Country star trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockSara Evans scored her most recent #1 with this hit from 2010 that was co-written by Lady Antebellum's Hillary Scott. Can you name it? ANSWER:  "A Little Bit Stronger."

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Jake Owen maps out a search for "Good Company" that will take him across the globe

RCA NashvilleJake Owen will set out on his Good Company World Tour this fall, playing arenas and amphitheaters across the U.S. on a trek named after his latest single. The dates also will extend into Canada and Europe in 2018.

In the meantime, Jake has a full slate of performances set for spring and summer, including his first-ever headlining show at Music City’s Ascend Amphitheater on Thursday. Just last week, the Florida native helped raise more than $100,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital with a show in Sayreville, New Jersey.

Jake’s new single, “Good Company,” is the third release from his American Love album, which also boasts his recent #1, “American Country Love Song.”

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Blink-182, Pierce the Veil, A Day to Remember & more nominated for "Alternative Press" Music Awards

ABC/Paula LoboThe nominees for the 2017 Alternative Press Music Awards have been revealed, and they include Blink-182, Pierce the Veil and A Day to Remember.

All three bands are up for the Artist of the Year title, where they'll compete against Green Day, Fall Out Boy, The Pretty Reckless, Panic! at the Disco, Good Charlotte, Sum 41 and Machine Gun Kelly.

Pierce the Veil's Misadventures is nominated for Album of the Year, and their single "Circles" earned a nod for Song of the Year. A Day to Remember's "Paranoia" is also up for Song of the Year.

You can view the full list of nominees, and vote for your favorites, now via

The 2017 Alternative Press Music Awards take place July 17 in Cleveland, Ohio, and will be hosted by Black Veil Brides frontman Andy Biersack. The show's performancer lineup includes Pierce the Veil, The Pretty Reckless, Korn, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Against Me!, All Time Low, and New Years Day.

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Beyoncé creates new scholarship as "Lemonade" scores global best-seller title 

ABC/Image Group LABeyoncé has created a new scholarship program for girls who want to run the world.

The singer's Formation Scholars award, which was announced on Lemonade's one-year anniversary yesterday, will be presented to four lucky incoming, current or graduate students attending four institutions of higher learning during the 2017-2018 school year.  

The participating schools include Berklee College of Music, Howard University, Parsons School of Design and Spelman College. Young women who are "unafraid to think outside the box and are bold, creative, conscious and confident," and whose focus of study includes music, literature, African-American studies or the creative arts. are urged to apply. 

Those interested in learning more information are directed to contact each school.  

In other news, Lemonade was officially 2016's biggest-selling album globally, according to IFPI's recently published Global Music Report

The report, which looks at the number of amount of discs and songs sold around the globe, reports that Bey's hit album sold 2.5 million units last year, beating Adele's 25, which sold 2.4 million, and Drake's Views, which moved 2.3 million copies. 

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Status Quo reissuing three albums in deluxe versions

UMeStatus Quo are reissuing deluxe editions of three albums from their catalog.

The British boogie-blues veterans will offer multi-disc versions of 1976’s Blue for You, 1980’s Just Supposin’, and 1981’s Never Too Late on May 26. Between them, the reissues will include 36 previously unreleased tracks or versions of songs. Each deluxe edition also comes with an enhanced booklet, rare photos and memorabilia from the band’s personal collection.

Blue for You was the final album to feature Status Quo’s classic four-piece line up. The two-CD reissue has been remastered and includes a bonus disc of demos and live tracks.

Just Supposin’ made the Top Five of the U.K. charts upon its release. The reissue also comes with a bonus disc of demos and live recordings.

Never Too Late was the last album to feature drummer John Coghlan. The deluxe, three-CD reissue includes a bonus disc featuring a 1981 concert.

Full details and complete track lists are available on the band’s website.


ABBA offers deluxe reissue of 'Gold: Greatest Hits'

Credit: UMeABBA is getting in on the reissue gold rush.

The Swedish hitmakers will release a 25th anniversary limited-edition version of their 1992 best-of collection, Gold: Greatest Hits, on June 30. The two-album set will be pressed on heavyweight 180-gram gold-colored vinyl and will also include a card enabling MP3 download of the tracks.

Featuring such hits as “Waterloo,” “Dancing Queen,” “The Name of the Game” and “SOS,” Gold: Greatest Hits has sold over 30 million copies worldwide.

ABBA was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2010. The quartet of Agnetha Faltskog, Bjorn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad are reportedly reuniting to work on a project with music guru Simon Fuller, the man behind the Spice Girls, among others.  According to Metro, the project will be a “groundbreaking venture that will utilize the very latest in digital and virtual reality technology.”

Here’s the track list for the limited-edition reissue of Abba’s Gold: Greatest Hits:

Side One
“Dancing Queen”
”Knowing Me, Knowing You”
”Take A Chance On Me”
”Mamma Mia”
”Lay All Your Love On Me”

Side Two
”Super Trouper”
”I Have A Dream”
”The Winner Takes It All”
”Money, Money, Money”

Side Three
”Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)”

Side Four
”Does Your Mother Know”
”One Of Us”
”The Name Of The Game”
”Thank You For The Music”


The Chainsmokers and Ariana Grande playing Singapore Grand Prix

Rory KramerThe Chainsmokers and Ariana Grande are heading to Singapore to perform their first-ever shows there. The two acts will be performing at the Singapore Grand Prix in September.

The officially-titled Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix will take place at the Marina Bay Street Circuit from September 15 to 17. The Chainsmokers and Ariana will be the headlining entertainment on Saturday, September 16.

Other acts participating at the event include OneRepublic, Duran Duran and Seal. More music acts are expected to be announced in the coming months.

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Welcome to the Hotel Adele: Singer's concerts boost Australian hotel occupancy 

Alasdair McLellanIs your city suffering because tourism is down and hotel rooms are empty?  Here's the solution: invite Adele to perform there.

According to Australia's Financial Review, the sell-out concerts Adele did Down Under led to a huge boost in hotel occupancy in a number of Australian cities, including Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

In Brisbane, hotel occupancy rose by 12% because more than 60,000 fans flocked to the city to see Adele perform two shows there.  Her two stadium shows injected an estimated $40 million into the city's economy as well, according to the Financial Review

Adele's sold-out shows in Sydney and Melbourne in March also resulted in single-digit percentage boosts in hotel occupancy.

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Rock Hall Induction Ceremony returns to Cleveland for 2018 

Courtesy Rock & Roll Hall of FameThe Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is located in Cleveland, but the induction ceremony doesn't always take place there.  But it will next year.

This morning, the Hall announced that the 33rd annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held April 14, 2018 at Cleveland's historic Public Hall.  The last time it was held at that location was 2015.  A variety of induction-themed events will be held at the Hall and throughout the city in conjunction with the event.

This year's induction ceremony took place earlier this month in Brooklyn, NY -- you can watch it Saturday night on HBO starting at 8 p.m. ET/PT.  The honorees were Joan Baez, ELO, Journey, Nile Rodgers, Pearl Jam, Tupac Shakur, and Yes. 

The special guests at the ceremony included Lenny Kravitz, Alicia Keys, Snoop Dogg, Pharrell Williams, T.I., Rush's Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, Jackson Browne, Train's Pat Monahan, Dhani Harrison, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Indigo Girls, and others.

An exhibit dedicated to this year's honorees is now open at the Hall, and will run through the winter of 2018.

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Brad Paisley dropping visual album to accompany "Love and War"

Arista NashvilleBrad Paisley has revealed that he'll be releasing a "visual album" style video companion to his new album, Love and War, with concept videos for all of the album's 16 songs coming initially as an Apple Music exclusive on Friday, April 28.

Brad tells Variety he didn't come up with the idea to do a complete visual companion until he had finished the video for "Today."

"I saw the way that just blew up and was really connecting. So I went to the label and half-jokingly said, "I can do this with every song on this record. They’re all very visual,'” he says.  "And we went guerilla-style, everywhere we could do this."

Although his "visual album" is not intended to be the kind of coherent single story like Beyonce's Lemonade, there is emotional flow. "I hope that 'One Beer Can' cracks you up, and I hope to tug on the emotions with the one-two punch of 'Love and War,' with me and John Fogerty on the deck of an aircraft carrier, which fades into 'Today,' as the soldiers come home. I hope that there’s not a dry eye watching that," he explains.

He also shot videos anywhere and everywhere including a Sleep Number mattress store in a mall, and, yes, his parents' house.  "In “One Beer Can,” that’s my parents’ house. We cast 30 Belmont students [for a raucous high school party scene]. I never did that to my mother — I never threw that party — so it serves her right that finally at my age I’m trashing her house. With a donkey," he said.

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Report: Dr. Luke and Sony cutting ties

Jason LaVeris/FilmMagicSony Music and Lukasz "Dr. Luke" Gottwald reportedly are in the process of cutting ties, amid the ongoing legal battle between the producer and Kesha.

Variety cites court documents that reveal that Luke is out as CEO of Kemosabe Records, the label he founded which came under Sony's control in 2011.  And while the producer and label still have production deals in place, an unnamed source tells Variety the relationship is "winding down."

In 2014, Kesha accused Dr. Luke of being physically, emotionally and sexually abusive toward her during the course of their work together, suing and seeking to be released from her contract with Kemosabe.  Dr. Luke has denied all the allegations, and a series of court proceedings in New York and California have failed to free Kesha from her deal with Sony/Kemosabe, though appeals are pending.  Luke also filed a defamation suit against Kesha.

Neither Sony nor Luke have commented publicly on reports of a split.

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John Legend rips Donald Trump: "He’s one of the worst people I’ve ever encountered in public life"

ABC/Paula LoboDon't invite John Legend and Donald Trump to the same cocktail party.

John was one of the honorees Tuesday night at TIME magazine's TIME 100 party celebrating the magazine's list of the world's most influential people, and on the red carpet he paused to give reporters a piece of his mind on the subject of the president, reports Entertainment Weekly.

"I think he's a terrible president," John said. “He’s manifestly unqualified, not curious, not good at legislating or doing anything that his job requires.”

But that wasn't all.  “He doesn’t have any depth about any subject and he’s also using the office of the presidency as a way to make money for himself with his business, so he’s corrupt,” John said. “I can’t say anything nice about the guy. I think he’s one of the worst people I’ve ever encountered in public life.”

As for the least bad thing Trump has done in his first 100 days in office, John offered, “We haven’t gotten in a nuclear war…yet.”

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OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder on that one time Bono blew him off...for the Pope

ABC/Donna SvennevikIn addition to scoring hits with his own band, OneRepublic frontman Ryan Tedder has worked with many of the biggest names in the business, like Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Beyonce and more.  But one day, Ryan was working with Bono -- who he calls "the most famous" person he's met -- when they were interrupted by a phone call from someone even more impressive.

Ryan worked with U2 on their most recent album, and considers himself good friends with Bono.  He tells Forbes that one day, he and Bono were working on music when Bono's assistant interrupted and told him he had a call.

Ryan says Bono told the assistant, “No, we’re writing, we’re working on this song, can you tell the person to call me back?”  But the assistant knocked on the door again and pleaded with Bono to take the call.

"He’s like, 'For God’s sake, who is it?'” Ryan recalls. "She goes, 'Oh, it’s the Pope.' And he turns and looks at me and cocks an eyebrow, he’s got a mischievous grin on his face and he goes, 'I’m sorry, Ryan, duty calls. I’m gonna go save the world.'”

Despite being around all these legends, Ryan admits that the only time he lost his cool was when he met Annie Lennox and made a fool of himself with his non-stop babbling.

"I go over and basically fawn over her for 30 minutes. What I thought was five minutes was me talking non-stop for 30 minutes and just losing it," he tells Forbes.

"I was saying the dumbest stuff to her for 30 minutes. And the beauty of it is she didn’t remember, 'cause I ended up at...brunch with her last week....and she had no recollection she ever met me!"

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Zedd calls his "Stay" collaborator Alessia Cara "so brilliant" and "really skilled"

Interscope RecordsZedd has scored hits with songs featuring vocals by Ariana Grande, Selena Gomez, Hayley Williams and Foxes, but he says "Stay," his current collabo with Alessia Cara, was effortless because she's "so brilliant."

"She's just a really skilled singer," Zedd says of Alessia. "I've never had to work less to get a vocal that sounds so good!" 

"Obviously, in the time we live [in], you can pretty much make anyone sound good," he adds.  "But when you have something so brilliant to begin with, it's really easy to make it sound great."

Zedd says when he first wrote "Stay," he immediately thought Alessia would be perfect for the song, because her unique voice just seemed to reflect the feel of the piece.

"I think she has a really moody, breathy frequency in her voice that I really love," he tells ABC Radio. "The song generally, sonically, is very dark in certain's very haunting, and there's something about her voice that just fits the track so well."

"Stay" has just entered the top 10. It's each artists' third trip there: Zedd previously scored with "Break Free" and "Clarity," while Alessia's other top-10 hits are "Here" and "Scars to Your Beautiful."

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Nashville notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockTyler Farr's new single will be titled "I Should Go to Church Sometime."

Newcomer Kane Brown is engaged to Philadelphia singer/songwriter Katelyn Jae. He revealed the news to a hometown crowd in the City of Brotherly Love last week.

Country Music Hall of Famer Connie Smith will join her husband Marty Stuart for his 16th annual Late Night Jam during this year's CMA Music Festival. Rhiannon Giddens and many more are on the bill for the Wednesday, June 7 show at the historic Ryman Auditorium.

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Teach Your Children Well: Little Big Town leads the way, as country music honors music educators

ABC/Image Group LATonight at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium, Little Big Town honors music educators from all across the country, as they host the 2nd Annual CMA Music Teachers of Excellence dinner.

If you’ve ever wondered where the money goes from your ticket to CMA Music Festival, Karen Fairchild wants you to know, it’s your dollars they’ll be passing out tonight.

“Every year when the artists play at CMA Fest, they're playing for free, and then [the] CMA Foundation donates money to music education,” Karen says. 

“It's become such a big thing now,” she goes on, “that we literally are supporting complete music programs in some schools. Not just providing instruments, but taking care of the educators and on and on and on this list goes.”

This evening, thirty-one music teachers from all across the country will all get a financial gift to honor their accomplishments.

“They're gonna give teachers not just like a little financial gift, but also something for their classroom,” Karen says.

“It's really about celebrating those music teachers who often don't get much of anything…. They're the leftover budget in the school,” she adds. “They end up spending their own money on their classroom.”

Brett Eldredge hosted 2016’s inaugural ceremony. This year, Dustin Lynch, William Michael Morgan, Kristian Bush, Jerrod Niemann, Hunter Hayes, Scotty McCreery and more will all turn out to pay tribute to the educators as well.

Multiple landmarks across the Nashville skyline will also be lit in blue Wednesday night in honor of the teachers.

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Foes no more: Damon Albarn talks working with former rival Noel Gallagher on new Gorillaz album

Image courtesy GorillazIn the '90s, there was perhaps no rock feud more bitter than the one between Blur and Oasis. Damon Albarn and Noel Gallagher have since made up, and the two even collaborated on the song "We Got the Power," which appears on the upcoming Gorillaz album, Humanz.

"It was the ultimate self-congratulatory Britpop moment," Albarn tells Rolling Stone. "It was the victory lap, these geezers singing about all the power they had."

The rivalry was mostly generated by the press, which pitted the working class Oasis against the art school students in Blur. But things got personal when Gallagher was quoted in an interview as saying that he hopes Albarn and Blur bassist Alex James "catch AIDS and die," a remark for which he's since apologized.

"There was a point when [Oasis] were set against us," Albarn now says. "And he had the advantage. He was from the working-class band. He was playing up to that and using it very successfully. I found it difficult to counter."

On "We Got the Power," Albarn found he enjoyed working with his former foe.

"He's really musical. He's got a great tone to his voice," he says of Gallagher. "I love his guitar playing. And he's funny as s***. He's f****** brilliant company."

Humanz will be released April 28.

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Sevendust to play debut album in full on 20th anniversary mini-tour

Scott Legato/Getty ImagesSevendust will play a quick headlining tour this summer to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their 1997 self-titled debut album.

The five-show run kicks off June 21 in Baltimore and will conclude June 25 in Worcester, Massachusetts. Tickets will go on sale this Friday, April 28 via

During the tour, Sevendust will be playing their debut album, which features the singles "Black" and "Too Close to Hate," in its entirety. The band performed Sevendust in full last month during a special one-off show in their hometown of Atlanta.

In addition to playing the Sevendust dates, guitarist Clint Lowery will be touring in Seether's live lineup this spring and summer in support of the South African band's upcoming new album Poison the Parish. That disc is due May 12.

Sevendust's most recent album is 2015's Kill the Flaw, which boasts the Grammy-nominated single "Thank You."

Here are Sevendust's 20th anniversary tour dates:

6/21 -- Baltimore, MD, Rams Head Live!
6/22 -- Sayreville, NJ, Starland Ballroom
6/23 -- Philadelphia, PA, Electric Factory
6/24 -- Long Island, NY, The Space at Westbury Theater
6/25 -- Worcester, MA, The Palladium

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Khalid says his track "Saved" is about lost relationships, not his missing cat

ABC RadioKhalid wants his fans to know that his song, "Saved," isn't about his long-lost cat Lily.  

The 19-year-old singer admits that his tweet about the origins of the track was a joke that got out of hand, and tells ABC Radio the real story behind it. 

He explains, "It was actually just about my move from New York to El Paso. Just the fact that I lost a lot of relationships that meant a lot to me."

"But even though whatever I went through was just painful and heartwrenching, I just could not allow myself to delete their number," he adds. "I had to keep it saved for a sense of closure, eventually. At the end of the song I find out, 'You know what? I wanna call you to let you know that I'm over you.'"

Khalid's raw and unflinching honesty, heard throughout his debut album, American Teen -- which debuted at number nine on the Billboard 200 last month -- has helped earn him a legion of fans. He also knew before releasing the project that it would change his life forever. 

He says, "The day that the album came out, I really knew that it was gonna be a big difference for me because it was finally the day that I got to express all of me. Emotionally, physically, just every part of me."

"I put this body of work together," the singer explains. "I put all of me into it. I'm like, 'You know what? It's time to get this baby free.'" 

The young artist also trusted his gut instinct when it came to his ambitions.

He adds, "I knew that music was gonna be my career choice because I'm in love with music."  

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Procol Harum returns with new album, 'Novum'

Credit: Eagle RecordsFor the first time in 14 years, there’s a new Procol Harum album.

Novum, the veteran British progressive rock band’s first new studio album since 2003’s The Well’s on Fire, was released April 21. The group continues to be led by one of its founding members, singer/keyboardist/composer Gary Brooker, who’s been the distinctive voice of Procol Harum since they exploded on the scene in 1967 with the legendary single, “Whiter Shade of Pale.”

Novum is Procol Harum’s 13th album overall and helps mark the band’s 50th anniversary. Brooker tells ABC Radio that milestone was the inspiration to record new material: “So off we went. And the band, we've been playing live, this outfit as we stand today, for 10 years, and this was the first time we've been in the studio. So we suddenly got very excited about it.”

Most of the lyrics on the new album came courtesy of Pete Brown, best known for his work with Cream in the 1960s. The music was a collaborative process between Brooker and the other band members. He recalls, "I thought I would like to sit down with a couple of the people from the band…very, very capable creators. So I sat down with (keyboardist) Josh Phillips, and then we got (guitarist) Geoff Whitehorn involved as well, and we started to think up new ideas.”

Novum features 11 new tracks, one in particular that Brooker enjoys singing: the first single, “Sunday Morning.” He explains, “You can really get into that one. I mean, they're all good songs to put yourself into as a vocalist.”

Brooker proudly adds that he considers Novum “to be one of the finest Procol Harum albums ever.”

Here's the track list for Novum:

“I Told on You”
“Last Chance Motel"
“Image of the Beast”
“Don’t Get Caught”
“Sunday Morning”
“Can’t Say That”
“The Only One”

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