• CARRIE UNDERWOOD CRY PRETTY ALBUM AUDIO TOOLKIT

    Click here to download the Carrie Underwood Cry Pretty Album Audio Toolkit.

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Luke, Carrie, Eric, AJ, Strait

    Luke Bryan and Carrie Underwood have earned American Music Awards nominations. Luke is up for Favorite Male Artist Country, while Carrie is nominated for Favorite Female Artist Country. The 2018 American Music Awards will broadcast live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on October 9th at 8pm ET on ABC.

    Eric Church was just announced as one of the performers at the 12th annual Stand4Heroes event at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York on November 5th. Bruce Springsteen, Seth Meyers, Jim Gaffigan, Jon Stewart and many special guests will also participate. Tickets go on sale Thursday (September 13th) at Noon ET.

    UMG Nashville has teamed up with the Gaither Music Group to create a new Gaither Gospel Series titled Country Gospel Collection. The first volume will include classic country gospel songs from some of the biggest names, including Alan Jackson and George Strait, as well as songs by Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, Glen Campbell and Conway Twitty, among others. Country Gospel Collection Volume 1 will be released October 5th.

    Country Gospel Collection Volume 1 Track List:

    1. Just A Closer Walk With Thee- Patsy Cline
    2. How Great Thou Art- Alan Jackson
    3. What A Friend We Have In Jesus- Glen Campbell
    4. Shall We Gather At The River- Tennessee Ernie Ford
    5. Take My Hand Precious Lord- Roy Acuff
    6. I Saw The Light- Hank Williams
    7. Will The Circle Be Unbroken- George Jones
    8. In The Garden- Loretta Lynn
    9. You’ll Never Walk Alone- Conway Twitty
    10. Peace In The Valley- Johnny Cash
    11. I Saw God Today- George Strait
    12. Amazing Grace- The Statler Brothers
  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD RELEASES VIDEO FOR “LOVE WINS” AND ANNOUNCES TELEVISION APPEARANCES.

    Multi-platinum-selling global superstar Carrie Underwood released the official music video for her new single “Love Wins.”  The powerful, uplifting and colorful video was directed by Shane Drake. Carrie co-wrote “Love Wins” with David Garcia and Brett James and is the new single from her highly-anticipated studio album, Cry Pretty, available on Friday (September 14th). In addition, Carrie co-wrote eight other songs on Cry Pretty, which she co-produced alongside David Garcia.

    “This song is hopeful,” says Carrie. “It’s saying no matter who you are, what you feel, what you think, we’re all human beings. We all deserve love. We all deserve respect and we all should try to show that to one another.”

    Cry Pretty has already received early media praise. Rolling Stone declares Underwood as “arena country’s mightiest voice, as Cry Pretty reaffirms” and Entertainment Weekly calls Cry Pretty “her most emotionally accessible work to date.”

    Carrie has scheduled several appearances in promotion of Cry Pretty. She’ll perform on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Thursday (September 13th) followed by the Today Show Summer Concert Series on Friday (September 14th), CBS Sunday Morning (September 15th) and The Ellen Show (September 19th). On September 20th, she will receive her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and will perform at the upcoming iHeart Radio Music Festival on September 22nd in Las Vegas.

    You can pre-order the album here.


    Cry Pretty
    Track List:

    1. Cry Pretty (Carrie Underwood, Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna, Liz Rose)
    2. Ghosts On The Stereo (Hillary Lindsey, Tom Douglas, Andrew Dorff)
    3. Low (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    4. Backsliding (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    5. Southbound (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Josh Miller)
    6. That Song That We Used To Make Love To (Hillary Lindsey, Jason Evigan)
    7. Drinking Alone (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Brett James)
    8. The Bullet (Marc Beeson, Andy Albert, Allen Shamblin)
    9. Spinning Bottles (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    10. Love Wins (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Brett James)
    11. End Up With You (Hillary Lindsey, Brett McLaughlin, Will Weatherly)
    12. Kingdom (Carrie Underwood, Chris DeStefano, Dave Barnes)

    Produced by David Garcia and Carrie Underwood

    Bonus Track – The Champion (featuring Ludacris) (Carrie Underwood, Brett James, Chris DeStefano, Christopher Bridges) Produced by Jim Jonsin.

    Carrie will launch her new arena trek, The Cry Pretty Tour 360, May 1st in Greensboro, North Carolina and will play 55 arenas across the U.S. and Canada. She’ll be joined on tour by special guests Maddie & Tae and Runaway June.

    Before she hits the road, she will co-host the CMA Awards for the 11th consecutive year.

    Audio / Carrie Underwood talks about how she, David Garcia and Brett James came up with the concept of “Love Wins.”

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    Carrie Underwood (Love Wins) 1 OC: …than just us. 1:00

    “’Love Wins’ started out with a track and sometimes when you listen to music you’re like well this song this is inspiring. This is hopeful. This is joyous. This is that kind of song. And Brett said this music needs some grand title, like ‘Love Wins.’ And I was like okay, let’s write that. And the three of us are me and Brett and David, we’re all religious beings. We all believe in a higher power. I feel like we kind of all are on the same page-ish as far as that goes. But we wanted to write this song acknowledging a broken world. We’ve always been a broken world. We’ll always be a broken world, but there’s something about the human spirit that whether you are religious or not we all have that sense that there’s more than just right here, more than just us.”

    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Love Wins) 1

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    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Love Wins) 2

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    Video / Carrie Underwood Love Wins

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  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD, LITTLE BIG TOWN’S KAREN FAIRCHILD AND KIMBERLY SCHLAPMAN WILL BE AMONG A HANDFUL OF WOMEN BEING CELEBRATED AT CMT’S ARTISTS OF THE YEAR.

    In a salute to the women of country music, Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town’s Karen Fairchild and Kimberly Schlapman will be honored at this year’s CMT’s annual Artists of the Year special, along with Miranda Lambert, Kelsea Ballerini, Maren Morris and Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott.

    “This year, we’re evolving the special to reflect what’s happening right now in culture and in the lives of our fans,” says Leslie Fram, Senior Vice President of Music & Talent at CMT, in a press release. “In this monumental year for women, dedicating one of the biggest nights in the genre to applaud female country artists not only solidifies our commitment, but we hope will spark a much-needed change in the industry,” says Leslie Fram, Senior Vice President of Music & Talent at CMT.

    CMT will fully turn its focus to supporting the Artists of the Year showcase by dedicating a full day of airtime to a “Woman of Country” takeover across the network’s various broadcast and digital platforms.

    The list of performers for the show will be announced soon.

  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD WILL RECEIVE A STAR ON THE HOLLYWOOD WALK OF FAME.

    Carrie Underwood will receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame next week, becoming the 2,646th star. The ceremony will take place at 1750 North Vine Street in front of Capitol Records on September 20th.

    Carrie will be honored by Simon Cowell, who was a judge on American Idol when she won during Season 4, as well as Brad Paisley, with whom she will co-host the CMA Awards for an 11th time this year.

    The ceremony will be webcast live at http://www.walkoffame.com and on Variety.

    Carrie, who has won seven Grammy Awards, six CMAs, 14 ACMs and 12 American Music Awards, will release her new studio album, Cry Pretty, on Friday (September 14th). The collection includes her new single, “Love Wins,” which was released today (September 11th).

  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD PREPARES TO RELEASE HER NEW ALBUM, CRY PRETTY, THIS WEEK.

    Carrie Underwood is preparing to release her new studio album, Cry Pretty, on Friday (September 14th). Her most personal collection to date, Cry Pretty, features 9 songs co-written by Carrie, including the title track and the bonus song, “The Champion,” which was used for 2018’s Super Bowl and the Winter Olympics.

    In her first official role as co-producer, alongside David Garcia, Carrie says it was truly a collaborative effort between them.

    “I have ideas in my head, but I’m trying to explain to him, ‘I’m picturing it like this. What if we added more this, took this away and changed the song up and half this chorus and made this happen,’” says Carrie. “He was always so great to listen to my ideas, of course, collaborate with me, bounce ideas off each other, and then he was good at executing technically what I was trying to say, because I knew how I wanted it to sound and I feel like he respected me as an artist. So, it was just really great working with him and truly collaborate.”

    In Spring 2019, Underwood will launch a new arena tour, The Cry Pretty Tour 360. Sponsored by CALIA, the new tour will kick off on May 1 in Greensboro, NC, and will play 55 arenas across the U.S. and Canada and be promoted by AEG Presents.  She will be joined on tour by special guests Maddie & Tae and Runaway June.

    Cry Pretty Track List:

    1. Cry Pretty (Carrie Underwood, Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna, Liz Rose)
    2. Ghosts On The Stereo (Hillary Lindsey, Tom Douglas, Andrew Dorff)
    3. Low (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    4. Backsliding (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    5. Southbound (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Josh Miller)
    6. That Song That We Used To Make Love To (Hillary Lindsey, Jason Evigan)
    7. Drinking Alone (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Brett James)
    8. The Bullet (Marc Beeson, Andy Albert, Allen Shamblin)
    9. Spinning Bottles (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Hillary Lindsey)
    10. Love Wins (Carrie Underwood, David Garcia, Brett James)
    11. End Up With You (Hillary Lindsey, Brett McLaughlin, Will Weatherly)
    12. Kingdom (Carrie Underwood, Chris DeStefano, Dave Barnes)
    13. The Champion ((Carrie Underwood, Brett James, Chris DeStefano, Christopher Bridges PKA Ludacris) Produced by Jim Jonsin)

    Produced by David Garcia and Carrie Underwood

    Audio / Carrie Underwood talks about co-producing Cry Pretty with David Garcia.

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    Carrie Underwood (coproducing with David) OC: …outs of things. :43
    David and I had a really great relationship as far as being around each other and writing with each other. I feel like we always had lots to talk about, and I feel like even though we grew up in different places, we kind of grew up the same. So. there was that, just all of that just made for a really comfortable environment. And I remember in the beginning, we’re both sizing each other up as producers, not in any kind of weird way but it’s like okay what’s our role? What’s both of our roles here? This is my first time sitting behind the board. I feel like I’ve always been creative in the production sense with this is what I want it to sound like, but I never really knew how to make it sound like that; the technical ins and outs of things.”

    Audio / Carrie Underwood says she and co-producer David Garcia worked well together in making her new album, Cry Pretty.

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    Carrie Underwood (coproducing with David) 2 OC: …collaborate. :38
    “I have ideas in my head, but I’m trying to explain to him, ‘I’m picturing it like this. What if we added more this, took this away and changed the song up and half this chorus and made this happen.’ He was always so great to listen to my ideas, of course, collaborate with me, bounce ideas off each other, and then he was good at executing technically what I was trying to say, because I knew how I wanted it to sound and I feel like he respected me as an artist. So, it was just really great working with him and truly collaborate.”

    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (available this week)

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  • CARRIE UNDERWOOD IS BACK FOR THE OPENING OF NBC’S SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL.

    Carrie Underwood is back in the “game” for her sixth season of performing the theme song for Sunday Night Football. The international superstar co-wrote the new opening tune, “Game On,” with frequent collaborators, Brett James and Chris DeStefano.

    “We wrote a new song for it, because I feel like they’re always open to that, and they’re always looking for ways to freshen things up,” says Carrie. “So, they always just say, ‘Hey! If you’ve got anything else back there, whatever you’re working on, bring it. We’ll see how we feel about it.’ This year we wrote a song called ‘Game On’ for the opening, and it was just a lot of fun. It’s a lot of fun getting to be a part of football. I grew up watching football, of course, and watching Sunday Night Football, and to just to have kind of a little part to the whole thing is pretty cool and pretty special.”

    You can watch the new opening Sunday night (September 9th) as the Green Bay Packers play host to the Chicago Bears beginning at 8pm ET on NBC. Check out the promo and the behind-the-scenes videos below.

    The 10 players that will be featured on the Sunday Night Football opening theme with Carrie this year include star players from the Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants, Pittsburgh Steelers, Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota Vikings and the Seattle Seahawks.

    Here are the list of players:

     

    Carrie is currently preparing to release her new album, Cry Pretty, on September 14th.

    Audio / Carrie Underwood talks about the new opening theme song "Game On" for Sunday Night Football.

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    Carrie Underwood (Sunday Night Football theme-6th year) OC: …pretty special. :41
    “I was so excited to be asked back to sing the opening for Sunday Night Football. This is the sixth year that I’ve been lucky enough to do it. We wrote a new song for it, because I feel like they’re always open to that and they’re always looking for ways to freshen things up. So, they always just say, ‘Hey! If you’ve got anything else back there, whatever you’re working on, bring it. We’ll see how we feel about it.’ This year we wrote a song called ‘Game On’ for the opening, and it was just a lot of fun. It’s a lot of fun getting to be a part of football. I grew up watching football, of course, and watching Sunday Night Football, and to just to have kind of a little part to the whole thing is pretty cool and pretty special.”

    Video / SNF 2018 promo

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  • CMA AWARDS 2018: THE REACTIONS.

    The CMA nominations were announced Tuesday morning (August 28th), and Luke Bryan is once again nominated for CMA Entertainer of the Year, having won the award twice previously. He says he still has to pinch himself when he thinks about having two of those trophies on his mantel.

    Keith Urban is nominated for three CMA Awards this year, including Entertainer, Male Vocalist and Album of the Year for Graffiti U. He took to his socials to do what he does best — perform his thank yous for all of the nominations. He said, “[It was] an amazing way to wake up and start the day. I love making music, simple as that. I love making music, and to get to make Graffiti U and have the support that it’s gotten and especially to see that this morning in action, that’s an incredible feeling. So to everybody that made that possible, thank you. Thank you very much.”

    Little Big Town just finished up their Bandwagon Tour over the weekend and woke up to a Vocal Group of the Year nomination. The band has won this award for the past five years.

    Lady Antebellum has won the award for Vocal Group of the Year THREE times; from 2009 through 2011.

     

    Maddie & Tae, who are up for Vocal Duo of the Year said it was a nice surprise to wake up to this morning.

    Kacey Musgraves had a pair of nominations, including Female Vocalist of the Year and Album of the Year for Golden Road.

    Brothers Osborne earns another nomination for Vocal Duo of the Year, as well as a nod for Musical Event of the Year for “Burnin’ Man” with Dierks Bentley.

     

    Lauren Alaina is nominated for New Artist of the Year, and while she’s going through a difficult time with her family, this nomination came in at the right time.

     

    The 52nd Annual CMA Awards, hosted by Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, will be broadcast live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena November 14th at 8pm ET on ABC.



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  • THE 2018 CMA NOMINATIONS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED.

    Luke Bryan, Dan + Shay and Sugarland announced the final nominations for The 52nd Annual CMA Awards this morning (August 28th) live on ABC’s Good Morning America from Luke’s 32 Bridge Food + Drink bar located on Lower Broadway in downtown Nashville.

    The artists revealed six categories live on-air, then announced the remaining six categories, along with finalists for the CMA Broadcast Awards, on GoodMorningAmerica.com as well as via “Good Morning America’s” Facebook page through Facebook Live, Twitter and simulcast on “Good Morning America’s” YouTube channel.

    Chris Stapleton tops the list of finalists with five nominations. Producer and musician Dann Huff receives four nominations, the second most nominations this year, while nine artists garner three each—Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Dan + Shay, Florida Georgia Line, Chris Janson, Miranda Lambert, Midland, Thomas Rhett and Keith Urban.

    CHRIS STAPLETON – FIVE NOMINATIONS
    Entertainer of the Year, Single of the Year (“Broken Halos”), Album of the Year (From A Room: Volume 2), Song of the Year (“Broken Halos”), Male Vocalist of the Year 

    Stapleton leads this year’s CMA Awards nominations with five, adding to his previous 11 nominations and seven wins. He lands his third consecutive nod for Entertainer of the Year in addition to nominations in the Single and Song of the Year categories for “Broken Halos,” produced by Dave Cobb and Stapleton, mixed by Vance Powell, and written by Mike Henderson and Stapleton. Stapleton earns his third nomination for Album of the Year for From A Room: Volume 2, produced by Cobb and Stapleton. He previously won Album for his first two solo albums, Traveller, awarded in 2015, and From A Room: Volume 1, awarded in 2017. Stapleton also receives his fourth consecutive nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year, a category he remains undefeated in, having won the past three years.

    DIERKS BENTLEY – THREE NOMINATIONS
    Album of the Year (The Mountain), Male Vocalist of the Year, Musical Event of the Year (“Burning Man”)

    Dierks Bentley earns his sixth career nomination for Album of the Year, alongside producers Ross Copperman, Jon Randall Stewart, and Arturo Buenahora Jr., while also marking his fifth consecutive nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year. He also lands a nod alongside Brothers Osborne for Musical Event of the Year for their collaboration “Burning Man,” Bentley’s third nomination in the category. He won Musical Event in 2016 for his song “Different For Girls” (Feat. Elle King). With this year’s nominations, Bentley collects 24 total career nominations.

    KEITH URBAN – THREE NOMINATIONS
    Entertainer of the Year, Album of the Year (Graffiti U), Male Vocalist of the Year

    This year marks Keith Urban’s 14th nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year, 11th nomination in the Entertainer of the Year category, and his sixth nomination in the Album of the Year category for Graffiti U, bringing his career nominations to 45 with 11 total wins. Urban shares the nomination with the album’s producers Dan McCarroll, J.R. Rotem, Josh Kerr, Jason Evigan, Greg Wells, Benny Blanco, Ed Sheeran, Johnny McDaid, Jesse Shatkin, Jimmy Robbins, Oscar Holter, Matt Rad, Eric Valentine, Ian Kirkpatrick, Mike Elizondo, Captain Cuts, Copperman, Huff, and Peter Karlsson. Urban is the reigning Single of the Year winner for his song “Blue Ain’t Your Color,” which he also produced.

    The 52nd Annual CMA Awards, hosted by Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, will be broadcast live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena November 14th at 8pm ET on ABC.

    For more information and a full list of nominees, visit CMAawards.com.

    The Final Nominees for “The 52nd Annual CMA Awards” (by ballot category order):

    ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR
    Jason Aldean
    Luke Bryan
    Kenny Chesney
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban

    SINGLE OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist, Producer(s), and Mix Engineer(s))

    Broken Halos – Chris Stapleton
    Producer(s): Dave Cobb, Chris Stapleton
    Mix Engineer(s): Vance Powell

    Drinkin’ Problem – Midland
    Producer(s): Dann Huff, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne
    Mix Engineer(s): Justin Niebank

    Drowns the Whiskey – Jason Aldean (Feat. Miranda Lambert)
    Producer(s): Michael Knox
    Mix Engineer(s): Jeff Braun

    Meant to Be – Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line
    Producer(s): Willshire
    Mix Engineer(s): Serban Ghenea

    Tequila – Dan + Shay
    Producer(s): Scott Hendricks, Dan Smyers
    Mix Engineer(s): Jeff Juliano

    ALBUM OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist and Producer(s))

    From a Room: Volume 2Chris Stapleton
    Golden HourKacey Musgraves
    Graffiti UKeith Urban
    Life ChangesThomas Rhett
    The MountainDierks Bentley

    SONG OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Songwriter(s))

    “Body Like A Back Road”
    Songwriters: Zach Crowell, Sam Hunt, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne

    “Broken Halos”
    Songwriters: Mike Henderson, Chris Stapleton

    “Drowns the Whiskey”
    Songwriter: Brandon Kinney, Jeff Middleton, Josh Thompson

    “Drunk Girl”
    Songwriter: Scooter Carusoe, Tom Douglas, Chris Janson

    “Tequila”
    Songwriter: Nicolle Galyon, Jordan Reynolds, Dan Smyers

    FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
    Kelsea Ballerini
    Miranda Lambert
    Kacey Musgraves
    Maren Morris
    Carrie Underwood

    MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR
    Dierks Bentley
    Luke Combs
    Thomas Rhett
    Chris Stapleton
    Keith Urban

    VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR
    Lady Antebellum
    Lanco
    Little Big Town
    Midland
    Old Dominion

    VOCAL DUO OF THE YEAR
    Brothers Osborne
    Dan + Shay
    Florida Georgia Line
    Maddie & Tae
    Sugarland

    MUSICAL EVENT OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to each Artist)

    “Burning Man” – Dierks Bentley Feat. Brothers Osborne
    “Dear Hate” – Maren Morris (Feat. Vince Gill)
    “Drowns the Whiskey” – Jason Aldean (Feat. Miranda Lambert)
    “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” – David Lee Murphy (with Kenny Chesney)
    “Meant to Be” – Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line

    MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR
    (Award goes to Artist and Director(s))

    “Babe” – Sugarland (Featuring Taylor Swift)
    Director: Anthony Mandler

    “Cry Pretty” – Carrie Underwood
    Director: Randee St. Nicholas

    “Drunk Girl” – Chris Janson
    Director: Jeff Venable

    “Marry Me” – Thomas Rhett
    Director: TK McKamy

    “Tequila” – Dan + Shay
    Director: Patrick Tracy

    NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR
    Lauren Alaina
    Luke Combs
    Chris Janson
    Midland
    Brett Young

    MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR
    Jerry Douglas, Dobro
    Paul Franklin, Steel Guitar
    Dann Huff, Guitar
    Mac McAnally, Guitar
    Derek Wells, Guitar

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Audio / LUKE BRYAN SAY WINNING HIS FIRST CMA ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR AWARD CHANGED HIS LIFE.

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    Luke Bryan (winning 1st CMA Entertainer of the Year) OC: …big deal for me. :55
    “Definitely looking back and winning my first CMA Entertainer of the Year award is something that I’ll never forget. It’s all of those memories of everything it took to get here and all the sacrifices and all the honkytonks and the late-night concerts and moving to Nashville and leaving your family and your friends, it all came together on that night. To get that from your peers of fellow country music artists was pretty amazing. You never forget it. You forever feel vindicated and you feel appreciated and you feel like you’re a member of a club, and you know no matter how long you live that you left an indelible mark on this industry based on how you go about it, how you entertain and perform. It was a big deal for me.”

    Audio / KEITH URBAN PICKED UP HIS FIRST CMA MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR AWARD IN 2004, AND HE SAYS IT WAS A HUMBLING EXPERIENCE FOR HIM. HE WENT ON TO WIN THAT AWARD IN 2005 AND 2006.

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    Keith Urban (winning 1st Male Vocalist award) OC: …my life. :27
    “In 2004, I won Male Vocalist of the Year, and again it was that same feeling I had when I’d won the Horizon Award, but it was like the next level.  It just felt so humbling really. Really to be in that category and then to win was again just one of those sort of moments that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”

    Audio / Keith Urban explains why he felt the need to name his CMA nominated album, Graffiti U.

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    Keith Urban (Graffiti U name) OC: …that to me. :53
    “The previous two albums I did – Fuse and Ripcord – denoted a kind of energy, and so those titles were chosen for that. And I had some energy-driven titles in mind for this album too, but as the record started to reveal itself to me, the word ‘graffiti’ kept coming to me out of the blue. I’ve always loved that word, loved the sound of the word, and then I loved the fact that it’s art-driven. When I think of graffiti, I think of self-expression, personal expression, absolutely personal expression whether you’re painting something on the side of a building in a city or whether you’re painting ‘Billy Bob Loves Charlene’ on the side of an overpass [laughs], it’s all graffiti and it’s all free and pure and very personal, and I thought this record feels like that to me.”

    Audio / Dierks Bentley was inspired by Telluride to write and record his CMA nominated album, The Mountain.

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    Dierks Bentley (album inspired by Telluride) 2 OC: …it was magic. :53
    “I just had this crazy idea to bring some songwriters out there and let them go for hikes and walk around town and just hang and see if they can sense that same intangible vibe that I was sensing, and they did. We jumped right into it and it was really, really special. And everyone immediately starts talking about how can we start getting back out here again, because it’s one of those places you just like never want to leave. Ross said, ‘We should come back out here to make the record,’ and we all kinda laughed about it, but it planted the seed. So, I came back a few months later with a different set of guys and girls, musicians, and we recorded the album out there.” It’s one of those things where you just kind of follow your gut, just keep your heart open to ideas and see what you’re feeling, and once you get that little, tiny feeling, you’ve got to go for it, just like that gut instinct of I want to be a country singer. It’s that little seed that if you believe in it, you’ve got to go for it, try it, so that’s what we did with this album, and it was magic.”

    Audio / Kacey Musgraves talks about the title of her CMA nominated album, Golden Hour.

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    Kacey Musgraves (Golden Hour title) OC: …this record. :34
    “The title Golden Hour just seemed to sum up this chapter of my life perfectly. I mean not only am I from a town called Golden, Texas, but leading up to making this record, there’s been a lot of beauty in my atmosphere and in my world. I love the picture that pops in my head when I hear that title. It’s also an actual song on the record, but it’s just this warm, golden feeling that I’m really happy to have in my life, and I found it to be the perfect title for this record.”

  • 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.”