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NEAR TRUTHS:
THE AGENCY SAGA
What do you want from live? (6/11a)
REVENUE CHART: OLIVIA’S ARMY
Looks like she's got staying power. (6/11a)
SIGNS OF HITS LIST
We're reading the tea leaves. (6/11a)
WATCH THE FIRST OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR "FEELING GOOD"
The Black Music Month celebration continues with a classic from a legend, (6/10a)
MUSIC’S HOTTEST FIRMS: HERTZ LICHTENSTEIN YOUNG & POLK LLP
Is there a lawyer in the house? (6/11a)
RHYTHM, BLUES AND THE FUTURE
The musical tapestry we know as R&B.
WHO'S NEXT?
Predicting the next big catalog deal.
JUST THE VAX, MA'AM
Once we all get vaccinated, how long before we can party?
WORLDWIDE GROOVE
How is globalization bringing far-flung territories into the musical mainstream?
Music City
THE HIGHAM NASHVILLE EXPERIENCE
5/27/21

Morris Higham Management has teamed up with The Bluebird Cafe and the Ryan Seacrest Foundation (RSF) to give pediatric patients across the country the Nashville experience.

The partnership brings Morris Higham’s roster of artists to the RSF-launched mini concert series, The Nashville Sessions, which kicked off in 2020 and features performances and songwriter insight during sit-down interviews across iconic Nashville venues.

ACM award-winning artist Brantley Gilbert, Brandon Lay, Chase Wright and Joey Hendricks participated in the latest installment held at The Bluebird Cafe.

“My time in Seacrest Studios at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt really had an impact on me,” said Gilbert. “I’m so grateful to be a part of The Nashville Sessions for Seacrest Studios, and I hope we get the privilege to meet with patients and families in person again soon.”

“We are so thankful for the great work the Seacrest Foundation continues to spearhead for these families who are already juggling so much,” shared Clint Higham, President of Morris Higham.

I believe these sessions capture the feeling of being here, in our tiny room, and hopefully, patients watching will learn something new about their favorite songs while getting acquainted with the talented creators behind them,” added Erika Wollam Nichols, GM for The Bluebird. 

Morris Higham’s roster has previously done visits with Seacrest Studios and several artists have selected RSF as a charitable recipient for campaigns and benefit concerts. 

“So many of the patients and families our partner hospitals serve will never get the chance to visit Nashville or see these artists live, so these sessions are truly a gift for them. Adding in the opportunity for them to learn about and see a venue as iconic as The Bluebird Cafe makes this session extra special!” Said Meredith Seacrest, Executive Director & COO, RSF.

JON NITE RE-UPS WITH SMP NASHVILLE
5/26/21

Sony Music Publishing Nashville has renewed its global publishing deal with Grammy-nominated, CMA and ACM-winning songwriter Jon Nite. His longstanding relationship with the company began in 2009.

The Texas native is best known for penning country hits like Brett Young’s “Lady,” Cole Swindell’s “Break Up in the End,” Luke Bryan’s “Strip it Down,” Dierks Bentley’s “Living,” Keith Urban and Miranda Lambert’s “We Were Us,” Jake Owen’s “Beachin,” “Michael Bay’s “Think a Little Less” and Lee Brice’s “Boy,” among many others.

His recent credits also include Gabby Barrett’s “I Hope,” which was co-written by fellow SMP songwriters Barrett and Zach Kale, and earned Nite his first #1 on the Country Songwriters chart earlier this year. 

“I’m so thankful to be a part of the Sony Music Publishing family,” said Nite. “Josh V, Dane, Tom, Rusty, all the way to Jon Platt have believed in what I’m fighting to create every day, and it has resulted in hits that are heard in places I can’t even pronounce. I hope to keep the bar high and help my team see the success they deserve.”

“Jon is a true craftsman of the highest order,” added Josh Van Valkenburg, SVP Creative, SMP Nashville. “We are honored to remain Jon’s publisher and look forward to celebrating many more career milestones with him in the coming years.”

Throughout his career, Nite has also penned songs for stars like Tim McGraw, Blake Shelton, David Nail, Kenny Chesney, Phillip Phillips, Chase Rice, Chris Young, Darius Rucker and Dustin Lynch, among others, and has earned sixteen #1 singles, three CMA Triple Play Awards, an ACM for Vocal Event of the Year, an NSI Song of the Year Award and more.

A WEEK OF PRINE'S SONGS
5/25/21

The family of John Prine will present a weeklong series of concerts and events in Nashville in October, culminating on 10/10, which would have been Prine’s 75th birthday.

You Got Gold: Celebrating the Life & Songs of John Prine will include tribute concerts at The Ryman Auditorium (10/6 & 7), CMA Theater at The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum (10/8) and the Basement East (10/9).

Each show will feature a unique line-up of friends performing and celebrating the legendary singer, songwriter and performer. Presales start Wednesday; general on-sale begins Friday.

All proceeds from the week will benefit the newly created 501c3, The Hello In There Foundation, which aims to identify and collaborate with individuals and communities where people are marginalized, discriminated against or are otherwise forgotten.

Additionally, on 10/8, Prine’s Oh Boy Records will release a new tribute record, Broken Hearts and Dirty Windows: Songs of John Prine, Vol. 2.  Two songs from the set have been released: Brandi Carlile’s “I Remember Everything” and Sturgill Simpson’s “Paradise.”

To celebrate Oh Boy’s 40th anniversary, the label will roll out a new documentary series, Big Old Goofy World: The Story of Oh Boy Records. Directed by Joshua Britt and Neilson Hubbard, the first installment of the series has been posted.

BIG WEEKEND WITH BIG MACHINE AND MCGRAW
5/24/21

Grab your beer cozies as Tim McGraw is gearing up to host Big Machine’s McGraw & Friends Memorial Day Weekend Special.

Hosted by McGraw, the two-hour radio event features country stars like Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, Brett Young, Lady A and more as they share favorite Memorial Day memories and summer playlists while honoring the men and women of service.

During the special, they'll also be raising awareness for organizations like The Independence Fund, who assist veterans and their families with recovery. 

The non-exclusive radio special kicks off on 5/29 and runs through 5/31 with 12-minutes for local spots each hour. The show will also air on Big Machine Radio via the iHeart app, TuneIn app and on BigMachineRadio.com, where fans can see airdates and times.

JACKSON HELPS HIS HOMETOWN
5/19/21

Alan Jackson is heading back to his hometown of Newnan, Ga., to play a benefit for the victims of the March tornado that destroyed more than 70 homes and compromised 1,700 structures.

Where I Come From: Tornado Benefit Featuring Alan Jackson takes place 7/26 at Newnan’s Coweta County Fairgrounds. Joining Jackson are Chris Young and fellow Georgia natives Caylee Hammack, songwriter Adam Wright and Brian Wright.

Proceeds from the show will benefit the Coweta Community Foundation. Tickets for Jackson’s benefit go on sale 5/21.

Last week Jackson released his 21st studio album Where Have You Gone and sat down with HITSHolly Gleason for a wide-ranging interview. Check it out here.

ALDEAN SADDLES UP
5/17/21

Jason Aldean will get back on the road in August with his Back In The Saddle Tour, produced by Live Nation, that starts 8/5 in Virginia Beach.

…Read more

TUNE IN: INGRID SHORT FILM HITS AMAZON MUSIC
5/14/21

Amazon Music has released a short film, A Lady Like That, on Warner Music Nashville star, Ingrid Andress. The doc follows Andress' breakthrough year, which includes her hit single "More Hearts Than Mine" reaching #1 on the country charts and a haul of nominations at the Grammy's, ACMs and CMAs

Directed by Lauren Dunn, the short film showcases one of the most exciting, unapologetic young artists in country music with never-before-seen home video footage and candid interviews. 

Watch the short film here and in the Amazon Music app. 

“It’s been a dream to work with Lauren Dunn, Amazon Music, Breakwater Studios and my team on this project. To have the opportunity to work with this stellar group and bring my story to life has been incredible,” shared Andress. “I'm excited for more folks to learn about my journey into the country music format and I hope my story can be encouraging to anyone who feels like an outsider.”

Amazon Music listeners can also access a new Amazon Original—a reimagined version of the album’s title track, “Lady Like,” featuring a new orchestral arrangement, released last week. Produced by Margot, and arranged by Margot and Juan Villacrez, Andress’ new version was recorded with an all-woman orchestra. 

NEW HIRES JOIN ACM
5/13/21

The Academy of Country Music has announced new hires in three departments: Rory Levine joins the Academy as VP, Digital Strategy & Engagement; Haley Montgomery joins as Manager, Awards & Membership; and David Sassano joins as Executive Assistant to ACM CEO Damon Whiteside. Pictured above (L-R): Levine, Montgomery, Sassano.

Most recently, Levine led all consumer recruitment and registration efforts for The Atlantic’s acclaimed events business. Prior to that, he served as VP, Marketing and Audience Engagement at Viacom’s CMT, heading all consumer-facing advertising campaigns, promotional partnerships, and social media activation, including the successful migration and relaunch of the fan-favorite music drama series Nashville. In his new role, Levine will build and execute digital strategies for the ACM's content across a variety of platforms; he will report directly to Whiteside.

Alabama native Montgomery will be responsible for supporting all initiatives and development of ACM membership, along with overseeing the Awards & Voting process. Previous stops for Montgomery include Opry Entertainment Group as Manager for the Artist & Label Relations team and three years on the strategic partnership team at CMA. She will report to Tommy Moore, VP, Artist & Industry Relations and Board & Governance.

Sassano joing ACM after spending 14 years at WMG as Director of Operations and Administration. His first 10 years were at WEA in New York and most recently 4 years at Warner Music Nashville. In his current role as Executive Assistant, he will provide administrative support to the CEO, Board of Directors and Executive Team. 

“The Academy is thrilled to welcome Rory, Haley and David to the team,” said Whiteside, CEO of the ACM. “Each of these professionals brings with them valuable expertise and knowledge of the Country Music industry that we know will provide a fresh perspective to the ACM team, helping to propel us forward in our future endeavors.”