Nashville News and Notes for WEDNESDAY

Carrie Underwood To Sing "Sunday Night Football" Theme


Carrie Underwood is picking up where Faith Hill left off.  After Hill parted ways with the NFL in her "Sunday Night Football" theme song offering, comes word that Underwood will now be singing "Waiting All Day For Sunday Night."  Carrie's version of the SNF opener is expected to debut September 8th when the Dallas Cowboys host the New York Giants.  In a statement, Underwood said she is "thrilled" to be part of NBC's "Sunday Night Football," adding that she has always loved football season. 


Underwood is slated to star in an upcoming live production of "The Sound of Music" for NBC this fall.  "Sunday Night Football" producer Fred Gaudelli says the singer was the first and only choice for a new theme singer.


Montgomery Gentry Singer Abruptly Closes Kentucky Steakhouse


Montgomery Gentry's Eddie Montgomery appears to be out of the restaurant business.  His eatery in Harrodsburg, Kentucky closed suddenly over the weekend without explanation.  The country singer opened Eddie Montgomery's Steakhouse with his now ex-wife Tracy in the fall of 2009.  While the couple split up a year later, they remained co-owners of the restaurant.  Local media reports that employees learned Sunday that they were out of a job from a Facebook post from Tracy announcing the steakhouse was closed.  She doesn't give any explanation for the closing, but says it was something over which she had no control.  She also extends an apology to those who worked at the restaurant, and thanks them for their support "through this long difficult battle."


Eddie addressed the matter via Twitter on Monday, tweeting that they "unfortunately" had to close the steakhouse.  He says it had been his dream to "bring something back" to his hometown that they "could all be proud of."  He adds that he "will always try to support the community" he loves, and he thanks "everyone for their continued support."


George Jones Farewell Concert Becoming All-Star Tribute


The event that was supposed to mark George Jones' farewell concert is now being transformed into all-star tribute for the late country legend.  Jones' widow, Nancy Jones, posted a message on the singer's website saying the show will go on.  A number of artists had already signed on to participate and more are coming on board.  Garth Brooks, Kid Rock and Charlie Daniels are in.  So are Travis Tritt, the Oak Ridge Boys, Montgomery Gentry, Sam Moore, Jamey Johnson, among others.  The show is scheduled for November 22nd at the Bridgestone Arena.  Tickets are already sold out but Nancy recommends that fans keep checking Ticketmaster for ticket availability. 


George Jones died last month at the age of 81.  Several stars took part in an emotional memorial for the singer last week in Nashville.  Alongside Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Vince Gill, Kenny Chesney and others, the gathering also included remarks from former First Lady Laura Bush and CBS correspondent Bob Schieffer.


Lady A Releases Second Single From "Golden," Continue TV Promotion


With "Golden" now in stores, Lady Antebellum is also unveiling the second single from the disc.  The group's Charles Kelley says "Goodbye Town" is about "that time after a breakup when everything about a place reminds you of that person."  He adds that they used production techniques to enhance the mood of the song, and "reflect that almost haunting feeling."  "Goodbye Town" follows the chart-topping hit "Downtown," the lead-off release from "Golden."


Lady A continues to promote their new album with TV appearances.  Tonight the trio will launch their run on NBC's "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" with the first of two consecutive appearances on the show.  The group is not only serving as Wednesday and Thursday's musical guest, but they're expected to spend time chatting with Fallon as well.  More TV appearances are coming up next week, including E!'s "Chelsea Lately" on May 13th and NBC's "The Voice" on May 14th.


Pistol Annies Explains New Album's Lead-Off Track


Pistol Annies' new album kicks off with "I Feel A Sin Coming On," which has an a cappella opening.  But the trio's Miranda Lambert admits that wasn't necessarily what they were intending when they wrote the song.


But Pistol Annies' Ashley Monroe say "I Feel A Sin Coming On" was intentionally chosen to launch "Annie Up."  She explains that the track provides a good introduction to the disc, because they're "a little bit renegades" and they're "gonna do it again," so they "feel a sin coming on."  Pistol Annies' "Annie Up" is in stores now.  The album also features the trio's current single, "Hush Hush."


Kellie Pickler Unveils First Single Under New Label Deal


Kellie Pickler's found time between "Dancing With the Stars" rehearsals to record some new music.  The country star has sent the single "Someone Somewhere Tonight" to radio.  It's her first release under a new label deal with Black River Entertainment.  Kellie says she feels comfortable with the folks at her new musical home.


Kellie recorded her new single with producers Frank Liddell and Luke Wooten, who were also at the helm for her 2012 album, "100 Proof."   She says she's glad she was able to work with them again.  Pickler calls Liddell and Wooten "family," and says she believes they "captured Kellie on the last album, and now they're gonna put Kellie on this record too."  "Someone Somewhere Tonight" will be released on May 14th.


Shania Twain Announces Fall Vegas Dates


Shania Twain is unveiling fall dates for her Las Vegas show.  The country star will wrap up the first year of her two-year deal with 22 performances of "Shania: Still The One" at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace between October 15th and December 14th.   She'll begin the run with 12 shows throughout late October and early November, and resume on the Saturday after Thanksgiving with the first of her final ten shows of 2013.  Tickets for the new dates go on sale this Friday.


"Shania: Still The One" officially marked Shania's return to the concert stage.  She launched the show last December with her first live performance in nearly a decade.  The Vegas shows are the singer's first extended run of dates since her "Up" tour in 2003 and 2004.  Shania's next performances are coming up next week.  She'll begin her next slate of shows on May 14th.  Additional details on all upcoming performances are available at


New dates for "Shania: Still The One" at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace:


October: 15, 16, 18, 19, 23, 24, 26, 27, 29, 30

November : 2, 3, 30

December: 1, 3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, 14


Eric Church Among Country Stars Slated For ACL Fest


Eric Church is on board for this fall's Austin City Limits Music Festival.  He's one of a few country artists slated to take part in the event, which this year is expanding to two weekends.  The Mavericks, Court Yard Hounds, Asleep At The Wheel, and Holly Williams are also part of the rock-heavy lineup.  Depeche Mode, The Cure, Muse, and Kings of Leno are among the festival's headliners.  Lionel Richie, Fun., Queens of the Stone Age, Phoenix, and Wilco are also scheduled to appear.  The 2013 Austin City Limits Music Festival will take place at Zilker Park in Austin, Texas from October 4th through the 6th, and resuming on October 11th through the 13th.  Tickets and other details are available online at


Connie Britton An On-Screen And Real Life Mom


"Nashville" star Connie Britton isn't just an on-screen mom.  She also has a two-year-old son.  The actress adopted Eyob from Ethiopia in the fall of 2011, while she was on the FX series "American Horror Story."  Connie says the adoption process required two trips to Africa, so the show found a creative way of covering her absence.


On "Nashville," Connie's character Rayna Jaymes is the mom to daughters Maddie and Daphne Conrad, played by Lennon and Maisy Stella.  "Nashville" airs on ABC Wednesday nights at 10:00 p.m. Eastern.  Mother's Day is this Sunday.


Country Birthdays Include


Little Texas drummer Del Gray is 45.



Today In Country Music History


Today in 1976, Reba McEntire debuted on the country charts with her first single, "I Don't Want to be a One Night Stand."  It only reached number 88 on the charts.  It took four more years for Reba to score her first top ten hit, "(You Lift Me Up) To Heaven."


Today in 1992, Lee Roy Parnell released "A little Bit of You."


Today in 1999, Martina McBride made a cameo as herself on the CBS-TV drama "Early Edition."  The show focuses on a man named Gary who magically gets each day's newspaper a day early so he can prevent tragedies.  On Martina's episode, Gary reads that the singer will be seriously injured while rehearsing with her band, so he races to the concert hall to save her.


Today in 2000, Brad Paisley made his "Tonight Show" debut.


Today in 2000, Reba McEntire snagged the top spot on the "Billboard" Liquid Audio chart with the single "We're So Good Together."  It was her first foray into downloadable music.


Today in 2000, Kenny Rogers topped the country charts for the 22nd time with "Buy Me A Rose."  The single, from the CD "She Rides Wild Horses," also captured the number one slot on CMT's "Top 12 Video Countdown."


Today in 2001, Clint Black and Lisa Hartman Black welcomed their daughter, Lily Pearl, into the world.


Today in 2003, Darryl Worley was recognized once again for his support of the U.S. troops, as he was honored by the Tennessee General Assembly for his hit "Have You Forgotten."


Today in 2003, Tim McGraw's "She's My Kind of Rain" hit number one on the charts.


Today in 2005,  Mindy McCready was taken to a Nashville hospital after an ex-boyfriend, William McKnight, broke into her Bellevue home, where he beat and choked the singer.  He was charged with attempted murder, although the couple was back together just months later.


Today in 2006, Ricky Van Shelton announced plans to stop touring.  In an open letter to fans, he said he and his wife, quote, "want to be more involved with our immediate families and be available to them and their needs." 


Today in 2006, the Dixie Chicks made "Time" magazine's list 100 Most Influential People.


Today in 2007, Martina McBride filed for a restraining order against a man who had allegedly been stalking her for the past month.


Today in 2007, Billy Ray Cyrus was eliminated from "Dancing With the Stars."  In his parting words the singer noted that he held no grudge against the judges, referencing a heated exchange after Bruno Tonioli called his performances "crap," and said he appreciated the opportunity to "conquer a fear" by competing.


Today in 2007, Little Big Town's Kimberly Roads, Charlie Daniels, Carolyn Dawn Johnson, Emerson Drive's Brad Mates, Chely Wright, Blue County, and Megan Mullins took part in a luncheon in Nashville honoring Tony Martell, music industry veteran and founder of the T.J. Martell Foundation.


Today in 2010, Dolly Parton paid tribute to all the artists who have performed at her Dollywood theme park with the dedication of the Friendship Fountain, which is inscribed with each artists' name and the date of their Dollywood debut.


Today in 2010, Vince Gill and Amy Grant hosted the wedding and reception for Vince's oldest daughter, Jenny Gill, at their home in Nashville.


Today in 2011, Shania Twain's reality series "Why Not? With Shania Twain" debuted on Oprah Winfrey's OWN.


Today in 2012, Willie Nelson turned down Roseann Barr's offer to be her running mate in her bid to become the Green Party's presidential candidate in the 2012 general election.


Today in 2012, Alan Jackson played a special half-hour set on the Grand Ole Opry to showcase his then-latest album, "Thirty Miles West."


Today in 2012, Team Blake's Jermaine Paul was named "The Voice" on the season two finale of the NBC reality show.  Blake Shelton also performed, while Lady Antebellum was among the night's special guests.


Today in 2012, Trace Adkins was the keynote speaker at the American Red Cross' Williamson County, Tennessee chapter's 4th Annual Lifesaver Breakfast.  He shared how the organization came to the aid of his family in June 2011 after their home burned down.


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