Tom “Cat” Reeder Passes Away; Opry Plans Minnie Pearl Centennial Celebration; New Music Videos

Ken Morton, Jr. | July 2nd, 2012

  • This year’s nominees for induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame include Gretchen Peters, Tony Arata, Robert Byrne, and Beth Nielsen Chapman. Read the entire list of nominees here.
  • David Nail will release a three song EP called 1979 on July 17. It will include his cover of Adele’s “Someone Like You.”
  • WAMU’s Bluegrass Country is celebrating their 45th anniversary with a special show today at noon Eastern: “WAMU introduced its first bluegrass radio show, the half-hour ‘Bluegrass Unlimited,’ with Dick Spottswood as host and Gary Henderson as engineer and associate producer. 45 years later to the day, Spottswood and Henderson will reunite to celebrate this momentous occasion during a special edition of ‘The Gary Henderson Show.’ Tune in…to hear these two legends of bluegrass broadcasting reminisce about their time at WAMU, share archival audio, and most importantly—play bluegrass music.”
  • Tom “Cat” Reeder, a WAMU Bluegrass Country DJ and member of the Country Radio Hall of Fame, passed away this weekend.
  • Bluegrass Today’s Terry Herd did a video interview with Vince Gill where he tackled questions about his love of bluegrass music.
  • An early list of Americana Music Festival performers has been released. It includes Billy Joe Shaver, Brandi Carlile, Deep Dark Woods, Punch Brothers, Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside, Eilen Jewell, John Fullbright and more.
  • The Miami Herald interviewed Henry Thomas, star of the new Hank Williams film, The Last Ride: “I was really intimidated by the role. I started obsessing about trying to look like him … and all of the things that go through your mind when you start focusing on playing a person who’s that iconic. You don’t want to drop the ball.”
  • Mark your calendar for Tuesday, October 23. That night, the Grand Ole Opry will be dedicating an entire show to celebrate what would have been Minnie Pearl’s 100th birthday.
  • Hunter Hayes’ “Wanted” was certified gold by the RIAA. (via press release)
  • Tim McGraw and his lawyers responded to Curb Records’ take on the court’s decision last week on the messy divorce they’re going through.
  • Tom T. and Dixie Hall are working on a new project called Daughters of Bluegrass and will include Becky Schlegel, Rebekah Long, Donna Ulisse, Jeanette Williams and others. (via Donna Ulisse’s newsletter)
  • “Bait a Hook” singer Justin Moore just signed a multi-year endorsement deal with Cabela’s, a major retailer of outdoor, fishing and hunting equipment. (via press release)
  • Hayes Carll’s Flowers and Liquor is going to be re-released this summer. (via press release)
  • In case you had the major desire to smell like Taylor Swift, be on notice that she’s changed her signature scent and Wonderstruck Enchanted should now be on your shopping list.
  • Corey Smith was admitted to the hospital for appendicitis.
  • Alan Jackson auctioned off front row seats at his Colorado concert last week and donated all the proceeds to the Colorado Wildfire Relief Fund.
  • Congratulations to our friend Rita Ballou of Rawhide and Velvet. She’s the newest (nekkid) celebrity endorser of the Boot Campaign, a charitable organization that is involved with, among other things, the Not Alone organization, which provides free counseling to soldiers and their families who have been affected by PTSD.
  • Peter Cooper wrote a feature on Sarah Darling for the Tennessean. A quote: “I have more things going on now than some artists with massive hits, and we’ve done all this stuff without radio airplay,” she says. “I get in conversations with program directors now, and they’re saying, ‘I feel like this is your time.’ ”
  • Billy Joe Shaver interview: “I’m more like Outcast Country.
  • Tennessee’s $500,000 donation to help build a Birth of Country Music Museum in Bristol, Virginia was tagged as “wasteful spending” by a watchdog group.
  • Music videos from the past week or so:

The Infamous Stringdusters – “Don’t Mean Nothin’”

Lady Antebellum – “Wanted You More”

The Mavericks – “Born to be Blue”

Mindy Smith – “Closer”

Aly Cook – “Country Storm”

Sabrina Alison – “If It Wasn’t for You”

Christy Angeletti – “Driving Me Crazy”

Hunter Hayes – “Somebody’s Heartache” (Live at the O Awards)

Ray Wylie Hubbard – “Mother’s Blues”

Megan McAllister – “No Woman”

Candi Carpenter – “My Fault Too”

Stetson & Cia – “Waves”

The Justin Guthrie Band – “She’s Gone Crazy”

Matt Bailie – “Everyday You”

  1. Rick
    July 2, 2012 at 3:48 pm

    Jason Heath and the Greedy Souls did a live CD Release Party show yesterday at LA’s Grand Ole Echo for their new “Packed For Exile” CD which is officially released tomorrow. I snagged a freebie copy and its pretty darn good for an Americana realm album! I especially like the common use of accordion throughout the album and the variety of music styles involved. Rating: 4 Stars.

    So the Opy is going to have Wednesday night shows that compete with Music City Roots eh? That’s just awesome…

    Speaking of “The Last Ride” Hank Williams flick, on Saturday afternoon I tuned into the comedic “The Fabulous Lisa Ann Walter Show” and Jett Williams was her in studio guest. Jett was in LA for the premiere of the film and they discussed the known information regarding the night Hank died in the back of that Cadillac. Some of Jett’s comments seemed more suited to the Art Bell era of the late night “Coast to Coast” radio show. (lol)

    That “Daughters of Bluegrass” project would be far more interesting if it included Melonie Cannon and the self proclaimed Hillbilly Goddess Alecia Nugent. Oh well.

  2. luckyoldsun
    July 2, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    I recall that when Jett Williams–with that invented, assumed name–came on the scene, Hank Jr. did not accept her at all, and she only got her rights to her share of Hank Williams’ estate by suing for it and winning.

    In recent years, though, whenever there’s a project involving Hank Williams, Jett seems to be the Williams heir who manages it and gets quoted–and Junior’s barely mentioned at all. That was the case with the “Unreleased Recordings” and “Lost Notebooks” and now this.

    Have Hank Jr. and Jett made peace with each other and are they working together? I don’t think they’re pals now, because I don’t recall ever seeing them appear anywhere together. But I’d be interested in hearing from someone with any inside knowledge.

  3. Ken Morton, Jr.
    July 2, 2012 at 7:03 pm

    LuckyOldSon, I did an interview with Jett a couple years back for The 9513 and asked her specifically about her relationship with Hank Jr: http://www.the9513.com/talking-hank-sr-with-jett-williams/

    Her answer was “We go along to get along.” My fairly non-insider take on it is that they’re both equally passionate about their father’s legacy but that they aren’t at one another’s holiday dinners.

  4. Jon
    July 3, 2012 at 7:46 am

    Alecia Nugent is most certainly not a “self-proclaimed Hillbilly Goddess.” Maybe you should spend less time ogling and more time listening, Rick.

    The bit about the forthcoming Daughters of Bluegrass album is a bit misleading; it’ll actually be the fourth project to be released under that name. Previous entries have won an IBMA award or two…

  5. luckyoldsun
    July 3, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    Ken,
    Interesting. A lot of the general public are only vaguely aware of who Hank Williams was, so when they hear that Jett is Hank’s daughter, they assume that’s always been her identity and that’s how she grew up.

    When that controversy occurred recently involving Hank Jr.’s inflammatory comments about President Obama, I noticed that in several cable news discussions, the reporter or commentator referred to him simply as “Hank Williams.” From the way they said it, I’m quite sure, these newspersons did not even know that “Hank Williams” was somebody else!

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