• THANKSGIVING 2018: LINERS

    Audio / LINER Adam Hambrick (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey I’m Adam Hambrick, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

     

    Audio / LINER AJ (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hi! This is Alan Jackson. I hope y’all have a very happy Thanksgiving out there.”

    Audio / LINER Billy Currington (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey Guys, I’m Billy Currington. Have a great Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Brandon Lay (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey y’all! This is Brandon Lay. Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Brothers Osborne (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! This is TJ, and this is John, and we’re wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hi! I’m Carrie Underwood, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Clare Dunn (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! This is Clare Dunn, wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Darius Rucker (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey y’all! What’s up? This is Darius Rucker, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Dierks Bentley (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! It’s Dierks Bentley! Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Eric Church (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey folks! It’s Eric Church, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Gary Allan (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey guys! Gary Allan here. I just want to wish everybody a Happy Thanksgiving, and have a Happy Holidays and make sure you’re safe out there. Drive safe. Party your butts off, but do it safe.”

    Audio / LINER George Strait (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hi! This is George Strait, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Jon Langston (Thanksgiving)

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    Hey y’all, I’m Jon Langston, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.

    Audio / LINER Jon Pardi (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! It’s Jon Pardi, wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Jordan Davis (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey I’m Jordan Davis. Happy Thanksgiving, everybody.”

    Audio / LINER Josh Turner (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey y’all I’m Josh Turner, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Kacey Musgraves (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! It’s Kacey Musgraves, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Keith Urban (Thanksgiving)

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    “Happy Thanksgiving everybody. It’s Keith Urban here. I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all of you listening for your incredible love and support that I’ve received over the last year, and to wish you and all of your family all the very best for this holiday.”

    Audio / LINER Kip Moore (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey what’s up guys, this is Kip Moore wishing you a very happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Lauren Alaina (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! This is Lauren Alaina, wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER LBT (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey, we’re Little Big Town. Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! It’s Luke Bryan, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving!”

    Audio / LINER Maddie & Tae (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey everybody! I’m Maddie, and I’m Tae, and we’re Maddie & Tae, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Mickey Guyton (Happy Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey! It’s Mickey Guyton here, and I want to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Sam Hunt (Thanksgiving)

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    “Hey everybody! This is Sam Hunt, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

    Audio / LINER Travis Denning (Thanksgiving)

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    Hey y’all! It’s Travis Denning, wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving.”

  • DARIUS RUCKER CELEBRATES HIS RECENT NO. 1 SONG, “FOR THE FIRST TIME.”

    Darius Rucker celebrated his ninth trip to the top of the country charts with “For the First Time,” which he co-wrote with Derek George and Scooter Carusoe. The three were honored at a party at the performance rights organization, ASCAP, in Nashville on Wednesday (October 17th).

    “It’s a song that, at especially this point in my career, I just thought it was a really cool song to write because getting to have as much fun as I’ve had, and now I’m thinking about all of the stuff I said I was going to do when I was a kid if I ever made it,” says Darius. “Now I want to do all those things again. All that really came from my song; that bucket list thing and everything I’m doing all came from writing that song.”

    Darius, who just wrapped up his coheadlining Summer Plays on Tour with pals Lady Antebellum, will headline the 15th Anniversary Drive for Show, Rock Fore! Dough concert taking place at The First Tee of Augusta’s Driving Range April 9th.

    Audio / Darius Rucker says his “bucket list” of things to do for the first time, came from writing his No. 1 song “For the First Time.”

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    Darius Rucker (For the First Time No. 1) OC: …writing that song. :22
    “It’s a song that, at especially this point in my career, I just thought it was a really cool song to write because getting to have as much fun as I’ve had, and now I’m thinking about all of the stuff I said I was going to do when I was a kid if I ever made it. Now I want to do all those things again. All that really came from my song; that bucket list thing and everything I’m doing all came from writing that song.”

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  • HALLOWEEN 2018: Adam, Alan, Billy, Brothers O, Clare, Darius, Dierks, Eric, Jon, Jon, Jordan, Luke, Maddie & Tae, Travis

    Halloween is Wednesday, October 31st, and the holiday has some of your favorite country stars getting into costumes, while others are recalling memories of Halloweens past.

     

    Audio / Adam Hambrick talks about one of his favorite Halloween costumes as a kid.

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    Adam Hambrick (Halloween) OC: …five-years-old. :10
    “My grandmother made me a Ghostbusters jumpsuit, and I had the proton backpack and I went as Peter Venkman, the Ghostbuster, when I was five-years-old.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson used to take his now grown daughters trick-or-treating when they were young children, but he recalls one costume that he hated. It was an infant costume that made one of the girls look like a little peapod.

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    AJ (Halloween) OC: …cute, but…[laughs] :17
    “Aww, I remember some, when they were infants, they had like these little, they looked like a little pea pod, you know, or something. It’s like a little green pea or something. And I thought man, that’s awful. But Denise liked it, and I guess it was cute, but…(laughs).”

    Audio / Billy Currington reminisces about his childhood Halloween memories.

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    Billy Currington (Halloween) OC: …Halloween. :17
    “You know, when I was a kid, I loved the trick and the treat. I loved dressing up. I was always wanting to be Dracula. That was my favorite guy. But, of course, who doesn’t love going door-to-door and getting these buckets of candy? [laughs] So, love, love Halloween.”

     

    Audio / JOHN AND TJ OSBORNE TALK ABOUT THEIR FAVORITE HALLOWEEN CANDY.

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    Brothers Osborne (Halloween candy) OC: (John) …go stale. [laughs] :34
    TJ: “I would say, Snickers, Baby Ruth, Kit Kat and Reese’s too.” JOHN: “I always hated those houses that would give you bad candy, though. You’re like, ‘C’mon. Step it up.’ Spend the extra dollar on a bag, you know?” TJ: “A house when we were growing up used to give out whole candy bars. It was the best. You were like, ‘That house – that’s the honey hole of candy.’” JOHN: “I love it, and I love like at the end, like three or four days after Halloween you would see what candy was left, and it was always like those crappy cheap candies, and they would just go stale.” [laughs]

    Audio / Brothers Osborne’s John Osborne talks about carving pumpkins with their dad when they were growing up.

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    Brothers Osborne (carving pumpkins) OC: …or something. :25
    “With our dad every year, we would go looking for pumpkins, and we would all get our own pumpkin to carve, and he would buy the biggest pumpkin that they had. It was huge. I mean, it was way too big for any one person, but he would love carving. He’s kind of an artsy guy. He was a great drawer and stuff, and he would carve the most terrifying, vicious looking, scary pumpkin you’d ever seen in your life, and it would be massive. It would be like on a 50-pound pumpkin or something.”

    Audio / Brothers Osborne’s TJ and John Osborne talk about dressing up like zombies for Halloween.

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    Brothers Osborne (zombie costume) OC: (John) …was so fun! :29
    TJ: “Literally, you can dress up like a zombie and drag your foot behind you all day and make weird noises, and everyone finds that completely acceptable.” [laughs] JOHN: “One year I dressed up as a ‘90s redneck zombie with a mullet wig and an Alan Jackson denim coat. I never once broke character. That’s part of the thing — you can actually not break character and get away with it. And everywhere I went, even when I ordered a drink, I ordered it like a zombie that was falling apart. [laughs] It was so fun!”

    Audio / Brothers Osborne’s TJ Osborne talks about one of his favorite childhood Halloween costumes.

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    Brothers Osborne (Halloween costume) OC: (TJ) …I love it. :37
    TJ: “There was a costume I had when I was a kid that my dad made. I was a caterpillar, no, you were a caterpillar and I was a spider. And so I don’t know if you’re familiar with pipe insulation? It’s like these black tubes, and so I had these little black pipe insulators as my legs.” JOHN: “There were strings attached to him that would hold some of the black pipe insulators under his hands, and he’d put working gloves on the end of them and so when he’d raise his arms, all of the little spider legs would raise up with it. [laughs] I’m telling you, our parents were total hippies. They were just…” TJ: “Artsy-fartsy hippies. I love it.”

    Audio / Growing up on a working ranch where the nearest neighbor was about five miles away, Clare Dunn says trick-or-treating was hit-or-miss.

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    Clare Dunn (Halloween) OC: …and stuff. :23
    “Halloween was always hit and miss. I mean it’s five miles to my nearest neighbor. So, for us if we wanted to go trick-or-treating or whatever, some of the country kids a couple of years would all band together and we’d drive around in vehicles from house to house to house. So, we’d all pile into a pickup and then we’d go annoy our neighbors for candy and stuff.”

    Audio / Darius Rucker loves Halloween, especially because it’s his kids’ favorite holiday.

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    Darius (Halloween) OC: …I’m into. :06
    “Halloween’s big for me, because the kids love it. It’s my kids’ favorite holiday, so anything they’re into, I’m into.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley talks about the Halloweens of his childhood.

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    Dierks Bentley (Halloween) OC: … …around home. [laughs]  :23
    “Oh, when I was a kid, I was all into fireworks. Growing up in Arizona, we couldn’t get ’em, so we’d have ’em shipped in illegally. I still remember the name of the guy we’d call. His name was Joe, and he’d bring in, ship ’em in a package with no writing on ’em. We were all about M-80s in the mailboxes and bottle rocket wars. To me, as a kid, Halloween was fireworks, was blowing up stuff around home. [laughs]”

    Audio / Eric Church recalls his favorite Halloween costume.

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    Eric Church (Halloween) OC: …Franklin Street. 1:18
    “My favorite Halloween costume really came, I remember when I got a little older my first year of college, there’s this thing they do every year in Chapel Hill, North Carolina – Halloween on Franklin Street. We drove down from Boone, North Carolina. I had a bunch of friends that went to University of North Carolina, and we didn’t have costumes and didn’t realize until we were on the way that we had to have costumes. So, we stopped at a costume place in Greensboro, North Carolina. It’s Halloween, so there’s a run on everything and couldn’t find anything. And we end up getting sent around, driving  around town. We end up finding this hole in the wall place, but they had the full costume, Sesame Street outfits. The real deal. The real ones [with] feathers and fur. We were Elmo, Cookie Monster and I was Big Bird, and the Big Bird was the actual Big Bird. It’s about 7-foot-4, and yiou looked out of the body and then you had these straps that went on since the head was a lot higher. There’s a lot of beer involved in Franklin Street, so we get down there and as the night went on, my straps broke, so the head would pivot. And so, I would be walking one way and the head would be facing the other, and it just became this funny…I didn’t know the head was on backwards. I had no idea. I see out of the body, so I’m just kinda walking around and people were talking to my ass-end. [laughs] The whole time peiople’d come up and start talking and go, ‘Hey, turn around.’ And I’d turn around, and they’d go, ‘No turn around.’ It was a mess. That year, there was no other Big Bird on Franklin Street.”

    Audio / Jon Langston talks about his most memorable Halloween.

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    Jon Langston (Halloween show) OC: …memorable Halloween. :59
    “So we played a show a few years ago in Baton Rouge and I go off stage and I come back on stage for the encore. I don’t know this until midway through the song, I’m just into the crowd, like I’m engaged. I’m in the zone, and I just see everyone, like everybody else behind me but me and I’m like what’s going on. I turn around and each of them has a different huge mask on, like one of those stuffed animal masks, like my drummer has a dinosaur head on. My guitar players, one of ‘em has monkey head on, the other has a unicorn head on. And my bass player has like a, I think a dog or cat head or something like that. I couldn’t finish the song I was laughing so hard just seeing them playing with these like over-sized huge mask heads on Halloween night. That was funny. It was a good prank, so that was probably the most memorable Halloween.”

    Audio / Jon Pardi reveals his favorite Halloween candy.

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    Jon Pardi (Halloween candy) OC: …during Halloween. :06
    “Man! The candy corn is pretty good, and that’s seasonal, so it only kinda pops out during Halloween.”

    Audio / Jon Pardi talks about his favorite Halloween costumes as a child.

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    Jon Pardi (Halloween) 1 OC: …the Superman. :15
    “Man, I went through phases of costumes – the Superman costume, then it was a ninja, then I was a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle one year. I remember rockin’ the Superman.”

    Audio / JORDAN DAVIS TALKS ABOUT HIS FAVORITE HALLOWEEN COSTUMES OVER THE YEARS.

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    Jordan Davis (Halloween costumes) OC: …jet black. :49
    “I can remember being really big into Power Rangers. I always liked the Red Ranger. I remember being Red Ranger one Halloween. I remember me and my brother being big into the Ninja Turtles. I was Donatello one year, which I think was the purple turtle. I think, though, my favorite Halloween was I was in college and I went as Luigi from Mario and Luigi, and I actually grew a legit mustache and dyed it jet black and ran into an e-girlfriend at the costume shop and completely forgot I had the mustache on. So, when Is saw her, she was like, ‘So, you’re going with a mustache nowadays, huh?’ [laughs] I remember being like, ‘I swear this is part of my Halloween costume.’ [laughs] When I dyed my mustache, my top lip was black for a week. Like I really did dye it jet black.”

    Audio / JORDAN DAVIS TALKS ABOUT HIS FAVORITE HALLOWEEN CANDY.

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    Jordan Davis (Halloween candy) OC: …some Starbursts. :21
    “My favorite Halloween candy [is] probably Reese’s or M&M’s, although I love the variety of Starburst. It’s one that I feel like I only eat at Halloween, because I feel like at Halloween one of the popular ones is the two-piece Starburst things. So, probably Reese’s, M&Ms and throw in some Starbursts.”

    Audio / CANDY CORN IS A PRETTY POLARIZING CANDY THAT ONLY COMES OUT AROUND HALLOWEEN. SOME LOVE IT; SOME HATE IT AND NEITHER OPINION IS WRONG. JORDAN DAVIS SIDES WITH THE HATERS (DON’T BLAME HIM), SINCE HE’S JUST NOT THAT INTO CANDY CORN.

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    Jordan Davis (no candy corn) OC: …they’re awful. :05
    “You know what I never got? The candy corns. I’ve never been a candy corn guy. I think they’re awful.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan says you can tell a lot about your neighbors from what kind of Halloween candy they hand out.

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    Luke Bryan (Halloween) OC: …your teeth. :21
    “You can find out a lot about your neighbors by what kind of candy they put out. So, well, like full bars of Snickers bars, that’s what, and Reese’s cups, [but] the old chocolate popcorn ball of stuff, that’s no good either, like Dots – you get Dots one time of year and they pull your teeth.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan says his wife Caroline usually pick out his Halloween costumes.

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    Luke Bryan (Halloween costumes) OC: …always has. :20
    “Me and Caroline did one year where I dressed up as the old lady, and she dressed up as, she called herself a dirty old man. So, she went around acting like an old man saying snide comments to everybody. That was a fun one. The main thing is Caroline is big, she loves Halloween and always has.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan talks about his Halloween traditions.

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    Luke Bryan (Halloween) 2 OC: …with all that. :33
    “My tradition for Halloween is Caroline picks the outfit. I never know what I’m wearing. So that day, I’ll talk to the neighbors ‘cause I have a tractor back there and I’ll go get my tractor and get a big long trailer, and then I’ll run down to…a couple miles from the farm, we’ve got a big hay farmer that keeps hay and you run in there and pay him for his hay bales. And I’ll load the hay up and get the hayride ready and we’ll take all the kids behind the tractor and have a fun Halloween with all that.”

    Audio / Maddie & Tae sit on opposite sides of the fence when it comes to scary movies.

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    Maddie & Tae (Halloween) OC: …princesses. :24
    TAE: “Oooooh, Halloween [is] my favorite holiday. Anyone who knows me knows I love all things scary and gory, so especially on Halloween all the scary movies that come out in theaters, I am there every single time.” MADDIE: “And I never go with her because I hate scary things.” TAE: “You know what’s funny? As little girls, everyone wants to dress up as princesses, and I think I was a witch like six years in a row. I just wanted to be scary.” MADDIE: “Girl, I was like Jasmine and you know [other] princesses.”

    Audio / Travis Denning talks about his favorite – and probably most embarrassing – Halloween costume.

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    Travis Denning (Halloween costume) OC: …Busch Light. :21
    “Honestly, I think one of my most proud and embarrassed Halloween costumes is I went as Terry from Reno 9-1-1. I had the roller skates, the short-shorts, the tied-up shirt. Looking back, it wasn’t the manliest thing I ever did, but it got a lot of laughs. And I think that year my favorite candy I ever had was Busch Light.”

  • HALLOWEEN LINERS 2018

    Audio / LINER Adam Hambrick (Halloween)

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    “Hey! This is Adam Hambrick. Happy Halloween.”

     

    Audio / LINER Billy Currington (Trick or Treat)

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    “Trick or Treat, baby.”

    Audio / LINER Brandon Lay (Halloween)

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    “Hey everybody! This is Brandon Lay, wishing you a Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Brothers Osborne (Halloween)

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    “Hey! This is TJ, and I’m John, and we are Brothers Osborne. Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Halloween)

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    “Hi! I’m Carrie Underwood, wishing you a Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Clare Dunn (Halloween)

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    “Hey! This is Clare Dunn, wishing you a very Happy Halloween.”

     

    Audio / LINER Darius Rucker (Halloween)

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

    Audio / LINER Dierks Bentley (Halloween)

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    “Hey! It’s Dierks Bentley, wishing you a Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Eric Church (Halloween)

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    “Hey! This is Eric Church, wishing you a very Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Jon Langston (Halloween)

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    “Hey y’all! I’m Jon Langston. Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Jordan Davis (Halloween)

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    “Hey! I’m Jordan Davis, wishing you a Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Josh Turner (Halloween)

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    “Hey y’all, I’m Josh Turner, wishing you a Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Kacey Musgraves (Halloween)

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    “Hey! It’s Kacey Musgraves, and I hope you have a Happy Halloween.”

     

    Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Halloween)

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    “Hey! What’s up, y’all? I’m Luke Bryan, wishing you a very Happy Halloween. Boo!”

     

    Audio / LINER Maddie & Tae (Halloween)

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    “Hi! We’re Maddie & Tae. Happy Halloween.”

    Audio / LINER Sam Hunt (Happy Halloween)

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    “Hey everybody! This is Sam Hunt. Happy Halloween!”

  • DARIUS RUCKER HOSTS AN OPRY TRIBUTE TO RAY CHARLES.

    TheGrand Ole Opry®, in association with the Ray Charles Foundation, celebrated the songs of Ray Charles and the influence this revolutionary artist had on country music, on a special Monday night Opry, An Opry Salute to Ray Charles. 
     
    The event was taped for a TV special that will premiere in February 2019 on public television stations nationwide.

    Darius Rucker hosted the event, which united two iconic entities with unique collaborations and special performances of Charles’ music, performed by a star-studded lineup including Boyz II Men, Cam, Brett Eldredge, Leela JamesJessie Key, Ronnie MilsapLukas Nelson, LeAnn RimesAllen Stone, Travis TrittCharlie Wilson, and Chris Young. Additionally, Trisha Yearwood contributed a memorable rendition of “You Don’t Know Me” that was taped for inclusion in the television special.

    During his formative years in Georgia and Florida, Ray Charles listened regularly to the Grand Ole Opry, beaming throughout the South via Nashville’s WSM-AM. Charles blended the blues and gospel into his original brand of R&B, played jazz, and recorded two volumes of the influential album Modern Sounds in Country & Western Music. The musical span of the artists featured on “An Opry Salute to Ray Charles” reflects the legendary artist’s ability to find the common ground in disparate styles of music and present them with a singular voice.

    Host Darius Rucker addressed the packed audience at the beginning of the show stating, “As a Grand Ole Opry member I am moved to see the Opry recognize Ray and the magnitude of his contribution to country music. Both the Grand Ole Opry and Ray shared the same vision – to bridge musical genres.”

    The diverse list of artists who performed in tribute to Ray Charles with memorable covers and collaborations that will be seen on the television special include:

    • Boyz II Men and Chris Young opened the show with a special collaboration of “Your Love So Doggone Good” from the 1970 Ray Charles album Love Country Style
    • Travis Tritt revisited “I Am Moving On” which he originally performed with Ray Charles
    • Brett Eldredge moved the crowd with “That Lucky Old Sun”
    • LeAnn Rimes dazzled with her performance of “Fever”
    • Charlie Wilson rocked the house with “Unchain My Heart”
    • In between hosting duties, Darius Rucker performed “Don’t Change On Me”
    • Boyz II Men performed a stirring rendition of Ray Charles’ legendary hit “Georgia On My Mind” receiving a standing ovation from the packed crowd
    • Ronnie Milsap and Jessie Key joined forces on “You Are my Sunshine”
    • Leela James and Cam performed an energetic “Don’t Tell Me Your Troubles”
    • Lukas Nelson honored his dad, Willie Nelson, and Ray Charles with his version of their duet “Seven Spanish Angels”
    • Chris Young captivated the audience with Ray’s mega-hit “I Can’t Stop Loving You”
    • Allen Stone and Cam created a unique version of “Here We Go Again”
    • Charlie Wilson and LeAnn Rimes delivered a stunning collaboration of “Crying Time”
    • A powerful all-star collaboration of “America The Beautiful” performed by all of the artists closed out the show with an uplifting message of unity

     

  • DARIUS RUCKER AND LADY ANTEBELLUM WRAP THEIR CO-HEADLINING SUMMER PLAYS ON TOUR THIS PAST WEEKEND.

    After sharing a long-time friendship and touring history, current CMA nominated act Lady Antebellum and multi-Platinum selling artist Darius Rucker wrapped their co-headlining Summer Plays On Tour this past weekend on the East Coast. Throughout the summer run, the superstars dubbed “two of Country music’s most upbeat and crowd-pleasing artists” by the Tampa Bay Times brought “the best of both worlds” according to the Indianapolis Star, while delivering what The Oakland Press referred to as “a jukebox worth of hits.” Both acts, along with opener Russell Dickerson, offered unique and spontaneous collaborations and were lauded by PEOPLE for their “action-packed sets” each night as a dollar from every ticket sold was donated to LadyAid and Just Be You art therapy.

    “Spending this summer with Darius has made for one of the most memorable tours we have had as a band,” said Dave Haywood. “There were nights the fans were so loud we couldn’t hear each other, and that’s a reaction you just don’t get unless everyone is having a blast. We can’t thank everyone enough for coming out and Russell for getting us started every night.”

    “It’s hard to believe this summer is already over,” shares Rucker. “We’ve been one big family on the road this year, and I think that came across on stage every single night. Of all the years we’ve hit the road, this one was special. I want to thank the fans as we had so much fun on stage because they really brought so much energy and excitement every single night. For me, that’s what summer is all about: music, family, friends and sharing something special that we’ll remember forever.”

    With “plenty of energy and vigor” as recognized by the Phoenix News Times, Rucker and Lady A were praised by the Cleveland Plain Dealer as “one of the biggest mainstream country pairings of the summer.”

    The St. Louis Dispatch remarked that “if a music show is made of moments, the night had one that fans probably still are talking about,” while the OC Register raved that the tour was “a true co-headlining run with both acts playing equal time and popping into each other’s sets randomly throughout.” As the Milwaukee Jouurnal Sentinel explained, “the star power was especially strong at the end, when Rucker and Lady A appeared together for a three-song, 20-minute encore.”

  • DARIUS RUCKER WILL PLAY HOST TO A CELEBRATION OF RAY CHARLES AT THE GRAND OLE OPRY.

    The Grand Ole Opry® will celebrate the songs of Ray Charles as well as the influence the iconic artist had on not only country music, but all of music on a special Monday Night Opry, “An Opry Salute to Ray Charles,” on October 8. “An Opry Salute to Ray Charles” will be hosted by Opry member Darius Rucker and will feature unique collaborations and special performances of Charles’s music, performed by Boyz II Men, Cam, Brett Eldredge, Leela James, Lukas Nelson, Allen Stone, Travis Tritt, Chris Young and more.

    “An Opry Salute to Ray Charles” will be filmed for a PBS television special to air in November 2018. The special will also feature behind the scenes footage, a visit to the Ray Charles Library and iconic footage courtesy of the Ray Charles Foundation.

    “When you think of musical legends, you think of Ray Charles,” says Rucker. “To host this great event celebrating his legacy at the Opry makes it even more special. Being asked to join the Opry six years ago was one of the greatest highlights of my career and it’s an honor any time I get to step onto that stage, especially for a night like this.”

    Tickets for “An Opry Salute to Ray Charles” will go on sale tomorrow, Thursday September 20 at 10:00 am at (615) 871-OPRY and opry.com.

    The special Monday Night Opry will kick-off a star-studded Opry 93rd birthday week which includes not only the previously announced special birthday concert by Opry and Country Music Hall of Fame member Charley Pride at 3 PM Sat., Oct. 13 at the Grand Ole Opry House but Opry shows on Tuesday, October 9 and an Opry Country Classics show hosted by Larry Gatlin on Thursday, Oct 11 at the Ryman Auditorium. The official Opry Birthday Bash weekend includes two shows on Friday and Saturday, October 12 and 13.

    Among other artists coming soon to the Opry are Alabama, Lauren Alaina, Kelsea Ballerini. Bobby Bare, Charlie Daniels Band, Luke Combs, Crystal Gayle, Emmylou Harris, Chris Janson, Little Big Town, Dustin Lynch, Craig Morgan, Lorrie Morgan, Carly Pearce, Rascal Flatts, Ricky Skaggs, and more.Tickets for upcoming shows are on sale now at opry.comand (615) 871-OPRY.

    Darius is currently climbing his way up the country charts with “Straight to Hell,” featuring Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean and Charles Kelley.

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Brandon, Kip, Darius, Luke

    Brandon Lay, who is making his way up the country charts with “Yada Yada Yada,” will make his Grand Ole Opry debut on September 29th!

    Kip Moore, Darius Rucker and Jewel have been added to the list of performers at the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) annual Nashville Songwriter Awards. The event, which will also feature previously announced performers Brothers Osborne, Thomas Rhett, Old Dominion, Brantley Gilbert, Blake Shelton, Scott McCreery and others, will take place September 19th at the Ryman Auditorium.

    Luke Bryan appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America for the second time this week. On Tuesday, he helped announce the CMA nominees from his bar, Luke’s 32 Bridge Food + Drink, along with Dan + Shay and Sugarland. On Wednesday (August 29th), he took GMA anchor Paula Faris for a tour around the bar, where they talked about his upbringing, peanuts, family and his multi-week No. 1 smash “Most People Are Good.” Check out the interview here.

  • LABOR DAY 2018: AJ, BILLY, BRANDON, CARRIE, CLARE, DARIUS, DIERKS, ERIC, JON, JORDAN, KEITH, KIP, LADY A, LUKE, MADDIE & TAE, TRAVIS

    For many decades, Labor Day was seen as a day for workers to voice their complaints and discuss better working conditions and pay.

    U.S. Congress declared Labor Day a national holiday in 1894, and on Monday, September 3rd, we will once again celebrate the people in every occupation whose work and dedication make this nation great. Labor Day in the United States is a holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. It is a celebration of the American labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers.

    Labor Day weekend also signals the unofficial end to summer, and many of the hottest country stars are taking a look back at some of the toughest jobs they had prior to making their mark in music or talking about their dream job now.

    For Labor Day Liners, click here.

    Audio / Alan Jackson says that working man values have always been a part of his music.

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    AJ (working people songs) OC: … appreciate that. :28
    “I’ve always written songs and recorded songs, other people’s songs, about workin’ people, and workin’, the workin’ life ’cause I mean, that’s where I’m from. I mean, I worked…I’d already had jobs and worked as a grown person before I ever even thought about bein’ in the music business, so I come from that background, and…although I hadn’t had a job in a long time (laughs), I still remember a lot about it, you know, and I remember what the lifestyle is, and I still appreciate that.”

    Audio / Billy Currington recalls some of the jobs he had before landing his record deal in 2003.

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    Billy Currington (Labor Day) OC: …record deal. :40
    “I started working like at [age] 12, landscaping. This was summer, every summers, and roofing. I started when I was about 16 roofing houses, and that was probably one of my toughest jobs because down there in south Georgia, it gets hot, so doing that every day all summer long. The pawn shop when I moved to Nashville was one of my favorites, even though it was one of my least favorites. The concrete job was my least favorite of all – six years of that, and I couldn’t take it no more. After that job, that was my turning point. Either I’m going to do something else for a living [laughs] or quit and try to really focus on music and get this record deal.”

     

    Audio / Brandon Lay says he’s always enjoyed the Labor Day Weekend.

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    Brandon Lay (Labor Day) OC: …a good one. :13
    “You know, I can’t complain too much about Labor Day, ‘cause usually doing landscaping and it had slowed down a little, but the water’s still warm enough to hit the river. I’ve gotten to spend some time out on the lake for Labor Day, so Labor Day’s a good one.”

    Audio / Carrie Underwood talks about the jobs she had growing up and her best job -- performing for her fans.

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    Carrie Underwood (Labor Day) OC: …born to do. :59
    “I don’t think I’ve ever had a bad job. I’ve had hard jobs. I’ve had jobs that worked random hours. My first job was at a gas station, and that was a lot of fun actually. While I was working at the gas station, I took another job at a hotel down the street. There was nobody else working there. I had one day of training and then the next day I came in, and the lady that had worked there the longest and was training me just didn’t show. So, the second day at work I was now in charge ‘cause I was now the senior member that was working at the hotel. So, I feel like that one was really challenging to figure my way through it, but I did. My best job is definitely what I do now. I really like being on stage. I really like performing for people and just having fun and singing, because that’s what I feel like I was born to do.”

     

    Audio / Clare Dunn gets emotional when talking about driving a silage truck in Texas to make enough money to move to Tennessee to follow her dream.

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    Clare Dunn (Labor Day) OC: …had to do. 1:05
    “I was coming for school. I remember I was two weeks late for school [at Belmont], because I had stayed in Texas longer to drive a silage truck for harvest. Harvest was still going on and I needed the money, so I stayed down there. I called all my professors. I explained what I was doing. I said, ‘I’m not going to be there for the first two weeks.’ They all were very, I told them why, and they were all very accepting of that. So, I got home. I was worn out from driving this truck in Texas, and I remember getting home in like the morning or the night before and I left the next day. I literally just chucked as much stuff in a U-haul as I could, and my family was helping me get it all ready while I was on the truck. I remember, everybody cried. I’m probably gonna cry just talking about it, because it was so many unknowns, and I just drove myself out to Tennessee. It was very emotional for me, obviously, just seeing that Tennessee state line sign and being scared to death, but knowing that’s what I had to do.”

     

    Audio / Darius Rucker recalls one of his worst jobs before turning to music.

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    Darius Rucker (Labor Day) OC: …pizza. :15
    “I was fifteen, and I worked at a pizza place, and the guy decided that at fifteen, that I could not only clean the floors and wash the dishes, but I also had to make pizza. So, for two months, he taught me how to make pizza.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley makes a living performing for his fans, and he can’t say enough about them.

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    Dierks Bentley (Labor Day) OC: …generosity. :26
    “Personally, the fans give me amazement. That’s the only word to really sum it up. I look out in the crowd, you know, usually see a lot of faces and fans are cheering. I know each one of these like from the road-the signs are from California…Michelle and Kayla live up in the Ohio area. They’re all, I just see them, and I’m like, ‘Wow!,’ they’re all from different regions. You know when you’re in a different region of the country and you just see certain fans. These people are way more hard core than I am, and I’m just amazed by their generosity.”

    Audio / Eric Church talks about one of his worst job.

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    Eric Church (Labor Day-odd jobs) OC: …bought at 2am. 1:27
    “I had an awful job. I’ve had a lot of awful jobs…my worst one was when I first came to Nashville. I got a job at the Shop at Home Network. I worked midnight, graveyard, midnight to eight. That was bad enough but then I would work all night, go home, shower and then I had writing appointments all day because I was trying to get a career started. I’d go write songs and get meetings just trying to get signed. And end up getting done at 3 of 4 with all of that, I’d go home, take a shower or sleep for a little bit and then I had to be at work again at midnight. So the schedule was bad enough, however, what I had to do at the job…I sold knives from midnight to 7 or 8am. And, anytime somebody calls you at 3 or 4am and needs 200 knives for $19.95, it’s automatically an alarming situation. And I just, I was young and I’d been in a lot of these people’s shoes, I had done this…I knew they were drunk. I knew what they had done. They’d just come home from the bar, flipped on Shop at Home and said, ‘You know what? I need that.’ So the reason the job didn’t last long for me is that I was maybe the worst salesmen in history because I ended up talking a lot of these people out of it, I’d say, ‘I’ll tell you what man, go to bed, call me, I’ll be here in the morning. If you get up in the morning and want these knives you call me back.’ Because I knew what was going to happen, you know. They bought 200 knives for $19.95…first of all some of these people you didn’t know whether you should call the cops. What do you need 200 knives for? Even though I’m selling them…what do you need them for? So, it was awful doing that job. And then they got rid of me because, they were like, ‘You’re the worst. I can’t believe you’re talking people out of it.’ I was like, ‘Man I know…I’ve been there.’ [laughs] I’d want some to talk me out of buying some of the stuff I’ve bought at 2am.”

    Audio / Jon Pardi talks about his worst job, which was at a grocery store.

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    Jon Pardi (Labor Day) OC: …so bored! :17
    “The worst job I ever had was at Hometown Grocery Store. I didn’t want to work. I was 15, and I did not want to work at the grocery store. Bagging was fun, but they sent me down the aisles to pull up cans and turn ‘em around and face ‘em, and I would just get so bored!”

    Audio / Jordan Davis, whose debut single is making its way up the country charts, talks about his worst job.

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    Jordan Davis (Labor Day) OC: …worst job. :41
    “[My] worst job was probably whenever I got out of school I started working for an environmental group in Baton Rouge, and I was doing actual environmental work at first. I went to my boss probably about four months in and told him that I was going to move to Nashville and write songs. Luckily enough, he let me stay on, but I became the weedeater guy for the landscaping side of the business. I seriously weedeated eight hours a day. The only break I would get would be in-between yard to yard. So, like we would be in the car and I would try to doze off for like 10 minutes. I was covered in grass in the middle of the summer in Baton Rouge. It was awful. That was definitely the worst job.”

    Audio / Keith Urban talks about performing for fans.

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    Keith Urban (Labor Day) OC: …amazing. :22
    “Seeing people connect to the music is absolutely, hands-down the biggest reward for me, especially when you go to a place you’ve never been to before and it’s all these people, I mean lots of people out there. You’ve never met a single one of ‘em and they’re singing every word, and you realize that it’s not just a pretty melody and everything, but they get the songs. It’s amazing.”

    Audio / Kip Moore recalls his worst job...ever.

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    Kip Moore (Labor Day-worst job) OC: …than that. :21
    “I’d have to say my worst job ever was laying sod in the south Georgia heat. There’s nothing than that, especially when somebody would think that you’re waiting for the next sod patch to be thrown to you and you got your back turned, and all of a sudden, that big ole piece of sod hits you right on the back. You got nowhere to clean up, and you’re just stuck with dirt on your back for the rest of the day. It doesn’t get any worse than that.”

    Audio / Charles Kelley of Lady Antebellum tells us what he used to do to make a buck before finding success as a musician.

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    Lady A (Labor Day) OC: …I had a lot of crummy jobs. :31
    CK “I used to…” HS: “… knock out asbestos walls.” CK: “I did that for a long time. But even before that, I used to do lawn care every summer. Oh, man, I do not miss that. Just glad those days are over. I get out here and play music for a living. It’s a lot more fun. But yeah, I used to do that, and I used to work as a bag boy at a golf course once. I did that for a couple of summers. I had a lot of crummy jobs.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan talks about the different jobs he worked in and around Leesburg, Georgia, before heading to Nashville to pursue a career in music.

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    Luke Bryan (Labor Day-jobs) OC: …Nashville… 1:07
    “At age 12 thru 13, I worked at Rubos IGA Supermarket in Leesburg, GA. I worked during the summers on Monday and Tuesday. I stocked and cleaned up the produce.  They paid me under the table…I peeled off all of the brown lettuce. Let’s see, when I was 15, I was a cashier at K-Mart for two months. I worked at K-Mart for two months, and then I reverted back to Rubos because it didn’t really make sense for me to drive all the way into Albany and work for K-Mart. The benefits were great though-you’d get an hour-long on the blue light special. So I started back at Rubos, and then I quit Rubos and worked for my Dad-just awful just driving tractors through cotton all day, and spraying pesticides that eventually would turn your hair green. And then at some point, I started playing guitar. And well, after college I went back and worked for my dad and continued to spray and haul fertilizer around. And then I moved to Nashville…”

    Audio / Travis Denning has never had another job other than playing music.

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    Travis Denning (Labor Day) OC: …right for it. :13
    “I’ve always played music. I mean, my first gig was when I was 16-years-old. That was what I did. And as soon as I found out I could make money doing it, I thought I’d much rather make money doing this than anything else, so I went right for it.”

  • LABOR DAY 2018 LINERS: Billy, Brandon, Brothers, Carrie, Clare, Darius, Eric, Jon, Jordan, Kacey, Keith, Kip, LBT, Luke, Maddie & Tae, Sam, Travis

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    LINER Billy Currington (Labor Day)
    Hey y’all! It’s Billy Currington, wishing you a very happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Brandon Lay (Labor Day)
    Hey y’all! This is Brandon Lay, wishing you a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Brothers Osborne (Labor Day)
    This is TJ, and I’m John, and we are Brothers Osborne, wishing you a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Carrie Underwood (Labor Day Weekend)
    Hey everyone! I’m Carrie Underwood, hoping you have a happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Clare Dunn (Labor Day)
    Hey! What’s up? This is Clare Dunn, and I hope you have a Happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Darius Rucker (Labor Day)
    Hey! It’s Darius Rucker, and I hope you have a have a happy work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Eric Church (Labor Day)
    Hey! It’s Eric Church, and I hope you have a have a happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Eric Paslay (Labor Day)
    Hey! It’s Eric Paslay, and I hope you have a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Jon Pardi (Labor Day weekend)
    Hey! It’s Jon Pardi, and I hope you have a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Jordan Davis (Labor Day)
    Hey! I’m Jordan Davis, wishing you a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Kacey Musgraves (Labor Day weekend)
    Hey! It’s Kacey Musgraves, hoping you have a happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Keith Urban (Labor Day weekend)
    Hi everybody! This is Keith Urban, wishing you a very happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Kip Moore (Labor Day)
    Hey—what’s happening guys? This is Kip Moore, wishing you a happy and work-free Labor Day Weekend.

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    LINER LBT (Labor Day)
    Hi! We’re Little Big Town, hoping you have a work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Luke Bryan (Labor Day)
    Hey! It’s Luke Bryan, and I hope you have a have a happy Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Maddie & Tae (Labor Day)
    Hey everybody! I’m Maddie, and I’m Tae, and we’re Maddie & Tae, hoping you have a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Sam Hunt (Labor Day)
    Hey everybody! I’m Sam Hunt. Have a great and work-free Labor Day weekend.

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    LINER Travis Denning (Labor Day)
    Hey y’all. It’s Travis Denning, hoping you have a happy and work-free Labor Day weekend.