nashville

Emily VanCamp, Revenge


Choice TV: Reality Competition Show:

American Idol

The Bachelor

Dancing with the Stars

The Voice

The X Factor


Choice TV Personality - Male

Nick Cannon, “America's Got Talent”

Simon Cowell, "The X Factor"

Adam Levine, “The Voice”

Ryan Seacrest, "American Idol"

Blake Shelton, “The Voice”


Choice Movie: Romance:

Beautiful Creatures

Les Miserables

Safe Haven

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2

Warm Bodies


Choice Movie Actress: Romance:

Jessica Biel, Playing for Keeps

Alice Englert, Beautiful Creatures

Julianne Hough, Safe Haven

Amanda Seyfried, Les Misérables

Kristen Stewart, The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2


Tim McGraw, Faith Hill Returning To Las Vegas


Tim McGraw and Faith Hill will be returning to the stage together.  The country couple is planning an "encore run" of their "Soul2Soul" show at The Venetian in Las Vegas.  McGraw and Hill kicked off their five-month engagement at the venue last December, and brought their show to a close in April.  But Tim says it was "a total no-brainer" to say yes to more dates.  He explains that he and Faith "made the most" of their "short time in Vegas," but "it seemed like it was over" just as they were "getting good and warmed up."  Faith adds that the Vegas show was "a real treat" for her and Tim as well as their fans, and The Venetian "really rolled out the red carpet and made the whole experience so easy" for them.


McGraw and Hill will resume their "Soul2Soul" shows at The Venetian on October 25th and 26th, giving two performances each night.  They'll play a total of ten weekends over the following six months.  Shows are also set for November 8th, 9th, 15th, and 16th.  Tickets go on sale next week.


Carrie Underwood Pleased With "Blown Away" DVD


Carrie Underwood is happy with how her new "Blown Away" DVD has turned out.  The country star says she believes they did a good job in capturing her performance.


Carrie says she and her crew also shot a lot of behind-the-scenes footage, so viewers will get to see some backstage moments as well.  "The Blown Away Tour: LIVE" will be available Tuesday, and the singer will support the release with some TV appearances.  Carrie will serve as a special guest co-host on ABC's "Good Morning America" on Monday, and visit the syndicate "Live with Kelly and Michael" the day the DVD hits stores.


Civil Wars Headed For Number One Debut On Billboard 200


The Civil Wars' "internal discord" may be keeping the duo from hitting the road, but it looks like it won't keep them from traveling to the top of the Billboard 200.  Industry sources suggest the folk-rockers' self-titled sophomore effort could sell about 100-thousand copies before the tracking week ends this Sunday.  "Billboard" says that should be enough to nab the number one slot when the new tally is revealed next Wednesday.  If the numbers hold up, the feat would give the Civil Wars their best chart showing yet.  Their Grammy-winning debut, "Barton Hollow," debuted at number 12 in 2011 after selling 36-thousand copies.  It eventually climbed to number ten, and has sold a total of 618-thousand copies in the U.S.


The Civil Wars -- a.k.a. Joy Williams and John Paul White -- have been on hiatus since they recorded the new album in September.  They cited "internal discord and irreconcilable differences of ambition."  Williams has since come out and said she'd like to work toward a reconciliation, but White hasn't commented on the situation publicly yet.


Thomas Rhett Finding Direction For New Album


Thomas Rhett says he's honing in on the sound of his next album.  The country newcomer explains that his time on the road is giving him a sense of what the fans really enjoy, and that's what he plans to deliver.


"It Goes Like This" is Rhett's biggest single to date.  It's the third release from his 2012 self-titled debut album, following the lead-off single "Something To Do With My Hands" and the more contemplative song "Beer With Jesus."  "It Goes Like This" is Rhett's first single to reach the top 20 on "Billboard's" Hot Country Songs and Country Airplay charts, and it's still on the rise.


Rhett is also getting to tap some large groups of country music fans for a reaction to his music.  He's opening shows on Jason Aldean's "Night Train" tour this summer.  They'll be performing in Virginia Beach, Virginia Friday night.


Keith Urban Unveils Track List, Other Details On New Album


Keith Urban is sharing a few details on his upcoming album.  He'll be offering "Fuse" as a 13-track standard and 16-track deluxe edition.  Both versions will contain Keith's current single, "Little Bit Of Everything," along with two collaborative tracks.  Keith teams up with Miranda Lambert on the song "We Were Us," while Eric Church is featured on "Raise 'Em Up,"  Bonus titles on the deluxe edition include "Black Leather Jacket," "Gonna Be Good," and "Lucky Charm."  Keith says the songs he chose for the project "just connected" with him, either "for their energy," for "what they were saying" or because they simply made him "feel good."    Urban's "Fuse" will be in stores on September 10th.  It's his long-awaited follow up to his 2010 effort, "Get Closer."


Willie Nelson Performing "Stardust" At Hollywood Bowl Concerts This Weekend


Willie Nelson has a couple special shows coming up this weekend.  The country legend is set to play two concerts at the Hollywood Bowl, where he'll take his audience back to 1978 with complete performances of his "Stardust" album.  The ten-track set features the chart-topping hits "Blue Skies" and "Georgia On My Mind," a cover of the Ray Charles classic that earned Nelson a Grammy.  Willie will also treat the crowds to other hits and fan favorites.  The Hollywood Bowl Orchestra will accompany Nelson for the shows, which mark the first time Willie has presented "Stardust" in its entirety in concert.  The shows, taking place Friday and Saturday night, will also feature opening sets from Lyle Lovett and His Large Band.


Kris Kristofferson, Marty Stuart Remember Cowboy Jack Clement


Kris Kristofferson and Marty Stuart are among those mourning the death of Cowboy Jack Clement.  In his statement to Nashville's "Tennessean," Kris calls Cowboy Jack "one of the funniest, most generous people on the planet."  He says he met the music legend just as he was launching his own career, and credits his move to Nashville to Clement.  He adds that Jack "will always be the embodiment of the Nashville songwriter's love of the song, regardless of who the writer was."


Stuart remembers Clement as "an original at every turn" who "never lost the fun factor, the zaniness."  His relationship with Cowboy Jack dates back more than 30 years.  Marty says he last saw Jack a few weeks ago.  He knew Jack was sick and visited him at his home.  Stuart says they "jammed and sang songs," and Jack "played recordings he'd made down through the years."  He recalls that the day was "all about songs and music and friendship," and adds that he "left there knowing it was a great way to say goodbye."  Cowboy Jack Clement died at his Nashville home Thursday morning following a battle with liver cancer.  The Country Music Hall of Famer was 82.


Elvis Week Begins Saturday


Thousands of Elvis Presley fans will be flocking to Memphis this weekend for the start of Elvis Week 2013, marking the 36th anniversary of his death.  The event officially gets under way Saturday and continues through August 17th.  There'll be a lot to keep fans busy over the course of the eight-day celebration, including conferences, concerts, and fan club meetings, as well as charity events, listening parties, movie screenings, and other Elvis-related activities.  The opening weekend includes a trip Saturday to Tupelo, Mississippi, just over 100 miles Southeast of Memphis, for the Elvis Presley Birthplace Tour, while Sunday's Hound Dog Tour will highlight locations in Memphis that were significant to Elvis.  Elvis' longtime drummer D.J. Fontana; former backing singers Bill Baize, Donnie Sumner, and Millie Kirkham; and country star T.G. Sheppard are among the special guests slated to participate in various events throughout the week.


The Candlelight Vigil, an annual procession along the driveway at Graceland past Elvis' gravesite, will begin at dusk on August 15th -- the eve of the anniversary of the rock icon's death.  The overnight gathering is the crowning point of Elvis Week.  Presley suffered a heart attack while at Graceland, and passed away on August 16th, 1977.  He was 42.


Quick Bites


Kenny Chesney will be getting his day off to an early start.  The country star is set to perform on ABC's "Good Morning America."  He'll take the stage at Rumsey Playfield in New York's Central Park as part of the show's annual Summer Concert Series.


Luke Bryan fans can get their fill of the singer by turning on their TV this weekend.  The "Luke Bryan CMT Takeover Weekend" begins Saturday with "CMT Top 20 Countdown" featuring a guest appearance from Luke.  The premiere of "Luke Bryan: Crash My Party," which gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look as Luke recorded his new album, follows at 2:00 p.m. Eastern.  In addition, Luke Bryan music videos, performance footage, and interview clips will air throughout the weekend, and Luke will be featured on CMT's social media outlets.  Bryan's album "Crash My Party" arrives in stores Tuesday.


It's "Country Music Night" in Chicago.  Kristen Kelly is slated to help the White Sox celebrate the genre, and will play a special concert at U.S. Cellular Field during the White Sox-Minnesota Twins game Friday night.  In addition, the postgame fireworks show will feature a country music soundtrack featuring songs recorded live at the Grand Ole Opry.


Today in Country Music History


Today in 1975, Asleep at the Wheel entered the charts with "The Letter That Johnny Walker Wrote."


Today in 1986, The Judds' "Rockin' With the Rhythm of the Rain" reached number one on the "Billboard" country chart.


Today in 1988, Restless Heart had a top five single with "The Bluest Eyes In Texas."


Today in 1991, Tanya Tucker was shaken but unhurt when her tour bus ended up in the middle of a police chase in Dallas.


Today in 1994, Johnny Cash withdrew from Woodstock '94.


Today in 1996, George Strait's single "Carried Away" hit number one.


Today in 1997, Elvis Week began in Memphis as fans commemorated the 20th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley.


Today in 1997, Lonestar topped the charts with the single "Come Cryin' To Me."


Today in 1998, Trisha Yearwood was number one on the singles charts with "There Goes My Baby."


Today in 2003, Rascal Flatts' Jay DeMarcus got engaged to his then-girlfriend, Allison Alderson, in New York City.  The couple exchanged vows May 15th, 2004.


Today in 2006, Reba McEntire cancelled upcoming concerts at the Las Vegas Hilton.  Her sitcom "Reba" had finally been confirmed to return for one more season, and her concerts conflicted with the taping schedule for the show.


Today in 2006, Kenny Chesney's most ambitious music video to date -- a nine-minute piece to accompany his song "You Save Me" -- had its premiere on CMT.  The four minutes of footage matched to the song itself was preceded by a five-minutes mini movie that set up a dramatic storyline involving drug trafficking.


Today in 2006, Pat Green began a five show stint with the Dave Matthews Band with a performance in Tampa, Florida.


Today in 2009, Taylor Swift and Billy Ray Cyrus were among the winners at the Teen Choice Awards.  Taylor was named Choice Music: Female Artist and her CD "Fearless" got the nod for Choice Music: Album (Female Artist) at the event, while Billy Ray earned recognition as Choice TV: Parental Unit for his portrayal of Robbie Stewart, Miley Stewart/Hannah Montana's dad on "Hannah Montana."


Today in 2009, Rascal Flatts played a special homecoming concert at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.  Dierks Bentley and Darius Rucker also took part in the show.


Today in 2011, new releases included Luke Bryan's "Tailgates & Tanlines."


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