Lucy Hale Premieres Single On SiriusXM's The Highway

    Pictured (L-R): Jay Bradley, Director of Strategic Marketing/Promotion (Bigger Picture), Kimmie Trosdahl, Senior Director of Promotion/Secondary Charts (Bigger Picture), Michael Powers, President (Bigger Picture), John Marks, Sr. Director of Country Programming (SiriusXM) , Lucy Hale, SiriusXM host Storme Warren, Mike Daly, Director, A&R (Disney Music Group), Matt Corbin, VP National of Promotion (Bigger Picture). Photo credit: Rick Diamond/Getty Images

Pictured (L-R): Jay Bradley, Director of Strategic Marketing/Promotion (Bigger Picture); Kimmie Trosdahl, Senior Director of Promotion/Secondary Charts (Bigger Picture); Michael Powers, President (Bigger Picture); John Marks, Sr. Director of Country Programming (SiriusXM); Lucy Hale; SiriusXM host Storme Warren; Mike Daly, Director, A&R (Disney Music Group); Matt Corbin, VP National of Promotion (Bigger Picture). Photo credit: Rick Diamond/Getty Images

Singer and Pretty Little Liars actress Lucy Hale premiered her new single “You Sound Good To Me,” from her upcoming debut album earlier this week during a live performance on The Highway, channel 59, from SiriusXM’s Music City Theater in Nashville. The special will be rebroadcast on The Highway on Saturday, Jan. 11 at 8 a.m. ET and Sunday, Jan. 12 at 11 a.m. ET. Written by Ashley Gorley, Luke Laird and Hillary Lindsey, the single is set to hit Country radio later this month.
Hale celebrated the television premiere of her first music video “You Sound Good To Me” today (Jan. 8) on CMT and CMT Pure. Directed by Philip Andelman, the video was filmed in California. Hale’s Country debut album is due this spring on DMG Nashville/Bigger Picture Group.

Artist Updates (1/8/14)


Brad Paisley

Brad Paisley will perform during tonight’s (Jan. 8) People’s Choice Awards, which airs beginning at 9 p.m. ET live from the Nokia Theatre L.A. in Los Angeles on CBS.
Paisley will perform his latest single, “The Mona Lisa.”


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buzz cason11

Buzz Cason

Plowboy Records has signed Buzz Cason and will release his new album Troubadour Heart on Feb. 4. Cason’s career includes the founding of Nashville’s first rock band (The Casuals), singing backup for Elvis Presley, Kenny Rogers and Roy Orbison, and writing songs recorded by The Beatles, Pearl Jam and U2.
Recorded at Cason’s Creative Workshop studio in Nashville, the album features co-writing and performance contributions from Dan Penn, Bobby Keys and Anthony Crawford.

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Lee Brice recently performed a surprise concert during the “Get Hyped For Halftime” show in Milligan, Neb., as part of Pepsi’s efforts to get America excited about the super-sized Super Bowl Halftime Show.
Main Street in Milligan was transformed into a party destination (complete with marching band) for football and music fans.

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Lee Brice performs in Milligan, Neb.

Swindell's "Chillin' It" Certified Gold

cole swindell11Cole Swindell‘s debut single, “Chillin’ It,” has become the first single in all genres to garner a Gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 2014. The single has sold more than 600,000 copies.
Swindell’s self-titled debut album will release on Warner Bros. Records on Feb. 18. Swindell is preparing to join Luke Bryan’s That’s My Kind of Night Tour, beginning Jan. 16 in Columbus, Ohio.

Weekly Register: Bryan Crashes Back To No.1

luke bryan crash my party album cover1111Although the nation’s temperatures are rising, sales are experiencing their own polar vortex in the first week of 2014, with overall album sales down 43 percent from last week and Country album sales down 54 percent week over week.
Luke Bryan’s Crash My Party (Capitol Nashville) is the top Country album this week (No. 7 overall), selling another 43k units (1.5 million RTD) and unseating Garth Brooks from the top of the chart. The top overall album is aptly Frozen: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Various Artists, selling 132k units this week and 306k units RTD.
Overall album sales are down 13.9 percent compared to first week in 2013, while Country album sales are down 17.5 percent.
Bryan’s takeover of the chart continues with “Drink A Beer” as the top Country track this week (No. 29 overall), selling 65k units this week (485k RTD). The top overall track remains Pitbull and Ke$ha’s “Timber,” selling 301k units this week (2.2 million RTD).
albums (1)tracksOverall track sales are down 11.5 percent from same week last year, while Country track sales are down 17.6 percent, competing against Taylor Swift’s release of “I Knew You Were Trouble,” which sold 326k units (2.3 million RTD) around the same time last year.

Nielsen’s 2013 Roundup

Nielsen Entertainment has released its report reviewing sales in 2013. The report notes that streaming rose 32 percent with 118.1 billion streams in 2013. Nielsen’s Sr. VP, Industry Insights David Bakula commented on the rise in streaming, saying “With more than 118 billion streams in 2013 reported by our data providers, which is the approximate revenue equivalent of 59 million albums purchased, the industry remains vibrant as consumption continues to change and expand.”
The report noted that sales across the board – total album sales, overall music sales, physical music sales, digital track sales – were down in comparison with 2012. Country also saw a decline; whereas 14.2 percent of albums sold in 2012 were Country,  a slightly less 13.8 percent of the albums sold in 2013 were Country.
There are no major debuts next week, but the following week will see releases from Jennifer Nettles, Jon Pardi, Rosanne Cash and Mary Chapin Carpenter.

Songwriters Line Up For Bob Kingsley's Acoustic Alley at CRS

CRS2014-LogoFor the third consecutive year, Bob Kingsley’s Acoustic Alley will return to Country Radio Seminar on Feb. 20 with an all-star lineup of hit songwriters.
Ben Hayslip, Luke Laird, Shane McAnally, Brandy Clark, Ashley Gorley, Rodney Clawson, Brett James, Matt Jenkins, Rhett Akins and Dallas Davidson are set to perform at the event, which is presented by Bob Kingsley’s Country Top 40 and co-sponsored by SunTrust Bank. Kingsley will host the event.
This year’s Acoustic Alley will be held on Feb. 20 from 7 p.m. until midnight at the Renaissance Hotel’s Belmont Room. Food and beverages will be available. A CRS badge will be required for admittance.
CRS 2014 $499 Regular registration rate expires Jan. 13. On-site registration increases to $599 and is effective Jan. 14. For more information, visit

Signings and Hirings (1/8/14)

Maggie Rose. Photo Credit: Gina Binkley

Maggie Rose. Photo Credit: Gina Binkley

Sweet Talk Publicity has signed artist Maggie Rose for indie public relations representation. The singer joins the boutique company’s artist roster, which includes Florida Georgia Line, Jake Owen, Will Hoge, Frankie Ballard, and more.
Rose recently opened for Gary Allan and Sheryl Crow on the Free & Easy Tour. Rose is currently preparing for the release of her next single from her album Cut To Impress, “Looking Back Now.”

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Kaitlyn Baker

Singer-songwriter Kaitlyn Baker has signed with Silvercreek Records and plans to release her first project for the Nashville-based label this summer.
“Anyone who hears Kaitlyn is blown away,” said CEO Stafond Seago. “She has an amazing voice and songwriting talent, and her stage presence is phenomenal. She’s reminiscent of Carrie Underwood, but has her own style. We think she’s a great artist.”
Baker, 19, is from Pound, Ky. For more information, visit

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Brittney Wilkerson

PLA Media has hired Brittney Wilkerson as Junior Publicist/New Media Coordinator. Wilkerson will be responsible for day-to-day publicity initiatives for PLA clients and will provide graphic design for the social media team. She is a graduate of Troy University.
President/CEO of PLA Media, Pam Lewis says, “I’ve known Brittney for several months and have been impressed with her creativity, pro-active work style and professionalism. Brittney is a welcome asset to the PLA Media team.”

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broken_bow_photo1Broken Bow Records (BBR) Music Group has added Stan Marczewski as Director of Midwest Promotion for Stoney Creek Records. He replaces Jen Joe, who was previously promoted to Director of Creative for the label group.
Marczewski previously worked as Director of Regional Promotion with Streamsound Records. He has also worked as Director of NE & NW Promotion for Rodeowave Entertainment and worked at Sony Music Nashville. Marczewski can be reached at 615-610-2122 and at [email protected].

Cracker Barrel To Release 'Bakersfield: Deluxe Edition'

vince gill paul franklin11

Pictured (L-R): Vince Gill, Paul Franklin

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store® will release Bakersfield: Deluxe Edition, an exclusive and expanded edition of the album from Vince Gill and steel guitarist Paul Franklin, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014.
Gill and Franklin pay tribute to the “Bakersfield” sound by performing songs from two of Bakersfield’s most well-known musicians, Buck Owens and Merle Haggard. Bakersfield: Deluxe Edition will contain four additional songs (14 songs total) and will be available at all Cracker Barrel Old Country Store® locations and online at One of the four additional tracks featured on the deluxe edition is the instrumental “Buckin’ Merle,” which Gill wrote as a tribute to Haggard and Owens and the “Bakersfield” sound.
The digital version of Bakersfield: Deluxe Edition will be available for purchase via iTunes and on Tuesday, Jan. 28.
Full track listing for Bakersfield: Deluxe Edition:
1. “Foolin’ Around”
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Harlan Howard and Buck Owens)
2. “Branded Man”
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Merle Haggard)
3. “Together Again”
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Buck Owens)
4. “The Bottle Let Me Down”
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Merle Haggard)
5. “He Don’t Deserve You Anymore”
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Arty Lange and Buck Owens)
6. “I Can’t Be Myself”
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Merle Haggard)
7. “Nobody’s Fool But Yours”
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Buck Owens)
8. “Holding Things Together”
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Bob Trotten and Merle Haggard)
9. “But I Do”
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Tommy Collins)
10. “The Fightin’ Side of Me”
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Merle Haggard)
11. “Your Tender Loving Care”*
Made Famous by Buck Owens
(Written by Buck Owens)
12. “Buckin’ Merle”*
(Written by Vince Gill)
13. “I Threw Away the Rose”*
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Merle Haggard)
14. “High on a Hilltop”*
Made Famous by Merle Haggard
(Written by Tommy Collins)
(*) Denotes exclusive tracks for the expanded album available through Cracker Barrel Old Country Store®.

Copyright Society Of The South Elects New Board Members

csos11The Copyright Society of the South has elected a new Board of Directors for the 2014 term, as well as officers. The Board is comprised of music publishers, attorneys, administrators and performing rights representatives. Janice Jackson (Travellers Hollow Music LLC), will begin her eighth year tenure as Administrative Director. Richard Frank, Jr. has been named a Lifetime Honorary Director of the Copyright Society of the South.
The new CSOS Board of Directors for 2014:
Chairman of the Board – John Barker, ClearBox Rights
Vice Chairman – Jill Napier, Music Services, Inc.
Secretary – Kele Currier, ASCAP
Treasurer – Denise Stevens, Loeb & Loeb
Board Members
Karl Braun, Hall Booth Smith, P.C.
Amy Cranford, Amy Cranford Consulting
Wendi Crosby, Major Bob Music
Ted Goldthorpe, Sony/ATV Music
Misha Hunke, BMI
John Rolfe, Rolfe Entertainment Law
Lifetime Honorary Director
Richard Frank, Jr.

DisClaimer: Superstar In The Making?

Chris Young

Chris Young

Happy New Year. For the first time in history, I believe, the first “DisClaimer” column of the year actually includes a song that references that moment in time. It is a marvelously written number called “December Thirty One” that earns its writer and singer, Levi Lowrey, a big ol’ DisCovery Award. It is also a free download. Get it.
There no question at all who has the Disc of the Day this week. That honor goes to Chris Young. Now, will somebody please tell me when this format is going to make him the bazillion-selling mega-superstar he deserves to be?
Writer: Wink Keziah; Producers: Wink Keziah/Dale Meyer; Publisher: Nuagatone, ASCAP; Great South (track)
-The lead-off track of Cowbilly, this Texan’s fourth CD, is a toe-tapping trucker’s blue-collar lament. He not only has the coolest name, but he is SO beyond backwoods country that it’s frightening.
Writers: Brantley Gilbert/Brett James/Justin Weaver; Producer: Dann Huff; Publishers: Warner-Tamerlane/Indiana Angel/WB/Songs of Brett/External Combustion/Music of the Corn, BMI/ASCAP; Valory Music
-Okay, it’s the same old lyric — the pick-up truck, the girl in the blue jean cut-offs, the radio turned up, the keg of beer blah, blah, blah. The differences are that this guy has a truly gripping, husky, charismatic singing voice and the tuneful production really rocks. Bro-country dressed up with a little more class than usual.
COLBY DEE/Missed The Exit
Writers: Colby Dee/Jake Etheridge/Lena Stein; Producers: Daniel Dennis/Colby Dee; Publisher: none listed; CD (track)
-She’s tired of playing nice: “I was gonna take the high road, but I missed the exit.” The lyric is better than the monotonic melody, and the rock production style does nothing for me.
Writers: Marv Green/Jason Sellers/Paul Jenkins; Producer: James Stroud; Publishers: Warner-Tamerlane/The Good The Bad The Ugly/Made for This/Sony-ATV Cross Keys/Becky’s Boy, BMI/ASCAP; RCA
-This guy is arguably our finest young Country vocalist. This powerful love song gives him plenty of room to emote. I remain an enormous fan. Play this now.
levi lowrey

Levi Lowrey

LEVI LOWREY/December Thirty One
Writers: Levi Lowrey/Travis Hill; Producers: Matt Mangano/Clay Cook; Publishers: Southern Ground/Abbot’s Creek/Scrambler, BMI/ASCAP; Southern Ground
-Lowery is the co-writer behind the Zac Brown Band hits “Colder Weather” and “The Wind.” In advance of his album’s release, you can get a free download of this song at his website. It’s an evocative ode to romantic optimism sung in an engaging folkie tenor. The production is somewhat busy, but there’s real promise here.
RAY BENSON/A Little Place
Writer: Ray Benson; Producers: Lloyd Maines/Sam Lightnin’ Siefert/Ray Benson; Publisher: Asleep at the Wheel, BMI; Bismeaux (track)
-Ray Benson’s solo outing is quite a departure from the western-swing music he makes as the leader of Asleep at the Wheel. This title tune, for instance, is a tender ballad that is downright philosophical. A gentle and supremely listenable revelation.
Writer: Mark McKinney; Producer: Mark McKinney; Publisher: none listed; CTK Entertainment
-It is well written, but the arrangement plods like a crippled mule.
Writers: Chuck Wicks/Andy Dodd/Tiffany Vartanyan; Producers: Chuck Wicks/Andy Dodd/Ilya Toshinsky; Publishers: WB/CEW/Shady Hill/Seven Peaks/Dodd/Not Your Average Girl/Silva Tone, ASCAP; Blaster
-Wicks rose to fame with 2007’s “Stealing Cinderella.” This comeback single has wistful verses that softly yearn to recapture romance, alternated with quasi-shouted choruses that are just a little too loud. Even so, the thing has polish, panache and professionalism overall.
Writer: Brandon Rhyder; Producers: Matt Powell/Brandon Rhyder; Publisher: Dogwood Hill, BMI; BR (track)
-The title tune to this fellow’s CD is relaxed and jaunty in praise of the simple things in life. It’s pretty basic, but every now and then, less can be more.
RICK BABB/Startin’ From Scratch
Writers: Rick Babb/J.M. Taylor; Producer: Milo Deering; Publisher: Royal T (no performance rights listed); Old Hat (track)
-The songwriting is fairly simplistic and his voice isn’t particularly distinguished, but the instrumentation surrounding him is an audio wonderland of echoey, ringing guitars and chiming steel.

iHeartRadio Country Festival Debuts In March

iHeartCountryFestival2014Clear Channel Media and Entertainment announced today (Jan. 8) the first-ever iHeartRadio Country FestivalLuke Bryan, Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line, Eric Church, Lady Antebellum, Hunter Hayes, Carrie Underwood, Jake Owen and Dan + Shay are on the line up for the event at Austin’s Frank Erwin Center on Sat., March 29. Nationally-syndicated Country music personality Bobby Bones will host.
“The response to our country performers at the last three iHeartRadio Music Festivals was so incredible we decided to create an entire show just for them,” said John Sykes, President of Clear Channel Entertainment Enterprises. “It will be a country fan’s dream and a testament to the power of country music and recognition of the stature of these artists.”
Clear Channel will launch a six weeklong nationwide promotion Mon., Jan. 13, giving fans the opportunity to win a trip to Austin for the festival. The promotion will run across more than 120 Clear Channel Country radio stations as well as on iHeartRadio. Tickets go on sale to the general public Jan. 18 at 12 p.m. EST.
“Country music is experiencing an unprecedented explosion of popularity with music fans across America, and there’s no better way to celebrate that than by building on the incredible success of our annual 2-day iHeartRadio Music Festival and creating the biggest dedicated multiplatform event ever featuring the biggest stars in Country music,” said Tom Poleman, President of National Programming Platforms for Clear Channel Media and Entertainment. “The core of our business is the bond our local stations have with our listeners and an important part of that is to give them extraordinary events no one else can provide.”
The iHeartRadio Country Festival will stream live on Clear Channel’s Country music radio stations in the local markets and on More artists will be announced soon.
Clear Channel Media and Entertainment serves 150 markets through 840 owned radio stations.