Archive for July, 2008

Bus accident, cookbook… and more

July 30, 2008

MarkC1 Mark Chestnut and his band were involved in an accident in their tour bus, while driving back to Nashville this past Sunday morning. They were headed home following a performance in Ft. Worth, Texas, when the bus was rear-ended. Police cars at the scene said a young male driver was driving 100 mph, without a license Fortunately, no one was hurt, but the young driver did total his car.

Best known for songs like “Bubba Shot the Jukebox,” “Too Cold at Home,” “Blame it on Texas,” “Gonna Get a Life,” and “Goin’ Through the Big D,” Mark said he really prefers the bus to flying, and of course added, “I’m really, really glad all the boys are all right.”

Trisha1 Trisha Yearwood has added “author” to her list of “things I’ve done.” She’s compiled a cookbook called “Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen. The cookbook is being called wonderful, and is full of down-home style cooking, using recipes form her family.

I’m not sure if “She’s in Love with the Boy” was Trisha’s biggest hit, but it’s the first one that comes to mind when I think of her music.

LadyAConcert 008 

Lady Antebellum has their second single in the Top 40, “Lookin’ For a Good Time.” Early in August, you’ll be able to catch the group in Uniontown, Pa., Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Marion, Ill; Des Moines, Iowa, and Troy, Ohio. Be sure to check out their web page for a complete listing of their fair and concert dates.

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That’s it for now. Again, thanks so much for reading. An d remember to write – that’s the only way I know what you want to see here, and whether or not you have any news and photos for me!

Little reminder… maybe nightly reminder for a few weeks — mark your calendars for Aug. 28, and remember to watch David Letterman to see Randy Houser’s first national television appearance!



Randy Houser’s national TV debut

July 29, 2008

031_31 I got some great news yesterday, and of course I wanted to share it with all of you. That’s Randy Houser from his June concert at Winged Deer Park in Johnson City, TN… you know Randy, he sings that absolutely fabulous song “Anything Goes”… Well, Randy is about to make his national television debut.

015_15 You’ll be able to catch Randy on Late Night with David Letterman on Thursday, Aug. 28, on CBS. It airs here at 11:30 p.m., but be sure to check your local listings because I know you won’t want to miss this! I can’t wait.

Randy said he was as excited as a kid at Christmas, when he heard he was doing the show  … Randy, I am too! And I’m not even going to be on the Letterman show! 006_6 - Copy

I’m really anxious for Randy to get back to Northeast Tennessee, and I hope all of you will look for him in your area, too. He puts on a great show – and I haven’t met anyone yet who doesn’t love that single he has out now!

I’ll be back tomorrow night with more news, but I hope you will all mark your calendars for Thursday, Aug. 28 — and stay up to watch David Letterman.

Drop me a line soon, let me know how you’re spending the remaining few weeks of your summer vacation… and hopefully,  I’ll see YOU at the Fairs!


Time for News….

July 28, 2008

Toby            PRZ-007876 Could there possibly be anyone who has forgotten the feud between Toby Keith and the Dixie Chicks? I didn’t think so. Well, it seems the Alliance for Climate Protection’s “We Campaign,” wanted to use Toby and the Chicks in one of their commercials. You’ve seen them – they put a Democrat up against a Republican (or two other people who don’t particularly get along) and start off with “We don’t always agree on everything, but….” You would think that would be a perfect television ad for Toby and the Chicks; but apparently it isn’t going to happen. Toby told the San Jose Mercury News that they had set up three dates for the shoot, but every time, the trio wasn’t available. Toby also said that he has never spoken to the Dixie Chicks, “We’ve never met, officially,” he said.

George Jones Country Hound is reporting that this fall’s participants in the George Jones University program will have a unique opportunity afforded them through a brand new Country Music competition. George is giving registrants the chance to be the opening act at one of his upcoming concerts. Music industry executives and entrepreneurs will judge the competitors on their artistry, vocal ability and stage presence. Competitors must be registered for the Fall session of GJU. The best performer will open for George.

chris-cagle Chris Cagle was found not guilty of domestic violence charges brought against him from a domestic dispute that took place in May 2008 at his Nashville home.

Chris and his girlfriend, Jennifer Tant, were both arrested at his home after a fight in which Jen struck Chris with an umbrella, and Chris hit Tant with her purse.

The case came to a quick end when Jennifer took the stand and refused to testify against Chris. Bill Ramsey, Chris’s attorney, released the following statement: “It’s a shame these charges were ever brought, period! Chris was not, and never was, guilty of domestic violence, abuse or assault, and the Judge properly found him “Not Guilty”. Chris is relieved the accuracy of the matter has been revealed and the ordeal is over.”

At least this ordeal is over. Last I heard, Chris is still due in court in Arizona on Sept. 23 over an incident that took place there in December.

We haven’t done birthdays for a while … so here’s a few for you; David Ball turned 55 on July 9. Haven’t heard much from him since “Private Andrew Malone.” David Ball

Duncan Cameron, guitarist for Sawyer Brown, turned 52 on July 27; Bobbie Gentry is 64, also celebrating on the 27th; Martina McBride is celebrating her 42nd birthday July 29; Dwight O’Brien, guitarist for Little Texas will be 44 on July 30.

chad-brock-artist-photos Chad Brock, remember him? I wonder where he’s been since the “She said, Yes”. He will be 45 on July 31.

And, if you are planning on taking your favorite star a little birthday gift during the Appalachian Fair … the only one with a birthday close to the Fair run is Jake Owen, his is Aug. 28. The other Gray Fair performers will celebrate their birthdays like this: Tracy Lawrence, Jan. 27; Josh Gracin, Oct. 18; Heidi Newfield, May 22; and Chris Young, June 12. As for Lillie Mae, Frank, Scarlett and Amber-Dawn (Jypsi) … I have no idea. I just might have to ask them when I go to their concert on Aug. 23. 

That’s all for now. Hope to hear from you all soon! And I’ll see you at the Fair.

On a Personal Note….

July 27, 2008

Relay Smokies 2005-01-01 001 Since I haven’t put anything new up here for a few days, I thought I’d better let you all know where I’ve been, and what I’ve been up to.

One day last week, I went to Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg, and while I was there, got to attend a Tennessee Smokies baseball game. They have got a beautiful stadium, and here’s a shot of their scoreboard.

Relay Smokies 2005-01-01 003 The mascots for the team made their rounds, and stopped by the box suite where we were sitting – here’s a picture of some of the fans with the mascots.  And a photo of the field.


Relay Smokies 2005-01-01 002 I’ve

I’ve also been busy with our annual Relay For Life for the American Cancer Society. This year, our county goal was $115,000 – we’re at $106,000 right now, but money is still coming in, and we are confident that we will make our goal. The county theme was “Don’t Give Cancer a Sporting Chance,” and our team chose football – here’s a picture of our team banner, and a few of our “players”. Relay Smokies 2005-01-01 007

I know a lot of you are familiar with Relay For Life, but those of you who aren’t really need to look into getting involved. It’s a fun event, and a great way to raise money for cancer research. Just call your local American Cancer Society office for the details.

And, to all my great friends in country music, we could use your help … if any of you in the entertainment field have a free date this year and would like to help us out with a benefit concert for our fund raiser, please contact me. We’d love to have you!

We’ve got Fairs right around the corner, and a lot of other country music news, so check back tomorrow for some of that. And, remember, Aug. 8, is the release date for Toby Keith’s new movie, “Beer For My Horses.” First one to see it – please drop me a line and let me know what you thought. I’m not sure if we’ll get it around here opening day or not, but I’m hoping!

Take care, keep in touch, and thanks for reading Country’s Chatter!

Billy Ray Cyrus at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino

July 22, 2008

Billy Ray 9 Billy Ray Cyrus did, what I’m told, was a great show at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino in Cherokee, N.C. on July 19. That was my birthday, but I didn’t go to the show – I was in West Tennessee – But fortnately, I have a friend who did go! I need to say Thank You to Cindy Lewis of Erwin, who gave me these great pictures of Billy Ray to post for all of you.

I guess Nashville isn’t all that far from Cherokee, N.C., and Billy was able to fit the casino show into his Nashville Star schedule.

Have any of you been keeping up with Nashville Star? That’s something we need to discuss soon – in another Country Chatter Post. Since I’m getting ready to head to Gatlinburg for the next two days, I’ll use the rest of this post to put up more of Cindy’s great photos – and one of Cindy with Billy Ray — you gotta love those Meet & Greet passes!

   Billy Ray 1     Billy Ray 3

Billy Ray 10  Billy Ray 8

Billy Ray 5  Billy Ray 6

Thanks again for the pictures, Cindy! That’s all for tonight – I’ll talk to you guys soon.

Meet Lea Marie – Musician, Songwriter, Singer

July 22, 2008

I told you Saturday night, that1979-11-30 001 1979-11-30 050 I was in Nashville for a few days, and that was the reason I didn’t get to Fun Fest in Kingsport. And I also said I would tell you why I didn’t get to the concert – and here is the reason. I went to the annual Tennessee Press Association awards luncheon, with our publisher and several co-workers.  The event was held this year at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel.

The Erwin Record won 17 awards that day, quite an accomplishment. Among the awards was being named the best weekly newspaper in the state for the sixth consecutive year!

Just had to share that with all of you – now, let me tell you about Lea Marie. She was in the lobby of the hotel playing piano, and singing. I talked briefly with her, and the people she was with, and learned quite a bit about this very talented young lady.

1979-11-30 001 1979-11-30 046 Lea Marie is 16 years old, and lives in Los Angeles. She is originally form Manhattan, NY, and spent her teen years in Connecticut. She has written more than 100 songs on piano and guitar, and her first single is currently at the No. 83 spot on the top 100 in Europe.

She writes and sings pop, country, R&B and Broadway, and loves all music. Her self-titled debut album is scheduled for release on Sept. 16. Lea Marie wrote all of the song on the CD. In addition to the 11 songs, there is a DVD with six of her music videos, and a 12 page booklet of lyrics and photos.

1979-11-30 001 1979-11-30 049 You can hear some of her music at her home page, as well as on YouTube.

She’s young, talented, and has some big plans for her future.  It will be interesting to see where she’s headed. Go listen to her music, and let me know what you guys think of Lea Marie.

That’s all for now – I have a few errands to run, and it’s already getting late. And, to those of you who are waiting for an e-mail reply from me … just give me another day or two, and I’ll get you answered then. When you go out of town for a couple of days, everything seems to get behind.

Take care! More Later! Love you guys!

Appalachian Fair – One last time … until the fair starts (then fair updates nightly)

July 21, 2008

I already had the final schedule for the Appalachian Fair posted, in fact, I put it up in June. However, the fair has finally released it, and I thought with the fair less than a month away, it should be posted again – so here goes.

Monday, Aug. 18, Tracy Lawrence; Tuesday, Aug. 19, Josh Gracin; Wednesday, Aug. 20, Jake Owen; Thursday, Aug. 21, Heidi Newfield; Friday, Aug. 22, Chris Young; and Saturday, Aug. 23, Jypsi.

Tracy Lawrence 1   JoshGracin

Jake Owen2  Heidi New

chris young   jypsi

There you have it – your 2008 Appalachian Fair Line-up. I’ll be there every night – will I see you? For onstage photos of the Fair performances, and a candid shot here and there, check back to Country’s Chatter beginning Aug. 18. But don’t wait till then! Hope you are all coming back often to “keep in tune with your favorite country stars.”

Take Care!

Little Big Town wraps up Fun Fest

July 21, 2008

Little Big 4 Little Big Town closed out Fun Fest this year, with their Saturday night concert. And, according to Brittany Johnson, who sent me these pictures, it was “one of the best concerts” she’s ever seen. Here are a few of her photos from the night.

Kingsport did a great job with Fun Fest this year, and are telling us the crowds were the biggest they’ve had at the event.

Little Big     Little Big 1

Little Big 2      Little Big 3

Little Big 5 Thanks again, Brittany. And thanks everyone for reading Country’s Chatter! I really appreciate your comments and suggestions. Keep letting me know what you’d like to see on this blog, and I’ll do my best to get it on t here for you.

More later!

Fun Fest 2008

July 20, 2008

FunFest6 I didn’t make it to Fun Fest this year, but I have a very good reason. Before I get to that, let me send out a huge Thank you To Birttany Johnson, who was kind enough to send me these photos of Rodney Adkins and Ashley Gearing. Rodney and Ashley took the stage at Fun Fest on Friday Night.

I was in Nashville this weekend, and in a day or two, I’ll be telling you all about the reason for that trip. I’ll also be putting up some info about a new singer/songwriter I met during that trip.

FunFest4Here we have WXBQ on-air personalities Matthew James, Marc Tragler, Reggie Neel and Steve Stroud who were all on hand to get the show started. You can catch these guys at The Appalachian Fair in Gray (Aug. 18-23).

Here are a few more of Birttany’s great photos from Friday night at Fun Fest!

FunFest9        FunFair9   FunFest1  FunFair12

FunFest2    FunFair10

FunFest8     FunFest7

Thanks again, Brittany, for the great photos from what I am sure was a great show! Hope the rest of you will remember to send your photos from summer concerts and fairs you attend this year. I’d love to get them posted for you! Write soon, and enjoy the rest of your Sunday! Talk to you real soon.

Kenny & Company in Nashville

July 16, 2008

LisaP6 On Saturday, July 5, while most of us were resting up after a long night of fireworks and other July 4 celebrations, Lisa Perkins, from Elizabethton, and a bus load of WXBQ listeners were on their way to Nashville to see Kenny Chesney’s concert. Lisa sent me a few pictures, and I wanted to share them with you.

The gang didn’t get home until 6 a.m. the next morning, but I’m sure they didn’t mind losing a little sleep. Marc Tragler, from WXBQ made the trip with them, and said everyone really had a great time.

Also taking the stage that day were Leann Rimes, Keith Urban, Gary Allen, and Jennifer Nettles. The photos of Jennifer and Keith were taken from the large screens in the stadium, which I’m sure gave everyone a perfect view of the entertainment.

LisaP4 - Copy   LisaP2 - CopyLisaP - Copy (2)                                                                      

LisaP1 - Copy   LisaP2 - Copy








Lisa, thanks so much for sharing those with us. And all of you, please remember to grab some photos when you get to the concerts this summer. Sent them to me, and I’ll be happy to post them for everyone to enjoy.

I’m going to be away for the weekend. In fact, I’m leaving tomorrow right after work. So I’ll talk to you all on Monday evening. Hope you have a great weekend! Drop me a line when you can.