Show Will Air Friday Nights Beginning This Fall
The Two Stars Prep For Their “Brothers of the Sun” Outing
Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw staged their first joint rehearsal Thursday for their upcoming tour, “Brothers of the Sun,” and released this photo of the proceedings. During the more than three-hour rehearsal, the two friends worked out arrangements for songs on the tour—which kicks off June 2—including their current hit single, “Feel Like A Rock Star.”
“Yesterday’s rehearsal with Tim and I and our bands was as electric and exciting as we anticipated,” said Chesney in a press release accompanying the photo. “It’s been a long time since we’ve played on stage together and the chemistry and excitement is just so natural. It’s going to be a dream come true to have our years of friendship come together on stage for what will be one unpredictable, loud, hell of a summer, and I can’t wait.”
“Brothers of the Sun” will be the first time Chesney and McGraw have toured together in more than a decade. The tour will play more than 20 stadiums across the country, and more than 700,000 tickets have already been sold. The outing also features opening acts Grace Potter & The Nocturnals and Jake Owen.
Funny Video Clip Takes Some Unexpected Turns
During her appearance on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” last night, Carrie Underwood and Kimmel unveiled an hilarious new music video they filmed together for a song titled “Before You Freak,” a parody of Underwood’s 2006 No. 1 hit “Before He Cheats.”
In the video, Underwood takes a bat to a red truck sporting a giant mustache (the truck, not Carrie), while Kimmel badly sings lyrics like “Some girl I never met before went all Britney Spears on my 4x4.”
Before it’s over, there’s damage not just to the truck, but also to a Hello Kitty toy, a bobble head Al Gore and a poster of actor James Van Der Beek as the song goes anywhere it needs to for a rhyme. Watch it here.
Both Singers Have New Albums Due Later This Year
Kenny Rogers announced this week he has returned to the record label where he got his start, Warner Bros., as first tipped in One Country last month. Rogers first signed with the label in 1967 as part of the band First Edition, and recorded there for several decades before moving on to other labels, most recently Capitol Records. Rogers’ new album for Warner Bros. is being produced by Dann Huff, and is scheduled for release later this year.
“I’m looking forward to returning home to Warner Bros. Records after all these years,” commented Rogers on his new deal. “Our history together, combined with the incredible team that’s in place now, provides the catalyst for a great new relationship going forward.”
Rogers celebrated his 50th year in show business in 2008. In that time, he’s sold more than 120 million records worldwide and recorded more than 65 albums.
In other signing news, Staind frontman Aaron Lewis, who recently launched a country career, has inked a deal with Blaster Entertainment, home to Neal McCoy and Hank Williams, Jr. Lewis launched his country career on Nashville-based R&J Records and his debut country EP, “Town Line,” debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Country Albums chart last year. His first country single, “Country Boy” has been certified gold. His full-length album is set for release this summer, as previously reported in March.
“Country music was the first music I ever listened to,” Lewis says in a press release. “I sat on my grandfather’s lap listening to his country records and I grew to love them. The country audience has been so accepting of my music and I’m excited about working with the Blaster team to put out the new record this summer.”
Country Legend Introduced The Actress At The Opry Tonight
At the Grand Ole Opry Thursday night, Loretta Lynn revealed plans for a Broadway musical adaptation of her life story, “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” and brought out the production’s future star—film/TV actress and musician Zooey Deschanel—to sing its title song with her onstage, according to The Tennessean and social media posts by audience members in attendance.
“I have a friend here tonight,” Lynn, told the crowd. “There’s a little girl backstage that’s going to do the play of ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter,’ and I can think she can sing her…” she paused. “... self to death! (laughs) I didn’t say it! But she’s great,” the Tennessean reports.
“This is a great honor for me,” Deschanel said. “This is my hero.”
The two women then traded off verses on “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” and sang its final chorus together.
Plans for a stage adaptation are still in the beginning stages, with no creative team attached or workshop dates announced, reports the Tennessean. The producers — Fox Theatricals and Scott Sanders Productions — have been behind such Broadway hits as “Legally Blonde,” “The Color Purple,” “Red” and “Thoroughly Modern Millie.”
Deschanel, 32, is the star and a producer of the Fox comedy “New Girl” and has starred in such films as “Elf” and “(500) Days of Summer.”
(photo: Dipti Vaidya/The Tennessean)
Attorneys Engage In War Of Words Over Depositions
A judge hearing several lawsuits filed after last summer’s Indiana State Fair stage collapse declined Wednesday to release depositions from the members of country duo Sugarland and told a plaintiff’s attorney he shouldn’t have publicized videotaped portions of the lead singer Jennifer Nettles’ testimony last month, reports the Associated Press. The judge also told attorneys he’ll rule by early next week on a schedule for moving those suits toward resolution, and may also expand an existing gag order.
Last August, just before Sugarland was scheduled to take the stage at the fair, stage rigging collapsed during a storm, killing seven people and injuring nearly 60 others. Fair officials claim they had a concert promoter ask the band twice to delay the concert because of concerns about severe weather, but were rebuffed.
Nettles said in the deposition she was told about 90 minutes before the scheduled start of the concert that weather was coming but wasn’t specifically told it was a severe thunderstorm, AP reports. She also said she relies on others to alert her about weather.
An attorney representing several of the victims released videotaped portions Nettles’ deposition in response to what he called inaccurate statements by the band’s publicists.
That attorney asked the court Wednesday for permission to release full transcripts of Nettles’ deposition and also that of band mate Kristian Bush. He said those documents would help his clients counter what he called misleading statements by Sugarland’s “publicity machine.”
An attorney for the band countered that the release of the video testimony by the plaintiffs’ attorney was a “stunt” designed to cast the band in a bad light and suggest Sugarland had somehow caused the tragedy.
But the judge said he would not allow the release of Nettles’ and Bush’s depositions because they’re covered by a gag order he approved in January barring the release of certain evidence. The judge said that he’ll rule early next week on whether to expand the scope of that protective order, according to AP’s report. The judge said he will also rule early next week on a proposed agreement by several parties to the lawsuits that calls for them to go to trial after April 1, 2014 and sets other dates for the discovery process and mediation involving the suits.
Dramatic Photo Shows The Damage
Bucky Covington’s tour bus was involved in an accident Thursday on I-65 in Birmingham, Ala., while out for a run of tour dates. The singer had already been dropped off for an earlier appearance that day and was not on board at the time of the accident. Several other passengers were taken to a nearby hospital, but none are thought to have sustained serious injuries.
Tonight's show went on as scheduled, as will this weekend's dates in Germantown, Ill. (5/11) and Kenosha, Wis. (5/12).
As you can see from this dramatic photo, the bus is a total loss, meaning Covington will likely be in the market for a replacement soon.
Singer Performs for U.S. Troops At Small, Special Ops Sites
Darryl Worley recently returned from his tenth trip overseas to entertain U.S. troops, with this trip taking him throughout Afghanistan and Kuwait. Since 2002, Worley has visited many forward operating bases (FOBs), but for this tour, organized by Armed Forces Entertainment and Stars For Stripes, he wanted to visit the tiny and elite special ops sites where military serving on the front lines rarely receive celebrity visits.
“I’ve had the opportunity to travel to some of the small FOBs on previous tours and saw the impact our visits made on the men and women in those sites,” says Worley in a press release. “It has been a dream of mine for several years to do an entire tour focused on the remote sites where our special ops forces are located. Those guys are our unsung heroes, facing the most dangerous situations and not asking for any recognition for their service. To be able to personally visit and thank that segment of our nation’s heroes was truly a special blessing.
“These tours always touch my heart and feed my soul,” adds Worley. “I feel so incredibly inspired, honored and humbled at the same time.”
The tour began in the Western part of Afghanistan with a visit to the Marine Special Operations Forces, where Worley entertained a handful of Marines at the site. He continued on to a second stop with the Navy Seals at a Village Stability Platform (VSP), where our military lives in an Afghan village with the locals. Their final day in Afghanistan took him to the Army Special Operations Forces, where the audience consisted of an equal number of Army Special Ops and Afghan Special Ops troops.
Worley’s closing performance of the tour took place in Kuwait at Ali Al Salem Air Base, referred to as “The Rock,” where he is pictured above with his guitarist Jeff “Soir” Jared. Following his 90-minute performance for more than 500 servicemen and women, Worley signed autographs and took photos with everyone before departing home to the States.
Now that Worley is back on U.S. soil, he will resume his regular touring schedule, which includes performances next month during the 2012 CMA Music Festival in Nashville and BamaJam 2012, where he’ll host the three-day festival's opening night on June 14.
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