Country Comes To The Small and Silver Screens

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Jake Owen

Jake Owen will appear on BRAVO’s Watch What Happens Live on today (March 7) at 11:00 p.m. ET. Owen will join host Andy Cohen discuss his recent performance at Madison Square Garden. Actress Jennifer Love Hewitt will also appear.

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Will Hoge

Will Hoge will perform his ACM-nominated song “Even If It Breaks Your Heart” on WGN Midday New ‘Music Lounge’ today (March 7) at 12 noon CT.

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Jana Kramer has roles in two upcoming films, Heart of the Country and Approaching Midnight. In Heart of the Country, Kramer’s character, Faith, heads to New York City in pursuit of a music career, but ends up falling in love with her husband, Luke. After she finds out that Luke is not as he seems and he ends up getting arrested, Faith heads back to North Carolina, where she renews her friendship with Lee, a doctor. The film also follows her relationship with her father (portrayed by Gerald McRaney).

Jana Kramer

Jana Kramer

In the war-themed film Approaching Midnight, Kramer plays Aspen Malverne, daughter of a small town mayor. According to the trailer, Kramer’s character dies in the film, lending mystery to the plot. Sam Khaleghi portrays a soldier returning from war in Afghanistan (Malverne was his girlfriend), to the ensuing drama of his girlfriend’s death and the suspicion that her father might be running an illegal arms trade.
Watch the trailers for Approaching Midnight here and Heart of the Country here.

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Cassadee Pope

Cassadee Pope

The Voice‘s Season 3 winner Cassadee Pope is working on a reality series with CMT, titled The Cassadee Pope Project, which will offer a behind-the-scenes look at Pope’s journey from musical competition winner to star.

No. 1 Party: The Band Perry's 'Better Dig Two'

Pictured (L-R): Larga Vista Music's Stephanie Cox; Bigger Picture's Jeff Carlton; Little Blue Egg's Robin Palmer; ASCAP's Robert Filhart; Shane McAnally; Brandy Clark; Trevor Rosen; The Band Perry's Neil, Kimberly and Reid Perry; Dann Huff; BMLG's Scott Borchetta and Jimmy Harnen. Photo by Fred Breedon.

Pictured (L-R): Larga Vista Music’s Stephanie Cox; Bigger Picture’s Jeff Carlton; Little Blue Egg’s Robin Palmer; ASCAP’s Robert Filhart; Shane McAnally; Brandy Clark; Trevor Rosen; The Band Perry’s Neil, Kimberly and Reid Perry; Dann Huff; BMLG’s Scott Borchetta and Jimmy Harnen. Photo by Fred Breedon.

It may have been a cold Tuesday night (March 5), but there was plenty of heated excitement inside the Hard Rock Cafe as the industry elite gathered to celebrate The Band Perry‘s third No. 1 hit, “Better Dig Two.” Written by Brandy Clark, Shane McAnally and Trevor Rosen, the song is published by Little Blue Egg, Rehits Music, Bigger Picture, and Vista Loma Music.
Hosted by ASCAP’s Robert Filhart, the celebrated chart-topper is the first single from The Band Perry’s upcoming sophomore album Pioneer, slated for an April 2 release. Produced by Dann Huff, “Better Dig Two” is Huff’s 34th No. 1 single.
It was a standing room-only crowd as Exec. VP of Big Machine Label Group Jimmy Harnen shared, “It takes a village to break an act,” adding the song was the band’s highest charting debut at 30 with 91 stations on in its first week. Giving thanks to everyone involved, CEO of BMLG Scott Borchetta told the writers and publishers, “Thank you for a brilliant song. This song just kills us.”
President/Owner of Wrensong, Ree Guyer handed out accolades on behalf of the song publishers and shared, “We had ‘demo-itus’ of this song, but you [Dann Huff] took it to another level.” Sr. Manager Brandi Simms also bestowed honors with the coveted No. 1 medallions from the CMA.
The Band Perry’s Kimberly Perry joined her brothers onstage to thank the incredible team behind their hit adding, “It truly is a sacred relationship between the songwriter and the artist.”
Co-writer Clark gave heartwarming thanks to many including Big Machine VP of A&R, Allison Jones stating, “She has always been a champion of my songs.” Clark received her first cut in 2006 and “Better Dig Two” is her first No. 1 song. Clark said, “I feel more supported than my heart can even hold.” Co-writer Rosen, who signed with Guyer and co-writer McAnally almost 10 years after moving to Nashville, shared, “To get to this point, it requires a lot of people to believe in you.” McAnally joked, “I’m a little bit afraid of Kimberly after the performance of this song,” adding a sincere reflection, “I’ve had an unbelievably blessed year.”

IEBA Names Executive Director

Pictured (L-R): Pam Matthews, Dir. of Strategic Alliances & Operations Candice Davis and Mallori Kirchenschlager

Pictured (L-R): Exec. Dir. Pam Matthews, Dir. of Strategic Alliances and Operations Candice Davis, and Dir. of Events and Membership Mallori Kirchenschlager

Pam Matthews has been appointed the Executive Director of IEBA (International Entertainment Buyers Association). The announcement was made by the trade organization’s Board of Directors. She previously spent seven years at Gaylord Entertainment as General Manager of the historic Ryman Auditorium. During her tenure, the theatre received its National Historic Landmark status, its first Pollstar Theatre of the Year honor, Academy of Country Music Venue of the Year, and IEBA Venue of the Year. In 2006, Billboard magazine ranked Matthews among its “Twenty Top Women in Music.” Prior to that, Matthews spent 12 years with The Judds as Vice President and Treasurer of Wynonna, Inc. and J2K, Inc. Her career began at Mid South Concerts in Memphis, and she landed in Nashville as part of the Pace Concerts team that designed and operated Starwood Amphitheatre.
IEBA Chairman and President of Signature Entertainment Lori Otelsberg comments, “I believe Pam has the greatest vision and ability to continue building on IEBA’s success, while bringing new and creative ways to better our association, and building relationships within the industry to strengthen our reputation as the premier conference for live entertainment.”
Matthews adds, “Opportunities like this don’t come along every day. To be of service to my industry, and to an organization with such a rich history and such a commitment to its members and the community at large, is an honor indeed. It is with genuine excitement that I begin this new adventure.”
Matthews joins IEBA staffer Candice Davis, Director of Strategic Alliances & Operations. 2013 marks Davis’s fifth IEBA Conference and third year as a full-time employee of the association. She plays a vital role in conference planning and is responsible for IEBA Interactive student programs and all aspects of business operations.
Mallori Kirchenschlager is IEBA’s new Director of Events & Membership. She is a Belmont University graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Business and Accounting. She comes to IEBA following five years of experience at Creative Artists Agency, where she was mentored by Rob Light, Head of Music and Managing Partner in Los Angeles, and Marc Dennis in Nashville.
IEBA President and Co-owner of Chicago’s Joe’s Bar Ed Warm says, “We love Mallori’s approach; her ideas are fresh and creative. Her agency experience brings an important perspective. And having a staff member dedicated to the membership represents our dedication to IEBA’s mission statement and to the mutual success of our organization and the industry as a whole.”
The 43rd annual IEBA Conference will take place October 19-22, 2013 at the new Omni Hotel in downtown Nashville.

Aldean Celebrates Two No. 1 Songs

Jason Aldean celebrated not one, but two No. 1 singles yesterday (March 5). First, a crowd of industry members gathered at BMI‘s Nashville office to celebrate “Take A Little Ride.” Accepting honors along with Aldean were the song’s co-writers, Dylan Altman, Rodney Clawson and Jim McCormick. In addition, producer Michael Knox, Broken Bow Records’ Benny Brown, Big Red Toe Music’s Craig Wiseman and Cal IV’s Daniel Hill were part of the commemoration, along with a throng of industry well-wishers.

Pictured (back row, l-r): BMI’s Clay Bradley, producer Michael Knox, Broken Bow Records’ Benny Brown, BMG Chrysalis Music’s Daniel Lee, Big Red Toe Music’s Craig Wiseman and Music of Cal IV’s Daniel Hill; (front row, l-r): Jason Aldean; and co-writers Dylan Altman, Jim McCormick and Rodney Clawson. Photo by Rick Diamond

Pictured (back row, l-r): BMI’s Clay Bradley, producer Michael Knox, Broken Bow Records’ Benny Brown, BMG Chrysalis Music’s Daniel Lee, Big Red Toe Music’s Craig Wiseman and Music of Cal IV’s Daniel Hill; (front row, l-r): Jason Aldean; and co-writers Dylan Altman, Jim McCormick and Rodney Clawson. Photo by Rick Diamond

From there, Aldean headed to ASCAP‘s Nashville office to celebrate the hit “The Only Way I Know” (featuring Luke Bryan and Eric Church). The song’s co-writers David Lee Murphy and Ben Hayslip were on hand for the celebration. Producer Knox, along with representatives of This Music, N2D Publishing Company, and Warner/Chappell were on hand to celebrate.
Pictured (L-R), front row: Jason Aldean, Ben Hayslip, David Lee Murphy and Michael Knox. Back row (l-r): Warner Chappell's B.J. Hill, This Music's Connie Harrington and Tim Nichols, Warner Chappell's Ben Vaughn, This Music's Rusty Gaston and N2D Publishing's Douglas Casmus. Photo: Ed Rode.

Pictured (L-R), front row: Jason Aldean, Ben Hayslip, David Lee Murphy and Michael Knox. Back row (L-R): Warner Chappell’s B.J. Hill, This Music’s Connie Harrington and Tim Nichols, Warner Chappell’s Ben Vaughn, This Music’s Rusty Gaston and N2D Publishing’s Douglas Casmus. Photo: Ed Rode.

Pictured (L-R): Ben Hayslip, Jason Aldean, David Lee Murphy. Photo: Ed Rode.

Pictured (L-R): Ben Hayslip, Jason Aldean, David Lee Murphy. Photo: Ed Rode.


Artist Updates (3-6-13)

Average Joes Entertainment and CMT hosted “Colt Party Live,” an exclusive live stream event with CMT during CRS Week. The 90-minute show featured performances by Average Joes Artists including JB and the Moonshine Band, Montgomery Gentry, The LACS, JJ Lawhorn, LoCash Cowboys and Colt Ford.

Pictured (L-R): Stacey Cato, CMT, Manager, Music Strategy; Brian Bayley, CMT Music Strategy; AJE's Colt Ford; Shannon Houchins, CEO/Average Joes Entertainment and  Charles R. (Randy) Cain, Project Portfolio Director, Viacom Media Networks

Pictured (L-R): Stacey Cato, CMT, Manager, Music Strategy; Brian Bayley, CMT Music Strategy; AJE’s Colt Ford; Shannon Houchins, CEO/Average Joes Entertainment; and Charles R. (Randy) Cain, Project Portfolio Director, Viacom Media Networks

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Kimberly Schlapman

Kimberly Schlapman

Little Big Town’s Kimberly Schlapman will kick off a second season of Kimberly’s Simply Southern on GAC on Saturday (March 9). Guests this season will include Josh Turner, Martina McBride, Craig Morgan, Sunny Sweeney, Ashton Shepherd, Jerrod Niemann, Dustin Lynch and model Niki Taylor.
“Cooking has always been Kimberly’s passion, and our Great American Country audience also loves to see her in the field hunting for treasures as well as cooking in the kitchen so the series combines the best of both worlds,” says Sarah Trahern, senior vice president and general manager, Great American Country.

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CMT hosted its upfront event at the Times Center in Manhattan, where the network announced the addition of four new series, four returning series and a variety of projects in development and the newly-created News & Docs division. CMT also announced that the CMT Music Awards will air live from Nashville on June 5. The event included a four-song set from Sheryl Crow, featuring her current single “Easy” and more material from her latest album.

sheryl crow new york city

Pictured (L-R): Brian Philips (CMT President), Sheryl Crow, John Esposito (President, Warner Music Nashville), Peter Strickland (EVP & General Manager, Warner Music Nashville). Photo credit: PictureGroup

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Craig Morgan

Craig Morgan will travel to Sweden in April to participate in the sixth annual Fjallraven Polar, a 200-mile dog sled excursion above the Arctic Circle. The five-day adventure will take place April 9-13. Morgan will be among 20 people from 10 countries who will participate. The trip will journey from the Norwegian shores of the Arctic Ocean (Signaldalen, Norway) to the mountaintops of Sweden (Jukkasjarvi, Swedish Lapland), pulled along by huskies. Morgan will learn to drive and care for his own team of dogs, to pitch a tent and survive in snow and sub-zero temperatures.
“Everyone would agree I have been a daredevil all my life,” says Morgan. “I love to travel to new places and will try just about anything, so when Fjallraven invited me to join them for the Polar, I said ‘Yes’ without giving it a second thought.” Morgan will also get to experience the Northern Lights and visit with the Sami people, the indigenous people of Sweden. He will even grow a full beard to protect his face during the expedition.

SESAC Presents Christian Music Awards

Pictured (left to right): SESAC's Senior Director, Writer/Publisher Relations John Mullins, Jason Ingram, SESAC's Vice President, Writer/Publisher Relations Tim Fink and SESAC's Senior Vice President, Writer/Publisher relations Trevor Gale. Photo: Ed Rode

Pictured (L-R): SESAC’s Senior Director, Writer/Publisher Relations John Mullins; Jason Ingram; SESAC’s Vice President, Writer/Publisher Relations Tim Fink; and SESAC’s Senior Vice President, Writer/Publisher Relations Trevor Gale. Photo: Ed Rode

SESAC named Jason Ingram Christian Songwriter of the Year at ceremonies held last night (March 5) at Hillwood Country Club in Nashville. Sony/ATV Timber Publishing was honored as SESAC’s Christian Publisher of the Year. The awards recognize activity for songwriters and publishers in 2012.
Ingram continued to impress with his profound and prolific work in 2012 with hits “All For You” by Mikeschair, “Forever Reigh” by One Sonic Society, “Good To Be Alive” by Jason Gray, “Our God’s Alive” by Andy Cherry, “White Flag” by Passion (featuring Chris Tomlin) and “You Are I Am” by MercyMe.
Other SESAC award winners included Christian songsmiths Cary Barlowe, Timothy Skipper, Juan OteroJamie Grace and more.
Songwriter Seth Mosley stood out during the evening festivities, taking home an impressive 12 performance awards for songs “All Things Possible” by Mikeschair, “Fighter” by Manafest and “Outta My Mind” by Anthem Light, among others.
Several acclaimed artists took the stage to offer performances including cutting-edge group Capital Kings, Mark Shultz singing the award winning “All Things Possible,” and Plumb offering new single, “Need You Now (How Many Times).”
SESAC also took the opportunity to salute the No. 1 songs that topped Billboard’s Christian charts in 2012. Over 30 songs were acknowledged at the awards dinner which was hosted by SESAC’s Tim Fink and John Mullins. 

LifeNotes: Dr. Timmy Tappan

Timothy Tappan

Timmy Tappan

A memorial service to celebrate the life of long-time Belmont University College of Entertainment and Music Business faculty member Dr. Timmy Tappan will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday (March 9) at Ocean Way Studio (1200 17th Ave. South). As Tappan’s friends and family discussed the service, they decided that suits and ties would not be appropriate as Tappan rarely wore them. At the request of friends and family, attendees are invited to wear Hawaiian shirts for the service.
In honor of Tappan’s life and commitment to students, a memorial fund has been set up in his name. Memorial gifts can be made to:
Office of Development, Fidelity Hall 105
Belmont University
1900 Belmont Blvd.
Nashville, TN 37212
Or online at
Tappan passed on Sunday from the effects of a heart attack. He began teaching in the Music Business program in the early 1990s as an adjunct instructor and joined the full-time faculty in 1998 as an assistant professor.
Prior to his career at Belmont he had a long and successful musical career where he worked for Bobby Goldsboro as his musical director and producer; wrote songs recorded by Mac Davis, Reba McEntire, Loretta Lynn, Crystal Gayle, Mickey Gilley, Faith Hill, Trisha Yearwood, John Denver, Kathie Lee Gifford, Mike Love and the Beach Boys and Michael Martin Murphy. Tappan was musical director of the TV shows Marty Robbins’ Spotlight, Nashville on the Road and The Bobby Goldsboro Show. He wrote and produced advertising music for KFC, Hawaiian Tropic, Toyota, Coca Cola, Hanes, Minute Maid, the Arbor Day Foundation and Build-a-Bear; and arranged TV music for Kenny Rogers, B.J. Thomas, Dolly Parton, Dave Loggins, Bobbi Gentry, Glen Campbell and Henry Mancini. Tappan earned two Gold Records and a No. 1 country award for his song “Fool’s Gold” recorded by artist Lee Greenwood.
Tappan earned his B.S. in Education from Ball State University, his M.Ed. from Belmont University and his Ed.D. at Trevecca Nazarene University.
He is survived by wife Tama; brother Tom Tappan; step-son Ned Robertson; and step-daughter Kristen House and grandchildren, Holden, Shephard, and Harper House; and daughters Kerri Tappan Egbert; Kim Tappan McClain; Kristan Tappan Mashburn; and grandchildren Kristen Brewer, Samantha Novachek, Shelby and Alli Mashburn; Caroline, Mary Kate and Jake McClain; John Gray and Nicholas Egbert; and two great-grand children Emma and Aerie Belt.

Benefit News

PrintThe BirdHouse Thing, an annual fundraiser for the W.O Smith Music School, will be held Tuesday, March 12 from 5:30-8 p.m. at the school. As in the past, there will be silent and live auctions of birdhouses and other unique art created by Rob Hendon, Bob McGill, and Barbara Coon. Gift packages up for bid include tickets to Bonnaroo, Austin City Limits, Lollapalooza, CMA Music Festival, a private chef experience with local restaurateur Arnold Myint, and a private cocktail party hosted by Suzy Wong’s House of Yum. Tickets are $50 each and may be purchased at
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Better Than Ezra, the platinum rock band fronted by Nashville-based songwriter Kevin Griffin, will perform a concert to raise money for the Montessori School of Franklin’s arts and music programs on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at The Cannery Ballroom in Nashville. Special guests include David Cook and Emerson Hart.
VIP tickets are available for $125 each and include open bar, hors d’oeuvres and the concert. General admission tickets for the concert are available in advance for $40, and $50 at the door. Tickets available via Ticketweb.

EOne Enters Clear Channel Agreement for Artist Payouts

CCE1Entertainment One (eOne), the largest independent music distributor in North America, recently announced an agreement with Clear Channel to share revenue from digital and broadcast radio.
“Innovative partnerships like this support a robust and sustainable model for our industry, where artists, fans, labels, distributors, radio and fans all prosper,” said Bob Pittman, CEO of Clear Channel. “In eOne, we have found a partner with an extraordinary range of successful music who understands this and the immense value terrestrial and digital radio provide to artists, labels, and the industry at large.”
eOne Music produces, distributes, licenses and promotes more than 45,000 tracks across a range of genres including rock, rap, classical and country. Nashville artists include Bucky Covington and Shooter Jennings, among others. Since its inception, eOne Music has charted more than 100 albums, more than any other American independent label.
The agreement follows several recent, similar arrangements from Clear Channel with Big Machine Label Group, Glassnote Entertainment Group, DashGo, rpm Entertainment, Robbins Entertainment and Naxos.

Brice, Houser and Niemann to Headline 'Country on the Beach Party'

partyatthebeachFor the fifth year in a row, country music will come together on the scenic beaches of Key West, Fla. to benefit the music industry’s largest foundation that funds leukemia, cancer and AIDS research: the T.J. Martell Foundation.
Long-time friends and songwriting buddies Lee Brice, Randy Houser and Jerrod Niemann will triple-headline the final night of Country On The Beach, as duo Montgomery Gentry hosts and GAC’s Headline Country’s Storme Warren emcees. Country music fans are invited to attend and get an up-close-and-personal experience with their favorite country stars as they let loose in one of Florida’s most popular vacation spots.
“We call the growing gang of fans who attend our annual tropical reunions ‘the world’s largest dysfunctional family,’” Warren states lightheartedly.  “Now that we’re adding Lee, Randy and Jerrod in to the mix, that family just got a whole lot more dysfunctional. The hits will be flying from the stage. I can’t wait!”
Tickets are available by visiting and proceeds from the weekend’s auctions and special excursions will benefit the foundation. Meet-and-greets with the artists will be available, and fans can expect a laid-back environment where a few “surprise” off-the-cuff acoustic performances are never out of the ordinary.