Monday, January 31, 2011
Word is, a MAJOR Pop Star may be headed to Nashville...and could possibly team up with The Band Perry. Well, Neil and Kimberly Perry may have spilled the beans on an upcoming collaboration when they were asked who they'd most like to work with...Neil couldn't contain his excitement, and blurted out..."LADY GAGA"!!! Apparently, he's "Gaga for GAGA"!!! Kimberly jumped right in and gave us the scoop. Was it a hint?? See for yourself...I got it ALL on video!!! : )
Posted by Ashley Mann at 8:59 AM
Friday, January 28, 2011
Trace Adkins was in a dilemma over his new single…How could he make a music video for “Brown Chicken, Brown Cow” and then actually have it air on TV? Trace posted a video on his website…giving us a behind-the-scenes look at his solution for his new music video for “Brown Chicken, Brown Cow”
OK...I couldn't post the CNN version of the story...you'll have to go to Trace's website to see it: www.traceadkins.com
But...basically, it looks like the puppets act out the some of the scenes…using slapstick instead of smut to sell the song. It’s actually pretty funny. I'm looking forward to seeing the video!
Posted by Ashley Mann at 8:53 AM
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Well, Ronnie Dunn let the Eagle out of the bag...he spilled the beans about Don Henley’s secret Country album project. Ronnie told it all on his Facebook page:
“Sang on the new Don Henley record, Friday. Don, Alison Krauss and my unqualified self. I was in WAY over my head in that talent pool. Hope it came off to good. Also, Stan Lynch (Google that name...) another hero, was involved. Lucky me!”
I reported on Don Henley’s secret album project last week. Don snuck into town to record a Country compilation album of his favorite Country tunes in a studio right here on Music Row. Don’s long-time friend and producer Stan Lynch is producing the project. Stan’s the former drummer for the Rock band, ‘Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’…he’s also a hit songwriter for Country music…Tim McGraw actually recorded one of his songs on the “Live Like You Were Dyin” album. (Ronnie’s right…you should definitely google Stan Lynch).
I knew that Don Henley was calling on Country Stars to sing on this album project and has been really hush-hush about it…but now, thanks to Ronnie Dunn, we know that he and Alison Krauss will sing on one of the songs with Don.
This, by the way, this is Don Henley’s first solo album in 11 years. I’m predicting it's gonna be a BIGGIE.
And I'll keep digging to see who else is on the project...stay tuned! : )
Posted by Ashley Mann at 10:14 AM
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
A couple of prime time TV stars are giving Lady A a run for their money. Word is, Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" will be performed by the cast of the hit TV show, Glee, on a special episode following the Super Bowl on February 6th. In the TV show's episode, the cast is asked to perform a Valentine’s Day set list…and are assigned to sing “love songs."
The characters Finn and Rachel will supposedly choose to take on Charles Kelly and Hillary Scott and tackle “Need You Now.” They do such a great job...when I first heard it, I thought it was Hillary and Charles!!
Not bad, huh? It's kinda funny that Glee will air right after the super bowl…I wonder if any manly men who watch football will turn into Gleeks! : )
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:29 AM
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
The Band Perry celebrated their very first #1 Hit “If I Die Young” yesterday, at their very first #1 party on Music Row…and I got to help them celebrate it! I enjoyed spending time with them…and was so impressed by each of them! Even though Kimberly wrote the song by herself, it was a celebration for Neil and Reid, too...and the entire Perry family, for their 10 years of hard work and support for their career. Their mom was at the #1 party...I didn't get a chance to speak to her, and I'm bummed about that. I know that those three talented kids are a product of some incredible parents.
A couple of hours before the party yesterday, I got an email, telling me that Kimberly was sick and having some trouble with her voice. I was expecting to read “the party’s been cancelled”…but nope…Kimberly wasn’t going to let anything get in the way of the fun. And this wasn’t just her moment…it was a big deal for all 3 of them.
When talking to them…first of all Kimberly didn’t act sick at all...and I thought this would be a chance for Neil and Reid to get their 2 cents in while Kimberly wasn’t able to talk! : ) But Kimberly was just as spunky as ever! And theirs isn't the typical sibling relationship...at least they don't bicker and fight like I did with my brother and sister....Kimberly, Neil and Reid are a great combination and balance for each other. They all get along.
But what impressed me most about The Band Perry is the relationship they have with their fans. That proved to be true when watching the fans' reaction to their song, "If I Die Young"...when they performed it last week at the ACM Showcase taping at the Ryman. Fans sang along with tears in their eyes. Clearly, that song connects on an emotional level with their fans....
"If I Die Young" has also just been nominated for a Grammy for Country Song of the Year. So it's also connecting with their peers...AND like Neil says, "The Grammys is like the Super Bowl of Awards Shows"....It's a big deal! : )
Congratulations Kimberly, Neil and Reid...for an incredible debut year for The Band Perry!!
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:56 AM
Monday, January 24, 2011
Brad Paisley’s been pretty hush-hush about his upcoming album. He was in town all last week working on it…he even posted a picture of one of his songs (it was a picture of the track mixes on the computer screen). And Brad tweeted, “Don’t know how it sounds but it LOOKS fantastic!”.
Well, I actually stumbled on a secret project that Brad is working on for this new album…and I gotta tell ya…it’s pretty cool! Apparently, Brad is collaborating with a Legendary Country Group for a song on his new album. Word is, the song is about a girl who only "gets in the mood" when she hears Alabama songs.
So Brad reached out to Randy Owen, Teddy Gentry and Jeff Cook, who are of course the members of the band, Alabama, and they each sang on Brad’s song. They recorded their parts separately last week…Randy sang first. I was in the studio with Teddy on Wednesday and learned that Brad was on his way to record Teddy's vocals. When I talked to Jeff Cook at Teddy’s Birthday Bash on Friday night, he said he sang his part and played (I’m assuming a fiddle part) on the song on Tuesday last week. I don’t know for sure which Alabama song they recorded for Brad…but I think I’ve got a pretty good guess….
I LOVE that Brad is featuring Alabama on his new album! Could this collaboration mean a future tour schedule for Alabama...to go out on the road with Brad?
Alabama has a lot of things cookin' right now (They also sing on the Waylon Jenning's Tribute album and have the first single "Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way". Check it out at Waylonjennings.com)
Don't know for certain, but I think I'm smellin' a come-back for Alabama!
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:10 AM
Friday, January 21, 2011
Sugarland fans are unique, I've learned. Sometimes they call themselves "Sugar Freaks", but it’s actually a close-knit community of people who are inspired by Sugarland’s music. One of Sugarland’s fans, a named Erica was so moved by the band’s new single “Little Miss” that she decided to create a video, calling her video campaign, “the Little Miss Project”.
She reached out to the Sugarland fan-club and asked fellow "Sugar Freaks" to send in video clips of themselves, holding up notebooks with hand-written statements about their biggest fears and challenges…and then on the flip side of the paper she asked them to write a line from the Sugarland song that inspired them the most. The response was overwhelming! She pieced the video clips together to make a touching music video for the song…and I gotta tell you…when I saw the video for the first time, it brought tears to my eyes…it is SO well-done.
Well, the “Little Miss Project” has gone viral, to say the least; and it got the band’s attention. Now Jennifer and Kristian have the video posted on their website, along with Erica’s story…and they’re reaching out to even MORE fans to participate in the Little Miss Project. Looks like they’re going to make it their REAL music video!!
I reached out to Erica…and she’s THRILLED, of course. She said “it started out being a fun little project, but turned into a work of art…and she says I can’t wait to see where the Little Miss Project goes next!!”
Here's the video...better grab your box of kleenex first...
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 10:24 AM
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Faith Hill is teaming up with the Rock and Roll band, the Pretenders for the latest CMT Crossroads. OK, let me tell you why this is such a big deal….
This is Faith’s first ever Crossroads…and Faith and The Pretenders will be performing LIVE!!! They will air LIVE from Grand Prairie, Texas, on Feb. 5, the night before the Super Bowl. It’s only the second time the series has ever aired live. ANYTHING could happen! You know how those show tapings normally go….if you’ve ever been to one, they usually have to do songs over and over again to work out the kinks. So this will be very interesting to watch.
Plus, they have the show scheduled during the NFL Pepsi Super Bowl Fan Jam….and everybody knows Faith’s ties to Sunday Night Football. She's gotten pretty good at predicting who will win the games (her picks are posted in The Tennessean).
I’m predicting…a BiG Win for CMT.
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:17 AM
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Guess who’s been secretly performing in Nashville? It’s a legendary Rocker…you ready for this? Robert Plant! He rehearsed in Nashville this week on the down-low with his reunited Band of Joy group. According to some folks who "happened upon" the rehearsals, they sound amazing! One source even commented, “Robert Plant has to rehearse?!”
There’s a reason why his new band sounds so good…the band includes some Nashville-based Big-Time musicians and performers…Patty Griffin and Emmylou Harris will even join him for some shows on their tour. Robert Plant's Band of Joy tour kicked off last night in Asheville, North Carolina.
You know, when I first got wind of these secret rehearsals…I was kind of hoping Robert was working on a new project with Alison Krauss. But it looks like we’re gonna have to wait a while for those two to record a follow-up album to their 5-time Grammy Award winning album “Raising Sand”. They actually recorded a session together in 2009, but according to Robert, “The sound just wasn’t there.” But he did promise they will "come back to it". Hope that will be soon!
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:00 AM
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman are the proud parents of another baby girl…born via a surrogate mother and a secret pregnancy. Sources say, Faith Margaret Urban was born right here in Nashville at Centennial Medical Center on December 28; and Keith and Nicole are the biological parents.
It’s really an amazing story and a total shock to the world that they managed to keep all of this a secret! Word is, according to TMZ...Nicole and Keith had it all figured out...they would sneak into the hospital…even last week they did this, to visit the baby and the surrogate mother while both were recovering. Keith and Nicole supposedly entered the hospital through a back door, then took a service elevator to the top floor, which they rented exclusively for themselves. I didn't know a hospital could do something like that...But apparently they do or did so just for them, at least. So Keith and Nicole made secret visits to the hospital for a couple of weeks after the baby was born; but now, supposedly, the baby is home.
And all of this was kept secret! Nicole and Keith were even at the Golden Globes on Sunday night, but nobody knew a thing about it until they were ready to tell the world about Faith.
Keith and Nicole released a statement yesterday saying, " No words can adequately convey the incredible gratitude that we feel for everyone who was so supportive throughout this process, in particular our gestational carrier."
Congratulations to the entire Urban family!
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:26 AM
Monday, January 17, 2011
A Rock and Roll Icon is coming to Nashville to secretly record a Country Album. This is top-secret stuff…apparently, starting TODAY, Don Henley will begin recording an album of Country Classics…and a whole lot of Country Music Stars will be lending their voices on the album.
The project is being produced by Don’s long-time friend and record producer, Stan Lynch…who was the original drummer for the Rock band, “Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.” There’s no official word on which Country Music Stars will be joining Don Henley in the recording studio this week; but I’ve heard there will be “plenty of ‘em” on the album!!
Don Henley’s no stranger to Country Music…I still love his collaboration with Trisha Yearwood on “Walk Away Joe”. And his producer, Stan Lynch is also a big songwriter with Country-ties, too…even Tim McGraw recorded one of his songs called ”Back When”…it was on Tim’s “Live Like You Were Dying" album.
I’m just excited to hear more about Don Henley’s project…sounds like it’s going to be pretty cool.
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 8:43 AM
Friday, January 14, 2011
Nicole Kidman says when she first met Keith Urban, she was compelled to get down on her knees….and PRAY. Come on...get your head out of the gutter! It’s actually a very sweet story!
So Nicole said, “I remember thinking, Oh, my God, if you ever gave me a man like that, I promise I would be completely devoted for the rest of my life.” Well, she told this to another famous Hollywood actress, Jennifer Aniston, while Jennifer was a guest interviewer for Harper’s Bazaar Magazine.
Nicole also said that if she couldn’t have Keith, she prayed that someone like him would come along. Of course we all know how that story goes…Nicole and Keith were married in 2006 and have their precious, little two-and-a-half year old daughter, Sunday Rose.
Well, after the interview, Jennifer told Nicole that she was “inspired” by their relationship and that she aspires to have the same one day.
Well, Jen's no different than the rest of us...I know I've prayed for a relationship with Keith Urban, too!! : )
Keith and Nicole will be making an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show next week...they really are a sweet couple!
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:51 AM
Thursday, January 13, 2011
The legendary Country duo, the Bellamy Brothers are claiming Britney Spears ripped them off! They’re claiming Britney’s brand new single, "Hold It Against Me," sounds an awful lot like their 1979 hit, "If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body, Would You Hold It Against Me." Remember this song?
The Bellamy Brothers discovered all of this, after Britney’s song was leaked to the web on Monday, and they saw views of their song on the internet soar to almost 300-thousand views overnight. David Bellamy says, "If you listen to the lyrics…you’ll find some major similarities.”
Check it out...
David Bellamy says he and his brother Howard "have no personal beef with Britney "But professionally, well, in all honesty, we feel completely ripped off. Where's the originality?" Then Howard said, "Hey Brit... If I said you ripped off our song, would you hold it against me? Thanks."
Not sure how far they'll get with copyright laws on this one...
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:40 AM
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
After news of the split between Taylor Swift and Jake Gyllenhaal hit the web, gossip sites have been a-buzz with speculations about their short-lived relationship. There have been a lot of rumors about why they may have broken up…but I just accepted the fact that I’d have to wait for Taylor’s next album to come out, so I can hear all the juicy details in the song she wrote about him.
But maybe turning 21 has brought a new level of maturity to Taylor…or maybe it’s a sore subject or just too difficult to deal with…but Taylor has promised NOT to write a song about Jake. According to a source that’s supposedly friends with Jake…Jake and Taylor “remain close friends and Taylor has promised nothing from their relationship is going to end up in a song.”
Bummer. So I’m thinking we should write one for her…you know, they didn’t date very long…all they really had time for was just a few dates at coffee houses…we could call the song, “I Go Back to the Starbucks”...instead of ‘Back to December’ No? Maybe?
Posted by Ashley Mann at 8:57 AM
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Yikes! LeAnn Rimes and reality-TV star Kate Gosselin seem to have something in common...
A gossip site has posted some side-by-side photos of LeAnn and Kate dressed in bikinis. The pictures were taken of the two while they were on separate vacations over the holidays…and it looks like they’re both showing off identical tattoos…located in the same spot on their bodies…just above the bikini line!
There’s no official word on who got the tattoo first…no one’s sure if Kate’s has always been there, or if its brand new. Now, there is a picture of LeAnn that was taken back in March, and you can see the tattoo in the photo.
But it’s still shocking to see the side-by-side pictures. Looks like the same tattoo to me...
Posted by Ashley Mann at 9:12 AM
Monday, January 10, 2011
Shania Twain has been enjoying somewhat of a comeback these last few weeks…she’s been in the news a lot lately… a new marriage…a new tell-all book…and an new reality TV show that will air in the spring on the Oprah Winfrey Network. Shania’s got a lot going on…so naturally, I assumed a new album is also on the way.
Well, unfortunately, according to Shania…that may never happen. Shania told the Toronto Sun, "I have lost my ability to express myself and my ability to sing... For some reason, I'm not comfortable singing in front of people anymore.” She said the pressure from achieving super-stardom actually killed her confidence…and after her marriage to her producer, Mutt Lange, failed…Shania said she felt “a real death”. She’s hoping the TV show will help her come out of her shell and get comfortable with herself again.
On her show, "Why Not, With Shania Twain", Shania will go on the road and talk to regular folks, hoping to learn from their “big disappointments and deep life struggles”...and just maybe...she'll be inspired to sing again. I sure hope so...
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 7:04 AM
Friday, January 7, 2011
Many Country Stars never get over the "National Anthem Nerves". Our National Anthem is a song that even the best singers worry about messing up...
Darius Rucker says he still gets nervous singing it…because he’s seen some major anthem disasters. Darius says choosing the right key to sing it in; that's the tough part. He says you don't want to start out singing it too high, because you'll be in trouble at the end.
Randy Houser says singing it is the easy part...it's the words that you have to worry about. He says it's tough to remember the words; and it’s easy to "freak out" under all that pressure.
Well, that’s exactly what happened to Mike Eli of the Eli Young Band recently at a Kansas City Chiefs game a few weeks ago. He totally freaked out...
It’s a singer’s worst nightmare! Oh, and that crowd showed no mercy. People are still talking about it. I feel awful for Mike. He's a great singer, obviously, but he forgot the words, got lost and just couldn't get back on track. Mike issued an apology, saying, "I take singing the National Anthem very seriously....and hope to knock it out of the park next time."
Well, then there’s Little Big Town…they sang the National Anthem at the Orange Bowl on Monday Nite…and people are still talking about their performance, too…but for the opposite reason…
They NAILED it!! You can watch them sing it LIVE tonight at Cowboy Stadium…for the Cotton Bowl.
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 8:54 AM
Thursday, January 6, 2011
Carrie Underwood has never really made any political statements, nor has she officially backed any political candidates or parties….but she may be singing on Capital Hill…and her voice may be used to attack the President!
Apparently, without her knowledge, Carrie’s song "Undo It" has become somewhat of a "battle cry" for some new House Republicans who are against Democrats and President Obama and policies they support. According to the New York Times, "Many Republicans seem to have latched on to 'Undo It,'as the refrain for their planned attack" (against Obama’s healthcare overhaul).
So it looks like Carrie has been thrown into the world of politics, without her consent.
Like Carrie, I'm not one for getting into political debates, either. It did make me think about song selection, though. What Carrie Underwood song would they have chosen if Bush was still in office?...."Jesus Take the Wheel"? Would they have chosen "Cowboy Casanova" for President Clinton??
And why in the world didn't they choose "Temporary Home" for Obama? : )
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 6:53 AM
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
LeAnn Rimes is in the news again. This time, pictures of her in a bikini on vacay with her fiance' (Eddie Cibrian) in Mexico on New Year's Day have sparked a rumor. Apparently…besides the engagement ring, it seems LeAnn got another present for Christmas this year…looks like she may have had some plastic surgery… looks like she may have had a breast enhancement.
Ok, so she may have had a boob job…she may have.
And word is, supposedly, LeAnn used the same plastic surgeon that her finace’s ex-wife used. LeAnn tweeted the day before the sites posted the pictures, saying that the news we would be hearing is “untrue”…I think she actually tweeted that it was, quote: "BS". I’m not sure if she was talking about the surgery or the surgeon…or all of it.
Folks are making a big deal about it because she was just on the cover of Shape magazine back in October, she looked fantastic (that’s why they chose her for the cover in the first place)…but she was noticeably smaller than these new pictures of her.
If you ask me (and nobody is), I think she looks great...both before AND after.
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 10:41 AM
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Tim McGraw just announced that he and his band, the Dancehall Doctors, will begin touring this spring, for what he’s calling the "Emotional Traffic Tour". Tim has invited some folks to come along…Luke Bryan and The Band Perry have signed on to do some shows. So, I’m just waiting for the next guest artist to be announced…
Word is, Tim’s been bugging his Country Strong co-star, Gwyneth Paltrow, about going on the road with him. Gwyneth said she thinks Tim’s just joking, but she’s told him, “Let’s do it. Let’s make it happen. I don’t know about a whole tour but a string of nights could be fun!” Well, so far, it’s just been a bunch of banter between friends, because there hasn’t been an official announcement or anything…but it’s definitely possible that Gwyneth could join Tim for a few shows on this tour.
I’d like to see Gwyneth in concert. She’s certainly no stranger to the road…after all, her husband, Chris Martin, is the lead singer for the band, Coldplay. And word is, Gwyneth and Faith Hill are BFF’s now…so it would be one big happy family on the road.
So, there you go Tim...adding Gwyneth to the tour is definitely a great idea!
Take care and talk soon,
Ashley "Mann on the Row"
Posted by Ashley Mann at 7:33 AM
Monday, January 3, 2011
Country Superstar Shania Twain is a married woman!!! She tied-the-knot with Frederic Thiebaud on New Year’s Day. The wedding took place at sunset on the beach in Rincon, Puerto Rico, a celebrity hide-away known as the “Town of Beautiful Sunsets”…only 40 of their closest family and friends attended the ceremony.
It’s a new year and a new start for Shania and Frederic…the two were brought together by a scandal...both of their spouses (allegedly) had an affair 2 years ago, which brought an end to both of their marriages…and word is, their ex’s are still together. Shania wrote a letter to her fans announcing their engagement late last month, saying she and Frederic found comfort in one another during a difficult time…and that quickly turned into LOVE.
The official wedding announcement was posted on Shania's website today...it said Shania wore Calvin Klein shoes, Lorraine Schwartz jewelry and a dress she bought at a small boutique in Lausanne, Switzerland. I love it that she didn't go over-the-top with a huge wedding and a designer gown...she kept it simple and beautiful. (I wish I knew who made the dress, though...I'd LOVE a gown like that for my wedding!)
So Shania has a promising 2011 ahead of her both personally and professionally. She has a new man, new marriage AND a new TV show called “Why Not with Shania Twain” that will air in the spring on the new Oprah Winfrey Network. She even has a tell-all book coming out in the spring. So we'll be seeing LOTS of Shania in 2011! Hopefully, we'll get to hear some new music from her, too...
Congratulations, Shania!! You are a BEAUTIFUL Bride!!
Congratulations, Shania!! You are a BEAUTIFUL Bride!!
Take care and talk soon,
Ashley "Mann on the Row"
Posted by Ashley Mann at 6:06 PM
Saturday, January 1, 2011
For my very first blog post, I felt it was appropriate to begin with Garth Brooks...It was an important day for me...and not just because he's probably the biggest star in Country Music, and he's pretty much like Elvis to me...or because Garth is married to Trisha Yearwood, and she is the reason I wanted to sing Country Music. I didn't realize what role Garth would play in my life, until that day.
Garth held a press conference at the State Capital Building in Nashville, and I was there, along with all national and local media (I do the entertainment report, called "The Nashville Buzz" on 95.5 FM WSM's Morning Show in Nashville). We were told Garth had a "Big Announcement", but no one knew what that was...there was speculation that he would be performing a concert in Nashville to benefit local flood relief.
I was hoping this was true, because I was personally affected by it...my fiance' lost everything in the flood. Six months after the flood, we were (and still are) trying to recover and rebuild. The money from FEMA didn't come close to covering the cost of the rebuild, much less all of the contents of the place. There had been other flood concerts, just after the flood...and the money raised went to the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee....but we never received any assistance from them. We had been told that we qualified for a "loan"...which is not what we expected to hear, nor is it what we needed. At first, we felt pretty hopeless... but that was quickly followed by a "pick yourself up and get it done the best you can all by yourself" attitude...and that's where we are. Which is the state of many in Nashville who were hit by the flood. And like most of his neighbors, my fiance is still discovering things that he lost. For example...we realized when it snowed on Christmas day that he doesn't have a winter coat.
I made sure that I arrived early to the press conference, so I could set up all of my recording equipment. I brought the "brick", which is a big, box-y recording device with a mile-long cord...and my brand new, shiny flash-mic that the station ordered just for me to use when interviewing artists (ok, I share it with whomever wants to use it at the station, but so far only one other person has used it). I was first to arrive at the press conference...so I got a front row seat, on the end, right in front of the podium. I had my flip camera ready...and my cell phone ready to call-in to the radio station with the breaking news.
There was a row of chairs at the front, labeled with the names of who'd be occupying them...Garth...the Governor of TN...the mayor...the head of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. So, I knew it had to be about Flood Relief.
Just before the conference started, a woman came up to me and put an extra chair beside me...to be used for a "VIP, to say the least," she said. She asked if I would reserve the seat for this mystery person, so of course, I did....deep down, hoping it would be for Trisha Yearwood. Sure enough....Trisha walked in beside Garth and sat beside ME!! I asked if I could take a quick picture...she was happy to...but I was only able to get the top of our heads. : )
Garth announced his flood relief concert that day...and said as long as tickets were selling, he'd continue to have concerts...the concerts would be held around Christmas-time, because he knew it would be a tough time for those who lost everything. He was right. Garth said ALL the money would go to help those affected by the Nashville flood...via the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee. Many questions were asked by the press...but all were about the concerts and Garth...and whether this was officially the start of his "come-back". No one was asking questions about where the money was going, or anything on behalf of the flood victims (I hate the word "victim", by the way)...I wanted to...but I had a huge lump in my throat and was afraid I would get emotional and look like a fool on national TV. I said a prayer... "Dear God, if you allow me the opportunity to talk to Garth by myself, with no one around, I promise I'll ask him about the money." It was basically me letting myself off the hook...because I knew there was no way I'd ever be alone with Garth. There were hundreds of folks there who worked for the press...BIG national news anchors and other folks I recognized from TV. So if anyone would get one-on-one time with Garth...it would be them, not me.
But a prayer is a powerful thing, and God was going to hold me to my word. I was the only one to get one-on-one time with Garth that day...I walked down the hallway, turned a corner and there he was. We stepped into a library...we introduced ourselves...and he hugged me, right off the bat! I couldn't help it...I got choked up when I told him my fiance's story and how difficult it had been for him as well as his neighbors to get to any money that had been raised. Garth listened with the most compassionate look on his face...I told him I knew that he had the ability to raise more than anyone could...there was no doubt millions of dollars would be raised...I asked him if he would personally follow through after the concerts. Little did I know that my question would fuel him to put a plan into action to make certain all of the funds raised would get to the ones who need it most. Garth's "come-back" announcement wasn't about his career...it wasn't about him at all, really...his genuine intention was for his concerts to be a come-back for every person in Nashville who was devastated by the flood. So it was our come-back.
Here's our conversation (follow this link to the station website: www.955fmwsm.com)...as well as a picture of Garth and me, taken at the press conference.
Happy New Year, Everybody!!! Here's to making a "come-back"!!
Take care and talk soon,
Posted by Ashley Mann at 2:07 PM