• FOURTH OF JULY 2018 SOUNDBITES

    Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776, declaring independence from Great Britain. The holiday is commonly associated with fireworks displays, parades, barbecues and concerts. Some of your favorite country stars take time to remember their Fourth of July traditions, memories and what the holiday really means to them.

    Several artists will perform during Independence Day celebrations. Keith Urban will take part in the annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular, along  with Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson and Ricky Martin, which will be broadcast July 4th at 8pm ET on NBC.

    Carrie Underwood will headline the Fourth of July Hot Country Live event, launching Spotify’s new live concert series based on the streaming services Hot Country Playlist. It will take place at the Seaport’s Rooftop at Pier 17 concert venue.

    Lady Antebellum will headline the free July 4th concert in downtown Nashville. The “Let Freedom Sing” concert event will also feature performances by Chris Janson and Lucie Silvas. Following the show, there will be a 30-minute fireworks show, which is touted as one of the biggest in the country and will be synchronized to a live performance from the Nashville Symphony.

    Lauren Alaina will perform during A Capitol Fourth, an annual Independence Day special on PBS. Luke Combs will also perform. A Capitol Fourth, hosted by John Stamos, will air live from the West Lawn of the White House on July 4th at 8pm ET on PBS.

    Audio / Alan Jackson recalls one of the coolest Fourth of July memories he’s ever enjoyed.

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    AJ (fave 4th of July memory) OC: …very cool. :58
    Well, this one is hard to beat. A couple of years ago, maybe longer than that now, I had an old boat in Florida. It’s like an old antique motor yacht, and it was kind of a cool old boat. I had taken that boat, I’ve always wanted to take it up north like to New York and up in that area, up in the northeast where it’s so pretty. So, we took the boat up there and Denise and the girls, we all went up. They like going to New York City, which I don’t really care about going to the city. So, I got to stay in my boat there at the harbor tied up, which was cool anyway. So they spent time in the city a few days and then that was Fourth of July, and we went out in the Hudson River that night and they shot the fireworks off and we were anchored out in front of the Statue of Liberty and New York City was behind us, and the Statue of Liberty and the fireworks were going off sitting on that boat. That was the coolest thing and my girls still talk about that. I mean, that was the coolest thing on Fourth of July I can ever remember. I can’t top that one probably. It was emotional sitting there watching the Statue of Liberty and thinking about all that. It was very cool.”

     

    Audio / Billy Currington talks about his favorite Fourth of July memories.

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    Billy Currington (4th of July) OC: …of my life. :16
    “My best memories would be hanging out with my mom, brother and sister on the beach on Tybee Island right off the coast of Savannah, Georgia. We’d go there every year, and we’d light our own fireworks and watch the ones that they had for us. They were the best times, some of the best times of my life.”

    Audio / Brandon Lay talks about his memories of the Fourth of July growing up in Jackson, Tennessee.

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    Brandon Lay (Fourth of July) OC: …good times. :47
    “I remember everybody hanging out at my grandmother’s and we would drive down the road to a fireworks stand off the side of Highway 45 out there in Jackson [Tennessee]. Just getting the bottle rockets and Black Cats and bringing ‘em back to the house, it felt like it was an eternity before it got dark. We just kept wanting to light ‘em and our parents would tell us it ain’t time, but just how exhilarating it was to see ‘em shoot up. We’re not talking big time fireworks here, but you would’ve thought that it was. It’s funny just how you remember things, but I just remember a screen door at my grandmother’s, running in and out, in and out, in and out and four wild little cousins running around. It was good times.”

     

    Audio / Clare Dunn and her family are usually in the midst of harvesting their crops during the Fourth of July holiday, but she says it's one of her favorite memories growing up since that was when they were all together as a family.

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    Clare Dunn (Fourth of July) OC: …with your family. 1:12
    “Fourth of July is probably one of the biggest memories for me, because it’s always during harvest time. And harvest time, being a farmer, is your most important time of the year. It’s always nine-o. It’s always busy, busy, busy, busy, busy, but we always go into town, depending on what field we’re at. A lot of my memories are South Grenada, Colorado, we farm just south of that town, and we go into town and get Mexican food, a great Mexican food place called Shorty’s, and we get tostados and enchiladas and we take them back out to the field. And everybody stops for a second and we eat on the hoods or the tailgates of pickups, and we’re just all out there in the field taking a brief moment to eat dinner and then get back to cutting. And if you’re lucky you’ll see some fireworks from town. Those are some of my favorite memories growing up because you’re all out there working. You’re together, and it’s just the moment of pride, of getting the harvest in and getting to be with your family.”

    Audio / Darius Rucker enjoys setting off fireworks.

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    Darius Rucker (fireworks) OC: …off once. :15
    “Oh, I love fireworks. We had the bottle rocket fights and all that good stuff. I was the typical little crazy kid, you know. In South Carolina, it was always legal, so we shot fireworks when it was legal. We did all that sort of stuff. I almost blew my hand off once.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley says the people of this country are what define America.

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    Dierks (people are America) OC: …all about. :17
    “The definition of America to me, you know, getting a chance to travel across the country on a tour bus, stepping upon stages whether it be county fairs, state fairs, arenas, rock bars, the Opry stage, anywhere across the country and looking out at that crowd and seeing people. The people, to me, are what America’s all about.”

    Audio / Eric Church recalls his family activities on the Fourth of July holiday.

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    Eric Church (4th of July) OC: …freedoms. 1:17
    “The Fourth of July for me, growing up we would always go to the lake, we didn’t live on the lake but we would all go to the lake. Had a buddy who had a pontoon and we would always get on the pontoon and you go out and you’d tie all the pontoons together and just have a big time. This was before, I was younger then, the adults were having more fun than we were, you know it was just to go swim in the water and shoot off fireworks. Basically, water tailgating is what it was. And then as we got older, same thing…we would just, us younger kids had our own boat and we had as much fun as the adults.”

    Audio / Jordan Davis talks about some of his favorite childhood Fourth of July memories.

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    Jordan Davis (Fourth of July) 2 OC: …really cool. :17
    “Probably baseball games, firework shows at baseball games. We’d go to Shreveport Captains games, so yeah, we’d do that or barbecues and fireworks. I can remember being on the lake for a couple of Fourth of Julys. We’d take the boat out and we’d watch the downtown fireworks show from the boat, which was really cool.”

    Audio / Josh Turner, who will perform in Demorest, Georgia on Independence Day, talks about the fireworks “wars” his family would have when he was growing up.

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    Josh Turner (fireworks) OC: …of money. [laughs] :20
    “Yeah, we had fireworks around, especially my Daddy’s family. All the individual families had a lot of competition with each other and tried to outdo each other to try to see who had the biggest and baddest fireworks and all that. [laughs] My daddy, I think, was the smartest one. He just went out and bought maybe $25 worth of fireworks and let everybody else put on the big show, so he saved a lot of money.” [laughs]

    Audio / Keith Urban recalls coming over to America for the first time.

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    Keith Urban (coming to America 1st time) OC: …as I could. :39
    “1989 was the first year I came to the States, and it had always been my goal, but I had no plan on how to get here. It was just a case of keep playing, keep getting better at what you do, and then hopefully, somehow, some way I’ll end up over here. The guy who was managing me at the time, we just planned a trip over here – it was actually for the New Music Seminar in New York. And we came over for that, and then we did a trip down to Nashville, and I was shopping my little demo around. I think I humored everybody more than anything else [laughs] with my tragic, ill-fitting demo for the time. So, I left there, but I was just so committed to coming back as quick as I could.”

    Audio / Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott talks about her favorite Fourth of July memories.

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    Lady A (4th of July-Hillary) OC: …on my hand. :29
    “For many, many years in a row, we would be up at the lake for Fourth of July, and having those memories of being on the boat and going tubing and skiing and enjoying being out in the summertime, great weather on the water. But, then for me, Fourth of July was when [husband] Chris [Tyrell] proposed. So, I got proposed to on July 2nd up at the lake, the same lake I grew up going to, and so that’s probably the biggest highlight of Fourth of July to me – getting a rock on my hand.”

    Audio / Every year, Lady Antebellum’s Dave Haywood celebrates his birthday along with America’s big day.

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    Lady A (Fourth of July-Dave) OC: …and America. :45
    “July fourth is always, for me, my birthday week. My birthday is July 5th so we grew up going on family trips to the beach. We would always go to Hilton Head, South Carolina and always take trips for my birthday, so that’s always a fun time of the year…watch fireworks. I think my best memory would be my birthday party when I was 9 or 10 years old. We went to the batting cages and I remember I was swinging so hard, it was 100 degrees outside, I was swinging in the batting cage and ended up passing out right there in the batting cage. You’re trying so hard to hit the ball, you’re a kid and you really don’t realize how much water you should be drinking and [CHARLES: “Dave was that kid.”] I was that kid who was on the ground in the batting cage, people fanning and pouring water all over my face. Happy Birthday to me and America.”

    Audio / Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild talks about the big sacrifices the military AND their families make to keep this country free.

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    LBT (military) OC: (Karen) …whenever we can. (Kimberly: “Yeah.”) :22
    “It’s such a huge sacrifice what these men and women do for us, and not only the ones that are serving, but the families that are left here at home. I mean, it’s just a huge commitment that they make, and what an honor. We love to be able to sing for them and entertain them and to say thank you whenever we can.” (Kimberly: “Yeah.”)

    Audio / Luke Bryan recalls one of his favorite Fourth of July memories.

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    Luke Bryan (4th of July memories) OC: …we used to. :21
    “Some of my favorite Fourth of July memories were spent on Lake Blackshear down in Georgia with my family. I was always kind of in charge of driving home from Tennessee and picking up all the fireworks and my nieces and nephews always got excited when I rolled in because they knew I had all the fireworks. But, it was always a great memory, and I miss not getting to do that as much as we used to.”

    Audio / Maddie & Tae talk about their Fourth of July traditions.

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    Maddie & Tae (Fourth of July) OC: …it’s perfect. :29
    TAE: “One of my favorite Fourth of July traditions – I’d say it’s a tradition ‘cause it happens every year, but I’m not always able to make it – is that we go to my grandparents in Oklahoma, and we all line up lawn chairs right in front of their garage and we just light fireworks. We always do it far away and then we light it, and we always run back and watch the fireworks, but that’s probably one of my favorite memories.” MADDIE: “My birthday is July 7th, so I always get built-in fireworks for my birthday, and sometimes we actually celebrate it on the 4th, because there’s fireworks everywhere, so it’s perfect.”

    Audio / Sam Hunt talks about what he and his family did over the Fourth of July holiday when he was growing up in Georgia.

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    Sam Hunt (Fourth of July) OC: …good time. :39
    “My granddad on the other side of my family, he would always take a lot of pride…fireworks were actually, I’m from Georgia, and most of them were illegal, I’m pretty sure, growing up. But over in Alabama, that’s where all the firework stands were, and we only had to drive 10, 15 minutes to get to the Alabama line, so we could go get a bundle of fireworks pretty easy. But he would always take a lot of pride in going and finding all the good stuff, and coming back with a  big pile. He’d have his torch out there at the end of the driveway and we’d all eat homemade ice cream and put down towels on the driveway and he’d shoot off fireworks for 30-45 minutes. Such a good time.”

    Audio / Travis Denning talks about the Fourth of July events his hometown of Warner Robins, Georgia would throw every year.

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    Travis Denning (Fourth of July) OC: …will love. :51
    “Fourth of July in Warner Robins, Georgia is an event. It’s something else. In fact, forever they’ve thrown an Independence Day concert, and back in the day, it was huge. It was the biggest thing they did all year. They would actually have the concert in the MAC (McConnell-Talbert Stadium), which was the high school football stadium that Warner Robins and Northside and Houston County shared. I mean, one year they had Wynonna play and then they had Josh Turner one year, Darius Rucker. I mean it was like a big deal, and there’d be 15,000, 20,000 people there, and I think it’s so cool that there’s a little bit of a legacy of people coming together in that town and making something happen, you know? I’ll never forget going to those shows and thinking, I was more proud of what the city had done. I was like, ‘That’s just so cool that they could put together a show like this, an event that everybody will love.”

     

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Kacey, Shania, Carrie, Luke, Lauren

    Kacey Musgraves will perform on NBC’s Late Night With Seth Meyers Wednesday (June 20th). Comedian/actor Mike Myers (Austin Powers, Saturday Night Live, Wayne’s World, Shrek) and Allison Brie (Mad Men, Lego Movie) will also appear on the show.

    It’s a tribute to Shania Twain on the television show, Lip Sync Battle on Thursday (June 21st). The episode pits Derek Hough against Nicole Scherzinger. Catch all the action – and an appearance by Shania – this Thursday beginning at 10:30a ET on the Paramount Network.

    Don’t forget Carrie Underwood will perform her anthemic “The Champion” with Ludacris at the Radio Disney Music Awards on Saturday (June 23rd).

    Luke Bryan is set to appear on Live With Kelly & Ryan on June 27th.

    Lauren Alaina will perform during this year’s A Capitol Fourth, which will be televised on PBS. Luke Combs, Jimmy Buffett, The Beach Boys, Pentatonix, CeCe Winans and The Temptations will also perform. The special will air July 4th at 8pm ET on PBS.

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Dierks, Keith, Carrie, Lauren, Jon, Chris

    Dierks Bentley will perform on NBC’s Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon Wednesday (June 13th).

    Keith Urban will be joined by Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson and Ricky Martin on this year’s Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular. The two-hour show will air from New York City on July 4th at 8pm ET on NBC.

    Carrie Underwood will perform at Spotify’s first-ever Hot Country Live show on July 4th in New York at Pier 17. Tickets go on sale Friday (June 15th).

    Lauren Alaina and Jon Pardi will host this year’s ACM Honors at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium August 22nd. Tickets go on this Friday (June 15th). Honorees include Dierks Bentley, Alan Jackson, Darius Rucker and Rhett Akins.

    Justin Timberlake’s song with Chris Stapleton, “Say Something,” has been honored for a Teen Choice Award for Male Artist, while Carrie Underwood is nominated for Choice Country Artist. The Teen Choice Awards will air live from The Forum in Los Angeles August 12th on FOX. Voting is open now.

  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD WINS CMT MUSIC AWARD FOR FEMALE VIDEO OF THE YEAR.

    Carrie Underwood picked up the award for Female Video of the Year for “The Champion” at Wednesday night’s CMT Music Awards. This was her 18th win at the Awards show, the most of any artist in the show’s history.

    Carrie co-wrote “The Champion” last year with fellow songwriters Brett James, Chris DeStefano and Christopher Bridges PKA Ludacris, who Underwood asked to collaborate on the event song produced by Jim Jonsin. “The Champion,” originally written to open NBC’s Super Bowl LII with its own video seen by over 131 million viewers worldwide, and was incorporated into NBC’s current coverage of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Globally, “The Champion” reached No. 1 on the iTunes Top Songs chart in 10 countries including the U.S. where it held the top spot throughout its release week then rose back to the top of the chart for four consecutive days after the Super Bowl LII opening. The song also debuted Top 5 on the all-genre Top 200 Digital Songs chart and reached No. 7 on the Spotify US Viral 50 Chart.

    Carrie will release her new album, Cry Pretty, September 14th. It features the title track which is currently  making its way up the country charts.

    Audio / CARRIE UNDERWOOD SAYS SHE AND “THE CHAMPION” CO-WRITERS, BRETT JAMES AND CHRIS DESTEFANO, RESEARCHED GREAT SPORTS SPEECHES TO INSPIRE THEM TO WRITE THE SONG.

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    “The Champion,” originally written to open NBC’s Super Bowl LII with its own video seen by over 131 million viewers worldwide, and was incorporated into NBC’s current coverage of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Globally, “The Champion” has reached No. 1 on the iTunes Top Songs chart in 10 countries including the U.S. where it held the top spot throughout its release week then rose back to the top of the chart for four consecutive days after the Super Bowl LII opening. The song also debuted Top 5 on the all-genre Top 200 Digital Songs chart and reached No. 7 on the Spotify US Viral 50 Chart.

    Video / The Champion Official video

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  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD AND LITTLE BIG TOWN HAVE BEEN ADDED TO THE LIST OF PERFORMERS FOR THIS YEAR’S CMT MUSIC AWARDS.

    Carrie Underwood and hosts Little Big Town have been added to the list of performers at this year’s CMT Music Awards, in addition to Dan + Shay and Florida Georgia Line. A few special collaborations have been announced for the show, as well. Dierks Bentley will perform with tour mates Brothers Osborne and Darius Rucker will be joined by tour mate Charles Kelley (Lady Antebellum), Luke Bryan and Jason Aldean.

    Carrie has four nominations, including Female Video of the Year, Video of the Year and Collaborative Video of the Year for “The Champion” featuring Ludacris. She’s also nominated for CMT Performance of the Year with Keith Urban for “The Fighter” at last year’s CMT Music Awards.

    The members of Little Big Town are up for two awards, including Group Video of the Year for “When Someone Stops Loving You” and CMT Performance for “Stand Up for Something” with Andra Day, Common, Lee Ann Womack and Danielle Bradbery for last year’s Artists of the Year special.

    They join previously announced performers Chris Stapleton, Sam Hunt, Luke, Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson and Kelsea Ballerini.

    The 2018 CMT Music Awards will air live from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville June 6th at 8pm ET on CMT.

  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD CELEBRATES 10TH ANNIVERSARY AS A GRAND OLE OPRY MEMBER.

    Seven-time GRAMMY® Award winner Carrie Underwood celebrated her 10th Anniversary as a Grand Ole Opry member with an appearance on the Opry Friday night (May 11th) at the Grand Ole Opry House. Carrie was inducted into the Opry family on May 10, 2008 by Opry member Garth Brooks.

    In March 2008, Underwood was surprised with her membership invitation by Opry member Randy Travis after she performed her #1 hit “I Told You So,” a song written and originally recorded by Travis. After hugging a shocked and emotional Underwood, Travis said, “That’s a better performance than I will ever do of that song. Thank you. I’m honored.”

    Tonight, after again performing “I Told You So”, Underwood was surprised when Travis made another appearance to congratulate her on 10 years of Opry membership. Underwood said, “Ten years have flown by. I knew from the moment God blessed me and let me sing country music that I wanted to be a part of this place. Thank you for being here.”

    Underwood, whose new album Cry Pretty will be released by Capitol Records Nashville on September 14th, is also scheduled to play two shows at the Opry on June 5th as part of the Opry’s kick off to CMA Music Festival. Opry members Terri Clark and Chris Janson, plus newcomer Ashley McBryde are also scheduled to perform.

    About Carrie Underwood:
    Carrie Underwood emerged from the promise of her 2005 American Idol win to become a true multi-format, multi-media superstar, spanning achievements in music, television, and film. A seven-time GRAMMY® Award winner, she has sold 64 million records worldwide and recorded 26 #1 singles, 13 of which she co-wrote.  In 2013, Carnie starred as Maria von Trapp in NBC’s three-hour holiday blockbuster, the Emmy®-winning The Sound of Music Live!, whose airings attracted 44 million viewers.  Her 2015 platinum studio album, Storyteller, produced four #1 hits.  In 2015, she launched her fitness and lifestyle brand, CALIA by Carrie Underwood, which is exclusively available at DICK’S Sporting Goods nationwide and online at www.caliastudio.com.  2017 marked her fifth season as the voice of primetime television’s #1 program, Sunday Night Football and last November, she co-hosted the CMA Awards for the tenth consecutive year.  This year, Carrie celebrates 10 years as a proud Grand Ole Opry member and she released the hit event anthem she co-wrote, “The Champion” featuring Ludacris, which opened NBC’s Super Bowl LII and was incorporated into the network’s coverage of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. She will release Cry Pretty, her first studio album on Capitol Records Nashville on September 14, marking the first time she has co-produced her own album.  The title track and lead single was released worldwide on April 11. Co-produced and co-written by Carrie, it has already topped the iTunes Top Songs charts in 12 countries.
  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD SITS DOWN WITH THE TODAY SHOW’S HODA KOTB.

    Carrie Underwood sat down with the Today Show’s Hoda Kotb to talk about her return to the spotlight, her single, “Cry Pretty,” her injuries from a fall late last year, as well as her ACM Performance, her Calia by Carrie Underwood fitness wear line and her mom, Carole.

    Carrie’s new album, Cry Pretty, will be available September 14th.

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  • NEWS AND NOTES: Kacey, Carrie, Jordan, Lauren

    Don’t forget to catch Kacey Musgraves on NBC’s Saturday Night Live this Saturday (May 12th). She is the musical guest, while Amy Schumer will host. Kacey is also scheduled to perform on the Late Late Show With James Corden on May 17th.

    Set your DVR for Carrie Underwood on Sunday night’s (May 13th) American Idol, as she performs her new hit “Cry Pretty,” as well as be the superstar guest mentor on the show.

    Jordan Davis will make his Grand Ole Opry debut on May 12th.

    Lauren Alaina has been added to the lineup for the City of Hope Celebrity Softball Game June 9th at Nashville’s First Tennessee Park.

  • MOTHER’S DAY 2018

    Mother’s Day is on Sunday (May 13th), and some of your favorite country artists are celebrating the mothers in their lives this weekend. In 1914, Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating Mother’s Day, held on the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers.

    Here are some of your favorite country stars honoring all of the Moms out there with stories of their own.

    Audio / Brandon Lay says he probably gets his work-ethic from his Mom.

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    Brandon Lay (Mother’s Day) OC: …comes from her. :2
    “She works harder than anybody I’ve ever seen. She can outwork most 20-year-olds in the yard still. She grew up on a farm, and I think a lot of that just bulldog it and get it done attitude, I probably get from her. She’ll go from sunup to sundown, and she doesn’t complain, and that’s just so rare. I feel like the work ethic, as far as grind it out and get it done, that toughness comes from her.”

    Audio / Carrie Underwood says she doesn't really have any Mother's Day traditions, but she sure enjoys being a Mom to Isaiah.

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    Carrie Underwood (Mother’s Day traditions) OC: …even more so. :40
    “We don’t really have like any Mother’s Day traditions. I feel like I remember me and Dad making breakfast for Mom like once as a kid. I’m pretty sure we just made a giant mess in the kitchen and we never did that again, so. Being on the other side of things, I obviously don’t expect anything from my three-year-old, but my husband’s really good at getting presents from quote unquote Isaiah. It’s really sweet, because he likes to bring me things. He’s such a sweet little guy, and anytime he’s outside, he’ll pick me flowers and things. So, I’m like, ‘You’re learning. You’ve already got me wrapped around your finger, and then you do stuff like that, and it’s even more so.’”

    Audio / Clare Dunn talks about the support and undying devotion her mom has for her and her sister.

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    Clare Dunn (Mother’s Day) OC: …in the world. :41
    “She is unrelenting in her love and her support, and even when we’re crazy kids and we screw up, it doesn’t matter. Her love knows no bounds. And her undying devotion to her kids – to my sister and I – always believing in us a million percent, always backing us up a million percent and helping us navigate life and navigate our dreams and helping us go towards that goal – those are some of the qualities that I hope to have some day as a mother, you know? And I’m so grateful I have THE best mom in the WORLD!”

    Audio / Darius Rucker talks about not disappointing his beloved mother, who passed away in 1992.

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    Darius Rucker (Mother’s Day) OC: …killed me. :17
    “I think that’s the main reason I am how I am…an innate fear of disappointing my mom.  My mom’s not even alive, and I have a fear of her looking down from heaven and going, ‘Man I’m just disappointed in my son.’ She could have said anything in the world to me, but if she would have said, ‘Son, you just disappointed me,’ That would have killed me. It would have killed me.”

    Audio / Darius Rucker’s mother, who passed away in 1992, was always the singer’s biggest supporter.

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    Darius Rucker (Mother) OC: …in my corner. :44
    “My mom was just always great. She worked a lot. She was a nurse and she worked a lot. She took a lot of overtime and stuff to make sure we could live basically, but she always just so supportive, ever since I was a kid. I was always a music kid. Growing up in an African-American neighborhood, I was never that guy who was gonna be pigeonholed to let people say I could only listen to this and I could only do this, because I was African-American. She always supported whatever I wanted to do, whatever I wanted to listen to, wherever I wanted to go, she always had my back. Going to college and everything, she was my biggest supporter and never let my brothers and sisters knock me down or try to tell me I can’t do this or that. All of my success comes because my mother was always in my corner.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley recognizes and appreciates how much work goes into being a mother.

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    Dierks Bentley (Mother’s Day – Cassidy) OC: …to have her. :31
    “It’s the toughest job out there being a mom, and I know from my life with my wife Cassidy. We work as a team together when I’m home, and it takes everyone to get the job done, me and her, working together. So, when I go on the road, I just have so much respect for her because it’s hard to do it right, if you want to do it great, and she does a great job with it. It’s really rewarding, but it’s also very challenging. I’m so thankful that she takes it on the way she does, and our kids are very lucky to have her.”

    Audio / Eric Church says he’s learned quite a bit from his mom.

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    Eric Church (Mother’s Day) OC: …as a man. :57
    “My mom, even though my dad won’t like this, my mom is by far the toughest person that I’ve met. She’s tough. One of those people that’s been through a lot in her life, adversity wise and never complains, always really resilient with anything that’s happened to her. And it’s just that attitude, the positive attitude, regardless of what has happened that I think is the one thing that I got from her. With career, she’s always been a person that’s been really positive through times that I couldn’t find a positive streak, [laughs] and she was always really positive, and very much believes in tough it out, keep working hard, and that’s her motto with stuff like that. I’ve always been impressed with that stuff. Then musically, she’s where I get my talent from, musically. She sings great, always has, her mom sang great. I owe my musical chops to her. And she still sings some. So, career-wise, I owe her everything. And just in life-wise she’s given me a lot of the qualities that it has taken for me to get me where I am. Not only as a musician, but as a man.”

    Audio / Eric Paslay talks about his mother, Donna.

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    Eric Paslay (Mother’s Day) OC: …it’s good. :21
    “I wanna thank my mom for giving me faith, laughter and pride in the family I came from. She’d be the fun Mom, just goofing off in the sprinklers outside or we’d go out and play in the rain and all that stuff growing up. She’s always good to be around; always happy, and it’s good.”

    Audio / Jon Pardi says his mother, Shelly, is an angel.

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    Jon Pardi (Mother’s Day) OC: …worrying about me. :29
    “My mom’s always been there for me. First of all, she’s a great mom. She’s an angel. She takes care of people that aren’t even in the family. She’s always been like that, and she’s a great mother. She’s always proud, and she’s always there supporting and being a great mom. She’s just a good human being. There’s not one mean bone in her body. And she cries about every time I talk to her. She always worries about me. I have to tell her, ‘Stop worrying about me.’”

    Audio / Jordan Davis says he’s a “Mama’s Boy” and hopes he has her kindness and positive outlook.

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    Jordan Davis (Mother’s Day) OC: …Mother’s Day. :30 [laughs]
    “I’m a Mama’s Boy. I love my Mom, and it’s the way she finds the good in everything. With my Mom, as opposed to finding anything negative, she’s gonna find something positive first. That’s something I really hope I can be more like her on; one of the many things I wish I could be more like my mom on. My mom, she loves flowers, so we’ll get her flowers or take her to, we’re slowly getting her into sushi, so we love to take Mom out to sushi spots on Mother’s Day.” [laughs]

    Audio / Keith Urban explains why his wife Nicole Kidman is an extraordinary mother to their two children, Sunday and Faith.

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    Keith Urban (Nicole is extraordinary mother) OC: …to see. :45
    “She’s an extraordinary mum, she really, really is. Those girls are very, very lucky, and I feel very lucky that the children I should have in this world happen to be with Nic. I don’t know anything about raising kids and Nic does, and that comes in extremely, um, it’s really made for an experience I wouldn’t have had without that. Her patience, her recognizing them as people and not just little kids is really extraordinary. Her attention to honoring their feelings and listening to them right from day one – really being attentive to that is not how I was raised at all, so it’s really beautiful to see.”

    Audio / With Mother’s Day on Sunday, Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley explains he and his brothers – Josh and John -- owe their mother a lot for all of their childhood antics.

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    Charles Kelley {Mother) OC: …playing music. :23
    “We were honestly, at times, pretty hard to handle, both of us. We used to play our music loud up above on the second floor [of the house], bang on the drums and the guitar. And my mom’s just one of those people, she’ll do anything for her family and she sacrificed a lot for us boys. Anytime we needed something, she made it happen. And so, we owe her a lot. She’s definitely the reason we’re playing music.”

    Audio / Lauren Alaina says she can count on her mom for just about everything.

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    Lauren Alaina (Mom) OC: …same for her. :19
    “I honestly would not be able to do it without my mom. I get overwhelmed sometimes, and if she wasn’t there to comfort me or tell me, ‘Look just realize what you’ve got going for you,’ I’d be up the creek [without a paddle]. She’s got my back. My mom would walk through a fire pit for me, and I’d do the same for her.”

    Audio / Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild says being a mother to Elijah Dylan Westbrook is the best feeling in the world.

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    LBT (Mother’s Day-Karen) OC: …every day. :23
    “There isn’t anything that means more to me than sitting on the bench and eating a grilled cheese sandwich with this little guy who calls me Mama. There isn’t anything better than that. He’s just a little miracle. I went from dreaming about him to eating grilled cheese sandwiches and ketchup with him, and I could never have dreamed this up – how good it could be, and it just gets better every day.”

    Audio / Maddie & Tae’s Tae Dye said she pulled off a great Mother’s Day surprise a few years ago.

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    Maddie & Tae (Mother’s Day-Tae) OC: …was so fun. :25
    “To this day one of the best surprises I’ve ever pulled off was on Mother’s Day three years ago. ‘Cause my mom’s birthday always tends to fall on Mother’s Day Weekend – it’s coming up – and my mom and dad were coming into Nashville and I was like, ‘Okay-this has got to be a big weekend. It’s Mother’s Day, her birthday and the weather was going to be beautiful, so I planned this awesome surprise where we would drive first – she wouldn’t know where we were going, and then we ended up going canoeing down the Harpeth River [located south of Nashville] and it was so fun.”

    Audio / Shania Twain says it’s such a joy to be a parent.

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    Shania Twain (joy to be a parent) OC: …means everything. :14
    “It’s such a joy to be a parent. So, I relate to all the mums out there who are getting all their love and appreciation from their kids, and I hope, when you’re a kid, a child of somebody, show your mum you love her, because it means everything.”

    Audio / Travis Denning talks about what he and his Mom have in common.

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    Travis Denning (Mother’s Day) OC: …like crazy. :29
    “You know, my favorite thing about my mom, especially as I get older, is realizing how much me and her have in common. I just love that she’s passionate about music. She loves it. I mean, she’s turned me on to a lot of artists, but at the core like she’s still Mom. She reminds me to do things and does these things which that I couldn’t live without. I love that we get to be friends, we get to be best friends, but at the same time, she’s still Mom and she still loves me and my sister like crazy.”

  • THE NOMINATIONS FOR THIS YEAR’S CMT MUSIC AWARDS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED.

    Carrie Underwood leads the list of nominees for this year’s CMT Music Awards nominations with four. Jason Aldean and Florida Georgia Line also have four nods as well. Carrie is nominated for Female Video, Collaborative Video and overall Video of the Year for “The Champion,” as well as for the CMT Performance of the Year Award for her performance with Keith Urban on “The Fighter” at last year’s CMT Music Awards.

     

    Little Big Town, who have been announced as hosts for the show, have three nominations, including Group Video of the Year for “When Someone Stops Loving You,” as well as two entries in the CMT Performance of the Year category for “Stand Up for Something” at the 2017 CMT Artists of the Year show, which also featured Andra Day, Common, Lee Ann Womack and Danielle Bradbery; as well as for “I Won’t Back Down” with Keith Urban, Chris Stapleton and Jason Aldean at the 2017 CMT Artists of the Year show.
    The 2018 CMT Music Awards, hosted by Little Big Town, will air live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena June 6th at 8pm ET. You can vote now at CMT.com until June 4th.

     

    THE NOMINEES FOR THE 2018 CMT MUSIC AWARDS:


    Male Video of the Year

    Blake Shelton — “I’ll Name the Dogs”
    Dustin Lynch — “Small Town Boy”
    Jason Aldean — “You Make It Easy”
    Jon Pardi — “Heartache on the Dance Floor”
    Luke Bryan — “Light It Up”
    Thomas Rhett — “Marry Me”


    Female Video of the Year

    Carly Pearce — “Every Little Thing”
    Carrie Underwood — “The Champion”
    Kelsea Ballerini — “Legends”
    Lauren Alaina — “Doin’ Fine”
    Maren Morris — “I Could Use a Love Song”
    Miranda Lambert — “Tin Man” (from 2017 ACM Awards)


    Duo Video of the Year

    Big & Rich — “Califorinia”
    Brothers Osborne — “It Ain’t My Fault”
    Dan + Shay — “Tequila”
    Florida Georgia Line — “Smooth”
    High Valley — “She’s with Me”
    Tim McGraw & Faith Hill — “Speak to a Girl”


    Group Video of the Year

    Lady Antebellum — “You Look Good”
    LANCO — “Greatest Love Story”
    Little Big Town — “When Someone Stops Loving You”
    Midland — “Make a Little”
    Old Dominion — “No Such Thing as a Broken Heart”
    Rascal Flatts — “Yours If You Want It”
    Zac Brown Band — “My Old Man”

     

    Breakthrough Video of the Year
    Carly Pearce — “Every Little Thing”
    Danielle Bradbery — “Sway”
    Devin Dawson — “All on Me”
    LANCO — “Greatest Love Story”
    Russell Dickerson — “Yours”
    Walker Hayes — “You Broke Up with Me”


    Collaborative Video of the Year

    Bebe Rex featuring Florida Georgia Line — “Meant to Be”
    Carrie Underwood featuring Ludacris– “The Champion”
    Cole Swindell featuring Dierks Bentley — “Flatliner”
    Justin Timberlake featuring Chris Stapleton — “Say Something”
    Kane Brown featuring Lauren Alaina — “What Ifs”
    Thomas Rhett featuring Maren Morris — “Craving You”


    CMT Performance of the Year

    Andra Day, Common, Little Big Town, Lee Ann Womack and Danielle Bradbery — “Stand Up for Something” (2017 CMT Artists of the Year)
    Backstreet Boys and Florida Georgia Line — “Everybody” (CMT Crossroads)
    Charles Kelley, Jason Aldean, Darius Rucker and Derek Trucks — “Midnight Rider” (2017 CMT Music Awards)
    Earth Wind & Fire and Lady Antebellum — “September” (CMT Crossroads)
    Jason Aldean, Keith Urban, Chris Stapleton and Little Big Town — “I Won’t Back Down” (2017 CMT Artists of the Year)
    Keith Urban featuring Carrie Underwood — “The Fighter” (2017 CMT Music Awards)


    Video of the Year 

    Bebe Rexa featuring Florida Georgia Line — “Meant to Be”
    Blake Shelton — “I’ll Name the Dogs”
    Brett Young — “Mercy”
    Brothers Osborne — “It Ain’t My Fault”
    Carrie Underwood featuring Ludacris– “The Champion”
    Dan + Shay — “Tequila”
    Jason Aldean — “You Make It Easy”
    Justin Timberlake featuring Chris Stapleton — “Say Something”
    Kane Brown featuring Lauren Alaina — “What Ifs”
    Kelsea Ballerini — “Legends”
    Luke Combs — “When It Rains It Pours”
    Thomas Rhett — “Marry Me”