Lynn Honored with Van Lear Rose

Overton and Lynn

A new rose has been named in honor of country legend Loretta Lynn. The “Loretta Lynn Van Lear,” named after the Grammy-winning album Van Lear Rose, will be delivered to Lynn’s ranch in the spring of 2011 and will be available for purchase by the fall of 2011.

“Roses have always been so special to me—I’ve loved them since I was a girl,” said Loretta. “So to have a rose named after one of my albums … well, I’m not sure I quite have the words for that! I’m just very, very honored. I can’t wait to have those Van Lear roses blooming in my yard!” she added.

The rose is classified as a floribunda, an ever-blooming hybrid with a deep apricot color. The plant will grow to roughly two feet, making it an ideal size for gardens and large containers.

Sony Music Nashville Chairman and CEO Gary Overton presented Lynn with the rose in celebration of her 50-year career and the recent release of Coal Miner’s Daughter: A Tribute to Loretta Lynn. The album, released on November 9th, features artists Alan Jackson, Martina McBride, Gretchen Wilson, Kid Rock and Paramore, among others, covering Lynn’s beloved songs.

The Loretta Lynn Van Lear

2010 was an exciting year for Lynn. She was honored with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in January, recognizing her legacy and considerable career achievements. The Coal Miner’s Daughter album was one of 25 sound recordings chosen for preservation within the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress, noting its cultural, historic and aesthetic significance. In October, the Recording Academy presented Lynn with the President’s Merit Award, honoring her contributions to country music. 2010 also marked the 50th anniversary of Lynn’s chart debut in 1960.

Weekly Chart Report (12/10/10)

Cody McCarver (center) made a stop recently at WYVY and visited with PD Don Willson (R) and weekend air personality D.T. Rogers (L).

The holidays are upon us, which means its almost time to take a break from number crunching and chart compiling. Next week’s chart, to be published on December 17, will be the final one of 2010. We’ll start back strong in 2011 on Friday, January 7.

SPIN ZONE
Slight changes occur in the penultimate CountryBreakout Chart of 2010, as Keith Urban’s “Put You In A Song” ascends to No. 1 over Reba’s multi-week chart-topper “Turn On The Radio.” This is Urban’s third No. 1 song of the year, following “‘Til Summer Comes Around” and “I’m In.” Soon to be vying for that top spot are Luke Bryan’s “Someone Else Calling You Baby” at No. 3, Tim McGraw’s “Felt Good On My Lips” at No. 4 and Carrie Underwood’s “Mama’s Song” at No. 5.

Jerrod Niemann’s “What Do You Want” jumps into the Top 20 for the first time at No. 18, followed by Stoney Creek’s Thompson Square with “Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not” at No. 19. James Otto’s “Soldier’s & Jesus” also cracks the Top 20 threshold, moving up a spot from No. 21. Quickly on their way toward the top are Darius Rucker’s “This” at No. 21, Brad Paisley’s “This Is Country Music” at No. 24, Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson’s “Don’t You Wanna Stay” at No. 30 and Sugarland’s “Little Miss” at No. 34.

New arrivals to the chart this week include Steel Magnolia’s “Last Night Again,” nabbing the week’s highest debut at No. 76, and Josh Abbott Band’s “Oh, Tonight” at No. 80.

Upcoming Singles
December 13
Alabama/Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way?/Valory
Brad Paisley/This Is Country Music/Arista

Holiday Airplay
Jason Michael Carroll/Christmas On The Farm/Stray Records/Quarterback
Danny Gokey/Tennessee Christmas/19/RCA
Deborah Allen Feat. Cledus T. Judd/Redneck Christmas/GMV/Aristomedia
Kenny Rogers/The Chosen One/Joy To The World (Live)/DCE
Rachel Holder/Christmas Eve
Burns & Poe/Hear The Angels Singing/Blue Steel
Rodney Carrington/Camouflage and Christmas Lights/EMI Records Nashville
Darius Rucker/Candy Cane Christmas/Capitol Nashville
Mishavonna with Crystal Gayle/Christmas Everywhere/Redrum/GrassRoots
Sandy Kastel/Santa Baby/Silk and Satin Records
Williams Riley/Celebrate Me Home/Wide Open Music Group

•  •  •  •

New On The Chart—Debuting This Week
Artist/song/label — chart pos.
Steel Magnolia/Last Night Again/Big Machine — 77
Josh Abbott Band/Oh, Tonight/PDT — 80

Greatest Spin Increase
Artist/song/label — spin+
Brad Paisley/This Is Country Music/Arista — 500
Taylor Swift/Back To December/Big Machine — 297
Sugarland/Little Miss/Mercury — 264
Jason Aldean w/Kelly Clarkson/Don’t You Wanna Stay/Broken Bow — 263
Darius Rucker/This/Capitol — 232

On Deck—Soon To Be Charting
Artist/song/label — spins
Jadi Norris/Home Is Where The Heart Is — 221
Taylor Made/Quiet Kind of Crazy — 209
D.J. Miller/A Snowman In Birmingham/Evergreen — 200
David St. Romain/Live, Laugh, Love and Drink — 200
Mickey Utley/Cry Like Memphis/Mick-Armour Records — 191

Two Week Most Added*
Artist/song/label — New adds
Brad Paisley/This Is Country Music/Arista — 16
Trace Adkins/Brown Chicken, Brown Cow — 15
Sugarland/Little Miss/Mercury — 8
Darius Rucker/This/Capitol — 7
Craig Campbell/Family Man/Bigger Picture — 7

Brett Eldredge recently visited KRST. (L-R): Eldredge, Kristina Carlyle and Eddie Haskell.

Columbia Nashville's Josh Thompson played in his hometown of Milwaukee, WI last Thursday (12/2) at the Riverside Theater with Jamey Johnson. Thompson's new single, "Won't Be Lonely Long," is at radio now. (L-R): Songwriter Phil O'Donnell, Thompson, Sony Music Nashville EVP A&R Renee Bell, Columbia Nashville's Bo Martinovich, Songwriter Shane Minor, Dir. Programming for Clear Channel Milwaukee/WMIL PD Kerry Wolfe.

Twitter, Music and You

Pew Research Center released a report today, stating that eight percent of American adults who use the Internet are also Twitter users. Twitter, which launched in 2006, serves as both a never-ending tournament in which users attempt to outwit each other in 140 characters or less and a thriving, active community ripe for sharing news and media.

Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project conducted surveys throughout 2008—2010, studying the use of the Twitter and other services to share or see updates about others on the Internet. As 74 percent of American adults are Internet users, six percent of the entire adult population in the U.S. is on Twitter.

Not surprisingly, young adults—Internet users aged 18-29—are “significantly” more likely to use Twitter than older adults, and urbanites are twice as likely to use Twitter than their rural counterparts. Minority Internet users are also more than twice as likely to tweet.

The level of commitment to one’s Twitter account and the content varies widely; as roughly one quarter of Twitter users check the site multiple times a day, yet one in five users “never” check for new material. Seventy-two percent post updates that relate to their personal life, activities and interests and 62 percent post updates relating to their work life, activities and interests. While a portion of users may indulge in navel-gazing, 55 percent also share links to news stories, and 53% retweet material posted by others.

The results from this report were culled from telephone interviews conducted by the Princeton Survey Research Associates International, among a sample of approximately 2,250 adults, aged 18 and older.

While the report tracked activity pertaining to sharing photos, videos, or user location, it did not track music sharing.  Last month, Twitter formed a partnership with iTunes’ Ping service, allowing users to preview songs and link directly to purchase music. Earlier this week, Twitter announced several new content partnerships, including Rdio, a paid subscription music streaming service which allows full-length streaming songs. Launched in an effort to drive traffic to Twitter.com, these partnerships, which also include video and photo sites, followed a September redesign of the website.

While these partnerships are too new to discern the impact upon music discovery and purchasing through Twitter or Twitter.com, we expect to see more activity in this area. Stay tuned, and stay tweeting.

Sales Engine Whirring As Holiday Looms

Fa-la-la-la-la_____        la–la-la-la.
That familiar melodic snippet nicely sums the panoramic view from your Scribe’s lofty perch, high upon the holiday hilltops watching the SoundScan ticker tape turn. A dozen CDs passed the 20k benchmark on the Top Current Country chart this week, and country’s album sales YTD deficit continued to improve from -6.1% to -5.7%.

There’s been a lot of talk about the balance between digital and physical for country consumers. According to Nielsen SoundScan, 15.74% of 2010 country album sales have been digital. Up about 5% or so from last year, but clearly physical sales continue to own a large share of the sales pie. Loss of shelf space at retail outlets, is certainly an issue to watch going forward.

Tim McGraw’s Number One Hits, caps the hefty onslaught of mainstream country debuts this holiday season. McGraw lands at No. 6 on the Current Country list with sales of over 40k. Ms. Swift tops the chart, by a huge margin shifting over 182,000 units followed in the next two positions by Keith Urban (No. 2; 59k+) and Rascal Flatts (No. 3; 57k+) both enjoying third week sales of their new packages. Jason Aldean’s new project, in its fifth week, is No. 4; moving 47k+ with an RTD (release-to-date) total of 438k. Sugarland’s Incredible Machine now completing its 7th week (No. 5; 47k) has RTD of over 570k.

Also deserving mention is The Band Perry logging in at No. 12 this week and ringing the registers with over 22k album units. TBP is also No. 1 on the country tracks chart. The sibling trio’s “If I Die Young” enjoyed over 47k downloads this week and the song has an impressive RTD total of almost 1.05 million!! Other top track tossers in chart order include Sugarland, Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, ZBB, Jason Aldean, Blake Shelton and Aldean (again).

Four weeks remain, three of which should post “up” numbers as we approach Dec. 25. Currently (through week ended 12-5-10) country has tallied about 37 million album units leaving about nine million more to go to reach last year’s year-end 46 million total.

Give the gift of music!

Artists and Songwriters Perform Good Works

Ty Herndon has partnered with former NFL player Kevin Turner to raise awareness about Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and its emerging connection to athletes exposed to repeated head trauma. Turner is a former NFL fullback with the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles who was diagnosed with ALS in 2010. After meeting Herndon at an ALS benefit concert, the two discussed using Herndon’s single “Journey On” as the signature song for The Kevin Turner Foundation. Directors Flick Wiltshire and Steven Goldmann shot the song’s video, which can be seen here.

•  •  •  •

As part of Jack Daniel’s “Toast To The Troops” program, 10,000 USO care packages will be assembled by military spouses and volunteers Friday, December 10 at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida. Once all the packages are completed, BNA artist and Army Veteran Craig Morgan will hold a base-wide free concert for all involved. “It has been an honor and privilege for me to perform for our military service members and their families, and the Toast to the Troops program is one way of letting them know how much we love, respect and appreciate everything they do for us,” said Morgan.  “Their sacrifices, both abroad and on the home front, cannot be measured, and we all owe them a tremendous debt of gratitude.” Morgan’s single “Still A Little Chicken Left On That Bone” is currently climbing the charts.
•  •  •  •

Hit songwriters Kendell Marvell, Danny Myrick, and Bridgette Tatum will be part of a guitar pull at the Statesville, NC home of NASCAR star Ryan Newman Friday, December 10. The annual charity dinner event benefits the Ryan Newman Foundation, which encourages and educates people on responsible pet ownership as well as conservation. The following day (12/11), celebrities and pro fishermen will participate in a celebrity fishing contest.

•  •  •  •

Santa Claus will be making a stop at John Rich’s home in honor of the student-run Vanderbilt University Dance Marathon organization, which raises funds for Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital. On Saturday (12/11), Joan and John Rich will host the annual Dance Marathon Party for “Miracle Families” whose lives have been touched by Children’s Hospital. The Dance Marathon is the largest student-run philanthropic organization at Vanderbilt, and Rich and his wife have pledge to match the top student fundraiser’s total up to $10,000.

Sara Evans Album News; Cash Auction Raises Big Bucks

Sara Evans is Stronger

Sara Evans will release her sixth full-length album, Stronger, on March 8, 2011 on RCA.

The album includes her current single, “A Little Bit Stronger,” written by Luke Laird, Hillary Lindsey and Hillary Scott.

Evans is also featured in the December 13th issue of Country Weekly, in which she talks about the making of her upcoming album.
Cash Brings in the Cash

An auction held earlier this week featuring Johnny Cash memorabilia brought in the big bucks.

An embroidered blue jumpsuit, worn by Cash at a rehearsal for the 1969 San Quentin concert, brought in $50,000 from an unnamed Belgian collector. The suit, featured in the famous photograph of Cash giving the one-finger salute to the camera, was expected to sell for $5,000.

The auction, open to an international group of fans, collectors and investors raked in more than $700,000. Other high-ticket items included a Martin guitar, which brought in $50,000; a Nudie shirt worn by Cash when he served as grand marshal of the American Bicentennial Grand Parade in 1976 sold for $31,250; and a 1968 passport earned $21,875.

LeAnn and “Crazy Women”

LeAnn Rimes will release her new single, “Crazy Women,” digitally on December 21st. “Crazy Women” will be a special bonus track on Rimes’ upcoming album, Lady and Gentlemen, slated for release early next year on Curb Records. For her latest album, Rimes reinterprets classic country songs by Waylon Jennings, George Jones and Merle Haggard, among others.

“This album was born out of when I first fell in love with country music and I realized that almost all of my favorite songs were sung by men,” says Rimes. “I am honored to take a step back in time and sing these songs from a woman’s perspective and hopefully help reintroduce them to a new audience.”

This summer, Rimes released her remake of John Anderson’s “Swingin’,” one of her favorite songs as a child, giving fans a preview of what’s to come. Lady and Gentlemen will also feature a remake of Rimes’ signature song, “Blue,” 15 years after its original release. “I have been performing the song for years, it’s become a classic that people love just as much as I do, so it felt natural to remake the song for this album that covers country classics,” Rimes explains.

The album was executive produced by Vince Gill, Darrell Brown (Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts) and Rimes. Information on Rimes, including upcoming tour dates, is available here.

Cookin’ With Zac Brown

You know Zac Brown as the lead singer/guitar player of the Zac Brown Band, but do you know Chef Zac Brown? The former chef and restaurant owner has a passion for good food, so much that he built a “kitchen on wheels” and published a cookbook, Southern Ground.

The infamous mobile kitchen is a 53-foot tractor trailer that provides meals for the ZBB crew and for the band’s “Eat and Greet” events, in which the crew feeds 200 fans before each concert. This is not your standard food trailer fare; fans are treated to a gourmet Southern spread while enjoying the chance to mingle with the band.

Southern Ground includes recipes from the road and some of Zac’s favorite dishes, including Jalapeno Squash Casserole, Southern Fried Chicken, Farmer’s Fried Green Tomatoes and Revival Peach Cobbler. The cookbook features removable index cards—handy for a quick run to the grocery store for supplies—and dozens of poems, songs, stories (reportedly “both fact and lore”), and photos and other images of art, nature, travel and life.

Slashfood.com is offering fans the chance to win in an autographed copy of the Southern Ground cookbook; entries are due by 5:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday, December 14, 2010. You may also purchase the book here.

Taylor Swift Named New Face of CoverGirl

Taylor Swift is the newest face of CoverGirl cosmetics. She will represent a new line of luxury makeup called CoverGirl NatureLuxe, which will launch in January 2011. The NatureLuxe line encapsulates a new definition of luxury, defined as simple, high-quality experiences rather than overstated, heavy opulence.

“Taylor’s naturally polished and beautiful look fits perfectly with the new luxury makeup line,” said Vince Hudson, General Manager, CoverGirl Cosmetics. “We specifically designed this line for women who, just like Taylor, want high quality products that flatter her lifestyle and environment. NatureLuxe provides luxury that isn’t extravagant, but rather simple, modern elegance that is inspired by nature.”

Swift enthuses, “I’m really excited for people to discover the new NatureLuxe line from CoverGirl! The Silk Foundation and Gloss Balm are really light and fresh, they feel amazing on my skin.”

In other Taylor news, she is among the featured artists in CBS Interactive Music Group’s concert webcast series, Live On Letterman. The series, presented by AT&T, has previously featured on-demand webcasts from artists such as Tim McGraw, John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Katy Perry, Brad Paisley, My Morning Jacket, and Bon Jovi. Swift’s show was taped at the famed Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City, home of the Late Show With David Letterman.

Swift’s concert launched online on December 8th and will be available on-demand through select CBS radio and television stations throughout the country, and through online outlets such as Last.fm, mp3.com, and VEVO.com. Live On Letterman is the first series to be streamed live on the VEVO app, available through mobile devices.

The concert is available for streaming here.

Nashville Prepares For Garth Brooks Concerts

Massive crowds are expected to arrive in Nashville starting one week from today (Dec. 16) when Garth Brooks’ sold out series of Bridgestone Arena shows kicks off. Nashville Downtown Partnership is helping with logistical efforts, as parking is expected to be scarce. Full dates for the shows, which include guests Trisha Yearwood and Karyn Rochelle, are included below.

“This is a unique opportunity” said Tom Turner, President & CEO, Nashville Downtown Partnership. “We have 150,000 ticket buyers and it’s not often we have that many exposures in such a very short time. The community rallied in support during the May floods and that effort is being matched once again in order to help this go smoothly. Where else can you find an artist doing 9 shows in one location for 150,000 fans and all to assist in the recovery efforts….not to mention they will have a great time.”

Free parking will be available at LP Field for December 16, 17, 20, 21, and 22 shows. Round-trip shuttle service to these lots will be available for $3 per person. Advance parking at the Pinnacle Garage is available for $10 plus Ticketmaster fees here. Up to date parking information is available at www.parkitdowntown.com.

In other Garth Brooks news, the artist will appear on Larry King Live at 8 pm CT tomorrow (December 10) as part of the long-time CNN host’s final week of shows. The hour segment covers topics from the Tennessee flood concerts to Brooks’ Vegas residency to iTunes to family. King’s other final week guests include Angelina Jolie and Jon Bon Jovi.

Concert Dates:
Thursday, December 16 — 7 PM
Thursday, December 16 — 10 PM
Friday, December 17 — 7 PM
Sunday, December 19 — 7:30 PM
Monday, December 20 — 7:30 PM
Tuesday, December 21 — 6 PM
Tuesday, December 21 — 9 PM
Wednesday, December 22 — 6 PM
Wednesday, December 22 — 9 PM