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Jordan Davis transformed himself from a Nashville newcomer into a countrywide chart-topper with 2018’s Home State. Inspired equally by the old-school songwriters of his parents’ generation and the high-production dynamics of modern country radio, Home State was a once-in-a-decade debut, filled with fresh material — including the Number 1 hits “Slow Dance in a Parking Lot,” “Take It From Me,” and “Singles You Up” — that bridged the gap between the classic and the contemporary.

That unique sound owed its diversity to Jordan’s roots in Shreveport. Raised by a family of songwriters (including his uncle, Stan Paul Davis, who wrote hit songs for Tracy Lawrence during the 1990s), he grew up in the cultural melting pot of northern Louisiana, within a day’s drive of New Orleans’ jazz clubs, Mississippi’s juke joints, and East Texas’ country saloons. Music was everywhere, and Jordan happily soaked it up. “I never felt drawn to one specific genre,” he remembers. “I was just drawn to songwriting. It didn’t matter if I was listening to folk music or southern rock — if it was a well-crafted song, it would pull me in.”

Years later, Jordan’s the one pulling people in. Buy Dirt, his eight-song follow-up to his self-titled EP and his debut album, Home State, is a record for the modern-day Spotify generation — for music fans whose tastes are all-encompassing, influenced by genre-crossing playlists and the ever-widening range of contemporary country music. Songs like “Drink Had Me” and “Lose You” mix Nashville twang with poppy punch, rooted in beats that owe as much to the dance club as the honky tonk. At the same time, Jordan fills Buy Dirt with the same ingredients that made classic country so great: southern storytelling, timeless melodies, a blue-collar work ethic, and the willingness to break new ground.

“I’ve always loved artists who take risks,” he says. “I’m in a different spot in my life than I was when I released Home State. We all are! 2020 was a tough time for everyone. I was able to use that time to recenter some things in my world, and I didn’t want those lessons to go to waste. I wanted to create something special. The best way to that was to write honestly, and we did a lot of that on this record.”

Teaming up with producer Paul DiGiovanni and all-star co-writers like Hillary Lindsey, Ashley Gorley, Emily Weisband, Josh Kerr, and more, Jordan Davis created Buy Dirt during a year that found the whole world on edge. There was an election. A pandemic. A period of social and civil unrest. Looking to write uplifting music that celebrated the commonalities that bind us together rather than the differences that drive us apart, he focused on universal experiences: breakups (“Almost Maybes”), boozy nights (“Drink Had Me”), old flames (“Need To Not”), self-improvement (“Trying”), and long-lasting love (“I Still Smoked”). Tipping his hat to those who came before him, he also recorded an abbreviated version of John Prine’s “Blow Up Your TV,” which opens the EP.

Featuring an appearance by Luke Bryan, “Buy Dirt” isn’t just the record’s title track. It’s also the centerpiece. Written amidst the chaos and uncertainty of Covid-19, “Buy Dirt” focuses on the things that truly matter. The song finds its narrator sitting on a back porch with his grandfather, listening to the old man dispense pearls of wisdom between sips of hot coffee. For Davis, the story goes even further than that.

“When Covid hit, I was worried that I’d lost a career that I’d spent my entire life building,” he admits. “It took me a couple months to realize I already had everything I needed — a roof over my head, a beautiful daughter that I could watch grow up, and an amazing wife. I had my family, faith, and friends. As humans, we always want what we don’t have… but it’s good to take a step back and refocus on what’s really important.”

The conversation depicted in “Buy Dirt” reminded Davis of a night he spent with Luke Bryan. The two musicians had first met at an awards show, then bumped into each other on the golf course throughout the years that followed. “We sat around the fire after a golf tournament one day, smoking cigars and talking about everything but music,” Davis recalls. “That conversation always stuck with me. Luke isn’t just a great entertainer; he’s a great Dad, a great husband, and a great friend, too. That’s what ‘Buy Dirt’ embodies. When I wrote ‘Buy Dirt,’ I knew he could relate to the song’s message. I took a chance and asked him to join me on the recording, and he said yes.”

Had Luke Bryan joined Jordan Davis on 2018’s Home State, it might have come across as an established country headliner voicing his support for a young up-and-comer. This is something different. Here, the two artists are genuine peers, handing down advice to those within earshot.

“Those years I spent in college, driving around with the radio on… Luke Bryan was the radio,” Jordan says. “He’s the guy I was always listening to. I don’t know what I would’ve done if someone had told me I’d be teaming up with him in 2021, singing a song that means so much to me. It’s such a special moment. Something to be grateful for.”

These days, Jordan Davis has much to be grateful for. With Buy Dirt, he stakes his claim as a country innovator, both expanding and modernizing his sound without abandoning his love for the classics. It’s there — in the grey area between eras — that he’s built his career, digging deep into his own sonic territory. And there are diamonds in the dirt.

 

 

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ERIC CHURCH TAKES FANS BEHIND-THE-SCENES OF HIS “HEART ON FIRE” MUSIC VIDEO.

Eric Church is taking fans behind-the-scenes of his music video for “Heart On Fire” and how they created the whirlwind journey down memory lane by going back through many of his previous music videos, including “How ‘Bout You,” “Smoke a Little Smoke,” “Homeboy,” ‘Drink in My Hand,” “Springsteen,” “and “Record Year,” among others.

 

 

Reid Long directed the video which included a lot of video special effects, similar to Deepfake, a type of technology used to manipulate images. The crew shot Eric singing each portion of the song and matched the lens, camera position and angle of Eric’s head with the original content, plus doing some digitally de-aging and adding more or less facial hair depending on the era of the older video. In other words–a lot of technology, time and energy was involved in the making of the “Heart On Fire” video.

Eric, the reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year, is on the road with his Gather Again Tour, which is making stops in Vancouver, British Columbia and Seattle, Washington this weekend.

CARRIE UNDERWOOD’S DEBUT ALBUM, SOME HEARTS, CERTIFIED 9x PLATINUM BY RIAA.

Seven-time GRAMMY® Award winner and three-time ACM Entertainer of the Year Carrie Underwood has added two new career milestones with the Recording Industry Association of America® (RIAA) 9x Platinum certification of her 2005 debut album, Some Hearts, and the 7x Platinum certification of her global smash hit single from that album, “Before He Cheats.”

The superstar was surprised with plaques to commemorate the certifications by Jackie Jones, RIAA Vice President, Artist & Industry Relations at her October 23 performance at the Grand Ole Opry.

Underwood has sold more than 66 million records worldwide, recorded 28 #1 singles (14 of which she co-wrote), and has seven albums that are certified Platinum or Multi-Platinum by the RIAA. In just over 15 years, she has already skyrocketed to the top of Gold and Platinum history with over 70 million certifications. Additionally:

  • Underwood continues her reign as the number one certified Country female artist in music history for digital singles.
  • Some Hearts, which was released by Arista Nashville in 2005 and produced by Mark Bright and Dan Huff, is the 6th, and most recent, Country album to achieve 9x Platinum. Underwood now joins Garth Brooks and Taylor Swift as the only three Country artists to release and certify an album that high in the past 16 years.
  • “Before He Cheats,” written by Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins, is the 11th, and most recent, Country song to achieve 7x Platinum.

Most recently, five singles from Cry Pretty have been certified by the RIAA, including the Platinum-certified singles “The Champion featuring Ludacris” and “Southbound” and the Gold-certified “Cry Pretty,” “Love Wins,” and “Drinking Alone.” All nine of her consecutive album releases (two of which she co-produced) from the beginning of her career debuted #1 on the Billboard Country Chart, making her the only artist to accomplish that feat.

Underwood’s ninth album, My Savior, was released in March, featuring the beloved gospel hymns she grew up singing in church, which she co-produced with a multi-platinum selling, four-time GRAMMY® Award-winning record producer and songwriter David Garcia.  Her Christmas album, My Gift (Special Edition), was released September 24, featuring three additional tracks, and debuted at #1 on Billboard’s first Top Holiday Albums chart of this holiday season.  HBO Max is currently streaming “My Gift: A Christmas Special From Carrie Underwood,” which premiered in December 2020, a musical holiday special, with Carrie performing songs from My Gift with a full orchestra and choir, becoming an instant holiday classic.  Her hit duet with Jason Aldean, “If I Didn’t Love You,” is currently #1 at Country Radio and she recently collaborated for the first time with Dan + Shay on “Only Us” from the Dear Evan Hansen (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack).

About Carrie Underwood:
Carrie Underwood is a true multi-format, multi-media superstar, spanning achievements in music, television, film, and as a New York Times bestselling author and successful entrepreneur.  She has sold more than 66 million records worldwide, recorded 28 #1 singles (14 of which she co-wrote), and has seven albums that are certified Platinum or Multi-Platinum by the RIAA, all while continuing to sell out arena tours across North America and the UK.  All nine of her consecutive album releases (two of which she co-produced) from the beginning of her career debuted #1 on the Billboard Country Chart, making her the only artist to accomplish that feat.  She has won over 100 major awards including 7 GRAMMY® Awards, 15 ACM Awards including three for Entertainer of the Year (the first female in history to win twice and the only female ever to win three times), 23 CMT Music Awards (holding the record for the most award wins ever for the show), 7 CMA Awards, and 15 American Music Awards. She has also built a successful business portfolio inspired by her passion for health and wellness, including her fitness and lifestyle brand, CALIA by Carrie Underwood, bestselling book, FIND YOUR PATH, her fit52 app, and a partnership with BODYARMOR Sports Drink.  She recently announced her first-ever residency, REFLECTION: The Las Vegas Residency, at The Theatre at Resorts World Las Vegas, which will begin December 1.

PARKER McCOLLUM TAKES A BITE OUT OF THE APPLE.

Last week it was announced Parker McCollum is the latest addition to Apple’s Up Next program, their monthly artist initiative geared towards identifying, showcasing and elevating rising talent. The Up Next film has Parker talking about his start, his No. 1 song “Pretty Heart” and his track to success. Check it out below.

 

Parker  began building a following in his native Texas with 2015’s The Limestone Kid. The album track “Meet You in The Middle” became a hit on Texas’ regional radio chart, but it was the album’s widely-acclaimed follow-up, Probably Wrong, that helped Parker find national success. Bridging the gap between Texas’ homegrown music scene and Nashville’s country-industry headquarters, Parker’s songwriting earned him a publishing deal with Warner/Chappell Nashville in May 2018 and a recording deal with Universal Music Group Nashville in June 2019. In 2020, Parker released Hollywood Gold, the highest-selling debut country EP of 2020, which includes debut No.1 hit single “Pretty Heart,” and was certified Platinum, as well as playlisted across Apple Music top tier playlists, Today’s Country, and Don’t Mess With Texas. Parker followed with his 2021 major label debut, Gold Chain Cowboy, which was the top Country album in 17 countries on Apple Music, including the US, since its release. Earlier this summer, Parker played his first sold-out show at the Dallas, TX Dos Equis Pavilion to a crowd of 20K fans and this fall he played the famed Woodlands (The Cynthia Wood Mitchell Pavilion) in Woodlands, TX, to a sold out crowd which broke attendance records for the venue.

“All I ever wanted was a real shot in country music. To be an Apple Music Up Next artist is an incredible honor and it means so much to me to have a platform like Apple believe in me,” says Parker McCollum. “I always try to keep my head down and earn every little thing so to have this spotlight for a little while is nice. I do not take it for granted. Now back to work. Mad love.”

Additional Up Next campaign moments include a Jimmy Kimmel Live! performance on November 23rd, and a sit down interview with Apple Music Country’s Kelleigh Bannen, where he discusses his Gold Chain Cowboy album, being inspired by Pat Green, playing the Ryman, and the one song that defines him.

In the meantime, he’s making his way up the country charts with “To Be Loved By You” from his Gold Chain Cowboy album.

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