Categories
Go Country 105

In quarantine, Randy Travis thinks back to how his life suddenly changed after his 2013 stroke

ABC/Image Group LARandy Travis and his wife, Mary, consider themselves to be lucky during the COVID-19 lockdown: They live on a farm, with plenty of opportunities for fresh air.  Plus, the country legend has plenty of personal experience with having to adjust to a dramatic life change overnight. In 2013, he suffered a debilitating stroke that robbed him of his ability to speak or sing.

“Randy and I were talking about it, reflecting on how our world kind of shut down and came to screeching halt seven years ago, when the stroke happened in July 2013,” Mary tells Rolling Stone in the couple’s latest interview.

“That’s when we hit a brick wall and everything changed and we were isolated from everything we had known before,” she continues. “So to us, [the COVID-19 shutdown] was not that much of a transition.”

Still, the pair acknowledge that for much of the rest of the world, the pandemic has brought life changes on an entirely new scale.

“But for people that have never been through something like [Randy’s stroke] in life, or a tragedy where your whole world has shattered and it changes in an instant, I’m sure that it’s hard to adjust to, because it was hard for us to adjust seven years ago,” Mary reflects.

Though Randy is still unable to perform the way he could before his stroke, he continues to recover, even doing things that his doctors didn’t think he would ever again be able to do.

For example, Randy will deliver a landmark performance on Josh Turner’s upcoming project, Country State of Mind, contributing to Josh’s rendition of “Forever and Ever, Amen.” His participation in the new version of the song marks Randy’s first recording session since his stroke.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Categories
Go Country 105

Tenille Townes' stacked “Big Hearts for Big Kids” virtual benefit raises $89,000

Weston HeflinTenille Townes hosted a virtual version of her annual “Big Hearts for Big Kids” fundraiser concert this week, performing a set from the stage of Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.

A long list of country stars offered from-home performances, too. Dierks Bentley, Luke Combs, Brandi Carlile, Ashley McBryde and more joined the lineup, helping the event raise a total of $89,000. Since its 2010 launch, “Big Hearts for Big Kids” has raised over $2 million for children in need.

Proceeds from the event benefit Sunrise House, a youth shelter located in Tenille’s hometown of Grande Prairie, Alberta, Canada, as well as the Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee’s Troup 6000.

“Thinking about how difficult circumstances can make the beginning of somebody’s story always breaks my heart,” Tenille wrote on Instagram after the event. “But nights like last night always inspire me because we really can show up for each other. Thank you for showing up last night.”

During her set, Tenille dipped into her brand-new debut album, The Lemonade Stand. The project features her breakout hit, “Somebody’s Daughter,” which is itself a meditation on the impact of homelessness and the fact that everyone has a story, no matter their circumstances.

In case you missed it, the “Big Hearts for Big Kids” concert will be available to watch on Tenille’s YouTube channel for the next week.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Categories
Go Country 105

Country Music Hall of Fame extends closure through the end of July

View Pictures/Universal Images Group via Getty ImagesDue to the continued threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum has once again extended its shutdown. The downtown Nashville location will now remain closed to the public through July 31.

In a statement, the Hall of Fame CEO Kyle Young stressed the importance of keeping visitors and staff safe, especially as COVID-19 case numbers rise in Tennessee and beyond.

“With the recent increase of COVID-19 cases in Nashville and throughout the country, we determined it was necessary to extend our temporary closure to protect the health of our staff and guests,” he explained. “We look forward to welcoming guests and having them explore our galleries once again. When we reopen, we want to make sure it is in the safest possible environment.”

Before making the decision not to re-open as originally planned in June, the Hall of Fame had already decided to cancel in-person events — such as performances, screenings, summer camps, the internship program and family programming — through the end of July.

However, the Hall of Fame is helming a number of online offerings to tide country fans over until it’s safe to re-open. Would-be visitors can listen to episodes of the museum’s Voices in the Hall podcast, watch its weekly Songwriter Sessions live on Instagram, and enjoy a number of family-friendly online workshops.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Categories
News Daypop

Mom Of Idaho Kids Found Dead Is Now Facing New Charges

New charges have been filed against an Idaho woman after the remains of two of her children were found months after they disappeared. Lori Vallow was charged with two felony counts of conspiracy to destroy, alter or conceal evidence, according to court documents.

Human remains were found on the property of Vallow’s fifth husband, Chad Daybell, and were identified as those of Tylee Ryan, 17, and Joshua “JJ” Vallow, 7. The children were reported missing in September. Authorities have not said how the children died, and Daybell and Vallow have not been charged in their deaths.

A search for the siblings began in November; Vallow and Daybell refused to cooperate and left the state. They were found the following month in Hawaii, and Vallow was arrested and extradited to Idaho. Vallow is also being investigated in the death of Daybell’s former wife, Tammy Daybell, who was found dead in her home in October. Chad Daybell and Vallow married weeks after Tammy Daybell’s death.

Vallow was initially jailed on charges of desertion and nonsupport of dependent children. Her bond remains at $1 million. The next hearing is scheduled for Aug. 10.

Police say missing kids’ mom helped keep their bodies hidden

Via abcnews.go.com
 

Editorial credit: B Brown / Shutterstock.com

Categories
News Daypop

U.S. Senate Votes To Extend Small Business Relief Program Through August

The U.S. Senate unanimously voted on Tuesday to extend a $660 billion lending program in an effort to help small businesses that have been hit hard by the coronavirus. The House of Representatives must also approve the extension, which would keep the Paycheck Protection Program operating through August 8.

The measure passed unanimously in the Senate. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told lawmakers that a full economic recovery is unlikely until people feel safer going out. Congress has signed off on roughly $3 trillion in aid so far, but Powell and other policymakers have said more will be needed.

The Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration have handed out $515 billion since April to help companies make rent and keep workers employed.

Senate extends small business coronavirus relief program through August

Via www.nbcnews.com
 

Categories
Country Daypop

Jake Owen Defends Chase Rice After Widespread Criticism Of Rice’s Concert

Jake Owen is coming to Chase Rice’s defense, after songwriter Abe Stoklasa called Rice a “f–king disaster” and told him to retire. Stoklasa has written the hit tracks “Fix” for Chris Lane and “Get to You” for Michael Ray.

Following Rice’s controversial concert in eastern Tennessee on Saturday, Rice made an official statement on his Instagram page. However Stoklasa attacked Rice, saying in part, “My whole industry hates you.”

An hour later, Stoklasa apologized for saying the whole industry hates Rice, but not before Owen weighed in, saying, “Hey @abestoklasa … you are a talented, smart guy. Why lower yourself to a post like this? It’s sad man. What you said is ridiculous. ‘Hate?’ … you’re gonna use a word like that, in a time like this? Chase is my friend. I am a part of this industry, and trust me it’s not just yours. I stick up for my friends. I’ve always thought you were a great musician, songwriter and voice. You are better than this. That was straight ignorant thing to say.”

Jake Owen Defends Chase Rice From Songwriter’s Attack

Via tasteofcountry.com
 

Editorial credit: SD Mack / Shutterstock.com

Categories
Country Daypop

Kenny Chesney Tops Album Charts With ‘Hear And Now’

Kenny Chesney has earned his 31st No. 1 single with “Here and Now,” which hit the top of Billboard’s Country Airplay chart this week.

The track was written by Craig Wiseman, David Garcia and David Lee Murphy at a writing retreat Kenny set up in Malibu. Says Kenny. “It was the perfect song as we were all getting ready for another summer of shows. But now, in some ways, this song is even more in the moment because we all have to remember to find joy.”

Kenny’s 31st No. 1 single on the Billboard Country Airplay chart extends his lead for most chart-topping his, followed by Tim McGraw with 29, Blake Shelton with 27, and Alan Jackson and George Strait, both with 26.

Take a look at the video for “Here and Now” at the link: here

Kenny Chesney Tops Album Charts With ‘Hear And Now’

Via www.antimusic.com
 

Editorial credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

Categories
Go Country 105

Mommy-shamed Maren Morris considers “curbing” how many pictures she shares of baby Hayes

ABC/Image Group LASince Maren Morris welcomed baby Hayes this spring, she and her husband, fellow artist Ryan Hurd, have been sharing plenty of adorable snapshots of him on social media.

However, the singer says that might change, in part because she’s been the target of some mommy-shaming.

This week, Maren posted a photo of herself and Hayes enjoying a day at the lake, wearing matching swimsuits and sunglasses and riding on board an inflatable boat. Of course, one Twitter user had to chime in and ask why Hayes wasn’t wearing a life jacket.

While many fans jumped to Maren’s defense, the singer explained that she has to deal with that kind of commentary every time she shares a picture of her son.

“Honestly, I get so many criticisms of my motherhood on anything I post of Hayes, so I may just discontinue posting photos of him,” she responded. “Sucks but it’s kind of where I’m at.”

Among those who chimed in to support Maren: fellow country artist Mickey Guyton, who encouraged her not to take the Twitter trolls’ words to heart.

“You’re an amazing mother and those that have something to say don’t deserve to see this beautiful life you’ve created in love,” Mickey wrote.

In response, Maren thanked Mickey for the support, saying that she and Ryan had been considering scaling back how much they share about their baby for other reasons, too. Still, she admitted that the negativity she was facing was especially hurtful, since so much of it was coming from other moms.

“We talked about curbing posting photos anyway now that he’s a little bit older, but the added crap from (mostly other moms) folks definitely forced our hand,” Maren pointed out.

By Carena Liptak
Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

 


 

Categories
Pop Daypop

2020 MTV VMAs To Take Place In NYC This August

The 2020 MTV VMAs will take place in New York City.  NY Governor Andrew Cuomo made the announcement, revealing that this year’s ceremony will take place at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on August 30th.

The news came during a larger press conference regarding Phase III of NYC’s reopening process, which begins July 6th.  Social distancing will still be required during this phase, and the 2020 VMAs will include “limited or no audience” allowed in the Barclays arena. 

The VMAs will become the first major awards show to take place live inside a physical venue since the outbreak occurred. The ESPYs, Daytime Emmy Awards, Kids’ Choice Awards, Daytime Emmys and BET Awards were all filmed remotely. The 2020 Emmys, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, is scheduled to air later this summer, though it’s unclear whether it will be an entirely virtual ceremony. 

2020 MTV VMAs Date and Location Revealed

Via popcrush.com
 

Editorial credit: Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

Categories
Pop Daypop

The Weeknd Donates $1 Million To Coronavirus Relief

The Weeknd is donating $1 million donation towards coronavirus relief efforts. According to Variety, the artist donated $500,000 to MusiCares, which has provided financial support to recording artists during this time, and another $500,000 to the Scarborough Health Network, which is combatting COVID-19 in his hometown.

The Weeknd’s donation follow his $500,000 contribution to the Black Lives Matter movement earlier this month. 

The Weeknd Donates $1 Million to COVID Relief Efforts

Via www.spin.com
 

Editorial credit: lev radin / Shutterstock.com