Nashville News and Notes for THURSDAY

Billy Ray Cyrus Believes Bieber Needs Time To "Chill Out"


Billy Ray Cyrus says he thinks Justin Bieber needs some time to just get away from it all.  The country star tells "Access Hollywood" he believes there are "lots of people talking to him right now," so his advice to the troubled teen pop star wouldn't come in the form of words.  He says he'd simply invite Justin to "come down and chill out" with him in Tennessee.  Billy Ray explains that they could "build a fire, count the deer and the hawks, and relax a little bit," and take some time to "think about what’s important."  Cyrus adds that Bieber is "a great artist," and he's hoping Justin will "enjoy a little bit of what he’s got and focus back on the music."


Bieber caused a stir in Toronto Wednesday as he surrendered to authorities.  He reportedly returned to Canada to be booked in connection with an alleged assault on his limo driver last month.  Last week Bieber was arrested in Miami for DUI, drag racing and resisting arrest.


The Band Perry Excited About The Super Bowl


The Band Perry's Kimberly, Neil, and Reid Perry are looking forward to performing at this weekend's Super Bowl.  The country stars say they enjoy the big game every year, but for different reasons.  For Kimberly, it's about the music.


But Neil is interested in the main attraction.  He says he's a football fan, and he's excited about getting to actually see the game in person this year.  Reid, however, doesn't share his brother's passion for the sport, but watches the game for the commercials.  He adds that while he's there he'll try to be within eyeshot of a TV as much as possible so he can see this year's ads.  The Band Perry will be taking part in the Super Bowl pre-game festivities.  The country group is among the performers set for the NFL Tailgate Party, which will be included in the Fox coverage of Sunday's game.


Alan Jackson, Kid Rock Commit To SeaWorld Concerts


Alan Jackson and Kid Rock are still on board for SeaWorld's annual concert festival, which begins this weekend.  The Bands, Brew, & BBQ Festival appeared to be in doubt after nearly a dozen acts cancelled their performances because of the movie "Blackfish" and an internet campaign to stop their shows.  But Jackson will perform Saturday afternoon while Kid Rock is set to take the stage on Sunday.  SeaWorld has yet to announce what other acts will fill the holes in the concert schedule that runs through March 9th.  Willie Nelson, Trisha Yearwood, Trace Adkins, and Martina McBride are among the country stars who have dropped out of the SeaWorld event.


ACM Nominations Unveiled, Lambert, McGraw Lead The Pack


Miranda Lambert, Tim McGraw and Keith Urban are leading the nominees for this year's Academy of Country Music Awards.  Lambert and McGraw picked up seven nominations each, while Urban snagged six.  Taylor Swift, Blake Shelton, Lee Brice and recent Grammy winner Kacey Musgraves are also among the multiple nominees with five nods each.  The ACM also gave nods to music legend Bob Dylan and rapper Nelly for their work in country music over the past year.  Sports broadcaster Erin Andrews, "Duck Dynasty's" Willie and Korie Robertson and Katy Perry were among those who helped announced the nominations online Wednesday morning.


CBS will present the 49th ACM Awards live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, April 6th.  Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan will host the ceremony.


Here is a partial list of nominees for the 49th ACM Awards:


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


Lee Brice

Brett Eldredge

Tyler Farr

Justin Moore

Kip Moore

Kacey Musgraves


Thomas Rhett


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’


Song of the Year


Gary Allan, ‘Every Storm (Runs Out of Rain)’

Lee Brice, ‘I Drive Your Truck’

Miranda Lambert, ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’

Blake Shelton, ‘Mine Would Be You’

Darius Rucker, ‘Wagon Wheel’


Single Record of the Year


Florida Georgia Line, ‘Cruise’

Tim McGraw (Feat. Taylor Swift and Keith Urban), ‘Highway Don’t Care’

Lee Brice, ‘I Drive Your Truck’

Miranda Lambert, ‘Mama’s Broken Heart’

Darius Rucker (Feat. Lady Antebellum), ‘Wagon Wheel’


Video of the Year


The Band Perry, ‘Better Dig Two’

Kacey Musgraves, ‘Blowin’ Smoke’

Tim McGraw (Feat. 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 (Feat. Pistol Annies and Friends), ‘Boys ‘Round Here’

Florida Georgia Line (Feat. Nelly), ‘Cruise (Remix)’

Tim McGraw (Feat. Taylor Swift and Keith Urban), ‘Highway Don’t Care’

Darius Rucker (Feat. Lady Antebellum), ‘Wagon Wheel’

Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert, ‘We Were Us’


Songwriter of the Year


Rhett Atkins

Rodney Clawson

Ashley Gorley

Luke Laird

Shane McAnally


Kacey Musgraves, Taylor Swift See Grammy Sales Benefit


Kacey Musgraves is getting more than a couple of awards out of last weekend's Grammy Awards.  The country star is also seeing a significant increase in sales of her award-winning album, "Same Trailer Different Park." says the set had the highest Grammy-related boost in sales, which by the end of Sunday were up 147-percent over the previous week.  With ten-thousand copies of the album sold, the disc is also leaping back up the Billboard 200, going from number 81 to number 28 on the all-genre list.  "Billboard" adds that the album is expected to see even greater gains on next week's chart.


Taylor Swift is also benefiting from the Grammys.  While she didn't take home any awards, her nominated album "Red" still posted a sales increase of 105-percent, and with eight-thousand copies sold is jumping from the number 84 spot to number 36.  In addition, downloads of the track "All Too Well," which she performed on the show, rose by three-thousand-280-percent, from less than one-thousand the previous week to 18-thousand.


Lee Brice Appreciates Luke Bryan's Headlining Generosity


Lee Brice says he couldn't be happier on Luke Bryan's tour.  Lee tells that Bryan doesn't run his shows like a typical headliner, but is using his status to support his openers.  He explains that some stars "want to save a little something just for themselves -- so you can't go on certain parts of their stage.  But Lee says Luke's "not like that," and instead is giving him access to "all the lights, all the stage" and encouraging him to "use it all."  Brice adds that Luke is "humble, he's selfless, and he's there for the party," which is simply "Luke being Luke."  He says Luke has told him the shows aren't designed to make him look "bigger or better" than his openers, but he wants all the performers to "get out there" and give the fans "the best time."


Cole Swindell is also an opener on Bryan's "That's My Kind Of Night Tour," which launched earlier this month and continues through October.  Their next show will be in Lubbock, Texas on Thursday.


Craig Campbell Covers Lorde's "Royals" At Nashville Club


Craig Campbell is getting attention for his cover of Lorde's "Royals."  TMZ captured the singer putting a country spin on the Grammy-winning pop hit during a performance Monday at a Nashville club. adds that Craig's rendition of "Royals" got such a strong reception that he played the song again Tuesday at a "Nashville Lifestyles" magazine event.  Craig's performances follow Lorde's success with the song at the Grammy Awards.  "Royals" got the nod for Song of the Year and Best Solo Pop Performance at Sunday's event.


Brantley Gilbert Enjoys Latest Single


Brantley Gilbert admits his latest single is a little bit different for him.  But the country star says he really enjoys the song "Bottoms Up."


Brantley explains that he doesn't follow any particular formula when he's writing songs, and isn't thinking about crafting a chart-topping hit.  He says he just dives in and writes whatever he and his partners "find fit for the moment."  "Bottoms Up" is the lead-off single from Gilbert's upcoming album, "Just As I Am."


Eric Church Is A Big Reader


Eric Church's interest in words goes well beyond song lyrics.  He's also a voracious reader.  The country star says mysteries are his favorite, but he enjoys all kinds of material.


Church says the last book he read was "Wild," author Cheryl Strayed's personal account of the journey she took along the Pacific Crest Trail following the death of her mother.  And in addition to reading, the singer is spending time these days prepping for the release of his next album.  "The Outsiders," which includes Eric's current single "Give Me Back My Hometown," will hit stores on February 11th.


Pete Seeger Still Receiving Guthrie Center-Grammy Museum Honor


Pete Seeger's death isn't keeping the Woody Guthrie Center from honoring him.  The folk icon, who passed away Monday at the age of 94, is the inaugural recipient of the Woody Guthrie Prize.  The award recognizes artists who through their work reflect Woody's spirit and provide a voice for those less fortunate.  Seeger was expected to be on hand to accept the prize and perform at the ceremony.  And Woody's daughter Nora Guthrie says the event will go on, although the focus is shifting a bit.  She says it will now serve as a celebration of Seeger's life and music.  She adds that Pete won't be remembered with a moment of silence, because if he knew they were going to "honor him by not singing, he would be furious."  Nora says instead attendees will "take all the moments to sing -- as loudly and with as many harmonies" as they "can muster."


The Guthrie Center, which is staging the event along with the Grammy Museum, is now looking for performers to take part in the show, and hopes to announce a lineup soon.  The event, which has been dubbed "How Can I Keep From Singing!" will take place at the Peter Norton Symphony Space in New York on February 22nd.


Country TV Tonight


HEADLINE COUNTRY (GAC) Brett Eldredge, Vince Gill and Paul Franklin, the Grammy Awards, the ACM nominations, and the BMI Crested Butte Songwriters festival are covered.


Country Birthdays Include


Jeanne Pruett is 77.

Tammy Cochran is 42.

Josh Kelley is 34.


Today In Country Music History


Today in 1956, Elvis Presley recorded his version of "Blue Suede Shoes."


Today in 1958, a 20-year-old Merle Haggard was convicted of second degree burglary, after a botched break-in attempt at a Bakersfield, California nightclub.   He served two years and nine months in prison at San Quentin, and he really did "turn 21 in prison," as he sang in his hit "Mama Tried."   He was paroled in 1960, and eventually pardoned by then-California governor Ronald Reagan in 1972.


Today in 1988, Kathy Mattea earned her first chart-topping single with "Goin' Gone."


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


Today in 1999, Jo Dee Messina's "Stand Beside Me" hit number one on the chart.


Today in 2000, Faith Hill sang the national anthem at Super Bowl 34, with Travis Tritt performing in the pre-game show.


Today in 2001, LeAnn Rimes' album "I Need You" arrived in stores.  Around the time of the release, LeAnn took the highly unusual step of publicly distancing herself from the project.  She even denounced the existence of the album, saying it was an unauthorized move by the record company.


Today in 2001, Shania Twain, and LeAnn Rimes were among those who made "Stuff" magazine's list of the "2001 Sexiest Women," while Faith Hill was one of the top picks in the seventh annual Hanes Hosiery Sexy Legs Survey.


Today in 2002, Alan Jackson's "Drive" debuted on the Canadian album charts at number one.


Today in 2002, Freddy Fender was released from a San Antonio, Texas, hospital after having a kidney transplant the week before.  Fender had been having problems related to diabetes and hepatitis C.


Today in 2005, Digital gold singles were awarded for Kenny Chesney's duet with Uncle Kracker, "When the Sun Goes Down," Alan Jackson's "Remember When" and Brad Paisley's collaboration with Alison Krauss, "Whiskey Lullaby."


Today in 2006, Dierks Bentley celebrated the chart-topping success of his single "Come a Little Closer" with a party in Nashville.


Today in 2006, LeAnn Rimes was included in the ABC special "InStyle: Celebrity Weddings."


Today in 2007, Julie Roberts traveled to Europe on behalf of the Country Music Association, launching her trip in Ireland.


Today in 2007, new album releases included Clint Black's "The Love Songs," Tracy Lawrence's "For The Love," and the compilation "Totally Country Vol. 6," which featured songs from Faith Hill, The Wreckers, Kenny Chesney, Carrie Underwood and Sugarland, as well as Gary Allan, Lonestar, Keith Anderson, and Gretchen Wilson.


Today in 2008, Emerson Drive drummer Mike Melancon married Heather Zradicka on a beach near Playa del Carmen, Mexico.  Band members David Pichette and Danick Dupelle were his best men.


Today in 2008, Tim McGraw and his wife, Faith Hill, performed with the Nashville Symphony.  The event at Nashville's Schermerhorn Symphony Center supported Nashville's Habitat For Humanity.  In addition, Hill posted her covers of Elvis Presley's "That's All Right Mama" and "Peace in the Valley" on her website.  It was online debut of her video for "That's All Right Mama." 


Today in 2008, Gary Allan appeared on CBS' "The Late Show with David Letterman," and performed the hit "Watching Airplanes."  The singer had been booked on the CBS show four previous times but couldn't keep the dates because they were all during the writers' strike.


Today in 2010, Loretta Lynn, Bobby Darin and Michael Jackson received Grammy Lifetime Achievement Awards.


Today in 2011 Carrie Underwood and husband Mike Fisher made a surprise appearance during Brad Paisley's concert at Scotiabank Place in Ottawa.  They joined Brad, Darius Rucker and Jerrod Niemann on the grand finale number, "Alcohol."


Today in 2011, Vince Gill sang "Go Rest High On That Mountain" for Charlie Louvin's funeral in Nashville.


Today in 2011, Montgomery Gentry concluded an eight-day USO tour of American military bases in Japan and South Korea.


Today in 2011, Ronnie Dunn's "Bleed Red," his first single as a solo artist after the Brooks & Dunn split, was released.


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