• LUKE BRYAN, DIERKS BENTLEY, DARIUS RUCKER AND MORE WILL TAKE PART IN THE CBS-TV SPECIAL, NEW YEAR’S EVE LIVE: NASHVILLE’S BIG BASH.

    Some of country music’s hottest superstars will ring in the new year when CBS presents NEW YEAR’S EVE LIVE: NASHVILLE’S BIG BASH, Friday, December 31st (8:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT, 11:30 PM-1:30 AM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network, and available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+.

    Originating from downtown Nashville across multiple locations, the star-studded special will be packed with high-energy performances celebrating the excitement and anticipation of a new year. First-announced performers include Dierks Bentley, Luke Bryan, Darius Rucker, Jason Aldean, Jimmie Allen, Kelsea Ballerini, Gabby Barrett, Brooks & Dunn, Dan + Shay, Elle King, Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton, Cole Swindell and Zac Brown Band, with additional artists to be announced at a later date.

    Music City has built an outstanding reputation for hosting the most musical New Year’s celebration and country’s biggest party. The five-hour celebration will feature nearly 50 performances from locations across the city, including the mainstage in Nashville’s Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park anchored by headliners Dierks Bentley, Zac Brown Band and Dan + Shay. The broadcast will cross multiple time zones, with the traditional countdown at midnight ET, culminating with the renowned Nashville music note drop and fireworks at midnight CT.

    NEW YEAR’S EVE LIVE: NASHVILLE’S BIG BASH is executive produced by Robert Deaton and Mary Hilliard Harrington in partnership with the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corp. The special will be directed by Sandra Restrepo.

  • THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF SEPTEMBER 11TH: Alan Jackson, Brandon Lay, Darius Rucker, Eric Church, Jordan Davis, Keith Urban, Lauren Alaina, Luke Bryan, Travis Denning

    On September 11, 2001, the world changed forever with the devastating attacks on both the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.  Alan Jackson’s “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)” embodied the thoughts and feelings of millions in the wake of the events that took place 20 years ago. (This Saturday is the 20th Anniversary of 9-11.)

    There is audio from country superstar Alan Jackson sharing memories and thoughts on the events of September 11, 2001 and discussing his song, “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning),” as well as remembrances from Darius Rucker, Eric Church, Gary Allan, Lauren Alaina, Luke Bryan, Keith Urban, Jordan Davis, Lauren Alaina and Travis Denning.

    The chorus and melody of “Where Were You…” came to Jackson in the middle of the night several weeks after the 9/11 tragedies. He awoke…sang the words into a recorder and wrote down key elements of the chorus…and completed the lyrics and verses later that same day. Initially reluctant to record the song, he was convinced by family and friends to share it with the world and debuted “Where Were You…” live on national television in early November at the 35th annual CMA Awards.

    “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning),” embodied the thoughts and feelings of millions in the wake of the 2001 events. Written by Jackson, the song was called “…one of the most touching, powerful songs to come after the tragedies” by USA Today and dubbed “a reflective hymn that Americans will be listening to well into the second half of this century” by Salon.comThe New York Times singled out “Where Were You…” as “one of his finest songs,” and Billboard noted “a multitude of songs have been written and recorded in the wake of September 11th, but none captures the myriad emotions unleashed by the terrorist attacks on an unsuspecting nation more perfectly than Jackson’s eloquent ballad.” The song went on to be honored with a Grammy, CMA and ACM Awards.

     

    Audio / Alan Jackson explains why he feels “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)” still resonates with music fans in concert 20 years after the events of September 11, 2001.

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    Alan Jackson (20th Anniversary of Sept 11) OC: …it all started. 1:24
    “Yeah, I mean it makes me feel really warm inside to know that that song and at the same time I feel a little bit surprised that it has lasted all this – these years. When I first wrote it, I didn’t think I would record it. And then we didn’t think it would ever – we would want to release it. At first I didn’t think I would ever write a song about the event because I just didn’t feel right about it and then this came out of nowhere and then it went on to be such an anthem for it for years. And now it’s kind of grown into just its own song outside of 9/11 where it’s just a song about faith and hope and love. And I see that in the crowds now. And a lot of my fans, younger fans weren’t hardly even around when 9/11 happened but they have connected with that song. And it’s one of the highlights of the show now and it’s just amazing that it has outlived where it really began. So, it can’t help but make me feel very proud that something like that has helped people through that hard time in the beginning and it still has a lasting affect outside of where it all started.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson describes how the events of September 11, 2001 impacted him…and talks about writing “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)” a few weeks later.

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    AJ (Where Were You) 2 OC: …same feelings. 1:33
    “Well, I don’t know – I think I was probably like most people that were impacted with that day and the months that followed. You know, everybody was glued to the news and television and I think it really affected a lot of people – their perspective on their lives and their jobs and their families and where they were and what they were wanting to do and how they looked at things. And I guess…I mean, that’s what I was thinking, too. And I just pretty much visualized a lot of those scenes and stories I’d heard and seen on television or heard people talk about. The song came out of nowhere in the middle of the night – the chorus did. Just a gift. And I got up and scribbled it down and put the melody down so I wouldn’t forget it, and then the next day I started piecing all those verses together that were the thoughts I’d had or visuals I’d had, and…that was about it. I think it was just really…I had so many people tell me that there’s always a line or something in there that they did, whether it was go to church or pick up their Bible or go see their mother or watch a sunset – I mean, just a lot of things in there people told me that they had actually done those things, so…I guess I was like everybody else, just feeling those same feelings.”

    Audio / Alan Jackson recalls sharing “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)” with all of us for the first time live on national television during the 35th Annual CMA Awards.

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    AJ (Where Were You) 3 OC: …meant something. :56
    “It was a tough performance for me. You know, just the whole idea of releasing that song was a little bit tough. I wasn’t sure I wanted to put that out, but everybody convinced me that it was the thing to do…and in retrospect, I agree with that. But, you know, I hadn’t really sung the song much, first of all. It was just in the studio, basically, and when I wrote it…so it’s hard to go out there and sing something new anyway, and just the topic made it nerve-wracking, too. You know, I didn’t think about what was going to happen or anything – we just sang it. And I just remember, other than being relieved that I got through it, I just felt very proud that it seemed to cause a reaction in people…and I was proud that I got to do it, and that it seemed like it meant something.”

    Audio / Brandon Lay remembers being in class in high school when he found out about the tragic events of 9-11.

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    Brandon Lay (9-11) OC: …changed forever. :52
    “I remember 9-11 very vividly. I was in Ms. Munn’s College Algebra class. It was a Tuesday. We happened to be able to bring breakfast, it was our day to bring breakfast to school that day, and Megan Smith was in my class and she came in and said something’s hit one of the towers in New York. There was a bomb or something. And the principal came and pulled Ms. Munn out in the hall and told her. From then on, we listened to some of the radio that day. Obviously, when we got home, we saw the replay of all that, and it was just unbelievable. I was in my sister’s Honda Accord – I had just got my driver’s license – and I went to go fill it up with gas and there was none, and I just remember thinking this country we live in now has just changed forever.”

    Audio / Darius Rucker recalls where he was on September 11th, 2001.

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    Darius Rucker (9-11) OC: …vicious day. :24
    “[On] 9-11, I was playing golf with a friend early in the morning. Had an apartment in New York, and I lived in New York kind of at the time. If you looked out my bedroom window, we saw the World Trade Center. I was on my way back home. I was playing a 7 o’clock round of golf, and then I was catching a noon flight, and when I was finishing up, we stopped in to get a drink and I looked and we saw the second tower come down. It was a vicious day.”

    Audio / Eric Church was on his way to work when he heard the news of the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001.

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    Eric Church (9-11) OC: …that feeling. :23
    “I was driving into work — the Shop-At-Home Network — I was listening to (WSIX’s) Gerry House, I remember that, and the news broke. [I] really couldn’t grasp what had happened until I got to work and saw it for myself on television. I remember I watched the second plane hit the tower in real time. I had just moved to Nashville earlier that year, and all I remember is wanting to go home and be with those I loved. I’ll never, I’ll never forget that feeling.”

    Audio / Gary Allan was across the pond on September 11th, 2001, and was stuck in London for almost three weeks until his flight attendant wife was able to get him on a plane to come home.

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    Gary Allan (September 11th) OC: …me outta there. 1:31
    “I can remember exactly where I was on 9-11. I had played in Switzerland the 10th at Gstaad and the band flew home and me and Jake Kelly flew to London to do a show on September 11th in a bar. I was in the BBC doing media, I was sitting there doing interviews, and they had glass walls and there were cubicles, so I could see through into other offices.  I remember looking over, they were showing the first plane fly into the building, and I said, ‘Are they editing movies over there?’ And they all kind of looked at me pretty serious and said, ‘No, that’s live.’  And that was right when the second plane flew in, and I said, ‘That’s live?! That’s the twin towers?” And they said, ‘Yes.’ And I remember looking at John, my manager, and said, ‘Man, let’s get out of here!’ And that’s when the U.S. put out a statement saying that nobody’s flying into the U.S. If it flies, it dies, don’t approach us right now was the whole message. And I got stuck there for three weeks watching the media. It was really crazy times, just nobody really knowing, ‘cause it took us a while to get our heads around what had actually happened, but it was scary. I got trapped there for a couple of weeks. I remember my wife Angela got me out before the record label did. I remember going to the airport and John, my manager, saying you’re wasting your time, you’re not going to get out of here, and my wife at the time was a flight attendant, and she said, ‘Go sit at this terminal.’ That’s when you could just walk in and sit by a terminal. And I went in and sat there and eventually this flight attendant came out and said, ‘Are you Gary?’ I said, ‘Yeah.’ She said, ‘Come on,’ and snuck me onto a plane and got me outta there.”

    Audio / Jordan Davis recalls what he was wearing and where he was on September 11th, 2001.

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    Jordan Davis (September 11th) OC: …happen again. :51
    “Yeah, I think I was in second period, Louisiana studies, Miss Porter was the teacher. I was wearing my football jersey ‘cause we had a football game that night. And I think back on that as like how many times in your life can you explain in that much detail what you were wearing? The number – I was number 11, it was a blue jersey, white lettering with yellow numbers. I’d never had anything just hit me that (hard) and just be that scary. But I remember just for the rest of the day, there was no school. I mean, we obviously stayed there, but nobody was teaching. Every TV was on and everybody was glued to it. I don’t know, it was just something that I still kinda get chillbumps about now thinking back on it. It’s one of those things that you pray never to happen again.”

    Audio / Keith Urban recalls being on the beach in Florida on September 11, 2001 and felt there was a really eerie feeling in the air, before heading back to his rental house and finding out what happened that would change the world forever.

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    Keith Urban (September 11th) OC: …lot of people. 1:14
    “Yeah, I was in Florida. We had just played a show on the night, either the 9th, I think it might have been the 9th or the 10th, somewhere around there. It was right before it. And then we decided to stay down and have a few days vacation on the beach down there and I remember that morning. I didn’t turn the news on and I was really grateful that I didn’t because I had a few extra hours before I was aware of this reality that was going on that would change everything. But the beach was deserted, and it was an eerie, ominous feeling in the air and I couldn’t put my finger on it. when we ended up going back to the house that we were renting we put the news on and that was the first time I saw what was happening and I couldn’t take it in. It was too surreal. Couldn’t fly anywhere. I had to send my tour bus to come down and get me and then bus all the way back to Nashville. My mom was staying with me at the time, and she was panicked and worried about me being away and was anxious for me to get home. It was a very, it was a really, really surreal traumatic time for a lot of people.”

    Audio / Lauren Alaina was just a little girl when the tragic events took place on September 11th, 2001, but she remembers feeling very scared when her father picked her up at school and explained what happened.

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    Lauren Alaina (September 11th) OC: …very scared. 1:11
    “I was in first grade when 9-11 happened. I don’t have a ton of memories from that time period, but I do specifically remember 9-11, because my father came and picked me up at school which never, ever happened. Like I didn’t miss school, but I didn’t totally understand what was going on. My father explained it to us, and we went to the house. I think he just wanted our family to be together ‘cause it was so devastating and so scary, and nobody knew what was actually happening. And I just remember as a little girl knowing how serious it was. I didn’t know what was going on, but I remember my dad cried and it really affected my dad and little girls don’t see their dads cry very often, and I remember thinking this is not good. This is not good. For both of my parents to come home from work and for us to all be at home in the middle of the day, I just remember being seven years old being very confused and very scared.”

    Audio / Luke Bryan just moved to Nashville about 10 days before the devastating terror attacks on the twin towers in New York City and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001.

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    Luke Bryan (9-11 20th) OC: …when that happened. 1:01
    “So, as we come up on the 20th Anniversary of 9-11, certainly a life-changing event for me and it was really, really challenging for me because I had just moved to Nashville. I moved to Nashville September 1st, 2001 and I’m in an apartment by myself down in Franklin. I never will forget. I was in bed and my sister called and said, ‘Turn on the TV. A plane had flown into the World Trade Center.’ I remember kinda getting my wits about me, and I turned it on and like so many other people, I saw the second plane hit. And at that moment a lot of innocence is forever lost and that’s certainly when the world changed. And I remember almost getting in the car and going home and spending some time with my family, but I wound up kinda toughing it out in Nashville. But it was a challenging moment being away from your family when that happened.”

    Audio / Travis Denning recalls where he was, what he was doing and how worried he and his family were about his mother, who was in D.C. working out of the Pentagon on a worktrip on September 11th, 2001. Near the end of the soundbite, Travis gets a little emotional and the soundbite trails off.

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    Travis Denning (Sept. 11th) OC: …makes me…(emotional trailoff). 2:18
    “I was in Atlanta on a field trip and we were going to a shadow puppet play and we were actually currently making our own shadow puppets. I’m telling you, I can remember everything about this, and my teacher came in, Mr. Andy Payne who I went to church with and amazing guy, great guy, and he came into the room, the little workshop we were in and had to be 12:30p, one o’clock, and he just announced in the room, ‘Hey everybody. There’s been a change of plans. We’re not gonna go to the play, and we actually have to, we’re going to go back home.’ And we’re in Atlanta, so we’re an hour and a half from Warner Robbins. I walked past him, and I said, ‘Well, what’s going on?’ He didn’t even look at me. He just said, ‘Everybody, get your stuff and we’ll get back in the bus and we’ll get rolling.’ I thought that was pretty weird. We did not go back to the school. We got dropped off at a Chik-fil-a parking lot down the road from the school and all our parents were picking us up and cops were there, and then I remember just at that point something was very wrong. I remember my grandmother picked me up and took me to his house. My dad eventually got to the house. We did not turn on the TV until he got there, but as soon as he turned on the TV every channel had it on. And then it hit you like a freight train, and you just think we’re at war. And then it hits you why we left Atlanta is because nobody knew what was going on, and they thought Atlanta might be attacked. Just the overwhelming like uncertainty hit, and then just the worst part is it hits you that my mom is in D.C. She’s at the Pentagon, and the Pentagon was attacked and we couldn’t get ahold of my mom, but it worked out. It was all good  She was at the hotel. The impact blew out the windows at the hotel, but (pause) we couldn’t get ahold of her for a while, so…it’s weird. It’s still kinda like, makes me…(gets emotional)”

    Audio / Travis Denning continues talking about the events of 9-11 and eventually getting ahold of his mother.

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    Travis Denning (Sept. 11th) 2 OC: …that is nuts. :49
    “So, eventually my dad got ahold of my mom and she was like, ‘Oh yeah. It has hit the fan here. It is so bad.’ They actually walked down to a separate hotel and got onto the roof and they were able to see directly into the Pentagon and see the crash. Ultimately too, she was like, ‘Well, I’m not getting home any time soon.’ And she ended up renting a car and about two days later pulled up in a rental vehicle. I remember everything about it. It was just so nuts. Then going back to school and just everybody talking about it. And on top of that it felt like the kids and the teachers were equally so astonished. It is wild. It’s just crazy that 20 years is coming up. That is nuts.”

  • NEWS AND NOTES: Reba McEntire, Brothers Osborne, Chris Stapleton, Alan Jackson, Darius Rucker, George Strait, Mickey Guyton

    Tune in tonight (August 23rd) at 7pm ET/6pm CT for an exclusive look at Reba McEntire‘s new box set REVIVED REMIXED REVISTED in a special TalkShopLive conversation with TV host Nancy O’Dell. You’ll be able to pre-order the collection on vinyl with an autographed poster or on CD with an autographed booklet, as well.

    Brothers Osborne appeared on CBS This Morning to talk music and how life has changed for them.

     

    Chris Stapleton is scheduled to perform on NBC’s Late Night With Seth Meyers on Wednesday (August 23rd).

    Tune in Wednesday (August 25th) for CMT GIANTS: Charley Pride at 9pm ET/8pm CT on CMT. The 90-minute special will feature performances by Alan Jackson, Darius Rucker, George Strait, Mickey Guyton, Reba McEntire, son Dion Pride, Gladys Knight, Jimmie Allen, Lee Ann Womack, Luke Combs featuring Robert Randolph + Reyna Roberts, Garth Brooks and Wynonna celebrating the extraordinary life and legacy of the iconic Charley Pride.

    Alan Jackson has been added the lineup of performers for the 14th Annual Academy of Country Music Honors taking place on Wednesday (August 25th) at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium.  The event, which will also feature performances and appearances by Trace Adkins, Lauren AlainaDevin DawsonJessie Jo Dillon, Ronnie Dunn, Sara EvansNicolle Galyon, HARDY,  Chris Janson, Lady AAshley McBrydeCarly Pearce, RaeLynnJordan Reynolds, Brittney Spencer, Keith Urban, Laura Veltz, Sam Williams and Lee Ann Womack, will be livestreamed on Circle Network’s social channels – Circle All Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Circle Network will also air a television special around the 14th Annual Academy of Country Music Honors on Tuesday, November 23rd.

     

     

  • DARIUS RUCKER SURPASSES $2.5 MILLION RAISED FOR ST. JUDE CHILDREN’S RESEARCH HOSPITAL WITH 12TH ANNUAL “DARIUS & FRIENDS.”

    Nearly 15 years after first visiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital® where he was immediately inspired to pledge his support, three-time GRAMMY Award winner Darius Rucker continues to give back to the mission, surpassing the $2.5 million mark in his fundraising efforts with this year’s 12th annual “Darius & Friends” benefit concert on Tuesday night, preceded by his corresponding golf tournament and silent auction on Monday morning. This year’s event alone raised more than $410,000, bringing together a sold-out audience at the historic Ryman Auditorium with at-home fans watching via the Mandolin live stream.

    Reflecting on his first visit to the hospital in 2008 to the Tennessean ahead of this year’s show, Rucker noted, “You see these kids who are sick, and they’re so happy to be there, because their caregivers are so loving and giving to them. And then you find out that nobody ever gets a bill. That blew me away. I was just like, ‘We’ll figure out some way to help you guys as much as I can.’”

    Now, more than a decade later, that effort has become an annual tradition. The benefit concert, which typically serves as an unofficial kickoff to CMA Fest as fans descend on Music City each summer, was hosted virtually in 2020 due to the ongoing pandemic. In returning home to the iconic Ryman Auditorium this year, the live stream was also kept in place to allow fans at home to tune in alongside the sold-out audience who were treated to a surprise lineup of stars featuring Jason Aldean, Brothers Osborne, John Daly, Keb’ Mo’, Runaway June and Elvie Shane.

    After a silent auction and live donation round, Rucker kicked off the musical festivities with a trio of hits – his Platinum-certified No. 1s “This” and “For the First Time” followed by current single “My Masterpiece” – before introducing the first friends of the evening.

    “I’ve been in this town for 12 years and I’ve gotten to know a lot of people,” Rucker noted, “but some people you get to really know and they become family. These guys are family.” With that, the Ryman audience gave a rousing welcome to six-time GRAMMY nominees Brothers Osborne, who brought a high-energy performance of their hits “It Ain’t My Fault,” “I’m Not For Everyone” and “Shoot Me Straight.”

    “You’ve got to drop the name and tell the story, right?” said Rucker as he returned to the stage, sharing the tale behind an Ed Sheeran cowrite that resulted in brand new song “Sara,” a where-are-they-now ode to Rucker’s fifth grade girlfriend. He then thrilled the crowd with his Double Platinum-certified No. 1 “Alright” before introducing newcomer Elvie Shane, making his Ryman debut with an emotional performance of current Top 10 single “My Boy,” which drew a standing ovation from the audience, and keeping the crowd on their feet with upbeat anthem “Keep On Strummin’.”

    “I was working retail in the early Hootie days, selling records,” shared Rucker as he returned to the stage, “and this song by Nanci Griffith was playing one day. It blew my mind, and it started my love for Country music… Years later, my mom had a heart attack and went into a coma. I sat in that hospital room for eight hours and I sang this song over and over. This week Nanci died. She’s one of my great friends and I want to play this song because it means so much to me,” he noted, before performing an emotional rendition of “I Hope It Rains” in tribute to his late friend.

    Rucker then invited yet another surprise guest to the stage, sending the audience into a frenzy as he introduced legendary golfer John Daly. Together, they performed a rousing rendition of “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” before Rucker continued with his hits “Homegrown Honey” and “If I Told You” as well as Hootie & the Blowfish classic “Hold My Hand.”

    “I would do anything for him, and I know he’d do anything for me,” shared Rucker of his next guest, introducing three-peat ACM Entertainer of the Year Jason Aldean. “He did me dirty making me follow a Hootie song,” joked Aldean, before noting “Darius really is one of the nicest, coolest guys in town and so it’s a pleasure to be here, especially for St. Jude.”

    Sitting on a stool and accompanied by a single guitar player, Aldean thrilled the crowd with stripped-back versions of his 3x Platinum No. 1 hit “Big Green Tractor” and Gold-certified No. 1 “Any Ol’ Barstool.” Rucker then returned to the stage to perform “Radio” and Hootie hit “Only Wanna Be With You,” ahead of introducing the penultimate guest for the evening; five-time GRAMMY Award winner Keb’ Mo’, who wowed with “Rita” and “I Remember You” before inviting Rucker back for a duet of the Marvin Gaye classic “What’s Going On,” earning a sustained ovation from the crowd.

    Rucker kept the Hootie & the Blowfish nostalgia coming as he performed “Let Her Cry” under a single spotlight, accompanied by a violin and the chorus of a sold out Mother Church audience, before continuing the singalong with his latest No. 1 hit, “Beers And Sunshine.” He then introduced the final surprise guests of the evening, bringing trio Runaway June to the stage for their Ryman debut. The CMT “Next Women of Country” thrilled with their Top 5 hit “Buy My Own Drinks” and gave fans a preview of brand new music out this Friday with “T-Shirt” before inviting the audience to sing along for their rendition of the Tom Petty classic, “American Girl.”

    Rucker closed out the main entertainment of the evening with his Platinum-certified No. 1 “Come Back Song” before returning to the stage for an encore that included a cover of “Valerie,” with Rucker backed by the powerful vocals of his keys player’s wife, Tiffany Turner, and an upbeat performance of album cut “Hands On Me.” The evening then ended according to tradition, with Rucker joined by the sold-out Ryman crowd for a “Wagon Wheel” singalong, the feel-good energy throughout the auditorium symbolic of the night as a whole.

    This year’s milestone fundraising event adds yet another successful page to the decade-plus history of “Darius & Friends.” Prior guests have included Lauren Alaina, Brooks & Dunn, Kane Brown, Luke Bryan, Sheryl Crow, Ashley McBryde, A.J. McLean of the Backstreet Boys, Brad Paisley, Kenny Rogers and Paul Stanley of KISS, among many others.

    The annual fundraising event, made possible with support from generous sponsors PGA TOUR, CDW, Hendrix Enterprises, UMG, CAA, A. O. Smith, AMD, Arrow and Intel, helps ensure families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.

    For more information, visit www.DariusRucker.com and follow on social media @DariusRucker. Fans can also continue to donate to St. Jude in honor of “Darius & Friends” HERE and photos from the event are available HERE.

    Full “Darius & Friends” 2021 Set List:
    Darius Rucker: “This,” “For the First Time,” “My Masterpiece”
    Brothers Osborne: “It Ain’t My Fault,” “I’m Not For Everyone,” “Shoot Me Straight”
    Darius Rucker: “Sara,” “Alright”
    Elvie Shane: “My Boy,” “Keep On Strummin’”
    Darius Rucker: “I Hope It Rains”
    John Daly & Darius Rucker: “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door”
    Darius Rucker: “Homegrown Honey,” “If I Told You,” “Hold My Hand”
    Jason Aldean: “Big Green Tractor,” “Any Ol’ Barstool”
    Darius Rucker: “Radio,” “Only Wanna Be With You”
    Keb’ Mo’: “Rita,” “I Remember You, “What’s Going On” (with Darius Rucker)
    Darius Rucker: “Let Her Cry,” “Beers And Sunshine”
    Runaway June: “Buy My Own Drinks,” “T-Shirt,” “American Girl”
    Darius Rucker: “Come Back Song”
    Encore – Darius Rucker: “Valerie” (with Tiffany Turner), “Hands On Me,” “Wagon Wheel”

    Darius is currently making his way up the country charts with his latest song, “My Masterpiece.”

  • LABOR DAY AUDIO 2021

    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 6th, 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 their dream job now.

    To access artist liners, click here.

     

    Audio / Adam Hambrick talks about one of his summer jobs when he was growing up in Arkansas.

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    Adam Hambrick (Labor Day) OC: …that summer. :41
    “I don’t know if I’ve ever had a bad job. I don’t think I had a bad job, ‘cause I actually enjoyed this job ‘cause I was actually sitting in the air conditioning all day over the summer in Arkansas. It was very monotonous, because I was spending every summer day repairing old fallen-apart medical charts in a heart clinic in Little Rock. I would take all these photos of all these records and re-sort them page-by-page and put ‘em back in the manila folder and re-alphabetize ‘em. But I did bring my computer and watch movies while I did it, so I drank a lot of soda and watched a lot of movies that summer.”

    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 / Caylee Hammack says her worst job truly smelled bad.

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    Caylee Hammack (Labor Day-worst job) OC: …worst job. (laughs) :38
    “My worst job was working in a nursery, actually. I love kids so I thought I’d be really good at it, but wen you’re the new person coming in, you have to change all the diapers first. So, I was changing 45 diapers a day and it got to the point where everything smelled like baby poop. It literally drove me crazy. I would walk my dog and I would have to go to pick up her poop, and it would smell like baby poop, and I just couldn’t handle it, honestly. The smell of poop warded me away. The children were lovely, but the smell of poop lingered, and I couldn’t handle that job. That was my worst job.” (laughs)

    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 / GEORGE STRAIT’S CAREER HAS SPANNED DECADES AND 60 NO. 1 HITS, BUT HE CAN RECALL HEARING ONE OF HIS SONGS ON THE RADIO AND HOW COUNTRY RADIO HAS SUPPORTED HIM.

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    George Strait (first time on radio) OC: …records I’ve put out. :26
    “I took it to a radio station in San Antonio KKYX, and a guy named Jerry King put it on and played it while I ran out to the car to listen to it on the radio. So, it’s just been relationships like that through the years that I’ve had with different people. I don’t know, they’ve just supported me so much and have been very open to the records I’ve put out.”

    Audio / Jon Langston says he's just not cut out for cooking chicken, but he is made for performing on stage.

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    Jon Langston (Labor Day) OC: …is the bomb. :45
    “The worst job – it wasn’t bad – I could just say growing up and stuff and in high school, I was working for my dad. It was a great job, working at the shop. One day I got tired of working for my dad. I thought it’d be smart to go work for somebody else and so I went to work at Chik-fil-a for a family friend, and I’m just not made for cooking chicken. But, I told my dad, ‘Hey, can I come back to work?’ (laughs) So, yeah, I mean, Chik-fil-a a great place to work if you’re into that kind of thing, but not me. But Chik-fil-a is my favorite fast food restaurant of all time. I mean, I will go to war for Chik-fil-a. I eat there probably three or four times a week. Chik-fil-a is the bomb.”

    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 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 has never had another job other than performing, and he loves watching people connect to his music.

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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 / Kylie Morgan says being on the road performing for people is her “happy place.”

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    Kylie Morgan (the road is her happy place) OC: …that’s me. :48
    “The road is truly my happy place. I love going to sleep and not knowing where I’m going to be the next day. I love hotel beds. I literally just eat and breathe the road. It is truly an adventure all the time, and I knew even when I was little that I had to do something where I traveled because I love the feeling of it. I love experiencing new things, and the fact that I truly feel like what I do is not a job. And the fact that I get to see the world, meet so many amazing people, have a one-on-one connection through my music, I never have to work a day in my life because I would do this for free. It is one of the most liberating feelings to finish a song and see someone turn to someone and go, ‘Omigod, that’s me.’”

    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 / Priscilla Block had a lot of side jobs when she was trying to make it in the music business, including cleaning Airbnbs.

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    Priscilla Block (Labor Day) OC: …didn’t care. :34
    “Cleaning Airbnbs, and that was really interesting ‘cause you’d find some crazy things in those Airbnbs. Those bachelorette parties, all I’m saying is I want to be invited next time. I was kind of sad that I had to be the house cleaner and I wasn’t at the bachelorette party. It was great! You’d go in and sometimes there’d be extra food, alcohol. When I walked in and I would see White Claws in the fridge, I’m, ‘Bingo, baby! Let’s go!’ I don’t know if I was supposed to be taking the alcohol, but I didn’t care.”

    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.”

     

     

  • DARIUS RUCKER PERFORMS CHARLEY PRIDE’S “SOMEONE LOVES YOU HONEY” FOR CMT GIANTS.

    Darius Rucker will perform during the CMT Giants special honoring the late Charley Pride next week, performing one of the legend’s hit songs, “Someone Loves You Honey.” CMT released a sneak peek of Darius’ performance, which you can watch below:

    Also appearing during the special are Alan Jackson, son Dion Pride, Garth Brooks, George Strait, Gladys Knight, Jimmie Allen, Lee Ann Womack, Luke Combs featuring Robert Randolph + Reyna Roberts, Mickey Guyton and Wynonna.

    Darius is currently making his way up the country charts with his latest song, “My Masterpiece.”

  • LABOR DAY LINERS 2021

    Audio / LINER Adam Hambrick (Labor Day)

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    Hey guys! It’s Adam Hambrick, hoping you have a Happy Labor Day weekend.

    Audio / LINER Billy Currington (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Boy Named Banjo (Labor Day)

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    Audio / LINER Brandon Lay (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Brothers Osborne (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Carrie Underwood (Labor Day Weekend)

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

    Audio / LINER Caylee Hammack (Labor Day)

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    Hey y’all! This is Caylee Hammack. I’m wishing you a fun and work-free Labor Day weekend.

    Audio / LINER Darius Rucker (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Eric Church (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Gary Allan (Labor Day)

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    “This is Gary Allan wishing you a Happy Labor Day Weekend.”

    Audio / LINER Jon Langston (Labor Day)

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    Hey! I’m Jon Langston. Hope you have a Happy Labor Day weekend.

    Audio / LINER Jon Pardi (Labor Day weekend)

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

    Audio / LINER Jordan Davis (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Kacey Musgraves (Labor Day weekend)

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

    Audio / LINER Keith Urban (Labor Day weekend)

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

    Audio / LINER Kip Moore (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Kylie Morgan (Labor Day)

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    Hey, it’s Kylie Morgan, wishing you a fun and work-free Labor Day weekend.

    Audio / LINER LBT (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Luke Bryan (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Maddie & Tae (Labor Day)

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    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.

    Audio / LINER Parker McCollum (Labor Day)

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    Hey everybody, I’m Parker McCollum, wishing you a work-free Labor Day weekend.

    Audio / LINER Priscilla Block (Labor Day)

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    Hey, it’s Priscilla Block, wishing you a fun and work-free Labor Day Weekend.

    Audio / LINER Sam Hunt (Labor Day)

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

    Audio / LINER Travis Denning (Labor Day)

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

  • DIERKS, CARRIE, BROTHERS OSBORNE, LUKE, ERIC, MICKEY AND DARIUS WILL BE FEATURED DURING THE THREE-HOUR ABC-TV SPECIAL, CMA SUMMER JAM.

    The CMA announced a new TV special, CMA Summer Jam, which is a three-hour star-studded concert event on September 2nd at 8pm ET on ABC. Filmed at Nashville’s Ascend Amphitheater and other locations at some of the hottest spots in Music City, the special features performances and collaborations curated by the artists themselves.

    Artists such as Dierks Bentley, Brothers Osborne, Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Mickey Guyton, Darius Rucker and Carrie Underwood, as well as Jimmie Allen, Gabby Barrett, Breland, Luke Combs, Florida Georgia Line, HARDY, Miranda Lambert, Carly Pearce, Thomas Rhett, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani, Cole Swindell, Lainey Wilson and Dwight Yoakam.

  • DARIUS RUCKER HITS THE ROAD WITH KYLE PETTY.

    Darius Rucker is featured in this week’s episode of  “Dinner Drive With Kyle Petty,” a new series hosted by NASCAR legend and multi-time Cup Series winner Kyle Petty.

    The episode, which airs Thursday (July 22nd) at 8pm on the Circle Network, has Darius driving Kyle around his hometown of Charleston, South Carolina in the singer’s vintage Volkswagen Karmann Ghia.

     

    They stop at Pearlz Oyster Bar, and then hit up a back porch to pick up guitars and talk about success, living in the South and their love for country music.

     

    Other famous faces appearing in episodes of “Dinner Drive With Kyle Petty” include Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Pitbull and wrestler Ric Flair.

    Darius is currently making his way up the country charts with “My Masterpiece.”

  • DARIUS RUCKER ANNOUNCES 12TH ANNUAL “DARIUS AND FRIENDS” CONCERT TO BENEFIT ST. JUDE.

    Multi-Platinum superstar Darius Rucker will return to the historic Ryman Auditorium on Tuesday, August 17 for his 12th annual “Darius and Friends” concert benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®. The event, which occurred virtually in 2020 and has raised over $2 million to date, will celebrate a return to live shows with an all-star roster of friends to be announced in the coming weeks. As an added bonus, fans and supporters can also tune in from home via a new hybrid concert model.

    Rucker, who has always prioritized philanthropic work, made a commitment after touring the facility in 2008 to support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude: Finding cures. Saving children.® Supporters like Rucker and friends help ensure families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.

    “The incredible work being done at St. Jude really made an impact on me when I had a chance to visit and hear the patients’ stories,” shares Rucker. “They are some of the bravest people I’ve ever met and being able to support them with this event is always a highlight of my year. I’m so glad we’ll be back to performing in front of a full house at the Ryman for such a great cause!”

    Friends performing with Rucker in past years have included Lauren Alaina, Brooks & Dunn, Kane Brown, Luke Bryan, Luke Combs, Sheryl Crow, Randy Houser, Ashley McBryde, A.J. McLean of the Backstreet Boys, Brad Paisley, Kenny Rogers and Brett Young, among many others. The lineup for this year’s event will be announced soon.

    Tickets to the 12th annual “Darius and Friends” benefit concert start at $50 with VIP options up to $150, available at www.ticketmaster.com. Pre-sale access begins tomorrow, July 20, with tickets on sale to the general public this Friday, July 23. Additionally, live stream passes to enjoy the concert from home via Mandolin will be available for $20 HERE.

    The event is made possible with support from generous sponsors PGA TOUR, CDW, Hendrix Enterprises, UMG, CAA, A. O. Smith, AMD, Arrow and Intel.

    For more information, please visit www.DariusRucker.com and follow on social media @DariusRucker.

    About Darius Rucker
    Rucker first achieved multi-Platinum status in the music industry as lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the GRAMMY Award-winning band Hootie & the Blowfish, who have sold more than 25M albums worldwide including their Diamond-certified debut Cracked Rear View, which remains among the Top 10 best-selling studio albums of all time. Since releasing his first Country album in 2008, Rucker has earned a whole new legion of fans with four No. 1 albums on the Billboard Country chart, including RIAA Platinum-certified Learn to Live and True Believers, plus ten No. 1 singles at Country radio and 11 Gold, Platinum or multi-Platinum certified hits. In 2014, Rucker won his third career GRAMMY Award for Best Solo Country Performance with his 9x Platinum version of Old Crow Medicine Show’s “Wagon Wheel,” one of the top five best-selling Country songs of all time. He recently co-hosted the 54th annual CMA Awards and topped the charts at Country radio once again with “Beers And Sunshine” in February. Follow up single “My Masterpiece” is available everywhere now as Rucker puts the finishing touches on a forthcoming album.

    As a lifelong philanthropist, Rucker supports the MUSC Children’s Hospital in his hometown of Charleston, South Carolina and has also raised millions of dollars for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through his annual “Darius and Friends” benefit concert and golf tournament. Rucker has also advocated for over 200 charitable causes supporting public education and junior golf programs in South Carolina through the Hootie & the Blowfish Foundation and serves as a National Chair for the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville.