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Kenny Chesney Closes BIG REVIVAL 2015 with Gillette Record

Credit: Jill Trunnell

Credit: Jill Trunnell

Kenny Chesney’s decade-long love affair with Gillette Stadium – the place where his rabid No Shoes Nation was named – hit a new high this weekend. Having set and broken his own record myriad times, the man The Dallas Morning News called “two parts Mick Jagger, one part Bruce Springsteen and one part Billy Graham” hit another new number tonight (Saturday, Aug. 29).

With 60,082 fans Friday and 60,124 fans Saturday, Kenny Chesney played to 120,206 fans this weekend. Without final tallies, it was already determined that in nine trips to Foxborough, Chesney played to over three-quarters of a million fans. With a tent show revivalist’s fervor, the man The Wall Street Journal called “The King of the Road” never slowed over 2 1/2 hours each night – prompting The Boston Globe headline: “Crowd belongs to Chesney at Gillette.”

“Some nights you just know you’re going new places up there,” Chesney said after the show. “I could hear the fans long before the swing was above the platform – and flying over all those heads, seeing the faces, I could tell Boston had been waiting for these shows almost as much me and the band had! The No Shoes Nation are some of the fiercest, most passionate music lovers – and there is nothing like the way they come at these songs.”

Wearing a Grace Potter & the Nocturnals t-shirt the first night as the crowd almost drowned him out on “American Kids,” Chesney embodied the euphoria of truly being alive and in the moment. He brought Matthew Ramsey and Brad Tursi from stadium opener Old Dominion out for “Save It For A Rainy Day,” which they co-wrote; then introduced David Lee Murphy as “the original Hillbilly Rock Star” for “Dust On The Bottle” and “Party Crowd.”

“And just when you think it can’t get any better, the last night of the tour hit,” Chesney continued. “The audience was even louder, live-er and sang every single word back to us! You can’t begin to imagine something like that, and knowing we’re putting the tents up for another year, we’ll hear their cheers until it’s time to start it up again for next year.”

Performing “She Came From Boston” for a second straight night, Chesney then had songwriter/vocalist Gretchen Rhodes join him to share the highly emotional “Happy On The Hey Now,” written as a memorial for one of the original pack of island girls he befriended long before superstardom hit. Tourmate Cole Swindell appeared in a t-shirt from Chesney’s alma mater East Tennessee State University and Robert and John Kraft brought the Patriots’ four Super Bowl trophies onstage during an especially poignant “Boys of Fall.”

“We moved the stage all the way back,” Chesney said of the landmark nights. “The only way we’re gonna get more people in is to add another night, and that would be crazy. But man, when you hear those folks singing back to you… see all those arms sweeping from side to side… We could be up there all night! Just the way that energy hits you, there’s nothing like it.”

Bringing co-headliner Jason Aldean out for the encore, Chesney wore baggy No Shoes Nation basketball shorts and no shoes. Having set or broken records in Minneapolis’ Target Stadium, Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field, Kansas City’s Arrowhead Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ’s Met Life Stadium, Pittsburgh’s Heinz Field, Green Bay’s Lambeau Field, as well as putting 55,000 in the Rose Bowl, he brought all that collected energy to his final concerts of the Big Revival 2015 – showing the world why he is the only country artist on Billboard’s Top 10 Touring Acts of the Last 25 Years.

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Carrie Underwood to Guest Judge the Season Finale of “Project Runway”

carrie underwood

Not only will seven-time GRAMMY® winner Carrie Underwood be stepping to center stage in the fashion world during New York’s Fashion Week at the recently announced Calia by Carrie Underwood show to present her fall collection, she will also appear on Lifetime’s Emmy-nominated Project Runway. Carrie will join Nina Garcia and Zac Posen as a guest judge on the season finale show that tapes Friday, September 11 with Emmy Award winners Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn. The finale episode will air Thursday, November 5 at 9pm ET/PT on Lifetime.

Carrie recently announced her fifth studio album, Storyteller, will be in stores on October 23. The album’s first single, “Smoke Break,” made history at country radio this week by earning the highest one-week add total in the history of trade publication Country Aircheck, with 145 Mediabase adds and 159 total Billboard and Country Aircheck reporting stations on board for the song’s official airplay impact date.

The video for “Smoke Break” premiered this week as well and is view able online HERE. Now available for purchase at http://smarturl.it/cuvideosb, the video was directed by Randee St. Nicholas, who also shot Underwood’s award-winning video for “Blown Away.”

The digital single for “Smoke Break” is available for sale at http://smarturl.it/cusmokebreak, and fans can pre-order a physical copy of Storyteller at Amazon.com here:  http://smarturl.it/amzstoryteller.

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Maddie & Tae Say They Have Learned A Lot Touring With Dierks Bentley

Photo Credit: Kevin White

Photo Credit: Kevin White

Maddie & Tae hit the ground running this year with a No. 1 single debut and ACM and CMT nominations, and they don’t plan on slowing down any time soon!

The successful duo caught up with Glamour to talk about everything from their own personal love lives and tour, to growing up and changing.

Maddie & Tae toured this year with fellow country pal Dierks Bentley, which they said exceeded all their expectations.

“We have Dierks to thank for that. He’s just such an amazing, humble person, and the way he interacts with his fans, family, is really something special,” explained Tae. We have a month left [on tour], so whenever we finish we’re going to be so sad, but we’ve learned a lot. We’ll take everything we’ve learned towards our Start Here tour in the fall.”

When it comes to love, both girls have boyfriends. Tae is dating country singer Jackie Lee. The love story started when he opened up for the girls.

“I’m never one to introduce myself to someone randomly, but I walk in and met him at the end of the stage and was like, “Hi, my name’s Tae.” He said, “Hi, I’m Jackie,” and that was it. After the show, he just so happened to be staying at the same hotel, and we stayed up in the lobby till 4 A.M. just talking. The rest is history!”

Meanwhile, Maddie meant her significant other back in high school.

“We met in high school. We were together my sophomore year, and then broke up for a year and did not talk to each other. It was so hard when we broke up because we were both still into each other but had to pretend like we weren’t,” she explained. “Then our senior year, [we] started to talk again. He was my person. He was a completely different guy, so grown up and knew what he wanted to do [in life]. I was like, “This is the person I want to invest time in!” I could not ask for a more perfect person to do life with.”

The foursome get together as much as they can.

“It’s good to have people that are really grounded like that in your life,” said Maddie.

Check out their full interview at Glamour.com!

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Denny Strickland Releases Acoustic Video for “Run”

Credit : Ryan Taylor

Credit : Ryan Taylor

Denny Strickland has releases an acoustic video of the George Strait classic, “Run”. The video is part of THE DIVE SESSIONS: three classic Country covers that Denny filmed with the guidance of producer/director Brian Harstine (Dolly Parton, Ke$ha) at a popular Nashville “dive bar” called Springwater. Subdued lighting and ambient daylight give the clip an intimate, “after-hours” feel, while smoothly shifting camera angles follow the flow of the ballad effectively.

Harstine notes,

“Even though Denny’s hits have been up-tempos in a Contemporary Country vein, he wanted to pay tribute to some of the genre’s legends. George had a big influence on Denny’s career, and I think this song was a perfect choice for him.”

This hot up-and-comer is currently in the studio recording songs for his upcoming CD, while his fast-rising single, “How Far You Wanna Go,” is riding the MusicRow CountryBreakout™ Chart at #49 this week.  The track follows his recentMusicRow Top 40hit, “Swerve On.”  Strickland is enjoying his first taste of international success with a European-only release of “I’d Love To Lay You Down.”  The track, a previous hit for Conway Twitty, now holds the #2 spot on the Hotdisc Chart.

Denny will open for The Kentucky Headhunters tonight at the Giles County Fair in Pulaski, TN.  In between sessions and live shows, the Arkansas native is visiting Country radio stations to promote his current single.

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