Artist Pics: Dustin Lynch Gets RIAA Plaque, Chris Young Visits ACM, ASCAP Hosts Showcase

Dustin Lynch Surprised With Platinum Plaque

Broken Bow’s Dustin Lynch was surprised by the RIAA on Friday afternoon (June 26) with a Platinum plaque for his multi-week No. 1 single “Where It’s At.”

Lynch served as a special guest panelist alongside RIAA Chairman & CEO Cary Sherman and Broken Bow VP of Promotion Lee Adams for the first “RIAA Live” event of summer 2015 at its D.C. headquarters. The audience of music industry and political tastemakers was also treated to an acoustic performance.

“What a dream come true!” shared Lynch. “I have an incredible team of people that believe in me and my music and work so hard and spend time away from their families…this is theirs as much as mine. Big thanks to everyone at country radio that believed in this song and chapter 2 of my music!”

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Dustin Lynch and RIAA Chairman & CEO Cary Sherman. Photo: Daniel Swartz

Chris Young Visits The Academy of Country Music

The Academy of Country Music welcomed RCA Nashville recording artist Chris Young to the office while he was in Los Angeles recently. While at the Academy, Young previewed songs from his upcoming fifth studio album to be released this fall. The lead single, “I’m Comin’ Over,” is currently climbing the charts.

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Pictured (L-R): Paul Barnabee, SVP, Marketing, Sony Music Nashville; Chris Young; Tiffany Moon, ACM Exec.VP /Managing Director; Bob Romeo, ACM CEO; Larry Fitzgerald, Manager, Fitzgerald Hartley Company. Photo: Courtesy of the ACM

ASCAP Hosts June “We Create Music”

ASCAP hosted the June edition of “We Create Music,” its monthly multi-genre showcase held at The Basement. Featured performers included Courtney Drummey, NYC-based singer-songwriter Owen Danoff, Bear Creek Brothers, Kris Hitchcock and Kirsten Arian.


Pictured (L-R): ASCAP’s Ralph Murphy, Kris Hitchcock, Kirsten Arian, Owen Danoff, ASCAP’s Beth Brinker, Courtney Drummey, Bear Creek Brothers’ Dylan Wright and Kevin Vermillion, and ASCAP’s Robert Filhart

Justin Timberlake Invests $4 Million in Leiper’s Fork Property

Jessica Biel with husband Justin Timberlake.

Jessica Biel with husband Justin Timberlake.

Justin Timberlake‘s Los Angeles-based certified public accountant (Michael S. Dreyer of Dreyer Robbins & Associates) was listed as the trustee of a $4 million swath of land near Leiper’s Fork, Tenn., according to The Tennessean.

Philanthropist and preservationist, Aubrey Preston, was listed as seller of the 126.63 acre parcel, from his 244 acres of Williamson County property.

This news comes after Timberlake’s mother and stepfather, Paul and Lynn Harless, paid $2.83 million for a 10,000-square-foot home in Brentwood, Tenn. in December 2014. That home was purchased from Randy Wachtler President/CEO of Warner/Chappell Production Music.

Timberlake, who is married to actress Jessica Biel and recently celebrated the birth of their son Silas Randall, spoke with The Tennessean in late 2013, saying he has friends in the Williamson County area, and that he spends more time in Nashville than people realize.

The land is said to be subject to a conservation agreement through The Land Trust for Tennessee, which generally limits development, notes reporter Getahn Ward for the paper.

Canaan Smith Seeks ‘Hardworking Heroes’ in Georgia Boot Campaign

Canaan Smith

Canaan Smith

Canaan Smith and footwear maker Georgia Boot are teaming up this summer and fall in a new social media campaign.

Giveaways, private shows, Georgia Boots, and meet and greets will be awarded throughout Smith’s tour this year in conjunction with the release of his debut Mercury Nashville project, Bronco.

Beginning in July, the Hardworking Hero campaign will invite consumers to submit a picture of nomination via social media and the website. Smith will also appear in marketing materials for the company as well as pairing with Georgia Boot partner Clint Bowyer Racing for special promotions and events.

“I’m excited to partner with Georgia Boot because I admire their reach to the heart of America through products people rely on daily,” said Smith. “My goal has always been for those same authentic, everyday people to relate to my music because it is grounded in great storytelling from real-life experiences.”

Publishing Ink: Major Bob/Tree Vibez, HoriPro/True Bearing, Warner/Chappell

Major Bob Music Partners With Tree Vibez Music

Jordan Schmidt

Jordan Schmidt

Major Bob Music has announced a creative partnership with Tree Vibez Music, the publishing company recently formed by Florida Georgia Line’s Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard. Through the partnership, they have signed flagship songwriter and producer Jordan Schmidt.

“As a multi-genre focused company, we are very excited about this partnership with Tree Vibez and Jordan,” said Jesse Frasure, VP of Major Bob Music, Inc. “With a background of pop and hip hop and an understanding of the Nashville songwriting craft we are excited to be a part of building his brand.”

Sarah Allison Turner Signs with HoriPro and True Bearing

 Pictured (l-r, front row): Kelly Donley, attorney - Safford Motley, Sarah Allison Turner, Courtney Crist - Hori Pro, (back row) ASCAP's Robert Filhart, Butch Baker - Hori Pro, Lee Krabel - Hori Pro, Tim Stehli - Hori Pro, Blake Chancey - True Bearing Entertainment

Pictured (front row L-R): Kelly Donley, attorney, Safford Motley; Sarah Allison Turner; Courtney Crist, Hori Pro; (back row): ASCAP’s Robert Filhart; and Hori Pro’s Butch Baker, Lee Krabel, Tim Stehli; and True Bearing’s Blake Chancey

ASCAP songwriter Sarah Allison Turner has signed a joint publishing deal with HoriPro Entertainment and True Bearing Entertainment.

True Bearing Entertainment is owned by producer Blake Chancey (The Dixie Chicks, Montgomery Gentry, Little Big Town, Waylon Jennings, Mary Chapin Carpenter).

Originally from Bluefield, West Virginia, Turner graduated with her bachelor’s degree in Music Business from Middle Tennessee State University in 2014. She was selected to be a part of ASCAP’s Guidance from Publishers for Songwriters (GPS) program in 2013.

Warner/Chappell Signs Sam Hatmaker

Warner/Chappell recently signed 16-year-old Knoxville native Sam Hatmaker to a publishing agreement.

sam hatmaker Red Guitar

Sam Hatmaker

Luke Bryan Maps Seventh Annual Farm Tour

luke bryan farm tourLuke Bryan is heading back to the farm this fall for Farm Tour 2015, which kicks off Sept. 3 and runs through mid-October.

This marks the seventh consecutive year Bryan has done the mini-tour, which continues to grow in popularity each year. Last year more than 150,000 fans attended the eight farm dates, breaking the previous year’s record.

A portion of proceeds from the 2015 Farm Tour go to local college scholarships for students from a farming family in the communities where Bryan appears.

Bryan’s major Kick The Dust Up tour visits Nashville’s Vanderbilt Stadium on July 11.

Farm Tour 2015 dates:
Sept. 3 – M&J Farms – Fort Wayne, IN
Oct. 1 – Talon Farm and Winery – Lexington, KY
Oct. 2 – Maple Lane Farms – Knoxville, TN
Oct. 3 – Culler Farms – Columbia, SC
Oct. 7 – Holtcamp Farms – Starkville, MS
Oct. 8 – Twin Creeks Farm – Tuscaloosa, AL
Oct. 9 – Midway at Central Park – Macon, GA
Oct. 10 – MJ Taylor Farms – Valdosta, GA

Big Loud Records To Launch With Pres. Clay Hunnicutt

 Pictured (L-R): Seth England, Big Loud Mountain partner and manager; Joey Moi, Big Loud Mountain partner and producer; Clay Hunnicutt, president of Big Loud Records; Craig Wiseman, Big Loud Mountain partner and award-winning songwriter; Kevin “Chief” Zaruk, Big Loud Mountain partner and veteran manager MEDIA ONLY: Photo: Courtesy of Big Loud Mountain

Pictured (L-R): Seth England, Big Loud Mountain partner and manager; Joey Moi, Big Loud Mountain partner and producer; Clay Hunnicutt, president of Big Loud Records; Craig Wiseman, Big Loud Mountain partner and award-winning songwriter; Kevin “Chief” Zaruk, Big Loud Mountain partner and veteran manager. Photo: Courtesy of Big Loud Mountain

Big Loud Mountain, the partnership between Craig Wiseman, Seth England, Joey Moi and Kevin “Chief” Zaruk, is planning the launch of new division Big Loud Records.

Radio veteran Clay Hunnicutt will join the label as President. Hunnicutt spent more than 15 years with iHeartMedia, most recently serving as EVP & GM/National Programming Platforms.

Additional Big Loud Records staff members will be announced in the coming months.

“We’ve had a vision to expand a label division for some time now, but knew we needed the right quarterback. We couldn’t have partnered with anyone better than Clay Hunnicutt,” said England. “He has laser vision and leadership abilities that blow us away every time we speak to him. Big Loud Records couldn’t be anymore thrilled that he has chosen us in this new phase of his career.”

“There are not many things in this world that would make me want to leave iHeartMedia after 17 years, but the opportunity to start something new with Big Loud Records and these 4 partners was it,” shared Hunnicutt. “It’s a dream team of knowledge, success, and belief that will help power some great music and break new artists. We will work hard to do the right things for the right reasons with the right people!”

England runs the day-to-day operations of Big Loud Mountain, which has management clients including Florida Georgia Line, Chris Lane and Dallas Smith.

Hunnicutt can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at 615.329.1929.

Forty-Thousand Fans Turn Out for New York City’s First Country Festival

FarmboroughCountry took a bite out of the Big Apple last weekend as New York City hosted its first-ever country festival, FarmBorough. Forty-thousand fans took over Randall’s Island Park for the three-day event, which featured headliners Luke Bryan, Brad Paisley, and Dierks Bentley along with Maddie & Tae, Dwight Yoakam, Sturgill Simpson, Charlie Worsham, Kip MooreCanaan Smith, Mickey Guyton, and many more including a Next From Nashville tent highlighting country’s up-and-coming, newest talent.

The country extravaganza packed with food and great music was a collaboration between Live Nation and Founder’s Entertainment, and by all accounts in spite of a bit of rain was a raging success, according to Live Nation President/Country Touring, Brian O’Connell.

“This weekend was a dream come true,” said O’Connell. “It really doesn’t get bigger than New York City and the way that the country community here and those who traveled to get here, took a chance on us and embraced FarmBorough in its first year has astounded me. I can’t say it enough how thankful I am to all the fans and the artists who joined in with me on this.”

“We couldn’t be more thrilled with the success of FarmBorough’s inaugural year,” added Co-founder/Partner at Founders Entertainment, Jordan Wolowitz. “New York City fully embraced the Country community and FarmBorough proved that it’s here to say. We can’t wait for 2016!”

randy houser farmborough

Randy Houser

maddie and tae at farmborough

Maddie and Tae

luke bryan at farmborough

Luke Bryan

dustin lynch at farmborough

Dustin Lynch



T.J. Martell Auctions Off Time With Rob Beckham, Scott Hendricks

TJ MartellIf you’ve been fighting to get some face time with Rob Beckham or Scott Hendricks, here’s a chance to do that and give to a good cause at the same time. The T.J. Martell Foundation is offering up several auction packages on for the next two weeks with all proceeds going to help raise funds for cancer and AIDS research.

Packages available for bidding include a one-hour lunch with Rob Beckham, co-head and partner at WME; a one-on-one consultation with Scott Hendricks, Executive VP/A&R Warner Music Nashville; and a special meet-and-greet experience with Keb Mo including tickets to his first-ever Schermerhorn Symphony Center show in Nashville Aug. 28, a two-night, two-room stay at Embassy Suites, and a $100 gift card to Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville restaurant.

Estimated values of the package experiences are $2000 and up, and bidding will close on July 7. More information can be found at

Apple Music Has Launched, Are You On Board?

apple-musicApple Music, a new streaming service by the technology giant, launches today (Tuesday, June 30).

iOS 8.4 upgrades began at 10:00 a.m. CT. Desktop computers will need to upgrade to the newest version of iTunes. A full version is expected for Android this fall.

A free trial is available for three months, before automatic charges of $9.99/mo. apply for individuals. A family account, available for up to six people, will cost $14.99/mo.

The service debuts after much scrutiny about its royalty payments—most publicized was the Taylor Swift tussle resulting in the pop star’s music being added to the Cupertino, Calif.-based service.

In an interview with BuzzFeed after the Swift ordeal, Apple Senior Vice President Eddy Cue said the royalty rate… “will pay artists on a per stream basis during the free three-month trial. Afterwards, it will pay music owners 71.5 percent of Apple Music’s subscription revenue in the United States. Internationally, the number will fluctuate, but will average out at around 73 percent.”

Features of the subscription streaming service will allow people to freely upload and stream audio, will also offer a global radio station (Beats 1) to kick off at 11:00 p.m. CT, and Siri integration to kickstart listening to “hot songs from 1994” (as an example). The software can scan existing music libraries to add up to 25,000 matches to an iCloud Music Library, providing access on any device where the user is logged in. Offline listening is also key for subway rides or data plan conservation. The app will then let you see what songs have been locally stored.

Officials in Europe and the United States are investigating dealings with music labels for antitrust violations.

Black River Taps Tanya Welch

Tanya Welch

Tanya Welch

Black River Entertainment CEO Gordon Kerr announced today (June 29) the hiring of music industry veteran Tanya Welch as the Sr. Director of Marketing. She will report to Kerr, and begins her new position today.

“What a season of growth for Black River,” said Kerr. “The addition of Tanya and her proven industry experience provides us the opportunity to take another step towards lasting significance in the music industry.”

In her new position, Welch will focus on music-marketing strategies for Black River Entertainment entities including the Black River artist roster, Black River Publishing, and the studios Sound Stage and Ronnie’s Place.

Welch most recently spent more than 20 years with Sony Music Nashville with labels including Epic, Columbia, RCA, Monument, and BNA.

“I’ve watched Black River achieve success led by passion and sound strategy,” said Welch. “I’m thrilled to join Gordon, Greg, and the team as they grow their footprint in a complex but opportunity-laden music landscape and look forward to representing such an amazing family of artists.”

The announcement comes one week after Black River songwriter and recording artist Kelsea Ballerini’s debut single “Love Me Like You Mean It” topped both the Mediabase and Billboard Country Airplay Charts. Ballerini’s album The First Time made a Top 5 debut on the Billboard Country Albums Chart and the follow up single is coming soon.

Black River Entertainment is home to country music entertainers Craig Morgan, Kellie Pickler, John King, and comedy duo The Raging Idiots.

Welch can be reached at [email protected] or by phone at 615-780-3070.