Tim McGraw's 'Sundown Heaven Town 2014 Tour' Coming in May

tim mcgraw lookin for that girl111Tim McGraw will crisscross the country this summer on his headlining Sundown Heaven Town 2014 Tour in May. Fans can purchase tickets beginning Jan. 24 in select cities as part of Live Nation’s Country Megaticket.
Official tour dates on the 30+ city tour will be released at a later date. McGraw’s latest single, “Lookin’ For That Girl,” was sent to radio today (Jan. 13).
“This last year was unbelievable, and I don’t have any plans to let off the gas now. We didn’t want to waste any time getting new music out,” said McGraw. “With every album, my approach is to push a few of my own boundaries and try things I’ve never done before. It was hard to choose a lead single off this project because I really felt like we had six or seven good options. I kept coming back to ‘Lookin For That Girl’ because even though it may be a little different for me sonically, I couldn’t get it out of my head!”
Sacramento, Calif.
Mountain View, Calif.
San Diego
Irvine, Calif.
Cleveland, Ohio
Hartford, Conn.
Washington, D.C.
Virginia Beach, Va.
Charlotte, N.C.
Raleigh, N.C.
St. Louis
West Palm Beach, Fla.
Tampa, Fla.
Brooklyn, Mich.
St. Clairsville, Ohio
Toronto, ON
Salt Lake City
Albuquerque, N.M.

CMA's Keep The Music Playing Concert To Feature Eric Paslay

Keep the Music Playing logoSome of Nashville’s most talented students will perform during the Country Music Association‘s fifth annual Keep The Music Playing All Stars Concert, slated for Tuesday, Jan. 28 at 6 p.m. The event will be held at the CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, and will be hosted by EMI Nashville artist Eric Paslay.
“CMA’s support of music education is so important and I am honored to be part of this special event,” said Paslay. “Music was such a huge part of my childhood and I was lucky to have teachers and family who encouraged me. I can’t wait to see these talented students perform.”
The event will feature performances from five Nashville school groups including Hillwood High School Wind Ensemble; Hull-Jackson Montessori Strings; Hume-Fogg Academic Magnet and Martin Luther King Academic Magnet School Strings; John F. Kennedy Middle School Choir and Concert Band; and the McGavock High School Capital Sounds Show Choir.
“This concert is all about celebrating the next generation of musicians,” said Sarah Trahern, CMA Chief Executive Officer. “It is a special night made possible by the hundreds of artists who performed at the 2013 CMA Music Festival for free. These children are able to enjoy a first-class music education program because of the generosity of our artist community and the commitment of The CMA Foundation to support music education in our schools.”
Since 2006, proceeds from CMA Music Festival have been donated to Keep the Music Playing to provide Metro Nashville Public Schools with musical instruments and music labs. CMA has donated more than $7.6 million to Keep the Music Playing, which includes $6.5 million sent directly to Metro Nashville Public Schools.
Watch Eric Paslay’s Keep the Music Playing announcement below:

Clear Channel Extends Pittman's Contract

Bob Pittman

Bob Pittman

CC Media Holdings has extended the contract of Chairman and CEO Bob Pittman for an additional five-year term. Pittman joined Clear Channel in November 2010 as Chairman of Media and Entertainment Platforms. He became the CEO in 2011 and added the Chairman responsibilities in 2013.
The company also announced that John Hogan, Chairman and CEO of Clear Channel Media and Entertainment, is retiring. He has been awarded the title of Chairman emeritus of Clear Channel Media and Entertainment. Hogan joined Clear Channel in 1999 when the company acquired Jacor Communications, where he was Sr. VP of Radio. He became President and CEO of Clear Channel Radio in 2002. He was named Chairman and CEO of Clear Channel Media and Entertainment in 2012.
Clear Channel Media and Entertainment will now report directly to Pittman and Clear Channel’s President and Chief Financial Officer, Rich Bressler. William Eccleshare continues as CEO of Clear Channel Outdoor and reports to Pittman.

Uber Car Service Comes To Nashville

uber11Nashville has welcomed Uber car transportation service, which offers curbside pickup. Users of the UberX or UberBLACK services download the Uber app to their smartphones, create an account and use it to order a ride and to pay for the pickup with a credit card. Within minutes, a vehicle with a personal driver arrives to transport users to their destination. Riders do not pay money directly to the driver, who collects from Uber after the company deducts a 20 percent commission.
UberBLACK, which has been used by music industry executives in New York and Los Angeles, allows riders to get curbside pickup in a black sedan.
Mayor Karl Dean, Chairman Ronnie Steine, and the Nashville Metro Council adopted changes that eliminate the $45 minimum fare and a mandatory 30-minute wait time for sedan rides, allowing for the new service to take root in Nashville. The price cuts allow for rate comparable to taxi rides.
Sample rates include:
12South to LP Field: $12
Vandy to Green Hills Mall: $17
Ryman Auditorium to Opryland: $33
The base fare for an UberX car is $2.19 plus .20 per minute. Minimum fare is $4.80 and there is a $10 cancellation fee. Sample cars include Toyota Camry, Dodge Grand Caravan, and Honda Accord.
The base fare for an UberBLACK car is $5.95 plus .30 per minute. Minimum fare is $13 and there is a $10 cancellation fee. Sample cars include Lincoln Town Car Signature, Chrysler Aspen, and Infiniti M35X.
For more information, visit uber.com.

Touring Business Boomed in 2013

Swift performs in Nashville in 2013.

Swift performs in Nashville in 2013.

The North American touring business hit an all-time high last year, bringing in $5.1 billion in revenue, according to new data from Pollstar. This is a significant boost from $1.7 billion in 2000.
The touring trade magazine ranked the Top 100 tours in North America last year. Compared to 2012, the number of tickets sold on those outings was up 9.2 percent since 2012, or 3.37 million, for a total of 40.07 million. Those tours brought in a record high of $2.79 billion, a 10.3 percent increase year over year. The average price of a ticket was $69.52, up only 1.1 percent.
Taylor Swift beat her own 2011 record to become the top grossing Country tour in history, raking in $112.7 million in 2013. Her outing, promoted by The Messina Group, was also the top grossing North American tour last year.
Below is a list of Country stars and their 2013 concert gross totals, from Pollstar’s Top 200 list. For the full list and details including ticket price, tickets sold, number of shows and agency, visit pollstarpro.com.
In related news, Pollstar Live is being held outside L.A. or Las Vegas for the first time when it takes place in Nashville from Feb. 19-21 at the Omni.
Taylor Swift— 112.7 million
Kenny Chesney— 90.9
Jason Aldean— 51
Luke Bryan— 44.4
Zac Brown Band— 43.1
George Strait— 40.9
Miranda Lambert— 34.2
Rascal Flatts— 29.8
Tim McGraw— 27.2
Carrie Underwood— 26.3
Brad Paisley— 25.3
Keith Urban— 20.4
Blake Shelton— 19.5
Willie Nelson— 14.2
Toby Keith—12.9
Florida Georgia Line— 8.3
Alabama— 6.5
Eric Church— 6.1
Brantley Gilbert— 5.3
Darius Rucker— 5.2
Reba— 4.9

Strait Kicks Off Final Leg Of Tour

Strait and Aldean

Pictured (L-R): George Strait and Jason Aldean

Last week, Country icon and CMA Entertainer of the Year George Strait kicked off the final leg of his The Cowboy Rides Away Tour at CenturyLink Center in Bossier City, La. Strait played to a massive audience of 13,957 attendees and broke his own previous record for highest grossing show of all time at that venue.
Strait performed several hits, including “Fool Hearted Memory” alongside special guest Jason Aldean, “Amarillo By Morning,” “Check Yes Or No” and “I Got A Car,” which is currently at No. 16 on MusicRow’s CountryBreakout Chart. Continuing his partnership with the Military Warriors Support Foundation, Strait teamed up with Lieutenant General Leroy Cisco, U.S. Army (Retired) to present the keys to a home to U.S. Army Specialist Douglas Michael Edds and wife Tanya Edds.
The Cowboy Rides Away Tour will include shows throughout the country and guest performances by several big names. On March 21, Strait will play Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena with special guest Sheryl Crow. On June 7, 2014, Strait will play his final tour date in Arlington, Texas with special guests Aldean, Alan Jackson, Crow, Vince Gill and more.
For more information, visit georgestrait.com.

Industry Ink (1/13/14)

Country Radio Seminar has added three panels to the CRS 2014 agenda. “Amplify Your Average Quarter Hour with Word-of-Mouth,” “Brand Like A Rock Star” and “Time Management in the Digital Age” are newly released educational presentations that have been added to the three-day event.
During “Brand Like A Rock Star” (Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014, from 9:00-9:50 a.m.), Steve Jones will speak on the keys to branding businesses, based around his bestseller book, Brand Like a Rock Star. Andrew Curran (President of DMR/Interactive) and Fletcher Keyes (Program Director for Today’s Q106/WWQM in Madison, Wis.) will co-host the panel “Amplify Your AQH with Word-of-Mouth,” (Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014, from 4:00 – 5:00 p.m.), which includes discussion on how Country stations are empowering the audience to generate new levels of engagement and success. The session “Time Management in the Digital Age” (Friday, Feb. 21, 2014, from 9:00 – 9:50 a.m.) will focus on career coaching, management skills and working efficiently in the radio and recording industries. President/CEO of Petra Coach, Andy Bailey, will lead the presentation.
CRS 2014 will be held Feb. 19 – 21, 2014, in downtown Nashville, Tenn. For more information, visit countryradioseminar.com.

• • •

sugar hill records1Megan McNair is taking over public relations duties at Sugar Hill Records, effective immediately. McNair can be reached at [email protected] or 615-465-6763.
Sugar Hill’s previous public relations director, Jess Draper, has accepted a position outside the music industry. She can be reached at [email protected].

                    • • •

the rowBeginning on Monday, Jan. 20, Nashville restaurant The Row will begin offering breakfast options Monday through Friday (brunch is already offered on Saturdays and Sundays) from 6:30 a.m. until 11 a.m.
“When it comes to breakfast in Midtown, there just aren’t many options,” says founder Kelly Black. “We wanted a menu that celebrates southern favorites like steak & eggs & fried chicken & biscuits. We also wanted to add healthier options like free range eggs, steel cut oatmeal, multigrain pancakes & parfait to give fresh choices on kick starting your day. Who said southern couldn’t be healthy?”
For more information, visit therownashville.com.

• • •

lamon records``MTS Management Group and Americana/Alt-country singer-songwriter, Jiggley Jones, have announced Jones’ signing with Lamon Records Nashville.
Recording for Jones’ first album with the label will begin in January. It will be the follow-up to his 2012 EP, No Spring Chicken.

Joshua Scott Jones Prepares Solo Album, Single

JSJ_HONK_Single11“Honk (If You’re Tonky),” the debut solo single from Steel Magnolia’s Joshua Scott Jones, will make its radio debut on Sirius XM’s The Highway on Saturday, Jan. 11.
Jones, who wrote many of the tunes for Steel Magnolia’s debut album, co-wrote “Honk (If You’re Tonky)” with songwriter Josh Alford. Jones’ debut solo album, titled The Healing, will release later this year. The project is a personal and emotional account of the singer’s journey since he and Steel Magnolia partner Meghan Linsey won CMT’s music competition Can You Duet in 2009.
“Honk (If You’re Tonky),” is available for purchase at iTunes, Amazon, eMusic, Rhapsody, Zune, Spotify, Google Music, and other online outlets.

BMI to Present 3rd Annual Crested Butte Festival


BMI will present the third annual Crested Butte Songwriters Festival on Friday, Jan. 17 – Saturday, Jan. 18 in Crested Butte, Colo. The show will be hosted by Storme Warren.

Performances include Dean Dillon, Scotty Emerick, Kree Harrison, Rodney Clawson, Nicolle Galyon, Kendell Marvel, Casey Beathard, Due West, Stephanie Lane Stephenson, Tyler Hansen, Steve Snyder and Lizzy Plotkin.
A benefit concert with all performers will be held on Saturday night, Jan. 18. Tickets are available at Center for the Arts (970-349-7847), The Toggery in Gunnison (970-641-0844), and The Adventure Center in Mountaineer Square (970-349-4554).
Friday, Jan. 17
6 p.m. at Talk of the Town
Lineup to be announced
8 p.m. at The Eldo
Lineup to be announced
10 p.m. at Kochevars
Lineup to be announced
Admission is a $5 donation for entry for all Friday night shows
7:30 p.m. at Center for the Arts
All performers – schedule to be announced

Bush, Steele, Lauderdale Join 30A Songwriters Festival

30a songwriters festival111On Jan. 17-19, the 30A Songwriters Festival will feature more than 150 songwriters and more than 200 performances at 20 venues along Florida’s scenic Highway 30A in South Walton, Fla.
This year’s event will feature Kristian Bush (Sugarland), Jeffrey Steele, Jerry Douglas, Jim Lauderdale, Loudon Wainwright III, Ani DiFranco, Robert Randolph and the Family Band, Richard Thompson, Shawn Mullins, John Oates, Rusty Young (Poco), Jonathon Edwards, Jesse Harris, Craig Fuller (Pure Prairie League), John Gorka, Mary Gauthier, James McMurtry, Bob Schneider, Glenn Phillips Band, Matthew Sweet,  Jimbo Mathus (Squirrel Nut Zippers) and Tinsley Ellis.
Highlights of the festival include two days of headlining concerts at the outdoor amphitheater at Gulf Place, VIP dinners at WaterSound Beach Club (with Chef Joe Truex of Watershed and singer-songwriter Bush), Grayton Bar & Grill (with Chef Steven Satterfield from Miller Union and singer-songwriter Mullins), a full schedule of in-store appearances and CD signings at Central Square Records, and more.
Festival weekend passes are now available for $190 and can be purchased at 30asongwritersfestival.com, or locally in South Walton, Fla. at the Cultural Arts Alliance office and at Central Square Records in Seaside, Fla.