Nashville News and Notes for MONDAY

Toby Keith To Officially Open OK Kids Korral This Month


Toby Keith will soon open the OK Kids Korral.  The country star is slated to take part in the Grand Opening Event for the facility, which will take place at the Oklahoma Health Center Campus in Oklahoma City on November 21st.  The singer has spent the past ten years raising money for the facility through his Toby Keith Foundation.  The OK Kids Korral is a 25-thousand-square foot space for pediatric cancer patients and their families.  It features 16 rooms including a game room, a theater, a family resource room, a reflective room, a laundry room, and 12 overnight suites.  There's also a special wing for children with weakened immune systems, as well as indoor and outdoor play areas.


Toby says he's thrilled to see the OK Kids Korral finally ready to open, and is extending his gratitude to everyone who has contributed over the years to make it a reality.  The singer has been funding the project with money generated through his annual Toby Keith and Friends Golf Classic, which he hosts in the spring.


George Strait Raises Thousands For Wounded Troops


George Strait is showing his support for the troops.  The country star recently hosted his third annual Vaqueros del Mar Invitational Golf Tournament and Auction at his Tapatio Springs Golf Resort in Boerne, Texas.  The event included a roping competition which the singer participated in, and a live auction that raised 425-thousand dollars in just 30 minutes.  Strait also performed at the fundraiser, along with Asleep at the Wheel, Jewel, Jamey Johnson, and others.  The money is going to the Troops First Foundation, which provides support to service members injured while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.  And to show their appreciation for the singer's efforts, a rep from the organization gave Strait and his co-host for the event U.S. flags that were flown in Afghanistan.


Taylor Swift Shut Out At MTV Europe Music Awards


Taylor Swift isn't bringing home any awards from the MTV Europe Music Awards.  The country-pop superstar was a three-time nominee heading into the event.  But she fell to Katy Perry for Best Female and lost the Best Live award to Beyoncé.  Best Pop honors went to the British boy band One Direction.  Rapper Eminem was the big winner at the event, earning the nod for Best Hip Hop and receiving the Global Icon honor.  He was also among the performers at the ceremony along with Perry, Bruno Mars, and Miley Cyrus -- who were winners as well.  The 2013 MTV Europe Music Awards took place at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam on Sunday.


Luke Bryan To Play 2nd NYC Date


Luke Bryan is seeing a big interest in tickets to his upcoming New York City concert.  The country star's January 25th date at Madison Square Garden went on sale Friday, and sold out within five minutes.  In response to the demand, the singer will be making a return trip to the Garden later in the year.  He's added a New York City stop to his summer run of dates, and will return to the famed venue on September 12th.  Tickets go on sale this Saturday, November 16th.  Bryan will launch his "That's My Kind of Night Tour" in Columbus, Ohio on January 16th.  Aside from the Madison Square Garden show, Bryan has only announced dates for the first leg of the trek, which continues through an appearance in Bossier City, Louisiana on March 8th.


Lady Antebellum Releasing "Golden Deluxe" On Monday


Lady Antebellum's "Golden Deluxe" is arriving in stores Monday.  The revamped edition of their May release features six additional tracks including their current single, "Compass."  The country trio has also added two other new songs along with new versions of their hits "Need You Now," "I Run To You," and "Just A Kiss."  And Lady A has some TV appearances coming up in support of the project.  The group will make a release-day stop on NBC's "Today," and perform two songs from the album.  On Thursday Lady A will visit Katie Couric's syndicated talk show, "Katie," and also give a full performance for the "Late Show with David Letterman's" Live On Letterman concert webcast series.  On Friday the group will be a guest on Letterman's CBS show.


Kellie Pickler Mixes Modern, Traditional On New CD


Kellie Pickler admits her new album, "The Woman I Am," sounds a little more modern than her last offering, 2012's "100 Proof."  But the country star tells she "still wanted to keep some of that traditional sound and that element sprinkled throughout this album," and she believes she found "that happy balance."   One song Pickler co-wrote for the album, is "Selma Drye," which the singer says is about her great grandmother -- whom Kellie describes as "your stereotypical hillbilly granny."  She says her husband found the song "Buzzin," which is her favorite on the disc, while the track "I Forgive You" is a song she says she'd been wanting to record for years.  Pickler's last two singles, "Someone Somewhere Tonight" and "Little Bit Gypsy," are also on the album.  "The Woman I Am" arrives in stores Monday.


Rosanne Cash To Release New Album Early Next Year


Rosanne Cash has a new album on the way.  "The River & The Thread" will be her first release since 2009's "The List," a covers disc featuring songs her father -- the late Johnny Cash -- told her were among the best country songs ever.  Rosanne admits that album made the songwriting process a little intimidating for her.


Cash adds that she's also been busy with other projects during these past six years.  The singer explains that she was doing a lot of prose writing, including a series of articles on songwriting for "The New York Times."  The singer says she's been involved in the University of Arkansas' efforts to restore her father's childhood home.  Rosanne's "The River & The Thread" will be in stores on January 14th.


Darius Rucker Calls Kenny Rogers "The Ultimate"


Darius Rucker says Kenny Rogers truly is a crossover star.  Rucker recalls when he was a kid he spent a lot of time listening to the radio, and found Rogers' music all across the dial.


Darius says he grew up thinking Kenny was "the ultimate," because Rogers' songs were played on rock, pop, and country radio stations.  Rucker has been honoring Rogers at various events in recent weeks.  He performed at Kenny's recent Country Music Hall of Fame induction ceremony, and took part in a tribute to Rogers at last week's Country Music Association Awards.


"Duck Dynasty" Star Surprised At Popularity Of Family's Duck Call


"Duck Dynasty's" Willie Robertson says he had no idea how popular their duck call would become.  The reality TV star explains that in considering merchandising behind their A&E series, the duck call never crossed his mind.  But Willie admits his wife, Korie, knew better.


Korie says she suggested they hire some more duck call makers, because she had a feeling it was going to be a hot item in their Duck Commander line.  Willie's father, Phil Robertson, designed the now-famous duck calls, which fans aren't just using on hunting trips but are displaying as decorative objects in their homes.


Country TV Tonight


THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) Kelly Clarkson and Lyle Lovett are guests.


Today In Country Music History


Today in 1993, Dolly Parton launched her new line of cosmetics at her Dollywood theme park in Tennessee's Smoky Mountains.


Today in 1995, Deana Carter married Chris DiCroce.  The couple have since gone their separate ways.


Today in 1996, Deana Carter's single "Strawberry Wine" went to number one, and the video also hit number one on CMT.  She also did her first cover shoot for a national magazine.


Today in 1998, "The Hits" album by Garth Brooks was certified for multi-Platinum sales of ten-million.


Today in 2001, Billy Ray Cyrus performed the national anthem and "Some Gave All" in front of 25-thousand Harley enthusiasts at the "Love Ride" charity event with Jay Leno in Los Angeles.


Today in 2002, Dixie Chick Emily Robison and her husband, Charlie Robison, welcomed their first child at 10:06 p.m. in San Antonio.  Charles Augustus Robison made his debut at a hearty eight-pounds, 13-ounces and measured 21-inches long.


Today in 2004, Darryl Worley, Mark Wills, and Rebecca Lynn Howard were among the performers at the Veteran's Day American Freedom Festival concert at the University of Florida's Sundome in Tampa.


Today in 2004, John Conlee was the co-Grand Marshall of Nashville's Veterans Day Parade, along with Marine Brigadier General Mary Anne Krusa-Dossin.


Today in 2004, Vince Gill and Billy Ray Cyrus performed at a benefit in Nashville for Walden's Puddle Rehabilitation Center, which cares for orphaned and injured wild animals.  Colin Raye, Rodney Crowell, and Dobie Gray also took part in the event.


Today in 2004, Clay Walker took part in the National MS Society's Leadership Conference in Denver, Colorado.  In addition, the society announced Clay's appointment as Honorary Ambassador for its 2005 MS Cycling Series, in which the singer and his band members participated in select MS150 bike tours across the country to help raise money and awareness of multiple sclerosis.


Today in 2007, Trent Willmon was on CMT's "Southern Fried Flicks with Hazel Smith," where they cooked together while presenting the Clint Eastwood/Meryl Streep film "The Bridges of Madison County."


Today in 2008, Taylor Swift's "Teardrops On My Guitar" was named Song of the Year at the 56th annual BMI Country Awards in Nashville.  Hank Williams Jr. received the BMI Icon Award, while Keith Urban and Carrie Underwood earned special recognition since they both had two songs among the list of the top 50 most performed songs of the year.


Today in 2008, John Rich performed at the special Veterans Day rededication ceremony for the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York.


Today in 2008, new releases included Taylor Swift's CD "Fearless," Keith Urban's live DVD "Love, Pain and the whole crazy World Tour," the concert DVD "Preachin', Prayin', Singin with Charlie Daniels and Friends: Live from Nashville," Kevin Costner & Modern West's CD "Untold Truth," and the DVD of Toby Keith's feature film "Beer For My Horses."


Today in 2009, Taylor Swift was the big winner at the 43rd annual CMA Awards.  The 19-year-old became the youngest performer ever to earn the event's top prize of Entertainer of the Year.  She also captured Female Vocalist of the Year, Album of the Year, and Video of the Year honors.  Brad Paisley and Lady Antebellum each took two categories, while Sugarland and Darius Rucker were also recognized.


Today in 2009, the first issue of the "Luke McBain" series arrived in stores.  The comic book's title character was based on the physical image and philosophical outlook of Trace Adkins.


Today in 2009, Carrie Underwood's album "Play On" debuted at number one on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart.


Today in 2010, Montgomery Gentry's Troy Gentry expressed his regrets over killing Cubby the bear.  In a handwritten statement posted on the duo's website the singer admitted what he did was wrong.  He added that while he accepting the legal consequences that stemmed from his illegal 2004 bear hunt and at the time apologized for committing the crime, but acknowledged that he, quote, "failed to apologize to the public for the unethical way the bear was taken."


Today in 2010, country stars came together at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena to tape the TV special "CMA Country Christmas."  Numerous artists took part in the event, including Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, Martina McBride, and Darius Rucker.  Sugarland also performed, while Jennifer Nettles served as the host.


Today in 2011, George Strait held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open his new Tapatio Springs Golf Resort in Texas.


Today in 2011, Tim McGraw played a special Veteran's Day concert at Camp Pendleton.


Today in 2012, Taylor Swift was a three-time winner at the MTV Europe Music Awards, getting nods for Best Female, Best Live, and Best Look at the event.  She also performed during the ceremony, which took place in Frankfurt, Germany.


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