• NEWS & NOTES: LBT, Luke, Eric, Sam, Darius, Chris, Alan

    Little Big Town will perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Wednesday (March 1st), followed by The Talk on March 14th.

    Luke Bryan will perform on The Tonight  Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Thursday (March 2nd).

    Eric Church and Sam Hunt, along with Jason Aldean, will headline the 4th Annual Route 91 Harvest Festival September 29th – October 1st at Nevada’s Las Vegas Village. Tickets go on sale Friday (March 3rd).

    Luke Bryan, Darius Rucker, Chris Stapleton and Alan Jackson are scheduled to perform during this year’s Tortuga Music Festival in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The three-day concert event will take place April 7th – 9th and will also feature such artists as Brett Eldredge, Kenny Chesney, Maren Morris, Dustin Lynch, Brett Young, Chris Lane and many more.

  • VALENTINE’S DAY AUDIO 2017: AJ, Billy, Canaan, Dierks, Eric, Josh, Lauren, LBT, Luke

    Each year on February 14th, many people exchange cards, candy, gifts or flowers with their special someone. The day of romance we call Valentine’s Day is named for a Christian martyr and dates back to the 5th century.

    Over 150 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second-most popular greeting-card-giving occasion. (This total excludes packaged kids valentines for classroom exchanges.) (Source: Hallmark research)

    2.2 million marriages take place in the United States annually, which breaks down to more than 6,000 a day.

    Tuesday is Valentine’s Day (February 14th), and we’ve got some thoughts and feelings more about love, romance and marriage from several of your favorite country artists. Some are new and some have become our favorites over the years. Which country stars are romantic? Which ones aren’t? Which ones have a good reason to celebrate the holiday that’s all about love?

    Audio / Alan Jackson talks about his love for wife, Denise, over the years.


    AJ (Valentine’s Day) OC: …continue to. :24

    “We got a lot of history together now, and we’re happier than we’ve ever been. So, she’s still beautiful, and she’s always inspired songs. I mean, one of my early hits was a song called ‘I’d Love You All Over Again,’ I wrote for her for our 10th anniversary. I mean, there’s been a zillion songs that have pieces of our good days and bad days inspired, and they continue to.”

    Audio / Billy Currington recalls his first real Valentine’s Day.


    Billy Currington (Valentine’s Day memory) OC: …took off running. :21
    “Yeah, I remember my first girlfriend. I was in first or second grade, but anyway, I remember it was Valentine’s Day and your mom going, ‘You’ve got to give your girlfriend something, and you’ve got to go give it to her.’ I’ll never forget — we got her a box of chocolates or whatever it was. I remember going down to her classroom and knocking on the door, getting her to come to the door. I remember handing it to her, and then I took off running.”

    Audio / Canaan Smith says he tries to show his wife how special she is every day.


    Canaan Smith (Valentine’s Day) OC: …get lucky. :25
    “I bet I’m just like 99.9% of the rest of the men in the world who could really care less about that holiday. I want my wife to feel special, so I’m gonna take part in it. I’m gonna do my part to make her feel special and loved, but is it necessary? Shouldn’t we do that every day? I mean, it kinda is just another way to get a bunch of money out of us, but oh well. We’ll go see a movie or something. Maybe I’ll get lucky.”


    Audio / Dierks Bentley explains the realities of Valentine’s Day.


    Dierks Bentley (Valentine’s Day realities) OC: …that’s awesome. :53
    “I’m gonna be the voice of truth and honesty for Valentine’s Day for a lot of the guys out there listening and for some of the girls listening, as well too. You may like this; you may not, but Valentine’s Day is a really difficult day for guys. When you’re single, it’s stressful for like a month leading up to it, and inevitably, you do something wrong. You don’t get the wrong thing or you say too much, and she’s wanting to get engaged faster than you want to get engaged. I don’t know. It’s just a very stressful holiday. I’m at a time in my life where I got a five-year-old, a three-year-old and a zero-year-old, and we’re just really trying to survive on a day-to-day basis. I mean, we get about four hours of sleep, and we’re literally in survival mode. So, I think there should be a hall pass for guys in that phase of their life. It doesn’t take much at this stage for us to get excited. A dinner alone is heaven. I mean, if we can just have a dinner and a glass of wine, that’s awesome.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley says so far his ultimate romantic gesture was when he proposed to his wife, Cassidy, and with three children in the house, it’s a little hard to get away together.


    Dierks Bentley (Valentine’s peak) OC: …48-hour party, you know? [chuckles]
    “I kind of peaked when I dropped the engagement ring on her and surprised her with that and took her to Mexico and eloped. I spiked early. I peaked early. Now we’re in our eighth year. I need to find something special to do, but we keep having kids. It’s like, we can’t be away from them. We’re gonna find a week when they’re all in school and everything is set and we’ve got somebody. We have no family in town. We just have some folks that we really count on. When we get everyone locked in place, we’re gonna go somewhere for like two days and get away and have like a two-day, 48-hour party, you know?” [chuckles]

    Audio / Eric Church says his wife, Katherine, loves him in spite of everything.


    Eric Church (Valentine’s) OC: …love song is. :18 “True love to me is when you love a person in spite of all their fallibilities, and for me, I have a lot of ‘em. I’m definitely at times hard to love, and that’s what’s great about Katherine and the way she loves me. She loves me in spite of those things and really for those things.”

    Audio / Josh Turner says his wife would call him a romantic, but now that they have four children, it takes a bit of work to make time for each other.


    Josh Turner (Romantic) OC: …long time to come. :26
    “If you ask my wife Jennifer if I was a romantic, she would definitely say, ‘Yes,’ but she knows that sometimes my hectic schedule and our busy lifestyles can kind of interfere with the romantic side of things. But we do try to make efforts towards being together and having adult conversations and taking time away from the children and doing things that husbands and wives do, so we’ll definitely try to continue that for a long time to come.”

    Audio / Lauren Alaina recalls her first, and potentially disastrous, Valentine’s Day with her longtime boyfriend, Alex.


    Lauren Alaina (Valentine’s Day) OC: …pretty embarrassing. 1:51
    “I think my first Valentine’s Day with Alex, I was trying to be super cute and cook him a Valentine’s Day dinner. I was 18 at the time, and I’d just moved into this brand new apartment in Chattanooga. I was trying to get used to not living with my parents before I moved to Nashville, so I did like six months in Chattanooga in an apartment. And [giggles] my mom makes these really great mashed potatoes, which I’ve modified the recipe, but they’re delicious and I wanted to make him these potatoes, because I knew I could make these potatoes. Well, I did not grow up with a very updated kitchen, so I didn’t have a [garbage] disposal, it was very new to me. So, I peeled the bag of potatoes and put the potato peels in to the sink and tried to use the disposal and it broke it before he got there. Annnd, I turned the water on, and I was baking chicken and I was cooking broccoli and mashed potatoes, and just turned the water on and then I forgot I had the water on, so I overflowed the kitchen sink with the potato peels, and it looked like something died in my sink and my sink was like spitting it up. It was horrible. I was panicking and trying to get it all cleaned up before he got there, and he knocked in the middle of it, like knocked on the door. He was early, of course. He’s always early, and he freaking knocked. I had like potato peels flying through the air, my potatoes were boiling over. I was still boiling the potatoes. I was running behind and he was running early, so it was just crazy. But, we’ve had some great Valentine’s. Last Valentine’s, he cooked for me and everything was smooth, so maybe he should be the cook. Uh, I’m a great cook, I just was trying to use a disposal for the first time, and that was pretty embarrassing.”

    Audio / Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild and Jimi Westbrook had a chemistry performing together, but it wasn’t until they each found themselves single…at the same time…that sparks flew romantically. The pair, who wed in 2006, have a son, Elijah.


    Little Big Town (Jimi & Karen fell in love) OC: (Kimberly) …to be together. :48 JIMI: “We were in the band a long time before there was ever anything which is interesting. I think there was always something underlying there that we were kind of trying to ignore. And then when the opportunity came, when all of us, ended up single kind of at the same time, a very strange turn of events for the band in a lot of different ways. And those feelings, you were able to come out with them finally. It was like, we’re single. Let’s get together. And, you know, she has a beautiful heart and she’s absolutely gorgeous and I just love her dearly.”

    PHILLIP: “Get a room!” [laughs]

    KIMBERLY: “They’re a perfect match. They really are. They were meant to be together.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan says Valentine’s Day is for him and his wife, Caroline.


    Luke Bryan (Valentine’s Day) OC: …full day. :11
    “Well, I mean Valentine’s Day is, it’s kinda me and Caroline’s day just to go and just being with one another for a full day.”


  • Mrs. Ruth Musick “Mama Ruth” Jackson – Mother of Alan Jackson – Has Died Beloved Family Matriarch Was 86.

    IMG_5071 IMG_5072

    Mrs. Ruth Jackson – known to her family, friends and country music fans the world over simply as “Mama Ruth” – died Saturday morning, January 7, peacefully at her home in Newnan, Georgia. Mrs. Jackson became a celebrated part of son Alan Jackson’s career and life story as the inspiration behind some of his fans’ favorite music. Mama Ruth was 86.

    Born April 2, 1930 in Lowell, Georgia, Mama Ruth at the young age of 16 married the love of her life, Joseph Eugene “Daddy Gene” Jackson, in 1946. Their marriage was blessed by five children – daughters Diane, Cathy, Carol, Connie and son Alan. Mama Ruth is survived by all, as well as by 12 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren. Her beloved husband Eugene passed 17 years ago, in January of 2000.

    Childhood memories of his mother have factored into many of Alan Jackson’s songs over the years. It was Mama Ruth who inspired Jackson’s Precious Memories, a collection of gospel hymns that was originally created as a Mother’s Day gift to her with no intention of ever being made into a commercial release. Jackson’s second Christmas album, Let It Be Christmas, was also inspired by Mama Ruth’s desire and request to hear her son record some of the holiday’s traditional classics. Alan also told the story of his parents’ early years as a couple in “Home,” describing their house built around an old tool shed…the place Mama Ruth called home for 70 years until the day she died.


    “My mama raised five children – four girls, and there was me.
    She found her strength in faith in God and a love of family.
    She never had a social life; home was all she knew
    Except the time she took a job to pay a bill or two.”
    (Lyrics from “Home,” by Alan Jackson)


    More than 20 years later, those words still describe Mama Ruth as perfectly as they did the first time he shared them with us. Jackson’s frequent references to her and her occasional appearance at awards shows and events made Mama Ruth a beloved figure to Jackson’s fans. It was a role she embraced, greeting those who frequently sought out her son’s childhood home, inviting them to take a photo on the front porch or offering them a glass of iced tea as she would any guest in her home.

    To read more about the life of Mrs. Ruth Musick “Mama Ruth” Jackson, go to www.McKoon.com.

  • CHRISTMAS 2016: Alan Jackson

    Alan Jackson is the patriarch of a family of five, including his wife Denise and his three daughters Mattie, Ali and Dani. Even though his children are grown, his family still stick to their Christmas traditions.

    “Christmas is pretty traditional. We don’t let anybody open any presents until Christmas morning,” says Alan. “We don’t let them get up on their own and take off, you know, everybody has to wait and kind of get situated, and maybe have a cup of coffee, and then we start all of the regular Christmas morning activities, opening presents, taking pictures and video. We have music going, you know, I try to keep Christmas music going in the background. I like to turn that on before I let them come down to the tree and everything.”

    Alan released his second holiday album, Let It Go, in 2002.

    Audio / Alan Jackson talks about the holiday traditions of the Jackson house.


    Alan Jackson (Christmas traditions) OC: …everything. :30
    “Christmas is pretty traditional. We don’t let anybody open any presents until Christmas morning, after Santa Claus comes. We don’t let them get up on their own and take off, you know, everybody has to wait and kind of get situated, and maybe have a cup of coffee, and then we start all of the regular Christmas morning activities, opening presents, taking pictures and video. We have music going, you know, I try to keep Christmas music going in the background. I like to turn that on before I let them come down to the tree and everything.”

    Audio / Even with all the celebrating, Alan Jackson doesn’t lose sight of the real meaning of Christmas.


    Alan Jackson (meaning of Christmas) OC: …lovely Christmas. :20
    “Always try to remember Jesus’ birthday, and just the whole thing, and have a wonderful, big meal, almost like Thanksgiving four weeks later. We have the same, pretty much – turkey, dressing, all the same kind of things. Sometimes we have family members in Tennessee, and sometimes just us or friends, and we always go home to Georgia prior to that, you know…pretty standard, lovely Christmas.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson talks about the Christmas music he likes.


    AJ (Christmas music) OC: …at Christmas. :15
    “I love the, you know, when we listen to Christmas songs, we put on the old ones that you grew up with, and the classic recordin’s and…from Gene Autry to Nat King [Cole], and you know, all the guys and Bing Crosby and everybody. But songs that we like to listen to at Christmas.”


    Alan Jackson is taking his 25-plus years of hits and fan-favorites on the road in the new year, as he embarks on his 2017 HONKY TONK HIGHWAY TOUR. Lee Ann Womack will be the special guest on select shows.

    Alan’s HONKY TONK HIGHWWAY TOUR will find the country music icon “keepin’ it country” as he always has…performing hits that have gained him legions of longtime fans, as well as songs that continue to draw new crowds as a younger generation discovers his music. Jackson’s repertoire withstands the test of time; it has impacted a host of artists who cite Jackson as an influence. It’s a night a real country music when Jackson comes to town – fans will hear the songs they love from the man who wrote them and made them famous, from his debut hit, “Here in The Real World” through signature songs such as “Chattahoochee,” “Drive” and “Gone Country”…the career-defining “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)” and poignant “Remember When”… party anthems “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere” and “Good Time”…and many more.

    Jackson’s 2017 tour will find the superstar playing arenas and amphitheaters, as well as some of the biggest annual festivals and multi-day events on the country music calendar. Special guest Lee Ann Womack joins Jackson on select dates (with several more to be announced). As a Jackson duet partner of long-standing, Lee Ann has appeared on several of Alan’s albums, and the two have shared a number of stages, including the Grand Ole Opry and Carnegie Hall. Lee Ann also honored Jackson at the 2014 CMT Music Awards when he received his Impact Award. Fans will hear hits spanning Lee Ann’s career to date, as well as brand new and unreleased songs.

    Tickets and information for all of Jackson’s HONKY TONK HIGHWAY TOUR dates are available at alanjackson.com, where you can find information about Alan, his tour schedule, music and more. VIP tickets and packages are also available for most shows.

    Jackson’s most-recent studio album, Angels and Alcohol, topped the charts when it was released…and he’s the subject of a best-selling, three-disc box set, Genuine: The Alan Jackson Story.

    Alan Jackson’s touring history has taken him across America and to places far beyond as his music gained him fans around the globe. In 2017, he’ll continue the tradition of playing that music for people far and wide as he travels the HONKY TONK HIGHWAY to a city near you. 

    (partial listing – more dates to be announced/added) 
    Friday, January 20 – Tulsa, OK (Paradise Cove) **
    Friday, January 27 – Pensacola, FL (Pensacola Bay Center) **++
    Saturday, January 28 – Atlanta (Duluth), GA (Infinite Energy Center) **++
    Saturday, February 25 – Laughlin, NV (Laughlin Events Center) ^^
    Friday, March 10 – Durant, OK (Choctaw Casino Resort) **
    Friday/Saturday, March 24/25 – Rancho Mirage, CA (Aqua Caliente Casino) **
    Saturday, April 8 – St. Augustine, FL (St. Augustine Amphitheatre) ~~++
    Sunday, April 9 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL (Tortuga Music Festival) **
    Saturday, May 27 – Forest City, IA (Tree Town Country Music Festival) **
    Friday, June 23 – North Platte, NE (Nebraskaland Days) **
    Saturday, June 24 – Manhattan, KS (Country Stampede) **
    Saturday, October 28 – Minneapolis, MN (Target Center) **
    **Date is already onsale
    ^^Tickets onsale Friday, December 9
    ~~Tickets onsale Friday, December 16
    ++with special guest Lee Ann Womack
    The man from rural Newnan, GA, who claims he is just a “singer of simple songs,” has sold nearly 60-million albums worldwide, ranks as one of the 10 best-selling male vocalists of all-time in all genres, and was recently listed as one of the Top 10 Country Artists of All-Time by Billboard. He has released more than 60 singles – registering 50 Top Ten hits and 35 #1s (including 26 Billboard chart-toppers). He has earned more than 150 music industry awards – including 18 Academy of Country Music Awards, 16 Country Music Association Awards, a pair of Grammys and ASCAP’s Founders and Golden Note Awards. Jackson received the first-ever ASCAP Heritage Award in 2014 having earned the title of most-performed country music songwriter-artist of ASCAP’s first 100 years. He is a member of the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry.
    Alan Jackson is one of the most successful and respected singer-songwriters in music. He is in the elite company of Paul McCartney and John Lennon among songwriters who’ve written more than 20 songs that they’ve recorded and taken to the top of the charts. Jackson is one of the best-selling artists since the inception of SoundScan, ranking alongside the likes of Eminem and Metallica. Jackson’s current album, Angels and Alcohol, topped the country album charts when it was released last summer. He is also the subject of a new box set, Genuine: The Alan Jackson Story, available now. 
  • CHRISTMAS/HOLIDAY LINERS 2017: AJ, Billy, Brothers O, Canaan, Clare, Darius, David, Dierks, Easton, Church, Paslay, Gary, Strait, Pardi, Josh, Kacey, Keith, Kip, Lady A, Lauren, LBT Luke, Sam, Shania, TBP, Toby, etc.

    Holiday liners from UMG Nashville artists, including Alan Jackson, Billy Currington, Brothers Osborne, Canaan Smith, Clare Dunn, Darius Rucker, David Nail, Dierks Bentley, Easton Corbin, Eric Church, Eric Paslay, Gary Allan, George Strait, Jon Pardi, Josh Turner, Kacey Musgraves, Keith Urban, Kip Moore, Lady Antebellum, Lauren Alaina, Little Big Town, Luke Bryan, Sam Hunt, Shania Twain, The Band Perry, Toby Keith and many more!


    Audio / LINER AJ (Christmas)


    “Hi! This is Alan Jackson, and I’m wishing y’all a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Billy Currington (Happy Holiday Season)


    “Hi! Billy Currington here, wishing you and your family a safe and Happy Holiday Season.”

    Audio / LINER Brothers Osborne (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is T.J., and I’m John, and we are Brothers Osborne, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Canaan Smith (Christmas)


    “Hey! What’s up guys? I’m Canaan Smith, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Clare Dunn (Christmas)


    “Hey! What’s up? This is Clare Dunn, hoping you have a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Darius Rucker (Christmas)


    “Hey y’all! What’s up? This is Darius Rucker, wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER David Nail (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is David Nail, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Dierks Bentley (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is Dierks Bentley, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Dierks Bentley (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey everybody! It’s Dierks Bentley, wishing you a very Happy Holiday season.”

    Audio / LINER Easton Corbin (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey everybody! This is Easton Corbin, wishing you and your family a Happy Holidays.”


    Audio / LINER Easton Corbin (Merry Christmas)


    “Hey everybody! This is Easton Corbin, wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Eric Church (Christmas)


    “Hey everybody! It’s Eric Church, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Eric Paslay (Christmas)


    “Hi! I’m Eric Paslay. Hope you have a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Gary Allan (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is Gary Allan. Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER George Strait (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey everybody! This is George Strait, wishing you and your family a Happy Holiday season.”

    Audio / LINER Jon Pardi (Merry Christmas)


    “Hey! This is Jon Pardi, wishing you a Merry Christmas!”

    Audio / LINER Josh Turner (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey! I’m Josh Turner, wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday season.”

    Audio / LINER Kacey Musgraves (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is Kacey Musgraves, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Keith Urban (Christmas)


    “Hi folks, this is Keith Urban, wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Keith Urban (Holiday season)


    “Hi everyone, this is Keith Urban, wishing you and all your family the very best this holiday season.”

    [[audio-player- 21]]

    Audio / LINER Kip Moore (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey y’all, it’s Kip Moore. Happy Holidays!”

    Audio / LINER Lady A (Christmas)


    “Hey everybody! We’re Lady Antebellum, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Lady A (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey everybody! We are Lady Antebellum. Happy Holidays.”

    Audio / LINER Lauren Alaina (Christmas)


    “Hey! This is Lauren Alaina, wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER LBT (Christmas)


    “Hey! We’re Little Big Town, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER LBT (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey! We’re Little Big Town. Happy Holidays!”

    Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Christmas)


    “Hey! It’s Luke Bryan, wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey! It’s Luke Bryan. Happy Holidays!”

    Audio / LINER Mickey Guyton (Christmas)


    “Hey! It’s Mickey Guyton, wishing you a Merry Christmas.”

    [[audio-player- 31]]

    Audio / LINER Sam Hunt (Happy Holidays)


    “Hey everybody! I’m Sam Hunt. Happy Holidays!”

    Audio / LINER Shania Twain (Christmas)


    “Hi, this is Shania Twain, wishing you a very Merry Christmas.”

    [[audio-player- 34]]

    Audio / LINER Toby Keith (politically correct holiday liner)


    “Hey! It’s Toby Keith with the gift of politically correctness. Happy Holidays. Merry Christmas. Happy Hanukkah, or Bah Humbug. Whatever way you celebrate, I hope it’s a good one.”


    The Thanksgiving holiday tradition traces its origins to a 1621 celebration at Plymouth, in the state that’s now known as Massachusetts. The 1621 Plymouth feast and thanksgiving was prompted by a good harvest. While initially, the Plymouth colony did not have enough food to feed half of the 102 colonists, the Wampanoag Native Americans helped the Pilgrims by providing seeds and teaching them to fish. The practice of holding an annual harvest festival like this did not become a regular affair in New England until the late 1660s. People now celebrate the holiday by giving thanks for their blessings over the past year, as well as feasting on turkey and other festive goodies.

    Thanksgiving Day is Thursday, November 24th, and most people will be enjoying time with their friends and families, including some of your favorite country stars, such as Alan Jackson, Brothers Osborne, Canaan Smith, Clare Dunn, Darius Rucker, David Nail, Dierks Bentley, Easton Corbin, Eric Church, Eric Paslay, Josh Turner, Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Mickey Guyton, Sam Hunt and more. They share their thoughts, memories and favorite Thanksgiving dishes.

    Audio / Alan Jackson talks about his favorite Thanksgiving dish.


    AJ (Thanksgiving) OC: …enjoy it. :19
    “My favorite Thanksgiving dish would be the homemade dressin’ that we, cornbread-based kind of dressin’ that we always have with turkey. That recipe is a kind of a combination of my mama, and Denise has taken it and perfected it over the years, so that me and my children really enjoy it.”

    Audio / Brothers Osborne’s John Osborne talks about their annual Misfits Thanksgiving dinner.


    Brothers Osborne (misfits Thanksgiving) OC: …going home. :45
    “What we’ve done the past several years is because it’s so hard to go home, we would have what we call the Misfit Thanksgiving dinner, and all the people in Nashville who aren’t able to go home to their families, we would just invite them over to our house and have a big potluck style Thanksgiving dinner. We’ll take like a couple of tables and throw them together and throw some sheets on it just to make it look nice. It’s a very redneck display of like tableware, because all the plates don’t match and the forks and knives don’t match, but we don’t care. People will bring wine, and at the end of the day, we’ll probably have 12-15 people all sitting at dinner together that weren’t able to go home with their families, and just enjoy it with friends. It’s been really fun. Definitely a lot less stress than going home.”

    Audio / Canaan Smith says his favorite Thanksgiving dish is pumpkin pie.


    Canaan Smith (pumpkin pie) OC: …Thanksgiving. :14
    “Pumpkin pie is where it’s at. My mom makes the best. She got it from her mom, my Nanny. It’s so good. It’s made from scratch. Everything about it, it’s just mouthwatering. I love it. I can’t get enough. If I could get fat, it’d be from pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / Clare Dunn talks about her favorite Thanksgiving side dish.


    Clare Dunn (Thanksgiving dish) OC: …like hers. :21
    “I think my favorite Thanksgiving dish [is] my mom makes the best mashed potatoes in the world. I mean, they’re crazy. They’re like garlic and butter and all the good stuff, so that’s probably my favorite Thanksgiving dish. Oh, and she makes great stuffing too, and I’m not a stuffing person, but I like hers.”

    Audio / Darius Rucker talks about his favorite part of Thanksgiving.


    Darius Rucker (favorite part of Thanksgiving) OC: …my family. :17
    “My favorite part of Thanksgiving is easy – it’s food. It’s eating. It’s hanging out with family and getting some great food, ‘cause that’s really what Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving is about giving thanks for all of the great things you’ve got, and I always give thanks for the greatest thing I’ve got and that’s my family.”


    Audio / Darius Rucker talks about what he's most thankful for.


    Darius Rucker (Thanksgiving) OC: …alive. :17
    “The main thing I’m thankful for is my family, no doubt about that. Thanksgiving is about family first, you know either getting together going to New Jersey and getting together with family or in Charleston and getting together with my family and just cooking and eating and sitting around talking and remembering and being thankful for where we are and that we’re all still alive.”

    Audio / David Nail talks about his favorite Thanksgiving dish.


    David Nail (Thanksgiving dish) OC: …spoonful. :33
    “My favorite Thanksgiving dish was my grandmother’s macaroni and cheese. There probably wasn’t anything elaborate about it. It was probably the cheapest macaroni and cheese that money can buy, but for some reason it was always extra special, and she would also add extra cheese to it for me. My cousin Matt and I would have many, many fights about who would get the last spoonful.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley, who is thankful for his wife, two daughters and son, talks about his Thanksgiving must-have! It’s an oldie, but a goodie!


    Dierks Bentley (Thanksgiving must-have) OC: …for Thanksgiving. :34
    “You gotta have a big turkey. Thanksgiving is not possible without a turkey. We cook it traditionally, but when we’re in, a couple of Thanksgivings ago, we were here in Nashville, we did the whole fry the turkey up, and it was great. It just tasted so good; all those juices get locked in there, and I love that too. You really can’t, to me, cook a turkey wrong. I’m gonna eat it any way, and I have over the years. Trust me, I’ve played a lot of county and state fairs, where I’ve seen gigantic turkey legs, you know, I’ve had the flat meat. I’ve done turkey every way you could do it. I’m pretty good any way you want to cook it up, but you’ve got to have a turkey for Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / Easton Corbin talks about spending Thanksgiving with family.


    Easton (Thanksgiving) OC: …my grandma’s. :33
    “Having family and being able to spend that quality time with them and obviously, the opportunity to do what I do. But absolutely during that time, being able to spend that time with family and your loved ones. We used to always go to my grandma’s, that’s Christmas and Thanksgiving. We’d go there for the big meal. I don’t get to go back much. A lot of times I’ll stay up [in Nashville] for Thanksgiving, and then go down during Christmas, but we’d always go to my grandma’s.”

    Audio / Eric Church says he’s thankful for his family as well as for his fans.


    Eric Church (Thanksgiving) OC: …want to do it. :23
    “A couple of things. I’m thankful for my family and great health. And I’m thankful for from a career standpoint, I’m very thankful for the success we’ve had lately. I’m thankful for what the fans have done. I mean there’s a lot of stuff to be thankful for in that regard. And I’m thankful that I was given the opportunity to do it my own way. I’m thankful that I’m going to get to keep doing this and do it the way that I want to do it.”

    Audio / Eric Paslay talks about his favorite Thanksgiving memories.


    Eric Paslay (Thanksgiving) OC: …too much. :05
    “My best Thanksgiving memory, I think, is just hanging out with family, watching football and eating too much!”

    Audio / Josh Turner shares his favorite Thanksgiving side dish.


    Josh Turner (fave side dish) OC: …’em myself. [laughs] :24
    “Uh, deviled eggs! [laughs] Where I’m from in South Carolina, I don’t think I’ve tasted a bad deviled egg. It’s like everybody has their own twist on it, but they’re all good, but I always loved it when my mama made ‘em. I’m learning as I get older, making deviled eggs is no easy task. It’s more complicated than it looks, and so that’s probably why I never made ‘em myself.” [laughs]

    Audio / Keith Urban gives thanks for many things, including his wife and two daughters.


    Keith (Thanksgiving) OC: …for me. :21
    “Thankful that, well, my marriage is just, it’s life-giving, not just life-changing, it’s been life-giving for me. And from there, we created life, and that’s just beautiful, absolutely beautiful. And the effect that all of that has had in my work, has given life to it too, given it a sense of purpose and really deepened the experience for me.”

    Audio / Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley talks about the annual eating contest he and his two brothers – Josh and John -- have over the Thanksgiving holiday.


    Lady A (Charles-Thanksgiving eating contest) OC: …five pounds! :25
    “One of my most memorable Thanksgiving memories was probably the first year that me and my two brothers decided to start our annual eating contest where we ate throughout the whole day. We started that morning and weighed ourselves and at the very end of the night, we weighed ourselves out and all three of us equally gained five pounds. I wish we had a more accurate scale to decide the winner, but we all tied. Five pounds!”

    Audio / Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott describes her favorite Thanksgiving dish.


    Lady A (Hillary-Thanksgiving food) OC: …ever tasted. :12
    “So, my favorite Thanksgiving food would have to be my grandmother’s sweet potato casserole. There’s just something she puts in it — probably all the love – that makes it better than anything I’ve ever tasted.”

    Audio / The members of Little Big Town love Thanksgiving since they get time off to be with their families.


    LBT (Thanksgiving) 2 OC: (Kimberly) …and eat. :31
    KIMBERLY: “Thanksgiving—we love Thanksgiving, ‘cause we get to be with our families and we don’t often get to spend time with our families, our extended families, until the holidays. I love being around the table with my family and talking and laughing and cooking and eating…” JIMI: “And eating and eating and eating and eating…” PHILLIP: “The laughter around the eating, the good cheer, the celebration, the music…” JIMI: “The eating, going taking a nap, then coming back and eating.” KIMBERLY: “Go to bed with a full belly, take a nap, and then get up and eat.”

    Audio / Mickey Guyton talks about one of her favorite Thanksgiving traditions.


    Mickey Guyton (Thanksgiving traditions) OC: …Thanksgiving traditions. :17
    “One of my Thanksgiving traditions is playing charades after Thanksgiving dinner. I’m not the most competitive person in the world, but as soon as you put some Charades in the picture, I am crazy, and you will definitely want to be on my team if we’re playing Charades. I’m just saying. So, that’s one of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions.”

    Audio / Mickey Guyton reveals her favorite Thanksgiving dish.


    Mickey Guyton (favorite Thanksgiving dish) OC: …both so much! :39
    “My favorite Thanksgiving dish that has to, has to, has to be at Thanksgiving dinner is dessert. Dessert is my favorite Thanksgiving dish. I mean, it doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it’s sweet. My mom actually makes an Italian cream cake that’s absolutely awesome. It’s homemade, and the entire family, that’s the first thing to go at Thanksgiving dinner. And my Grandma D, she makes a pecan pie that is awesome. She taught me how to make them when I was little, and I just love them, and that’s the other thing that I look forward to at Thanksgiving dinner, and I love them both so much!”

    Audio / Sam Hunt talks about his favorite Thanksgiving meal.


    Sam Hunt (Thanksgiving eats) OC: …glass of milk. :34
    “When I pile my plate up, it’s mostly turkey and then I’ll put a little dressing on the side, and I’ll usually go ahead and grab my dessert on the first run [laughs] and have it ready before it all disappears. Those are the really the three things. It’s strange, but since I was very young, I’ve always loved drinking milk, my brothers too, we drank lots of milk. My cousins, who grew up down the road, they always looked at us funny when we wanted to drink milk with our Thanksgiving meal. They would have coke or whatever else. So, I still get turkey, dressing, a piece of pecan pie and a big ole glass of milk.”




    George Strait and Alan Jackson will perform together on tonight’s CMA Awards to celebrate the 50th Anniversary. The two have been friends for more than 20 years and have collaborated on the CMA Awards previously. The two teamed up in 1999 to perform “Murder on Music Row,” which happened to win an award for Vocal Event of the Year in 2000. And again in 2013 to pay tribute to the late George Jones by performing his song “He Stopped Loving Her Today.”

    Audio / George Strait talks about performing with his friend Alan Jackson on the CMA Awards.


    George Strait (CMA AJ performance) OC: …came out of it. :32
    “Well Alan has been one of my favorite people that I’ve met in the business since I’ve been in it.  I’ve met a lot of great people and Alan and I have become friends.  We just have.  I love his writing, his singing and we cut some things together before.  And so when all of this came about I called him and we talked about it and had our little heart to heart about everything.  And so this is kind of what came out of it.”


  • CMA AWARDS 50: Alan Jackson

    He’s been making music for just over 25 years…but in that time span, Alan Jackson has become one of the most-nominated and most-awarded artists in the 50-year history of the CMA Awards – while also providing country music fans with some of the annual event’s most memorable moments.

    Alan is a 16-time CMA Award winner…he’s been nominated 81 times, a record second only to his friend George Strait…and he’s one of only five artists to be named CMA Entertainer of the Year three or more times (the others are Strait, AlabamaGarth Brooks and Kenny Chesney). He earned his first CMA nominations – for Album, Single, Song of the Year and the Horizon Award – in 1990. Four years later, in 1995, he was crowned Entertainer of the Year for the first time. And, in 2002, he broke a record previously held by Merle Haggard (since 1970) when he made history by scoring 10 nominations – he would go on to win five, including his second Entertainer of the Year honor…and repeated in that category for a third time a year later.

    Along the way, Alan’s become a perennial favorite performer for fans, creating two of what are arguably the most memorable moments in the show’s history. In 1999, when friend and mentor George Jones was invited to perform but told he could only do an abbreviated version of his nominated hit, “Choices,” the legend refused to appear. Alan picked up the protest single-handedly, gesturing to his band moments into his own scheduled performance of “Pop-a-Top” and shifting directly into Jones’ hit song. A couple years later, as the nation was still reeling from the fresh wounds left by the terrorist attacks of 9-11 just two months earlier, Alan unveiled a never-before-heard song that had come to him in the middle of the night just days earlier. A healing nation found solace in the simple question, “Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning”…turning it into a defining moment in country and American music history.

    Alan will perform again as part of this year’s 50th Annual CMA Awards, and he’s one of the artists featured in the all-star “Forever Country” single created specifically to celebrate the CMAs 50th anniversary.

    The 50th Annual CMA Awards will broadcast live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena Wednesday (November 2nd) at 8pm ET on ABC.

    Audio / Alan Jackson recalls the first time he was named CMA Entertainer of the Year (in 1995).


    AJ CMA-50 01 OC: …for me. :32
    “Obviously, I was very proud and excited about it. But, at the same time, I almost felt like I wasn’t hardly qualified yet or something. I remember watching that show when I was still in Georgia, before I even hardly thought about being a singer, I guess. But, I don’t know – I just never thought about the Entertainer award up to that point that much. But I was in some good company and…I guess the first time was kind of a surprise for me.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson says it was an honor to be named CMA Entertainer of the Year…and it impacted his life and career.


    AJ CMMA-50 02 OC: …to wear.  :28
    “Within the industry and people that book concerts and, you know, the TV shows and all the thigs that go with the rest of your career, I think it does make a difference to have that title for a while. And it really – that’s…that’s pretty good to be in that small of company, and I definitely feel like it’s a…you know, it’s a badge that not a lot of people have had the opportunity to wear.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson recalls his decision to perform “Choices” for George Jones at the 1999 CMA Awards.


    AJ CMA-50  03 OC: …out there. :26
    “I hadn’t told anybody. Not even my manager…the band…anybody. When we walked out there, before we walked out to do – I was doing an old song ‘Pop-a-Top’ I had out – I told the band, ‘If I stop the song – if I raise my hand and stop the song in the middle of that song, y’all stop.’ I said, ‘I may do something different.’ That’s all I told ‘em. ‘Cause I didn’t want them to know. What I was worried about was if word got out, the CMA’d probably shut me down [and] wouldn’t let me go out there. And so, I had to sneak out there.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson still finds it hard to comprehend the impact his song, “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning),” has 15 years after he unveiled it on the 2001 CMA Awards.


    AJ CMA-50 04 OC: …like they did. :24
    “Even after it was a big hit and everybody was talking about it, I thought, ‘Well, I’ll perform this onstage for a few years in my show, and it’ll probably just go away after, you know, the memory of 9-11 gets less and less [fresh], and I think people won’t want to hear that.’ And I was completely wrong. ‘Cause it just seems like now I couldn’t do a show without  putting it in there. And people, they respond just like they did.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson reflects on 50 years of CMA Awards and country music.


    AJ CMA-50 05 OC: …in the world. :26
    “The interesting thing about country music to me is – just like this 50 year span we’re talking about – you’ve got artists that have been around forever and new artists. And even though the music’s changed…and gone back and forth and up and down over the years, there’s still a similar thread that runs through all of it about what they’re trying to write about and sing about. And the sounds have changed, but, you know, we’ve always had a devotion to our fans just the same as they have to us, you know. The best fans in the world.”

    Video / Alan Jackson CMA 50/50


    Alan Jackson released his Precious Memories Collection exclusively with Walmart on Friday (October 28th). The set includes his first Precious Memories album, Volume II and two previously unreleased songs.

    The two-disc collection features Precious Memories, Precious Memories Volume II, as well as, two previously unreleased songs – “It’s All About Him” inspired by Denise’s book of the same title and “That’s The Way” which Alan sang to Denise at their wedding.

    When asked about writing the song ‘It’s All About Him,’” Alan explained, “Inspired by Denise’s strength and ability [in writing her book], I sat down and wrote a song of the same title hoping to add musically to an already uplifting story.”

    Precious Memories was originally recorded as a Christmas gift for Jackson’s mother, and a handful of copies were shared with close friends. Prompted and urged by family and friends, Jackson agreed to make the music available to fans. Seven years later, Jackson and his wife Denise revisited the list of their favorite hymns they compiled for the first album and Jackson decided to release Precious Memories Volume II.  Both albums went on to sell a combined 2.3 million copies.

    DISC 1

    1. Blessed Assurance
    2. Softly And Tenderly
    3. I Love To Tell The Story
    4. When We All Get To Heaven
    5. ‘Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus
    6. In The Garden
    7. Are You Washed In The Blood?
    8. I’ll Fly Away
    9. What A Friend We Have In Jesus
    10. Standing On The Promises
    11. Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus
    12. Leaning On The Everlasting Arms
    13. The Old Rugged Cross
    14. How Great Thou Art
    15. I Want To Stroll Over Heaven With You

    DISC 2

    1. Amazing Grace
    2. He Lives
    3. Just As I Am
    4. Love Lifted Me
    5. O How I Love Jesus
    6. Only Trust Him
    7. There Is Power In The Blood
    8. Precious Memories
    9. Sweet Hour Of Prayer
    10. When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder
    11. Wherever He Leads I’ll Go
    12. It’s All About Him **
    13. That’s The Way **

    **New Songs

    Audio / Alan Jackson explained a few years ago why he chose to record and release Precious Memories Volume II.


    AJ (Precious Memories II) OC: …and simple. :34
    “It’s just really overwhelming how many people have enjoyed this album. So, of course, ever since I made the first one, they’re like, ‘When [are] you going to make another one?’ (laughs) That’s all I’ve heard now for…(laughs) ‘When [are] you going to make another one?’ We had so many songs, of course, that we didn’t get to do on the first one , but…and Denise sat down and helped me pick out some more this time, and…that’s where we’re at. I just…we tried to just go in and do it just like the first one – just heartfelt and simple.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson shares his thoughts on why the songs he recorded for Precious Memories Volume II endure and resonate with people.


    AJ (Precious Memories songs resonate) OC: …that sound. 1:03
    “They’re a lot like country songs. They’re memorable melodies, and they’re well-written subjects that appeal to common people. And I think just…when you really start listening to those songs, as a songwriter now I’m especially amazed at how good they are, you know, in the melodies. And even some of the melodies are similar, almost, to a country song. And I think that’s why I – one reason I love ‘em. And I think people that grew up in church, it’s…you know, it’s not unlike your young days in high school and whatever you listened to on the radio, you know? Those are songs that [when] you hear them now, they really take you back to that feeling of that moment. And I think that’s what these songs do for people that heard ‘em every Sunday and especially like the church I went to had a big ol’ pipe organ and a piano and that was just a monstrous sound. It was very – even though I wasn’t that crazy about being at church when I was a young man, that music – I loved that sound.”