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Barbie dolls,dresses and tea parities are the things a girl is supposed to do. Or so we were told when I was growing up. Growing up I was a rarity, captain America and red skull were my bed time stories, there was never a action fiugre to far away from my stack of toys. The world has became more accepting of girls loving 'geek' things but there is still a lot of people who believe girls know nothing of being a nerd nor have no knowdlge of any of it. I face this on a daily bases as a co-owner of a comic store. This blog will follow those jouneries and also high light other woman's stories

Top 10 things to look forward to about CMA Fest 

 

In a few short weeks Country Music’s biggest party (CMA Fest) will be once again taking over Nashville! With the event vastly approaching we are taking a look ahead at the 2017 event! Variety Beat will be there bringing coverage from all 4 days! There’s a lot of reasons to be excited about this year’s festival!
10. City Of Hope Softball Game

This is always a fun event and one that has been going on for 27 years! The event takes some of country music’s up and coming stars as well as superstars and puts them on the baseball diamond! It also puts fans really close to the artists and makes for a great event for everyone! All proceeds from the game benefit City of Hope which raises money for Cancer research and treatment! The first round of this year’s team lineup as already been announced! Kellie Pickler, Lauren Alaina, Danielle Bradbery, Aaron Watson and The Bachelorette Kaitlyn Bristowe and her fiancé Shawn Booth are in the first group announced! It has been announced that Reba McEntire will be singing the national anthem! Tickets can be purchased on ticketmaster.com and more information can be found at cityofhope.com 

 

 

9. Chevrolet Riverfront Stage 

One of the coolest stages at CMA fest is the Riverfront stage! It’s one of the free stages of the festival , the seating for fans is the actual hillside and the flowing behind the stage is the Cumberland river which gives some fans opportunities to watch from their boats! The Riverfront stage rocks all 4 days starting at 10am and ending sometime in the late afternoon usually around 5. This years lineup can be found here!


8. Country Music Hall Of Fame 

The Hall of Fame is always a hub of continuous activity. Anything from Autograph signings, performances, Fan Club Parties and other events happen there throughout the festival! They also have pop up events that happen with just a few hours notice! So make sure you keep an eye on all of the Hall of Fame’s social media accounts.

Thanks for the 🍪s @thundertech! You know the way to our 💛s!!!

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7. The Opry Store on Broadway 

While the Grand Ole Opry takes place at the Opry house in the summer, the spirit of the Opry lives on at the Opry Store that’s located on Broadway! During the festival they do a lot of signings in the back area of the store! These tend to be smaller crowds in some cases, and It gives fans a chance to meet Stars that may not be in Fan Fair X. Keep an eye on the Opry’s social media accounts to find out who they will have in store!
6. HGTV Lodge 

The lodge is free but you do have to have a wrist band to get in! The lodge has performances from different artists throughout the 4 days. Not only do you get to see exclusive performances, but the lodge has fans to help everyone get a break from the heat! Wristbands can be won on the giveaway that is done on the CMAfest website closer to the event.


5. Chevrolet Park Stage, Gildan Broadway Stage at Hard rock Cafe, Music City Stage and Budweiser Forever Country Park Stage 
These 4 stages offer a lot of amazing performances from a lot of artists! Each stage is packed full of acts! Artists such as Sundance Head, Kristian Busch, Love and Theft, Lindsay Ell, Mo Pintney, Ryan Follese, Jamie Lynn Spears, Olivia Lane, Kalie Shorr, Natalie Stovall and more! Full lineups can be found below!

CMA FEST: GILDAN BROADWAY STAGE PERFORMERS ANNOUNCED!

CMA FEST: CHEVROLET PARK STAGE PERFORMERS ANNOUNCED!

CMA FEST: BUDWEISER FOREVER COUNTRY STAGE PERFORMERS ANNOUNCED!

CMA FEST: Music City Stage Lineup Announced!
4. Night Time Events!

The party don’t end when the concerts at Nissan Stadium end! A lot of events take place at the Honky Tonk and other venues in the area! They range from fan club parties, late night Jam sessions to concerts for charities! Last year Charlie Worsham did a late night jam session at Ernest Tubb Record Shop on Broadway! With several of his friends like Brandy Clark and Eric Church dropping by! The event became so popular throughout the week that they eventually moved it to another venue.

An event that’s already been announced for this year’s Festival is The 2017 concert for Love and Acceptance hosted by Ty Herndon and Cody Allan!

Super Star Lineup Announced For Ty Herndon’s 2017 Concert For Love and Acceptance!

Several artist’s have already been announced for the concert with more coming soon! Some that have already been announced are: Thompson Square, Billy Gilman, Lorrie Morgan, Michael Ray, Kree Harrison, Runaway June, and Ryan Kinder!

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3. Fan Fair X 

Fan Fair X is one of the most versatile areas of the festival! Not only is it a great place to cool off and eat all the goodies you find at the food trucks lining the street! It’s also the home of 3 stages and it’s also where you meet the stars! There is the Radio Disney Stage which is always filled with fresh and upcoming talent! Kelsea Ballerini, Lauren Alaina and Megan and Liz were just a few of the acts featured on that stage last year! Also featured in Fan Fair x is The Durango Music Spot and The CMA Close Up stage!

You can find booths for all the major labels as well as some of the artists! You can also shop in the market place area which has a variety of things from clothes, to jewelry and more! To get into Fan Fair X you either need a 4 day pass or you can purchase a $10 pass for each day!
2. Nightly Concerts at Nissan Stadium The nightly concerts at Nissan Stadium are one of the biggest draws of the festival! In just 4 nights you can see 24 of country music’s biggest and brightest stars on the same stage! Also there is always a surprise or 2 that always happens! A full list of performers and what days they will be appearing are listed here.

CMA FEST: Nightly Concert Lineup Announced For Nissan Stadium!
1. The Surprises 

There are always a few surprises during CMA fest! They range from pop up shows in bars and on street corners to meet and greets that go on for hours. You never quite know where someone is going to pop up at and in the last few years social media has aided in being able to keep track of your favorite artist. Make sure you have the CMA Fest app downloaded as well as any other social media apps. Keep an eye on all of the accounts because a lot of artists have used them in the last few years to form ‘hunts’ around Nashville for various items! So if you are attending this year’s festival be sure to keep an eye out for any events that could pop up!
Are you excited for CMA Fest like we are? Keep an eye on the site as we will be posting more articles about the festival!

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Interview: Towne Talks New EP, Relationships and more! 

Meet the duo Towne. One of them is a music theater lover from Pennsylvania and the other is a former punk rocker from Kentucky. While Steevie  Steeves and Jon  Decious come from two very different backgrounds, they fit together perfectly as country duo Towne. The duo recently released their EP Games We Play as well as a music video for their song “The One I Love.” We had the chance to talk with Towne and ask them some questions about their EP as well as their Journey this far and their plans for CMA Fest! Check out their music video and our interview below!

WATCH THE MUSIC VIDEO FOR “THE ONE I LOVE”

INTERVIEW WITH TOWNE

Variety Beat: You recently released a video for the song you wrote: “The One I Love.” It’s a pretty emotional and powerful song, can you talk about the inspiration behind it?

Towne: The inspiration behind “The One I Love” came from a poem on a napkin that Steevie had kept in her wallet for years that an ex boyfriend of her’s had written. She had brought it up in a casual conversation but we thought it was a pretty unique idea, so we started putting chords to it and it just sort of fell out of the sky.

Variety Beat: You released your EP Games We Play last year, are any of those songs inspired by each other and is ever difficult to be completely honest when it comes to writing songs?

Towne: Absolutely! Being each other’s exes makes our past a pretty obvious subject matter. At times things might be tough to bring up at first, but we’re also best friends so it all eventually comes out. Sometimes we get lucky and it makes for good songs!

Variety Beat: What is your favorite part about writing music?

Towne: We love it all. From the start of the process when you’re just kicking around ideas, to putting chords to a melody, to that untouchable feeling we get when we finish a song we LOVE! There’s never a dull moment.

Variety Beat: Favorite things to do in your free time?

Towne:We’re really into running/taking hikes, reading new books (let us know if you can recommend any- we’re always looking for new ones), and just chilling out and taking a deep breath.

 

Variety Beat: What’s on your bucket list that isn’t music related?

Towne:
Jon: I’d like to write a book…but the book would probably be music-related.
Steevie: I want to travel to Thailand and explore…and, i dunno, maybe ride an elephant 🙂

Variety Beat: Will we be seeing you at CMA Fest?

Towne: We’re hoping so! Nothing scheduled at the moment but we’ve got our fingers crossed that that changes.

Towne’s EP Games We Play can be bought on all major digital retailers and the music video for “The One I Love” can be found on here. More Information can be found at their website.

Jason Aldean Scores His 18th #1 Single! 

Jason Aldean has scored his 18th number 1 single! The song “A Little Bit More Summertime” came out earlier this fall and quickly moved up the charts. It is the second single from his 7th studio album They Don’t Know which dropped on September 9th! The video for the song came out on the same day and it features a very special co-star! Aldean’s wife Brittany Kerr is in the video with him, playing the role of his lost love!

Aldean has had a busy year with his new album as well as his 2016 tour which was the Six String Circus tour which featured A Thousand Horses and Thomas Rhett. It kept the superstar criss-crossing the states as well as Canada and overseas. The tour is up for an award called the Rare Country Award and voting can be done at rare.us !

 

Since the tour finished a few weeks ago Aldean has been spending time with his family in Nashville and he’s been letting fans get a glimpse at his life off the stage. He and his wife have been sharing videos of them driving around Nashville showing us a different side to the superstar, his comedic side.

Just because Aldean is off tour doesn’t mean he stays away for the stage for long. In late October he played the Grand Ole Opry and flipped the switch to turn the Opry pink for breast cancer awareness. The Opry show served as Aldean’s Concert For A Cure that he holds every year in diffenert city and donates the money to that city’s branch of Susan G.Komen for the Cure. This Year he donated $450,853 to the Nashville branch!

Aldean’s next single will be the song “Any Ol’ Barstool.”.The song is about a guy dealing with the loss of a relationship and pretending that he’s fine when he’s really drowning his pain in alcohol. More information can be found at jasonaldean.com.

Kenny Chesney Announces 2017 Concert with Thomas Rhett and Old Dominion!

Kenny Chesney announced today that he would be playing one stadium show in 2017! This comes after the superstar announced that he would take a break from touring next year! Chesney will play at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. Gillette is almost always in Chesney’s list of tour stops. In a video on his social media accounts Chesney talks about how he couldn’t imagine his summer without making a visit to the Stadium.

The concert will happen on August 25, 2017 and coming along for the event will be Thomas Rhett and Old Dominion! Thomas Rhett’s 2017 is gearing up to be pretty busy as he is fixing to head out on his first headlining tour The Home Town Tour which kicks off in February!

Chesney has had a big year, he was on tour for much of 2016 and released a brand new album! The Spread The Love Tour which featured Miranda Lambert on the Stadium dates. Chesney also released a brand new studio album Cosmic Hallelujah a few weeks ago. He received the Pinnacle Award at the 50th annual CMA Awards earlier this month!

Tickets for Chesney’s Gillette Stadium show go on sale for American Express customers this week. Tickets will be available everywhere on December 2nd! For more information visit kennychesney.com

Recap of the 50th Annual CMA Awards and Complete Winners List!

Then. Now. Forever Country, Has been the catch phrase used to describe the CMA Awards for most of this year and they delivered tonight! The 50th annual broadcast kicked off with stars of the past and present joining together on legendary songs.

Vince Gill started the show off on a sober note  singing a tribute to Merle Haggard who passed away earlier this year with Haggard’s son Ben Haggard on guitar.

Then came host Brad Paisley with Roy Clark from Hee Haw fame. They launched into “Pickin’ and Grinning.” CMA award host Carrie Underwood belted out the Tammy Wynette classic “Stand By Your Man.” Charlie Pride joined Paisley for Pride’s song “Kiss An Angel Good Morning.” Alabama kept the nostalgia going with their song “Mountain Music.”

Paisley and Charlie Daniels team up on Daniels’s hit “Devil went down to Georgia.” Following Paisley and Daniels were Reba McEntire , Dwight Yoakam and Clint Black all singing their own songs! Wrapping up the opening performances was Ricky Skaggs and Paisley dueling guitars on Skaggs’s Song “Country Boy At Heart” then Alan Jackson brought 90’s country back to life with his hit “Don’t Rock The Juke Box.”

All through the opening numbers as an artist finished they stayed on the stage but moved to the background which led to the magical moment that took place at the end of the opening number. Paisley and Underwood brought Randy Travis to the stage and sang his hit song “Forever and Ever Amen” with Travis finishing the song out with the very last word Amen which was a miracle in its self since just a few months ago it was believed Travis would never sing again because of a stroke he suffered in 2013.


The opening performance set the stage for the entire show which was an amazing walk down memory lane as well as a look what the future  holds. The 50th annual CMA Awards from Nashville, TN saw many amazing team ups and moments that will for sure be remembered for years to come. The show featured performances by Brooks & Dunn with Superstar Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line with Tim McGraw, and Dierks Bentley and Elle King with their hit song “Different for Girls.”

Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood sang a melody of hits from years past including some iconic duets from some of country music’s greatest couples! Also Joining forces were Alan Jackson and George Strait who sang their songs “Remember When” and “Troubadour” which were used for the in memoriam portion of the awards show, which honored the memories of the stars that have passed on. Tonight’s award show also saw superstar Beyoncé joining The Dixie Chicks on the CMA Awards Stage!


As always there was plenty of jokes and songs from hosts Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, as always no topic was off-limits. There was jokes about the election, drinks named after artists, Willie Nelson‘s hobbies and of course there was some Tim McGraw and Faith Hill jokes.
While the night revolved around the country music of past, present and future it was also a night of honoring the accomplishments of many of the artist in attendance! This year’s awards saw a lot of artists taking home their first or second CMA awards as well as a country legend returning to the top!
The Winners of the 50th CMA Awards:

  • Single of the Year –Thomas Rhett “Die A Happy Man”
  • Song of the Year-“Humble and Kind” Lori McKenna
  • Musical Event of the Year- “Different For Girls” — Dierks Bentley featuring Elle King
  • New Artist of the Year- Maren Morris
  • Musician of the Year- Dann Huff (guitar)
  • Music Video of the Year- “Fire Away” — Chris Stapleton; directed by Tim Mattia
  • Album Of The Year-Eric ChurchMr. Misunderstood.
  • Vocal Duo Of The Year –Brothers Osbourne 
  • Vocal Group Of The Year- Little Big Town. 
  • Pinnacle Award-Kenny Chensey 
  • Female Vocalist Of The Year-Carrie Underwood
  • Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award –Dolly Parton 
  • Male Vocalist of The Year- Chris Stapleton
  • Entertainer Of They Year- Garth Brooks 

The Entertainer of The Year Award was presented to Brooks by Taylor Swift who returns to the CMA Awards stage after being absent from the awards show since 2014 when she crossed over to Pop music full-time!

The 50th annual award show was truly a magical night full of memories of the past and Excitement of the future! Congratulations to all of the winners!