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Miranda Lambert and Crystal Light Introduce "Playable Poster" Technology on Platinum Tour


Image Courtesy Kraft Foods GroupMiranda Lambert and Crystal Light have partnered to create the United States' first-ever "playable poster" to give fans a chance to listen to her latest album, Platinum.

The new technology will be on display at stops on Miranda's Platinum tour. The Crystal Light poster uses conductive ink to sends a signal to a tiny processor that sends the music through a mega-watt speaker attached to the back of the poster.

Miranda says, "I’m always thrilled to introduce new ways for my fans to interact with my music. What better way to kick off the Platinum tour than with my favorite brand Crystal Light, and a fun, unique way for concertgoers to enjoy my album.”

Miranda's Platinum tour continues through October.

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Trace Adkins Making TV Appearances This Weekend; Two New Vocalists Added to Touring Band


Image Courtesy Kristin Barlowe/Sunshine SachsTrace Adkins has a busy weekend lined up, starting with a Friday morning performance on FOX News' Fox & Friends. The mini-concert is open to the public; head over to FoxandFriends.com/Concert for further details. On Saturday, Trace performs the national anthem at Boston's Fenway Park as the Red Sox take on the Yankees. Look for that game on FOX as well.

Trace is also keeping the road hot with his band, the Sarepta Gentlemen's Club.  They've just added a female vocal duo to the lineup: Jill & Kate, who previously toured as backup singers with Kelly Clarkson for six years.  Trace says with a smile, "With the addition of these soulful voices, the Sarepta Gentlemen's Club may just have a shot at salvation after all."

Trace is on the road playing 30 shows between now and an October 25 date in Raleigh, NC.

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Tyler Farr Drops First Single from Upcoming Sophomore Album


Image Courtesy Sony Music NashvilleTyler Farr is following up his back-to-back #1 hits, "Whiskey in My Water" and "Redneck Crazy," with a brand-new single from a brand-new album.

The song is called "A Guy Walks into a Bar," but it's not the amped-up party anthem you might expect based on the title. The heartbreak ballad tells the story of a guy starting a relationship with a girl he meets in a bar, only to return to the watering hole once she eventually says goodbye.

"A Guy Walks into a Bar" is now available for digital download at iTunes.

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Country Star Trivia


Comstock/ThinkstockWho was Hunter Hayes' duet partner on "Everybody's Got Somebody but Me?" ANSWER: Jason Mraz.

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Florida Georgia Line's Concert Crowds Include Fans of All Ages


Image Courtesy Republic NashvilleFlorida Georgia Line is credited with introducing a younger generation to country music in the past few years, but that doesn't mean their fans are all in high school and college. In fact, the duo's Tyler Hubbard tells ABC News Radio they see pretty much every age group represented at their concerts and the meet-and-greets they hold before the show stars.

"It's a pretty nice mix," says Tyler. "You got five-year-old kids. You got [a] 70-year-old coming through."

FGL's Brian Kelley adds, "And then you got the parents coming, too. College kids."

Tyler goes on to call their shows a "big family night," but he stresses, "At the same time, it's a party."

Thanks to their collaborations with Nelly and Jason Derulo, Florida Georgia Line has picked up a lot of fans who otherwise wouldn't listen to country music. The duo takes that as a big compliment.

Says Brian, "We love representing country music. We feel it's an honor. We take pride in it. We love the format -- it's amazing. It's changed our life. Country music is alive and well more than ever it feels like."

Florida Georgia Line's string of hits continues with their latest single, "Dirt." Their new album is due out later this year.

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Luke Bryan Announces Farm Tour 2014 Dates


ABC/Matt BrownLuke Bryan will launch his sixth annual Farm Tour with an October 1 concert in Knoxville, Tennessee.

This year’s Farm Tour will once again include shows in eight towns, wrapping up October 11 with a concert in Macon, Georgia.

Last year, Luke performed for more than 115,000 fans in eight Farm Tour towns.

A portion of the proceeds from the shows fund local college scholarships for students from a farming family in the communities the tour visits.  Get ticket details at Luke's official website.  Special VIP experiences are also available for purchase. Details at cidentertainment.com.

Here are the dates for Farm Tour 2014:

10/1 -- Knoxville, TN, Maple Lane Farms
10/2 -- Auburn, AL, Ingram Farms
10/3 -- Tallahassee, FL, Cross Creek Place
10/4 -- Gainesville, FL, Whitehurst Cattle Farm
10/8 -- Statesboro, GA, Perry Field
10/9 -- Athens, GA, Meldon Farm
10/10 -- Columbia, SC, Culler Farms
10/11 -- Macon, GA, Midway at Central City Park

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Nashville Notes


Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockBig & Rich's new album, Gravity, comes out September 23 featuring a collaboration with Tim McGraw on the song "Lovin' Lately."

Brad Paisley has released a new version of his single, "River Bank," featuring country rapper Colt Ford.

Hunter Hayes' new video for "Tattoo" is now on CMT. The clip features animated graphics, graffiti art and a beautiful brunette woman playing Hunter's onscreen love interest.

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Joe Nichols Explains How His "Yeah" Video Went from "Cheap and Cheesy" to Comic Book Cool


Image Courtesy Red Bow RecordsJoe Nichols' new video, "Yeah," uses animation to place a young couple on the pages of a comic book as their love story plays out over the course of a night.  It's easily one of country's most compelling videos so far this year, but that comic book effect was actually an afterthought. Joe and his team originally wanted the video to look cheap and cheesy with the couple acting out the song around a fake campfire and fake trees set up in a studio. That idea didn't quite pan out, though.

Joe tells ABC News Radio, "It came off looking incredibly cheap and cheesy. That was the only problem. It was supposed to be funny, and it kind of missed."

He adds with a laugh, "It just looked like we ran out of money or something."

Luckily, Joe's video director had the idea to take that cheesy-looking footage and add animation to create the comic book look.

"He showed me 30 seconds of it, and I was like, 'Yeah. Love that!' It changed everything, "Joe explains. "It was probably a mediocre video at best to I think it's a pretty dang good one right now."

"Yeah" is included on Joe Nichols' latest album, Crickets, now in stores.

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Jason Aldean and Luke Bryan Wait All Year for Their Buck Commander Hunting Trips


Image Courtesy CMAJason Aldean and Luke Bryan will join their Buck Commander buddies -- Willie Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame and baseball players Adam LaRoche and Ryan Langerhans -- for about two or three hunting trips this winter. The guys always have a blast on these trips, and all the action ends up on the Outdoor Channel series, Buck Commander.

Jason tells USA Today Hunt & Fish magazine, "There are so many hunting shows out there that are all about the technical hunt. But we wanted to capture the fun and friendships that are developed in the outdoors."

The hunting trips also give Jason a chance to unwind from the stress of being on the road all summer long.  "It’s like a vacation," Jason says, "and I think all of us, especially with our careers, wait all year for those times.”

Jason continues his 2014 Burn It Down tour Friday night in Philadelphia.

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Report: Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood Selling Malibu Home for $7.5 Million


Image Courtesy CMAIt looks like Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood are pulling up stakes in Malibu. According to Variety, the couple's California home is now on the market for $7.5 million. The house was built in the late '50s and was remodeled in 2007. It boasts four bedrooms and three-and-a-half baths.

Garth and Trisha will be spending more time in Nashville as they spend the next few years on a world tour. They plan to keep a residence back in Oklahoma, too.

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Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Zac Brown Band and More Added to CMA Music Festival Special


Image Courtesy Red Light ManagementTim McGraw and Faith Hill will perform their new hit, "Meanwhile Back at Mama's," on the CMA Music Festival: Country's Night to Rock special next week on ABC. Zac Brown Band is teaming up with Bon Jovi's Richie Sambora on the special, and Justin Moore will sing "Home Sweet Home" with Vince Neil and Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue.

Look for show hosts Little Big Town to sing in addition to performances from Jake Owen and Darius Rucker. They join previously announced performers including Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton.

The CMA Music Festival: Country's Night to Rock airs Tuesday, August 5 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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David Nail Launching I'm a Fire Tour September 11 in Mississippi


Image Courtesy MCA NashvilleDavid Nail launches his I'm a Fire tour this fall with special guests Native Run. The first show is set for September 11 in Oxford, MS, with 22 dates announced so far. More shows will be added soon.

Headlining his own tour gives David the chance to play much longer sets than he would opening for another artist. He tells Rolling Stone Country, "I've always felt like we benefit so much more when we can really lay back and play an entire 75- to 90-minute show. We can show the range of the past three records."

Here are the I'm a Fire tour dates:

9/11 -- Oxford, MS, The Lyric Oxford
9/12 -- New Orleans, LA, House of Blues
9/24 -- Athens, GA, Georgia Theatre
9/26 -- Tallahassee, FL, The Moon
9/27 -- Orlando, FL, House of Blues
10/9 -- Wichita, KS, The Cotillion
10/10 -- Denver, CO, Grizzly Rose
10/16 -- Tuscaloosa, AL, Jupiter Bar
10/17 -- Jacksonville, FL, Maverick's
10/24 -- Columbia, MO, 9th Street Summerfest
10/26 -- Cincinnati, OH, Bogart's
10/29 -- Springfield, MO, Gillioz Theatre
10/30 -- Tulsa, OK, Cain's Ballroom
10/31 -- San Antonio, TX, Aztec Theatre
11/6 -- Rocky Mount, VA, Harvester Performance Center
11/7 -- Sayreville, NJ, Starland Ballroom
11/8 -- Boston, MA, House of Blues
11/9 -- New York, NY, Irving Plaza
11/11 -- London, ON (CAN), London Concert Theater
11/13 -- Cleveland, OH, House of Blues
11/14 -- Grand Rapids, MI, The Intersection
11/15 -- Green Bay, WI, Meyer Theatre

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Toby Keith Tops "Forbes" Country Cash Kings List for a Second-Straight Year


Show Dog/Universal Forbes magazine has released their 2014 Country Cash Kings list, and Toby Keith tops the countdown for a second straight year, with an estimated $65 million coming in from his tour dates, restaurants and other business ventures.

Taylor Swift is second with $64 million, and Kenny Chesney rounds out the top three with a $44 million payday.

In fourth place, Jason Aldean earned $37 million from about 88 shows during the ranking period.  Luke Bryan took in $34 million for a number-five finish.

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Tim McGraw Reveals Album Cover and Track Listing for "Sundown Heaven Town"


Big Machine RecordsTim McGraw revealed the album cover and track listing for his new project, Sundown Heaven Town. via social media Monday morning. The a album features his latest hit, "Meanwhile Back at Mama's" with wife Faith Hill, as well as a collaboration with Kid Rock on the song "Lincoln Continentals and Cadillacs." The deluxe edition of Sundown Heaven Town will feature a total of 18 tracks, which is an indication of just how excited Tim is about the new music.

He says, "I feel like I’ve got a lot of music in me and that's part of the reason why this album is so soon after the last one and why I wanted to start sharing it with everyone as soon as I could. I’m excited about where music is gonna take me and where I’m gonna take my music."

Tim has been out on his Sundown Heaven Town tour all summer long. The new album is due out September 16.

Here's the Sundown Heaven Town track listing:
"Overrated"
"City Lights"
"Shotgun Rider"
"Dust"
"Diamond Rings and Old Barstools" (with Catherine Dunn)
"Words Are Medicine"
"Sick of Me"
"Meanwhile Back at Mama's" (featuring Faith Hill)
"Keep on Truckin'"
"Last Turn Home"
"Portland, Maine"
"Lookin' for That Girl"
"Still on the Line"

Bonus Tracks:
"Kids Today"
"Lincoln Continentals and Cadillacs" (duet with Kid Rock)
"The View"
"I'm Feelin' You"
"Black Jacket"

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Country Star Trivia


Comstock/ThinkstockWhich member of Florida Georgia Line hails from Florida? ANSWER: Brian Kelley.

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Brantley Gilbert Gets His Racing Fix Watching NASCAR


Image Courtesy Republic NashvilleBrantley Gilbert performed at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as part of the events surrounding the big NASCAR race there this past weekend. The country star always jumps at the chance to play at NASCAR events since he's such a big fan of the sport. In fact, he recently went out for a couple of laps with NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick at the Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Brantley says, "That joker can drive the hell out of some race cars. So I think I became a fan that day of his. He’s just an awesome guy, and it was great hanging out with him.”

Like most race fans, Brantley loves to see a good pile-up on the track.

"I do like watching wrecks," Brantley admits. "I think there’s a few of us out there. It’s fun, you know, when they get a little bit out of control. I don’t want nobody to get hurt."

You can catch Brantley on his Let It Ride tour all summer long. His concert dates are posted at BrantleyGilbert.com.

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Florida Georgia Line's Tyler Hubbard Says Their New Album Is Full of Hit Singles


Image Courtesy Republic NashvilleFlorida Georgia Line has been logging long hours in the studio working on their upcoming album. The new project is due out later this year, and the duo's Tyler Hubbard is giving fans a hint about what to expect with the new music.

"All of [the songs] have their own flavor, their own taste, and all serve their purpose," Tyler tells Rolling Stone Country. "They fit their slot on the record and it's fun to listen to all the songs and not want to skip one. That's one of our goals when we're recording -- slam an album full of singles and make people want to listen to every song."

The first single from FGL's new album, "Dirt," is now on sale at all digital outlets.

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Blake Shelton Reveals How He and Miranda Lambert Deal with Tabloid Gossip


Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleBlake Shelton and Miranda Lambert aren't shocked to see their faces on the cover of supermarket tabloids anymore, but Blake says Miranda was pretty upset with the rags started making up stories about their marriage.

He explains, "I do think some of that early tabloid stuff that happened probably did have an effect on her, and it was a little tough for her to go through."

Miranda is able to shake off the tabloid rumors a little more easily these days, though.

Says Blake, "Now it's as common as slapping a fly off of your back. Know what I mean? It's annoying, but you don't even remember that it happened."

As for the outrageous stories about Blake and Miranda getting divorced and having babies, Blake says it's never true.

"There may be a shred of something in there that they grab a hold of, and then they create this alternative reality," he explains. "I would think they would get bored with it after a while, but they don't."

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Nashville Notes


Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockKeith Urban gave his tour mate Jerrod Niemann a birthday cake, champagne and cigars to celebrate his 35th birthday last week.

Kacey Musgraves will play the historic Gruene Hall in New Braunfels, Texas, on October 23.

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Reba Takes Fans Behind the Scenes of "Pray for Peace" Recording Session


Image Courtesy StarstruckReba's new song and video, "Pray for Peace," has racked up more than 340,000 views since it went live. Now Reba is giving fans a look at the making of "Pray for Peace" in a new video at Billboard.com.

In the clip, Reba gives direction to the musicians on how she wants the song to sound and then goes in to record the track at her studio in Nashville. The video also shows Ronnie Dunn adding his ad lib parts at the end of the song.

"Pray for Peace" is now available as a free download at Reba.com.

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