Swift, Urban On Superstar Concert For Haiti

kuTaylor Swift and Keith Urban are among the A-list celebs set to sing on the all-star television concert special Hope for Haiti Now: A Global Benefit for Earthquake Relief. For the two-hour telethon this Friday, Jan. 22, at 8/7 CT, there will be performances by Wyclef Jean, Bruce Springsteen, Jennifer Hudson, Mary J. Blige, Shakira, and Sting in New York City; Alicia Keys, Christina Aguilera, Dave Matthews, John Legend, Justin Timberlake, Stevie Wonder, and Swift, and a group performance by Urban, Kid Rock, and Sheryl Crow in Los Angeles; and Coldplay, and a group performance by Bono, The Edge, Jay-Z, and Rihanna in a newly added London location. The show will air on all the major networks, many cable channels, and will be streamed online at a number of sites (complete list below).

All musical performances will be available for purchase for $.99 per song through the Apple® iTunes® Store beginning Saturday, Jan. 23, with all proceeds benefiting Haiti relief funds managed by “Hope for Haiti Now” charities.

tsIn addition to musical performances, Wyclef Jean in New York City, George Clooney in Los Angeles, and CNN’s Anderson Cooper reporting from Haiti, Hope for Haiti Now will feature more than one hundred of the biggest names in film, television, and music supporting the cause with testimonials and by answering phones during the telethon.

Hope for Haiti Now is on schedule to be the most widely distributed telethon in history, both internationally and across media platforms. It will air on ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CNN, BET, The CW, HBO, MTV, VH1, CMT, PBS, TNT, Showtime, COMEDY CENTRAL, Bravo, E! Entertainment, National Geographic Channel, Oxygen, G4, CENTRIC, Current TV, Fuse, MLB Network, EPIX, Palladia, SoapNet, Style, Discovery Health, Planet Green, and international networks. The event will be live streamed on YouTube, Hulu, MySpace, Fancast, AOL,, Yahoo,,,,,, and Rhapsody and on mobile via Alltel, AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and FloTV.

Community: Haiti Benefit, Trey Bruce, Dan Harr, Josh Ragsdale

Pam Tillis

The Nashville Area Red Cross and the Music City Community Chorus are presenting a benefit concert tomorrow night, Tuesday, Jan. 19 at Limelight. Pam Tillis, Buddy Jewell, John Cowan, Troy Johnson and others will perform Handel’s Messiah along with a chorus and an orchestra made up of members of the Nashville Symphony. The Nashville Area Red Cross’s portion of the proceeds will go to disaster relief efforts in Haiti. The show also benefits the Music City Community Chorus, a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, directed by vocal coach Renee Grant-Williams.

A benefit for Dan Harr, owner of web site Music News Nashville, has been scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Tues., Feb. 2, at Limelight in Nashville. Harr was diagnosed with cancer in May 2009 and has been undergoing treatment. Artist headliners and auction items are needed. If you have items you can donate, please mail them to: Susan Greene,  256 Seaboard Lane, #G-103, Franklin, TN 37067. Or call her to arrange pick-up at 615-210-5306. A headliner artist and songwriter/artists are needed for the evening. Please contact Harr at 770-316-2922 or 615-948-7425 if you have a performer who can participate.


Sara Qualls, mother of Chrysalis Music VP A&R Nashville Trey Bruce, passed away Sun., Jan. 17. Visitation will be 5-7 PM, Jan. 19 at Memorial Park Funeral Home in Memphis. Funeral services will be held Wed., Jan. 20 at 10 AM.

A bone marrow donor has been found for musician Josh Ragsdale. Read more at his brother’s blog.

2010 Grammy Nominees CD Announced

The Recording Academy’s Grammy Recordingsgrammynomscd has partnered with EMI Music to release the 2010 Grammy Nominees CD, the 16th iteration of the series and featuring nominees from the upcoming 52nd Annual Grammy Awards. Available January 19, a portion of the proceeds from the collection’s sales will benefit the Recording Academy’s MusiCares and Grammy Foundations. Nashville-related artists feature prominently among the disc’s 20 tracks, including Kings of Leon, Taylor Swift, Zac Brown Band, Sugarland, Lady Antebellum, and Rascal Flatts. Complete tracklist included below.

“The diverse mix of tracks contained in this fine collection offer some of the great songs and artists that make up this year’s talented crop of nominees,” says Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy. “We look forward to another successful chart-topping year and to providing further support to the important work that MusiCares and the GRAMMY Foundation continue to do year-round. And, we thank EMI Music for their collaboration on this exceptional album.”

The collection includes several of the most recognized Grammy categories, representing nominees for Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Country Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocals, and Best Rock Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocals.

The 52nd Annual Grammy Awards will be held January 31 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, and the live broadcast starts on CBS at 7pm CT.

2010 Grammy Nominees CD Tracklist [with artist nominations]:
1. The Black Eyed Peas – “I Gotta Feeling”
[Record Of The Year, Album Of The Year, Best Pop Vocal Album]

2. Lady GaGa – “Poker Face”
[Record Of The Year, Album Of The Year]

3. Kings Of Leon – “Use Somebody”
[Record Of The Year, Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

4. Dave Matthews Band – “You & Me”
[Album Of The Year]

5. Taylor Swift – “You Belong With Me”
[Record Of The Year, Album Of The Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance]

6. Colbie Caillat – “Fallin’ For You”
[Best Pop Vocal Album]

7. The Fray – “You Found Me”
[Best Pop Vocal Album]

8. P!nk – “Sober”
[Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance]

9. Kelly Clarkson – “My Life Would Suck Without You”
[Best Pop Vocal Album]

10. Katy Perry – “Hot N Cold”
[Best Female Pop Vocal Performance]

11. Beyoncé – “Halo”
[Record Of The Year, Album Of The Year, Best Female Pop Vocal Performance]

12. Adele – “Hometown Glory”
[Best Female Pop Vocal Performance]

13. Zac Brown Band – “Chicken Fried”
[Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

14. Sugarland – “It Happens”
[Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

15. Lady Antebellum – “I Run To You”
[Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

16. Rascal Flatts – “Here Comes Goodbye”
[Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

17. Green Day – “21 Guns”
[Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

18. Coldplay – “Life In Technicolor ii”
[Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

19. U2 – “I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight”
[Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

20. Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood – “Can’t Find My Way Home”
[Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals]

Benefits: For Mike Kinnamon; Grant-Williams Seeks Artists

Mike Kinnamon

Mike Kinnamon

A reunited Bering Strait (including MusicRow All-star Guitarist Ilya Toshinsky) are leading a benefit for former manager Mike Kinnamon. He recently had extensive knee surgery and is facing months of rehabilitation. On the line-up for the Jan. 7 show at 3rd & Lindsley are Steve Cropper with Jonny Rosch, Supercharger, Wade Hayes, Lyman Ellerman, Buddy Brock, Wil Nance, and Craig White. 6-9 PM, $15


Artists are still needed for a unique charity presentation of Handel’s Messiah being headed up by vocal coach Renee Grant-Williams. Under her direction, the Music City Community Chorus will perform with members of the Nashville Symphony Orchestra as a fundraiser for the Nashville Red Cross. To bring Nashville’s musical communities closer together, the performance is being held at Limelight, and includes a wide variety of national and local artists such as Buddy Jewell, John Cowan, Mandy Barnett and Peter Noone (Herman’s Hermits). The tenor parts are already covered, but a few alto and bass voices are needed, as are several sopranos. Call Renee Grant-Williams at 259-4900 or email her at [email protected]

Covington Donates To Arthritis Foundation

Pictured (L-R): Bucky Covington and Len Smith (CEO/President Arthritis Foundation, Tennessee Chapter) Photo Credit: Brian Waters / Waterworks Photography – 12.29.09

Pictured (L-R): Bucky Covington and Len Smith (CEO/Pres. Arthritis Foundation, Tennessee Chapter) Photo: Brian Waters / Waterworks Photography

Bucky Covington made a big donation to the Arthritis Foundation’s Tennessee Chapter last night (12/29) before his performance at the newly renovated Hard Rock Cafe Nashville. The singer won $25,000 earlier this year with an appearance on CMT’s Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader? and was glad to turn the money over to one of his favorite charities.

Covington performed as part of the venue’s countdown to 2010 celebration, and proceeds from the show will benefit the Arthritis Foundation (Tennessee Chapter). Presented by ASCAP, the concert is a part of Hard Rock’s series of special events and week-long live music series leading up to New Year’s Eve to celebrate the venue’s grand re-opening.

More Artists Added To Sound And Speed

sound and speed logoDanny Gokey and Holly Williams are among the latest additions to Sprint Sound & Speed Presented by SunTrust, a fundraiser pairing NASCAR and country music, set for Jan. 8-9 in Nashville. The annual event benefits the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum, and Victory Junction, a camp for children with serious illness.

A special edition of the Grand Ole Opry at the Ryman Auditorium will open Sound & Speed on Friday, Jan. 8. American Idol Season 8 finalist Gokey will make his Opry debut, joining other newly added singers Holly Williams and Jason Michael Carroll, along with already announced participants Hank Williams Jr., Chris Young and Kyle Petty and his band. There will also be appearances by NASCAR’s Denny Hamlin, Clint Bowyer, Jamie McMurray and Greg Biffle during the Friday night shows. There will be Opry performances at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., with varying artists schedules.

On Saturday, Jan. 9 the event continues at Nashville’s Municipal Auditorium, where fans of racing and country music will have the opportunity to get up-close and personal with drivers, team owners, and artists for autographs, story-telling, and question-and-answer sessions. The fan event will feature show car and sponsor displays, as well as a charitable auction with memorabilia from the racing and entertainment industries. Gokey, Danielle Peck, Corey Smith, Ashton Shepherd, Brady Seals, Nathan Lee Jackson and duo Kate & Kacey join previously announced participants Jason Michael Carroll, Josh Turner, members of Diamond Rio, and Young.

NASCAR stars Aric Almirola, Justin Allgaier, Kyle Petty, Michael Annett, Carl Edwards, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Kyle Busch, James Buescher, Brad Kesolowski, Logan Ruffin, Brian Scott and Morgan Shepherd join already announced participants Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, Kasey Kahne, Michael Waltrip, Clint Bowyer, Reed Sorenson, and David Stremme.

More drivers and country music artists will be announced in the coming weeks.

Since its inception five years ago, Sound & Speed has attracted an estimated 40,000 fans and raised more than $800,000 for Victory Junction (a camping experience founded by Kyle and Pattie Petty for children battling illnesses) and the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum.

For details and ticketing information visit

Jimmy Wayne To Walk Halfway Across US For Homeless

jimmy wayneJimmy Wayne is on a crusade for the homeless. The singer plans to walk from Nashville to Phoenix to raise funds and awareness for at-risk individuals, particularly youth and young adults. He will sleep outdoors and in shelters along the way.

His journey—called the “Meet Me Halfway” campaign because he is walking halfway across the country—will start on New Year’s Day at Nashville youth services organization Monroe Harding.

Wayne says his journey is inspired by his teen years, during which he experienced homelessness, and was spurred on the nation’s recent economic downturn which has given rise to the number of people without a safe place to sleep.

“I realize beginning a mission like this in the dead of winter and walking through the middle of the country is going to be difficult, but I hope and pray I am up to the challenge,” Wayne said. “But that’s what the homeless are dealing with each and every winter they go without a home of their own.” Marmot Sportswear is providing Wayne with essential cold weather clothing.

As a teen growing up in North Carolina, Wayne occasionally found himself homeless. He was shuffled between shelters and foster care until an older couple took him in and changed his life at age 16.

Wayne has selected HomeBase Youth Services in Phoenix, where he will end his trip, as the recipient of donations because of the work they do with homeless young adults (age 18–21).

According to Google Maps, walking the more than 1660 miles from Nashville to Phoenix would take at least 22 days.

Read more about “Meet Me Halfway” at

Alive at The Bluebird Series Returns

Amy Grant

Amy Grant

More than 70 songwriters are set to perform in the 17th annual Alive at The Bluebird concert series this January. Many artists and writers who have long supported the benefit for Alive Hospice are returning in 2010, including Amy Grant, Suzy Bogguss, Doug Crider, Kathy Mattea, Jon Vezner, Kim Carnes, Matraca Berg, Becky Hobbs, Benita Hill, Kent Blazy, Gary Burr, Jim Photoglo, Kasey Jones, and Allen Shamblin.

The series will run Tuesdays through Saturdays in January at the Bluebird Café. Opening night is Jan. 2 at 9:30 p.m. with performances by Tony Arata, Pat Alger, Ralph Murphy and Bat McGrath.

Alive Hospice provides end-of-life care and bereavement support services in 12 Middle Tennessee counties. Funding from this concert series will help the nonprofit agency provide comfort to uninsured and underinsured patients who face life-threatening illnesses and limited life-expectancies.

Admission to most shows will range from about $8-20, depending on the show. Schedule, prices and reservations at or by calling The Bluebird Café at 615-383-1461.

Songwriters and Superstars Offer Help During Holidays

keithSongwriters and superstars alike are helping those in need this holiday season.

On board to raise much needed funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital are Keith Urban, Buddy Jewell and Whitney Duncan. Urban and Jewell have 2010 calendars for sale to benefit the hospital through their Web sites. And Duncan is auctioning off the Versace gown she wore on the red carpet of this year’s CMA Awards in support of Country Cares for St. Jude, the auction runs through 12/19.


Also on the auction block are handwritten lyrics from Emmylou Harris, Kix Brooks, The Fray and too many others to mention, benefitting the Americana Music Association. Cayamo has also donated a cruise for two on their Journey Through Song Caribbean Cruise, where Harris will be joined by John Hiatt, Lyle Lovett, Robert Earl Keen, Steve Earle and many others.


Erin Enderlin, Leslie Satcher, Monty Holmes and Casey Beathard will play a benefit concert for the 2nd Squadron/278th Armored Calvary Regiment of the TN National Guard on Dec. 21 at Douglas Corner at 6pm. The cost is $10.


The Loveless Cafe’s White Christmas With Suzy Bogguss & Friends will benefit Second Harvest Food Bank. Running nightly at 6 PM Dec. 20-23, there will be a concert, buffet dinner, and pictures with Santa Claus. Nonperishable food donations will also be accepted at the event. Visit for more info.


The Muzak Heart & Soul Foundation was scheduled to present a $2,500 Music Matters™ grant to W.O. Smith Music School at its holiday recital on Monday (12/14).


Last weekend Kellie Pickler headlined a Country Crossing-sponsored concert at the Dothan Civic Center in Alabama that benefited the Wiregrass Area United Way Food Bank. Area natives Matt Kennon and Houston County also performed. More than $16,00 and 8,800 pounds of food were raised, translating to 92,134 meals.


Carter’s Chord, Julie Roberts, Bryan White, Blaine Larsen, Rob Blackledge, Tammy Cochran, Regie Hamm, Mica Roberts, Trailer Choir, Natalie Hemby, and more raised funds for Christian child advocacy ministry Compassion International with a concert at the Mercy Lounge on Dec. 2.


Michael Martin Murphey’s Cowboy Christmas in Longview, Texas (12/11), and his Bar-None Cowboy Christmas Ball in Tatum, Texas (12/12) raised $240,000 for Heartlight Ministries for troubled teens.

Martell Foundation To Honor Brooks And Dunn

The TJ Martell Foundation will salute Brooks & Dunn with its first-ever Tony Martell Lifetime Entertainment Achievement Award at a gala event on Monday, March 22. The superstar duo will be feted along with several others at the 2010 T.J. Martell Foundation Honors Gala at the Hutton Hotel.

Michael Bolton will also be honored that night with a new award from the non-profit which fights cancer and AIDS. He will take home the first Frances Williams Preston Lifetime Music Industry Award.

Other honorees include Governor Phil Bredesen receiving the Lifetime Humanitarian Award, the Honorable William H. Frist M.D. receiving the Lifetime Medical Achievement Award, and Susan Simons receiving the Spirit of Nashville Award.

Brooks & Dunn, Governor Phil Bredesen, The Honorable William H. Frist, M.D., Susan Simons, Brooks and Dunn and Michael Bolton were announced as the 2010 T.J. Martell Foundation Honors Gala honorees during the Foundation’s holiday kick off reception on Thursday, December 10, 2009 at BMI. (L-R): Dr. C.Wright Pinson (Honors Gala Co-Chair), Susan Simons (Honors Gala Honoree), Whitney Daane and Barbara Daane (Honors Gala Co-Chairs) Photo by Randi Radcliff  

The T.J. Martell Foundation held its holiday kick-off reception at BMI on Thursday (12/10), where organizers announced the Honors Gala honorees. (L-R): Dr. C. Wright Pinson (Honors Gala Co-Chair), Susan Simons (Honors Gala Honoree), Whitney Daane and Barbara Daane (Honors Gala Co-Chairs). Photo: Randi Radcliff

Table sponsorships for the charity event start at $10,000. Individual tickets begin at $1,000. Congratulatory ads for the honorees may also be purchased for the commemorative journal.

In Nashville, the T.J. Martell Foundation supports cancer research at the Frances Williams Preston Laboratories at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. This facility was established in 1993 in honor of  longtime BMI Pres. and CEO Frances Preston, who also served as President of the T.J. Martell Foundation board.