Nashville News and Notes for FRIDAY

ACM Awards Taking Place This Weekend


"Bluke" is back.  Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan are teaming up again to host the 49th annual Academy of Country Music Awards.  Miranda Lambert and Tim McGraw lead the list of nominees with seven bids each, while Keith Urban, Taylor Swift, and Kacey Musgraves are a few of the others with multiple chances to win.  Shelton is up for awards as well, while Bryan could earn his second consecutive Entertainer of the Year honor.  The star-studded ceremony will also be packed with performances.  Brad Paisley is slated to debut his new single, while Lambert will join George Strait in a tribute to Merle Haggard.  Other special collaborations include Lady Antebellum with Fleetwood Mac's Stevie Nicks and Dierks Bentley with Sheryl Crow.  The Band Perry has been tapped to launch the show.


The 49th annual ACM Awards will be presented at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, airing on CBS at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.  Meanwhile, Florida Georgia Line will headine the ACM Fan Jam, taking place at the Mandalay Bay Events Center concurrent with the awards show.  Portions of the remote concert event will be featured in the TV broadcast, including performances by Florida Georgia Line with Luke Bryan and New Artist nominees Kip Moore, Justin Moore, and Brett Eldredge.


Select nominees for the 49th ACM Awards follow


Entertainer of the Year


Luke Bryan

Miranda Lambert

Blake Shelton

George Strait

Taylor Swift


Male Vocalist of the Year


Jason Aldean

Lee Brice

Luke Bryan

Blake Shelton

Keith Urban


Female Vocalist of the Year


Sheryl Crow

Miranda Lambert

Kacey Musgraves

Taylor Swift

Carrie Underwood


Vocal Duo of the Year


Big & Rich

Dan + Shay

Florida Georgia Line

Love and Theft

Thompson Square


Vocal Group of the Year


Eli Young Band

Lady Antebellum

Little Big Town

The Band Perry

Zac Brown Band


New Artist of the Year


Brett Eldredge

Justin Moore

Kip Moore


Album of the Year


Blake Shelton, "Based on a True Story..."

Luke Bryan, "Crash My Party"

Florida Georgia Line, "Here's to the Good Times"

Kacey Musgraves, "Same Trailer Different Park"

Tim McGraw, "Two Lanes of Freedom"


Single Record of the Year


Florida Georgia Line, "Cruise"

Tim McGraw featuring Taylor Swift and Keith Urban, "Highway Don't Care"

Lee Brice, "I Drive Your Truck"

Miranda Lambert, "Mama's Broken Heart"

Darius Rucker featuring Lady Antebellum, "Wagon Wheel"


Song of the Year


Gary Allan, "Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)"

Songwriters: Gary Allan, Hillary Lindsey, Matthew Warren


Lee Brice, "I Drive Your Truck"

Songwriters: Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington, Jimmy Yeary


Miranda Lambert, "Mama's Broken Heart"

Songwriters: Brandy Clark, Shane McAnally, Kacey Musgraves


Blake Shelton, "Mine Would Be You"

Songwriters: Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington, Deric Ruttan


Darius Rucker featuring Lady Antebellum, "Wagon Wheel"

Songwriters: Bob Dylan, Ketch Secor


Video of the Year


The Band Perry, "Better Dig Two"

Kacey Musgraves, "Blowin' Smoke"

Tim McGraw featuring Taylor Swift and Keith Urban, "Highway Don't Care"

Lee Brice, "I Drive Your Truck"

Miranda Lambert, "Mama's Broken Heart"

Carrie Underwood, "Two Black Cadillacs"


Vocal Event of the Year


Blake Shelton featuring Pistol Annies and Friends, "Boys 'Round Here"

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

Tim McGraw featuring Taylor Swift and Keith Urban, "Highway Don't Care"

Darius Rucker featuring Lady Antebellum, "Wagon Wheel"

Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert, "We Were Us"


Merle Haggard Honored To Receive ACM's Crystal Milestone Award


Merle Haggard says he's honored to receive the Academy of Country Music's Crystal Milestone Award.  The presentation will be part of this weekend's ACM Awards ceremony.  Merle admits he's still working on his acceptance speech.


The ACM award recognizes Haggard for his lengthy and influential career.  The country legend says he's simply tried his best to tell the truth with his songs, which isn't always easy.  He explains that he's always written about himself, since that's "the only thing" he knows "anything about."  But Merle admits "it's hard to be honest about yourself."


Garth Brooks has been tapped to give Haggard the award, while Miranda Lambert and George Strait will perform a tribute to him.  The 49th annual ACM Awards will take place in Las Vegas, and air on CBS Sunday night.


Concerts, Charity Events Among ACM Weekend Festivities


The Academy of Country Music Awards won't be the only country-related event happening in Las Vegas this weekend.  The stars are coming into town a few days early to entertain fans and raise money for charity.  The two-day ACM Party for a Cause Festival gets under way Friday.  Rascal Flatts is headlining the first night, supporting Outnumber Hunger, while Keith Urban leads the lineup for Saturday's show, benefiting several military-related organizations.  Meanwhile, Jake Owen and Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley are some of the stars slated to participate in the ACM Lifting Lives Celebrity Golf Classic.  Darius Rucker is hosting that charity event, taking place at TPC Las Vegas on Saturday.


In addition, Luke Bryan and Justin Moore have tapped their country music friends to join them in the Great Outdoor Archery Event at The LINQ in Las Vegas.  Florida Georgia Line and Lee Brice are among the members of Team Luke, while Brantley Gilbert and Thomas Rhett are among those siding with Team Justin.  And fans don't need to be in Vegas to check out the action.  The competition will be streamed live at Saturday at 12:30 p.m. Eastern, 9:30 a.m. Pacific.


Jason Aldean Kicking Off March Madness Music Festival


Jason Aldean is the opening night headliner for this weekend's March Madness Music Festival.  The three-day event is taking place at Reunion Park in Dallas, Texas in conjunction with the NCAA men's basketball championship series.  Aldean will follow the Eli Young Band's 90-minute set Friday night.  Both performances will be streamed live at starting at 7:30 p.m. Eastern.  Tim McGraw and Pat Green will perform during the weekend as well.  McGraw will take the stage Saturday afternoon, while Green is part of Sunday's lineup.  Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and The Killers are the event's other headliners.


Rucker, Daughtry To Sing Anthem At NCAA Final Four Games


Darius Rucker and Chris Daughtry will be taking part in the Final Four festivities.  The singers have been tapped to perform the national anthem at the upcoming games, taking place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.  Rucker will do the honors on Monday for the NCAA Men's National Championship game.  He'll be backed by the Jazz Singers, a local high school vocal ensemble.  Daughtry will sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" before the semifinal games on Saturday, with support from the Fort McHenry Fife and Drum Corps.  Saturday's games will be broadcast live on TBS starting at 6:00 p.m. Eastern.  Monday's game will air on CBS at 9:00 p.m. Eastern.


Tim McGraw To Release New Album In September


Tim McGraw's next album will be in stores on September 16th.  "Sundown Heaven Town" will feature the country star's latest single, "Lookin' For That Girl."  And Tim intends to give fans more of a preview as the release date approaches.  He explains that it's "a world driven by immediate gratification," so he wants to "be able to play a song live somewhere and then have it available for download right then."  The singer adds that "you just never know where new music might pop up over the next few months."  McGraw will launch his "Sundown Heaven Town 2014 Tour" in Fresno, California on May 8th.


Florida Georgia Line Reflects On Current Single


Florida Georgia Line's Tyler Hubbard says he and Brian Kelley are really enjoying their latest single.  The country star explains that "This Is How We Roll" is sort of a motto they currently follow.


In addition to singing "This Is How We Roll" at their shows, Florida Georgia Line will team up with Luke Bryan to perform the song at this weekend's Academy of Country Music Awards.  The duo is hosting the ACM Fan Jam during the awards event, and Bryan is slated to join them for the song during the televised ceremony.  The 49th annual ACM Awards will take place in Las Vegas on Sunday, and air on CBS.


Cassadee Pope Connects With Second Single


Cassadee Pope says she was instantly drawn to her second single.  The country singer tells when she first heard "I Wish I Could Break Your Heart" a wave of "weird emotions" swept over her, and she "loved it right away."  She explains that she "knew what that felt like," and had "felt that before in past relationships."  Cassadee adds that while a man sang the demo, she never thought the song was specifically "from a guy's perspective."  "I Wish I Could Break Your Heart" is Pope's follow up to her top ten hit, "Wasting All These Tears."  Both songs are on her debut album, "Frame By Frame."


Kacey Musgraves Pleased With Her Place In Country Music


Kacey Musgraves says she's proud to be among today's country women.  The singer-songwriter explains that her goal is to continue the tradition started by those who came before her.


Kacey is also getting recognition for her work.  She's in the running in four categories at this weekend's Academy of Country Music Awards.  Her bids include Female Vocalist and Album of the Year for her Grammy-winning disc "Same Trailer Different Park."  The 49th annual ACM Awards will take place in Las Vegas, and air on CBS Sunday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.


Country TV Tonight


ACM VIDEO PREMIERE (GAC) A preview of this weekend's 49th annual Academy of Country Music Awards.

ACM NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR: 2014 (GAC) An in-depth look at the three Academy of Country Music New Artist of the Year nominees, Kip Moore, Justin Moore, and Brett Eldredge.

TOP 20 COUNTRY COUNTDOWN (GAC) New videos from Chris Young and Miranda Lambert are featured, along with a preview of the 49th annual Academy of Country Music Awards and the week's most popular country music videos.




Country Birthdays Include


The Gatlin Brothers' Steve Gatlin is 63.

Clay Davidson 43.


Today in Country Music History


Today in 1985, the album "Why Not Me" by the Judds was certified Gold.


Today in 1987, George Strait scored his 10th number one hit with "Ocean Front Property."


Today in 1989, Alabama's "Southern Star" album was certified Gold.


Today in 1989, the Judds' album "Rivers Of Time" was released.


Today in 1992, Billy Ray Cyrus' debut single, "Achy Breaky Heart," made its first appearance on the charts.


Today in 1996, the Mavericks' album "Music For All Occasions" went Gold.


Today in 2000, the home video and DVD versions of the animated TNN movie "Tom Sawyer" were released with the soundtrack.  The film featured celebrity voices including Lee Ann Womack, Mark Wills, Waylon Jennings, and Hank Williams Jr.


Today in 2000, SHeDAISY made their television debut on "Live! with Regis & Kathie Lee" singing "This Woman Needs," while Jessica Andrews appeared on "Donny & Marie" and performed "Unbreakable Heart."


Today in 2000, the Wilkinsons' album "Here and Now" and BR5-49's "Coast To Coast" album arrived in stores.


Today in 2000, the Dixie Chicks' single "Goodbye Earl" was certified Gold.  On the same day, their debut album, "Wide Open Spaces," was certified for sales of nine-million.


Today in 2002, Jo Dee Messina celebrated the number one success of her single "Bring On The Rain" during a party on Nashville's Music Row for songwriters Billy Montana and Helen Darling.


Today in 2003, Jessica Andrews made a guest appearance on the WB series "Greetings from Tucson."


Today in 2006, Hank Williams Jr. turned himself in to Memphis, Tennessee authorities in connection with an assault charge brought against him by a waitress who claimed he attacked her.


Today in 2006, new releases included Rascal Flatts' "Me and My Gang" and John Corbett's self-titled debut disc.


Today in 2006, Gretchen Wilson's "Undressed" long form video was certified Gold and Platinum.


Today in 2010, Terri Clark lost her mom to cancer.  Linda Clark had been battling the disease for more than two years.


Today in 2010, Jake Owen performed at the Big Dance Concert in Indianapolis, Indiana, which was one of events surrounding the NCAA Men's Final Four college basketball championship.


Today in 2011, Pistol Annies, featuring Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe, and Angaleena Presley, made their debut at the Academy of Country Music's special concert event "Girls' Night Out: Superstar Women Of Country" in Las Vegas.


Today in 2012, Lionel Richie's country collaborations disc, "Tuskegee," debuted at number one on the Country Albums chart.  With the accomplishment Richie joined Ray Charles as the only artists to top both the country and R&B charts.


Copyright © 2014

Metro Networks Inc.