Nashville News and Notes for MONDAY

Randy Travis Suing To Prevent Release Of Drunk Driving Arrest, Video


Randy Travis wants to make sure the evidence in his drunk driving arrest last August is never made public.  The "Austin-American Statesman" says the country star has filed a 100-thousand-dollar lawsuit against the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Office of the Attorney General after learning that they were planning to release some of the material after receiving a request earlier this month under the public information act.  Travis resolved the matter after striking a deal with prosecutors back in January, pleading guilty to a charge of DWI and receiving two years' probation.  The judge also ordered the dash-cam video of the arrest be destroyed, and said the transcript from the arrest could not be made public.


Travis was arrested for DWI last August in Grayson County, Texas.  Troopers picked up the drunk and naked singer after he crashed his car into a construction barricade.  Randy wasn't cooperative, and allegedly threatened officers during his arrest.


Taylor Swift Wins Big At Billboard Music Awards


Taylor Swift is a big winner from the 2013 Billboard Music Awards.  The country-pop superstar, who was one of the top nominees heading into the ABC event, received eight nods including Artist of the Year.  In accepting the night's top prize, Taylor took a jab at her high profile love live in thanking her followers.


Swift was also named Top Female, Billboard 200, Digital Songs, and Country Artist, while her album "Red" and his single "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" also took awards.  Taylor performed at the event as well, debuting the single "22."  She even attracted attention even before she entered the venue, with the very short, form-fitting blue dress she wore on the red carpet.


Taylor was the only country star to win an award, but she wasn't the only one taking part in the event.  Shania Twain presented the night's first award, for Top Rap Artist, which went to Nicki Minaj.  In addition, Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles introduced The Band Perry, who performed "Better Dig Two."  The 2013 Billboard Music Awards were presented in a ceremony at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas Sunday night.


Trace Adkins Named "All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" Winner


Trace Adkins is coming out on top this time.  After finishing in the runner-up spot the first time he competed on NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice," he got the nod on the all-star edition of the series Sunday night.  Just prior to the announcement, the country star expressed a great deal of confidence in his performance on the show's final task.


Adkins was up against Penn Jillette.  They were each tasked with creating a new ice cream flavor for Walgreens, as well as creating packaging and a promotional video.  They also had to raise money by hosting an event for the product.  Adkins performed at his gala for his Maple Macadamia Mash-Up, which also featured Gary Busey slipping on his Buddy Holly glasses to sing "Not Fade Away."  And while he actually raised 664-thousand-dollars he was only credited with 554-thousand, because a 100-thousand-dollar contribution from NFL star Tim Tebow came in late.  For the win Akins received a total of 350-thousand-dollars for the American Red Cross.  In addition to the show's 250-thousand-dollar grand prize, Walgreens added another 100-thousand-dollars to the donation.


Trace Adkins Explains His Different "Celebrity Apprentice" Charities


Trace Adkins has played for two different charities on "Celebrity Apprentice."  The first time he competed he raised money for the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network, and this time he supported the American Red Cross.  The country star says his wife played a role in selecting both organizations.


Adkins finished the runner up to Piers Morgan when he first took part in the NBC reality series back in 2008.  He made it to the final again on "All-Star Celebrity Apprentice," and this time he won.


Kellie Pickler Competing In The "Dancing With The Stars" Finale


Kellie Pickler is going for all the marbles -- or at least a mirrorball trophy.  The country star is among the last remaining celebrities as "Dancing With the Stars" heads into the finale.  Kellie is up against Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Jacoby Jones, teen Disney Channel star Zendaya Coleman, and Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman as the ABC reality show wraps up one more season.  The two-night finale begins tonight with the four finalists giving their last performances.  With their professional dancing partners, each celeb will compete in three rounds of dance in tonight's two-hour performance episode, starting at 8:00 pm Eastern.  The winner will be revealed Tuesday night in "Dancing's" two-hour season finale.


Wynonna will also be on hand Tuesday as the winner is named -- and not just because she was one of this season's contenders.  She's slated to perform, along with Pitbull, Psy, and Jessica Sanchez.


Tim McGraw Praises Keith Urban As "Idol" Judge


There's at least one person who wouldn't mind seeing Keith Urban return as an "American Idol" judge.  Tim McGraw tells "The Hollywood Reporter" he thinks his fellow country star is "just one of the greatest, coolest guys in the business."  He adds that the feels Urban been great on the show -- and makes a much better judge than he would.  Tim says Keith is "way more diplomatic" than he is, and is also "a nice guy."


If it's up to Urban, he'll be back in 2014.  Keith tells "People" he's loved being an "American Idol" judge, explaining that he "literally" has enjoyed going to work every day on the show.  He explains that he likes "being in a team," and he "felt that immediately" -- particularly with departing judge Randy Jackson and host Ryan Seacrest.  Rumors have circulated that none of this season's judges would be returning next year, but no formal announcement has been made yet.


Ray Price Improving, Will Undergo "Routine" Cancer Tests This Week


Ray Price continues to get better.  His wife Janie says in a Facebook post that the doctors have "resolved the dehydration problem," and the country legend is listed in good condition.  She explains that Ray will spend this week "getting all of the routine tests run for the follow up on his pancreatic cancer status," and his doctors are "very optimistic as to the outcome."  Janie adds that Ray is looking forward to his return to the stage. says Price has a couple of shows coming up in Missouri next month.  He's scheduled to appear at Knuckleheads in Kansas City on June 7th, and perform at the Americana Theater in Branson on June 8th.


On May 9th Price was hospitalized with severe dehydration, which was reportedly caused by medication for post-radiation syndrome.  The 87-year-old Country Music Hall of Famer revealed last year that he was battling pancreatic cancer, and said earlier this year that he was in remission.


Carrie Underwood Enjoys Creativity Involved In Putting Together Shows


Carrie Underwood says she enjoys taking her music to the stage.  The country star explains that she has fun developing her shows and coming up with ways to surprise her audience.


Fans will get the chance to see some of the creative thought that went into her most recent trek.  The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville will host "Carrie Underwood: The Blown Away Tour," featuring displays showcasing Carrie's stage costumes, accessories, and pieces from the set.  The exhibit will be open from June 5th through November 10th.  Underwood will be bringing her "Blown Away" tour to a close this week.  She has three more stops in Canada, including an appearance in Dawson Creek, British Columbia tonight.


Chris Young's Grandparents Helping Make New Album A Hit


Chris Young says his grandparents are doing their part to make sure the country singer's next album is a hit.  They've given producer James Stroud a pie.  Chris tells "American Songwriter" that his grandmother baked James a pie when they worked on his previous studio effort, "Neon," which went to number two on the chart.  He says now "she thinks if she skipped an album where she didn't bring him a pie at some point," it might create "bad juju on the record."  Young and Stroud are doing their parts as well, finding, writing, and recording the material they think will work best for the disc.  Chris' latest single, "Aw Naw," is the lead-off release from the upcoming album.


Thomas Rhett Struggling To Train His Puppy


Thomas Rhett is experiencing a challenge on the home front.  The country newcomer says he and his wife, Lauren, have added a four-legged friend to their family, which hasn't been easy on them.


Thomas says consistency is one of the keys to dog training, and it's something they've struggled with.  He explains that he's away on the road much of the time, and Lauren just isn't a very good disciplinarian.  But Rhett adds that they don't plan to have a poorly behaved dog forever.  He says they'll be taking Kona to an obedience course, which they're hoping will make a difference.


Quick Bites


Keith Urban will soon be reunited with one of the "American Idol" finalists.  Runner-up Kree Harrison is slated to make her Grand Ole Opry debut on June 4th.  Urban is also part of the night's lineup.


The Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame now has a physical location.  Bill Anderson, Bobby Braddock, and Sonny Curtis were among the stars who performed at Sunday's grand opening event for the facility, which is located at the Music City Center in Nashville.


Today In Country Music History


Today in 1957, Marty Robbins "A White Sport Coat (And a Pink Carnation)" debuted on the country charts.


Today in 1958, singer-songwriter Don Gibson joined the Grand Ole Opry.


Today in 1980, Alabama released "My Home's in Alabama," which became their first charted disc.


Today in 1989, Alabama scored a number one hit with the single "If I Had You."


Today in 1994, "The Video Collection" by Billy Ray Cyrus was certified Platinum.


Today in 1994, Toby Keith's "Wish I Didn't Know Now" topped the charts.


Today in 1997, Sara Evans' debut album "Three Chords and the Truth," was released.


Today in 1999, Tammy Wynette's death was officially ruled as natural causes.


Today in 2000, Jennifer Kinley became a missus when she married Adam Hughes in an outdoor ceremony in Leipers Fork, Tennessee, just outside of Nashville.


Today in 2000, Tracy Lawrence made an appearance on the season finale of CBS TV's "Walker, Texas Ranger."


Today in 2002, Kix Brooks returned to his alma mater of Louisiana Tech to receive the school's highest honor, the Tower Medallion.


Today in 2003, Jeff Bates' "Rainbow Man," Jo Dee Messina's "Greatest Hits," the Oak Ridge Boys' "Colors," and Kenny Rogers' "Back To The Well" were among the new albums arriving in stores.

Today in 2004, Trace Adkins premiered his "Rough and Ready" video on CMT.


Today in 2005, Charlie Daniels performed the national anthem at Shea Stadium in New York City for the New York Mets-New York Yankees game.


Today in 2005, Diamond Rio performed the national anthem at Lowe's Motor Speedway Concord, North Carolina, kicking off the Quaker Steak & Lube 200 NASCAR truck race.


Today in 2007, Toby Keith performed for American troops at Forward Operating Base Fenty in Afghanistan, during his fifth USO tour to the Middle East.


Today in 2007, Neal McCoy and Clay Walker performed on ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition."


Today in 2008, new releases included Julianne Hough's self-titled debut album.


Today in 2009, Carrie Underwood led the "Forbes" list of  the top earning stars to come to fame through "American Idol," with an average annual income of 14-million-dollars.  By comparison, Jennifer Hudson took second place with earnings of five-million-dollars.


Today in 2009, Keith Urban was among the guest performers on the "American Idol" season finale, in which Kris Allen earned the title.


Today in 2009, authorities determined that George Strait's brother, John "Buddy" Strait, died from heart disease aggravated by methadone toxicity, and ruled his death accidental.  Buddy Strait had been found dead in a San Antonio, Texas hotel room six weeks earlier.


Today in 2012, Taylor Swift was honored as the "Billboard" Woman of the Year at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards, while Lady Antebellum and Jason Aldean were also among the winners.


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