1. Christmas in the Country: Five Essential Albums

    November 28, 2014 2:00 PM EST This week in The 615, we have taken a look at some of the holiday's top new Christmas albums in country. To close out our kick-off of the holidays, let's look back at five of the format's essential discs of the season. These are the albums that are a must for your collection,…

  2. Amy Grant Overwhelmed With Emotion on 2014 Santa Train Ride: 'It Was Just Beautiful'

    November 23, 2014 1:24 PM EST "We sang a little bit -- it was just beautiful,” Amy Grant says. It’s a tradition that has been going strong in the heart of rural Appalachia since 1943 -- The Santa Train. Engineered by the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce in partnership with CSX, Food City, and Dignity U Wear, the…

  3. Ask Billboard: Katy Perry Regains No. 1 Momentum

    February 17, 2014 1:15 PM EST A monster mailbag on Perry topping the Hot 100 again after missing the top 10; Mariah Carey's best-selling songs; Hall & Oates' 20 biggest hits and more As always, submit your questions about Billboard charts, as well as general music musings, to askbb@billboard.com . Please…

  4. 615 Spotlight: Joanna Smith 'Friends' You

    October 24, 2012 5:00 PM EDT Joanna Smith says growing up in a rural swath of South Georgia was the perfect place to fall in love with music. "There's not much else to do," she tells Billboard with a laugh. "Where I grew up was so rural, it took me about thirty minutes to get to a McDonalds. The town…

  5. Kathy Mattea Strips Away Old Habits on 'Calling Me Home'

    September 13, 2012 5:30 PM EDT "For me, it was stripping off a layer of my habitual way of singing," Mattea tells us. "It was a little bit like being naked" Kathy Mattea 's last album, 2008's "Coal," topped the Bluegrass Albums chart and earned her a Grammy nomination. Her newest…

  6. 615 Spotlight: Terry Radigan Opens Up on 'Breakup' Album

    July 25, 2012 5:00 PM EDT It has been said that music is the common denominator between people. Singer-songwriter Terry Radigan knows this to be a fact, sharing her story of loss in the new album "The Breakdown Of A Breakup." The disc is a collection of emotionally charged songs about the end of a twenty…

  7. 615 Spotlight: Remember Traci Ann Stanley

    February 15, 2012 5:40 PM EST When you hear Traci Ann Stanley sing, it's something you remember. Her voice is as pure as the West Virginia Mountains where she grew up. Stanley's new single, "Remember The Whiskey," has been gaining much attention at various radio stations around the Eastern U.S., and…

  8. Brad Paisley: The Billboard Cover Story

    April 08, 2011 2:19 PM EDT When Brad Paisley and longtime friend/collaborator Chris DuBois wrote "This Is Country Music," they knew they'd penned more than a catchy title track. They had a blueprint. "The song itself is what inspired the album, which is the best way to have an album come about,"…

  9. In 'Country Strong' Movie, Gwyneth Paltrow Channels Her Inner Singer

    January 07, 2011 4:22 PM EST "Country Strong," out in theaters today (Jan. 7), represents an odd amalgamation of entertainment genres. Pop stars Britney Spears and Michael Jackson inspired the film's heartbreaking theme, fleshed out by Gwyneth Paltrow, who is cast as fallen singer Kelly Canter. Meanwhile,…

  10. Chart Beat Wednesday: Carrie Underwood, Ke$ha, Rod Stewart

    July 28, 2010 1:45 PM EDT 'IT'S' NO. 1: Carrie Underwood collects her 10th No. 1 on Country Songs, as "Undo It" lifts 2-1. The song is the third leader from Underwood's "Play On" album, following "Cowboy Casanova" and "Temporary Home." Underwood plated three…

  11. Bo Bice Exhibits 'Different Shades' On New Album

    March 15, 2010 8:15 AM EDT Fans will get a chance to hear "the organic Bo Bice " when the 2005 "American Idol" runner-up releases his next album, "3," on May 18. Bice tells Billboard.com that the new set is "somewhere right in the middle" of the polished pop sound of his post-…

  12. Chart Beat Wednesday: Jay Sean, Lady Gaga, Carrie Underwood

    October 07, 2009 4:55 PM EDT 'DOWN' IS UP: What goes up must come down. In this case, it's because of "Down." After a record 26-week reign with "I Gotta Feeling" (the last 14 weeks) and "Boom Boom Pow" (12 weeks directly prior), the Black Eyed Peas cede the Billboard Hot 100…

  13. Backwards Bullets: This Week In Charts 1989

    August 11, 2009 6:21 PM EDT REPEAT OFFENDER: This week 20 years ago, singer/songwriter Richard Marx joined a select group of male artists who've enjoyed runs of at least three consecutive No. 1s on the Billboard Hot 100. After composing "Right Here Waiting," Marx felt the song was so personal that he…

  14. Stephen Bruton, Renowned Texas Musician, Dies At 60

    May 11, 2009 1:48 PM EDT Stephen Bruton, the Texas-based guitarist and vocalist renowned for his work with Kris Kristofferson, Alejandro Escovedo and many others, died Saturday (May 9) at age 60 due to complications from throat cancer. Bruton was working in Los Angeles with T. Bone Burnett on the film "Crazy…

  15. Ask Billboard: Basia, Bon Jovi and The Boss

    March 27, 2009 1:46 PM EDT Ask Billboard is updated every Friday. Submit your burning music questions to Gary Trust at askbb@billboard.com . Please include your first and last name, as well as your city, state and country, if outside the U.S. BASIA'S BACK Hi Gary, I can't believe that Basia has returned to…

  16. This Day in Music

    November 20, 2008 12:00 AM EST - Madonna adds a ninth U.K. No. 1 album to her career tally, joining her 11th No. 1 single to complete her domination of the British sales charts. "Confessions on a Dance Floor" goes straight to 2005 - Madonna adds a ninth U.K. No. 1 album to her career tally, joining her 11th…

  17. This Day in Music

    September 30, 2008 12:00 AM EDT - Farm Aid co-founders Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young are joined by Dave Matthews, Steel Pulse, Gov't Mule, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gov't Mule, Steve Earle and Allison Moorer for the orga 2006 - Farm Aid co-founders Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young are…

  18. This Day in Music

    September 22, 2008 12:00 AM EDT - Sting receives an Emmy for the A&E documentary, "Sting in Tuscany: All This Time." He dedicates his award to his "dear late friend Timothy White." 2002 - Sting receives an Emmy for the A&E documentary, "Sting in Tuscany: All This Time." He…

  19. This Day in Music

    November 20, 2007 12:00 AM EST - Madonna adds a ninth U.K. No. 1 album to her career tally, joining her 11th No. 1 single to complete her domination of the British sales charts. "Confessions on a Dance Floor" goes straight to 2005 - Madonna adds a ninth U.K. No. 1 album to her career tally, joining her 11th…

  20. This Day in Music

    September 30, 2007 12:00 AM EDT - Farm Aid co-founders Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young are joined by Dave Matthews, Steel Pulse, Gov't Mule, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gov't Mule, Steve Earle and Allison Moorer for the orga 2006 - Farm Aid co-founders Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp and Neil Young are…

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