PRESS CONF: Garth Brooks Announces Dec 17th at Bridgestone Arena Nashville

Garth Brooks To Perform
In Nashville For First
Time Since 1998

Concert Will Benefit Victims Of The Tennessee Floods

NASHVILLE, October 28, 2010 – For the first time since 1998, Garth Brooks is returning to Nashville to perform Friday, December 17th, 7:00 PM at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, benefiting The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee in support of all those affected by the disastrous flooding this past Spring.

Garth Brooks had this to say, “I have watched with great pride how the Volunteer State has pulled together to rise above the damage suffered by the floods.  It was a small church sign in Hendersonville that changed my life decades ago when I read, ‘Character is not created in is revealed.’ Tennessee has shown amazing character through all of this and it is an honor to get to be a part of the healing process.”

The tickets will be $25 plus handling with the hope that even those who suffered might be able to attend. 100% of the $25.00 ticket will go to those in need. "There will be only one arena show we'll do this year and it will be in Nashville," said Brooks. Further ticketing and concert information will be released at 12 noon central time, Wednesday, November 3rd.

Garth Brooks added, “Nashville is what young people dream of. As Miss Ellen said: disaster is only a disaster until the next one comes along. If you come to Vegas you'll see Garth Brooks and a guitar. If you come to Nashville you’ll see the band and me as you know us with the lighting and sound that you know. We are following in the footsteps of who already set the example. We are all Tennesseans helping Tennessee.”

The announcement was made Thursday morning from the State Capitol Building, with the attendance and support of Governor Phil Bredesen, Senator Lamar Alexander, Senator Bob Corker, Congressman Jim Cooper, Congressman Marsha Blackburn, Mayor Karl Dean and Ellen Lehman, President of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.

"The impact of May's flooding is still being felt in Tennessee as communities continue to rebuild," said Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen. "I'm extremely pleased to see that the great outpouring of support for flood victims that was a hallmark of the early response continues, and I appreciate the leadership of all the members of Nashville's music family who, like Garth, have organized events or established funds to help Tennesseans rebuild their lives."

“Many Tennesseans are still recovering from the biggest natural disaster since the president took office -- floods that left 47 Tennessee counties declared disaster areas. The flooding didn’t get much national attention, in part because Tennesseans started cleaning up and helping each other instead of looting and complaining,” Senator Lamar Alexander said. “I thank Garth for bringing Tennesseans together through his music and I know the proceeds from the concert, which he is generously contributing to the cleanup, will be put to good use helping people put their lives back together.”

"Because of the extraordinary compassion and commitment of our people, six months after the flood, Tennessee has made great progress—but the work is not done. I thank Garth for bringing his talents and energy to this cause. Music can be a powerful tool for good, and I hope the awareness and money this concert raises will help affected Tennesseans continue to recover and rebuild their lives and communities," said U.S. Senator Bob Corker, R-Tenn.

“I have been so proud of the way our community has responded to this disaster but we can’t forget that a lot of families are still recovering,” said Congressman Jim Cooper. “Garth Brooks’ dedication to the long term flood recovery continues to show that the volunteer spirit in Music City is stronger than ever.”

"Our salvation from the spring floods was the abundance of talented, resourceful, and compassionate Tennesseans.  Garth is certainly one of those talented, compassionate, and generous. I am happy to join the Davidson County delegation in thanking him for his efforts," said Congressman Marsha Blackburn.

"The generous spirit of the music industry has been a tremendous help in Nashville's recovery, not only through direct financial support of telethons and concerts, but also by showing the world that we're still Music City and that we're open for business," Nashville Mayor Karl Dean said. "I appreciate Garth for using his talent and resources to bring attention to the ongoing needs of our community and state as we work hard to recover, and for holding an event that will draw visitors from around the country to come experience all that Nashville has to offer."

“For a few flood victims, the journey to rebuilding their lives is complete. For most, however, the work to rebuild their lives and livelihood, their homes, and their broken hearts continues and will continue for months if not years,” said Ellen Lehman, president of The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. “We, as The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, remain grateful for and humbled by every gift we’ve received for flood relief. Garth Brooks’ donation of what may well be a once in a lifetime event will have enormous impact on the ongoing work of recovery and we are grateful.”

 Exclusive photos of the press conference can be seen at

Article: McGuinness Girls Songwriters Night aka "Boobs for Boobs" or "Tunes for Ta Ta's"

Bruce Wallace, Rhean Boyer & Brian White
 McGuinness Girls Night is a girls singer songwriter night every Monday night at Dan McGuinness Irish Pub on Music Row. This past Monday, however, the "GIRLS" were male hit songwriters who donned their favorite heels, low cut dresses and added some blue eye shadow, a little black eye liner and teased their hair!  All in fun, but the money raised all went to support Breast Cancer. 

Brian White and Bruce Wallace get their groove on!
 Not afraid to show their feminine sides, the tunesters adlibbed and changed a few words to their songs to make them gender correct, which brought much laughter from the crowd. Additional monies were raised through exaggerated antics by auctioning off their bra's or singing a raunchy tune.

L-R Jim "Moose" Brown, Wynn Varble , Gary Hannan and  Walt Aldridge

Some of this years "Girls" included Tim Buppert who wrote the hit singles “Another Nine Minutes” for Yankee Grey and “She’s Sure Taking It Well” for Kevin Sharp; Brian White who penned “Arise” for Avalon and “Watching You” for Rodney Atkins; Rhean Boyer, who is part of Carolina Rain, Bruce Wallace is known for “Old Fashioned Girl” by Jaydee Bixby; Pete Sallis has recordings by songs recorded by artists like George Canyon, Bucky Covington and Rodney Atkins; Thom Shepherd well known for “Redneck Yacht Club” for Craig Morgan, “Riding With Private Malone” for David Ball; Marty Dotson best known for Kenny Chesney’s “Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven”; Jim "Moose" Brown withone of his hits by Alan Jackson “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere”; Wynn Varble wrote "Have You Forgotten" with Darryl Worley and "Waitin' On A Woman" by Brad Paisely; Gary Hannan wrote the hit for Joe Nichols “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off” and Walt Aldridge penned Heartland’s “I Loved Her First” (just to drop a few names and titles of the hit songs these monster songwriters have written!)

Additional photos can be seen at

For more information on Dan McGuinness Pub visit

ARTICLE: Dierks Bentley Miles & Music For Kids

As fans and tourists watched, Dierks Bentley lead over 1200 motorcycles and riders down Broadway during his fifth annual “Miles & Music for Kids” ride as they pulled into Nashville’s Riverfront Park. The festivities continued when 5000 fans packed the Riverfront for a jam-style concert featuring Bentley, Miranda Lambert, Luke Bryan, Del McCoury, Heidi Newfield, Jerrod Niemann, Mat Kearney and Laura Bell Bundy. This year’s event drew more riders and concert attendees than ever before, raising an astounding $250,990.62 including $10,000 from a guitar auctioned onstage. for Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt. The “Miles & Music for Kids” series has raised over $1.5 million for Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in Phoenix, Dallas-Fort Worth, Atlanta and Seattle.

Going into this event, Miles & Music For Kids had brought in $1.2 million through Bentley’s fundraisers. When a close friend's child needed treatment at the Vanderbilt facility, Bentley became involved. At the time, the singer did not have kids of his own, but now has a daughter, Evie, and another child on the way. In five years, the Miles & Music program has grown from a small, hometown party into a nationwide effort that this year spread to Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix and Seattle.

Danny Shaw (Vanderbilt brain tumor patient) and Dierks Bentley

Bentley states “I’ve always loved motorcycles and when a friend of mine suggested we do something with Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital as a way to give back to the community.  We just put the two worlds together and now it’s been five years now and it’s been going great!”

The event started in Columbia, TN with registration, BBQ and live music from Ira Dean who has ridden in the past. When asked about his involvement this year, he responded with “It is so cliché but any time you can; give back.  One thing I love about country music and the format is it is a bunch of small town cats. I grew up in a small town in North Carolina and have been really blessed to be able to make a living, do what I do and play music. Anytime I can give anything back, ride a bike, play golf, help raise money for the people that need it, I do it. I try to make about 20 charity events a year. What Dierks is doing here is awesome, it has come a long way since the first year and it is just great. I saw some of the kids from Vanderbilt, they are riding today, that is awesome. Nashville is like a giant Mayberry.”
As tourists, bike enthusiasts and the fans admired the bikes that lined not only the riverfront, but also up and down first avenue, second and entire block of lower Broadway, the concert took on a personality all it’s own. Laura Bell Bundy and her alternate egos opened the show with her single “Giddy On Up” and as she hosted the event throughout the concert, kept the fans and the artists laughing and gave the special event a down home country feel; perhaps not so far removed from the beloved Minnie Pearl and her endearing persona.
Bentley kept the theme of the day rolling as he dedicated his hit song “Lot of Leavin’ Left To Do” to his fellow Harley riders, and chose a set list that was up-tempo and free as the wind with “Sideways”, Up On The Ridge” and “Feel That Fire.”  He also joined his guests on stage in collaborations that he admitted had not been rehearsed.  Luke Bryan and Bentley sang “Fishin’ In The Dark” by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and he joined Miranda Lambert and Jerrod Niemann on “Bad Angel” which Del McCoury also joined in on.

Jerrod Niemann also performed his recent hit, "Lover, Lover" and Heidi Newfield sang “Johnny and June” as well as others. She commented ”This is what life is really all about. It is not about yes, we love our songs and yes, we love success, all the things we are working towards and goals and meeting goals. It is really about helping others and keeping people in good health and reaching out a hand to someone that needs help. That is really what we are doing here today. We get to help while we are having a good time. That’s a great combination. “
Matt Kearney ("Closer to Love," "Nothing Left to Lose") was put on the spot by Bentley and out of the blue, asked him to choose a song to cover. The two of them collaborated on Tom Petty's "Learning to Fly" and had the crowd going wild.
Bentley closed the event with "Free and Easy (Down the Road I Go)" and reminded the crowd to come back and join the fun again next year as Miles & Music For Kids will hold events in Nashville, Chicago and Columbus, Ohio.
For more information on Miles & Music For Kids please visit

Additional exclusive photos of the event can be viewed at

INTERVIEW: Katrina Elam and Christopher Cain PURE COUNTRY 2:The Gift

“Dream big, reach high ,don’t ever be afraid to spread your wings and fly”
In 1992, Strait was the star in the movie, Pure Country, a love story and a movie about country music all wrapped together. A love song from the soundtrack, “I Cross My Heart,” ultimately reached No. 1 and became one of his biggest hits to date. In Pure Country II: The Gift,  It all starts with a gift; the gift of a truly transcendent singing voice, given by angels to a baby girl who is orphaned at birth. The beautiful Bobbie is raised by Auntie Ella, a loving, matronly black woman who always tells her "Never lie, be fair, and never break a promise"; the rules that the angels have set up for her to keep her gift. She obeys, her singing grows in power, and soon Bobbie has big plans for her big voice.
As a young woman, she buys a one-way bus ticket to Nashville, but life in the big city doesn't immediately go as planned.
It's up to Bobbie to reclaim what she has left behind in pursuit of fame and fortune, to return to those who truly love her, to appreciate the many gifts life has given her; with or without her voice. George Strait is not the lead character in this movie, nor is the theme about love, but it is about country music and getting back to the basic truths about love, fairness and being truthful.
I sat down with the star of the movie, Katrina Elam and the director, Christopher Cain after attending the private premier showing of the movie in Nashville.

Bev:  The movie was great, I truly enjoyed it. Since the movie was shot here in middle TN, in and around Nashville,  how did it feel to be sitting in the audience watching it with so many of the cast members?

KE: That part was so much fun. My favorite person was the character “Wes”, Adam Skaggs, so I was so excited to see him there. He cracks me up.

Bev: Katrina, you had no acting experience prior to this. Was this the first time you had seen the film or had you seen it prior to last night?

KE: I saw it a couple of times over the week, it was not all new to me, but is still kind of hard to get use to. I remember when I did my first music video and saw it on just a TV, I was “Oh my gosh”. Seeing myself on that big screen is scary.

Bev: Christopher when you look at the movie as a whole and the concept about singing from the heart and that music is a gift, you found a way to introduce “the gift” as a mystical or animated character that has a voice so to speak; how did you come up with that idea?

CC: I don’t know how I come up with these ideas but I have about one a minute. Most aren’t worth repeating. The concept for the movie came to me over time as I have been in the movie business a long time and I‘ve worked with a lot of young people; seen their lives disintegrate. If you look around, you see politicians and you see athletes and you see singers, actresses and actors and they seemingly have the world by the tail. They have fame and fortune and money and everything and all of a sudden they are headed for jail and rehab and their lives are destroyed. You ask yourself “why does this happen”. The reason is there are rules in life, if you follow them, life works, if you don’t follow them, it probably won’t. So that was the genesis for the story. The angels up in heaven firing down the gifts? I don’t know where that came from. It keeps it from becoming too serious and heavy. At this point in my life, I don’t want to be heavy and serious.

Bev: After the screening last night, what were the comments you received on that part? Did people like it? Not like it? What did you hear?

CC: I haven’t heard anything negative. I use to think people don’t tell you the truth, but they do. They tell you in interesting ways. If they like the movie, they will come up and tell you about scenes and specific things that touched them. If they don’t like it they usually don’t come up and talk to you. You can gauge either way. This movie is surprising me a bit. It was received better than expected. I thought it was going to be well liked, but I didn’t know it was going to be this well liked. I think it probably caught the studio off balance too.

Bev: Katrina, being that you didn’t have the acting experience, what was the hardest thing for you to get acclimated to? You have the singing and some music videos and that is kind of toying with it a little, but what was the hardest part of actually being in a movie like this?

KE: Well, day one, he threw me in the mud and there was more than mud in that mud.

Bev: How many takes did that scene take?

CC: A lot.

Bev: But you’re an Oklahoma girl and you’re use to that.

CC: It was a tough day but that is how you break a new actress in, throw them in the mud.

Bev: Was that the hardest scene?

KE: Learning all the lines was surprisingly easy for me. I had been really nervous about that and then Chris told me that we were only shooting a page of the script at a time. Honestly the little stuff was harder for me than what I expected.  I was surprised I could turn on the tears when I needed too, but the little stuff was hard for me.. 

CC: I can answer that question for her. I don’t think anything was hard for her. I think her instincts of how to approach acting are so “dead on” and I think the only thing that might have been difficult for her was the “unknown”, not knowing if she was any good or not; like the scene where she was crying on the porch and I think that was the third day. She said “did I really suck?” She didn’t know and I had to tell her no, she was fine. I have worked with, and we counted them, I think 19 actors with academy awards. I don’t think any of them are instinctively just right on from an acting stand point and no better than she is. I don’t think she had a false moment in the movie.

Bev: Is having a boyfriend in the movie hard for you; because you are just recently married?

KE: It was so weird because my husband is gorgeous and you would think I would be accustomed to being around men like that, but I was like a giggly little 14 year old. I remember when we had some people coming in for that part and the first guy that came in was a decent looking guy….

CC:  After the first scene she was fanning her face.

KE: I’m getting red just talking about it. My husband is so much cuter than any of these guys and I am a basket case. I did a music video with my husband once and even with that, they said to kiss and I was laughing and I said I couldn’t do it. It was hard.

Bev: Was there any scenes where people weren’t getting along? A difficult time connecting?  Not necessarily fighting on set, but things that didn’t click and you might have had to work through?

CC: Nothing she had, no nothing that she had at all. We shot this movie fast. I am too old to deal with people that are difficult. People from Nashville were so good and happy to have the job, they were glad to be there.

Bev: Are there any other events around Nashville that will be promoting the movie?

KE: I am doing the “Dream Big” song for the Inspirational Country Music Awards.

CC: Friday night we have an event at The Stage as a kick off for the movie and they are giving away posters and other things.

Bev: Katrina, I read in the production notes about the special needs children and how that touched you. Can you elaborate a little on that?

KE: A few years ago, I taught special needs gymnastics and I was glad that I had had that experience. Sometimes it can be intimidating, but I just love those kids and still have their pictures up on the refrigerator at home. I was hoping they could be there last night. It is amazing, I don’t know how you can be around those sweeties and not be inspired. They are just so sweet. I was telling someone that Chris did such a good job because it could have been patronizing and it wasn’t. It was just so sweet.

Bev: Was the ranch that was in the movie part of the “STARS” program, the horse program that they use so they were comfortable in their own setting or was it some other place?

CC: We shot at Charlie Daniel’s ranch; they came to his barn. As soon as you bring the kids in, you put them in three feet of sawdust and some horses they are fine. What was interesting was their response to the music. When she would start singing, you would see the kids up dancing, they are so happy and so delightful. I think all kids have special needs, especially mine…(laughter). Nobody is perfect or everyone is; one or the other. I am not sure which.

Bev: Will you be doing any charity work around this since we do have that theme in the movie?

CC: I don’t know. I say that because it has been a quick release of this movie, but as time goes on, I suspect there will be some things. From Dallas, we have started having some requests to do some things and I am happy to do that.

Bev: In the final scene where George Strait is with you and all of the children; being that the kids are special needs, how did they react to him?

KE: I don’t think they cared. There was one girl, her nickname is “Porkchop”, she stood up at one point…she recognized who he was and got quite animated.

CC:  George came walking in after the second take, getting ready to do it before the cameras and she said “Are you George Strait?” and he said he was and she grabbed him and wouldn’t let go. She had tears in her eyes. It got to George too.

Bev: Katrina, how has the movie changed your life?

KE: One of the things I loved about this project is it was done in only four weeks. It all happened so fast and it was so much fun. With the music business, it dominates your life all the time, but with this project, it was great.

Bev: I saw you when you came in last night and there weren’t a lot of people rushing up to you. After the screening, as the movie is coming out, is that going to change? People are going to recognize your face even more.

KE: I don’t know. I don’t really care about that. Nashville is pretty cool about treating everyone without a lot of attention and fanfare if you are out and about.
Bev: Chris, what else can we expect from this besides the awards?

CC: I don’t know about that. The movie is what it is and is an entity by itself. Pure Country, the first one, still runs. Sixteen or seventeen years later it is still out there. Unfortunately, the bad movies still run too, but not as often. It will be around for a long time. That is one of those things about movies and music; you write a great song and it is going to be there. I like the movie, I am happy others are enjoying the movie.

Bev: What was George Strait’s take on it? Have you heard from him?

CC: I’m never going to let him see this movie. (laughter) After the first “Pure Country” he got a lot of offers to do movies; turned them all down. His answer was hey look, I made one movie, I like it, I dodged a bullet, it could have been terrible, I’m not taking that risk again. I called him for this and he said he would do it. He came in and did it and then about a week later, he called me and said he would be interested in doing another movie if we could find something. He said he didn’t have to be the star, he could be the second or third guy. I told him the day we shot his scenes that he would get the bug again.

Bev: The scene where he hits the father in the movie and then he is walking out. Obviously he didn’t really hit him and get hurt, but does he enjoy that type of stuff because he is not a physical person or angry person I should say.

CC: If you remember, in Pure Country, he did the same thing, but it is just acting.

Bev: Katrina, had you met George before? Was it intimidating?

KE: No, I hadn’t met him before, this was the first time. It was intimidating, but he is so nice. I think within about ten minutes he was talking to my Mom about lion hunting in Africa.

Bev: As far as promoting, are you going to utilize the social media websites like Facebook and the others?

CC: We hope to. The website is up now and the trailers are out. I think Facebook started today. It is so fast. You put something on Facebook and 30 million people know about it. We think it is going to work.
Bev: Katrina it is wonderful to see you again and was so fun to share the premiere night with you, and Christopher it has been such a pleasure to meet you and get to know you. I look forward to seeing the movie again and more from you in the future.
KE: Bev, it was so fun and I am sure we will see each other again soon. Thank you for everything.
CC: Yes, thank you and I hope to see you again as well.

For more information on Pure Country II: The Gift visit  

Interview by Bev Moser  Transcribed by Pam Stadel

REVIEW: Opry Goes Pink with The Judds

Grand Ole Opry  featured its second annual "Opry Goes Pink" show on Friday Oct. 15th.
In conjunction with Women Rock For The Cure TM and Susan G. Komen for the Cure® in the fight against breast cancer with its second annual "Opry Goes Pink" show.

FOX News anchor Greta Van Susteren, a guest announcer for a portion of the night's show, introduced the GRAMMY award-winning duo The Judds who opened the show by flipping the switch which turned all lighting pink on the Opry stage's signature barn backdrop pink to spotlight breast cancer awareness and kicking off the evening with their new single “I Will Stand By You.”

Actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley; also a guest announcer introduced the Greater Nashville Affiliate Susan G. Komen for the Cure® 2010 Honorary Survivor of the Year, Lisa Hall.

In addition to The Judds, the show included performances by John Anderson, whose wife is a two time breast cancer survivor. Joey + Rory, Marty Stuart, Jean Sheppard, Bill Anderson, Mike Snyder and Opry legend Little Jimmy Dickens who wore a bright pink Manuel rhinestone suit.

Scrolling on the big screens surrounding the stage were names of breast cancer survivors who were listed in honor and in memory, which added another personal touch to the fight against cancer.

About Greta Van Susteren
Greta Van Susteren joined Fox News Channel in January 2002 as the host of the prime-time news and interview program, "On the Record with Greta Van Susteren" (10-11 p.m. ET/PT Mondays through Fridays). "On the Record" has been the highest rated cable news program in the 10PM timeslot for more than 8 ½ years straight. While at the FOX News Channel, Van Susteren has traveled the globe to such places as North Korea, Pakistan and Afghanistan. She has interviewed high-profile political guests including President George W. Bush, President Bill Clinton, President George H.W. Bush, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and then-Senator Barack Obama. Van Susteren has represented various clients in civil and criminal cases during her career as a trial attorney. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Van Susteren received a bachelor's degree with distinction in economics. She earned a Juris Doctor from Georgetown Law in 1979 and a Master of Law from the school in 1982. Van Susteren is married to John P. Coale and lives in Washington, D.C.
About Kimberly Williams-Paisley
Kimberly Williams-Paisley first lit up the screen as a radiant young bride in the comedy feature film series Father of the Bride and Father of the Bride II. Recently seen starring in the Lifetime Movie Amish Grace, she co-starred for eight seasons in the hit ABC TV sitcom According to Jim, for which she also directed three episodes.  She has starred in feature films, written and directed award-winning short films including Shade and has performed on Broadway.  In addition to her acting work, Williams-Paisley is an accomplished writer, with published articles for In Style and a popular column for Redbook entitled My Life as a New Wife. She and her father Gurney Williams co-authored the children's book, Henry and the Hidden Veggie Garden. Williams-Paisley is married to Opry member Brad Paisley and lives in Franklin, TN with their two sons.
About the Grand Ole Opry
The Grand Ole Opry presents the best in country music live every week from Nashville, Tenn.  Celebrating 85 years of entertainment, the Opry can be heard on 650 WSM-AM, SIRIUS XM Satellite Radio, and The syndicated weekly program, America's Opry Weekend, airs on country radio stations across America and on the Armed Forces Radio Network. The Grand Ole Opry is owned by Gaylord Entertainment (NYSE: GET), a Nashville-based hospitality and entertainment company that also owns and operates Gaylord Hotels.  For more information, visit or
About Women Rock For The Cure
WRFTC was founded in 2007 by four friends with ties to the music industry: Jensen Sussman, Liz Lee Schullo, Rebekah Lee Beard and Tara Austin who all met through the Society of Leaders in Development (SOLID), an organization for young music business professionals.  With the support of SOLID, the girls set out to organize an all-female, writer-in-the round benefit concert - later called Women Rock For The Cure - to help raise awareness and funds for SOLID's Race For The Cure team.  Since then, WRFTC has worked to support the Greater Nashville affiliate of Susan G. Komen For The Cure®, raising money and increasing breast cancer awareness locally.  After two amazing years of standing-room-only concerts, the founders decided to make WRFTC a non-profit organization.  With the group's new status, WRFTC is pinker than ever and always rockin' to reach the organization's vision; WRFTC is committed to fighting breast cancer by utilizing the passion, creativity and strength of the entertainment industry to find inspiring ways to raise money for Susan G. Komen for the Cure® Greater Nashville, as well as creating awareness programs for men and women of all ages.  For more information, visit
About the Greater Nashville Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure
The Greater Nashville Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure-along with those who generously support us with their talent, time and resources-is working to better the lives of those facing breast cancer in our community. We join more than 100,000 breast cancer survivors and activists around the globe as part of the world’s largest and most progressive grassroots network fighting breast cancer. Through events like the Komen Greater Nashville Race for the Cure, we have invested $2.5 Million in local breast health and breast cancer awareness projects in 11 counties over the past ten years. Up to 75 percent of net proceeds generated by the Komen Greater Nashville Affiliate stay in the Nashville area while the remaining income goes to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Award and Research Grant Programs supporting research, awards and educational and scientific programs around the world. Join us by calling 615-383-0017 or visiting us online at

REVIEW: Amber Hayes & Ty Herndon Industry Showcase

Amber Hayes

Mercy Lounge was filled with fun on Tuesday evening as members of the music industry and media enjoyed funnel cakes, hand-squeezed lemonade and new music from label mates Amber Hayes and Ty Herndon. Nashville-based independent label FUNL Music hosted the special event to showcase the artists on their roster.

Amber Hayes took to the stage first and wowed those in attendance with several songs including “Wait,” “Right As Rain” and “C’mon.” “C’mon,” is positioned to move into the Top 40 on the Music Row chart.  In addition to a pair of brand new tracks, she also unveiled a swampy, blues-infused cover of Dolly Parton’s classic “9 to 5” to the delight of the more than 150 attendees on hand.

Amber Hayes was born an entertainer. She was singing, performing, even hosting her own 30-minute Country music show, "Amber & Friends" at state fairs, private parties and corporate events by the time she was eight. Since moving to Nashville a few years ago, Amber has had many opportunities to share the stage with some of country music's hottest new stars like Rodney Atkins, as well as legendary artists Marty Stuart, T.G. Sheppard, Jeannie Seely and others. She also nabbed the coveted role of Kathy Twitty in the national touring play, "It's Only Make Believe – The Conway Twitty Musical," about the life and music of Conway Twitty. The play debuted to rave reviews and a sold out crowd at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville before touring the country.

The audience welcomed to the stage Ty Herndon who sang several hit songs from his past albums. His songs brought much applause as he sang “What Mattered Most” and “Living in a Moment” and he also performed material from his current project, including the title track from the album, “Journey On.”  Herndon revealed that the song has been selected as part of a special campaign to fight ALS in partnership with former NFL player Kevin Turner’s charity foundation.  Herndon also performed “When We Fly,” the song that earned him a Dove Award earlier this year for Gospel Bluegrass Song of the Year. 

Herndon  just released his eighth studio album in a 15 year career that has earned him three Number One singles and a total of seven Top Ten hits. It is also the first album on which Ty took on the role of songwriter to tell the deeply personal story of the redemption and faith he experienced over the past few years. The resulting tracks are as honest as they are inspiring.

For more information on Amber Hayes visit

For more information on Ty Herndon visit

Additional photos of this event can be seen by visiting

2010 Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Dinner and Induction Ceremony

L-R Pat Alger, Steve Cropper, Frances Williams Preston, AT&T Tennessee President Gregg Morton and Roger Murrah, Hall of Fame Chairman
October 17th found the Nashville Convention Center filled with hit songwriters, artists, musicians and Music Row VIP’s during an evening that celebrated songs covering many genres, a multitude of styles and spanning centuries as hit songwriters Pat Alger and Steve Cropper, the late pop/country star Paul Davis, and America's first professional songwriter, Stephen Foster joined the honored list of names inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame.

The Nashville Songwriters Association International’s Professional Songwriter’s Division kicked off the evening by presenting plaques to award winners for achievements over the past year.

In a special tribute, Foundation Board Member Layng Martine, Jr. presented the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation Mentor Award to longtime BMI CEO Frances Preston, which, in her honor, was named the Frances Williams Preston Mentor Award. "When it comes to music industry executives, Frances is an icon," said Murrah. "She's loved and respected around the world and has certainly done more than her share of mentoring others, so it is only fitting that this award be named for her."

Mayor Karl Dean and Steve Bogard, President NSAI
A President’s Choice Award went to Nashville Mayor Karl Dean, in recognition of his support for the songwriting community and dedication to songwriters.

Ten songs, informally dubbed "The Songs I Wish I'd Written" is always a favorite part of the evening, but because of a tie this year, 11 songs were honored. Presented by Bart Herbison Executive Director and Steve Bogard, President of NSAI the Recipients included A Little More Country Than That (Rory Lee Feek, Don Poythress, Wynn Varble / recorded by Easton Corbin); Big Green Tractor (Jim Collins, David Lee Murphy / recorded by Jason Aldean); I Run To You (Tom Douglas, Dave Haywood, Charles Kelley, Hillary Scott / recorded by Lady Antebellum); Need You Now (Dave Haywood, Josh Kear, Charles Kelley, Hillary Scott / recorded by Lady Antebellum); Red Light (Dennis Matkosky, Melissa Peirce, Jonathan Singleton / recorded by David Nail); Southern Voice (Bob DiPiero, Tom Douglas / recorded by Tim McGraw); The Climb (Jessi Alexander, Jon Mabe / recorded by Miley Cyrus); The House That Built Me (Tom Douglas, Allen Shamblin / recorded by Miranda Lambert); Use Somebody (Caleb Followill, Jared Followill, Matthew Followill, Nathan Followill / recorded by Kings Of Leon); White Liar (Natalie Hemby, Lambert / recorded by Miranda Lambert); You Belong With Me (Liz Rose, Swift / recorded by Swift).

Steve Bogard & Taylor Swift
 The Songwriter/Artist of the Year was presented for the third time in four years to Taylor Swift, who scored self-penned hits of her own. “Since I can remember, my favorite thing in the world was a good story,” she said. “Then I discovered this town called Nashville, where they tell the coolest stories, and in my opinion they tell them in the most magical ways. I’m having a blast telling stories.”

Chris DuBois who is responsible for the mega-hits by Brad Paisley (“Then” and “Welcome To The Future,” )Craig Morgan (“This Ain’t Nothin’”) and many other songs was the recipient of the songwriter of the year award.

Roger Murrah, Chairman of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame Foundation (NaSHOF), presided over the special evening which celebrated the 40th Annual Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony. A few of the artists who helped pay special tribute to the legendary writers included Tanya Tucker, T. Graham Brown, Jim Lauderdale, Garth Brooks, Paul Overstreet and Jimmy Wayne. "How fitting it is for us to recognize these incredibly gifted songwriters in this manner. If there was a way to calculate the emotional effect their songs have had on our lives, it would boggle our minds," said Roger Murrah,

Stephen Foster, with songs from as far back as the 1800s include the well known tune “Camptown Races.” Mockingbird Sun created and performed a medley of some of Foster's most recognizable songs, including “Oh Susanna”, “Farewell My Lilly Dear”, “Beautiful Dreamer “and “My Old Kentucky Home”. Grammy-winning Americana singer-songwriter Jim Lauderdale sang with “Hard Times Come Again No More”. Stephen Foster has been called the father of American music and was inducted by Tamara Saviano, Grammy winning producer of "Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs of Stephen Foster." Accepting for Foster was Blair School of Music Professor of Musicology Dale Cockrell.

Paul Davis wrote hits including “Ride 'Em Cowboy”,” '65 Love Affair”, “Cool Night,” “Bop,” “I Go Crazy” and “Love Me Like You Used To.” His songs often featured sophisticated, pop-leaning lyrics and storytelling country lyrics. Paul Overstreet a Hall of Fame songwriter himself, inducted Davis, who passed away in 2008. Longtime friends J. Fred Knobloch, Kyle Lehning, Ed Seay, Ronn Price, Anthony Martin and Jennifer Kimball performed a medley of hits including: “Cool Night”, “I Go Crazy”, “Bop” and “Sweet Life”. Tanya Tucker closed the performance with “Love Me Like You Used To”. Davis' son Jonathan, accepted for his father.

Pat Alger, Jimmy Wayne, Garth Brooks and Allen Reynolds

Garth Brooks, whose version of “Unanswered Prayers” became a signature hit and who called Alger “a great, great writer,” not only sang “The Thunder Rolls” and “That Summer” for Alger on Sunday but praised him with accolades, as did contemporary country hit-maker Jimmy Wayne who was handpicked by Pat Alger to sing a three-song medley of 'Goin' Gone,' 'True Love' and 'Small Town Saturday Night,' all of which were written by Alger.

Allen Reynolds, another Hall of Fame songwriter, inducted his longtime friend

During his moment on stage, Pat Alger proclaimed, “I remember doing ‘Unanswered Prayers’ for the first time, at the Bluebird (Cafe), and there was an ovation after the first chorus. That was a special one.”

Steve Cropper

Musician and producer Tony Brown provided Cropper’s formal induction into the Hall. Young Nashville singer/guitarist Tyler Bryant performed a medley of Cropper’s hits, and T. Graham Brown delivered “(Sittin’ On) the Dock Of the Bay.”, which also included an audience “whistle along.”

Often applauded for his remarkable electric guitar work , Cropper remarked “The feel was the thing,” of the hits he co-wrote. “We weren’t trying for poetry.”

A very special moment on Cooper's Kitchen with Cooper Boone and Julie Roberts

Cooper's Kitchen started off as a silly video that Hollywood Music Award winner Cooper Boone and his buddy Will Knox put on YouTube. When he won the Hollywood Music Award in 2008, he was asked by several agencies about "that cooking show". A light went off in his head and now two years in the making and with a great team put together, it has evolved into where his two loves and food. There is cooking, singing, and laughter. It's where you get served up some down home cooking with a side of music!

Cooper Boone has shared the stage with Craig Morgan, Trace Adkins, Angela Kaset, Anthony Krizan (Spin Doctors), The Bacon Brothers and has co-written two albums worth of award winning songs. He's now combining his two passions of music and cooking and has created the hit webisode series, Cooper's Kitchen,

Cooper started cooking as a latchkey kid in his Midwest home of hot-dish country. As he grew, so did his list of ingredients - from rice and Velveeta, to the more nuanced flavors of Artisan butter, rosemary, grass-fed beef and chipotle peppers. His cooking leaves the barn doors open for inspiration while resting on tried and true family recipes.

In the kitchen and in life, Boone always has more than a few pots cooking on the range. Born in the Mississippi River valley in southern Minnesota to a family of teachers, he earned his doctorate and practiced psychology with the New York City poor for many years. In his late 30's, Boone circled back to his long-standing passions of music and food.

While Nashville was recovering from the devastation of the flooding in May, Cooper organized a fundraiser which was held on May 24th at The Bitter End in NYC. Fans came from all over and the ones who could not come in person also donated. It was a very memorable evening. He chose to give the money raised directly to another country singer-songwriter that was affected by the flood; one who’s story really touched his heart.” I was raised with the value of being a community to others is in my's just something I do." says Cooper.

 On a recent special taping of Coopers Kitchen in Nashville, Cooper invited country star Julie Roberts and her mom, Lucy, to join him on the show and presented her with a check from the fundraiser. “I had such a great time with Julie and her Mom Lucy. We laughed so much my face hurt by the end of the taping. Julie has such a great sense of humor coupled with deep deep sincerity. My new goal in life is to get Lucy's meatloaf recipe!"

Julie responded with “Meeting Cooper Boone and cooking with him and Mama was one of the most memorable moments in the kitchen for me! We made two appetizers that Mama and I are definitely going to use for our Christmas gatherings this year! We are very thankful for Cooper inviting us on his show and also for the gift he gave to us to help rebuild our home. He is a true blessing and we hope to cook with him again!! Yes, Mama is going to teach him how to make meatloaf next time!!!”

During this episode the two country crooners cooked up some special and tasty bacon appetizers..... Devil's on Horseback and Sweet Piggies. (you can find the recipe’s by following these links:  and )

The special webisode program which has become known for cooking and singing would not be complete without a tune or two, and they chose to perform Julie’s hit song “Break Down Here” for this show.

Please make sure you visit:  and look for this special show, but also check out past episodes as well.

For more information on Cooper Boone visit

For more information on Julie Roberts visit  

INTERVIEW: Jett Williams for Hank Williams Mother’s Best

Hank Williams recorded songs for his Mother’s Best shows that he never recorded elsewhere, like “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain,” “Cool Water,” “Lonely Tombs,” “On Top of Old Smoky,” and many more. He also sung some of his hits for the first time anywhere. What about “Cold, Cold Heart” just days after it was written? Hank and the Drifting Cowboys were so unsure of the arrangement that steel guitarist Don Helms came in late! Other songs date back to the 1700s and 1800s. Hank had rarely if ever recorded old songs or songs by his favorite artists. Here, he not only sings them but often talks about them. Truly a treasure trove!

I sat down with Jett Williams, daughter of the late Hank Williams, and visited with her about the music and the new box set that is available through TIME LIFE. The shape of the box is that of a vintage radio just like the ones that filled the homes of our grandparents. The box comes complete with a knob on the front that when pushed, plays a sampling of the music; looking at it from the back you see the lights and wiring, you feel like you have taken a step back in time.

Bev: Can you tell me how you came up with the idea for the box set or who came up with it?

JW: What we wanted to do with the box set is come up with a type of packaging to take the buyer and the listener back to that era that’s contained within the set; vintage 1951. This is a replica of what the standard model radio probably was in every home in that particular era. I think it is more like 1930-ish but this would have been the model if we walked in someone’s front door. This is the one they would have listened to the Grand Ole Opry on and the one they turned on in the morning. This is the median that people had their communication, their entertainment and their recreation on. The detail that Time Life has done on the box set from the back to the front, if this was in the home, it would look like this. As you open the box set, it takes you into that period. The information that should be noted is these recordings came from acetate. Acetate is a metal disc that they would put down, in the infancy of recording.

My Dad did a 15 minute radio show at WSM five days a week at 7:15 am. His touring schedule was so intense he couldn’t be there. What they did is they put this in the can so to speak. There were 72 shows of that year that he was not in the studio. Even when this played over the radio, probably 99.9% of the people believed he was in the studio because many people didn’t understand that things were duplicated. One thing that is fascinating about this box set is if you are listening to show 52, there is also a poster in there and a map of the country and it lists the shows. You can actually go on the map and find where he was at when the show aired. The acetates were designed to play only one time. They would record them and after that show played, the acetate was discarded. Acetate is very fragile also so they are not made to play over and over. The fact that they were saved from the dumpster and they were in the condition they were in for us to make the transfer was a miracle in itself. I actually have physical possession of the acetates. The CDs in the box set are actual pictures of the hub of the acetate with the engineer’s grease pen writing from the show. The jackets the original acetates are in are like a paper sack. We tried to duplicate baby acetates to create that “flavor”. The book is not a booklet, it is a book. Over the years there has been some repetition, but we tried to put in photos people hadn’t seen, stories and things like that so that the buyers are not buying just another piece of “slice and dice” type work.

Another fascinating thing is that unless you heard him sing that morning in 1951, you never heard him sing this version of this song and there are 143 songs on here. My dad emcee’s the show; so you are talking about 80 hours plus of him talking, setting the songs up, telling you why he wrote a song, what his favorite songs are, talking about current events, bantering with the band, so you actually meet the guy; Hank Williams. Before, for the most part, he was either an 8x10 glossy photo that we’ve all seen or you have heard him on an MGM master, but the fidelity of these recordings, the experts say, are as good if not better than the MGM masters. If you look at the box set you can almost smell those biscuits, feel that coffee and you think he is in the kitchen with you singing to you.

Bev: What inspired you to do a box set? How much input did you have as far as the concept for it all to come together?

JW: When the estate signed with Time Life, it was not a licensing type agreement, it was a partnership. Time Life partnered with the estate and we had a complete say so on every picture, every detail. For the most part, the people at Time Life would come up with ideas, they would send it, we would say yes, no, great idea, what about this, what about that. This is what Time Life does, this is their forte. I grew up with Time Life and Reader’s Digest. What we wanted to create is something that will eventually be downloadable. The only thing is you can’t download this map and this book, the CDs and the packaging. We didn’t want to create something that was just the same packaging. I think this is very innovative in the fact that it is a concept as opposed to just a box set. It is also interactive in that you turn the radio on, you pick up the map and then you can trace this as opposed to just putting it in there with another book.

Bev: Have you had an opportunity to talk to any of his fans or anyone that has it to get their reaction?

JW: The interviews that I have done, the reviews that have come out, the fans that have come to wherever I am at and have the set, they are in awe. We have put out two other box sets that are a part of this collection and people that have bought them have been blown away by the fidelity and by what comes with the complete set. This is a complete set in that it even has the demo that my Dad did with Aunt Jemima. In the studio, they did a pitch to Aunt Jemima pancakes and syrup. My Dad along with Owen Bradley and the Beasley Sisters did a demo to pitch to them; I guess they didn’t get the sponsorship but, it is really cool to hear Aunt Jemima say “Good mornin’ honey”. Another really unique thing is my Dad did a public service announcement that is about 14 to 16 minutes long for Venereal Disease. It is funny because they blamed the woman way back then. The point is the set has the radio shows in the fifteen minute format but also has some of the other things that were done during that 1951 year in that studio. There have been other complete box sets on Hank Williams but, they only had what they had. Hank Jr. and I had to go to court for over eight years to get clear title and ownership to this material so this is the complete set of the “mother’s best”. This has been in the works since 1951—that’s 60 years.

Bev: As you were going through all the songs, stories and so forth, was there anything that really hit you hard more so than something else?

JW: A couple of things. Most of the songs he does, he sets up on the radio show. He sets up one of them and tells he is going to do one of the top tunes in country but, I am not going to sing it the way it’s out now, I’m going to sing it the way my Grandmamma put me to bed. The song is “On Top Of Old Smokey”. For me, as his daughter, gave me just a little slice of the family history. When I hear it now, I can imagine him as a little boy going to bed, his Grandmother tucking things down and then singing the song in this more Appalachian type, Alabama, grass roots version as opposed to what would have been the pop style. Another thing I find endearing is that because it is live even though it was on a disc, back then if you made a mistake, they would have to start over from the beginning with a new disc. They said that how many discs you used reflected on how much they would use you in the show. Every time you wasted a disc, you wasted money. They kept the mistakes there so my Dad made some mistakes and they kept them. One is he tells the band that he wants to play “I Saw The Light”, it’s a song I wrote and I would like to do it so kick it off. They kick it off, playing “I Saw The Light” but he starts singing “Precious Memories”. Then he realizes he really messed up, how he handles it and gets out of that dilemma. For me as an entertainer, it is interesting in the fact that there is an old saying that says “it’s not what happens but how you handle it.”

There are other things. He had had back surgery and one of the things that had been written about him was how much pain he was in. On the recordings he is doing the shows, but he is sitting in a chair and as he is talking, you can hear the pain in his voice as he is trying to get up out of the chair to get over to the microphone. He tells the listeners that he has had the operation and you hurt for him; being able to hear him be “human”, I guess, as opposed to that 45 or that cassette or CD that we’ve had; to actually experience the pain, to hear him laugh. The other thing I find fascinating is a lot of people prefer the dark side. Here you have a guy at 7:15 in the morning, 72 shows, sharp as a tack, he’s laughing, he’s cracking jokes and you see this light hearted Hank Williams-professional but there isn’t any “boohooing” or so down he can’t make the shows. It shows you a side of Hank Williams, a dimension that I don’t think that we’ve ever had the privilege of being able to hear or know that side of him.

Bev: What store shelves will you find the boxes sets on? Online?

JW: Right now you can buy it online at which is direct from Time Life or from the Ernest Tubb Record shop where you can order online or call. The reason for that is not everyone has the internet and we wanted to make sure that people that don’t have the internet can still purchase this set.

Bev: Will we see a lot of advertisements from Time Life in the different magazines and such?

JW: I have not seen anything scheduled for television ads or things like that. I guess it will hit the market on the internet which is different than the other box sets that we did. Right now they are keeping it in house. Maybe later there will be more media such as radio ads and television.

Bev: Besides yourself and Time Life, who else was involved with this?

JW: My husband Keith Adkinson and I were the executive producers with Time Life and that was the sole team of putting together the whole project. Janet Bozeman has done a superb job on the publicity. It has been a really close knit group of people that have worked on this project. I would say we have been on this with Time Life for four years. The thing is when you look at the packaging and the detail; it is so much more than just a product. You can see pride; you can see that it is a labor of love. The other thing that concerned my husband and I was that this is so rare; this treasure trove of material has never happened before and I don’t think it will ever happen again. We wanted to make sure the way it was presented to the world, because my Dad’s music supersedes country, and it is universal is that this is something that if he was alive today, he would say “that’s the way I would have liked it done”. It is easy to take the easy path and just take a check with whatever amount on it, let someone license it and they can either put it on the shelf or throw it out there in hopes that someone may or may not like it. They would say Hank doesn’t need any help, he can sell himself. He deserves the best and his music needs to have the embodiment of the presentation to compliment what is inside this box.

Bev: When I look at it, it takes me back immediately to my Grandmother’s kitchen. Both my Grandmothers had a radio like that and I remember walking in and that was the first thing we did; turn on the radio.

JW: We need to go back to our roots. As for his music, people ask me why I think it has lasted. It is generational and what you just said, people say “I was your Daddy’s biggest fan”; “My Momma just loved your Daddy”. I am pleased and in awe of the young people; I call it getting in the “Hank zone”. I ask them why they are listening to Hank and they say they heard Hank and he is the real deal. This one kid told me “he’s authentic”. I think where we are at in the world and in this country, is everyone has had too much of everything, too many options and too much whatever to where everyone is starting to say they want to pick and choose how they spend their time. People are starting to focus on things they want, not just in country music either. I think people are looking to go back to more basics and more grass roots.

Bev: Was there anything that scared you about putting this together?

JW: When I first heard old radio shows, I thought “Oh good Lord”, I didn’t want to struggle through the gramophone or whatever. As I said before, the experts all say that the recordings are as good if not better than the MGM masters. I think they are better because in that point and time in my Dad’s career he was at his zenith. They are not masters, no filtering, and no tweaking. These are a one time take on that microphone in their purest form and he is “take your breath away” good.

Bev: What emotions did you experience the first time you heard these recordings?

JW: It makes me feel fantastic. The thing about it is I would dare anyone to stand in front of a microphone with that type of technology and come out with that kind of vocals and that intensity and that phrasing. There is a guy in the music industry that I played this for and he said he had always heard Hank Williams, but he didn’t think he have ever really sat down and listened to Hank Williams. I had a friend that was listening to this the other day and was going to turn the television on and she stopped and said she didn’t; she didn’t want to leave 1951. Another thing is this is a snapshot of our American history because they are talking about current affairs, what the weather is like, what’s happening in the country, what’s happening in the world. The jingles on the shows are scripted, but the actual talking and bantering on the show is “free”. You can tell how intelligent my Dad is; he is talking about Napoleon Bonaparte, the President and all of these things that are happening. Also, and this is my belief, he wasn’t handed a list of songs he was suppose to do. He sings all kinds of songs and it shows you what Hank Williams liked.

This product is something that you can put in your record collection. This is something you can hand down to your children. If people come to Nashville, they need to go down on Broadway to the Ernest Tubb Record shop and visit. My Dad performed there and they have the box sets there.

Bev: Jett, I think you and I could talk for hours about this, because my passion for the music goes way back and I love your dad’s music. Thank you for sharing the personal memories and feelings and giving such an insight to this project.

JW: My pleasure, this has been a wonderful visit and I look forward to seeing you again real soon.

For more information on this amazing set of music visit

transcribed by Pam Stadel