Gary Allan to Undergo Vocal Cord Surgery; Inaugural American Country Awards Nominees; Music City Roots Splits with WSM
- Gary Allan had to reschedule/cancel a couple of dates scheduled for December to undergo minor surgery to remove a polyp from a vocal cord.
- Voting for the inaugural American Country Awards — the only country music awards determined soley by fans — opens today. Lady Antebellum and Easton Corbin lead the nominations with seven each.
- Austin musicians Bradley Kyle Schroeder and Chase Monks — both members of the Bo Cox Band — were killed in a head-on collision last Thursday. (via Galleywinter)
- The Texas Music Matters song of the day is Elizabeth McQueen‘s “You’re To Blame.”
- Jon Caramanica’s issues with the new Sugarland album don’t have anything to do with its classification as country music.
As tweakers of Nashville orthodoxies, they’re goofy and fun, but clumsy. “Stuck Like Glue” opens with a bit of pseudo-beatboxing, though it’s notable more for being irksome than for being novel. “Find the Beat Again” sounds like a No Doubt homage. And there are blatant errors of judgment on this album, particularly the increased vocal presence of Mr. Bush, whose anguished scrape is a heavy anchor pulling down “Stand Up,” “Wide Open,” and the many songs on which he sings harmony at the chorus.
- MusicRow has a full list of songwriters who were awarded the CMA’s Triple Play Award, which honors songwriters who have written three chart-topping hits in a 12 month period.
- Country California: Quotable Country – 10/17/10 Edition
- John Rich is part of the initial cast for this year’s Celebrity Apprentice.
- String Theory Media’s Craig Havighurst took to his blog to relay the events that forced Music City Roots to leave WSM for Lightning 100, WRLT-FM, Nashville’s signature voice for independent music.
But as the year went on and the time to renew the contract approached, things bogged down. Todd and John communicated with Steve Buchanan, senior vice president of media and entertainment for Gaylord Entertainment, the company that owns WSM, the Grand Ole Opry and the Ryman. According to Todd and John, Buchanan expressed vague dissatisfaction with the MCR/WSM relationship, indicating that he wished Gaylord had more control, equity and revenue. But he would not be specific about what he wanted to see in a revised contract. According to Walker, Buchanan expressed concern that Music City Roots would grow and then drop WSM. He was assured that was not true, that Roots and WSM were intended to be inseparable, conjoined brands. “We expressed total willingness to put that in writing,” Walker says. “But Steve would never engage in any serious, point by point dialog. In fact, after we pursued him for weeks, accepting excuse after excuse for not meeting or putting something in writing, we finally got him on a conference call.” On that call, Buchanan said the only way forward was for Gaylord to own and control Music City Roots. He asked Todd and John to name a price, either for 100% equity or 50% with artistic control.
- A benefit concert and auction to help Charlie Louvin with his medical costs will be held later this month in Bell Buckle, Tennessee. Ed Bruce and the Wildwood Valley Boys are the only confirmed performers so far, with more to be announced soon. Then starting in November, Louvin plans to hit the road for a 50th anniversary Satan Is Real tour.
- In his Billboard cover story, Tom Roland notes that Taylor Swift‘s new record wasn’t originally titled Speak Now:
“At one point, the record was not called ‘Speak Now.’ It was called ‘Enchanted,’ ” Borchetta says. “We were at lunch, and she had played me a bunch of the new songs. I looked at her and I’m like, ‘Taylor, this record isn’t about fairy tales and high school anymore. That’s not where you’re at. I don’t think the record should be called “Enchanted.” ‘ ”
Swift excused herself from the table at that point. By the time she came back, she had the “Speak Now” title, which comes closer to representing the evolution that the album represents in her career and in her still-young understanding of the world.
- The Bluegrass Blog posted a sample of Bobby Osborne‘s “Bring Back Yesterday,” the first single from his upcoming 60th anniversary album on Rural Rhythm, Memories: Celebrating Bobby’s 60th Anniversary as a Professional Entertainer.
- The ceremony for the next class of inductees into the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame won’t take place until next October, but when it does, it’ll include Connie Smith and Kathy Mattea.
- Brad Paisley plans to release The Diary of a Player, a book detailing how he became who he is today, in May 2011.
- There isn’t a bum paragraph in the latest installment of fake news from Country California: Taylor Swift Fart Recording Goes Quintuple Platinum.
Some critics have been less kind, criticizing the use of AutoTune technology on the track and suggesting that there’s no way Swift would be able to toot so prettily in a live concert setting. Swift is expected to answer those criticisms during an October 24 appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, where she’ll chat up the chinny host and flatulate in rhythm to some of her favorite songs by Def Leppard and Taylor Dayne.
- The success of Billy Currington‘s “Pretty Good at Drinkin’ Beer” was celebrated last Thursday with a No. 1 party — and beer. GAC’s Tom Roland has the recap.
- Point of Grace took home entertainer of year honors during last Thursday’s Inspirational Country Music Awards ceremony, but mainstream stars Carrie Underwood and Craig Morgan, and sometimes bluegrass artist Ricky Skaggs, were among the winners too.
- Taylor Swift says it was important to her to make Speak Now available on vinyl.
- With The Incredible Machine, Kristian Bush suggests that he and his Sugarland partner Jennifer Nettles are reinventing country music:
“There’s a very long history of reinvention in country music, maybe more than any other genre,” Bush said. “Every time, country music survived. The genre not only needs it, but it’s part of its hall of fame. I get nervous, but I can’t wait to find out what people think. Add a dash of Blondie, Simple Minds, the Clash and Johnny Cash — this is what you’re going to come up with.”
- Rhonda Vincent and the Rage give a lesson in what to do when power goes out during a performance.
- If Carrie Underwood‘s performance at Bridgestone Arena last Wednesday proved anything, The Tennessean‘s Cindy Watts says it’s that “she’s grown more as a performer in two short years than many artists do over the course of a career.”
- Chet Flippo relayed a story about Solomon Burke playing “Down In the Valley” for 45 minutes at a KKK rally.
- Peter Cooper recapped the recent Nashville Songwriter’s Hall of Fame ceremony honoring Pat Alger, Steve Cropper, Paul Davis, and Stephen Foster. Awards were also passed out for achievements over the past year, which included a win for Taylor Swift, who collected her third songwriter/artist of the year award in the past four years
- Miranda Lambert‘s Revolution has been certified platinum.
Here’s Darrell Scott performing “A Crooked Road,” the title track from his latest album, for Music Fog. He makes playing guitar look so effortless.
- Stuart Munro: I think this just moves the location of the discussion, Jack. If I named a bunch of rock artists who …
- Leeann Ward: Um, that's too much geekery for me to follow, Sam! My husband would understand you though.:)
- Jack Williams: Alabama Shakes won the AMA Emerging artist award couple of years ago. Also, classic soul influenced artists like Bettye Lavette, …
- Applejack: It certainly seems to me like the inclusion of St. Paul and the Broken Bones stretches the limits of how …
- Stuart Munro: Yes, that's the issue: is the tent so big as to have no boundaries? What *isn't* Americana? Is jazz? Is …
- Jack Williams: Um, roots music, that is.
- Jack Williams: Well, Americana is a pretty big tent. Classic southern soul falls under my personal definition of root music.
- Stuart Munro: Is it just me...or does the idea of St. Paul and the Broken Bones being an Americana act really strain …
- Sam G.: Loki Is playing Hank Williams in a new movie, and Thor bought the rights to a book about him. I …
- Roger: Fabulous interview and fantastic new music that I will listen to over and over again.