Archives for category: Country Radio

Nashville, TN (April 4, 2012) – Country music Icon Dolly Parton just released her latest project, “An Evening with… Dolly”, which is a two-disc DVD/CD set available exclusively at all Cracker Barrel Old Country Store® locations. 

The double-disc set includes live performances of Dolly’s biggest hits, including 9 to 5, Jolene, Coat of Many Colors, Here You Come Again, Islands in the Stream, and I Will Always Love You, among others.  The package retails for $11.99 and is also available online at www.crackerbarrel.com.

Cracker Barrel has seen an influx of Bluegrass, Old Time Gospel and Classic Country stars in recent partnerships in the last few years, much like the Starbucks Music Marketing concept, Cracker Barrel is both a restaurant and a store and is very popular with fans of down home food and down home music.

Most recently, the most award winning Bluegrass duo, Daily & Vincent, has been successful with Cracker Barrel promotions.   

I’m jealous of Dolly’s guitar on the cover. It looks like a PRS SE single cutaway hollow body, but, it could be a custom build. If anybody knows, let me know.  The price point of the DVD-CD combo is ridiculous. Everybody should have a copy of this. Dolly started with promotion this week on Nightline and Inside edition and has upcoming appearances scheduled.

Friday April 6th, catch Dolly online for a special one-on-one question and answer session with Billboard.com as well as on the entertainment news magazine show EXTRA!

Saturday, April 7th, Dolly sits down with Rebecca Jarvis on CBS This Morning and Katie Cook for CMT Insider.

On Wednesday, April 11th Dolly will be featured on the mid-day syndicated The Better Show.

On Saturday, April 14th Dolly sits down with Governor Huckabee for Fox News Channel’s HUCKABEE.  The show will re-air on Sunday, April 15th.

In the coming weeks, Dolly Parton will also appear on ABC’s The Revolution with Tim Gunn, The Dr. Steve Show, Lifetime Television’s national morning show The Balancing Act, among others.

On the same date, a major announcement came from one of the last true rebels, and I wasn’t talking about Hank III, I was talking about Junior!

Mike Dennison, President of Blaster Entertainment, Hank Williams, Jr. and Tom Porter, CEO of Blaster Entertainment, sign exclusive agreement to distribute Hank's new CD.

Nashville, TN (April 4, 2012) – Blaster Entertainment, one of the country’s leading talent management and entertainment labels, and award-winning Country music recording artist Hank Williams, Jr. announced that they have entered into a worldwide exclusive three year licensing agreement. The new partnership comes only months before Williams’ highly anticipated new studio album release, which will hit retail in June.   The deal, which was signed this week, licenses Blaster Records, a division of Blaster Entertainment, to distribute Bocephus Records’ new release for the next three years.

“When I started Blaster Records a bit over five years ago, my goal was to create an entertainment company that became home to some of country music’s biggest stars,” said Tom Porter, CEO of Blaster Entertainment. “Hank Williams Jr. is a giant in the business and we are beyond excited to welcome him into the Blaster family.”

“I’m excited about this new album we’ve been working on,” Hank Williams Jr. said.  “When looking at labels, I had several choices.  When my team brought me the opportunity from Blaster and with the soon to be announced distribution deal, it was the best deal in town.  My fans will be able to find my music in places that common folks shop.  This is gonna be fun!” 

With more than 70 albums to his credit, sales of 55 million records, countless awards including 5-time Entertainer of the Year awards (ACM & CMA), BMI Icon Award, a Grammy, and most recently in 2009 the Academy of Country Music “Pioneer Award,” Williams is a living legend. His discography chronicles a bold profile of growth from adored offspring of a legendary father, to titan of the modern country rock movement in his own right. For two decades, America came to its collective feet each fall Monday night when this larger than life superman of a musician looked into the camera and unleashed the national anthem for viewers of Monday Night Football – ‘Are You Ready for Some Football.?’ Those simple words have won Williams an entirely new generation of fans and given him the distinction of being the first country performer to ever win an Emmy.
 
Blaster Entertainment is known for their unconventional, untraditional and by most people’s perception just plain fun way of doing business. The blending of Blaster and Williams is a perfect pairing. The mission of Blaster Entertainment is to service and support artists in all aspects of the business while creating new outlets for their music. The company prides itself on the ability to provide one-on one attention to all of their artists while developing new opportunities and alliances along the way.
 

A partnership with a combination, promotional and distribution arm seems to be the way to go nowadays.  Hank Jr. was able to stay in the news with, so-called controversy and right or wrong, he stuck to his guns and has to be admired for that.

– Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN     thenashvillebridge@hotmail.com

Acklen Park, Nashville skyline, Photo- Melody Hood

 Acklen Park kicked off the radio launch of “Great American Song” on Otter Rapids Music with co-writer, Shantell Ogden, at The Nashville Downtown Indigo Hotel on January 24th. It was a low key evening with friends for a song that has already taken off on radio.

The single was released a couple of weeks early to selected stations and was included in the “Starting to Rumble Facebook Face Off,” at Thunder 102. After going up six times against other new Music Row Charts singles and winning, the song was retired undefeated and included into regular rotation a week before the official drop date on January 26th. Marcum Stewart states, “We ended up winning six face offs in a row. We recorded the most votes in Thunder 102 history.” Andrea Villareal, the other side of Acklen Park joins in, “The first round we went up against Warner Brothers artists, Her & Kings County. We also won against Bucky Covington who has been out for a couple of years now. We couldn’t be more excited. “

The same is happening everywhere the song is turning up. Most recently “Great American Song” won another contest at KBOE in Oskaloosa, Iowa by votes from local listeners. As an independent release, the success of the single will be dependent on the ears of smaller market DJ’s that have some flexibility as well as listeners calling in and requesting the new single.

“Great American Song” is really a summer anthem, originally intended for a later release,but, Acklen Park’s radio promotions team were anxious to release the feel good upbeat anthem that goes hand in hand with celebrating our freedoms laying a foundation for the potential of a big summer hit.

Marcum was given some serious advice, “Our Promotions team made a lot of really valid points and they’re the pros. They do this every day, their advice was, “Well, honestly it takes a good seven to eight months to really get big action to even have a chance to even make it to the top 30 so if you even want a chance to do that by the time its seven months from now it’s going to be July anyway. “We took these thoughts to our Producer, Chris Utley and he said, “I couldn’t agree more.”

Acklen Park, Benchmark, Great American Song, background vocal session, me on the back row.

“Great American Song” was recorded at Benchmark Sound, one of the best studios on Nashville’s Music Row today with Chris Utley in the Producers chair. There was one big difference going in this time around. Although, the last album released early last year was a great project, Chris Utley and Acklen Park decided to kick it up a notch with some of Nashville’s best session players that have performance credits on Lady Antebellum, Keith Urban and other big time records. The sound is phenomenal with great lyrics, upbeat Country Rock with a solid hook.

Acklen Park has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help finance the video for the song. In its first week, the campaign has reached 20 percent of its goal. Kickstarter mainly known for funding Indie Rock releases is starting to see some Independent Country Artists such as Kelly Willis looking to fund projects. It gives the opportunity for fans to be backers and even be a part of a project.

Marcum has a clear picture of what they want to do, “Alright we need to make a video so how about we just go with that. We need funds to make the video. Radio station promotion costs a lot of money. Publicity costs a lot of money. Videos cost money so we just kind of went with what Kickstarter would allow us to do. I’m actually happier with that. I think that people are going to enjoy doing the video more than radio promotion anyway. We’re going to enjoy that more. We can allow people to be in the video.”

As they say at NSAI, “Every great song will find a home.”

Photo Courtesy - Meldoy Hood

Country fans can make this a big song if they want to the old fashioned way by supporting their local Country station and requesting “Great American Song,” purchasing the song for themselves and being a part of “The Making of The Great American Song Video.”

If you want to be a part of the making of the video you can go to their Kickstarter page by clicking here I want to be a part of The Making of The Great American Song Video by Acklen Park.

– Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN     thenashvillebridge@hotmail.com