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When Taylor Swift was interrupted by Kanye West at the MTV VMA Awards last year, someone joked about how it was like kicking a kitten. Swift is extremely likeable, so why would anyone want to do something so hateful to her? And I feel a little bit like that today since her first single off her next album was leaked to the Internet without her blessing. It’s like kicking the kitten all over again. ●
- – Yes, generating even more publicity for one of the world’s wealthiest 20-year-olds by leaking her new single a few days early is just like kicking a kitten. Astute commentary, Alison.
If I go out with a girl, there is a possibility that she’s going to get up from the dinner table and go to the bathroom and use Twitter to tell everybody what she’s doing. The next thing you know, everybody’s got a play-by-play of what you’re having for dinner. That would make anybody uncomfortable. ●
- – Kenny Chesney on the difficulties of dating in the digital age.
Guess what !!???? I got a record deal with Broken Bow records!!!!!! ●
- – Kristy Lee Cook. How many chances is this girl going to get?
There are just people who don’t like puppies and complain about stuff anyway. There’s always going to be that two or three percent who just hate themselves, and you can’t win them over. ●
- – Jaron and the Long Road to Love thinks people who dislike “Pray for You” hate themselves.
Q: What song out right now do you wish you had written?
A: You’re going to stump me on that because every one of my vehicles has satellite radio in them — my motorcycle, my boat, my plane, my cars, my trucks, everything — and they’re all on Roadhouse, which is ’50s, ’60s, ’70s and ’80s country. I haven’t listened to modern radio for maybe five or six years, so I have no idea. I haven’t even listened to myself! ●
- – Here’s the problem with radio: Even Toby Keith won’t listen to stations that play Toby Keith.
“[The production crew's] room was next to mine. So I pulled down my pants from my room, and I was walking with my pants around my ankles. I walked [into their room], and I was going to ask them, ‘Hey does Toby sell hot pants because it’s so hot … I just wanted to get some shorts.'”
As Jaron entered the production room, his prank was well on its way to working. “Then, the production manager goes, ‘Hey Jaron, have you met Trace?’ I hadn’t at that point. So I turn around, and Trace was standing there. He gives me that smirk, like, ‘You’re an idiot.’ I was [thinking], ‘Uhh … yeah, I kind of am.’ That prank went back on me real fast. I pulled up my pants, and I was like, ‘Nice to meet you, sir …'” ●
- – Jaron and the Long Road to Love on an awkward introduction to tourmate Trace Adkins.
I find it oddly interesting that people made a jump from a visual aesthetic to think that’s musically what’s gonna happen. But I think that’s really our fault for the way that we explained it, to be honest. It has everything to do with the visual. We wanted another world on stage. We wanted something fun, a visual aesthetic to be inspired by. We chose that one. It has nothing to do with the music. I definitely put the brunt of that on our shoulders for anyone who didn’t understand that. ●
- – Jennifer Nettles clarifies: steampunk is the visual, not musical, theme of The Incredible Machine. Whew.
I was just singing songs for the movie. I think the original plan was they wanted the bona fide crew to re-sing our songs, and then when [Sony Music Nashville chair] Joe Galante heard it, he was like, ‘No, I want to release this as the single.’ I was like, ‘Excuse me please? What? What is going on?’ ●
- – Gwyneth Paltrow’s new country single wasn’t her doing.
Jerrod Niemann followed with a stiff and sometimes off-key set, drawing mostly from his first major-label release, “Judge Jerrod and the Hung Jury.” Niemann is better known as a songwriter and seems to be struggling between his fondness for traditional barroom country music and his current status as a new-country heartthrob. His stage banter, like much of his debut album, borders on offensive and sexist, rife with corny drinking references and juvenile humor, though the women in the audience didn’t seem to mind. ●
- – Jerrod Niemann gets panned by the San Francisco Chronicle. Fellow West Coast Country Music Festival performers Zac Brown, The Band Perry, and Ryan Bingham all fare better in Joshua Zucker’s write-up.
The group’s encore was a medley highlighting the band’s influences. From AC/DC, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Boston to 80s-era Michael Jackson, the audience clapped and danced along on its collective feet while the ever-grateful band thanked its fans. ●
- – Someone remind me again why Rascal Flatts is country?
“Y’all like real country?” Randy Houser asked Thursday at WE Fest in Detroit Lakes. “And when I say ‘real country,’ I don’t mean that pop crap.” [...] Regardless, it was an odd thing to say, and not just because he co-wrote Trace Adkins’ hilarious hit “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk.” Houser had just thanked Gloriana, the up-and-coming country act, which played before him and Gloriana is nothing if not pop country. ●
- – I’m okay with making compromises, but do wish Randy Houser would realize that he’s not leaving himself much room to rail against “that pop crap” when he records songs like “Whistlin’ Dixie.”
Worley said the song first aired on WYCD-FM, Detroit’s No. 1 station, during a promotional tour and the listener response was enormous. Several other stations added the song to their rotations. But then suddenly it disappeared from the airwaves, prompting Worley to surmise that stations are boycotting his song. [...] Worley said he has been forced to promote the song outside of traditional radio. Last Monday, Worley mentioned the song on Fox News’ “Great American Panel,” hosted by Sean Hannity. ●
- – I hate to be the bearer of bad news here, Darryl Worley, but just because the song isn’t getting played doesn’t mean you’re important enough to be boycotted. (Didn’t I just have this discussion with the Bellamy Brothers?) In fact, “Keep the Change” has already done about as well as half the singles you’ve released in the past five years… so, if anything, its lackluster performance is just a continuation of a long career cooling trend.
I never want people to feel worse about themselves or their life after they listen to a Josh Turner record. I want them to listen to my record and say, “You know what, life isn’t so bad, after all. And I just need to look on the bright side of things, and this song really makes me feel good, and you know, I need to dance. I need to quit worrying about all this other stuff and just concentrate on the good things in life.” ●
- – Josh Turner explains why he’s on a mission to record insubstantial fluff like “All Over Me.”
I love Rick Rubin for showering down his love, his creative genius, and his budgets. They hit a lick with taking John to the edge and they rescued him from Branson, and they rescued him from an undignified way for such a great American musical pioneer to go out. Rick put him up on a wonderful place. I love every bit of that part. The other side of that is that I think you can take every American Recording and boil them down to get one great record.
If I want to hear Johnny Cash, I think about music from about 1958 to 1968, early ‘69. If you want to hear Johnny Cash, go there because that’s when it was at its very finest. ●
- – Marty Stuart on Cash’s American Recordings.
Finally, he looked at me and said, “How would you approach the book if you were to write it?” I told him I would approach it as any journalist would, that is, I would talk to people who knew him, worked with him, were married to him, and that I would explore the circumstances of Don Rich’s death.
That is when I felt his energy shift. There was a long silence. Then he couldn’t look me in the eye anymore and began shifting his gaze, all the while wearing tinted shades a la Elvis and Ringo. He hemmed and hawed and then said, “Well, Eileen, it’s like this. You’re real pretty and you’re real smart, but I just don’t trust publishers.” ●
- – Journalist/author Eileen Sisk on meeting with Buck Owens about writing his official biography, which became an unauthorized biography when Buck discontinued his cooperation. The book apparently paints a pretty unfavorable portrait of Owens’ business practices and womanizing.
But it’s a different kind of hijinks on the road that gets much of Sisk’s attention: the catting around by Holly, Rich and especially Owens. She says Buck bedded at least a thousand women.
“He had behaved like a feral tomcat prowling for pussycats in heat,” Sisk writes of Owens, one of the few PG-13 descriptions in an otherwise prurient accounting of his exploits — or “sextracurricular” activities, as she inelegantly puts it. Readers will learn far more about Buck’s life between the sheets than they probably ever wanted to know, and in crude detail. If he was even half the Lothario Sisk makes him out to be, it’s amazing he found the time to get anything else done. ●
- – Not surprisingly, the Bakersfield Californian paper thinks Sisk’s book is “nothing but a hatchet job”… though the fact that they ran a “Reaction from the Crystal Palace” next to a review that already contests the book’s premise does have me questioning their impartiality a bit. Anyway, now I want to read this thing.
Well, I’m not going to lie, it does get tough and it does get frustrating sometimes because that’s more contemporary, more pop-country and what I prefer to do is more traditional country. But then again, always remember, even if I never recorded another song I could work forever off that one song so it’s good and bad, but sometimes it does feel like an albatross. ●
- – Lee Ann Womack on “I Hope You Dance.”