Feb. 10—Two former American Idol contestants, billed as “rising country artists,” are now slated to perform at the Centre County Grange Encampment and Fair.
Grange Fair organizers announced Friday morning that taking the grandstand on the night of Aug. 19 will be Season 19 (2021) third-place finisher Alex Miller and HunterGirl, who was the Season 20 (2022) runner-up.
Grandstand shows are free, but admission to the fair is required.
Miller released a post-Idol record just last year, titled “Miller Time,” and he’s since performed at Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry and opened for acts such as Hank Williams Jr. Country star Luke Bryan, who boasts 27 No. 1 hits, once exclaimed, “Boy, you can sing!” Bryan, an American Idol judge, likewise complimented HunterGirl and referred to her as the “new age Miranda Lambert.”
HunterGirl grew up in Tennessee has performed at some of Nashville’s most famous venues, from Tootsies Orchid Lounge to Rippy’s Honky Tonk. According to her website bio, she’s shared the stage with superstars such as Charlie Daniels and Trace Adkins. And her single “Red Bird” was a top-10 hit on the iTunes overall chart.
Grange Fair organizers plan to announce a different grandstand act at 10 a.m. every Friday. This was organizers’ first such announcement.
HunterGirl has performed on “Good Morning America” and “Live with Kelly & Ryan.” She released a five-song EP last year that one critic said was a “true testament to what modern country music is all about.” She’s often been praised for her songwriting, which she’s been doing since the age of 9.
Miller’s sound has been referred to as “fiercely traditional” with an “up-tempo swing approach.” He was born in 2003 and is recognized for his baby-face and 6-foot-5 frame.
The 2023 Grange Fair is set for Aug. 18-26. It is the only remaining tenting fair in the nation, according to its website.
(c)2023 the Centre Daily Times (State College, Pa.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
The COUNTRY MUSIC HALL OF FAME AND MUSEUM has promoted SVPs NINA BURGHARD and LISA PURCELL to EVP roles. BURGHARD will serve as EVP/Finances and Operations, and PURCELL as EVP/External Affairs. Both will continue to report to CEO KYLE YOUNG.
YOUNG said, “Both LISA and NINA have moved into expanded roles, taking on the supervision of additional departments and scopes of work, helping to strengthen the institution. Their talents and leadership have been essential to the success of the museum and its growth over the past decade.”
While previously serving as SVP/Financial Services & Operations, BURGHARD added the museum’s information and technology department to her responsibilities, as well as the management of the museum’s COVID-19 safety processes during the pandemic. Prior to joining the museum in 1998, she spent a decade with ARTHUR ANDERSON LLP.
PURCELL, who previously served as SVP/External Affairs, added supervision of the marketing and public relations departments to her work, which supports the museum’s development, education and community engagement efforts. Her leadership areas encompass contributed income, including individual giving, planned giving, membership and corporate partnerships; educational programming; public relations; public affairs; and marketing. Prior to joining the museum in 2014, PURCELL served as VP/External affairs for HANDS ON NASHVILLE and worked in the program and administrative departments of diverse nonprofit organizations, ranging from the FRIST ART MUSEUM to the music business charity T.J. MARTELL FOUNDATION.
Country music superstar Luke Bryan will be taking the stage on July 27 at the United Supermarkets Arena as he brings Country on Tour 2023 to the Hub City.
Special guests will be Tyler Braden, Ashley Cooke and Jackson Dean.
Bryan, a Georgia native, moved to Nashville at age 19, where he started out writing songs for a variety of artists including Travis Tritt and Billy Currington before signing his own contract with Capitol Nashville in 2007.
Bryan has been named Entertainer of the Year five times, awarded by the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association. In 2019, his 2013 album “Crash My Party” received the first Album of the Decade award from the ACM. Worldwide, he has sold more than 75 million records.
Some of Bryan’s biggest hits include “Do I” “Rain is a Good Thing” “Someone Else Calling You Baby” “Country Girl (Shake it for Me)” and “Drunk On You”, among many others. He has had nearly 30 No. 1 hits.
Alabama native Braden has earned massive fan response from his original releases including “Love Is A Dead End Road,” “Secret,” “What Do They Know” and “Ways To Miss You.” His debut single “Try Losing One” is currently at U.S. country radio and has topped SiriusXM The Highway’s Hot 30 Countdown. Braden’s Warner Music Nashville debut EP “What Do They Know (WDTK)” is out now. For more information, visit his website, www.tylerbraden.com/
Singer/songwriter Dean is quickly earning a reputation for his old school, gritty, lyric-driven, outlaw style of country. The Maryland native’s debut, “Don’t Come Lookin’” is climbing through the Top 5 after being featured on the soundtrack for Netflix’s “The Ice Road”, Paramount Network’s hit series “Yellowstone” and having been covered on The Kelly Clarkson Show, according to his website jacksondeanmusic.com
Cooke, from Parkland, Florida, was moved by hit makers like Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts and Kelly Clarkson. She embraces pop and country, writing her first song by age 11. Cooke moved to Nashville at 18 and attended Belmont University. After entering the school’s Country Showcase on a whim and winning, she decided to pursue music for a year. When the pandemic hit, Cooke took to TikTok, where she built a thriving fanbase. For more, visit her website at https://www.ashleycooke.com/
Tickets for this concert range start at $35 and up depending on seating and VIP package features.
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit selectaseatlubbock.com
This article originally appeared on Lubbock Avalanche-Journal: Country superstar Bryan bringing Country on Tour 2023 to Hub City
PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) – Parkersburg Homecoming has announced the headline acts for 2023.
Country music newcomer Brandon Davis will be the feature act on Friday, August 18 at 8:30 p.m. He went on tour with Tim McGraw in 2022. the Matt VanFossen Band will kick off the entertainment at 6:30 p.m.
Darryl Worley will play Saturday, August 19th at 8:30 p.m. to close out the 21st annual Johnny Staats Bluegrass Festival beginning at 4:00 p.m. Worley is a country music singer and songwriter. His hit songs include “Good Day to Run,” “I Miss My Friend,” “Second Wind” and his 9/11 anthem “Have You Forgotten.” He previously performed at Parkersburg Homecoming in 2004.
Lynch is headlining the opening night of performances at the Birds Nest on Wednesday alongside Lainey Wilson and Chris Lane.
PHOENIX — Did you know country music star Dustin Lynch had a scholarship to play golf in college?
His love for fairways and tee boxes is only matched by his appreciation of country music and this week he gets to experience both.
With his affinity for golf, there’s really no surprise performing at the Birds Nests in Scottsdale during the WM Phoenix Open is on his bucket list. And this week he’s checking that off his list!
Lynch is headlining the opening night of performances at the Birds Nest on Wednesday alongside Lainey Wilson and Chris Lane.
He talked with 12News, sharing that golf has been a passion in his family for years.
“I played like every day since I can remember walking, so my dad was pro at a country club believe it or not in Tullahoma, Tennessee, my hometown,” said Lynch.
The country music star said he had a scholarship to play at Lipscomb University in Nashville and was on the golf team there.
Lynch told 12News he considered taking a professional path with golf, but ultimately, he found music really speaks to him, but the sport is still offering some great analogies of life.
“Music is kind of like when you get on stage, it’s a guaranteed final pairing on Sunday. The adrenaline is there every time, and with golf, you kind of have to earn that juice, if you will,” said Lynch. “So on music, it just became a lot more fun and more consistent to feel that adrenaline and that kick.”
Lynch shared some of the guys he played with in college are now playing on the PGA Tour and he’s rooting for them through the tournament.
He said he feels lucky to be performing on the first night at the Birds Nest, so he can enjoy the rest of the week in Arizona.
“It’s that first night fever, right? They’re not going to be worn down from partying all day at 16, or on the course, or wherever they’re going so we kind of lucked out getting the first night there and I’ve got a lot of friends playing the rest of the week so we’re going to kick it off in style and do what we do,” said Lynch.
You can check out tickets to the Birds Nest online.
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Keith Urban; Photo by Andrew Wendowski, Carrie Underwood; Photo by Jeff Johnson, Luke Bryan; Photo Courtesy Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert; Photo by John Shearer, Garth Brooks; Photo by Andrew Wendowski
Las Vegas is the home of late nights, fabulous shopping experiences, fine dining, and best of all, world-renowned entertainment. Country stars like Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban, and Garth Brooks are bringing a bit of Nashville to Sin City with a spectacular set of shows, unlike anything fans have seen on a standard tour.
Shifting stages, surprise guests, epic costume changes and more can all be expected from these upcoming residences.
Keep reading to find out more about the specially-curated country music experiences that are taking over Las Vegas in 2023.
Garth Brooks is taking his live show to Sin City with his Garth Brooks/Plus ONE Las Vegas Residency. Beginning in May, the show will take place at the 4,100-seat The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, in the heart of the famed Las Vegas Strip.
The country music icon promises that each night of his Las Vegas residency will give fans the opportunity to see him in an intimate setting. Each of the once-in-a-lifetime performances will be unique with varying band members and an occasional special guest. Garth Brooks/Plus ONE kicks off on May 18 and will continue through June, July, November and December of 2023.
Purchase tickets HERE.
Miranda Lambert is extending her headlining residency show at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. Due to fan demand, Miranda Lambert: Velvet Rodeo The Las Vegas Residency will now run through the end of 2023. Lambert added 16 new shows, all of which will take place in July, November, and December 2023. Her previously announced shows also include dates in March and April.
Designed exclusively for Zappos Theater and promoted by Live Nation and Caesars Entertainment, the country star’s residency will give her audience an up close and personal opportunity to experience live performances of her numerous chart-topping songs and beloved album cuts.
Purchase tickets HERE,
Keith Urban will be taking over Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino for 16 dates in 2023. Keith Urban: The Las Vegas Residency will launch in March, following his headlining THE SPEED OF NOW WORLD TOUR 2022, and continue with dates in June and the beginning of July.
Over the past three years, Urban has had a successful run of shows at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. In the new space, he promises that each night will consist of a brand-new show that is custom designed for the fresh space in Zappos Theater.
Purchase tickets HERE.
Carrie Underwood’s wildly successful REFLECTION: The Las Vegas Residency at Resorts World Theatre is slated to return in 2023. The female country star will make her way back to Sin City for 18 new dates, beginning June 21.
Underwood was the very first artist to grace the Resorts World Theatre stage when she made her debut at the 5,000-seat theatre with a sold-out show on Dec. 1, 2021. With several costume changes and state of the art production, REFLECTION quickly became a must-see Las Vegas residency. Her new headlining stint will include dates throughout June, July, September, November and December.
Purchase tickets HERE.
Due to ticket demand, Luke Bryan has unveiled 12 new dates for Luke Bryan: Vegas at Resorts World Theatre. The expanded residency will showcase Bryan’s tremendous success as an artist through a career-spanning setlist, stunning visuals, and shifting stages that move along to the beat of the music.
Bryan kicked off his residency in February of 2022. With the recently-announced new dates, he will remain in Las Vegas for several shows in February and March before wrapping up on April 1.
Country music star Chris Stapleton will perform the national anthem ahead of the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles showdown at Super Bowl 57 on Sunday, USA Today reported.
The national anthem performance at Super Bowl 57
Stapleton, an eight-time Grammy winner known for hits like “You Should Probably Leave” and “Tennessee Whiskey,” will perform the national anthem alongside actor Troy Kotsur, who starred in the 2021 Sundance breakout hit and Oscar-winning film “CODA.” Kotsur — who became the second deaf person to win an Oscar, sharing the distinction with his “CODA” co-star, Marlee Matlin — will present the national anthem in American Sign Language, per USA Today.
Additionally, “Abbott Elementary” star Sheryl Lee Ralph will perform “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” presented in ASL by TikTok star Justina Miles, while R&B singer-songwriter Babyface will sing “America the Beautiful,” presented in ASL by Colin Denny, a member of the Navajo Nation in Arizona, according to Axios.
Most recently, Stapleton appeared at the 65th annual Grammy Awards ceremony on Feb. 5, performing “Higher Ground” alongside Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson. At the ceremony, Stapleton was a nominated songwriter for best country song, having co-written “I’ll Love You Til the Day I Die” for Willie Nelson’s 2022 album “A Beautiful Time,” per Taste of Country.
Pony Bradshaw is a name everyone needs to know in country music.
He’s been an underrated talent in the scene for quite some time now, but if there was ever any need for more proof, his latest album North Georgia Rounder should be all the proof anyone needs.
With a focus on storytelling in his songwriting, Bradshaw seems to take after Ernest Hemingway or William Faulkner just as much as he might Bob Dylan or Townes Van Zandt. In each song he utilizes literary devices and techniques to tell short stories of people, places, and events that all somehow manage to convey a message across the entire album.
This was the case with his first two albums, Sudden Opera (2019) and Calico Jim (2021), and North Georgia Rounder is no exception.
A North Georgia native himself, and a rounder of sorts as his music constantly brings him to bars throughout the country, North Georgia Rounder is presumably just as introspective and authentic as it is speculative and fictional.
I could go on deeper into the album and attempt to explain all of the wonderful stories Bradshaw brings us in one of the best albums of the year thus far, but I’ll let the music, and Bradshaw’s songwriting, speak for itself.
He does the writing a lot better, anyway.
Check out some of my favorite songs:
“A Free, Roving Mind”
“I’m a late bloomer With nothing to fall back on She’s done gone with the roses And I ain’t got no kinda home The silver mist hangs like wet smoke Draped across the burning moon And I don’t need no reason To pen a sad and lonesome tune…”
“North Georgia Rounder”
“I’m a North Georgia Rounder Playin’ these foothill stomps With my ragtime Rosie at my elbow Chewin’ on her French cigarettes We came to drink, we came to dance We came to sing our troubles away, yeah I’m a North Georgia Rounder Playin’ these foothill stomps…”
“A Duffel, A Grip, and my D35”
There has been a lot of good music so far this year, and Pony Bradshaw has brought us some of the best.
Country music has been called “the white man’s blues” for two reasons: the blues had a huge impact on the genre, and it’s been dominated by white performers. However, there are many great black country singers who bring soul into the country music world.
Find out all about them on our list of the best black country music singers.
The Top 15 Black Country Singers
15. DeFord Bailey
Though not among the black country singers, DeFord Bailey is one of the first legendary musicians to grace the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, paving the way for the rest of the black country music singers on our list.
His career spanning from the early 1920s until 1941, Bailey was one of the very first performers ever to be announced on Nashville’s biggest radio station, WSM’s Grand Ole Opry.
He was also the first black performer to ever appear on the show and was the first musician to have his music recorded in Nashville.
The harmonica legend was the first black country singer to be inducted as a member of the Grand Ole Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Known as the “Harmonica Wizard,” the path he blazed is still remembered today.
Related: The 15 Best Male Country Singers of All Time: A Definitive List
14. Coffey Anderson
Coffey Anderson appeared briefly as a contestant in season 2 of American Idol and the sixth season of Nashville Star but is best known for his YouTube videos, which feature both original songs and cover performances.
He signed his first record deal with Dream Records in April 2010 and subsequently released his self-titled album Coffey Anderson in September of that same year.
The album made it on the U.S. Billboard 200 albums chart and featured singles such as “You Are All I’m After,” “Seek Your Face,” and “Sunshine.”
13. Cleveland Francis
Did anyone else’s heart skip a beat when they heard Cleveland Francis sing “Love Light” for the first time? Good thing he’s not just a singer-songwriter but a cardiologist to boot.
Francis recorded nine albums throughout his career, which began in the 1960s.
His singles have charted four times on the Billboard Hot Country Songs Chart, his most successful being “You Do My Heart Good” in 1992.
He seemingly disappeared from the music world for many years after returning to medicine but came back into the spotlight in 2022, releasing a remastered reissue of “Follow Me,” a folk album that he self-released in 1970.
12. Lesley Riddle
Some might ask: who are old African-American country singers? One of the best is Lesley Riddle.
Lesley Riddle first picked up a guitar in the late 20s, developing and mastering an original picking and slide technique that attracted other musicians whom he soon began collaborating with.
Although Riddle has several studio recordings under his belt, he is best known for his association with the Carter Family.
Riddle first met A.P. Carter in December of 1928, and the two soon ventured out on trips together to gather songs. While Carter worked on the lyrics, Riddle’s ability to memorize the melody got him dubbed the “human tape recorder.”
Examples of this collaboration include the Carter Family’s “Cannonball Blues” and “Lonesome For You.”
11. Brittney Spencer
One of the more recent black country singers to grace our list, Brittney Spencer has not wasted time since first coming onto the scene in 2020 after a video of her covering The Highwomen went viral.
She has since released her first E.P., Compassion, as well as multiple singles, most popularly 2021’s “Sober & Skinny.”
Her fame has only continued to grow as she’s graced the stage of the Country Music Association Awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards, and more.
In November 2022, she signed with Elektra Records, making her one of the up-and-coming black country singers of 2023.
Related: The Best 15 Female Country Singers of All Time: Who Made the List?
10. Petrella Ann Bonner
“The first lady of country soul,” Petrella Ann Bonner has been a part of the country music scene since the mid-1980s.
She has recorded eight studio albums, with several singles appearing on the Top 100 Country Singles charts.
Bonner is a member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International and was named “Songwriter of the Year” by the Tennessee Songwriters Association in 1994 for her song “Living on a Shoestring.”
9. Chapel Hart
America fell in love with sisters Danica and Devynn Hart and their cousin Trea Swindle, aka Chapel Hart, when they graced the America’s Got Talent stage with their original song, “You Can Have Him Jolene,” a unique twist on the Dolly Parton classic.
The performance earned them a group Golden Buzzer from host Terry Crews and the AGT judges.
Although they ultimately finished in fifth place, they have since made their debut at the Grand Ole Opry and are featured on fellow black country music singer Darius Rucker’s single “Ol’ Church Hymn,” released in late 2022.
8. Rhiannon Giddens
Is there anything Rhiannon Giddens can’t do? As a founding member of the Grammy-winning Carolina Chocolate Drops, she keeps busy as the lead singer, fiddle player, and banjo player.
She has also released two solo albums, Tomorrow is My Turn and Freedom Highway, and two collaborative albums with Francesco Turrisi, There is No Other and They’re Calling Me Home.
Related: The 50 Best Country Songs from Jimmie Rodgers to Morgan Wallen
7. Ray Charles
Although he’s known as the pioneer of soul music, you can’t deny Ray Charles’ contributions to the world of country music, particularly with his 1962 album Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music and its sequel released the same year.
Country living legend Willie Nelson has noted how Charles’ country albums “kicked country music forward 50 years” because of the latter’s coverings of Don Gibson and Hank Williams, introducing a whole new generation of fans to the legendary country crooners.
6. Jimmie Allen
Jimmie Allen is another up-and-coming black country music singer, having first appeared on the scene in 2017.
Signed to Stoney Creek, an imprint of Broken Bow Records, he has released multiple singles and three studio albums under the label.
Has a black singer ever won a CMA Award? Yes, in fact.
In 2021, Allen was awarded the Country Music Association Award for New Artist of the Year, only the second Black country singer to do.
5. Cowboy Troy
When it comes to the country-rap world, Cowboy Troy dominates.
He has recorded seven studio albums and charted twice on the Billboard country singles charts with “Loco Motive” in 2005 and “Black in the Saddle” in 2007.
Over the years, he’s been part of several collaborations with fellow country artists, including Big & Rich and Sarah Buxton.
4. Mickey Guyton
Guyton moved to Nashville in 2011 after being introduced to industry professionals Gary Borman and Steve Moir.
Soon after, she was signed to UMG’s Capitol Records Nashville, making her the only female black country artist to be signed to a top record label.
After doing “Nashville the Nashville way,” in 2019 she began writing music that told the story of her struggles as a black woman, her most well-known being “Black Like Me,” released in 2020.
Guyton performed the single at the Academy of Country Music Awards, the first female black country singer to ever perform during the show.
She reached yet another first when she became the first black woman to host the award show when she co-hosted with Keith Urban in 2021.
Related: The 21 Best Drinking Songs to Raise Your Glass To
3. Kane Brown
Kane Brown first began getting noticed in 2014 with his viral videos covering several artists, including Alan Jackson and George Strait.
He subsequently signed with the Zone 4 in 2014, releasing a few singles throughout that time. He then signed with Sony Music Nashville in January 2016.
Kane released his debut full-length album, Kane Brown, in December of that year, which opened at No. 10 on the U.S. Billboard 200.
His second single from the album, “What Ifs,” a duet with fellow country singer Lauren Alaina, has been certified platinum five times by the RIAA.
Brown has since released two more studio albums, Experiment and Different Man, the former becoming his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart.
In 2021, he became the first black country singer ever to win Video of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards for his single “Worldwide Beautiful.”
2. Darius Rucker
Darius Rucker broke into music as the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for the rock band Hootie & the Blowfish, but when he left to pursue a solo career, country music is where he turned.
Rucker signed to Capitol Nashville in 2008 and has since released five studio albums on the label.
He found success quickly with his first single, “Don’t Think I Don’t Think About It,” which reached No. 1 on the Hot Country Songs chart. It was only the second time a black country artist reached that feat since Charley Pride in 1983.
In 2009, he became the first black country singer to win the Country Music Association’s New Artist of the Year Award.
In 2012, he became the third black country singer to be inducted as a member of the Grand Ole Opry, following in the footsteps of DeFord Bailey and Charley Pride.
Since his first album, Rucker has consistently released No. 1 singles and is set to release his sixth studio album later this year.
Darius Rucker is definitely one of the black country singers of 2023 who isn’t slowing down anytime soon.
Related: Garth Brooks Net Worth: How Did the Legendary Country Artist Make His Millions?
1. Charley Pride
Who is the most popular black country singer? That’d be Charley Pride.
The top black country music singer of all time, Pride was the first black country music singer to make it to the big time.
Pride’s biggest success came in the mid-1970s, during which time he was the best-selling performer for RCA Records since Elvis.
Throughout his career, Pride had 52 Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart, with 30 of them reaching No. 1. He is a three-time Grammy Award winner and is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry.
Pride’s most well-known tune,\ “Kiss an Angel Good Mornin’” was released in 1971. It sold a million copies and was No. 1 on the country charts for five weeks straight.
It became a crossover hit, peaking at No. 21 on the pop Top 40 chart and No. 10 on the Adult Contemporary chart.
The year of its release, Pride was honored with the Country Music Association’s highest honor, Entertainer of the Year, as well as the Male Vocalist of the Year Award in 1971 and 1972.
In 2020, he was awarded the Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award during the 46th annual CMA Awards, performing his signature hit. It would be his last performance as he passed away from complications caused by COVID-19 on Dec. 12, 2020.
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