1. John Marks, Spotify's New Nashville Ace, Digs the Swedish Vibe, Addresses Data, 'Freemium,' and Breaking Acts

    November 10, 2015 3:08 PM EST When he joined SiriusXM five years ago, after a 30-plus-year career in terrestrial radio,  John Marks  quickly had to learn the distinct differences between the music that works over the air and the music satellite subscribers want to hear. In ...

  2. CMT's Next Women of Country Event: A Rihanna Cover, A Cyndi Lauper Sing-Along & A Tour Reveal

    November 03, 2015 8:07 PM EST Does country music still have a female problem? Yes, actually. But the talent on display at CMT’s Next Women of Country show at Nashville’s City Winery on Tuesday (Nov. 3) inspires hope that the format’s male-heavy balance may soon be shifting. La ...

  3. Reba McEntire, Brooks & Dunn to Perform at CMA Awards

    October 28, 2015 10:38 PM EDT Country superstar Reba McEntire and duo Brooks & Dunn , fresh off a Las Vegas residency, are headed back to the Country Music Association Awards stage for the first time in seven years. The three longtime friends and collaborators last perform ...

  4. A Thousand Horses Hope They Have The Public's Number With 'Drunk Dial'

    July 22, 2015 11:31 AM EDT The late-night phone call has become a standard theme in modern country music. Lady Antebellum rolled to multi-platinum success with the booty-call ballad “Need You Now,” Luke Bryan practically begged for a midnight visit in “Crash My Party,” and ...

  5. The Billboard Cover Story: Summer Shape Issue 2015 Starring Jason Derulo

    May 22, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Music stars aren't like normal people. They train harder, diet more rigorously and indulge regularly in the most rarefied health fads. Jason Derulo, with his 10 million-selling singles and beach-ready abs, ranks among the most obsessive -- an ...

  6. City Winery Finds a New Home in Nashville

    October 10, 2014 8:19 PM EDT There's no shortage of performance venues in Nashville -- it is Music City, after all -- but Michael Dorf, owner of the just-opened City Winery , says he feels his establishment will offer fans a unique opportunity when watching live entert ...

  7. Motley Crue Tribute Set for Rocking Debut on Billboard 200

    August 22, 2014 7:39 PM EDT Paging all "Girls, Girls, Girls!" The new Motley Crue tribute album is heading for the top 10 of the Billboard 200 chart. Vince Neil Talks Motley Crue Country Tribute Album Industry forecasters suggest Nashville Outlaws: A Tribute to Mot ...

  8. UMG Nashville's New President Cindy Mabe on the 'Old Guard' and Modern Challenges of Music City

    June 27, 2014 3:22 PM EDT After designing successful marketing campaigns for numerous top-tier country stars and helping oversee the tricky merger of the Nashville operations of EMI and Universal Music Group in 2012, record industry veteran Cindy Mabe was rewarded earlier ...

  9. Toby Keith's Bar in Syracuse Owes $250,000 in Taxes

    June 17, 2014 9:32 AM EDT The New York location of country music star Toby Keith's chain of restaurants owes more than a quarter-million dollars in sales taxes to the state. ACM Awards Lineup: Eric Church, Toby Keith, Lady Antebellum and Stevie Nicks Added Toby Keith ...

  10. CMA Music Festival Covers the Gamut of Country Artists

    June 10, 2014 11:02 AM EDT It’s two events in one. The Country Music Association’s annual CMA Music Festival brought an estimated 80,000 people to downtown Nashville for four consecutive days, June 5-8, as fans from around the nation and more than 20 foreign countries chose ...

  11. Ronnie Milsap, Mac Wiseman, Late Hank Cochran Inducted Into Country Hall of Fame

    April 23, 2014 9:57 AM EDT Ronnie Milsap, Mac Wiseman and the late Hank Cochran are the newest members of the Country Music Hall of Fame. The 2014 induction class was introduced by Kix Brooks during a news conference Tuesday at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. The ...

  12. Dee Jay Silver Brings the Country Remixes You Didn't Know You Wanted

    April 16, 2014 4:42 PM EDT It’s hard to put a handle on exactly what Dee Jay Silver does for a living. A popular club DJ-remixer-producer for more than a decade, he now spends much of his life on tour, where he’s worked as a support act for Jason Aldean, Rascal Flatts and, ...

  13. CBS Dominant in TV Ratings With ACM Awards, 'How I Met Your Mother' Finale

    April 08, 2014 7:18 PM EDT A country music awards show, a series finale and the network's usually sturdy regular schedule led CBS to a dominant performance in the weekly television ratings competition. Fourteen of the 20 most-watched programs last week were on CBS, the ...

  14. 'Nashville' Cast Members Going on Tour

    March 31, 2014 3:39 PM EDT More than a year after word first leaked that the stars of country music drama "Nashville" would hit the road, ABC has made it official.   The network on Monday announced that stars Charles Esten (Deacon), Clare Bowen (Scarlett), Jonatha ...

  15. Shakira and Blake Shelton to Duet at ACMs, Band Perry to Open

    March 31, 2014 3:05 PM EDT The Band Perry will open Sunday's ACM Awards, Shakira and Blake Shelton will perform "Medicine," and George Strait will make an announcement about the show's 50th anniversary celebration on the CBS telecast from Las Vegas. Chan ...

  16. Z104 PD Deb Turpin Celebrating 25 Years at ‘Chance Of A Lifetime’ Job

    March 28, 2014 12:24 PM EDT Not many radio PDs can say they’ve been at one station for 25 years. Even fewer can say they got their start at that station mowing the lawn. Former Stealing Angels Twins Transition from Stage to Behind the Curtains as Promoters Both of those thin ...

  17. Frankie Ballard Took A ‘Helluva’ Ride To The Top Of The Chart

    March 21, 2014 10:30 AM EDT There’s a line in Frankie Ballard’s first hit that really resonates with him: “Bad times make the good times better.” Celebrating his first No. 1 this week on the Country Airplay chart with “Helluva Life,” the Battle Creek, Mich., native can’t hel ...

  18. After Digital Success, Country Singer Brantley Gilbert Ascends at Radio as 'Bottoms Up' Tops Charts

    March 14, 2014 2:03 PM EDT At a listener event at KJUG Visalia, Calif., on March 3, a woman asked Brantley Gilbert to sign her arm. She then proceeded straight to the local tattoo parlor to turn his autograph into a permanent testament of her devotion. Brantley Gilbert Hits ...

  19. Live Nation's Watershed Fest Goes Clean In Minutes

    March 14, 2014 10:42 AM EDT The Watershed Music Festival at the Gorge in George, Wash., sold out within 10 minutes of on-sale yesterday.  Over 25,000 three day passes were sold for the third annual music and camping festival on August 1-3 with a lineup of Tim McGraw, Lady An ...

  20. Changing Qualifications for ACM's 'New Artist' Award Confuse Nominees, Observers

    March 13, 2014 4:17 PM EDT As Academy of Country Music members began filling out their final ballots on March 10 on the first day of voting for the 49th annual show, perhaps no category better illustrated the current hurdles for the country music business than new artist o ...

  21. Howdy, NYC?: Live Nation's Rumored Festival Would Highlight Country Music

    March 12, 2014 1:05 PM EDT Country music is surpassing pop, rock and EDM as the fastest-growing genre in the booming festival space. Live Nation's 'Epic' 2013 Earnings Broken Down With its wealth of headliners and full supply of developing acts, country is, ...

  22. Country's Super-Sized Stars Downsize for European Success

    February 24, 2014 4:56 PM EST Eric Church’s The Outsiders is the No. 1 album in the country for the week ending Feb. 16, but when he picks up a beer to celebrate, it may be a locally brewed Guinness. That’s because he’ll be in Dublin, the first of a 12-show European tour start ...

  23. Country's Super-Sized Stars Downsize to Pursue European Success

    February 24, 2014 4:02 PM EST Eric Church’s "The Outsiders" is the No. 1 album in the country for the week ending Feb. 16, but when he picks up a beer to celebrate, it may be a locally brewed Guinness. That’s because he’ll be in Dublin, the first of a 12-show Europea ...

  24. Miranda Lambert Finds Emotional Losses Among Technology's Gains

    February 21, 2014 2:39 PM EST As Miranda Lambert worked through a session at Nashville’s Sound Stage a few months ago, she periodically stopped to text messages with cartoony emoticons to songwriter Natalie Hemby (“Pontoon,” “White Liar”), providing clues about the titles she ...

  25. All For the Hall Fundraiser Returns To L.A.; Vince Gill, Emmylou Harris, Heart Among Performers

    February 20, 2014 4:09 PM EST For the first time in almost three years, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s All for the Hall fundraiser will return to Los Angeles. The annual event will take place on March 4 at Club Nokia located within AEG’s downtown L.A. Live complex ...

  26. Trisha Yearwood Touring ‘Just Because,' Writing Third Cookbook, and Recording New Album

    February 18, 2014 12:02 PM EST In the past few years, Trisha Yearwood’s career has expanded from Grammy winning country chanteuse to best-selling author and Emmy Award-winning host of the Food Network show “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen,” but when a fan recently posed the question ...

  27. CRS Week: The Gulch Offers 'Knock Your Socks Off' Alternative to Standard Power Meal

    February 18, 2014 11:26 AM EST Those attending the Country Radio Seminar (CRS) in Nashville (Feb. 19-21) have 12 good reasons to venture beyond the convention center. The Gulch, a former tangle of abandoned rail yards, is close enough to Music Row to make it a cool alternative ...

  28. Carrie Underwood on the Lack of Successful Female Country Artists: 'You Would Think We'd Be Farther Along' (Exclusive)

    January 30, 2014 10:46 AM EST 4 1.031 k 150 1 In both 2012 and 2013, just three of the top 25 artists on Billboard’s Top Country Songs chart were solo women. In a Billboard Country Update column last fall, we heard what country radio has to say about this, but what do the artists them ...

  29. Silver Lining: 25 Years Of Country Cares For St. Jude Kids

    January 24, 2014 1:36 AM EST There’s no greater testament to the power of radio to make a positive difference in the world than the half-billion dollars country stations have raised in the last 25 years for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Last week in Memphis, many of ...

  30. Anatomy Of A Hit: Parmalee’s No. 1 ‘Carolina’

    January 21, 2014 2:01 PM EST Chris Loss vividly remembers watching Parmalee perform on the Grand Ole Opry last summer and having a knot in his stomach. As VP of promotion for Stoney Creek Records, Loss and his team had been working Parmalee’s second single, “Carolina,” hard f ...

  31. Eric Church Logs Best Debut On Hot Country Songs

    January 10, 2014 1:02 PM EST Eric Church posts his highest start as a lead artist on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart with "Give Me Back My Hometown," which opens at No. 39. The bow surpasses his No. 43 entrance with "Springsteen" two years ago. Th ...

  32. Garth Brooks, Florida Georgia Line Remain Atop Country Charts

    January 03, 2014 11:30 AM EST With a fifth week at No. 1 on Billboard's Top Country Albums chart, Garth Brooks' box set "Blame It All on My Roots: Five Decades of Influences" marks the most weeks atop the tally for the Oklahoman in a dozen years. It's ...

  33. Ray Price, Country Music Legend, Dead at 87

    December 16, 2013 6:00 PM EST Country Music Hall of Famer Ray Price, one of country music’s towering icons and a singer’s singer, died Monday at the age of 87. Price recently entered hospice after hospitalization in Texas and had been fighting a battle against pancreatic ca ...

  34. Any Prop In A Storm: Badly Behaved Fans Use Anything To Get Close To Stars

    November 22, 2013 4:12 AM EST Brad Paisley and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams Paisley, recently made headlines for being the subjects of a cruel hoax in which an adult fan pretended to be a dying child in order to gain sympathy from -- and telephone access to -- the coupl ...

  35. Why Everyone On the Florida Georgia Line Case Study Panel at the Touring Conference Was Grinning Ear-To-Ear (And It Wasn't Just the Fireball)

    November 16, 2013 10:06 PM EST Attendees of Billboard’s Touring Conference couldn’t have asked for a better artist development case study than Florida Georgia Line. How this year the duo went from virtual unknowns to having the longest running No. 1 of all-time on the Hot Cou ...

  36. Ed Hardy to Receive 2014 President’s Award by Country Radio Broadcasters

    November 13, 2013 4:21 PM EST Ed Hardy, president of the Country Music Association Board of Directors, has been announced as the recipient of Country Radio Broadcasters' 2014 President's Award. The award will be presented during the Country Radio Hall of Fame dinne ...

  37. Sarah Trahern Named CEO of Country Music Association

    November 13, 2013 10:37 AM EST Sarah Trahern, former SVP/GM of Scripps Networks Interactive's Great American Country, has been named the new CEO of the Country Music Association, according to a release. She will replace Steve Moore, who suddenly  resigned in July of this ...

  38. Country Labels Revive Two Forgotten Arts: Artist Development—And Patience

    November 07, 2013 8:20 PM EST There are still periodic examples of record companies going one and done with an artist—as in, dropping them from the roster after just one failed single. But country music labels notably appear to more often to be playing the long game of late, ...

  39. Anatomy Of A Hit: Tyler Farr’s ‘Redneck Crazy’

    November 01, 2013 3:38 PM EDT Not since Dixie Chicks’ 1999 hit “Goodbye Earl” has a country song been as reviled by mainstream media—yet beloved by country radio and fans—as Tyler Farr’s “Redneck Crazy.” But while the Chicks’ song stalled at No. 13, Farr’s hit recently ascen ...

  40. Why So Few Female Stars In Country Radio? Theories Abound

    October 24, 2013 1:18 PM EDT For a format that primarily targets women, country radio is playing surprisingly few female artists these days. Equally surprising is how few women there are behind the scenes making programming decisions, as detailed here  last week. This week, ...

  41. Country Music’s Dearth of Females Extends Well Beyond the Artists

    October 17, 2013 2:07 PM EDT Lately, much ado has been made in the consumer press about country music’s female troubles. While format insiders know this is an issue that pops up -- to varying degrees -- about every five years or so, critics have been wound up over the fa ...

  42. Taylor Swift Opens $4 Mil. Education Center at Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

    October 12, 2013 1:27 PM EDT It might as well be Taylor Swift weekend in Music City. The pop star opened her $4 million Taylor Swift Education Center at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum on Saturday morning, and will accept her record sixth songwriter-artist of th ...

  43. Keith, Jennings, Nelson: Second-Generation Performers Making Their Own Way In Country Music

    October 11, 2013 3:00 PM EDT If you consider Jon Bon Jovi to be an uncle, you fell asleep every night to the sounds of live music being played in your living room or performed onstage with a parent when you were barely out of training pants, you may have all the makings of ...

  44. From Radio to Racecar Driver: Rob Bodle’s Surprising Career Transition

    October 03, 2013 2:01 PM EDT After more than 20 years in radio, Rob Bodle is enjoying an unlikely second act many of his former colleagues would envy -- as a racecar driver. Bodle, who was known as Rob “Carpenter” during his broadcasting days, also works as a freelance moto ...

  45. 'Get Off My Lawn': Readers Respond to Country's 'Image Problem'

    September 27, 2013 11:30 AM EDT Last week’s column  drew comments from readers in such disparate country music hotbeds as Australia and Brazil. Citing recent critical comments about current country music from some of the format’s own stars, including Zac Brown and Gary Allan, ...

  46. Has Country Music Gone One Toke Over The Line?

    September 24, 2013 4:02 PM EDT When Toby Keith records a song titled “Weed With Willie,” we get the joke immediately. Willie Nelson’s marijuana usage is, by now, both legendary and widely viewed as kind of a quirkily adorable habit for an 80-year-old country singer whose ow ...

  47. Backbeat: Farm Aid 2013 -- Pete Seeger Sings Out, Neil Young Speaks Up and Jack Johnson Cows Around

    September 24, 2013 5:47 AM EDT "Oh, but ain't that America, for you and me!" sang John Mellencamp on "Pink Houses" at Farm Aid 2013, the annual benefit for America's family farmers, staged Sept. 21 at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, in Sarat ...

  48. Clear Channel Prepping IHeartRadio Country Music Fest, TV Awards For 2014 (Exclusive)

    September 23, 2013 8:21 AM EDT In a wide-ranging video Q&A (below) at the IHeartRadio festival in Las Vegas with Billboard Saturday night, John Sykes, Clear Channel president of entertainment enterprises and Tom Poleman, Clear Channel President of national programming p ...

  49. Zac Brown, Kacey Musgraves on Confronting Country Music’s Image Problem

    September 19, 2013 3:52 PM EDT 7 1.187 k 71 3 0 Like every genre of music, country has its fans and its detractors. But when those detractors include some of the format’s own hit-making artists, country might well be grappling with an image problem even as it enjoys some of its biggest ...

  50. How Blake Shelton Navigates The Terrain Between The CMAs and 'The Voice'

    September 17, 2013 12:28 PM EDT It’s no secret that country artists campaign during awards season. Or that the biggest cluster of potential Country Music Assn. votes reside in Nashville, the business center for the genre. Still, Blake Shelton certainly didn’t orchestrate all o ...

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