All posts in February 2014

Darius Rucker Visits the Town That Started It All

South Carolina welcomed native son Darius Rucker for a stop in Columbia on his True Believers tour.

Top 10 Country Tweets of the Week

Top 10 Country Tweets of the Week

Country music stars sure love Twitter! This week, Blake Shelton and Usher have a moment while watching The Voice, Brad Paisley plays Nashville, Taylor Swift has a beach day with Lorde, and Cole Swindell and Thomas Rhett might be living out Dierks Bentley’s “Drunk On A Plane” song from his new album. Plus, Little Big Town encounters King George! Here are our picks for this week’s Top 10 Country Tweets Of The Week:

Little Big Town with George Strait

Photo courtesy of

Little Big Town – LittleBigTown: Freaking out. @GeorgeStrait #cowboyridesaway

Usher – Usher: Maybe we should rotate your chairs @adamlevine & @blakeshelton so you can be closer together #Meant2Be

Blake Shelton – BlakeShelton: .@usher I put that request in 5 seasons ago… I think they separate us for a reason #CantSeparateLove #SexiestManAlive


Carrie Underwood & Danielle Bradbery

Photo courtesy of

Danielle Bradbery – DBradbery: There are moments that you’ll embrace for the rest of your life and this was one of them, such a blessing 

Brad Paisley – BradPaisley: Cannot wait to play Nashville TN tomorrow. Big fan of the ABC show. Always wanted to visit there. I hope it’s just like on TV.

Carrie UnderwoodCarrieUnderwood: That @mikefisher1212 is a pretty great guy…

Lorde with Taylor Swift

Photo courtesy of

Taylor Swift – TaylorSwift13: Bare feet in the sand on a Saturday..

Jake OwenJakeOwen: Just had a blast driving the pace car to start the Daytona 500. Being a FL boy… That sealed the deal for me. Too damn cool.

Dierks Bentley – DierksBentley: funny.. @ladyantebellum charles kelley’s wife cassie texted my wife about her favorite songs on #riser. i haven’t heard anything from him

Thomas Rhett and Cole Swindell

Photo courtesy of

Cole Swindell - ColeSwindell: On a plane with TR @thomasrhett… We have shows together the next 2 nights! We’re about to pull a Dierks Bentley… If you know what I mean


Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum Announces Miranda Lambert Exhibit

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum Announces Miranda Lambert Exhibit

Miranda Lambert photo courtesy of Sony Music Nashville.

The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum will explore a year in the life of Miranda Lambert with a new exhibition. Miranda Lambert: Backstage Access will open May 16, 2014 and run through November 9, 2014. It will feature gowns, stage costumes, awards and much more with Miranda’s Tweets providing the narrative of her life throughout 2013.

“The Country Music Hall of Fame is a place to cherish what country music is all about,” said Miranda. “And I’m so honored to have an exhibit in this treasured hall.”

“Miranda Lambert is one of contemporary music’s most popular and acclaimed artists, and for good reason,” said Museum Director Kyle Young. “She’s a dynamic performer; an emotive and powerful vocalist whose voice is equally at home with lyrics tough or tender; and a songwriter with a deft touch for feeling and place. 

“Her numerous hits, from empowering anthems like ‘Gunpowder and Lead’ to introspective set pieces like ‘The House That Built Me,’ are rich contributions to country music’s storytelling tradition,” he continued. “We are looking forward to taking our visitors behind the scenes with Miranda during her amazing successes in 2013.”

Miranda is the reigning four-time CMA and reigning four-time ACM Female Vocalist of the Year. Her last album, Four The Record, made history when it debuted atop Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart, making her the first country artist in the 47-year history of the chart to have each of her first four albums debut at No. 1. Miranda recently released her new single, “Automatic,” the lead track from her upcoming fifth studio album.

Miranda has also designed a shoe line that is available at DSW and other retailers across the country. She dedicates much of her time to her MuttNation Foundation which has raised more than $1.5 million to aid organizations whose purpose is to provide a better life for animals.  She owns two lifestyle boutiques, named the Pink Pistol, located in her hometowns of Lindale, TX, and Tishomingo, OK.

For more information on the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, visit


CMA to Announce LP Field Performers for 2014 CMA Music Festival Via Social Media March 3

CMA to Announce LP Field Performers for 2014 CMA Music Festival Via Social Media March 3

CMA Music Festival at LP Field. Photo by Bennett Farkas, courtesy of the CMA.

CMA will utilize social networks to announce LP Field performers for the 2014 CMA Music Festival starting Monday, March 3. Every weekday from March 3-18, CMA will post clues on its social media platforms allowing fans to speculate and anticipate who will be performing during the Nightly Concerts at LP Field.

A full announcement of the LP Field lineup will follow the #CMAFestGuess social media campaign on Wednesday, March 19.

“We have a very strong, dedicated, and loyal social media audience,” said CMA Chief Executive Officer Sarah Trahern. “They are the ones who are constantly engaged with the Festival, so of course we want to let them be the first to find out who will be performing this year. Their passion for the music makes CMA Music Festival the world’s premier Country Music festival.”

A mock movie trailer announcing the campaign will be released on CMA’s social pages Sunday during the Oscars ceremony. “As the Oscars will be one of the largest nights of the year for social engagement, we felt it the perfect time to announce this innovative social campaign to our fans,” said Damon Whiteside, CMA Senior Vice President of Marketing and Partnerships.

Followers can use #CMAFestGuess to track the virtual clues. With more than two million followers across CMA’s social media platforms, Country Music fans are proving that they are digitally engaged and Internet savvy. The 2013 CMA Awards, which aired Nov. 6 on ABC, was the most tweeted-about television event of that week.

“We know Country fans are hungry to engage with their favorite artists through social media, and this campaign will allow them to be a part of the conversation with artists and other fans,” said Whiteside. “This Festival is centered around the fan experience, and this is generating the excitement and anticipation for fans before they even get to Nashville.”

Since its inception in 1972, CMA Music Festival has been famous for fostering a unique connection between Country Music fans and artists. CMA is now using social media platforms to further that bond and tradition. Clues will be revealed each weekday via Facebook (, Twitter (@CountryMusic), and Instagram (@CMA). Subscribers to CMA Exclusive, CMA’s fan newsletter, will be among the first to see the list of performers.

The 2014 CMA Music Festival will be held Thursday through Sunday, June 5–8, in downtown Nashville.

While tickets to the Nightly Concerts at LP Field are sold out, there are numerous other entertainment and music stages, special events, and activities throughout downtown Nashville to enjoy during CMA Music Festival.

CMA Music Festival’s newest attraction, AT&T U-verse Fan Fair X at the Music City Center, features artist performances, celebrity Q&A sessions, and more. Fans can play paparazzi and snap photos of the stars, shop the Fan Fair X Marketplace, and more. Fan Fair X tickets are $10 a day or $25 for four days. Children 8 and under are admitted free. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster at or the CMA Music Festival Box Office by calling 1-800-CMA-FEST (262-3378) (price includes handling fees). Visit for details.


Josh Turner to Release “Man Stuff” Book April 29

Josh Turner to Release "Man Stuff" Book April 29

Photo courtesy of Essential Broadcast Media.

Josh Turner will release his first book, Man Stuff: Thoughts on Faith, Family, and Fatherhood, on April 29. Since signing his record deal in 2003, he has sold more than five million albums, had four No. 1 songs, played numerous sold-out show and was one of the youngest artists ever inducted into the Grand Ole Opry. Throughout his successful but demanding career, he has kept his life focused on his Christians faith and his family.

“I was raised in a strong Christian family in a tight-knit community in rural South Carolina,” he writes in the book’s introduction. “I was taught essential life lessons, like the value of a dollar, what hard work feels like, and how important an education is. I was taught why being thoughtful, respectful, and considerate of others makes life more fulfilling, and why trusting God with your life’s decisions is wise. If all that sounds a little old-fashioned, well, that’s because it is. And I’m okay with that.

“In this book you’ll learn a little bit more about how God has shaped and continues to shape me,” he continues. “You’ll also learn about my wife, my boys, and the family I grew up in. I hope you see that the everyday small things in this life really do add up to matter a great deal in the long run. And I hope you’ll smile—even laugh—and gain a little wisdom along the way. Maybe even a lot.”

Ducky Dynasty’s Jase Robertson wrote the book’s forward. Josh sang a duet with Jase’s wife, Missy, on the song “Why I Love Christmas,” on the Robertson family’s Duck The Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas, last year.


Dierks Bentley Can Hear His Dad in Riser

Four songs on Dierks Bentley's new album Riser make him think about his late father.

Miranda Lambert Sparkles Her Way Into New Exhibit

No, she's not being inducted -- not yet, anyway -- but Miranda Lambert is about to sparkle and sashay her way into the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in a brand new exhibit.

Doobie Brothers Tribute Album to Feature Brad Paisley, Toby Keith

Brad Paisley, Sara Evans, Chris Young, Toby Keith and the Zac Brown Band will be contributing tracks to a new album paying tribute to the Doobie Brothers.

Top 20 Joins Darius Rucker on Tour – & the Golf Course!

Top 20 Joins Darius Rucker on Tour -- & the Golf Course!

Darius Rucker gives Nan Kelley a golf lesson on Top 20 Country Countdown. Photo courtesy of Great American Country staff.

Top 20 Country Countdown and host Nan Kelley are heading to Charleston, South Carolina to meet up with Darius Rucker on his True Believers Tour. Nan will catch up with Darius in his hometown as well as chat with Darius’ special guests Eli Young Band and David Nail to talk about the tour, their music and more! Plus, Nan and Darius will hit the links where Darius, a golf enthusiast, will give Nan a few tips.

Top 20 Photo Gallery »

Last week Carrie Underwood returned to No. 1 with her “Blown Away Medley.” Will she remain in the top spot this week with Katie Armiger and  Keith Urban aiming for No. 1? Tune in tonight at 8/7c to find out! Check the full schedule »

Want to re-watch some of your favorite interviews? Head over to our Top 20 section for videos and photos. You can also catch Top 20 Extras, cast your votes, and take a look at the current chart to see where your favorite videos land.


Martina McBride to Release First Cookbook in October

Martina McBride

Martina McBride photo courtesy of Republic Nashville.

Fans only need to follow Martina McBride on her social media pages to know she loves to cook and entertain when she’s not on the road. To continue sharing her love of recipes and hosting dinner parties, she has partnered with William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishing, to release her first cookbook, Around The Table, on October 7, 2014.

“I have a passion for food and entertaining,” Martina said. “I’m so excited to be putting everything I love onto the pages of my new book.”

In Around The Table, Martina will share her party ideas for all seasons. The book will include vivid photography, recipes, tips and tricks, menu planning advice, and décor inspiration as well as a few of Martina’s favorite memories. Some of the party ideas Martina includes in the book are a Red, White, and Blue Backyard Cookout, a Retro Valentine’s Day Supper Club and a night of Mistletoe and Martinis.

Looking for some new recipe ideas? Why not check out our food blog series? Krystal Keith In The Kitchen features favorite family recipes from Krystal Keith, a rising country star who happens to be the daughter of Toby Keith; while One Pan Nan comes from our very own Nan Kelley, who loves to cook and entertain when she’s not covering the latest country music events for Top 20 Country Countdown.