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Wednesday
Feb122014

Little Big Town's "Sober" Video Is a Love Letter to the Fans

Capitol NashvilleLittle Big Town has turned their latest hit, "Sober," into a love letter to their fans. The song's new video was shot on the road last year and features concertgoers singing along with every word of the song. It's available now at People.com.

LBT's Kimberly Schlapman, who sings lead on "Sober," says the sweet lyrics remind her of her first husband, who passed away in 2005. She's now married to Stephen Schlapman and they have a daughter named Daisy.

Kimberly tells People, "I have experienced what it means to lose the love of your life. And I've experience what it feels like to love again after great loss, so this song touches me so deeply in my heart."

"Sober" is the fourth single from Little Big Town's platinum-selling album, Tornado.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

"Born to Run" Tops "Rolling Stone" Magazine's List of Top 100 Bruce Springsteen Songs

Photo: Danny ClinchRolling Stone has put together a panel of well-known musicians, journalists and other music-industry figures to assemble a list of Bruce Springsteen's 100 greatest songs, and the Boss' breakout 1975 tune "Born to Run" has landed at the top of the tally.

Among the judges tapped to rank Bruce's songs are E Street Band guitarist Steven Van Zandt, Jackson Browne, recent Springsteen collaborator Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, actor Edward Norton, Arcade Fire singer Win Butler and writers David Fricke, Mikal Gilmore and Alan Light.

Speaking with Rolling Stone about "Born to Run" on the occasion of the song's 30th anniversary back in 2005, Springsteen said, "I wanted to make the greatest rock record that I'd ever heard, I wanted it to sound enormous, to grab you by your throat and insist that you take that ride, insist that you pay attention -- not just to the music, but to life, to being alive."

Coming in at #2 was "Badlands," from the 1978 album Darkness at the Edge of Town.  Browne told Rolling Stone that he was impressed by the multiple vocals the Boss contributed to the song, noting, "That's him singing the high part, while his other voice, this full-throated thing, continues below.  It's cool and thrilling."  Jackson added, "There is an economy of language that comes in here.  He's building a persona, a lexicon of references."

In the third spot is "Thunder Road," the lead track from 1975's Born to Run album.  Bruce told Rolling Stone that he wrote the song shortly after the end of the Vietnam War.  "There's quite a sense of dread and uncertainty about the future and who you were, where you were going, where the whole country was going," he explained, "so that found its way into the record."

You can check out the entire 100 Springsteen songs chosen for the list at RollingStone.com, but here are the top 20:

1. "Born to Run"
2. "Badlands"
3. "Thunder Road"
4. "Racing in the Street"
5. "The River"
6. "Backstreets"
7. "Atlantic City"
8. "Darkness on the Edge of Town"
9. "Born in the U.S.A."
10. "The Promised Land"
11. "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)"
12. "The Ghost of Tom Joad"
13. "Jungleland"
14. "Nebraska"
15. "4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)"
16. "Prove It All Night"
17. "Incident on 57th Street"
18. "State Trooper"
19. "The Promise"
20. "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out"

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Luke Bryan Postpones Thursday Night Concert Due to Winter Weather

Capitol NashvilleWinter weather has forced Luke Bryan to postpone his Thursday night show in Greensboro, NC to Monday, February 17. Tickets for the original date will be honored on Monday. Kelleigh Bannen steps in for opener Cole Swindell, who has a previously-scheduled engagement Monday night.

Luke's That's My Kind of Night tour continues through the weekend with shows in Wilkes-Barre, PA and Atlantic City, NJ.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Blake Shelton Expected to Appear on Shakira's Upcoming Album

Shakira via TwitterIt looks like Blake Shelton will be appearing on fellow The Voice coach Shakira's new, self-titled album, due out March 25. She recently tweeted a picture of herself in the studio with Blake. She later tweeted, "Now seriously Blake, thanks so much for this. This song is awesome!"

Blake isn't the only member of the Shelton household working with Shakira. His wife, Miranda Lambert, is serving as a mentor for Shakira's team on The Voice. The new season premieres Monday, February 24.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Report: Next Lady Gaga Music Video Will Feature "Real Housewives" Cast

Trae Patton/NBCLady Gaga is adding a dose of reality to her next music video.

Us Weekly reports the cast of the Bravo series The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills -- including Lisa Vanderpump, Brandi Glanville and siblings Kyle and Kim Richards -- will star in the clip. Andy Cohen, the host of the Bravo talk show Watch What Happens Live, will appear in it, too.

Gaga is a fan of The Real Housewives franchise and has appeared on Cohen's program before.

The report doesn't mention which ARTPOP song Gaga will be promoting with her new video. So far, she's only released one visual for an ARTPOP track: the lead single, "Applause."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Country Star Trivia 

Comstock/ThinkstockLuke Bryan joined which fraternity while attending Georgia Southern University? ANSWER: Sigma Chi.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

New Book Takes Fans "Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry"

Schmidt RelationsTaking the stage at the Grand Ole Opry is a big deal for any country star, but a new book, Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry, sheds light on what happens behind that famous Opry barn backdrop.

Opry member Garth Brooks says, "No offense at all to the people sitting in the seats, but the real show is backstage."

Opry star Dierks Bentley adds, "This book tells the story of one of my favorite places -- backstage at the Opry -- like never before. The Opry and its fans deserve this.”

In addition to Garth and Dierks' contributions, Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry also includes the story of Carrie Underwood's first meeting with legend Loretta Lynn. Vince Gill also shares his memories of visiting with late Opry icon Roy Acuff.

Other famous Opry visitors, including Kevin Costner, ABC News' Robin Roberts and Anderson Cooper, share their experiences backstage at the famous venue.

Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry will be released March 15 at Opry.com and Opry Nashville retail locations.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Craig Morgan Donating Fire Alarms to Families in Need During 2014 Tour

Black River EntertainmentCraig Morgan has partnered with fire safety products company Kidde to provide 5,000 smoke alarms to people in need at stops on his 2014 tour. Craig kicked off the alarm donation Tuesday at the fire department in his hometown of Dickson, TN. Fire departments in Craig's tour cities will distribute the donated alarms.

Craig, who is a former EMT, says, "I’ve seen the damage home fires can cause. Many home fire deaths are preventable, and I want to do what I can to help keep families safe."

You'll recall Craig used his EMT skills to rescue two children from a burning house near Dickson in 2011. For a list of Craig's tour dates, go to CraigMorgan.com.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

50th Anniversary Beatles Special Featuring McCartney & Starr Reunion to Air Again on Wednesday

CBSIf you missed the star-studded Beatles special that aired Sunday night on CBS because you were watching The Walking Dead or the Olympics, we've got good news for you: You'll be able to catch the event again tonight.

The Beatles: The Night That Changed America -- A Grammy Salute will re-air Wednesday night from 8:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. ET/PT.  Produced to mark the 50th anniversary of Fab Four's first appearance on the legendary Ed Sullivan Show variety program, the program includes a rare onstage reunion of the band's two surviving members -- Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr -- as well as tribute performances by Stevie Wonder, Jeff Lynne, Joe Walsh, Eurythmics, Dave Grohl, Alicia Keys, John Legend, Maroon 5 and Katy Perry, among other well-known artists.

Highlights of show include McCartney and Starr teaming up to sing "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band," "With a Little Help from My Friends" and "Hey Jude," and a version of the late George Harrison's "Something" by Lynne, Walsh and Harrison's son, Dhani.  Many of the evening's performers were accompanied by a backing group that featured Peter Frampton, Toto guitarist Steve Lukather, bassist/producer Don Was and journeyman session drummer Kenny Aronoff.

The special also includes an interview with McCartney and Starr conducted last week by David Letterman at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City, taped remembrances of the historic Sullivan Show performance by members of the program's staff and people who were in the audience that night, and presentations by Monty Python's Eric Idle and Hollywood stars like Johnny Depp, Sean Penn and Kate Beckinsale.

Unfortunately, ABC News Radio has been informed that there currently are no plans to release any of the special's once-in-a-lifetime performances as digital downloads.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Marsha Ambrosius Announces Dates for Friends & Lovers Tour 

Sony Music EntertainmentMarsha Ambrosius is getting ready to hit the road. The singer has announced the dates for her upcoming North American outing, dubbed the Friends & Lovers Tour.

The 25-city trek, which is named after her forthcoming sophomore album, will begin March 16 in New York City at B.B. Kings and it's scheduled to wrap up  at the Hard Rock Cafe in Las Vegas on May 10. Tickets are available on Ticketmaster.com.

Aside from revealing her tour dates, the singer also hinted that new music will be on the way. "Friends & Lovers: you didn't think I was just gonna go on tour and not give you something! Stay tuned! I WILL NOT WAIT!" she recently tweeted.

Here's the dates for the Friends & Lovers Tour:

3/16 -- New York, NY,  B.B. Kings
3/18 -- Cambridge, MA, Regatta Bar
3/19 -- Philadelphia, PA, TLA
3/21 -- Baltimore, MD, Soundstage
3/22, -- Pennsaukne, NJ, Savoy Night Club
3/23 -- Washington, D.C., Howard Theater
3/27 -- Detroit, MI, St Andrews Hall
3/28 -- Chiago, IL, The Shrine
3/30 -- Minneapolis, MN, Fine Line
4/ 2 -- Nashville, TN, Mercy Lounge
4/3 -- Raleigh, NC, Lincoln Theater
4/4 -- Norfolk, VA, The Norva
4/5 -- Charlotte, NC, McGlohon Theater
4/6 -- Atlanta, GA, Center Stage
4/11 -- Little Rock, AK, Janitas
4/12 -- Houston, TX, Minure Maid
4/13 -- Dallas, TX, House of Blues
4/17 -- Los Angeles, CA, Trubadour
4/18 -- San Diego, CA, House of Blues
4/19 -- Long Beach, CA, Gaslamp
4/24 -- Oakland, CA, Yoshis
4/25 -- Sacramento, CA, Harlows
5/2 -- San Francisco, CA, Yoshi's
5/3 -- San Francisco, CA, Yoshi's
5/10 -- Las Vegas, NV, Hard Rock Cafe

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Tool Announces New Tour Dates

Tim CadienteTool has added six dates onto its new tour. The band had previously scheduled five shows, set to kick off on March 4 in Spokane, WA, and the newly added half dozen dates will have the band on the road until March 27, when they'll play the U.S. Airways Center in Phoenix, AZ.

In addition to standard tickets, the group will be offering up a VIP package that includes a VIP ticket, access to watch the group’s sound check before the show, a Q&A session with guitarist Adam Jones, and a gift bag of exclusive merchandise.

Standard tickets for these new shows go on sale Friday, February 14 at 10 a.m. local time except for the Houston show, which opens for sales at noon local time that same day. The VIP packages are available one day earlier on February 13 at 10 a.m. PT and will be available on Thursday to Tool’s fan club members at ToolArmy.com starting at 10 a.m. PT.

The new Tool tour dates are as follows:

3/14 -- Fresno, CA, Selland Arena
3/15 -- Las Vegas, NV, Planet Hollywood
3/16 -- San Diego, CA, Valley View Arena
3/24 -- Austin, TX, Cedar Park Center
3/25 -- Houston, TX, Toyota Center
3/27 -- Phoenix, AZ, US Airways Center

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Taylor Swift Gets the Chop While Friends Watch: "Short Hair Don't Care!"

Image Courtesy Taylor Swift via InstagramHow did Taylor Swift celebrate the end of her RED tour on Tuesday?  By cutting off her long locks, in front of dozens of people.

In a video posted on Instagram, we see, from Taylor's point of view, a big circle of people crowded around her. "This is how many people are watching me get a haircut right now," we hear her say, as they laugh and cheer. "We don't do anything without an audience, do we?"

Taylor then followed that up with an Instagram photo showing her, with her hair now a shoulder-length bob -- hugging British singer Ellie Goulding.  "London, I could never thank you enough," Taylor writes.  "See you next time! PS: short hair, don't care. (!!!)"

While not exactly "short," the new 'do is a change from the long style Taylor displayed at the Grammys, when she did some impressive hair-whipping while performing her song "All Too Well."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

Wednesday
Feb122014

Billy Ray Cyrus Releases Hip-Hop Sequel to "Achy Breaky Heart"

Buck 22 MusicMiley Cyrus has done a lot of crazy things in the past year, but now her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, appears to be giving her a run for the money, judging by what he unleashed upon the Internet Tuesday.

Billy Ray debuted an unusual sequel to his 1992 smash hit “Achy Breaky Heart.” He collaborated with rapper Buck 22 on "Achy Breaky 2," which puts a hip-hop/electronic spin on the original.

The accompanying music video begins with a fake news report from Larry King, in which he describes a UFO in the skies. The next thing you know, Billy Ray and Buck 22 -- the son of Dionne Warwick -- are performing alongside twerking aliens.

Billy Ray tweeted the clip on Tuesday evening, writing, "Let er go boys!"

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

U2 Releases Full Video for "Invisible"

Universal/Island RecordsU2 on Tuesday released the music video for their new song, “Invisible.” It’s basically an extended version of their Super Bowl commercial, which featured the tune and raised awareness of a charitable effort involving Bono’s (RED) charity.

As previously reported, Bank of America donated $1 for every free download of "Invisible" during a 36-hour period to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The initiative raised more than three million dollars.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Mary J. Blige Performs at White House State Dinner

Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty ImagesMary J. Blige performed at a White House state dinner Tuesday night in honor of French President Francois Hollande.

The dinner was held in a huge heated tent on the South Lawn of the White House.

The nine-time Grammy winner provided the after-dinner entertainment, kicking off her set with the song "Ain't Nobody."

Blige is reportedly an Obama family favorite.  She sang “One” in honor of President Obama at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, and was reportedly a guest at the first lady’s 50th birthday bash last month.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Idina Menzel to Sing "Let It Go" at Oscars; "Frozen" Composers Talk About the Song's Genesis

Walt Disney PicturesThe soundtrack from the hit Disney animated film Frozen has topped the charts for four weeks, even booting Beyonce from the top spot at one point.  The movie's big number, "Let It Go," is up for an Academy Award, and Idina Menzel, who provides the voice of Elsa, one of Frozen's two heroines, has now been confirmed to sing the number at the Oscar ceremony March 2 on ABC.  But "Let It Go" isn't just a big Disney music number. As its composers reveal, that one song set the pace for the entire film.

Bobby and Kristen Lopez, the married couple who composed all the songs for Frozen, tell ABC News Radio that the movie was two years in the making, and initially, the filmmakers couldn't decide if the character of Elsa -- a princess whose causes chaos when she loses control over her secret power to create ice and snow -- should be a villain or a heroine.  But as soon as the Lopezes wrote "Let It Go," it all became clear.

"We sat down to write it and realized...what it must feel like to have kept a secret and had that fear and shame and then it comes out," recalls Kristen. "The feeling of remorse and yet release that led to finding the hook 'Let It Go' just sort of opened this world into Elsa." As a result, Kristen says, the movie's writer-turned-director, Jennifer Lee, "rewrote the whole movie around it once she heard the song."

Kristen says she feels that the song "Let It Go" is also an anthem for the pressures that women feel in our society these days. "You have to work so hard sometimes to be nice and perfect, and connect, and be a perfect mom and a perfect wife," she tells ABC News Radio. "And [be] thin, and do good for your community and have a career and be strong."

"Sometimes, you just have to slam the door on all those expectations and 'shoulds' and just kind of go inside and let it flow and forget about what people want from you," she adds.

As for Idina Menzel, a Broadway star and actress who played Rachel's biological mom on Glee, the couple always knew that they were writing the song for her to sing, so they tailored it specifically for her.  "We've known her voice really well," says Bobby. "We did our best to try and make a song...fit to that performer. I mean, Idina's got this delicate fragile range down low, and so that's where we set the beginning. And the choruses are up in the stratosphere, where she's somehow got this amazing, amazing power that just keeps getting stronger the higher she goes up."

The "Let It Go" portion of the movie uses eye-popping 3D special effects to show Elsa, alone on a mountaintop, saying goodbye to her old life and owning her power by creating a palace made of ice and snow. The Lopezes says they were bowled over when they finally saw the finished sequence, with Idina's powerful vocal attached.

"Once the thing was finished and it was all lit and all the magical effects and the snow effects...it was just magical." raves Bobby, while Kristen adds, "We didn't see it until maybe a week before the movie opened, but it was so stunning."

Also stunning was the fact that their soundtrack managed to unseat Beyonce's "surprise album" from the top of the Billboard album chart. "Yeah, that's inconceivable!" laughs Bobby when reminded of the feat. "That's crazy!" agrees Kristen. "But I could not rock the outfit that she wore at the Grammys. That was impressive!"

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Nashville Notes

Bure/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockCole Swindell's self-titled debut album is now streaming at iTunes. It will be available for purchase on February 18.

The Beatles: The Night That Changed America -- A Grammy Salute special will be re-aired on CBS Wednesday night at 8:30 p.m. ET. Keith Urban and Brad Paisley perform on the show.

Taylor Swift made Ask Men's Top 99 Most Desirable Women list for 2014 at #30.  Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke ranks #1.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Luke Bryan Shoots Down Rumors He's Getting into the Restaurant Business

CMALuke Bryan often wears a black hat with an "E3" logo on it, and he was on hand for the opening of the E3 Chop House in Steamboat Springs, CO a few months back. So, does this mean Luke is now in the restaurant business? Not so fast, says the "Drink a Beer" singer.

One of Luke partners in the Buck Commander enterprise, Washington Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche, recently opened the E3 Chop House with his brothers. Luke and his other Buck Commander partners -- Jason Aldean and Duck Dynasty's Willie Robertson -- aren't involved in the E3 Chop House, but Luke encourages his fans to go check it out.

Says Luke, "It's a great steakhouse.  Maybe down the road Adam will let me buy into some of the franchise, but I'm not in the restaurant business."

E3 is also the name of Adam LaRoche's ranch in Kansas. That term stands for an error committed by a first baseman during a game.

Luke explains, "That's just his sense of humor that we would name his ranch, error on the first baseman."

Luke starting wearing the E3 hat because wearing a particular baseball team's hat might get him in trouble onstage.

"If I was in St. Louis with a Braves hat on, then St. Louis fans would be shooting me the bird," Luke says. "So, nobody can call me out on an E3, 'cause they don't know what it is, until now."

Luke continues his That's My Kind of Night tour Thursday night in Greensboro, NC.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Frankie Ballard and His Fans Agree: It's a "Helluva Life"

Warner Music NashvilleFrankie Ballard's latest hit, "Helluva Life," has struck a chord with listeners on its journey towards the top of the country chart. Hearing stories about the song's impact on fans has only confirmed what Frankie felt when he recorded the song.

He tells ABC News Radio, "I did have that feeling, but you never know until people really get a chance to hear it, and I'm so thankful to country radio for giving people a chance to hear it, and now that they have a few times, I think people are making it their own."

"Helluva Life" encourages people to appreciate both the good and bad things that make life such a rich experience.

Says Frankie, "They're taking it and going, 'This is my journey, and it looks like this. It might be different from yours. I've had a couple curveballs along the way, a couple of good things here and there. I'm just able to kinda chalk it all up and say, you know what? Yeah, he's right. It is a hell of a life.'"

"Helluva Life" is the lead single from Frankie's brand-new album, Sunshine & Whiskey, available now. Look for him to perform on FOX News' FOX & Friends Thursday.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb122014

Queen's Greatest Hits Becomes First Album to Sell 6 Million Copies in the UK

Universal Music UKWhile Queen is hugely successful all over the world, it's no secret that the legendary British rock group is particularly popular in its home country.  Now, the band's 1981 Greatest Hits compilation has become the first album ever sell 6 million copies in the U.K., according to the Official Charts Company.

The 17-track collection features such enduring tunes as "Bohemian Rhapsody," "Another One Bites the Dust," "You're My Best Friend," "Crazy Little Thing Called Love," "Somebody to Love," "We Will Rock You" and "We Are the Champions."

In response to the achievement, Queen guitarist Brian May has recorded a video message in which he says, "Great news, amazing news from the Official Charts Company!...I just want to say thanks to everyone who has supported us through the years, we hope to continue to serve you."

Drummer Roger Taylor adds about the milestone, "Wonderful.  Who would have thought it!  And all due to the Great British public.  Thank you.  A great honor!"

Following Queen's Greatest Hits on the list of best-selling albums in the U.K. are ABBA's Gold compilation at #2 with 5.1 million copies sold, The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band at #3 also with 5.1 million, Adele's 21 with 4.7 million and Oasis' What's the Story Morning Glory with 4.6 million.  Queen also holds the #10 spot on the list with its 1991 Greatest Hits II retrospective, which has sold 3.9 million copies.

Meanwhile, Queen's Greatest Hits also is the band's most-successful album in the U.S., having sold more than 8 million copies to date, according to the Recording Industry Association of America.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio