George Strait's 40th album on MCA, "Love is Everything," releases today (May 14). It includes his current hit "Give It All We Got Tonight," written by Mark Bright, Tim James and Phil O'Donnell. The 60-year-old Strait is hoping that song will become his 60th No. 1 before he turns 61 on May 18. The album has a more personal feel and four of the songs were written or co-written by George with his son Bubba and legendary songwriter Dean Dillon. “I’m not sure they’ll learn anything about me they don’t already know,” Strait says in a press release about the content of "Love Is Everything." “I’ve been doing this a long time and 40 is a lot of records!” He continues, “It's always fun putting together songs for a new record. It can also be difficult at times. This one was both for sure, but worth every minute. I think it's my best release in a while. I hope people enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed making it.” Strait kicked off 2013 in high gear for the first leg of his The Cowboy Rides Away Tour. Only the June 1 show in San Antonio’s Alamodome remains in the sold out tour. Known as the “house they built for George,” the Alamodome sold out within an astounding six minutes of going on sale. Dates for the second leg of the tour will be announced later this year. "Love Is Everything" track listing: 1. I Got A Car 2. Give It All We Got Tonight 3. Blue Melodies 4. I Just Can’t Go On Dying Like This 5. I Thought I Heard My Heart Sing 6. That’s What Breaking Hearts Do 7. When Love Comes Around Again 8. The Night Is Young 9. Sittin’ On The Fence 10. I Believe 11. Love Is Everything 12. You Don’t Know What You’re Missing 13. When The Credits Roll - - - Trace Adkins new album hits today (May 14) too. Titled "Love Will …" Adkins says on his website don't expect an album of love ballads, quipping that, in his book, "Hot Mama" and "Badonkadonk" are love songs. As Trace points out, the variety on "Love Will…" is layered. The album title itself is an open-ended question -- love will build a bridge? love will move mountains? love will tear us apart? Any Country fan can tell you … all are true. "Love Will…" track listing 1. When I Stop Loving You 2. So What If I Do 3. Come See Me 4. Right Now 5. Every One Of You 6. The Altar Of Your Love 7. Kiss You All Over (Featuring Exile) 8. If The Sun Comes Up 9. Say No To A Woman 10. Watch The World End (Featuring Colbie Caillat) 11. Love Will (Featuring Harlem Gospel Choir) - - -
The CMT Music Awards take place June 5. You can vote for your favorite videos at CMT.com. Jason Aldean and Kristen Bell will co-host the show, which airs at 8 p.m. on CMT. Scheduled to perform are Hunter Hayes, Little Big Town, Luke Bryan, Pistol Annies and Taylor Swift.
Eric Church, Luke Bryan and Miranda Lambert each grabbed four nominations. Jason Aldean, Kenny Chesney, Rascal Flatts and Florida Georgia Line each received three. Brad Paisley, Carrie Underwood, Hunter Hayes, Jana Kramer, Journey, Kacey Musgraves, Little Big Town, Taylor Swift and Tim McGraw each received two.
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"Nashville" fans will be relieved to hear that the show was picked up for a second season. "The Music of Nashville Volume 2," a new album of music from the show, is now available.
"Malibu Country," starring Reba McEntire and Lily Tomlin, won't be returning in the fall.
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Country newcomer Dakota Bradley has some well-known names behind his debut single and new album.
The single, "Somethin' Like Somethin'," was written by Mark Irwin and Shane McAnally. His debut album, due later this year, was produced by Byron Gillmore and Tim McGraw.
McGraw says Dakota is "the real deal. He is a great young artist who defies the trends and lives for his music. His voice is unique and instantly recognizable, and his ability to convey pure emotion in his music draws the listener in from the very first word of every song."
The 18-year-old St. Louis native currently lives in Nashville and has been on a three-month national radio tour.
"Somethin' Like Somethin'" is available on iTunes and other digital music retailers.
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Flatlands Country Music Festival is a new country music and camping festival for 2013. It will be hosted at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan., Sept. 12 to 14 with a total capacity of 24,000 people. Luke Bryan and Toby Keith have been tapped to headline.
Additional artists slated to perform include Rodney Atkins, Kevin Fowler, J.T. Hodges, Love and Theft, Darius Rucker and Thompson Square. The Charlie Daniels Band will headline a free concert on Sept. 12.
Tickets and other details can be found at ticketmaster.com or FlatlandsFestival.com.
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George Jones' final Nashville concert was set for Nov. 22 at Bridgestone Arena. The country legend died last month, but the concert will go on as a "Tribute to George Jones."
Many of the artists scheduled to play that show are still performing, including Garth Brooks, Kid Rock, Travis Tritt, The Oak Ridge Boys, Montgomery Gentry, Sam Moore, Charlie Daniels and Jamey Johnson. Once the final list is confirmed, it will be posted at georgejones.com.
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Another country music legend, Ray Price, was admitted to the hospital on May 13 for a case of severe dehydration. Price says "doctors are pumping me with fluids and I'm feeling much better. The Country Music Hall of Famer member revealed a six-month fight against pancreatic cancer in November. Price is 87.
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Carrie Underwood will take over the theme song for "Sunday Night Football" this fall on NBC. The network says Carrie will sing a new version of the "Waiting All Day for Sunday Night" that Faith Hill performed for the past six seasons. Faith announced last month she would not be back for the seventh season.
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Tim McGraw's new video, for "Highway Don't Care," http://www.cmt.com/videos/tim-mcgraw/906464/highway-dont-care.jhtml, features Taylor Swift and Keith Urban. It's not what I picture when I hear the song. I hope I never need surgery, but if I do I hope "Dr." Tim McGraw is in-network.
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APA Nashville salutes Lee Greenwood ("God Bless the USA") upon the opening of the Lee Greenwood spotlight at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. This year marks the 30th anniversary of "God Bless the USA" and Greenwood's return to the stage during the CMA Music Festival June 9.
The "Lee Greenwood: American Patriot" exhibit will be open through April 25, 2014 ,and features costumes and memorabilia spanning his 50-year career. His work with the armed forces includes more than 30 USO tours.
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Massachusetts-born singer/songwriter Joel Crouse made his Grand Ole Opry debut on May 11.
"I was overwhelmed with emotions that I don't even know how to describe," Crouse said, according to a news release. "There's something about the moment you step on its stage … for me, it was the first time I've truly felt like a part of the country music community. I'll never forget that moment."
Crouse was joined by his mother, father, sister, grandmother and friends as he waited side-stage for his name to be called by Opry member Jeannie Seely. Crouse then performed his self-penned "If You Want Some," his current Top 40 single on Show Dog-Universal Music, and "That's Why God Made Love Songs."
He will join Taylor Swift on her "Red Tour" beginning May 28 in Glendale, Ariz. He will also perform in the Show Dog Universal Fan Appreciation Party at CMA Fest in Nashville in June.
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Collin Raye launched his "That's My Story" tour today this month. Raye has charted 23 Top 10 singles and 15 No. 1 hits and sold 20 million albums. His hits include "Love Me," "Little Rock," "In This Life," "My Kind of Girl," "I Can Still Feel You" and "On the Verge." (His holiday album included one of the best versions of "O Holy Night.")
Would be a good show, but looks like this one doesn't stop in Maryland, Virginia or Pennsylvania.