» Direct To Toby: "I got old memories of that place," Toby Keith says regarding the University of Oklahoma's Stadium. "I was raised inside of 10 miles of that stadium, I sold Cokes in that stadium when I was 13." The Norman, OK venue plays host to Toby's Oklahoma Twister Relief Concert July 6, and he says his former workplace reached out with open arms to make itself available for the star-studded event. "I made a few phone calls, got Garth Brooks, Ronnie Dunn, Trisha Yearwood, Sammy Hagar, Willie Nelson, Mel Tillis, John Anderson, and we just added Carrie Underwood." Carrie plays the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville the same night and plans to join the Oklahoma proceedings via satellite. "She wanted to participate, and we’ve got some other guests that are gonna work between the sets that are going to surprise people." Through a partnership with Verizon Wireless, donations can be made before, during and after the show by texting REBUILD to 52000; $10 will go to the United Way of Central Oklahoma's May Tornadoes Relief Fund. Or, Toby says, "You can find me on the street and give me ten bucks!"
» Life Lifter: ACM Lifting Lives Music Camp was held in Nashville last week, giving some special campers the opportunity to help pave the path of a great country song. The campers wrote "Livin' On Island Time" with Jerrod Niemann and songwriter Lance Miller. That session was followed by studio time with Jake Owen and producer Ross Copperman, who helped them record the track. At the end of the week, the campers took the Opry stage with Jerrod, who sang the tune and joined in giving the campers a standing ovation. The trip also included a visit to the Wildhorse Saloon with Lauren Alaina and a karaoke night with Love And Theft. Lifting Lives uses camp time to study Williams syndrome while providing a creative environment for campers to make and learn about music. Watch highlights from the week here.
» Dinner With Dierks: A Fried Pickle Burger and a Dierks Lemonade will set you back about 22 bucks, unless you dine and ditch, at Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row restaurant. Following in the footsteps of Eddie Montgomery's Steakhouse and Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill, Dierks' new eatery opens July 4 in Scottsdale, AZ with a performance by Jon Pardi and appetizers that include Grilled Whiskey Wings. View upcoming events and menu items here.
» Cat Food: "Just realized you guys got my twitter up to 30 million followers," Taylor Swift tweeted Saturday (6/29). "So cool considering I only tweet about my cat and food." The cat Taylor tweets most about is her laid back travel companion, a Scottish Fold named Meredith. "She really doesn't care where she is," says Taylor. "She’s like, 'Oh, I guess I'm on a plane now. Oh I guess I'm in a dressing room now. Oh I guess I'm in a hotel room now; don't care.'" Taylor and Meredith are on the road through Sept. 21 as they continue the North American leg of her Red Tour.
» Duck Duck Cruise: The Duck Commander Cruise hosted by The Robertson Family will take place July 17-21, 2014. The first artist booked to perform is Scotty McCreery. "Gonna be tons of fun," tweets Scotty. "Come out and sail with us!" More here.
» Black & White & Web All Over:
» In Case You Missed It: The Mavericks appeared on CBS This Morning's Saturday Edition (6/29) to perform "Back In Your Arms Again" and "Come Unto Me." Watch here.
Sarah Buxton (7/3)
Aaron Tippin (7/3)
Trent Tomlinson (7/3)
The late Charlie Louvin (7/7)
Toby Keith (7/8)
Fred Young of the Kentucky HeadHunters (7/8)
Tuesday (7/2): Lennon & Maisy Stella, The View (ABC); Luke Bryan, The Late Show With David Letterman (CBS)
Wednesday (7/3): Gretchen Wilson, The Talk (ABC).
Thursday (7/4): Little Big Town, The View (ABC); Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Macy's Fourth Of July Fireworks Spectacular (NBC).
Friday (7/5): Trace Adkins & Colbie Caillat, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (NBC).
Upcoming Album Releases
Travis Tritt The Calm After ... (7/9)
Joey + Rory Inspired Songs of Faith and Family (7/16)
Pam Tillis and Lorrie Morgan Grits and Glamour (7/23)
Vince Gill & Paul Franklin Bakersfield (7/30)
Brett Eldredge Bring You Back (8/6)
Luke Bryan Crash My Party (8/13)
Charlie Worsham Rubberband (8/20)
Sheryl Crow Feels Like Home (9/10)
» Huddle Up, Team: Chris Collingsworth (l), Carrie Underwood and Al Michaels huddle up as part of the new NFL Sunday Night Football team. Carrie takes over the theme song "Waiting All Day For Sunday Night" when the season kicks off Sept. 5 on NBC-TV.