Double Your Pleasure, Double Your Fun: The Dailey & Vincent Interview

March 2, 2009 // 2 Comments

If anything, Jamie Dailey and Darrin Vincent are double trouble. In a good way, of course. The pair recently swept the SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards, a near-replica of their performance at last fall’s International Bluegrass Music Association Awards, where they claimed seven trophies. On March 31, they’ll release the followup to last year’s critically-acclaimed debut disc, aptly-titled Dailey & Vincent. The duo called from Nashville’s downtown YMCA to discuss their new album and touring plans for 2009 (and beyond). Sponsorships welcomed. Brothers from Different Mothers is your second album together. Were there any shifts in approach or attitude this time around? DV: We wanted to make the recording quality better.  We’re trying to give the best performances we can give. We capture what’s in our hearts and capture the CD in a different light, to make it something that the audience will purchase and play over and over again. “Head Hung Read More

Katie Armiger Aims for Stardom

February 27, 2009 // 2 Comments

Katie Armiger served as GAC’s Artist of the Month in February, and she recently released “Trail of Lies,” the third single from her album, Believe. The Texas-born 17-year-old called Country Universe recently to discuss her burgeoning career. The youth movement on Music Row continues to pick up steam. Artistically, how do you stand out from the crowd of young women who are trying to establish their careers? I think there are a lot of differentiations in our styles. There are a lot of younger artists now for sure, but we have different vocals and different influences. I come from a more empowered standpoint and want the songs to have that view. What singers most influenced you during your childhood? Is there someone that served as a model for the career you would like to create? I would say that Martina McBride would be the big one. I’m also a huge fan of Read More

An Interview with Marty Stuart

February 10, 2009 // 16 Comments

Widely acclaimed as one of country music’s greatest warriors, Marty Stuart turned a childhood obsession into a lifelong career filled with hit records and collaborations with numerous Nashville legends.  A member of the Country Music Foundation and the Grand Ole Opry, he’s preserved the traditions of the genre by assembling a collection of country-related artifacts that has no rival. His most recent project is The Marty Stuart Show, a weekly television program airing Saturday nights on RFD-TV. Stuart discusses the development of the show, his thoughts on the future of country music and his role in honoring its past. What was the single driving force behind creating The Marty Stuart Show? What are your hopes for the future of the program? The most important thing was the right setting, the channel, RFD (a Nashville-based television station focused on rural America programming). I’m a big fan of the network and I’ve watched it grow. As a country music fan, Read More

Interview: Randy Houser

November 17, 2008 // 7 Comments

Tomorrow marks the release of Randy Houser’s debut disc, Anything Goes, a contemporary country album in a traditional vein.  Houser has gained fame through his performance on The Late Show with David Letterman and his songwriting skills on Trace Adkin’s “Honky Tonk Badonkadonk,” and the title track to his first album is firmly entrenched in the top 20 of the country singles chart.  The newcomer called Country Universe recently to discuss his first foray into the spotlight and his thoughts on the music that inspired his chosen path. “Anything Goes” is a rarity on country radio, a story of solitary drinking followed by a one-night stand. What first attracted you to the song? Definitely, for country fans and country listeners, I think the song breaks down what our format is about.  It’s a theme that country music was built on, going through tough emotions.  A lot of people have lived Read More

5 Questions with Adam Gregory

November 7, 2008 // 0 Comments

At only twenty-three years old, Adam Gregory has been performing for ten years in his native Canada. After arriving in Nashville in 2007, he signed a recording contract with Midas Records, who then reformed last year under indie powerhouse Big Machine Records. Earlier this year, Gregory reached the Top 40 with his first single, “Crazy Days,” and last month he released his second single, “What It Takes.” His yet-untitled debut album in the United States is slated for release in Spring 2009. Gregory called Country Universe earlier this week to provide a glimpse into the life and career of the Nashville newcomer. Who is Adam Gregory as an artist? And which artists have inspired this direction? I consider myself as just a guy who sticks to his roots and follows his own path and tries to find meaning in every song. I’ve co-written a lot of songs on the album, Read More

Inside Johnny Cash’s America: A Conversation with Morgan Neville

October 23, 2008 // 7 Comments

There are artists, and then there are people who use their particular craft to speak directly to the core of the human condition, who buck what is familiar and comfortable in pursuit of what is true. If you don’t yet happen to think Johnny Cash falls into the latter category, or have trouble understanding the worldwide veneration of the Man in Black, congratulations; there’s no better time to start your education. Tonight at 9 pm Eastern Standard Time (10 pm Pacific), The Bio Channel will air a two-hour documentary special entitled Johnny Cash’s America – and I’m here to tell you, it’s pretty sweet. Don’t believe me? Well, how about this to whet your appetite: The documentary explores the prominent themes of Cash’s life including love of the land, freedom, justice, family, faith and redemption through exclusive interviews, photos and unreleased music and footage. Interviews include Cash’s sister Joanne, son Read More

A Conversation with Little Big Town

October 13, 2008 // 8 Comments

This spring, Little Big Town made the leap from independent label Equity Music Group to continue their careers at one of Nashville’s remaining majors, Capitol Records. As the first order of business, Capitol is re-releasing the band’s release from last fall, A Place to Land on Tuesday. Although the album received rave reviews from national music critics, it barely squeaked into the top ten of Billboard’s country albums chart, and the first single, “I’m with the Band,” failed to make an impact at radio. The new version of A Place to Land is buoyed by a new single, “Fine Line,” and four new tracks, including the quartet’s collaboration with Sugarland and Jake Owen, “Life in a Northern Town.” Phillip Sweet of Little Big Town speaks to Country Universe about their topsy-turvy year and what fans can expect from the band as they re-join the ranks of major-label acts. Re-releasing an Read More

A Conversation with Craig Morgan

October 7, 2008 // 5 Comments

The country music carousel has taken Craig Morgan on an unpredictable ride since the United States Army veteran began his career in late 1999 on Atlantic Records.  After a five-year stint at Broken Bow Records, he left the label earlier this year to pursue an opportunity at BNA Records, a division of superpower conglomerate Sony BMG.  His first single with the label, “Love Remembers,” has landed firmly in the Top 20.  This month is arguably the most important in Morgan’s career, with his first album release with BNA, That’s Why, bowing on October 21, followed on October 25 by his formal induction into the Grand Ole Opry.  In a conversation with Country Universe, Morgan explains his move to BNA Records, the making of his new album and his feelings on the Opry invitation. This spring, it was announced that you’d be leaving independent label Broken Bow Records to join Joe Galante and his Read More

A Conversation with Patty Loveless

September 12, 2008 // 34 Comments

After a three year absence from the country music scene, a revived Patty Loveless has arrived with a brand new album featuring her versions of country classics called Sleepless Nights. An appropriate title, considering Loveless has endured the death of her mother, mother-in-law and the illness of her brother during that stretch of inactivity. But these hard times have moved Loveless to give some of the most heart-rending performances of her career, and in a phone interview from her home in Cartersville, Georgia, she tells Country Universe about her doubts of returning to the music business, her dreams for the next phase of her career and her desire to spread the gospel of traditional country music. Since 2005’s Dreaming My Dreams, you’ve kept a rather low profile except for a few guest appearances. Give us a glimpse of your life in the last three years and why this was the Read More

A Conversation With Suzy Bogguss

August 29, 2007 // 5 Comments

Earlier today, I had the opportunity to talk with award-winning singer-songwriter Suzy Bogguss, who has a new album being released on September 4. Sweet Danger is a jazz-flavored project that showcases her trademark vocals in a brand new setting. As with my earlier interview with Pam Tillis, what starts off as a formal interview becomes more of a conversation about her music, in addition to some fantastic anecdotes along the way about everything from working with Chet Atkins to a special favor done by Kathy Mattea on her behalf…on the South Lawn of the White House! Look for a review of Sweet Danger as the release date nears. You can stream the entire album at her website now. A Conversation with Suzy Bogguss I thought it was cool that the name of the album was Sweet Danger, because the music is very sweet and laid-back, but you go into some Read More

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