Industry Items: Otto, Fletcher, More

ottoJames Otto’s Warner Bros. Records debut single, “Just Got Started Lovin’ You,” has achieved sales of 500,000 units and has been certified Digital Gold by the RIAA.



An interview with Universal Records South’s Fletcher Foster is posted at This week In The Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc.


The NashvillePost reports: Gospel legend BeBe Winans last week won a three-year old copyright case in which he had been named the defendant. The case centered on Winans’ albums My Christmas Prayer, which was recorded in 2003, and Dream, recorded a year later. Read it here.


Effective Sept. 30, Citadel Media will discontinue syndication of GAC Nights: Live From Nashville. The radio show co-hosted by Buzz Brainard and Suzanne Alexander debuted in January 2008.


Carrie Smith is the new host of Nashville At Nite. Recently, she has been seen hosting a variety of Internet and television programming including the popular HGTV Solutions. Her resume also includes voiceover work, such as the series voice host of CMT’s Dedicated. The second season of Nashville At Nite begins in September and is available exclusively online at

Is Gloriana Splitting? [not]

JustineCoverShotNo Gloriana isn’t separating, but its two female members—Cheyenne Kimball and Rachel Reinert—are appearing [by themselves] on the cover of Justine Magazine for its Aug./Sept. issue without Mike and Tom Gossin. The teen magazine, devoted to Real Girls and Real Teen Issues, also contains a four page article that talks about the formation of the band, its new music and “life on the road opening for Taylor Swift’s Fearless 2009 Tour.”

Vocal quartet Gloriana is actively promoting its debut CD release this week which stayed at No. 1 on iTunes on release day. Warner Bros. hosted a casual get together for the group last Tuesday to celebrate the event during which Promo Captain Gator Michaels audio conferenced live with the act who was in N.Y. doing interviews. Most of the Gloriana team, however, were absent from the WB conference room event, since they are on the road attending to launch week details.

Gloriana’s first single “Wild At Heart” was Top 10 on MusicRow’s Country Breakout chart.

And in case you’re wondering what the Gloriana guys have been up to…click here.

Lambert Planning A “Revolution At The Ryman”

miranda-albumMiranda Lambert will perform her entire forthcoming album in sequence at the Ryman Auditorium just days before its release, so she can share the new music with Nashville fans and music industry peers. The “Revolution at the Ryman” will be Sept. 24, prior to the Sept. 29 release date, and she plans to close out the set with hits from her first two critically acclaimed albums, Kerosene and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Tickets will go on sale at 10 AM Fri., Aug. 14 at or

Lambert, a two-time Grammy nominee has seen her previous albums debut at No. 1 on the Country Album Chart. Her third Sony album, Revolution, was produced by Frank Liddell and Mike Wrucke, and Lambert wrote or co-wrote all but three of the 15 cuts. She worked with a cross-section of writers including Blake Shelton, Ashley Monroe, Natalie Hemby and Lady Antebellum’s Dave Haywood and Charles Kelley, who lends background vocals on “Love Song.” Of the three songs Lambert did not write, she pulled from her talented favorites—John Prine, Julie Miller, Allen Shamblin and Tom Douglas to complete the album.

Miranda continues to tour the country with superstar Kenny Chesney and has plans to headline dates this fall and winter in support of Revolution.

Artist Photos: O’Neal, Young, Wilson, and Mark Schultz


Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry last Friday (July 31): Jamie O'Neal and Chris Young.

Platinum-selling, Dove Award winning singer/songwriter, Mark Schultz, received multiple standing ovations as the featured recording artist at this month’s Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Saturday Morning Meeting in Bentonville, AR.  An honor reserved for only a select few recording artists, last month’s featured artist was Trace Adkins. Schultz was invited to appear at this exclusive executive gathering July 18 in preparation for the release of his highly anticipated, fifth studio album, Come Alive, releasing Aug. 25 on Word Records.

Platinum-selling, Dove Award winning singer/songwriter, Mark Schultz, received multiple standing ovations as the featured recording artist at this month’s Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Saturday Morning Meeting in Bentonville, AR. An honor reserved for only a select few recording artists, last month’s featured artist was Trace Adkins. Schultz was invited to appear at the executive gathering July 18 in preparation for the release of his fifth studio album, "Come Alive," due Aug. 25 on Word Records.

Gretchen Wilson took over the morning show of HANK 106.3 FM in Merced, CA last Friday, handling traffic, weather and news. 

Fans can catch a glimpse of Gretchen at home and on her farm outside Nashville in “People” magazine’s Country Music special issue, which hits stands this Fri., Aug. 7, and on the TV special “People Country on CMT,” which begins airing that same afternoon. Pictured with HANK FM’s Morning Madhouse (L-R) PD/Morning Host Brian “B-Mo” Montgomery, Wilson, station winner, HANK FM’s Bob Henson, and station winner.

Strait Talks Twang

GeorgeStrait_TwangGeorge Strait discusses his new album Twang to be released Aug. 11.

The first single from “Living For the Night,” hit the Top 15 mark in just three weeks, making it one of the fastest rising singles of Strait’s career and the first radio single he has written. The song, written by Strait, his son Bubba Strait and legendary songwriter Dean Dillon, sits at No. 10 this week on MusicRow’s Country Breakout chart.

The legendary Texan, who has sold more than 67 million albums throughout his record-breaking career, co-produced the 13-track disc with long-time producer Tony Brown. Twang is Strait’s 38th album and was recorded at Shrimpboat Sound Studio in Key West, FL., the same studio where he recorded his last two award-winning albums.

The Oaks and Opryland

oaksThe Oak Ridge Boys are building fan connections through a unique package coming to the Opryland Hotel this fall. The Inaugural Oak Ridge Boys Rally will take place at Gaylord Opryland Resort October 23-25. Guests will spend two nights at the acclaimed resort, enjoy a concert, and attend a Q&A dessert reception with the band. The two-night reserved package, priced at $249, also includes tickets to the Grand Ole Opry with an appearance by the Oak Ridge Boys, a limited edition commemorative poster, and more.

A VIP package upgrade is available for an additional $40, including a meet-and-greet with the Oak Ridge Boys prior to the Opry and an Oak Ridge Boys special gift item.

The Oaks have been adding cover songs into their set, which the younger fans love. “When we throw new songs at the audience, it’s fun to watch their reaction,” says Richard Sterban. “The cool thing is they’re loving it. We don’t give it any introduction; we just go straight into each song. We did [The White Stripes’] “Seven Nation Army” in Minnesota recently and got a standing ovation. The younger kids in the audience were freaking out.”

Anderson In The Studio, Ingram on TV, Griffith In France


Bill Anderson and Rex Schnelle

Whisperin’ Bill Anderson teamed-up with his producer/engineer Rex Schnelle, this week to begin recording a new CD at studios in Nashville. Anderson notes that the album will contain songs he has written with such collaborators as Jamie Johnson of the Grascals, Brad Paisley, Jon Randall, Rivers Rutherford, Buddy Cannon, Tim Nichols, Barry Dean, and Casey Beathard. The project is expected to be available before Christmas in select stores and at


Jack Ingram will appear in an upcoming episode of Lifetime’s Army Wives, the network’s highest-rated television series to date. Sixty-second promos for the episode featuring Ingram and his current hit single “Barefoot and Crazy” are already running with the full episode set to air Sun., Aug. 16 at 10:00P ET/PT. Filmed during CMA Music Festival in June, Ingram gave cast members Wendy Davis and Sally Pressman a VIP tour of Nashville that included boot shopping, beer drinking at Roberts Western World, and a backstage pass to the country rocker’s stadium performance at LP Field. Ingram’s eleven track studio album is out Aug. 25.



Jeff Griffith at Country Rendez-Vous in France

Texan Jeff Griffith was in Craponne-sur-Arzon, France recently for the 22nd Country Rendez-Vous Festival, which drew over 28,000 country music fans from Europe and beyond. Running July 24-26, Griffith headlined with Jo Dee Messina, Eric Church and The Flatlanders. He played to a crowd of over 9,000, offering music from his debut CD, If It Ain’t One Thing It’s Another, as well as five of his own newly-written songs. The crowd not only sang along, but line-danced to Jeff’s current hit, “Dip Me In Beer,” and cheered him on to three encores. Several of Jeff’s Festival performances, including “Dip Me in Beer,” can be enjoyed on YouTube, here.

Rising Artists: Thompson, Armiger, Carter’s Chord


Thompson onstage with KATC PD Jim West.

Columbia Nashville artist Josh Thompson released his debut single, “Beer On The Table,” yesterday (8/4) via digital outlets. He has been on a radio tour and recently wrapped up a week in the southwest with a visit to Colorado Springs. During the stop, Thompson made a surprise appearance on stage with KATC PD Jim West’s band Latigo. The impact of the new song was obvious when the crowd went wild during his performance of “Beer On The Table.”


Katie Armiger has teamed up with CiCi’s Pizza for their Ultimate Pizza Party Blowout at 650 restaurants nationwide on Sat., Aug. 8. The anticipated 650,000 diners will receive a coupon book with over $100 in savings from major retailers and a discount to download her album Believe (Cold River Records). She has released her latest single, “Gone,” to radio. The ballad is one of the first songs that Katie wrote both lyrically and musically on her own, and has been winning her fans on the road during her first national tour on the Simon dTour – Country Music Tour sponsored by Great American Country, Simon Property Group, Inc., and F.Y.E.


Show Dog Nashville sister trio Carter’s Chord performed the national anthem this past Saturday, Aug. 1 at Atlanta’s Turner Field as the Atlanta Braves host the Los Angeles Dodgers. The game was nationally-televised on FOX. Becky, Emily and Joanna Robertson released their debut album last year on Show Dog and have recently been in the studio working on new material with producer, label proprietor and superstar Toby Keith.


(L-R): Carter’s Chord’s Emily, Becky and Joanna Robertson

ACM Honors Revealed, Womack To Host

leeannwomackLee Ann Womack will host the 2nd Annual ACM Honors, an evening dedicated to recognizing the special honorees and off-camera category winners from the 44th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards. The event will take place on Tuesday, September 22, 2009 in Nashville at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center.

Those being honored include Special Award recipients, as well as winners of the MBI (musician, bandleader, instrumentalist) and Industry categories. Merle Haggard, Harlan Howard, Dolly Parton, Jerry Reed, Kenny Rogers, Randy Travis, Hank Williams Jr., David Young and the film Beer For My Horses are among the honorees.

Special Awards (voted on by the ACM Board of Directors)
Cliffie Stone Pioneer Award – Jerry Reed, Kenny Rogers, Randy Travis, Hank Williams Jr.
Jim Reeves International Award – Dolly Parton
Mae Boren Axton Award – David Young
Poet’s Award – Merle Haggard, Harlan Howard
Tex Ritter Award – Beer For My Horses

MBI Awards (member voted)
Audio Engineer of the Year – Chuck Ainlay
Producer of the Year – Tony Brown
Top Bass Player of the Year – Glenn Worf
Top Fiddle Player of the Year – Aubrey Haynie
Top Guitarist of the Year – Tom Bukovac
Top Percussionist/Drummer of the Year – Greg Morrow
Top Piano/Keyboard Player of the Year – Gordon Mote
Top Specialty Instrument(s) Player of the Year – Eric Darken, Jelly Roll Johnson (Tied)
Top Steel Guitar Player of the Year – Dan Dugmore

Industry Awards (member voted)
Casino of the Year – Turning Stone Casino (Verona, NY)
Don Romeo Talent Buyer of the Year – Fran Romeo, Romeo Entertainment
Nightclub of the Year – Joe’s Bar (Chicago, IL)
Promoter of the Year – Louis Messina, The Messina Group
Venue of the Year – The Ryman Auditorium (Nashville, TN)

Luke Bryan Release Coming Oct. 6

lukeb-cdLuke Bryan is set to release his sophomore Capitol Records Nashville album, Doin’ My Thing, on Oct. 6. The follow-up to his No. 2 debut, I’ll Stay Me, that produced the hit singles “All My Friends Say” and “Country Man,” is being driven by Bryan’s current ballad “Do I” which is steadily climbing the country charts. It is at No. 23 this week on MusicRow’s Country Breakout chart.

“I can’t wait for my fans to hear my new record,” says Bryan. “I have wrapped 3 years of touring, hard work and most importantly meeting fans and I think all of that growth is reflected on this album. Doin’ My Thing will make my die hard fans very happy and hopefully will reach out and grab some new fans. I am very proud of the music on this album and can’t wait to get it out there!”

The Georgia native had a career making 2008 with two major award nominations including the CMT Breakthrough Video of the Year nomination and his first nomination from the Academy of Country Music for “Best New Male Artist.”

Bryan, an avid hunter and fisherman, is also serving as the 2009 honorary chairman for National Hunting and Fishing Day taking place Sept. 26—a week before his album release. It is an annual celebration to remind the public that hunters and anglers often lead wildlife and outdoor conservation efforts. Hunting and fishing licenses, plus special taxes on related equipment generate more than $1.75 billion per year for the cause.