Nashville News and Notes for THURSDAY

Swift A People's Choice Winner, Aldean Performs At The Event


Taylor Swift is celebrating yet another People's Choice win.  The singer got the nod for Favorite Country Artist at the event, which aired on CBS Wednesday night.  In accepting her award Taylor expressed her appreciation to her fans for giving her such strong support, particularly for her latest CD.


The Favorite Country nod marked Swift's fourth career People's Choice award.  Taylor was a three-time nominee, but didn't do as well in her other categories.  Her hit "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" fell to One Direction's "What Makes You Beautiful" for Favorite Song, while she was also up for Favorite Female Artist, but the title went to Katy Perry.  Taylor also participated in the ceremony.  She served as presenter, handing out the award for Favorite Movie.  Jason Aldean was on hand as well.  While he lost the Favorite Country honor to Taylor, he still rocked the house with his hit "My Kinda Party."  Meanwhile, Carrie Underwood and Blake Shelton were among those with multiple nominees heading into the event but were both shut out.


Keith Urban Up For Critics' Choice Award


Keith Urban could add to his trophy case this week.  The country star is among the nominees at the 18th annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards, which will air on the CW Thursday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.  Urban is in the running for Best Song with "For You," his contribution to the movie "Act Of Valor."  He's facing Mumford & Sons' "Learn Me Right" from the animated feature "Brave" and Adele's James Bond theme "Skyfall," as well as Paul Williams' "Still Alive" from "Paul Williams Still Alive" and "Suddenly, which Hugh Jackman performs in the movie "Les Misérables."


Keith is also in the running for a Golden Globe Award.  "For You" is nominated in the Original Song category at that event, which will air on NBC Sunday night.


Taylor Swift Among First Confirmed Grammy Performers


Taylor Swift isn't just a Grammy nominee this year -- she's also one of the show's performers.  The country-pop superstar is among the first artists confirmed for the upcoming ceremony.  Mumford & Sons are also on board for the event, along with Rihanna, fun., and The Black Keys.  They're each in the running for awards as well.  Taylor is heading into the event with three chances to win.  Her hit "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" is among the songs up for Record of the Year.  Her other bids include Best Country Duo/Group Performance and Best Song Written For Visual Media for the song "Safe & Sound," her collaboration with The Civil Wars for the movie "The Hunger Games."  The 55th annual Grammy Awards will take place in Los Angeles, and air on CBS on February 10th.


Keith Urban Explains Why He Likes "American Idol"


Keith Urban says he's a fan of "American Idol."  The country star is launching his run as a judge on the Fox reality show.  He says he really appreciates what "Idol" provides for aspiring artists.


Urban will be at the judges' table along with Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, and Randy Jackson for the shows 12th season, which begins next week on Fox.  The two-night premiere will air on January 16th and 17th at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.  But fans will be able to catch Keith on TV prior to the show's kick-off.  He'll be joining Randy and "Idol" host Ryan Seacrest as guests on NBC's "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" tonight at 11:35 p.m. Eastern.


Taylor Swift Falls On Billboard 200, Still Tops Digital Chart


Taylor Swift no longer reigns on the Billboard 200. says the singer's latest studio effort, "Red," has fallen a couple of rungs following a 72-percent drop in sales last week.  With 69-thousand in sales, the disc now occupies the number three spot.  The soundtrack to the film "Les Miserables" is the new chart topper, landing at number one with sales of 92-thousand.  Mumford & Sons has also surpassed Swift on the chart.  The British band's album "Babel" benefited from a special iTunes promotion last week, and logged sales of 91-thousand -- up 34-percent from the previous week.  Mumford's boost is similar to one Swift saw two weeks ago.  "Red's" hold on number one on last week's chart was attributed in part of a Christmas Eve Amazon MP3 sale.


However, Taylor still tops the Digital Songs chart.  Sales of "I Knew You Were Trouble" dropped by 44-percent last week, but the track still logged 326-thousand downloads to remain at number one.


Randy Houser Excited About Success Of Current SIngle


Randy Houser is keeping a close eye on the charts.  The country singer's hit "How Country Feels" has reached number two, and he admits he'd really like to see it climb up one more rung.


If "How Country Feels" goes to number one, it'll be Houser's first chart-topping hit.  He's come close to the peak position once before, with 2009's "Boots On," which peaked at number two.  "How Country Feels" is the title track from Randy's next album, which will hit stores on January 22nd.


Rascal Flatts Launching 2013 Tour


Rascal Flatts is heading back out on the road.  The group is launching their "Changed Tour 2013" with a show in Green Bay, Wisconsin Thursday night.  The guys will play 21 concerts over the course of the trek, which they'll bring to a close in Tupelo, Mississippi on March 2nd.  Shows will also feature sets from The Band Perry and Kristen Kelly, who are on board as openers.


The "Changed Tour" shares the name of Rascal Flatts' most recent album and latest single.  The group recently unveiled the video for the song "Changed," which is the third release off the album following the hits "Come Wake Me Up" and "Banjo."  But the single isn't the only new thing for Rascal Flatts in the new year.  The band has also revamped their website.  Fans can check out the new look of the band's online home at


Rascal Flatts "Changed Tour 2013" Dates


January 10 - Green Bay, Wisconsin, at the Resch Center

January 11 - Moline, Illinois at the iWireless Center

January 12 - Springfield, Missouri, at the JQH Arena

January 17 - Sioux City, Iowa, at the Tyson Events Center

January 18 - Tulsa, Oklahoma, at the BOK Center

January 19 - Wichita, Kansas, at the INTRUST Bank Arena

January 24 - Spokane, Washington, at the Spokane Arena

January 25 - Missoula, Montana, at the Adams Event Center

January 26 - Billings, Montana, at the Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark

February 7 - Terre Haute, Indiana, at the ISU Hulman Center

February 8 - Lexington, Kentucky, at Rupp Arena

February 9 - Columbus, Ohio, at the Nationwide Arena

February 14 - North Charleston, South Carolina, at the North Charleston Coliseum

February 15 - Greensboro, North Carolina, at the GreensboroColiseum

February 16 - Charlottesville, Virginia, at the John Paul Jones Arena

February 21 - Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, at the Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza

February 22 - Youngstown, Ohio, at the Covelli Center

February 23 - Pikeville, Kentucky, at the Eastern Kentucky Exposition Center

February 28 - Topeka, Kansas, at the Landon Arena

March 1 - Jonesboro, Arkansas, at the ASU Convocation Center

March 2 - Tupelo, Mississippi, at the BancorpSouth Arena


Eric Church Says New Single Very Meaningful For Him


Eric Church says his latest single is very special to him, even though it's a song he didn't write.  The country star explains that "Like Jesus Does" really resonates with how he feels about his wife.


Church explains that he recorded "Like Jesus Does" before he knew he and Catherine were going to become parents, and learning of her pregnancy made the song even more meaningful for him.  Eric's son, Boone McCoy, turned one this past October.  "Like Jesus Does" is the fifth single from Church's most recent album, "Chief."


Brantley Gilbert Working On Third Studio Album


Brantley Gilbert says he's making headway on his next album.  The country singer tells he has plenty of material for the project, explaining that he started with a pool of 250 songs to choose from.  Brantley says he now has "nine solid songs" along with 35 other tracks he's considering.  Gilbert adds that he's co-written every one of those songs.  He explains that while other artists "are good at picking songs that relate to situations in their lives and can express them well," he says the only way he can "get that expression, that kind of passion you need for a song" is if he's singing about something that he's actually experienced.


Gilbert adds that he's excited about his new material, but admits he has "no idea" when the disc will be ready for release.  The still-untitled effort will be Brantley's follow up to his 2010 sophomore CD, "Halfway To Heaven."


Today In Country Music History


Today In 1948, a 13-years-old Loretta Webb married Oliver "Mooney" Lynn.  Mooney and Loretta Lynn remained married until his death in 1996.


Today in 1950, Hank Williams Sr. recorded his first songs as Luke the Drifter.  The albums recorded under this name had more of a gospel leaning and included recitations from the Country Music Hall of Famer.


Today in 1956, Elvis Presley recorded "Heartbreak Hotel" in Nashville.  It was his first studio session for RCA Records.


Today in 1958, the single "Great Balls Of Fire" by Jerry Lee Lewis hit number one on the UK pop singles chart.


Today in 1982, The Oak Ridge Boys released the single "Bobbie Sue."


Today in 1991, the governor of Ohio commuted the prison sentence of Johnny Paycheck to time served.  He had been imprisoned after being convicted in a 1985 barroom shooting that left one man seriously wounded.


Today in 1991, Clint Black became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.


Today in 1992, Tracy Lawrence scored his first number one hit when his debut single, "Sticks and Stones," topped the country charts.


Today in 1998, Martina McBride was number one on the Billboard country chart with "A Broken Wing."


Today in 2004, Angel's House, an emergency shelter for children in Alan Jackson's hometown of Newnan, Georgia, was officially dedicated.  Alan and his wife Denise played a major role in generating interest in the facility and raising funds for it.


Today in 2005, the city council in Rincon, Georgia, approved a sign at the city limits proclaiming the community as the hometown of Billy Currington.


Today in 2006, Tim McGraw was named Favorite Male Performer at the People's Choice Awards in Los Angeles.


Today in 2006, Jack Ingram's album "Live - Wherever You Are" and BR549's CD "Dog Days" were among the new releases, while Elvis Presley's "Heartbreak Hotel" was reissued to mark the 50th anniversary of the day the singer began recording sessions for the track.


Today in 2006, Alan Jackson's "Remember When" was certified as a Platinum-selling digital single.


Today in 2007, Sara Evans performed "You'll Always Be My Baby" on ABC's "Good Morning America" to promote her upcoming tour, which began two days later.


Today in 2007, Jake Owens song "Yee Haw" is played for the second time in the television series "Friday Night Lights."


Today in 2008, George Strait's album "22  More Hits" is certified Gold by the Recording Association of America.


Today in 2009, Taylor Swift was the musical guest on NBC's "Saturday Night Live."  Her appearance included performances of "Love Story" and "Forever And Always."


Today in 2010, John Rich became a dad, as he and his wife, Joan, celebrated the birth of their first child, son Cash Rich, in Nashville.


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