George Strait Movie ‘Pure Country’ Sequelized; New Releases; Tracy Lawrence Compromises with Label

Brody Vercher | October 12th, 2010

  • Tracy Lawrence is at work on a new album that addresses hard times, so it’s only logical that it’s tentatively titled Hard Times. In an interview with The Daily Times’ Steve Wildsmith, Lawrence says the bulk of the album is the traditional fare he’s known for, but he had to make some concessions to get the music released. The lead-off single will have a more contemporary sound. It’s progressive enough that he thinks people might not even recognize its him.

    “As an artist, the challenge is to always push myself to that new place and pull a lot of young country fans, the ones out there listening to guys like Rascal Flatts, to that place with me. I came to Nashville to be a country artist, and I love what I do. If I could stay in my box, that would be great, but the fact is it’s a business.”

    (via The Boot)

  • For his new album, Charleston, SC 1966, Michael McCall says Darius Rucker ditched the traditional songs to focus solely on contemporary, radio-directed songs.

    But too often his new songs, all 13 of which he co-wrote, are constructed around a clever catchphrase rather than a convincing emotion. Songs like “Things I’d Never Do,” “I Got Nothin'” and the album’s first hit, “Come Back Song,” feature powerful performances that hardly vary in delivery and reveal little depth of feeling, despite dealing with serious topics.

  • The Boston Globe‘s Sarah Rodman on the new Darius Rucker record: “Rucker strictly plays by the rules but “Charleston’’ surpasses its predecessor on the strength of more vibrant and charming tunes.”
  • Country California Fake News: The Band Perry Adds William “The Fridge” Perry as Fourth Member

    Kimberly summed it up perfectly when she said, “We’re going to be twice the band we were before.”

  • The Texas Music Matters song of the day is a Studio 1A performance of “The Wandering” from Ryan Bingham.
  • Watch Jewel get in the boxing ring with an enlarged heart in her new video for the song “Ten.”
  • The inestimable Doc Watson on Mountain Stage.
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  • New releases for the week of October 12, 2010 include:

    • Aaron Watson – The Road & The Rodeo
      Amazon | iTunes

    • The Band Perry – The Band Perry
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Big Country Bluegrass – The Boys In Hats and Ties
      Artist Website | iTunes

    • Darius Rucker – Charleston, SC 1966
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Donna Hughes – Hellos, Goodbyes & Butterflies
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Gary Bennett – My Ol’ Guitar
      Amazon

    • Ken Mellons – Rural Route
      Amazon| iTunes

    • Lost & Found – Down On Sawmill Road
      iTunes

    • Miranda Lambert – Revolution: Live By Candlelight (Video)
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Ray Stevens – A Funny Thing Happened In Church Today!
      Amazon | Artist Website

    • Rosehill – White Lines and Stars
      Amazon | iTunes

    • The Secret Sisters – The Secret Sisters
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Trace Adkins – The Definitive Greatest Hits: Til The Last Shot’s Fired
      Amazon | iTunes

    • Whitey Morgan and the 78’s – Whitey Morgan and the 78’s
      Amazon | iTunes

  • My Kind of Country’s Occasional Hope gave Rural Route, the new bluegrass album from Ken Mellons, a solid A rating and says it’ll appeal to bluegrass and traditional country fans alike.
  • USA Today’s Jerry Shriver on The Sceret Sisters: “[…] this retro folk-country duo from Muscle Shoals, Ala., delivers the most charming debut of the year.”
  • NewFound Road is scheduled to record a live album in early December.
  • CMT’s Alison Bonaguro recapped last Friday’s CMA Songwriters concert in Chicago which featured Kix Brooks, Bob DiPiero, David Lee Murphy, and the sibling trio from The Band Perry.

    Brooks had time for one more story before the two-hour show came to an end. In introducing one of Brooks & Dunn’s most enduring hits, he talked about when Barack Obama was leaving the Democratic National Convention in 2008.

    “This guy is fixin’ to be president,” he said. “And I’ll be damned if he doesn’t start playing this song.”

    After that happened, Brooks said he got an immediate text message from John Rich, a staunch supporter of the Republican candidate at the time, John McCain, saying “Uncool, dude. Uncool.”

  • Saving Country Music reviewed the new, self-titled honky tonk album from Whitey Morgan and the 78’s.
  • Of her new song released on iTunes today, “Back to December,” Taylor Swift says its the first time she’s apologized in a song, but she’s not telling who it’s about. (iTunes)
  • Reba McEntire revealed the tracklist to All the Women I Am on her website.
  • Eighteen years after its release, the film Pure Country is being sequelized. Pure Country 2: The Gift will star country singer Katrina Elam while George Strait takes a more limited role in a script that sounds more than a little hokey:

    A Hollywood Reporter story late last year stated that the movie tells the story of three angels who give the gift of a beautiful singing voice to a baby girl (played as an adult by Katrina).

    “In her climb to fame and fortune, she breaks some of the angels’ rules, so they take away her big voice,” [director] Chris Cain said. “Life has rules; if you follow them, life works. That’s the moral of the story.”

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  1. Rick
    October 12, 2010 at 11:44 am

    I’m really looking forward to watching Katrina Elam in “Pure Country II”, and listening to her sing isn’t bad either! (lol) I don’t care how hokey it is, I’m in! Some of the songs you hear in the trailer are off Katrina’s never released second album “Turn Me Up”, so those songs will now at least be available on the movie soundtrack CD. I don’t know if this will revive Katrina’s country music career at country radio, but he recent additions on MySpace are anything but country! Yikes!

    Gosh, any desire I had to hear the new Tracy Lawrence album has been completely dissipated by Tracy’s comments. Not model PR by any means.

  2. Drew
    October 12, 2010 at 11:45 am

    Wow, that movie sounds pathetic.

  3. Cutting the Treacle
    October 12, 2010 at 11:45 am

    “In her climb to fame and fortune, she breaks some of the angels’ rules, so they take away her big voice,” [director] Chris Cain said. “Life has rules; if you follow them, life works. That’s the moral of the story.””

    Me: Also, it’s the Nuremberg defense. Good for Katrina for breaking angelic rules.

  4. Barry Mazor
    October 12, 2010 at 11:53 am

    I’m glad to see Katrina Elam back at work; she seemed to me to be a talent who was maybe not surviving Short Attention Span Industry.

  5. Stormy
    October 12, 2010 at 11:58 am

    She breaks some of the angels’ rules so they take away her big voice?? I thought that was a Sea Witch, not angels.

    Of course, that does lead to a pretty funny vision of Katrina Elam getting chased by Farrah Fawcett, Kate Jackson and Jaclyn Smith.

  6. Lewis
    October 12, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    Does it seem like that the Pure Country 2 trailer picture looks like a straight to DVD cover to you and it’ll fall into the same fate as Toby Keith’s Broken Bridges and Beer For My Horses movies and Clint Black’s Flicka 2 movie which went straight to DVD? The limited George Strait sitings also tell the tale about how bad it probably is compared to the first Pure Country movie which was actually very good.

  7. Sam G.
    October 12, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Pure Country 2 is just crying out for a sassy, computer-animated talking dog as a sidekick. Toby Keith could have done the voice.

  8. Barry Mazor
    October 12, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    I just wonder if they contracted in advance with CMT to play it 40 times a week for the next ten years..

  9. luckyoldsun
    October 12, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    I thought I should at least try to like Darius Rucker because he’s–ahem–different from the typical country artist and we should all strive to be more inclusive. So I bought his first CD–and I couldn’t stand it.

  10. WAYNOE
    October 12, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Tracy Lawrence – The sad thing is he sells his soul for the record label but very doubtful that it will matter in terms of charting & sales. A shame as he has a great voice.

    Darius Rucker – Hasn’t he always focused on contemporary, radio-directed songs? Just what we need, another pop-country act. Good grief.

  11. Mayor JoBob
    October 12, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    And I thought the first Pure Country was a corn-fest! Should’ve been “Strait” to video!

  12. Mayor JoBob
    October 12, 2010 at 4:40 pm

    Don’t worry lucky, you’re not a racist, you just have good taste in music!

    *ducks under table*

  13. Mike Wimmer
    October 12, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    That has to be one of the worst script ideas I have seen in a long time in regards to Pure Country #2

  14. Rick
    October 12, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    The “Pure Country 2″ article at The Boot reveals the film project was a family affair for the Cains. It was primarily written by “Superman” actor Dean Cain and directed by his father. Dean’s judgment has been suspect ever since he was almost engaged to Mindy McCready…

  15. Jon
    October 12, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Anent the (excellent) Ken Mellons album, Rural Route: Ken will be doing a CD release show at the Station Inn tomorrow (Wednesday, 10/13); I’ll be there, playing bass. Come on down!

  16. Lewis
    October 12, 2010 at 9:06 pm

    Why bother putting Strait on a trailer poster when his role in this movie probably amounts to about 5 minutes total much less with no Strait songs in the movie?

    Barry: It’ll probably premiere on CMT close to Christmas since it’s promoted as “Pure Country 2: The Gift” and you can also bet that it’ll be shown to death like they have done with the original.

    While we’re on the subject whatever happened to Lesley Anne Warren, Isabella Glaser and John Doe who were in the original Pure Country with George? Were they even considered for roles in this sequel?

  17. PaulaW
    October 13, 2010 at 9:55 am

    Ken will be doing a CD release show at the Station Inn tomorrow (Wednesday, 10/13); I’ll be there, playing bass. Come on down!

    Wow! Wish I could make that, but after being up there all last week, I dont think I can sneak away again tonight. :-(

  18. Lucas
    October 13, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Tracy owns his own label, things must be tight and he needs to sell more albums and digital singles to make payroll and a profit! Being your own boss, I can’t understand why he needs to compromise with himself?

    Can’t wait to see and hear Katrina; she was one of those who got crushed in the Universal/MCA/U South merger, which is a shame. She is every bit of a powerhouse vocalist as Carrie, writes more mature songs than Taylor and is hotter than either of them!

  19. Leeann Ward
    October 13, 2010 at 10:59 am

    Lawrence no longer owns his own label.

  20. Matt Bjorke
    October 13, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    Lucas,

    Universal South didn’t merge with UMG Nashville at any time. Katrina was let go after original people at Universal South (Tim Dubois and Tony Brown) left the label. Universal South didn’t merge w/anyone until the merger with Show Dog.

  21. Barry Mazor
    October 13, 2010 at 1:19 pm

    Plus, Lucas, Katrina can yodel.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GlyFactYvxM

  22. Rick
    October 13, 2010 at 5:47 pm

    Katrina Elam shot her own Top 40 country career in the foot a few years ago. She was the opening act on a Keith Urban tour and just dropped out and went back to Oklahoma about half way through the tour. That is not the way for a non-established new artist to behave without a compelling reason.

    Barry, Katrina’s yodel song “My Little Lady Who” is the closing track on her unreleased “Turn Me Up” album and is the main reason I acquired a copy. I really hope that song makes it onto the Pure Country II Soundtrack album so other yodel fans can enjoy it.

    I rarely agree with Lucas, but I’m with him on this one. Katrina’s song “Guess” (again on the unreleased album) is the equal to anything Carrie Underwood has recorded to date and I find Katrina’s voice much more pleasing to listen to.

  23. K
    October 13, 2010 at 8:26 pm

    I believe Katrina also opened for Rascal Flatts in the early part of the decade.

    She wrote “Flat On The Floor” and “Change”, which were both recorded by Carrie Underwood. She also wrote “Can You Handle It” by Katie Arminger, and “Easy,” which will be on the new Rascal Flatts album released in November. I also read she will be in “Pure Country 2″ alongside George Strait.

  24. tobysooner
    October 14, 2010 at 7:33 am

    “Flat On The Floor” was written by Brett James and Ashley Monroe

  25. Steve
    October 15, 2010 at 12:11 am

    To bad Tracy Lawrence is forced to sell out to get his music released. A shame…

    As for Darius Rucker — I loved his voice on his first album, but hated the material. The songs were all pretty predictable and bland. Sounds like his second album is more of the same.

  26. Charles Murphy
    October 15, 2010 at 12:22 am

    “The Gift” of this new Pure Country movie would be if it wasn’t actually made.

  27. Anna
    October 17, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    I have not see this movie but what i seen of the preview i don’t think i will like it like the lady said why make a movie that has Georgie Strait in the movie and only have him in it a total of min and no songs of his OMG his is country music and this movie will never make it to me iwould say it it a way to make money off his name and fame SHAME ON YOU

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