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Image Courtesy FoxIs this the year that American Idol stages a big comeback? We’ll find out, starting tonight, as the 14th season of the once-legendary Fox reality competition premieres at 8 p.m. ET.

Last year, viewers were positive about the show’s new judging panel, featuring Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick Jr., all of whom are returning this year. But still, USA Today reports that for season 13, ratings were down for the third year straight, and for the first time, the show was out-gunned by NBC’s The Voice. Then, longtime Idol …read more

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Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleHunter Hayes‘ fans got him a Favorite Male Country Artist nomination at Wednesday night’s People’s Choice Awards. He’s up against Blake Shelton, Brad Paisley, Luke Bryan and Tim McGraw in the category, and Hunter is especially grateful for the fan-voted nod.

He says, “Fan-voted things are special because, you know, they’re voting from the heart. They see the shows. They listen to the music, and they see a lot of great performances, and they hear a lot of great music.”

Hunter spends most of his life committed to making his albums and live shows …read more

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Nashville Notes

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Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockFrankie Ballard will perform “Sunshine & Whiskey” and his new single, “Young & Crazy,” on ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live! this Thursday night.

Jerrod Niemann‘s wife, Morgan, will be featured on TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress Friday night at 9 ET. The show will feature Morgan’s search for the perfect wedding gown as well as footage from the couple’s wedding in Puerto Rico last October.

Chris Young recently performed his latest hit, “Lonely Eyes,” and a few other songs for MLB.com’s Fan Cave Concert Series. He also opened up about his music career and getting mistaken for …read more

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Image Courtesy Becky Fluke/EB MediaBrandy Clark is kicking off 2015 with a spot on a major tour and two big TV performances. She’s headed out with Alan Jackson on his 25th Anniversary tour starting this Thursday in Florida and running through mid-May. On Monday, January 12, Brandy will perform on ABC’s Good Morning America and NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers.

Brandy is up for Best New Artist and Best Country Album for 12 Stories at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards, airing February 8 on CBS. She won Song of the Year at the CMA Awards last …read more

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Image Courtesy Greenroom PRLady Antebellum will launch their Wheels Up 2015 tour with a run through Europe and Australia starting February 28. The North American leg of the trek will launch May 1 in Lubbock, Texas. Sam Hunt and Hunter Hayes are the opening acts on most of Lady A’s dates through the fall.

The group’s Charles Kelley says, “Being able to play off each other on that stage is honestly where we have the most fun, and I have a feeling the crowd will already be on their feet when we get out there after starting …read more

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Image Courtesy BMLG/StarstruckReba is back with a brand-new single, “Going Out Like That,” available now at iTunes. It’s the lead single from her upcoming studio album. As soon as she heard the song, Reba knew she wanted to have “Going Out Like That” on her new project.

“When you listen to thousands of songs trying to find just the right one to record, a really great song jumps out at you,” Reba says. “That’s exactly what ‘Going Out Like That’ did to me!”

“Going Out Like That” was originally written from a male perspective, but …read more

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Image Courtesy Warner Music NashvilleBlake Shelton will be the host and musical guest on NBC’s Saturday Night Live January 24. He joins the ranks of Garth Brooks, Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Taylor Swift as country artists who have performed double-duty on the show. Of course, Blake is one of NBC’s biggest stars these days, thanks to his role as a coach on The Voice.

It doesn’t look like Blake’s wife, Miranda Lambert, will be making a cameo on SNL, though. She’s got a show in West Virginia that night.

There are also rumors swirling that Blake is singing the …read more

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Image Courtesy Pearl/RCAGarth Brooks is taking his World Tour to Denver for the first time in more than 18 years. As always, Trisha Yearwood is on the bill with Garth for the two shows, set for March 20 and 21 at the Pepsi Center. Tickets go on sale Friday, January 16 at AltitudeTickets.com/Garth or 1-844-63GARTH.

Garth may add more shows once ticket demand is determined on the on-sale date.

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Comstock/ThinkstockMiranda Lambert and Chris Young both got their first national TV exposure competing on which singing competition? ANSWER: Nashville Star.

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Image Courtesy Mercury NashvilleScotty McCreery first got the nation’s attention trying out for American Idol with Josh Turner‘s decidedly country hit, “Your Man.” Since winning Idol in 2011, Scotty has blended his love of classic country with the current pop-influenced sounds of today to produce hits like “See You Tonight.” That’s all changing with his next album, though.

Scotty tells Rolling Stone, “I’m going to make a country music record. That’s what I had to try to convey to the label, and they were all for it. The stuff I grew up with …read more

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