Nashville News and Notes for THURSDAY

Autopsy Confirms Mindy McCready Death As Suicide


Preliminary autopsy results confirm country singer Mindy McCready died from a single gunshot wound to the head last Sunday.  According to E! News, the results made public Wednesday suggest suicide, although Cleburne County authorities say McCready did not leave a suicide note.  Sheriff Marty Moss tells the website this is still an "ongoing investigation."  He would not comment on whether McCready's boyfriend, David Wilson, left a note before he was found dead at the couple's home in Heber Springs, Arkansas on January 13th.  Wilson's death was initially reported to be a suicide but authorities say it is also still under investigation.


McCready death came one month after Wilson's passing.  Shortly before she died, the singer contributed a song to a suicide prevention video that was to be used as a Public Service Announcement.  The video features Mindy's song "I'll See You Yesterday" and includes photos of McCready and Wilson, followed by contact information for


Custody Hearing For Mindy McCready's Sons Scheduled For April


The late Mindy McCready's children will apparently remain in foster care for several more weeks. says a hearing has been set for April 5th to address custody of the boys.  Arkansas authorities had taken six-year-old Zander and ten-month-old Zayne from the country singer earlier this month, after she was ordered into a treatment program for mental health and substance abuse issues.  McCready only spent a couple of days at the facility, but her sons still hadn't been returned to her last weekend, when she took her own life.


"People" describes Zander and Zayne's situation as "custodial limbo."  Zander's father, Billy McKnight has been seeking custody of his son since he was removed from McCready's care ten days before she died.  Meanwhile, Mindy's mother Gayle Inge and her husband Michael, who live in Florida, want to take in their grandsons.  And they seem to have the authorities on their side.  A Department of Human Services order sent to the judge supports granting custody to the Inges.  Over the years Gayle has been Zander's legal guarding during Mindy's other stints in rehab.  He also lived with her when Mindy served time in jail for probation violations stemming from a drug arrest.  Zayne's father was Mindy's boyfriend David Wilson, whose shooting death last month is still under investigation.


Taylor Swift Falls Short At Brit Awards


Taylor Swift might have a new Grammy this year, but not Brit Award.  The country-pop singer-songwriter was among the nominees at the event, which is the UK equivalent of the Grammys.  She was in the running for International Female Solo Artist, but the prize went to pop singer Lana Del Ray.  Other hopefuls in the category included Rihanna, Alicia Keys, and Cat Power.  But Taylor still sang at the event. says Swift delivered a high-energy dance performance of her hit "I Knew You Were Trouble."  The event's big winners included Ben Howard and Emeli Sandé, while Mumford And Sons took the British Group prize.  The 2013 Brit Awards were presented in a ceremony in London on Wednesday.


Earlier this month Taylor won her seventh career Grammy Award.  She got the nod for Best Song Written for Visual Media for "Safe & Sound," her collaboration with The Civil Wars and T Bone Burnett for the movie "The Hunger Games."


Jason Aldean Launching "Night Train" Tour


Jason Aldean is returning to the road.  The country star is set to kick off his "Night Train" tour with a show in Bossier City, Louisiana Thursday night.  Jake Owen and Thomas Rhett are the openers.  The extensive trek continues into October, and includes a handful of stadium shows.  Aldean will perform at Sanford Stadium at the University of Georgia in Athens on April 13th, Fenway Park in Boston on July 13th, and Wrigley Field in Chicago on July 20th.  Jason will make his debut at New York's Madison Square Garden before a packed house on March 2nd.  Tickets for the show sold out in less than ten minutes.  Aldean's trek also includes a stop at RodeoHouston next month, along with a number of summer festival dates.  Jason is touring behind his most recent release, "Night Train," which features the chart-topping hits "Take A Little Ride" and "The Only Way I Know."


Jason Aldean Tour Dates


February 21 - Bossier City, Louisiana, at the CenturyLink Center

February 22 - Lafayette, Louisiana, at the Cajundome

February 23 - Biloxi, Mississippi, at the MS Coast Coliseum

February 26 - New York, New York, at the Best Buy Theater

February 28 & March 1 - Uncasville, Connecticut, at the Mohegan Sun

March 2 - New York, New York, at Madison Square Garden

March 11 - Houston, Texas, at Reliant Stadium at RodeoHouston

March 21 - Madison, Wisconsin, at the Alliant Energy Center Memorial Coliseum

March 22 - Duluth, Minnesota, at the AMSOIL Arena

March 23 - Grand Forks, North Dakota, at the Alreus Center

April 13 - Athens, Georgia, at Sanford Stadium

April 18 - Charleston, West Virginia, at the Charleston Civic Center Coliseum

April 20 - Knoxville, Tennessee, at Thompson Boling Arena

April 25 - Evansville, Indiana, at the Ford Center

April 27 - Omaha, Nebraska, at the CenturyLink Center

May 5 - Austin, Texas, at the Tower Amphitheater

May 16 - Greenville, South Carolina, at the Bi Lo Center

May 17 - North Charleston, South Carolina, at the North Charleston Coliseum

May 18 - Greenboro, North Carolina, at the Greenboro Coliseum

June 28 - Manhattan, Kansas, at Country Stampede

June 29 - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, at Summerfest

June 30 - Cadott, Wisconsin, at Country Fest

July 11 - Fort Loramie, Ohio, at the Country Concert

July 12 & 13 - Boston, Massachusetts, at Fenway Park

July 20 - Chicago, Illinois, at Wrigley Field

July 26 - Cheyenne, Wyoming, at the Cheyenne Frontier Days

July 27 - Sandy, Utah, at the Rio Tinto Stadium

August 2 - Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, at the Boots and Hearts Festival

August 9 - Virginia Beach, Virginia, at the Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach

August 11 - Saratoga, New York at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center

August 15 - Cincinnati, Ohio, at the Riverbend Music Center

August 16 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, at the First Niagara Pavilion

August 17 - Darien Lake, New York, at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center

August 23 - Cleveland, Ohio, at the Blossom Music Center

August 24  Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at the Susquehanna Bank Center Show

September 6 - Tampa, Florida, at the Live Nation Amphitheater

September 7 - West Palm Beach, Florida, at the Cruzan Amphitheater

September 12 - Charlotte, North Carolina, at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater Charlotte

September 13 - Raleigh, North Carolina, at the Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion at Walnut Creek

September 14 - Washington, DC, at Jiffy Lube Live

September 20 - St. Louis, Missouri, at the Verizon Wireless Amphitheater - St. Louis

September 21 - Indianapolis, Indiana, at the Klipsch Music Center

October 11 - Sacramento,California, at the Sleep Train Arena

October 12 - Mountain View, California, at the Shoreline Amphitheater

October 17 - Phoenix, Arizona, at the Desert Sky Pavilion

October 18 - San Diego, California, at the Sleep Train Amphitheater

October 26 - Dallas, Texas, at the Gexa Energy Pavilion


Jake Owen Excited To Join Jason Aldean Tour Tonight


Jake Owen is set to hit the road with Jason Aldean, and he says he'd be hard pressed to find a bigger gig right now.


Aldean's "Night Train" outing gets under way tonight with a show in Bossier City, Louisiana.  Owen says he's "super excited" about being a supporting act on the trek, which will also feature Thomas Rhett.  But the tour isn't the only thing Jake has to celebrate this week.  During rehearsals in Nashville Tuesday, he found out that his single "The One That Got Away" had been certified Gold by the RIAA.  It's the first song Owen co-wrote that has sold more than 500-thousand copies.


Chris Young's First Overseas Tour Has Rough Start


Chris Young is overseas.  The American country star is playing his first-ever shows in the UK and Ireland this week on a special CMA Songwriters Series tour.  But his journey didn't get off to a smooth start.  He traveled across the Atlantic Wednesday via American Airlines and British Airways, which apparently lost his luggage.  He informed the airliners of his predicament via Twitter, and included the hashtag #socoldandalone.  American took up the conversation, tweeting back, "Oh no, we're sorry you're cold and alone, Chris. The arriving airline is responsible for delivering bags," and directing him to fill out a "lost bag report with British Airways."


But even if Chris has trouble retrieving his instruments, he won't have to sing a cappella.  Sugarland's Kristian Bush, who's also part of the trek, jumped into the Twitter conversation with an offer to lend Chris a guitar "if they don't come through."  The CMA Songwriters Series tour begins Thursday with a show in Dublin.  They'll also play two shows in Belfast, Northern Ireland before bringing the trek to a close in London on February 25th.


Lee Brice Admits Current Single Sometimes Tough To Perform


Lee Brice says he has to be careful when he's performing his current hit, "I Drive Your Truck."  The country star admits that it's easy for him to get wrapped up in the song's emotional message, which makes it difficult to sing.


"I Drive Your Truck" is about a man coping with the death of his brother who was killed in combat.  But Brice says that for him the song sparks memories of his grandfather and of his brother Lewis, who's still alive.  Lewis is also featured in the song's video.  Lee's next performance challenge is coming up Thursday night, when he opens the show for Miranda Lambert and Dierks Bentley in Ames, Iowa.


Kip Moore Still Learning, But Eager To Become Headliner


Kip Moore has a lot of respect for Eric Church.


Kip was an opener on Church's "Blood, Sweat & Beers Tour" last fall, which he says was a real learning experience.  Kip admits he "definitely picked up a ton of knowledge" just from watching Eric perform every night.  And Moore expects to further his touring education this summer as the opener on Toby Keith's "Hammer Down Tour," which will begin in Cincinnati, Ohio on June 14th.  But Kip adds that he has a "competitive nature," and is looking forward to the day when he's that headliner who's performing before thousands of fans in a packed stadium.  Kip is currently warming up the crowd for Brantley Gilbert.  They'll be in Tulsa, Oklahoma on Friday.


Taylor Swift's "Red" Returns To Top Ten


Taylor Swift's "Red" is back in the top ten on the Billboard 200. says the country-pop superstar is one of many artists who received a sales boost last week, courtesy of the Grammy Awards.  "Red" has climbed up eight places on the chart, leaping from the number 12 spot to number four with 72-thousand albums sold -- an increase of 106-percent over the previous week.  Taylor was both a performer and a winner at the Grammys, which took place on February 10th.  She opened the ceremony with "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together," and prior to the televised show she earned an award for "Safe & Sound," her collaboration with The Civil Wars and T Bone Burnett.  But "Billboard" adds that Swift's sales also benefited from a special Target promotion, which included commercials for "Red" that aired during the Grammys.


The new chart-topper is also a Grammy-driven disc.  Mumford And Sons' "Babel," which was named Album of the Year at the event, has reclaimed the number one spot with sales last week of 185-thousand, up 242-percent from the previous week.


Country Birthdays Include


Mary Chapin Carpenter is 55.

Eric Heatherly is 43.


Today In Country Music History


Today in 1948, Little Jimmy Dickens made his debut at the Grand Ole Opry.


Today in 1953, Hank Williams' "Kaw-Liga" hit number one on the country singles chart.


Today in 1976, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson topped the country singles chart with "Good Hearted Woman" -- a track from "The Outlaws" album.


Today in 1981, "9 To 5" by Dolly Parton topped the pop singles chart.


Today in 1981, Boxcar Willie became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.


Today in 1990, k.d. lang, Lyle Lovett and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band took top honors at the 32nd annual GRAMMY Awards.  Also, Hank Williams Jr. won the Best Country Vocal Collaboration GRAMMY for his duet with his late father, Hank Sr., "There's A Tear In My Beer."


Today in 1994, Houston Astrodome security guards tackled two cowboys invited on-stage by Wynonna during a show. Officials later apologized and offered the men free Wynonna concert tickets.


Today in 1996, Garth Brooks' album "Fresh Horses" was certified Gold, Platinum and triple-Platinum simultaneously.


Today in 1997, Alan Jackson's "Everything I Love" album was certified Gold and Platinum simultaneously.


Today in 2001, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw came in at number four and the Dixie Chicks took the number eight spot on "Money" magazine's list of the top 25 earners in the music industry and the VH1/"Money" Rock Star Index.  They were the only country artists on the list.


Today in 2001, and Ed Wood, AKA the "Fake Detective," reported that Shania Twain is one of most faked celebrities when it comes to nude photographs on the Internet. Some folks know that she turned down "Playboy's" offer to pose in the buff for their magazine a couple years ago and has declined to have herself photographed that way. Even so, many folks are fooled by the fakes floating around the Internet.


Today in 2001, Toby Keith's album "How Do You Like Me Now?!" was certified Platinum.


Today in 2002, Lonestar and Tim McGraw were among the stars on the American Red Cross' first-ever National Celebrity Cabinet.  Members committed to supporting the Red Cross mission for a one-year term of volunteer service.


Today in 2004, illness forced a couple of country stars to postpone concerts.  George Strait had to bump a show in Columbus, Ohio, because he had a throat infection, while Alabama had to put off a performance in Buffalo, New York, because frontman Randy Owen was recovering from an inner ear virus.


Today in 2005, Faith Hill was honored by her home state of Mississippi. Faith spoke in front of the House and Senate in an effort to promote the Mississippi Arts and Entertainment Center in Meridian.  But once she got there, legislators turned the tables on her and honored her as an ambassador of the state.


Today in 2006, Jessi Colter released "Out of the Ashes" and Merle Haggard had ten reissues on five discs arrive in stores.


Today in 2006, Wynonna Judd's estranged husband, D. R. Roach, entered the Shades of Hope Treatment Center in Buffalo Gap, Texas seeking treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. This is the same facility where Wynonna went for food addiction in 2006.  The couple had separated three days earlier.


Today in 2007, it was declared "Flatts Tuesday" in Nashville, in celebration of the group's four-million in sales with the albums "Feels Like Today" and "Me and My Gang" and a 2006 tour that drew more than a million fans.


Today in 2008, Dwight Yoakam and Crystal Gayle were among the new inductees into the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame.  Montgomery Gentry's Eddie Montgomery and his wife Tracy took part in welcoming the honorees.


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