Music News

Thomas Rhett Takes "Die a Happy Man" to "Tonight" and "Today"

ABC/Image Group LAWith six weeks at number one on the country chart, a cover by rapper Nelly and some serious crossover potential on pop radio, Thomas Rhett's monster hit, “Die a Happy Man,” is about to get another round of major mainstream exposure.He’ll perform the song, written about his wife Lauren, Tuesday on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35 p.m. ET on NBC, and then he’ll get up early Wednesday morning to do it all over again on the Today show, starting at 7 a.m.The career-defining track continues to sit atop Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart for the 13th week, having already been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. Thomas is following up his fifth number one in a row with “T-Shirt,” from his Tangled Up album.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Dierks Bentley Teams Up with the Cast of "Nashville" to Raise Money for the Afri

ABCDierks Bentley is teaming up with the cast of ABC’s Nashville to raise money for the African Children’s Choir, with a show at Music City’s historic Ryman Auditorium next Monday. Though the group of youngsters is not terribly well known, they’ve been nominated for a Grammy and their good work is even more impressive. The program has helped put more than 52,000 kids through school in the past three decades and has helped more than 100,000 struggling with poverty in Kenya, Uganda, Sudan, Rwanda, Ghana, Nigeria and South Africa.The list of performers reads like a cast list from the hit ABC show-- Connie Britton, Charles Esten, Jonathan Jackson, Clare Bowen, Sam Palladio, Chaley Rose, Will Chase, Aubrey Peeples, Chris Carmack and Mark Collie. Perhaps some of their devotion to the cause is derived from the fact that the show’s star, Connie Britton, has an adopted son from Ethiopia. She’ll host the evening.Tickets for the show, which range from about $40 to $120, are available online.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

An Ailing Chase Bryant Agonizes over Missing Dates, Releases New "Little Bit of

Broken Bow RecordsFor the past two weekends, newcomer Chase Bryant has been unable to go on stage, and he’s not happy about it at all.First, he missed his show with Kip Moore in Cincinnati on January 30, ending up in the emergency room just a few days later on Monday. By Thursday, he was ready to give it another shot, but by Friday, he had to admit he wasn’t well enough to continue, writing his fans a long, thoughtful letter of apology on Twitter. Now his doctors have placed him on partial vocal rest for the next week.    While Chase may be sidelined, fans can enjoy the new video for his top-15 hit “Little Bit of You." Shot mainly at his concerts across the U.S., the new clip captures Chase’s eagerness to get back home to his girlfriend as his work takes him away.“When I wrote this song I was dating a girl 3,000 miles away," he recalls. "I always had the feeling that I’d do anything in my power to get there. Making this video I think we establish that story but also captured this life I live in many different venues from the road. This is the real me.”You can check out the new video for “Little Bit of You” on YouTube now.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Luke Bryan to Salute Lionel Richie on Grammy Telecast

Joseph LlanesPop and soul legend Lionel Richie will be honored on this year's Grammy telecast by an all-genre assortment of artists including Luke Bryan, pop stars Meghan Trainor and Demi Lovato, and R&B star John Legend.Lionel is this year's MusiCares Person of the Year; a couple days before the Grammys, he'll be the guest of honor at an all-star tribute.  The segement on Monday night's Grammys will be a smaller version of that.  The songs Luke, Demi, Meghan and John will sing will span Lionel's career, from his time with the Commodores to his huge solo hits.  Lionel himself will also take the stage for a group version of one of his classics.Luke's presence in the tribute isn't unusual, considering that Lionel's best-selling 2012 album Tuskegee featured him teaming with a slew of major country stars, including Kenny Chesney, Little Big Town, Blake Shelton, Shania Twain and Jason Aldean.This will mark the first time Luke, Demi and Meghan will perform on the Grammy stage.  John already has nine Grammys under his belt and is up for four additional ones this year.The Grammy Awards, hosted by LL Cool J, air Monday night on CBS starting at 8 p.m. ET.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Why "Girl Crush" Could Mean There's More Edgy Material on the Way from Little Bi

ABC/Image Group LAThough Little Big Town’s hit “Girl Crush” initially generated some controversy, lately all it’s been doing is bringing home awards. Last year, the song some mistakenly thought centered around a same-sex relationship took home CMA trophies for both Single and Song of the Year, and no doubt helped the band bring home another Vocal Group honor. Next week, it’s up for all-genre Song of the Year at the Grammys, in addition to vying for Best Country Song and Best Country Duo/Group Performance.LBT is also a contender for Best Country Album for Pain Killer, and they’re beginning to turn their attention to its follow-up.“We’re still kinda new into that part of the process, but we’re getting some amazing songs already,” Phillip Sweet says. “I think it’s just an incredible pool of amazing writers out there…I think the songs are gonna get better and more focused maybe -- more focused for Little Big Town.”Karen Fairchild believes “Girl Crush” has also had another unintended consequence for the band -- one that just may show up on the next album. She says the groundbreaking track has made songwriters realize Little Big Town won’t shy away from cutting edgy material.“They know now that we are not afraid to do things. We were writing this past weekend, and the guys we were writing with were just really inspired by the fact that there weren’t any boundaries really in the room. And that’s the way we’ve been trying to work for the last few years. It’s more satisfying for everyone.”As Little Big Town works on their next record, they might want to go ahead and clear some shelf space for a few more trophies. “Girl Crush” is also nominated for Single Record and Video of the Year at April’s Academy of Country Music Awards.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Kristian Bush Feels Like a "Rocket Sitting on a Launchpad" as He Works on Second

Streamsound RecordsKristian Bush is currently in the studio working on his debut album for Wheelhouse Records, having recently signed with BBR Music Group -- the home of Jason Aldean, Dustin Lynch, Randy Houser and more. From the sound of things, the male half of Sugarland couldn’t be more excited.“As both a recording artist and a songwriter, I am honored to be a part of the… family,” he says. “I’m in love with making music, and I’m humbled every day that I get to do this job. My train runs on believers… There’s no telling what can happen when like-minded people get together, so to be surrounded by this team and given this opportunity makes me feel like a rocket sitting on a launchpad. I can’t wait to take off.”In addition to recording, the “Trailer Hitch” hitmaker’s deal also includes publishing and an agreement to produce other artists. So far, we don’t know the timeline for the release of Kristian’s follow-up to his 2015 solo debut Southern Gravity.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

From "Tuckerville" to "Today": LOCASH Sees Hard Work Pay Off

Webster PRBack in 2005, the guys in LOCASH got their first national TV exposure on Tanya Tucker’s TLC reality show Tuckerville. Now, thanks to their #2 hit “I Love This Life,” Chris Lucas and Preston Brust are booking even higher-profile TV gigs.“Hard work is really starting to pay off for us,” Chris observes. “We have been seeing the response live. People are singing it back to us. It’s an amazing feeling, for sure.”“Every day is so exciting,” Preston chimes in. “I know this sounds like a cliché, but dreams do come true. We have worked so hard to get to this point. It’s so surreal.”In a couple weeks, the duo will make their network morning show debut on NBC’s Today show February 24, with a late-night appearance on ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live to follow on March 16. They’ve also just released the follow-up to their breakthrough single. It’s called “I Know Somebody,” from their I Love This Life EP.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Rapper Nelly Releases Cover of Thomas Rhett's "Die a Happy Man"

ABC/Image Group LAIf imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then Nelly is giving Thomas Rhett a giant pat on the back. The new single from the St. Louis rapper is a cover of Thomas’s six-week number one, “Die a Happy Man.”Nelly is certainly no stranger to country music, having first collaborated with Tim McGraw on his hit “Over and Over,” which made it to number 3 on Billboard’s Hot 100 in 2004. More recently, he was featured on the remix of Florida Georgia Line’s 2013 smash, “Cruise.” Last October, he told Entertainment Weekly even more country collaborations could be in his future, stopping short of committing to a full project.“I love country music. I respect it to the utmost,” he said. “But there’s nothing in the world that makes me think I can do a country album… I may do an EP that features more than one country artist, so it may have a different vibe, but not a country album.”You check out Nelly's version of Thomas Rhett's hit on YouTube now. It's also available to download via the usual sources. Thomas Rhett's version competes for Single Record of the Year at the upcoming Academy of Country Music Awards.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scotty McCreery and Five Other "American Idol" Winners Return to Mentor the Top

Eric AdkinsScotty McCreery and five other American Idol winners return to the show that made them famous this Thursday, to mentor contestants during the farewell season. Though the identity of the two singers he worked with is top secret, the season-10 winner says he knows how valuable the three days he spent with them is.“I remember how important it was to me during my time on Idol to meet and learn from all the great artists who visited the set and offered their advice. I was proud to be able to come back and offer whatever guidance I could to my two talented contestants. This is their season and their show. I was there to help them shine… and I believe they both did!” he brags.While most people may not realize exactly how hard the Idol contenders work, the 22-year-old certainly does.“That was honestly probably one of the most stressful times of my life,” he recalls. “I was just 17, so that's a time when you should be having fun -- and I was. I was having a blast! When you're looking from the outside in, you see the singing day and you see the elimination day, and it was seven days a week.”On May 3, the 2011 champion will reveal even more when his memoir, Go Big or Go Home:  The Journey Toward the Dream comes out -- including more details about the kind of pressure the Idol contestants face.“Stress and hard work and decisions -- having to stand up to the head of the biggest label in the country and just make decisions -- that's what I'm saying. In the book, you're going to really hear about a kid at 16, 17 that had to grow up in an adult world and make decisions.”Just days ago, Scotty faced another very adult decision, as he and his record label parted ways. Though he’s been working on finishing the album to follow his single “Southern Belle,” so far there are no details about when it’s coming out or who will release it.Tune in to see Scotty Thursday at 8 p.m. ET on Fox, when he’ll also perform duets with two of the contestants in the top 24.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Chase Rice Reveals First Taste of New Music with "Whisper"

Columbia Nashville/Dack Janiels RecordsChase Rice is re-teaming with the writers behind his hits “Ready Set Roll” and “Gonna Wanna Tonight” for “Whisper,” the lead single from his forthcoming album."Personally, I believe my writing has evolved since we put out the last album and it's been a hell of a ride so far, so this one will have a more mature sound to it,” the North Carolina native reveals. “‘Whisper’ is an example of that, having some of those different production elements that push the music beyond where we’ve been before.” The nominee for ACM New Male Vocalist of the Year also considered feedback from his fans as his crafted the follow-up to his current album. “Ignite the Night was great for us, and it opened a lot of doors both creatively and professionally. This new album is still going to have some of those songs, songs that make people want to get up and dance and party at a show, but it also takes fans on our journey with us and has a lot more depth musically because of what I see our fans craving online and at our shows," he says. Chase’s new single “Whisper” is available now via all the usual digital outlets.  Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Dan+Shay Follow Their First Number One with a Romantic Tribute to Their Grandpar

Warner NashvilleDan + Shay are back with their follow-up to their first number one. Just two months after “Nothin’ Like You” topped the charts, they’re releasing  the lead single from their sophomore album, as well as its accompanying video.“‘From the Ground Up’ is a song that started with a conversation about our grandparents and the love that they shared for the 65-plus years that they were married,” Dan Smyers shares. “It tells the story of the life that they built through their power and dedication to each other, and the perseverance to endure whatever would come their way.” “We put our hearts and souls into every word and every note of this song,” Shay Mooney says of the composition the two wrote together. “We just hope that it’s as special to our fans as it is to us.”You can check out the romantic video for “From the Ground Up,” shot just outside Nashville, on YouTube now.Currently up for the Academy of Country Music’s Vocal Duo of the Year award for the third year in a row, Dan +Shay head back out on tour next month, before joining Darius Rucker on his Good for a Good Time trek this summer.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Chris Stapleton to Team Up with Bonnie Raitt at the Grammys

ABC/Image Group LAFour-time nominee Chris Stapleton is the latest country artist now set to perform on the 58th Annual Grammy Awards. He’ll team up with Bonnie Raitt and Gary Clark Jr. to pay tribute to blues legend B.B. King, who passed away last May.Chris’s debut solo effort Traveller is up for both the all-genre Album of the Year as well as Country Album, while its title track competes for Best Country Solo Performance and Best Country Song.He joins fellow nominees Little Big Town, Carrie Underwood and Sam Hunt, who are already set to represent the country genre at the prestigious show. You can watch it live from Los Angeles Monday, February 15 on CBS.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockThis Pennsylvania native spent five seasons playing for the Cincinnati Bengals before hitting number one on the Billboard Country Singles chart in 1990 with "Walk on Faith." Can you name him? ANSWER:  Mike Reid.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

North Carolina Native Chase Rice Admits He's Conflicted About Super Bowl 50, Wis

Columbia Nashville/Dack JanielsThese days, there's more than one current country singer who once had a promising career in college football. Sam Hunt was the quarterback for the University of Alabama at Birmingham, while Chase Rice was a linebacker at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Even though he's a native Tar Heel, Chase says it's still not easy picking a side when it comes to Super Bowl 50."Yeah, the Super Bowl’s tough for me this year," he admits. "I’m a huge Peyton Manning fan. Love who he is as a person, love his character, and love his passion for the game of football, ’cause I’m a huge football guy. Grew up playin’ football, played in college, almost played in the NFL. And seein’ Peyton Manning’s love for the game is awesome. But, it’s hard to pull against the Carolina Panthers."Chase says a friendship he made after college makes it even harder."I’m from Asheville -- Fairview, North Carolina -- right outside of Asheville, I lived in Charlotte for about a year and a half, two years when I worked in NASCAR. Actually, one of my roommates when I was workin’ in NASCAR was Hilee Taylor, who played for the Panthers for a couple years. So, it’s really hard for me to pull against the Panthers, but lucky for me, I get a win-win situation Super Bowl Sunday, ’cause if the Broncos win, I’m very, very happy for Peyton, and if the Panthers win, then we finally brought a Super Bowl home to Carolina."While Chase may have a hard time deciding whether he wants the Carolina Panthers or the Denver Broncos to win Sunday's game, there's one thing he does know for sure- - he doesn't want to host the party!"The first Super Bowl party I’ve ever thrown was last year, and I actually hated it...I’m a huge football guy. I love watchin’, breakin’ down the game. So havin’ all those people around, everybody cheerin’, everybody screamin’, everybody talkin’ ’bout maybe even things other than the Super Bowl, I wanted to tell ’em, ‘Get outta here! I’m watchin’ the game!’ So it was tough for me to throw a party. I’d rather go to someone else’s party and not have all the stress of havin’ people over and all that and havin’ food made and all that. I’d rather just kinda sit there and watch the game."While the lead single from Chase's sophomore album was likely not inspired by the advice he'd like to give at Super Bowl parties, it is appropriately titled -- "Whisper" is due out Friday. Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockCountry Music Hall of Famer Merle Haggard has cancelled all his February dates, as he continues to recover from double pneumonia. He hopes to be back on the road by spring.Mary Chapin Carpenter's new album, The Things That We Are Made Of, will be released May 6.Garth Brooks continues to be a hot ticket as his world tour expands to Canada. So far, fans have snapped up more than 60,000 tickets to his shows at Ottawa's Canadian Tire Centre April 1-3, selling out 3 of the 4 concerts. Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Sam Hunt Set to Take the Field with His Hero Peyton Manning Sunday

ABC/Image Group LASam Hunt and Peyton Manning are both set to take the field this Sunday for Super Bowl 50. Sam will be performing as part of the pregame festivities, while Peyton, of course, will be playing quarterback as the Denver Broncos take on the Carolina Panthers. Since Sam himself is a longtime 'baller, having played QB for the University of Alabama at Birmingham in his college days, it turns out he has a little bit of history with the five-time MVP."When I was in high school, I went to a camp called the Manning Academy," he recalls. "It’s a quarterback camp down in Louisiana. And I got to spend some time with Peyton and Eli, and they have another brother. I’ve followed his career for a long time."Several years later, Sam the country singer came face to face with his football hero."Actually, a couple of years ago, I was at a concert of Kenny Chesney’s in Denver, and I was standing there side stage and Jake Owen was there. He had opened up for him, and I’ve been a friend of his for a little while, and he turned and introduced me to the guy behind us, who I wasn’t aware of at the time, but it turned out to be Peyton Manning. He was just a really nice guy, and it was just pretty cool to be on the stage with two people who inspired me in two different arenas, with Peyton with football and Kenny with music," Sam remembers.So when it comes to this Sunday's matchup, it's no surprise who he'll be rooting for- - even though he does have a bit of a conflict."First off, I’d like to see a really good game. I’m a big Peyton Manning fan, and I always have been. But I have a good friend that I played ball with in college; he’s playing with the Panthers, and their season’s been unbelievable. Just to watch the energy of that team grow throughout the year made it hard not to pull for ‘em, but I guess when it comes down to it, I’m gonna have to go with Peyton, because it could be his last go at it. He deserves it more than anybody. He’s one of the best that’s ever played."The "Break Up in a Small Town" hitmaker plays the Super Bowl 50 Tailgate Party Sunday at Levi's Stadium in San Francisco. You can catch his performance on The Super Bowl Today, starting at 2 p.m. ET on CBS.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scotty McCreery No Longer on Mercury Nashville/Interscope

Eric AdkinsEven though Scotty McCreery has recently been working on finishing his new album, we now know it won’t be on his longtime label. The American Idol winner announced in a statement Wednesday he’s come to the end of the line with Mercury Nashville/Interscope."I enjoyed being on Mercury Nashville/Interscope, and I appreciate all the great people who worked hard on my behalf while I was there. I am excited about what the future holds and the opportunities being presented to me,” he said.Scotty put out three albums for the label -- Clear as Day, Christmas with Scotty McCreery, and See You Tonight -- with the first making him the youngest male artist ever to have his debut record bow at the top of the Billboard 200 all-genre chart.Last year, Scotty released the lead single and video from what was supposed to be his next project for the imprint, titled “Southern Belle.” Forbes also ranked him the fifth-most lucrative Idol winner in 2015, raking in $4 million last year. His memoir, Go Big or Go Home:  The Journey Toward the Dream is due May 3.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Blake Shelton Buys Multi-Million-Dollar Rural Retreat Outside Nashville

ABC/Image Group LAThough we most often hear from Blake Shelton when he’s hanging out in L.A. shooting The Voice or on his 1,200-acre ranch outside Tishomingo, Oklahoma, it looks like he and rock star girlfriend Gwen Stefani could soon be spending more time in Music City. According to Variety, Blake recently dropped $3.4 million on a 400-acre spread about an hour south of Nashville.The Primm Springs, Tennessee compound boasts three houses -- two of them rustic but luxuriously appointed cabins -- as well as many more amenities, including a six-bay garage. There’s a wooden bridge leading over a babbling brook, plus a multi-acre lake, complete with a boathouse. If Blake feels like doing a little riding, there’s a two-stall horse barn and 75 acres of fenced pastureland. If Gwen wants to do an impromptu show, the 60-seat creekside stage and pavilion awaits.You can check out Blake’s rural retreat for yourself in a slideshow provided by the realtor on Variety’s website.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Garth Brooks Set to Play Louisville, Kentucky for the First Time in Almost 20 Ye

Mark TuckerFor the first time in almost two decades, Garth Brooks is coming back to Louisville, Kentucky. He and wife Trisha Yearwood will play the KFC Yum! Center Saturday, April 9 at 7 p.m. Tickets for Garth’s first show in the Derby City in 18 years go on sale Friday, February 12 at 10 a.m. ET via Ticketmaster.This week, Garth and Trisha have a rare weekend off from their World Tour, with their next stop set for North Charleston, South Carolina on Valentine’s Day weekend. Trisha is currently preparing for her role as Mary the mother of Jesus in Fox’s live The Passion, airing March 20 at 8 p.m. ET.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Charles Kelley Reveals False Alarm, Says He Has "Gut Feeling" His Son Will Be He

Capitol NashvilleThough his first child isn't officially due until later this month, Charles Kelley tells ABC Radio he and his wife Cassie believed they were becoming parents on Tuesday, just hours before his Wednesday morning appearance on Good Morning America."I'll go ahead and reveal that we thought it might be happening yesterday, before we were coming here," he revealed backstage at GMA. "My wife went in for an appointment, and they were like 'Uh-oh! I might be having contractions, I don't know. It might just be...' What are these things called? Braxton Hicks or whatever. It's like fake contractions or whatever. But she was in a lot of pain and so, we go and they said 'No, you know, go home. You're all right.' So Cassie gave me the go-ahead to come fly to New York and we definitely have a plane on standby if we need it, cause I am not missing the birth of this first baby."Since Charles' song "The Driver" is up for a Grammy, Cassie had previously insisted that the father-to-be attend the ceremony in Los Angeles, even though the February 15 ceremony is just days before her due date. But now, that's all changed."That is off the table now. She did tell me that -- this was about a month ago. She was like, 'I really want you to go. This is a big moment.' You know, having my first solo single nominated. She said, 'I don't want you to miss this.' And then last week, she goes 'I just don't think I'm going to be able to handle it.'"Even though Lady Antebellum is currently on hiatus, Charles was set to reunite with band mates Hillary Scott and Dave Haywood to pay tribute to Lionel Richie at the MusiCares event the Saturday before the Grammys. Now, that's off the table as well, mainly because Charles is thinking he'll already be changing diapers and rocking his newborn son by then."I have a gut feeling that she's going to be having this baby within the week," he predicts. "And so...I don't want to take any chances. And we didn't want to get so far down the line too where I would have to cancel the day of or before. And so I think they appreciated the heads up. But it broke my heart. I actually need to send a note to Lionel and just tell him what it meant to me to even be asked."  Charles went on to reveal Lady A had planned to do "Endless Love" at the tribute, adding "It would've been epic!"As the soon-to-be first-time dad turns his attention to other epic events in his life, his debut solo album is also on the way. While we don't know exactly when baby Kelley will arrive, we do know The Driver will be here on Friday.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Thomas Rhett Invites Fans to Try on His "T-Shirt"

ABC/Image Group LAThomas Rhett is hoping you’ll try on his “T-Shirt,” as he releases the follow-up to “Die a Happy Man,” the  monster hit that spent six weeks at number one. The new single is a song Thomas has quite a history with, and one he says is already a hit on tour.“I have wanted to put [“T-Shirt”] out since my first record,” he reveals. “Everyone has been in that fun ‘honeymoon’ phase of dating, which is what this song is all about. It’s already a staple in our set each night -- the fans got into it as soon as we added it and it’s just one of those I let loose on and have a good time.”These days, Thomas is having a good time on Jason Aldean’s We Were Her Tour. Thursday, the boys play Southaven, Mississippi, before continuing on to Oklahoma City and Columbia, Missouri on Friday and Saturday.“T-Shirt” is the third single from Thomas’s ACM-nominated album, Tangled Up. He’s up for Single Record of the Year for his fifth number-one in a row, “Die a Happy Man.” He also has a shot at taking home the New Male Vocalist trophy at this year’s Academy of Country Music Awards April 3 in Las Vegas.You can check out the "Instant Grat" video Thomas Rhett shot for "T-Shirt" last year before his album's release on YouTube now.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Cam Calls "Mayday" as Her Follow-Up to "Burning House"

Arista Nashville/RCA RecordsHow do you follow up one of the most-talked-about songs of the year that's already been nominated for a Grammy and an ACM Award? Thanks to feedback from her fans, Cam says it was much easier deciding on the successor to her breakthrough hit, "Burning House.""["Mayday"] is a lot of people's favorite song, actually. It's got a really cool drum beat to it, which I programmed in the beginning," she says proudly. "But now it's real drums on it."Cam's new single has its roots in a period of time when she moved to the Northwest, and was actually started by her co-writer, Tyler Johnson."I moved to Portland for about six months with my best friends before I started on this whole journey," she recalls. "Because I was like, 'I know I need to work on my chops and write, but I know I can hang out with my friends in the meantime.' Tyler started that song about an old relationship and then handed it to me, and in the verses you'll hear kind of this run-on sentence," she says, breaking into song. "'You are overbearing, I'm not in love, but I don't want to tell you.'  And it's like these different ideas, and it really is like this internal monologue because Tyler thought some of these things, and then I added on."The 31-year-old says like many of the songs on her debut album Untamed, "Mayday" was inspired by things she's learned in the past decade."It's just sort of this back and forth in your mind about, 'Why are you still in this relationship?' And you kind of are playing the victim, calling out 'Mayday,' but really it takes two people to be in this relationship. You have to learn how to not be afraid of being alone, and these are all things that I learned in my twenties."So far, Cam's life lessons are reaping big dividends. Just this week, she was nominated for four trophies at this year's Academy of Country Music Awards. Three of those are for "Burning House"-- Video of the Year, and nods as both producer and artist in the Single Record of the Year category. She's also in the running for New Female Vocalist.You can watch Cam's live performance of her new single "Mayday" at The Year in Vevo online now.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Brett Eldredge's CMA Trophy May Soon Have a Buddy

ABC/Image Group LABrett Eldredge already took home a CMA statue -- in 2014 as New Artist of the Year -- and he may soon have an ACM trophy to match. This year, he’s up for both New Male Vocalist and Male Vocalist of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards.“All I’ve ever wanted to do is sing,” the Illinois vocalist says. “I went to college at MTSU and would drive back and forth to Nashville and play at the Holiday Inn Commodore Lounge or songwriters’ nights, just any place where I could sing,” he recalls. “I live to sing and entertain. I cherish every moment of this journey and I’m so honored to be recognized.” We’ll find out if Brett wins April 3 when the awards air live on CBS at 8 p.m. ET.This week, his hit “Drunk on Your Love” cracks the top 15, just as he’s about to head overseas for his first European dates.  He’ll play four shows in the United Kingdom and Ireland starting February 13.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Chris Stapleton Adds Stadium Shows with Luke Bryan, Spring Tour with Anderson Ea

ABC/Fred LeeFresh off his five nominations at this year’s Academy of Country Music Awards, Chris Stapleton is mapping out his spring tour. He’ll hit the road with Miranda Lambert’s beau, Anderson East.Miranda and Anderson reportedly met while working on their songs for the forthcoming Southern Family concept album, due March 18. You can check out the new video for Anderson’s contribution, “Learning,” on YouTube now. Chris and his wife Morgane recorded a track for the collection as well, a remake of the classic “You Are My Sunshine.”Chris is also adding two stadium dates with Luke Bryan to his itinerary. He’ll play the July 16 stop at Gillette Stadium in Boston, as well as the October 22 show at the home of the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas.Here are Chris’s new dates with Anderson East, with tickets going on sale this Friday:4/14 -- Mesa, AZ, Mesa Amphitheatre 4/15 -- Las Vegas, NV, The Joint 4/22 -- Bakersfield, CA, Rabobank Theatre 4/23 -- Berkeley, CA, The Greek Theatre 4/26 -- Santa Barbara, CA, Santa Barbara Bowl 4/27 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Greek Theatre 5/1 -- San Diego, CA, Humphrey’s 5/4 -- Albuquerque, NM, Sandia Casino 5/5 -- Denver, CO, Fillmore Auditorium 5/6 -- Denver, CO, Fillmore AuditoriumCopyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

ACM Nominee Chase Rice Whispers About New Single

Columbia Nashville/Dack JanielsThere’s new music on the way from Chase Rice, and judging from recent teases, his new single is likely called “Whisper.” For the past week, the co-writer of Florida Georgia Line’s smash “Cruise” has been Instagramming a series of photos with the caption, "Friday 2/5 #Shhh #Whisper #NewMusic." Subsequent ads in country music trade publications hinted, “Hear what can start with a WHISPER.”Chase also found out Monday he’s up for his very first Academy of Country Music award.“There are a lot of great things happening for us right now, and I can’t wait to party in Las Vegas,” he said. “I’m excited about our nomination for New Male Vocalist of the Year and even more excited about sharing new music with my fans later this week.”Chase will compete against Brett Eldredge, Chris Janson, Thomas Rhett and Chris Stapleton for the honor.Look for the lead single from Chase's sophomore album on Friday. His 2014 debut, Ignite the Night, landed two singles in the top five: “Ready Set Roll” and “Gonna Wanna Tonight.”Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. Friday 2/5 #Shhh #Whisper #NewMusicA photo posted by Chase Rice (@chaserice) on Feb 1, 2016 at 5:04pm PST

Blake Shelton Takes on Justin Bieber for Favorite Male Singer at Kids' Choice Aw

Courtesy NickelodeonNot only will Blake Shelton host this year’s Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards, he also happens to be the sole country nominee in 2016. The “Gonna” hitmaker is up for Favorite Male Singer, alongside Justin Bieber, Nick Jonas, Drake, Ed Sheeran and The Weeknd.His NBC show, The Voice, is also in the running for Favorite Talent Competition. Voting is open online now, ahead of the Saturday, March 12 show. You can check out Blake’s hosting antics starting at 8 p.m. ET on Nickelodeon.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

How Brotherly Love Played a Part in Charles Kelley's New Solo Album and Upcoming

Capitol Records NashvilleAs Charles Kelley gears up for the release of his debut solo album The Driver this Friday, he's unleashing the details of his spring tour -- one that will find him welcoming his brother Josh as his special guest.Even though Charles and his Lady Antebellum bandmates may've found more widespread acclaim, it was his older brother who pursued his music career first, enjoying a pop hit with his song "Amazing" in 2003. Charles says it's actually his brother who's to thank for laying the groundwork for his success."When I first moved to Nashville, he was the reason I came, and he really helped teach me how to write songs. You know he really did, and the people he was around," he remembers. "His band, you know, would write with me, and I was this nobody, and he would bring over writers."While Charles and his wife Cassie, who are expecting their first child around the middle of this month, still live in Nashville, Josh's home base is in Los Angeles, with his wife, actress Katherine Heigl. It was a combination of winter weather and time off from Lady A that conspired to get the siblings back together again."Last year in January, my wife and I just randomly decided to get out of the cold. We were off, the band was off for a couple months from touring. We were like, ‘Let’s just Airbnb a house in L.A. for a month,' so we went up there in January," he recalls. "And Josh and I reconnected like we haven’t in a long time."One of the tracks on Charles' album, 'Round in Circles," was the result of the brothers' rekindled relationship."Josh and I, we’re very different. He’s this free spirit. Not that I’m not a free spirit, but I’m definitely a little more -- I focus when I work and Josh is just one of these guys that always just wants to just let it happen, and he’s got such a laid-back approach," he reflects. "And I totally just kind of fell into that when I was there in L.A. and we wrote a bunch of songs and I don’t know, I felt like Josh and I became best friends again in that trip, which was really cool. So I was proud we wrote a song that I felt was strong enough to be part of the project."On Wednesday, Charles starts making the media rounds to promote his album with a stop on Good Morning America on ABC. On Thursday, he swings by Bravo's Watch What Happens Live, before checking into The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on CBS on Friday, the project's release day.Here's the itinerary for The Driver tour this spring, with pre-sales starting for Citi card members Wednesday at 10 a.m. local time:4/9 -- Washington, DC, The Fillmore 4/11 -- Boston, MA, House of Blues 4/13 -- Cleveland, OH, House of Blues 4/14 -- Chicago, IL, House of Blues 4/15 -- St. Louis, The Pageant 4/23 -- Anaheim, CA, House of Blues 4/24 -- San Jose, CA, Club Rodeo 4/26 -- Los Angeles, CA, Troubadour 5/1 -- Houston, TX, House of Blues 5/3 -- Nashville, TN, 3rd & Lindsley 5/6 -- Athens, GA, Georgia TheaterCopyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Double ACM Nominee Kelsea Ballerini Confesses It's Still a Thrill to Catch Her S

ABC/Image Group LAFor admitted awards-show-enthusiast Kelsea Ballerini, it's time to pick out another glamorous gown. This week, the newcomer grabbed her very first nominations from the Academy of Country Music. She's up for New Female Vocalist, along with Cam, Mickey Guyton and RaeLynn. She also vies for the big one, Female Vocalist of the Year, alongside Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Kacey Musgraves and Jana Kramer. Even though her first single "Love Me Like You Mean It" rocketed to number one and the follow-up, "Dibs," is on the verge of going top-five, the 22-year-old still hasn't gotten used to all the fanfare. In fact, she says it's still pretty exciting just to hear her song on the radio. "It’s still a very, very new thing for me... I was in Nashville driving around and it came on and I took a video of it and I posted it. 'Cause it’s still like this crazy thing where it’s like, Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood and then me. And I’m like, ‘What is this life? When did this happen?’ So yeah, I still get freaked out by it."Kelsea's in for even more excitement when the 51st Academy of Country Music Awards take place April 3 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The show airs live on CBS at 8 p.m. ET.Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.