|» Hammer Time: Toby Keith started his Hammer Down Tour in Cincinnati Friday (6/14) and opened with a video that featured NASCAR driver Carl Edwards and Carrot Top. Toby's entrance came soon after with with fireworks and "Haven't Had A Drink' All Day." Highlights included a stop-down to salute firefighters, police and military personnel in the audience, and a "Beer For My Horses" cartoon featuring animated versions of Toby and Willie Nelson. There were big crowd reactions to "Weed With Willie" and "Red Solo Cup" before TK ended the set with Ted Nugent's "Stranglehold." The encore was 100% USA with red, white and blue guitars, lights and photos of U.S. soldiers on the screens for "American Soldier" and "Courtesy Of The Red, White And Blue" accompanied by a massive amount of pyrotechnics. Upcoming dates include Holmdel, NJ June 21, Philadelphia June 22 and Oshkosh, WI June 28.|
|» Crash His Party: "My favorite kind of party is just being on stage," says Luke Bryan, if you're looking to crash it. He's currently crisscrossing the country with the Dirt Road Diaries Tour and Luke is making sure everyone is high on summertime, by sticking with spring. "We try to turn all our shows into a kind of Spring Break feel, so that’s my deal. You know, just have some beer, some sunshine and some pretty country girls out there shaking it a little bit.”|
|» Day Job: Trisha Yearwood's Food Network show, Trisha's Southern Kitchen, tied for Outstanding Cullinary Program at the Daytime Emmy ceremony Sunday (6/16). She shares the win with Food Network's The Best Thing I Ever Made. Little Big Town's "Good Afternoon," the theme for ABC-TV’s Good Afternoon America, also took home a trophy for Outstanding Original Song.|
|» My Favorite Martin: Hunter Hayes and C.F. Martin & Co. have created the Encore Facebook contest running through Sept. 3. The winner will receive a new Martin OM-42 guitar (a $6,799 value), the same model Hayes plays, and six months of Martin SP Lifespan strings. Enter by liking Martin's page here. In other Hayes news, he sold out two upcoming dates at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium (Oct. 18-19) in under an hour, according to organizers.|
|» They Wear The Pants: Eli Young Band have partnered with workwear brand Dickies to offer fans an opportunity to meet the band while they're on the road with Kenny Chesney's No Shoes Nation Tour. Prizes includes air-travel, hotel accomodations and tickets to the Aug. 24 Foxboro, MA show. More here.|
|» Life Note: LoCash Cowboys were involved in a bus accident Friday (6/14) on the way to a show in Marinette, WI. A blown tire caused their tour bus to lose control and drive into a ditch. “The bus driver was really the hero in all of this,” said the duo’s Chris Lucas. "He manhandled the bus and miraculously somehow kept it from flipping over." LoCash’s Preston Brust added, "It was unbelievable. The driver literally saved our lives."|
|» In Case You Missed It: Capitol's Darius Rucker performed the National Anthem at Game 5 of the NBA Finals Sunday (6/16). Watch here.
Taylor Swift recently appeared on Britain's Got Talent to perform "Everything Has Changed" with former opening act, Ed Sheeran.Watch here.
Blake Shelton (6/18)
Anne Murray (6/20)
Chuck Wicks (6/20)
The late Chet Atkins (6/20)
Tuesday (6/18): Kellie Pickler, The View (ABC); Blake Shelton and Florida Georgia Line, The Voice (NBC).
Wednesday (6/19): Little Big Town, The View (ABC) and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
This Week's Album Releases
Hunter Hayes Encore (Atlantic/WMN)
An update of the self-titled debut, the album includes seven re-recorded and new tracks featuring current single "I Want Crazy," "Everybody's Got Somebody But Me" with Jason Mraz and a duet with I Want Crazy Tour opener Ashley Monroe called "What You Gonna Do."
LoCash Cowboys LoCash Cowboys (Average Joes)
Produced by Shannon "Fat Shan" Houchins, Noah Gordon and Jeffrey Steele, "Chase a Little Love" is the lead single of 12-tracks that include a collaboration with the late George Jones on "Independent Trucker."
Upcoming Album Releases
Various Artists Live From The Archives of 650 AM WSM - Volume 1 (6/25)
Gwen Sebastian Gwen Sebastian (6/25)
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 TBD (8/13)
Charlie Worsham Rubberband (8/20)
» I'm In Their House: Kenny Chesney continues his Twitter pic series, you know, the one where he climbs to the top level of a stadium, straps on a home team helmet and says, "Cheesney" before he plays. This time it's Arrowhead Stadium's Kansas City Chiefs.