Florida Georgia Line, Amazon Music Host ‘Life Rolls On From The FGL House’

Pictured (L-R): Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard. Photo: John Shearer, Getty Images for Amazon Music and CMT

Florida Georgia Line celebrated the release of their new album with the livestream event, Life Rolls On From The FGL House, on Thursday night (Feb. 25). A collaboration with Amazon Music, the virtual performance is available to watch on the Amazon Music Twitch channel for three days.

The evening started with a Q&A with CMT host Cody Alan, then the duo opened the show with their 17th No. 1, “I Love My Country.” Throughout the concert, they performed songs from their almost decade-long career including record-breaking hits like “Cruise” and “Meant to Be” with special guest RaeLynn, as well as new songs from their fifth studio album, Life Rolls On, including current Top 10-and-rising single “Long Live.” They also debuted the songs “Always Gonna Love You,” “Ain’t Worried Bout It” and “Life Looks Good.”

With FGL House located near the site of the Nashville Christmas Day bombing, Amazon Music, FGL, CMT, and Big Machine Label Group each contributed to The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee’s Nashville Neighbors Fund to support local merchants. Donations were digitally collected during the livestream on Tiltify and are still being accepted here.

Pictured: Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard bring out special guest Raelynn to perform “Meant To Be.” Photo: John Shearer, Getty Images for Amazon Music and CMT

Elle King, Miranda Lambert Fight For Their Right To Party On Spunky New Collaboration

Elle King and Miranda Lambert have teamed up on a rollicking new collaboration, “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home).”

The song marks the second time the two female powerhouse performers have joined forces to record together. Their first release, “Fooled Around and Fell in Love,” also featured Maren Morris, Ashley McBryde, Tenille Townes and Caylee Hammack, and won the 2020 ACM Award for Music Event of The Year. In 2019, King joined Lambert as special guest on her Roadside Bars & Pink Guitars tour.

The pair met up in Nashville in January to film an ’80’s-inspired wedding video to accompany “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home),” starring King as the bride and Lambert as maid of honor, complete with a cameo from King’s real-life fiancé as the groom.

“The true story of this song sums up our wild friendship,” says King. “Miranda is someone I have looked up to as a songwriter, musician, performer, and human being for a long time. So our tumbleweed snowball story of getting to know each other is the ultimate real deal kinda thing. Nobody revs me up, kicks my ass on stage, or treats me more like family than Miranda Lambert. Our rowdy reputations proceed us, so who else could sing this song together besides us? Crawling out of such a crazy year, still full of so many unknowns, I ultimately couldn’t think of another person I’d rather come out singin’ and swingin’ with than the most badass chick I know. Miranda.”

Lambert adds: “I think this fun song was born from our becoming friends over the last couple of years. We are new friends but it really feels like we are old friends and I felt like that immediately when I met her at one of her shows. Since then, we’ve toured together and sang on stage together, hung out and partied together, recorded together, and so much more. This song just feels like the natural transition to the after party.”

Live Nation Releases Year-End Report, Expects Concert Comeback

Live Nation Entertainment has released financial results for the quarter ended December 31, 2020, as well as the full year of 2020. Despite a hefty drop in revenue compared to 2019, President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Rapino expressed optimism in a letter accompanying the report, noting that 83 percent of fans continue to hold onto their tickets for rescheduled dates. The company brought in concert revenue of about $1.4 billion in 2020, a major hit compared to $9.4 billion in 2019.

Additionally, in 2020, Live Nation showed a $950 million cost reduction, and a $1.65 billion cash savings.

Rapino’s letter addressed the company’s key initiatives including reducing cost structure by $200 million, expanding revenue opportunities by investing in concert streaming and direct to consumer businesses, such as the recent acquisition of the streaming platform Veeps, and advancing technology initiatives including digital tickets. He noted vaccine distribution gives him confidence that there is a safe return to live events in the future, with outdoor activities likely to happen first.

In part the letter says:

“The supply-demand fundamentals of the concerts business remain strong, with artists ready to get back on the road and fans eager to reconnect at events. All our data continues to show that there is substantial pent-up demand for concerts on the consumer demand side. The $2.4 trillion projected surplus in savings in the U.S. alone by June is a key indicator of consumer spending potential. At the same time, surveys demonstrate the high demand for concerts globally, with 95% of fans likely to attend a show when restrictions are lifted. This is proving out in fan behavior as well, with 83% of fans continuing to hold onto their tickets for rescheduled shows.

Given the limited touring activity in 2020 and 2021, the pipeline for 2022 is much stronger than usual, with almost twice as many major touring artists on cycle in 2022 than a typical year – about 45 artists versus the usual 25. And there remains plenty of scheduling availability…

So while the timing of our return to live will continue to vary across global markets, every sign points to it beginning safely in many countries sometime this summer and scaling further from there.”

The Mavericks Host Web Series, Send Love And Food To Fans In Texas

The Mavericks are sending some love and relief to those in Texas affected by the recent hard times and weather disaster with the help of Casa Garcia’s Restaurants.

Fans in need can visit any of Casa Garcia’s six Austin-area locations and mention The Mavericks to receive a hot meal at no cost. Anyone wishing to support the cause may donate at bit.ly/MavsTexasRelief (please include note “Texas”), with all funds used to feed as many people as possible.

“Texas is near and dear to our hearts. It’s been a second home of this band for many years, and we’re proud to partner with our friends at Casa Garcia’s to give back to the place that has given us so much,” said The Mavericks. “We miss everyone there, and look forward to the day we see your faces again. Until then, we want to make sure no one goes without a meal in this time of need.”

The Mavericks are also set for the fourth episode of their web concert series this Saturday, Feb. 27. The show will feature music from the band’s En Español and Play The Hits albums, along with never-seen-before interviews.


‘Willie Nelson’s Letters To America’ Coming This Summer

Willie Nelson will release a new book this summer sharing his perspective on America, family, faith, music, and more. Willie Nelson’s Letters to America was written in collaboration with longtime friend and Texas Monthly contributing editor Turk Pipkin. Harper Horizon will release the book on June 29, 2021.

From the opening letter “Dear America” to his “Dear Road” epilogue, Nelson discusses America’s past, present, and future, his closest family members, and personal heroes with humor and poetic phrasing. He also offers reflections on many of the lyrics from his classic songs.

Six decades into his career, Nelson continues to thrive. In 2020, he released the album First Rose of Spring, as well as a memoir with his sister and pianist Bobbie Nelson titled, Me and Sister Bobbie: True Tales of The Family Band. In February 2021 he released That’s Life, his second album of standards and classics made famous by Frank Sinatra.

Pipkin is a writer, director and actor who has appeared in numerous feature films and played a recurring character on The Sopranos. He is the author of eight previous books.

Chart Action: Combs Debuts, Rucker Reaches No. 1

Luke Combs‘ “Forever After All” debuts at No. 49 this week on MusicRow‘s CountryBreakout Radio Chart. It received 17 new station adds and had the highest increase in spins with a + 241. The single was written by Combs, Robert Williford, and Drew Parker.

Lauren Alaina‘s new duet with Jon Pardi, “Getting Over Him,” also debuted this week at No. 70.

Receiving the highest spin gain on the Mediabase chart, “Beers and Sunshine” by Darius Rucker reached No. 1 on both Mediabase and Billboard. 

“It’s certainly been a challenging year,” said Rucker. “Like a lot of people, when I got home from being on the road last March and we parked the tour bus for the foreseeable future, we had no idea what our future would actually look like. I don’t have the answers for how we fix the complex issues that we’re facing in our country or in country music, however while we work through this time I think it’s important that we balance the heaviness by finding the silver lining, where we can really enjoy the simple joys this song talks about like time spent together with friends and family.”

Brett Young Celebrates Multiple RIAA Certifications

Brett Young is adding some heavy metal to his collection with his latest Top 10-and-climbing single “Lady” now certified Gold in the U.S. and Canada.

Young’s hit “Catch” has also been certified Platinum, and the accolades add to Young’s growing collection of shiny chart-toppers—“Sleep Without You” (Platinum), “In Case You Didn’t Know” (5x Platinum), “Like I Loved You” (Platinum), “Mercy” (3x Platinum) and “Here Tonight” (Platinum).

Young is also previewing some new music today (Feb. 26) with the release of  “You Got Away With It” via BMLG. The buoyant new track about unexpected love was co-written with Justin Ebach, Ashley Gorley, Jon Nite and Jimmy Robbins.

While touring is paused, Young has remained busy with several all-genre livestreams in an effort to bring music and relief to fans across the world, including the Spirit Airlines & Mastercard Present Brett Young’s Live from the Runway, Live at The Ryman, Levi’s 5:01 Music Series, Visible’s Red Rocks Unpaused, Pepsi’s Unmute Your Voice Concert and Camping World’s Taking The Highways Across America series.

Old Dominion, Ashley McBryde, Lee Brice, Scotty McCreery To Play Benefit For Nashville’s 2nd Ave

Old Dominion, Ashley McBryde, Lee Brice, and Scotty McCreery will help support the efforts to rebuild and restore Nashville’s Second Ave. neighborhood. The 2nd Ave Strong benefit, a star-studded, two-hour musical event will broadcast on NewsChannel from the Wildhorse Saloon 5 on March 26.

Hosted by the DISTRICT, Inc. and the Metro Historical Commission Foundation, the event will raise money for the Second Avenue Restoration and Preservation fund to support the efforts to restore the Second Avenue neighborhood impacted by last year’s Christmas Day bombing, and the preservation of many of the city’s most treasured architectural landmarks and historical contributions.

In addition to the musical performances, the benefit will also take a look back on the important role Second Avenue has played in the history of Nashville. It will also include appearances by Nashville Mayor John Cooper and Governor Bill Lee, plus a tribute to heroic first responder law enforcement officers. The goal is to raise a milestone $2 million dollars towards the $10 million overall goal in supporting immediate and long-term restoration and preservation of the vitally important 2nd Avenue district.

“Giving back to the community speaks to the very heart of what we do every day through hospitality to our guests. The fact that we can join with the music industry to help rebuild this incredible neighborhood of an eclectic blend of artists, business owners, and community leaders is humbling,” said show producer Brian Schafer, general manager of the Wildhorse Saloon.

CRS 2021 On-Demand Content Available With New #FOMO Rate

Country Radio Seminar is offering a discounted #FOMO rate which provides access to on-demand content from CRS 2021: The Virtual Experience.

For $99, new registrants can access all CRS 2021 sessions on-demand, plus additional exclusive-only content. The on-demand content includes panels and interviews, three workshops, six exclusive sessions, Country Radio Hall of Fame Inductions, CRS/Country Aircheck award winners, digital artist liners, session takeaways, and more, and registrations are available for purchase here. On-Demand content will only be offered for the next two months. Access into on-demand content is already available to anyone previously registered for this year’s event at crsvirtual2021.com/.

“CRS 2021: The Virtual Experience was a tremendous live event, and we appreciate everyone who joined us last week,” said CRB/CRS Executive Director RJ Curtis. “The great content from CRS lives on for 60 days at our On-Demand site, and now everyone who regrets missing out can gain the same access for just $99, with the CRS #FOMO rate. Every session, all the workshops, Hall of Fame inductions, CRS/Country Aircheck Awards, CRS Honors, featuring Mickey Guyton’s stirring national anthem—it’s all there. We hope our industry friends will take advantage of this opportunity to Learn. Connect. Advance.”

Country Radio Seminar will return in 2022 and is set for Feb. 23 – Feb. 25, 2022, at the Omni Nashville Hotel. Registration for next year’s event will open later this year.

Joe Galante Establishes Endowment For Leadership Music

Revered music executive and philanthropist Joe Galante has established an endowment for Leadership Music with a $500,000 initial gift. The Joe Galante Leadership Music Preservation Fund has the potential to grow to $1 million, due to his generous offer to match dollar-for-dollar additional contributions totaling up to $250,000. Joining him in fundraising efforts are campaign co-chairs Christian/pop music star and humanitarian Amy Grant, and Universal Music Nashville CEO Mike Dungan, both alumni of Leadership Music.

This endowment is the first of its kind in the non-profit’s 32-year history and will ensure financial stability for the organization for years to come.

Galante, a founder of the organization, says the idea came about at a pre-Covid Leadership Music retreat. “The board was asked how we could ensure, going forward, that future leaders would always be guaranteed best practices for education, connection and leadership. In that moment the answer emerged–build an endowment. More recently with the pandemic leveling our business, I realized the urgency of the endowment and the need to act now, not only for the future of the organization but the future of our music business and its yet-to-emerge leaders.”

Galante knows the importance of mentorship, citing Frances Preston, Irving Waugh, and Jerry Bradley, as leaders who impacted his career. “The time they spent teaching and connecting me to others allowed me to grow and learn. That was a gift of enormous value.

“When the Founding Council of Leadership Music came together, led by Jim Ed Norman, it continued that process–silos were connected, and the organization helped Nashville…and the music industry…develop a deep bench,” Galante continues. “Over the years, I have seen members of my staff, colleagues and friends, and people I didn’t even know, become leaders in our field as a direct result of their Leadership Music experience, reinforcing my belief in this organization and its goals.”

Grant emphasized that in addition to her love of Leadership Music, she wanted to be involved because she has always been impressed with Galante’s generosity. She says, “Vince and I treasure our friendship with Joe, and my Leadership Music journey was unparalleled, so I instantly wanted to be involved in honoring both the man and the organization. Joe has such a huge heart and has given so generously to cancer research, animal welfare, music education and entrepreneurship, among many others. I am so pleased to join forces with Mike and Joe on this special endeavor.”

Dungan adds, “As any of the more than 1200 graduates will attest, Leadership Music is a one-of-a-kind industry accelerator. An eye-opening, life-changing, career-bending experience constructed to build lifelong friendships and working relationships. Leave it to the one-of-a-kind Joe Galante to see to it that this organization has the financial stability to keep going long into the future. Now it is up to all of us to accept Joe’s challenge and match these funds. I’m honored to have been chosen to co-chair this effort.”

Fundraising Campaign Co-chairs Mike Dungan and Amy Grant

Joe Galante took over as head of RCA Nashville in 1981. In 1990, he was named president of RCA Records in New York, and then returned to Nashville four years later as chairman of the RCA Label Group/Nashville, which eventually became Sony Music Nashville. Under his leadership the company thrived, adding imprints and bolstering the careers of Alabama, Kenny Chesney, The Judds, Martina McBride, Carrie Underwood, Brooks & Dunn, Alan Jackson, Miranda Lambert and Brad Paisley, to name a few. In April 2010, Galante announced his decision to step down from his post as chairman of Sony Music Nashville.

Leadership Music was founded in 1989 by 12 music industry executives who had graduated from Leadership Nashville. They included, in addition to Galante, Rick Blackburn, Tony Brown, Tom Collins, William Denny, Dale Franklin, Bruce Hinton, Bill Ivey, Joe Moscheo, Jim Ed Norman, Tandy Rice, and Roger Sovine.