Artist of the Week: Elton John

Sir Elton John - Bridgestone Arena - Nashville, TN - April 5, 2013 Photo © Christine A Ellis
Sir Elton John – Bridgestone Arena – Nashville, TN – April 5, 2013 Photo © Christine A Ellis

This week I want to share with you my favorite Elton John songs. I’ve been listening to Elton John since I was a kid, so he’s been a part of my musical catalog virtually my whole life.

You can learn more about Sir Elton John through his official web site:

Here are my favorite tunes:

Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds –

Sad Songs (Say So Much) –

I’m Still Standing –

Philadelphia Freedom –

Don’t Go Breaking My Heart –

I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues –

Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me –

Crocodile Rock –

Your Song –

For the whole list, check out this Elton John playlist on Rhapsody.

Be sure to explore Sir Elton’s full catalog on your favorite music service. His songs have been on the radio, in movies and on television. So many hits and so much great music.

I have had the pleasure to see him live this year on my birthday. One of the best concerts I have been to in my lifetime.


Link: Lynyrd Skynyrd / Laughlin Entertainer (9/17/2013)

This article was published on 9/17/2013. [One note: when the band is listed at the bottom, Robert Kearns was listed as the bass player, he is not in the current lineup. Johnny Colt is the current bass player of Lynyrd Skynyrd.]

Coastal Virginia Town Readies “Red Carpet” For 8th Annual Smithfield Music’s Aiken & Friends Fest Performers

Source: So Much Moore Media

Norfolk, VA (September 23, 2013) – The coastal Virginia town of Smithfield is readying its “red carpet” for the entertainers slated to perform during its 8th Annual Smithfield Music’s Aiken & Friends Fest. The event, which runs October 4 & 5, offers music and educational workshops that benefit youth music education in Isle of Wight County, Virginia.

“It’s certainly not a ‘red carpet’ type of event,” laughs Fest founder and noted singer/songwriter Mike Aiken.  “But this year’s entertainers are certainly celebrities in their own right, and we want to make them feel welcome.”

Mike AikenEver humble, Mike Aiken would never toot his own horn, but the Northwind Records’ artist is a Virginia-based singing and songwriting fixture who is cherished for his signature blend of Americana, Country and Roots music.  A performer loved by audiences, Mike Aiken is a teller of tales whose music makes you feel like you instantly know him.  With five Top 30 singles over the past four years in the U.S. and Europe, Aiken is a compelling performer.  His depth as a songwriter is a result of his wandering, adventurous lifestyle. His current (and sixth studio CD), CAPTAINS AND COWBOYS, is now in stores.

buzz casonBuzz Cason’s six-decade career has been spent living the Rock & Roll dream.  Cason formed Nashville’s first R & R band, THE CASUALS, in the mid-1950s, enjoyed a solo hit with “Look For A Star” under the name Garry Miles and produced Buddy Holly’s former band, The Crickets.  As a songwriter, Buzz has garnered cuts by The Beatles, Pearl Jam, U2, Mel Tillis, T.G. Sheppard and many more.  His best-known composition is “Everlasting Love,” which he co-wrote with Mac Gayden.  The tune has enjoyed chart success in every decade since its release by The Righteous Brothers.  An engaging entertainer, Buzz has performed before audiences both stateside and abroad.

austinTexas native Austin Cunningham made a name for himself as a songwriter early in his career with cuts by Hank Williams, Jr., Martina McBride, Dolly Parton, Wynonna, Del McCoury and others.  His songs have been featured in film soundtracks for Ashley Judd’s Where The Heart Is and the Richard Gere/Winona Ryder film,Autumn In New York.  Cunningham has performed at the Sundance Film Festival for theBluebird Café On The Road series, and has been awarded the coveted Johnny Mercer Award for“Emerging American Songwriters.”  Austin’s strong voice and accomplished pickin’ continue to captivate audiences.


dannyLegendary guitarist, songwriter and recording artist Danny Flowers is best known for his songsTulsa Time (Don Williams and Eric Clapton),“Back In My Younger Days” (Don Williams),“Gulf Coast Highway” for Emmylou HarrisWillie Nelson, and Nanci Griffith (co-written with Griffith and James Hooker) and “Before Believing” from Harris’ PIECES OF THE SKY disc.  Flowers has also enjoyed a solo recording career that includes the 2007 album, TOOLS FOR THE SOUL.  A passionate and sought-after session musician, his licks can be heard on tracks by Williams, Griffith, Vince GillMarshall Chapman and Dobie Gray.

mojoMojo Collins is a Folk/Blues icon.  A revered performer known for captivating his fans, he has shared the stage with Fleetwood Mac, Janis Joplin, Big Brother & the Holding Company, Steve Miller, Santana, The Grateful Dead, Ike and Tina Turner, Muddy Waters, Leon Redbone, Sly and the Family Stone, Blue Cheer, The Spinners, Maurice Williams and the Zodiacs, Keith Shealy, and the incomparable Stevie Ray Vaughan.  Over the last 20 years, his music has received critical acclaim with airplay in the U.S. and nine other countries.  He is a recipient of several prestigious awards, including the North Carolina Arts Council’s Fellowship in Music.

The Fest kicks off on Friday, October 4 at 7:30 p.m. with a Songwriters in the Round Concert (featuring Aiken, Cason, Cunningham) at theSmithfield Little Theater (210 N. Church Street).  On Saturday, October 5, educational workshops and live performances run from noon until 9 p.m. at Windsor Castle Park (301 Jericho Road, Smithfield).  Offerings include a Songwriters’ workshop (Aiken, Cunningham), Guitar Seminar (Flowers) and Indie Music Promotion (Amy Aiken).

The live music line-up also features: LEA,The Hungry Monks and three local songwriters (Roy Moats, Scott Slay and Jacob Vanko) who earned their stage slots via Fest open-mic nights held throughout September.


Weekend Pass $35 – all events, concerts, workshops

Songwriters in the Round (Friday only) $25

Field Pass (Saturday only) $15 advance, $20 day of

Military Field Pass (Saturday only) $10 advance, $15 day of with military ID (active and dependent)

For more information on the Fest go to

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Source: Webster PR
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The world premiere of the video for “You Can’t Make Old Friends” – the new duet by Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton – was broadcast on ABC’s Good Morning America on Monday, September 16th.KennyRogers_DollyParton_medRogers and Parton shot the clip, directed by Trey Fanjoy and produced by Trent Hardville, together earlier this year in Nashville, Tennessee.  The song, written by Ryan Hanna King, Caitlyn Smith and Don Schlitz, is the title track from Rogers’ highly anticipated new album, You Can’t Make Old Friends, which will be released by Warner Bros. Records on October 8th..It was thirty years ago almost to the day when Rogers and Parton released the multiple-chart No. 1 hit, “Islands In The Stream,” which went on to become an instant classic and one of the most successful singles by a duo in history.

“I can’t think of a more perfect song for the two of us to sing together,” Rogers said of “You Can’t Make Old Friends.”  “Out of everyone in the business, Dolly is my best friend, so naturally it has special meaning for the both of us. It was so good to be back in the studio with her.  I’m thrilled to have our relationship documented this way.”

Parton added, “There is just something about our chemistry with each other – our friendship – that people really sense what we really feel.  To do a song that fits so many people, and certainly us, was an honor.  It’s been a wonderful journey, and I’m so glad I’ve been able to walk this road with Kenny.”

The duet “You Can’t Make Old Friends” is available now on iTunes and is being offered as a instant download for those who pre-order the You Can’t Make Old Friends album on iTunes here:  The video will be available for purchase this week at digital retailers.

You Can’t Make Old Friends is Rogers’ first country album since the release of Water & Bridges in 2006.  The album showcases a certain familiarity that can be expected from Rogers, along with fresh twists of creativity that see the versatile Grammy Award-winner stretching his artistry into new musical territory.  In addition to the great story songs and love songs Rogers has become well known for, flavors of rock and roll, soul, gospel, southern rock, zydeco, and sounds of the Southwest are embraced in this bold recording.

Rogers will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame this fall.  His extraordinary 2013 has included a main-stage performance at Glastonbury Festival to a colossal audience on the grounds and around the UK as it was televised on BBC as well as Through The Years World Tour stops in Morocco, England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland, Switzerland, Canada and the U.S.  In addition, a novel Rogers co-wrote with Mike Blakely, What Are The Chances, was released September 3rd and Rogers’ New York Times Best Selling autobiography, Luck Or Something Like It, will be released in paperback on September 27th.  This fall and winter, Rogers’ tour will roll on with additional U.S. and Canadian dates, including the Christmas & Hits Through The Years Tour, his annual holiday performances, in late November and December.

A trailblazing recording artist, vocalist, and entertainer, Rogers has sold more than 120 million records worldwide and recorded more than 65 albums during his illustrious 56 years in show business. Rogers has charted a record within each of the last seven decades and scored a hit single in the past six. He was the first country artist to consistently sell out arenas and quickly became a pop superstar as well – his 28 Billboard Adult Contemporary Top 10’s is fourth-best all time among men, trailing only Elton John, Neil Diamond, and Elvis Presley.  Rogers has recorded 12 No. 1 albums and 24 No. 1 hits – “The Gambler,” “Lady,” “Islands In The Stream (with Dolly Parton),” and “Lucille,” among them. His Greatest Hits album has sold over 24 million copies worldwide to date.  He is the RIAA’s 8th best-selling male artist of all time with one Diamond album, 19 Platinum albums and 31 Gold albums.

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Kenny Rogers – You Can’t Make Old Friends – Track Listing
1.    You Can’t Make Old Friends (Duet With Dolly Parton)
2.    All I Need Is One
3.    You Had To Be There
4.    ’Merica
5.    Turn This World Around
6.    Dreams Of The San Joaquin
7.    Don’t Leave Me In The Night Time (Featuring Buckwheat Zydeco)
8.    Look At You
9.    Neon Horses
10.  When You Love Someone
11.  It’s Gonna Be Easy Now


Source: Webster PR



Nashville, Tenn. (September 16, 2013) – With the SOLD OUT tribute concert already hosting top names in all genres of music, Nancy Jones is excited to announce the addition of George Strait, Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert, Eric Church, Reba McEntire, and Alabama to the all-star lineup.

“I am thrilled and honored that so many of George’s friends are coming to what would have been his last concert, but is not a fitting tribute,” says Nancy Jones.  “George loved these artists and before passing had actually wrote letters to almost all of them.”

The newly added list of performers will join previously announced artists Alan Jackson, Dierks Bentley, Travis Tritt, Tanya Tucker, Josh Turner, The Oak Ridge Boys, Charlie Daniels, Jamey Johnson, Montgomery Gentry, Sam Moore, and others.  All previously announced artists are currently being reconfirmed.

George Jones, often referred to as the “the greatest living country singer” was on his farewell tour titled “The Grand Tour,” when he passed away. The icon’s hits, “I Don’t Need Your Rockin’ Chair”, “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes”, “White Lightning” and “He Stopped Loving Her Today” will surely become standards for honky-tonk cover bands for years to come.

About George Jones
George Jones was the #2 best-charting country artist of all time, with a staggering list of hit singles since the ‘50s.  The Beaumont, Texas native also has 143 Top 40 hits to his name, has received two Grammy Awards, was a 2008 Kennedy Center Honor recipient, is a Country Music Hall of Fame member, was presented with a GRAMMY® Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012 and holds a National Medal of Arts medallion.

For more information on George Jones, please visit


Source: Webster PR

Exclusive Pre-Order Bundle Now Available

Nashville, Tenn. (September 13, 2013) – Multi-Platinum and seven-time GRAMMY winning icon Randy Travis is set to release his 21st studio album a day earlier than previously announced, on September 30th on Warner Bros. Records. The album, titled Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am, is available for pre-order today on

Travis and his music has been a major influence to other country artists throughout his celebrated career thus far. In his new album, Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am, Travis looks back at some of the songs and artists that were instrumental in crafting his musical career, including Merle Haggard, George Jones, Lefty Frizzell, among others.  “When I think of my musical heroes of yesteryear, or the younger stars of this year, I am reminded that it is true we learn from the ones ahead of us, and teach the ones that follow. They are the reason I chose to make this album,” says Randy Travis.

Fans of Randy Travis can pre-order his Influence Vol. 1: The Man I AmCollector’s Package. The package, which is available in Travis’ web store with free shipping, includes his forthcoming album on CD and digital download as well as a collectible print and t-shirt inspired by the album. Additionally, each song on the album is available for 30 second preview on his pre-sale page, found at

Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am
Collector’s Package
·         Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am CD + Digital Album
·         “Tonight I’m Playin’ Possum (Duet with Joe Nichols)” Instant Download
·         Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am Print
·         Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am T-Shirt

Influence Vol. 1: The Man I Am Track List

  1. Someday We’ll Look Back
  2. Big Butter And Egg Man
  3. What Have You Got Planned Tonight Diana
  4. Ever Changing Woman
  5. Pennies From Heaven
  6. Thanks A Lot
  7. Trouble In Mind
  8. My Mary
  9. Saginaw Michigan
  10. I’m Always On A Mountain When I Fall
  11. You Asked Me To
  12. Why Baby Why
  13. Tonight I’m Playin’ Possum (Duet with Joe Nichols)

For more information, please visit / Follow:@randytravis


Source: So Much Moore Media


Nashville, TN (September 16, 2013) — APA Nashville has signed acclaimed singer/songwriter Mallary Hope to its roster, it was announced today by Steve Hauser, the company’s Senior Vice President.   Hope’s duet “I Will Love You Still,”with superstar Darius Rucker, is a track on Rucker’s current Top 10 BILLBOARD Country album “True Believers”.  Hope is managed by McGhee Entertainment.

Signed to SONY/ATV Music Publishing, Hope is the powerhouse pen behind songs like “Georgia Peaches” (Lauren Alaina) and “King Of Apology” (Jana Kramer) and she has also enjoyed cuts by Faith Hill, Danny Gokey, Katie Armiger and others.


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Personal note: I saw The Oak Ridge Boys Christmas show a couple of years ago and it’s a must see. So much fun for all ages. Here’s a link to my personal photos from the show I attended.

Source: Webster PR


Legendary award-winning, hit-making group celebrate 24th Anniversary of Christmas Tour


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (September 16, 2013)– Grammy Award-winning music legends The Oak Ridge Boys will celebrate their 24th Anniversary of their annual Christmas Tour in 2013 with a festive show featuring live performances of holiday classics and their biggest hits.  Additionally, Richard Sterban, Duane Allen, William Lee Golden, and Joe Bonsall are celebrating the 40th Anniversary of The Oak Ridge Boys.  The Oak Ridge Boys came together in 1973, beginning as gospel singers, became a top act in country music and then crossed over to pop with the monster hit “Elvira” in 1981.  The song became their fourth No. 1 country hit, reached No. 5 on the pop charts, won the group a Grammy® award and went on to become one of only a handful of singles released out of Nashville ever to go double platinum.  The Oak Ridge Boys recently became members of the Grand Ole Opry®.

The Oak Ridge Boys are known for creating a show atmosphere of holiday cheer with their Christmas tour, which consistently receives rave reviews and has become a holiday tradition in its own right since its start 24 years ago.  The masterful blends of new and traditional yuletide tunes are enhanced by the powerhouse group’s renowned four-part harmonies.

“Christmas is my favorite time of the year. The Oak Ridge Boys get to take our Christmas tour all over the USA, sharing joy, happiness, gifts, families getting together, and, of course, the story of the birth of Jesus Christ. Our Christmas shows are the highlight of our year,” says Oak Ridge Boy Duane Allen.

The Oak Ridge Boys will be filling the holiday season with the celebrated sounds of their Christmas Time’s A-Coming CD (Gaither Gospel Series). The album was released to retail outlets in 2012, with an exclusive version of the CD available at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store®, featuring two heartwarming bonus tracks that capture the meaning of the season. The Christmas Time’s A-Coming album marks the Oaks’ sixth holiday CD.
“Our 40th Anniversary tour dates are turning into celebrations everywhere we go. We have chosen a busy schedule so we can say ‘thank you’ to the many promoters, radio stations, fairs, festivals, and our wonderful fans who have all supported us for so many years. We hope everyone will come on out and celebrate with us,” adds Allen.
Christmas Time’s-A-Comin’ Tour Dates:
Nov 5-7 – Branson, MO
Nov 12-14 – Branson, MO
Nov 16 – Wisconsin Dells, WS
Nov 19-21 – Branson, MO
Nov 25 – Portsmouth, OH
Nov 29 – Sioux Falls, SD
Nov 30 – Des Moines, IA
Dec 1 – Cheyenne, WY
Dec 2 – Salt Lake City, UT
Dec 3 – Cedar City, UT
Dec 5 – Billings, MT
Dec 6 – Boise, ID
Dec 7 – Kennewick, WA
Dec 8 – Lewiston, ID
Dec 9 – Spokane, WA
Dec 10 – Eugene, OR
Dec 11 – Redding, CA
Dec 12 – Yountville, CA
Dec 13 – Northridge, CA
Dec 14 – Coachella, CA
Dec 15 – Tucson, AZ
Dec 16 – Amarillo, TX
Dec 17 – Topeka, KS
Dec 18 – Cedar Rapids, IA
Dec 19 – Wabash, IN
Dec 20 – Akron, OH
Dec 21 – Toledo, OH
Dec 22 – Green Bay, WI
ORB_ChristmasCD_cvr_lrgTracks on Christmas Time’s A-Coming
1. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
2. Peterbilt Sleigh
3. Here Comes Santa Claus
4. Christmas Time’s A-Coming
5. White Christmas
6. All I Want For Christmas Is You
7. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
8. Getting Ready For A Baby
9. Joy To The World
10. Mary, Did You Know?
11. Mary Had A Little Lamb
12. Glorious Impossible

ORB_40thAnniv_cvr_lrgTracks on The Oak Ridge Boys 40th Anniversary Collection
1. Leaving Louisiana In The Broad Daylight
2. Elvira
3. An American Family
4. Thank God For Kids
5. Amazing Grace
6. God Will Take Care of You
7. American Made
8. Jesus Is Coming Soon
9. G.I. Joe & Lillie
10. How Great Thou Art
11. The Star-Spangled Banner

For more information, please visit:

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