Cowboy Corner

Cowboy Corner
By Michael W. Stout

HullabaLOU Music Fest Coming to Louisville This Summer

Churchill Downs Entertainment Group (CDE), which is in charge of scheduling entertainment at Louisville's legendary home of the Kentucky Derby, made a huge announcement last month, introducing the first annual HullabaLOU Music Festival scheduled for July 23-25 at Churchill Downs. This three-day festival will feature some of the biggest names in country music, as well as rock, bluegrass, classic rock and adult contemporary music — over 65 bands playing on five stages on the racetrack property. Although Kenny Chesney announced that he will not be touring this year, HullabaLOU is one of his few scheduled appearances; he'll headline the Saturday main stage show, along with Jason Aldean. Friday's main stage headliner will be Bon Jovi and Sunday's main stage headliner will be Chesney duet partner Dave Matthews Band. Other country artists scheduled to play the festival include Kentucky's own Loretta Lynn and Dwight Yoakam, along with Gloriana and the Zac Brown Band. Quint Davis, a consulting producer of HullabaLOU says, "The performers scheduled to appear at HullabaLOU will instantly put the event on the map of major music festivals in the country and be one of the top festival entertainment options in 2010."

The lineup as it currently stands is: Friday main stage, Bon Jovi. Friday festival stages: B-52's, Sam Bush, Colbie Caillat, Doobie Brothers, Gloriana, Gladys Knight, Richard Marx, Chrisette Michele and The O'Jays. Saturday main stage, Kenny Chesney and Jason Aldean. Saturday festival stages: Gov't Mule, Al Green, John Kay & Steppenwolf, Michael McDonald, Musiq Soulchild, Joan Osborne and War. Sunday main stage, Dave Matthews Band and the Zac Brown Band. Sunday festival stages: 38 Special, The Black Crowes, Kansas, Steve Miller Band, Loretta Lynn, Taj Mahal and Dwight Yoakam.

Tickets for HullabaLOU are already on sale and can be purchased online at www.hullabaloufest.com and www.ticketmaster.com, can be purchased in person at all Ticketmaster outlets and are available via phone by calling (800) 745-3000. Ticket prices begin at $60 for a one-day general admission ticket and go up to $975 for a three-day VIP package. On-site parking will be $25 per day and passes are only available for purchase in advance. Off-site parking will be $10 per day, which includes complimentary shuttle service to the festival. Gates will be open each day of the festival from 1:00 pm 11:00 pm. The festival will take place rain or shine.

Click on www.hullabaloufest.com for all the festival details, including up-to-date artist lineups.

Taylor Swift Tops Billboard's Year-End List

The brand-new, recently crowned Country Music Association Entertainer of the Year, 20-year-old Taylor Swift, had an unforgettable year. It seems like she broke every record possible and won every music industry award available. All of her chart-topping success helped earn her the title of Top Female Artist in 2009 from all genres of music by Billboard magazine. Swift was followed by Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears, Pink, Katy Perry, Kelly Clarkson, Rihanna and Keri Hilson. She was also named the top Country Artist of 2009, followed by Rascal Flatts, the Zac Brown Band, Keith Urban, Sugarland, Darius Rucker, Kenny Chesney, George Strait, Toby Keith and Jason Aldean.

Congratulations to Taylor and all the other country artists! Keep the music comin' throughout 2010!

Taylor Swift Sweeps AMA's

When the 2009 American Music Awards were handed out in late November, Taylor Swift was once again the big winner of the night, even though she was not on-hand as she was across the great pond, rehearsing for a concert in London the following night. Swift swept five categories, including Overall Artist of the Year, beating out Eminem, Kings of Leon, Lady Gaga and the late Michael Jackson. Accepting this top honor, Swift stated, "Music has never been, ultimately, about competition. To even be mentioned in a category with Michael Jackson, who we'll miss and love forever, is an unimaginable honor. I just want to say I'm sending my love to the Jackson family and Janet for reaching out to me the way you have."

In addition to Swift's Overall Artist of the Year award, she was named Favorite Female Country Artist, Favorite Female Pop/Rock Artist, Favorite Adult Contemporary Artist and her Fearless CD was named Favorite Country Album of the Year. Keith Urban was named Favorite Male Country Artist and Rascal Flatts was named Favorite Country Band, Duo or Group. The members of the new country group Gloriana pulled a major upset as they received the fan-voted Breakthrough Artist of the Year Award, sponsored by T-Mobile. Gloriana beat out Kid Cudi, Keri Hilson and the predicted winner, Lady Gaga.

Taylor Swift Tops Grammy Nominations

When the nominees for the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards were announced last month, country crossover phenomenon Taylor Swift was the top country contender with eight nominations, second only to pop songstress Beyonce, who, ironically, was the subject of Kanye West's rude tirade interrupting Swift's acceptance speech at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards. Swift will vie for Best Country Album of the Year for Fearless, Best Country Song and Best Country Female Vocal Performance for "White Horse," Best Pop Female Performance for "You Belong with Me," and Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals along with Colbie Caillat for "Breathe." Her Fearless will also compete against albums by Beyonce, the Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga and the Dave Matthews Band for overall Album of the Year for all genres of music. "You Belong with Me" is up for overall Record of the Year, along with Beyonce's "Halo," the Black Eyed Peas "I Gotta Feeling," the Kings of Leon's "Use Somebody," and Lady Gaga's "Poker Face." "You Belong with Me" will also vie for overall Song of the Year (a songwriter's award) along with Beyonce's "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)," Kings of Leon's "Use Somebody," Lady Gaga's "Poker Face," and Maxwell's "Pretty Wings."

And the country nominees are: Best Country Female Vocal Performance: Miranda Lambert's "Dead Flowers," Martina McBride's "I Just Call You Mine," Taylor Swift's "White Horse," Carrie Underwood's "Just a Dream," and Lee Ann Womack's "Solitary Thinkin'"; Best Country Male Vocal Performance: Trace Adkins' "All I Ask for Anymore," Billy Currington's "People Are Crazy," Jamey Johnson's "High Cost of Living," George Strait's "Living for the Night," and Keith Urban's "Sweet Thing"; Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals: Brooks & Dunn's "Cowgirls Don't Cry," Lady Antebellum's "I Run to You," Rascal Flatts' "Here Comes Goodbye," Sugarland's "It Happens," and Zac Brown Band's "Chicken Fried"; and Best Country Collaboration with Vocals: Dierks Bentley & Patty Griffin's "Beautiful World," Kenny Chesney & Mac McAnally's "Down the Road," Brad Paisley & Keith Urban's "Start a Band," Carrie Underwood & Randy Travis' "I Told You So," and Lee Ann Womack & George Strait's "Everything But Quits."

Best Country Song (songwriter award): "All I Ask for Anymore," "High Cost of Living," "I Run to You," "People Are Crazy," and "White Horse"; Best Country Album: George Strait's Twang, Taylor Swift's Fearless, Keith Urban's Defying Gravity, Lee Ann Womack's Call Me Crazy and Zac Brown Band's The Foundation; and Best Country Instrumental Performance: Alison Brown's "Under the (Five) Wire," The Greencards' "The Crystal Merchant," Sarah Jarosz's "Mansinneedof," and Steve Wariner's "Producer's Medley."

Other country nominations in non-country categories include: Zac Brown Band for overall Best New Artist (along with Keri Hilson, MGMT, Silversun Pickups and The Ting Tings), Willie Nelson's American Classic for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album, Willie Nelson & Asleep at the Wheel's Willie and the Wheel for Best Americana Album, Dolly Parton's 9 to 5: The Musical for Best Musical Show Album and Johnny Cash's Johnny Cash's America and Keith Urban's Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy World Tour Live for Best Long Form Music Video.

The 52nd Annual Grammy Awards will be handed out at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on January 31 and the ceremony will be broadcast live on CBS-Television. Congratulations to all the nominees!

Brooks & Dunn's Swan Song

As was reported here a few months ago, Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn, best known as Brooks & Dunn, will go their separate ways later this year, following their final concert tour, "The Last Rodeo Tour." The super-duo has just announced the itinerary for this highly anticipated, 47-city tour which will begin in Sacramento, California on April 23 and end in Chicago on August 8. Although B&D will not hit Louisville, local fans will have the opportunity to see the duo in Columbus or Cincinnati, Ohio, Charleston, West Virginia, Indianapolis, or St. Louis. The complete itinerary is: 4/23 Sacramento, California; 4/24 Mountain View, California; 4/25 Indio, California; 4/30 Spokane, Washington; 5/1 Tacoma, Washington; 5/2 Vancouver, Washington; 5/4 Calgary, Alberta; 5/5 Edmonton, Alberta; 5/6 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan; 5/14 St. Paul, Minnesota; 5/15 Bloomington, Illinois; 5/16 Columbus, Ohio; 5/21 Phoenix, Arizona; 5/22 Albuquerque, New Mexico; 5/27 Wichita, Kansas; 5/28 Tulsa, Oklahoma; 5/29 Dallas, Texas; 5/30 Baton Rouge, Louisiana; 6/3 Charleston, West Virginia; 6/4 Charlotte, North Carolina; 6/5 Raleigh, North Carolina; 6/11 Tampa, Florida; 6/12 West Palm Beach, Florida; 6/13 Jacksonville, Florida; 6/17 Hershey, Pennsylvania; 6/18 Virginia Beach, Virginia; 6/19 Washington, D.C.; 6/25 Hartford, Connecticut; 6/26 Boston, Massachusetts; 6/27 Bethel, New York; 6/29 Milwaukee, Wisconsin; 7/2 Dauphin, Manitoba; 7/8 Fort Loramie, Ohio; 7/9 Cleveland, Ohio; 7/10 Darien Lakes, New York; 7/15 Atlanta, Georgia; 7/16 Indianapolis, Indiana; 7/17 St. Clairsville, Ohio; 7/18 Cincinnati, Ohio; 7/23 Minot, North Dakota; 7/24 Cheyenne, Wyoming; 7/25 Omaha, Nebraska; 7/29 Detroit, Michigan; 7/30 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; 8/6 Kansas City, Kansas; 8/7 St. Louis, Missouri; and 8/8 Chicago, Illinois.

An additional concert will take place in Nashville on an unspecified date. Ticket information for "The Last Rodeo Tour" has not yet been released.

Well, that's it for this month. I'd like to take this opportunity to wish you and your family the happiest of New Years. Always remember: "Keep your boots shined up and your hat on straight, ‘cause country music is comin' your way."