Jackie Lee www.jackielee.com

When confronted with the crucible of tragedy, some will melt down and others emerge stronger than ever. The latter was the case for promising young Broken Bow Records artist Jackie Lee. Following the heartbreaking death of his mother in June 2016, the 25-year-old vocal powerhouse has undergone a complete transformation – personally and musically – rededicating himself to a whole new attitude and poised for a breakthrough with the romantically-charged single, “Getting Over You.”

“After six years in Nashville, I had yet to look in the mirror and recognize the artist,” he admits of his early music. “I finally feel like I had that moment when I recorded ‘Getting Over You.’”  Featuring an ultra-modern, electronic sound with propulsive drums and wounded vocals so hot they might spontaneously combust, Lee was determined to leave his fingerprints all over the new track, even if that meant breaking way from his earlier sound.

Growing up in a loving home in Maryville, Tennessee – a picturesque town nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains – Lee cut his teeth singing faithful tunes in a church hopping three-piece band, but his unique brand of forward-thinking country was always bubbling under the surface, just waiting to be unleashed. "Until my dad met my mom in ‘89, he had never listened to any other type of music than country,” Lee explains. “No radio stations, he never bought a record, nothing. But my mom was a straight ‘80s pop girl, and because he loved her he started listening to artists like Michael Jackson, Phil Collins and Michael Bolton, and I feel like that’s where my fusion lands.”

"Til Tomorrow,” their debut single with Cones producing, is quickly picking up steam at radio after being premiered on the nationally syndicated Big D and Bubba show. The wildly-popular morning drive radio hosts were the first to jump on the “fan train,” after seeing Walker McGuire perform at a Nashville bar, and have been integral in launching the duo. “These guys have an infectious energy, and it just makes you want to be a part of their story,” said Big D. “We did, and it is clear from the groundswell of support from our listeners that they agree,” said Patrick Thomas, producer of Big D and Bubba. Walker McGuire’s acoustic performance videos, on Big D and Bubba’s YouTube channel, have garnered more than 2 million views to date.

The duo is constantly touring thanks to their booking team at United Talent Agency. “There is nothing more important to us than connecting with the fans because they are driving this train!” McGuire said. Jordan Walker, agrees, “The crowds are growing, and they sing our songs along with us. There is no better feeling as a singer/songwriter than to hear fans singing something you penned.”

We created alter-egos through videos to help promote the music and that’s where Earl Dibbles Jr. came from in the summer of 2011.  It started as a short, funny video that my brothers and I filmed out where my parents live in Central Texas, but it turned out to be something that completely changed the shape of my career. I actually like to think of it as an “intentional accident” because as planned, the video went viral and became a huge promotional tool for my music. But we had no way to know if it would actually work, especially since many of my videos before it never caught fire.

In the early morning of April 16, 2013, I woke up and checked the iTunes store on my phone with tired eyes.  I was absolutely shocked to see my new album, Dirt Road Driveway sitting at #1.  Things were rapidly changing on the road, too.  We were seeing sold out shows in markets we had never played, and a passion in fans unlike anything I had seen before. After independently releasing 7 studio albums, 1 live album and 2 EPs, I finally signed my first record deal in 2015.  I met some great people at Broken Bow Music Group (BBR Music Group) in Nashville who sought us out, believed in my dedication and wanted to take what I was already doing, and magnify the message.  We worked together not only as colleagues, but as friends unified on the same mission.  Within only weeks of the signing, my debut single “Backroad Song” was a hit at mainstream country radio faster than any of us expected.  

A few years ago, I was standing with my boots in red, sandy, Iraqi soil watching a beautifully majestic Middle Eastern sunset, when one of my band members asked me, “Can you believe music got us here?”  No, I can’t.  What a journey it has been since I decided to chase this crazy dream.  We’ve played 10 countries, 3 continents, even the White House a few times, and I still can’t believe it all started with a few guitar chords.  In my song called “Sleeping On The Interstate,” I wrote, “Connecting map dots like poets and prisoners, trying to live more like a lover than sinner, slave to dreams so far away.”  That’s me.  If there’s one thing I’ve learned from the music business, it’s that you don’t really choose this life, you are this life.  That’s the truth no matter if you’re selling albums or not.  I do what I love and love what I do, and there’s no sweeter freedom than that.

Granger Smith Featuring Earl Dibbles Jr www.grangersmith.com/

“IN HIS OWN WORDS” My name is Granger Smith. Sometimes long, fancy industry bios are helpful, but other times you just need to hear from the guy actually living it, so here’s my story.

I was born and raised Texan, and I’m proud of that. I grew up along with two brothers, a couple of yellow labrador retrievers and parents that stayed together because they loved each other.  My life changed when I was 14 years old and decided I would teach myself to play guitar. This was motivated by two things: I thought the guitar would make girls pay attention to me, and George Strait played one.  By the time I turned 15, I was performing weekends on small town stages in North Texas, and doing my best as a fan club member to attend every George Strait concert within driving distance. Playing high school football was an important rite of passage for me, along with hunting and fishing, but the dream of a music career consumed me.  At age 19, I was satisfied with enough songs I had written to make an album. As a freshman at Texas A&M, I was able to scrape together some studio money by pre-selling the album to friends around campus.  For being just a kid, that album did pretty well.  It landed me a songwriting deal with EMI Music Publishing in Nashville, and the following year, I took the leap to Tennessee.  

My time in Nashville was important.  I absorbed the craft of songwriting from some of the best, learned my way around studios and recording gear, (which paid off for me later) and cut my teeth on countless stages as both a singer and as a steel guitar player for other singers.  After four years, I had a shelf full of song demos, a little bit of music business know-how and a strong conviction to move back to Texas, finish my degree at Texas A&M, and start a band.

Moving back to College Station meant basically starting over.  The gigs were hard to book and when they did, nobody showed up to watch.  But I was happy and felt creative.  I saved money by making albums out of my house and using my band.  We wore out vehicles and went from two pickup trucks, to a suburban, to a van and then another van.  The trailers we towed got bigger, and ever so slowly, so did our crowds. I learned how to use a camera and some editing software for making homemade music videos and we made lots of them.

My little brother, Tyler joined me in 2008.  He traded a pretty good job at the bank to jump in an old van and sell t-shirts in honky-tonk dive bars.  I think he did it not only because he shared the same vision as me, but also because his competitive nature was excited about proving a bunch of people wrong.  And that’s exactly what we did.  Together we conspired and worked from the ground up with the goal of not only building an artist, but a brand.  We embraced social media, searched for real connections with fans, studied our predecessors and ignored our doubters.  The good shows helped pay for all the bad ones, and the songs that sold helped fund all the others that didn’t.  We put communities first, knowing that without the people, we were without a job.  

“Everybody Dies Young” embraces Owen’s philosophy of seizing the moment, noting that whether you are 18, 45 or 91, “while we are here, this is our moment in the sun.” He’s joined by Grammy-award-winning songwriter Hillary Lindsey singing on the romantic "Where I Am" and "When You Love Someone," which is perhaps the best showcase of his impressive vocal abilities of his career. And what a career it has been. This year marks Owen’s tenth anniversary, a track record that is increasingly becoming a rarity in today’s popular music landscape. Since releasing his debut album on RCA Records in 2006, Startin’ with Me, he has become one of today’s most popular male country singers for his irresistible melodies, smooth vocals and laid-back attitude.

His second album, 2009’s Easy Does It, contained the singles “Don’t think I Can’t Love You” and “Eight Second Ride” and led to him receiving the Academy of Country Music’s Top New Male Vocalist Award. He landed his first No. 1 hit (and double platinum-selling single) with the title track of his third studio album, Barefoot Blue Jean Night, in 2011. That album also produced three more No. 1s—the platinum-selling “Alone with You,” the gold-selling “The One That Got Away,” and “Anywhere with You.” With the success of that album, he won Breakthrough Artist of the Year at the 2012 American Country

Awards. His fourth studio album, Days of Gold, was released in 2014 and contained the No. 1 hit “Beachin.” Along the way, he toured with artists including Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban, Jason Aldean, Brad Paisley, Little Big Town and Sugarland.

“When you look at my first album, I am the same in the kind of guy that I am and the kind of songs that I love,” he says. “But I am different in the sense that I know who I am now, as opposed to who I was on my first album. I was 24-years-old and just excited to have a record deal and be on tour with Alan Jackson and Brooks & Dunn. I don’t think I put as much emphasis on what my music meant. Now, it isn’t just about making music anymore; it is about recording songs that mean not only a lot to me, but to my fans, who are expecting a lot of me. I have put a lot of thought into each of these songs and why they hit me the way they do and why I get excited when it comes up next on my set list. This is music I am honestly fired up to play for people. I don’t ever want to lose that excitement in my music.“

When he began working on his fifth album, he initially felt compelled to attempt to make what he thought would be a cooler, hipper sound, as evidenced by the song “Real Life,” which was released to radio. However, he soon discovered that cool and trendy aren’t what matters; authenticity and truth are.

“There is no reason to break the mold of what brought me to the party,” he explains. “What brought me to the party is what I do. Anytime I try to do something that isn’t me, it hasn’t worked so well. When I do what is the most comfortable and natural, it has done well.” That’s why he has been truthful about the fact that the last few years haven’t always been easy for the good-time guru. He launched his first headlining tour and reach new career heights, got married and had a daughter, Pearl. But then, his father received a cancer diagnosis, he went through a divorce and the head of his record label was fired.

“I couldn’t pretend like bad things weren’t happening because everybody knew and I’m pretty transparent,” he says. “For the 90 minutes that I got to be on stage performing, I got a lot of pleasure and relief and escape from all of the things that were going on in my life. It was therapy for me. Music heals and not just for the fans and listeners. Most artists will tell you that the reason we became artists is because we need the healing process in our lives. I’m learning that others relate to what you are going through, coming to terms with the fact that life didn’t turn out the way you planned.”

During some of his dark times, he was inspired by a quote that said, “Be kind and gentle and loving to everyone because everyone is fighting their own kind of battle.” He says, “You can feel sorry for yourself, but everybody has something they are going through. Music truly seems to be the one thing that is the healing factor in a lot of people’s lives. I will always be grateful for music, whether I’m performing or listening.”

Friday, June 16, 2017

7:30pm Kassi Ashton, The Cadillac Three, Granger Smith Featuring Earl Dibbles Jr

The Cadillac Three www.thecadillacthree.com

While The Cadillac Three, formally The Cadillac Black, whose members include native Nashvillians Jaren Johnston, Neil Mason and Kelby Ray have been friends and musical co-conspirators since they were kids. They’ve weathered their wild teenage years and even wilder tours, weathered major label letdowns, major league triumphs and a major name change, conquered Music Row – Johnston co-wrote Keith Urban’s #1 single “You Gonna Fly” – and crashed on the couches of strangers in far flung cities. These boys have seen more ups and downs than a Smoky Mountain tour guide.

But in spite of all the trials and tribulations – or perhaps because of them – The Cadillac Three have emerged with a sound all of their own, a sound that hovers between radio-ready country anthems, hard-and-heavy rock and traditional Southern folk. You could call it country fuzz, you could call it hipster-billy, you could call it any number of over-hyphenated, adjective-strewn things but when you boil it all down there’s only one way to describe it: damn good music, as pure and refreshing as a country creek.

It’s a sound that works as well in front of an amphitheater full of ZZ Top fans or the Dierks Bentley crowd as well as it does in the dive bars and dark corners of the underground music. Though, truth be told, The Cadillac Three’s sound probably works best blaring out of your car speakers as you fly down the highway, wind blowing through your hair on the way to another wild Saturday night.

Built around Mason’s thundering, melodic percussion and the sinewy intertwining of Johnston’s guitar with Ray’s lap steel, songs like “I’m  Southern”, “Days of Gold” and “Whiskey Soaked Redemption” on their self-produced debut bristle with energy and explode at a moments notice. Tracks like “Down to the River”, “Get Your Buzz On” and “Back It Up” evoke the legends of Southern Rock – your Molly Hatchets, your Outlaws, your Ozark Mountain Daredevils – but they aren’t nostalgic, aren’t fetishistic reconstructions of by-gone eras. This the new sound of the New South, bigger and badder than ever.

Upon first arriving in Nashville, that fusion was too far outside the box to contemplate. But forced to stare the biggest of all big pictures in the face, Lee decided it was his duty to try – if not for him, then for his mom.

With a renewed sense of purpose, “Getting Over You” is a high-definition look at who Lee really is, lyrically and sonically. Co-written with hit makers Brent Anderson and Paul DiGiovanni, it shows Lee’s hard-wired connection to matters of the heart – and also reveals the genesis of his ambitious new sound.

While influenced by classic country singers like Faron Young and Keith Whitley, one of Jackie’s favorite bands as a kid was the platinum selling pop-rock group Boys Like Girls – a band which happens to feature DiGiovanni as its founding guitarist. The unlikely friends met randomly during a Nashville songwriting session, inspiring Lee to ask DiGiovanni to produce his new music, and take it in the direction he helped create with Boys Like Girls – energetic, emotional and above all, fresh.

Jake Owenwww.jakeowen.net 

The much-anticipated new album American Love represents the best of Jake Owen both musically and personally, and that’s because the project is the result of a soul-searching journey that led him to explore the meaning of life and music. While recording the album, he ventured down some enticing new musical paths, but eventually decided to return home to his Florida-inspired roots, embracing the unique sound for which he is popular. Personally, he worked through the pain and healing of a divorce and renewed his commitment to what really matters in life--hope, optimism and the power of love.

American Love is a new beginning for Owen, who has become a beacon of positive vibes through his uplifting lyrics and melodies, optimism, love of the beach and his youthful spontaneity. This begins the exciting new chapter in his award-winning career that has earned five number one hits-- “Barefoot BlueJean Night,” “Beachin,” “The One That Got Away,” “Alone with You” and “Anywhere with You.” “This record has been very enlightening because I found myself through the songs. I got back to basics with American Love,” he says of the project co-produced by award-winning songwriters and producers Shane McAnally and Ross Copperman with three tracks co-produced Lukas Bracewell and Owen, “This is me, this is what I want to say and this is what I want people to remember me for. These songs promote positivity and love.

“There are a lot of things on this record that have been said before, but it is the feeling of the songs, the sonic nature of them and the lyrics that will make it different than what people have heard before. I feel a real connection to these songs.”

The debut single, “American Country Love Song,” is emerging as this year’s summer anthem. It perfectly captures the anticipation, freedom and hope that is brought on the feeling of summer. The song describes “a couple of kids living that American country love song,” but it’s a much larger celebration of the universal love story that is America itself. “It’s the thought of, ‘Hey, let’s raise our glasses to the fact that we are all one in the same,’” Owen says. “We are basically living one big American country love song.”

All of the songs on American Love have the common thread of wanting to feel happy and peaceful and accepting the need to move on with life. The title track takes the Vero Beach, Fla., native back to some of the best years of his life-- those butterfly-inducing high school dates. “It captures that freedom of young love that keeps showing its face in my music. He drops his girlfriend off and wonders, ‘Should I kiss her?’

As you get older, you get so jaded by little things that happen that you forget what it feels like to be excited by what is next. I gravitate to songs that give me that feeling of excitement.” That youthful feeling of freedom and excitement continues on “After Midnight.” “The song says, ‘If nothing good happens after midnight, why did it always feel so good?’” he says. “I think everyone has thought about that at some point in their

Tyler Farr tylerfarr.com/

Columbia Nashville’s Tyler Farr releases his highly anticipated sophomore album, Suffer In Peace, on April 28th. Suffer In Peace made its debut in the top 5 on the BILLBOARD Top 200 Albums and BILLBOARD Country Albums Charts. Previously with the release of his debut album Redneck Crazy, which released in 2013, landing Farr at No. 2 on the Billboard Country Albums Chart and #5 on the Billboard Top 200 made Farr the only solo male country artist in the last 10 years to have his first two studio albums debut in the top-5 on the Billboard 200 Chart. His #1, platinum-selling title-track “Redneck Crazy” was called the “song of the summer” by The New York Times and projected Farr forward to celebrate back-to-back #1 singles, including his first #1 as a songwriter, with his Gold-certified hit “Whiskey in my Water.” The Missouri native’s dry wit and energetic live show have earned him industry recognition as a 2014 CRS New Faces of Country Radio and 2014 Music Row “Breakthrough Artist of the Year” nominee, as well as rave reviews for his coveted opening slots touring with Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line, Brantley Gilbert and Lee Brice. Tyler has appeared on the Today Show and Fox & Friends’s All American Summer Concert Series. Tyler’s first single off the newly released Suffer In Peace album, “A Guy Walks into a Bar,” is proving to be Farr's third radio hit, currently residing in the Top 5 at country radio, and is now RIAA Certified GOLD.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

6:45pm Smithfield & Trace Adkins

Walker McGuire: walkermcguire.com/home

Walker McGuire is the singer/songwriter duo Jordan Walker and Johnny McGuire. They are Texas and Kansas, heartland USA; performers whose harmonies embody the fabric of America. From an experience writing a veteran’s story in “They Call Me Doc,” to conveying a father’s love in “The Color Pink,” to the story of everyman’s heartbreak in their new single “Til Tomorrow,” Walker McGuire connects with fans.

The Nashville-based duo caught the attention of GRAMMY nominated multi-platinum selling producer, Mickey Jack Cones (Dustin Lynch, Joe Nichols and Trace Adkins). “The first time I heard them, I jumped in with both feet! They are the real deal,” said Cones, who has signed them as writers to the publishing partnership Combustion/Atlas and Cor Music Publishing, and management to Cor Entertainment. Walker McGuire and Cones are currently in the studio recording the new music for which their followers are clamoring.

THURSDAY, JUNE 15, 2017 
8:00pm  Walker McGuire & Tyler Farr

Smithfield www.smithfieldmusic.com

Smithfield is the combined forces of Texas natives Trey Smith and Jennifer Fiedler.  Named an Artist to Watch on People.com the Huffington Post and Rolling Stone Country. CMT named Smithfield to their 2016 Artist Discovery Initiative program. Participating in the CMA EDU program, promoting country music at colleges and universities while touring. SiriusXM The Highway named Smithfield a Highway Find artist. “Nothing but the Night” debuted on SiriusXM The Highway’s Hot 30 Countdown at No.9.

Their sophomore single “Hey Whiskey” reached #3 on SiriusXM The Highway, has over 770,000 plays on Youtube and over 1.6 million streams on Spotify.  About to start the SiriusXM Highway Find tour in March 2017 with Steve Moakler and Drew Baldridge.

Have opened for artists including Eric Paslay, Scotty McCreery, Jana Kramer, Sara Evans, Dustin Lynch, Craig Campbell, Brothers Osborne and Old Dominion.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

8:45pm Jackie Lee & Jake Owen

Trace Adkins http://traceadkins.rtouring.com/

Trace Adkins’ trademark baritone has powered countless hits to the top of the charts and sold over 10 million albums, cumulatively. His hit list includes “You're Gonna Miss This,” “Ladies Love Country Boys,” “Songs About Me,” “Every Light In The House,” “Hillbilly Bone (Blake Shelton & Trace Adkins),” and “Just Fishin’,” to name a few. The Grammy-nominated member of the Grand Ole Opry is a TV personality, actor, author, spokesman for the Wounded Warrior Program and the American Red Cross, for whom he raised over $1.5 million dollars as winner of NBC’s All-Star Celebrity Apprentice. In recent years, Adkins has performed 10 USO Tours.

 In his 2007 autobiography, A Personal Stand: Observations and Opinions from a Freethinking Roughneck, the former oil-rigger recounted his rise to fame, brushes with death, and battles with personal demons. Trace has played a tough as nails biker in The Lincoln Lawyer (starring Matthew McConaughey), and a wise oracle of a tattoo artist in the family-friendly film Moms' Night Out (starring Patricia Heaton, Sean Astin, Sarah Drew). He also developed and hosted GAC’s “Great American Heroes” honoring every-day heroes.