Category Archives: News

Dolly Parton’s Video Diary on Michael Jackson

I certainly didn’t expect to create a third Country Universe post on Michael Jackson, but longtime readers know that this site would enter an extended period of mourning should anything ever happen to Dolly Parton.

She posted a video diary today about Jackson’s death. As usual, she radiates humanity and warmth. Those who are fortunate enough to have Parton as a character witness on judgment day should count their lucky stars!

H/T: Mandi Bierly @ PopWatch

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George Strait Goes Platinum…Again

george-straitGeorge Strait’s Troubadour has been certified platinum, his 33rd album to reach that sales mark.

How rare is this accomplishment? He trails only Elvis Presley (45) and The Beatles (39) among all recording artists.

Strait’s nearest country competitors are Alabama (20), Reba McEntire (19), Kenny Rogers (19) and Garth Brooks (16).

George Strait is one of those artists that I buy every album of. I remember being amazed how many albums he already had released when I became a fan in the nineties.  It’s good to see him still going strong.

How many Strait albums do you own? What other artists do you buy every release from?

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2009 Americana Music Association Awards Nominees Announced

The nominations for the 8th Annual Americana Music Association Awards have  been announced:

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Real Animal, by ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO
Written in Chalk, by BUDDY & JULIE MILLER
Jason Isbell & The 40 Unit, by JASON ISBELL & THE 40 UNIT
Midnight At The Movies, by JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE

ARTIST OF THE YEAR
ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO
BUDDY MILLER
JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE
RAUL MALO

INSTRUMENTALIST OF THE YEAR
BUDDY MILLER
GURF MORLIX
JERRY DOUGLAS
SAM BUSH

NEW & EMERGING ARTIST
BAND OF HEATHENS
BELLEVILLE OUTFIT
JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE
SARAH BORGES

SONG OF THE YEAR
“Chalk,” written by JULIE MILLER, performed by BUDDY MILLER & PATTY GRIFFIN
“Country Love” by the GOURDS
“Homeland Refugee,” by JOE ELY, JIMMIE DALE GILMORE, and BUTCH HANCOCK, performed by the FLATLANDERS
“Rattlin’ Bones” by KASEY CHAMBERS & SHANE NICHOLSON, performed by KASEY CHAMBERS & SHANE NICHOLSON
“Sex And Gasoline,” by RODNEY CROWELL, performed by RODNEY CROWELL

DUO GROUP OF THE YEAR
BUDDY & JULIE MILLER
FLATLANDERS
KASEY CHAMBERS & SHANE NICHOLSON
RECKLESS KELLY

The awards will be given out at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville on September 17. Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale will serve as hosts.

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Stagecoach Festival: <em>Your Call</em>

indioIt has finally cooled off here in Southern California, so I'm headed out to the Stagecoach Festival in Indio, California this weekend, April 25-26! The country cousin of Coachella, Stagecoach is now in its third year and will be playing host to nearly 40 acts, including Reba McEntire, Brad Paisley, Little Big Town, Lady Antebellum, Darius Rucker, Kenny Chesney, Zac Brown Band and Miranda Lambert.

I'm excited for the festival, particularly because it hosts a mix of country music, from mainstream country to bluegrass, folk, roots rock and alt-country.  With three different stages – appropriately named “Mane,” “Palomino” and “Mustang” –  set on the beautiful Empire Polo fields in Indio, the Festival provides a fantastic opportunity to check out the entire gamut of styles and personalities in country music.

This year, Stagecoach is featuring the following artists:

> Miranda Lambert

  • Lady Antebellum
  • Zac Brown Band
  • Randy Houser
  • Charlie Daniels Band
  • Reverend Horton Heat
  • Kevin Costner & Modern West
  • Lynn Anderson
  • The Sacred Cowboys
  • Maxim Ludwig and the Santa Fe Seven
  • John Linn Band
  • Earl Scruggs
  • Doyle Lawson
  • The Infamous Stringdusters
  • Chris Stuart and Back Country
  • Waddie Mitchell
  • Dale Watson
  • Jim Lauderdale
  • Knitters
  • Poco
  • Pure Prairie League
  • Jerry Jeff Walker
  • The Duhks
  • James Intveld
  • Hot Club of Cowtown
  • Ralph Stanley
  • Ricky Scaggs
  • Peter Rowan
  • Greensky Bluegrass
  • I'm setting out to review as many of the performances at Stagecoach for Country Universe as possible, but I recognize that it may be hard to hear every single act.  So, I am asking you guys, the readers, to help me out:

    Which five (5) acts performing at Stagecoach do you most want to read about here at Country Universe? Any burning questions you want answered?

    Thanks!

    Anyone else headed to Stagecoach?

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