CMA Music Festival By The Numbers

Luke Bryan performs at LP Field on Sat., June 9 during the 2012 CMA Music Festival. Bryan and Kimberly Perry will host "CMA Music Festival: Country's Night to Rock" airing Mon., Sept. 17 on ABC. Photo: Donn Jones/CMA

$6.1 million festival proceeds donated to music education over the years
1.4 million fans in CMA’s aggregate digital audience
1.25 million consumer engagements including product sampling, sales leads and brand impressions
71,000 total daily attendance
31,000 tweets sent to the Jumbotrons at LP Field
22,500 texts sent to the Jumbotrons at LP Field
25,000 fans at the free concerts at the Riverfront both Friday and Saturday
20,000 cheering spectators at the kick-off parade
17,000 number of times the CMA Awards & Music Fest App was downloaded for the festival
10,000 hours worked by volunteers
882 attendees treated by medical workers
730 credentialed journalists, photographers, and videographers
460 volunteers
450 artists performances
250 artists and celebrities appearing at Fan Fair Hall
230 domestic and international media outlets represented
200 hours of concert
94 percent of attendees who are extremely satisfied and plan to attend next year
71 percent of attendees who are college educated
50 brand sponsors
50 number of states represented by attendees
40 radio stations represented by broadcaster attendees
38.5 average age of attendees
38 acts at the Nightly Concerts at LP Field
24 number of countries represented
14 ambulance transports
4 number of times the CMA Music Festival has won IEBA Festival of the Year

Jack Lameier Passes

Respected radio promotion veteran Jack Lameier died this morning (5/31). He was 69 and had been battling cancer.

His career spanned 40 years at CBS/Sony, ending as Sr. VP of Promotion in 2001. Following that, he went on to launch his own company, Jack’s Place Consulting, and adopted the title Proprietor.

An active member of the industry, he served on the ACM Board of Directors and earned the organization’s Mae Boren Axton Award, which is given in recognition of years of dedication and service by an outstanding individual to the ACM. He also served on the ACM Lifting Lives Board of Directors, which oversees the organization’s charitable initiatives.

Lameier was on the Country Radio Broadcasters Board of Directors and received the CRB President’s Award for significant contributions to the marketing, production, growth and development of Country Radio Seminar and the CRB.

Outside the office, Lameier was an avid golfer and Civil War buff who enjoyed collecting artifacts and participating in reenactments.

He is survived by wife Connie—the couple was nearing their 50th wedding anniversary—son Brandon, daughter Lynne and several grandchildren.

Visitation will take place Sunday, June 3rd in the Parish Hall at Holy Family Catholic Church on Crockett Road in Brentwood, TN. Additional visitation will take place 9 – 11 am, Monday, June 4th at Holy Family Catholic Church. Mass will take place at 11 am, followed by a reception luncheon at the church.

Folk Music Legend Doc Watson Passes

Highly influential guitarist, singer, and songwriter Doc Watson passed away yesterday (5/29) at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC, following colon surgery. He was 89.

Born Arthel Lane Watson in Deep Gap, NC, he was bestowed with the nickname “Doc” during a live broadcast when the announcer said he should have an easy nickname and an audience member shouted out “Call him Doc!” The name stuck with him the rest of his life.

Watson was blind since before he was one year old, and attended North Carolina’s school for the visually impaired in Raleigh. When he was 13, he taught himself how to play “When The Roses Bloom in Dixieland” on a borrowed guitar, and his father bought him a $12 Stella as reward.

In 1947, he married Rosa Lee Carlton, daughter of fiddler Gaither Carlton, and they had two children Eddy Merle and Nancy Ellen. Watson’s first paying gigs were with a local rockabilly/swing band, but he became a full-time professional with the folk/traditional music revival of the 1960s. His self-titled solo debut appeared in 1964, and he was represented until his passing by Folklore Productions.

Watson and his son Merle began touring together in the late 1960s, with Merle playing guitar and banjo in addition to serving as driver. During this time the pair began to reach a worldwide audience, helped by collaborations with Flatt & Scruggs, Chet Atkins and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Merle passed away in 1985 after an accident on the family farm, but his legacy has been carried on with the annual MerleFest music festival in Wilkesboro, NC.

Over the course of his career, Watson recorded more than 50 albums and won eight Grammy Awards, including a Lifetime Achievement Grammy. He was also a recipient of the National Medal of Arts, and a National Heritage Fellowship. In 2011, a life-size statue of Watson was unveiled in Boone, NC on the spot where he used to play for tips. At his request, the statue’s inscription reads “Just One of the People.”

His unique and innovative style of guitar picking influenced scores of guitarists who followed, and his repertoire of American music was vast. President Bill Clinton said, in awarding Watson the National Medal of Arts, “There may not be a serious, committed Baby Boomer alive who didn’t at some point in his or her youth try to spend a few minutes at least trying to learn to pick a guitar like Doc Watson.”

He is survived by his wife Rosa Lee, daughter Nancy Ellen, grandchildren Richard Watson and Karen Watson Norris, several great-grandchildren, and brother David Watson.

Private funeral arrangements are pending.


MusicRow extends condolences to Dale Turner on the death of his mother, and Suzanne Gordon on the passing of her father.

Atrell B. Thornell Turner, mother of radio and promotion vet Dale Turner, passed away May 21, 2012. She was 86 and lived in Lake City, Arkansas. The funeral will be at 2 p.m. on Sat., May 26 at the Emerson Memorial Chapel in nearby Jonesboro, Ark. Burial will follow at Monette Cemetery. Visitation will be Friday evening from 6-8 p.m. at Emerson Funeral Home in Jonesboro.

• • • •

James Richard Cox, father of GAC VP/Programming Suzanne Gordon, passed away May 22, 2012 in Oklahoma at the age of 83. A well-known educator and jazz musician and composer, Cox toured and performed with many musical greats including Ella Fitzgerald, Mel Torme, Buddy Rich, Pete Fountain and Henry Mancini. The famly will receive friends Thurs., May 24 from 5-7 p.m. at Freeman Harris Funeral Home in Tulsa and a memorial service will be held Friday, May 25 at 11 a.m. at Carbondale Assembly of God Church.

Doug Dillard Passes Away

Photo: Alan Mayor

Banjo player Doug Dillard passed away yesterday (5/16) at a Nashville, TN emergency room. He was 75 years old.

Dillard was born in Salem, MO in 1937. Signed to Elektra Records in the early 1960’s, Dillard and his band (The Dillards) appeared multiple times on The Andy Griffith Show as fictional family band the “Darlings.”

After that, Dillard joined the Byrds on the group’s European Tour, eventually partnering with former Byrds member Gene Clark to perform as the duo Dillard & Clark.

He was inducted into the IBMA Hall of Fame in 2009.

Funeral arrangements have yet to be announced.

Industry Ink (5/17/12)

NASH2O, a charity organized by George Gruhn, luthier Joe Glaser, and steel guitarist/producer Bruce Bouton in the wake of the 2010 May floods, recently donated $36,000 to two regional fire service organizations to purchase water rescue equipment. The money was raised by an auction of flood-damaged instruments from top artists, which were sold as collector pieces. The group also received a $10,000 grant by Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company and Frost Specialty.

MusicRow offers sincere condolences to photographer Alan Mayor on the passing of his mother, Rosemary Fulmer Mayor of Clarksville. She was 86 and died Sun., May 13, 2012. She spent over 30 years working in the Montgomery County School system and was preceded in death by her husband, Lt. Col Albert Mayor Jr. USAF. She is survived by daughter Theresa Mayor Smith (Lee) of Cadiz; sons Alan Leslie Mayor of Nashville, and Kenneth Albert Mayor of Clarksville; and two grandchildren.

Visitation will be at 1 p.m. today (5/17) until the funeral service at 3 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church in Clarksville. Burial will be tomorrow (5/18) at 10 a.m. at Kentucky Veterans Cemetery West. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Grace Lutheran Church’s Rosemary Fulmer Mayor College Scholarship Fund, or Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital. Arrangements are in care of Neal-Tarpley-Parchman Funeral Home, 1510 Madison Street, Clarksville, TN 37040; (931) 645-6488. Online condolences may be made at

• The National Music Publishers’ Association‘s annual meeting in New York City will be June 13, 2012, from 4–6 p.m. at the Marriott Marquis’ Astor Ballroom, 1535 Broadway, New York, NY. For registration contact Jamie Marotta at [email protected]

Abacast, a provider of cloud-based streaming and ad management services to the radio industry, and SESAC have entered a partnership whereby SESAC will offer Abacast services to its new Radio Website licensees. SESAC will promote Abacast’s Clarity™ Digital Radio System to prospective radio licensees that launch new streaming ventures. Under this program, terrestrial radio stations that launch new streaming ventures with Abacast and license with SESAC will qualify for special introductory discounts from both organizations.

New West Records has launched an imprint based in Athens, GA named Normaltown Records. The label’s first two Athens based signings Kalen Nash and White Violet, will be joined by labelmate Daniel Romano, a Juno Award winner, for a show in Nashville at the High Watt at Mercy Lounge on June 12. Select songs are available for free download at

• Changes to state law made during the 107th General Assembly will mean $2 million in anticipated funding for the state’s film incentive program, administered by the Tennessee Film Entertainment and Music Commission (TFEMC). In addition, reforms to the state’s film funding grant formula will give smaller, indigenous film productions access to a larger share of available grant dollars. Under the new program, projects with budgets over $200,000 will be eligible to receive grants equal to 25 percent of their qualified Tennessee expenditures. Previously, the combined grant and tax credit system awarded a 17 percent grant and 15 percent refundable tax credit only to productions with budgets over $1 million.

Starlite Nightclub Founder Passes

Mary King

Mary King, the founder of Nashville’s oldest continuously operating nightclub, has died at age 91.

Known as “Sis,” Ms. King was the owner and manager of The Starlite Dinner Club. She built it on a former cow pasture in East Nashville and opened it on Christmas Eve, 1952. The nightclub is still going strong, having entertained generations of Nashvillians with its country-dancing format and hearty dinner menus. The Starlite remains at its original location, 3976 Dickerson Pike.

Mary Frances Garner King was a native Nashvillian. She is survived by her sons Roger Keefer and Lonnie Dale Garner and daughter Patricia Garner Frensley. She was preceded in death by her fourth child, son Timothy Joseph King.

Other survivors include six grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.

Ms. King died of complications from Alzheimer’s on Wednesday, May 9. Her Starlite Dinner Club will celebrate its 60th anniversary on Dec. 24, 2012.

A celebration of Mary King’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday at the chapel of the Spring Hill Funeral Home, and interment will follow in Spring Hill Cemetery. Visitation hours with the family are on Thursday, 4-8:00 p.m. and on Friday, 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Spring Hill Funeral Home and Cemetery are at 5110 Gallatin Pike. Memorial contributions should be made to the Alzheimer’s Association at

Bradley Collier Passes [Updated]

Bradley Collier

MusicRow extends sincere condolences to publicist Susan Collier and her family on the passing of son Bradley Aaron Collier. He was 35 and died May 2, 2012, in a motorcycle accident on Woodlawn Drive in Nashville.

Collier, a former Marine, was the recipient of a Medal of Valor and a Purple Heart. He was severely injured during his 2004 tour of duty in Iraq.

He was interviewed by The Tennessean in November 2011 for an article about veteran medical care.

He is survived by his mother Susan, father Rex, brother Christian, and stepmother Malvina Collier, all of Nashville, plus numerous extended family members in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana.

A family and friends visitation will be held at West Harpeth Funeral Home (6962 Charlotte Pike) on Monday, May 7, 4 – 7 pm; and on Tuesday, May 8, 10 – 11 am with a Celebration of Life service at 11 am. Burial Service will take place May 8 at 1 pm at Middle Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery on McCrory Lane, with a reception to follow at 2:30 pm at Brookmeade Congregational Church.

Attorney Fred Wilhelms Passes

Entertainment attorney Frederick “Fred” Wilhelms III passed away at his Nashville home on April 24, 2012 following a yearlong fight with pancreatic cancer. He was 62.

Born in Elizabeth, NJ, he graduated from Lafayette College and Vermont Law School.

He is survived by wife of 14 years, Teri; brother, Kip Wilhelms (Dolores); sister, Linda; daughters Erica Haas (Rob) and Rebecca Douglas (Matt), and grandchildren Caroline and Charlie.

Read a blog about him here.

Memorial donations may be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network at Services by Nashville Funeral and Cremation Service (615) 256-1605.


Yodeler Kenny Roberts Passes

Famed country yodeler Kenny Roberts has died at age 85. His death was reported on Sunday, April 29. He was known as “Yodeling Kenny Roberts” and as “America’s King of the Yodelers.”

Roberts was a radio star at KMOX in St. Louis, the CBS Saturday morning show Barnyard Frolics, The Hoosier Hop in Ft. Wayne, IN, the WCOP Hayloft Jamboree in Boston and The Midwestern Hayride in Cincinnati. He also starred in his own television kiddie program The Kenny Roberts Show on WNEM-TV in Saginaw, MI in the 1960s, as well as earlier on WLW-TV in Cincinnati.

He was a recording artist for the Vogue, Coral/Decca, Palomino and Longhorn labels in 1945-1985. His biggest hits included “I Never See Maggie Alone” (1949), “Wedding Bells” (1949), “Jealous Heart” (1949) and “Choc’late Ice Cream Cone” (1950), all on Coral. Roberts also popularized such songs as “River of Tears,” “I’ve Got the Blues,” “Yodel Polka,” “She Taught Me to Yodel,” “Hillbilly Style” and “Cheer Up, Things Could be Worse.”

He helped launch the career of Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Bill Haley, who was in his Down Homers country band in 1946.

During his long career, Kenny Roberts appeared on the network television programs Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts and The Today Show.

MusicRow sends condolences to his family. He is the father of music executives Bobby Roberts (The Bobby Roberts Company) and Jeff Roberts (Jeff Roberts & Associates). He is also survived by seven other children, 19 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. Kenny Roberts passed away at his home in Athol, Massachusetts. Funeral arrangements have not been announced.