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Archive for the ‘Tours & Concerts’ Category

Kristian Bush Makes Solo Grand Ole Opry Debut

kristian bush

Kristian Bush made his solo debut at the Grand Ole Opry on Friday night (7/18). The country singer, also known as one-half of Platinum-selling duo Sugarland, stepped up to the microphone and took the opportunity to introduce his voice and new material to the live audience.

“I feel so grateful, to the Opry for inviting me, to the audience who heard me use my voice, and to my brother for joining me in both writing this song and performing it on such a hallowed stage. It was an amazing experience, like a roller coaster I want to get back on,” said Bush.

Bush performed his new single “Trailer Hitch,” an infectious song that carries the underlying message of enjoying the gift of giving back over the desire for material things. Already available for pre-order on iTunes, “Trailer Hitch” is set to hit Country radio nationwide on July 28. He also treated the packed crowd to the tune “Southern Gravity,” his own love song to the South. Both songs will be featured on Bush’s upcoming debut solo album for which he is collaborating with longtime producer Byron Gallimore to be released on Streamsound Records.

Bush has been leaving his mark on music for more than two decades. The singer, songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist started his career with folk rock duo Billy Pilgrim in the early ’90s, releasing a much-lauded pair of albums for Atlantic Records (self-titled debut and BLOOM). In 2004, he exploded onto the country music scene with Sugarland, surpassing sales of over 22 million albums worldwide, achieving five No. 1 singles and winning numerous awards, including Grammys, AMAs, ACMs, CMT Music Awards and CMAs. To date, Bush garnered six BMI Awards for his songwriting, and in 2011 founded the music publishing company and songwriting collective Songs of the Architect. Recent producing/songwriting collaborations include Mike Elizondo, Rita Wilson, Dia Frampton, Ellis Paul, Matt Nathanson, the dB’s, Martin Johnson of Boys Like Girls, Pretty Little Liars star Lucy Hale, and up-and-comers including Larkin Poe, Natalie Stovall, Canaan Smith, Jaida Dreyer, Alana Springsteen, and The Voice contestant Savannah Berry.

Casting Crowns and For King & Country Fans Brave the Cold Rain for Incredible Show

Casting Crowns

Casting Crowns took their “Thrive Tour” through Kettering, Oh. with a stop at the Fraze Pavilion on Friday, July 18th.  Although rain dampened the evening fans started lining up for their seats hours before the show was set to start.

I know we normally stick strictly to country music here on CMTT but with so many lines being lifted through genre crossing these days I felt it was my duty to share with you the amazingness of Casting Crowns.

The band has been making Christian music together for 10 years. The group originally came together at a Daytona Beach, Fla., church where lead singer, Mark Hall, was a youth pastor. The group later moved to Eagle’s Landing First Baptist Church in the Atlanta suburb of McDonough, Ga., and the band grew.  Since being discovered through recordings they made to share in church the award winning music stars, Mark and the members of Casting Crowns have worked to maintain their ministry at Eagle’s Landing.   Mark is the Student Pastor at the church and the band arranges tours so they will be at church on Sundays.

One of the things that first drew me to country music was it’s realness. Real people writing real music about life and performing it live.   This is exactly what Casting Crowns music is.  It’s real, it’s glorifying and it raises it’s hands to our creator.

Friday’s show was certainly a wet one.  The rain started hours before the show started and didn’t stop, but it didn’t keep the fans away.  Thousands  showed up for the outside concert in their ponchos and rain coats and you just knew from the energy in the air it was going to be an incredible show.

king and country

for King and Country, the Dove Awards 2013 New Artist of the Year,  opened the night with a 25 minute set that didn’t disappoint.  My 7 and 8 year old sat straight up in their seats when they heard the beating of the drums start.    The Australian rockers brought high-energy, hard-driving rhythms and even strapped on their drums and joined the crowd in the rain!  They were jumping off the stage, singing at the end of rows and running through the venue all while playing and not missing a beat in the pouring down rain.   Keep an eye out for their sophomore album Run Wild. Live Free. Love Strong out everywhere September 16.

Casting Crowns took the stage after a very quick set change and welcomed the wet crowd with a set list that included their greatest hits as well as brand new music from their Thrive album.  My favorite of the evening was the ever appropriate “Praise You in This Storm.”  The band also shared several acoustic versions of their songs that were real crowd pleasers.

There are very few concerts that you can take your children to and see fans of literally all ages come together and relate to the music and melodies.  The atmosphere of the show was uplifting, energetic and most of all fun!  With screens on the stage that had the lyrics to each of the songs it allowed everyone to sing along and really connect with every song that was performed.

If country music is your thing….and I think it is since you are reading Country Music Tattle Tale….then I urge you to branch out just a little bit and check out Casting Crowns.  There is a fiddle player….and these days not even all of our main stream country music has one of those! I promise there is a lot of country in this Christian band.

You can find out more about Casting Crowns online at: or follow them on Twitter @castingcrowns.

for King & Country is online at: and on Twitter @4kingandcountry


Brad Paisley Makes Good on Grand Ole Opry Offer to Sarah Darling

Photo By: Chris Hollo for Grand Ole Opry

Photo By: Chris Hollo for Grand Ole Opry

Last week (July 18) on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, country superstar and Opry member Brad Paisley and former Rising Star contestant Sarah Darling performed Paisley’s hit “Whiskey Lullaby.” This was the fulfillment of the invitation he extended to Darling last week during the live broadcast of ABC’s new hit singing competition Rising Star after she was eliminated from the show by just a fraction of a percentage in the votes.

Paisley introduced Darling before the performance, saying “Welcome home – back to the place you belong, Nashville, Tenn.”
Darling responded, “There’s no place like home.”

Tune in for Rising Star on ABC, Sunday evenings through August 24, 9:00pm ET.

Jason Aldean Fires Up For Sold Out Stadium Shows

Jason Aldean

Two time ACM “Male Vocalist Of The Year” Jason Aldean is gearing up for his first set of stadium dates this weekend with back to back sold out shows at Progressive Field (Cleveland, OH on 7/18) and Great American Ball Park (Cincinnati, OH on 7/19). These are the first of five MLB stadiums for Aldean that will also see him play Nationals Park (Washington, DC on 7/25); PNC Park (Pittsburgh, PA on 7/26) and Citizens Bank Park (Philadelphia, PA on 8/1) over the next two weeks.

“This stadium run is something I’ve been looking forward to all year,” said Aldean. “I dreamed of playing MLB stadiums since I was six in Little League and watch games at these stadiums every season.  It’s wild to stand on the mound during load in and watch an empty park totally come alive with our production and crazy, loud fans.  These next two weeks will definitely be something I look back on with unbelievable pride and gratitude.”

The monumental shows are part of Aldean’s headlining 2014 BURN IT DOWN TOUR and will continue through the fall hitting the country’s biggest amphitheaters and arenas, with additional upcoming dates including two sold out nights at the iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Special guest Miranda Lambert will join Aldean and his 2014 BURN IT DOWN tourmates Florida Georgia Line and Tyler Farr for stadium shows in Cleveland, OH; Cincinnati, OH and Pittsburgh, PA.  For a full list of upcoming tour dates, visit


Krystal Keith Makes Her Grand Ole Opry Debut

Backstage at her debut performance at The Grand Ole Opry,

Backstage at her debut performance at The Grand Ole Opry.

On Wednesday, July 9, country music singer-songwriter Krystal Keith took another stride forward with her debut performance at the venerable Grand Ole Opry.

“I have never been nervous on a stage in my life…until that night at The Grand Ole Opry,” Krystal recalls. “There is something so special and sacred about that stage and being in the circle knowing all of my musical heroes have performed there so many times before me. I was so humbled and honored to have joined that long line of legends who’ve shared that moment.”

The artist also shared her moment with her dad, Toby Keith, on the day after his birthday adding another special element to the night. She notes, “his love of the good ole time country music is one of the greatest influences for both my dad and I and being asked to perform just after his birthday didn’t feel like a coincidence. It felt like a sign that he is watching over me smiling and guiding me through this journey.”

This performance follows many recent firsts for Krystal. This summer she embarked on her first major tour, opening for her dad on his Shut Up And Hold On Tour Presented by Ford F-Series. She is on the road in support of the release her debut album, Whiskey & Lace. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel raved “when Krystal lends her deep, well-polished voice… she reveals herself as an exciting new artist;” and the Cleveland Plain Dealer praised, “Keith has matured into a solid singer, with a wide range. And, like her dad, she’s evolved into a songwriter capable of not just tugging at heartstrings, but playing them like a puppet master. …From top to bottom, [Whiskey & Lace] is filled with good, catchy country songs.”

At recent tour stops in the Washington DC (June 28) and Cleveland (June 29) areas, Krystal brought her show out to the fans before the venue gates opened and performed with her band in the back of a pickup truck for a crowd full of tailgaters in the parking lot. Follow Krystal on her Instagram and Facebook pages for notices about more impromptu ‘get your tailgate on’ pre-shows at upcoming tour stops, dates include:

July 25 Holmdel, NJ PNC Bank Center
July 26 Hartford, CT XFINITY Theatre
July 27 Bethel, NY Bethel Woods Center
Aug. 08 Cincinnati, OH Riverbend Music Center
Aug. 09 Pittsburgh, PA First Niagara Pavilion
Sept. 13 Indianapolis, IN Klipsch Music Center
Sept. 27 Philadelphia, PA Susquehanna Bank Center

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