Thursday, February 18, 2016


Florida Georgia Line Plot Dig Your Roots Tour

Florida Georgia Line Plot Dig Your Roots Tour:

Florida Georgia Line's Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard spent a generous portion of 2015 traveling the country on their Anything Goes tour, accumulating an assortment of ACM and CMA Awards hardware along the way. Their singles "Dirt," "Sippin' on Fire," "Sun Daze" and "Anything Goes" all ascended to the top of Billboard's Country Airplay chart and CMT named the duo one of its Artists of the Year. Rather than taking a much-deserved break in 2016, the pair will hit the road once again for the Dig Your Roots tour.

Joining Kelley and Hubbard for the trek will be guests Cole Swindell, The Cadillac Three and Kane Brown. Swindell recently released a new single, "You Should Be Here," while Cadillac Three are releasing the single "Graffiti" to fans in the United Kingdom. Viral star Brown is prepping for his first major release. FGL's latest single is "Confession" from the album Anything Goes, but this tour should feature music from their upcoming album.

“Tyler and I are going to make this year very personal with the Dig Your Roots Tour," said Kelley in a statement. "We want our fans to feel right at home with us as they learn more about our story and we learn about theirs. From Kane Brown, to The Cadillac Three, to Cole Swindell, there is not a dull moment in this show. We are so thankful that we get to bring some of our closest friends on this journey.”

Dates for the tour have not yet been announced, but tickets go on sale for select cities starting January 29th.

Here are the cities confirmed for Florida Georgia Line's Dig Your Roots tour (in alphabetical order):

Albuquerque, NM
Bangor, ME
Billings, MT
Bismarck, ND
Bristow, VA
Brownsville, OR
Charlotte, NC
Cheyenne, WY
Columbus, OH
Cullman, AL
Darien Center, NY
Daytona Beach, FL
Des Moines, IA
Eau Claire, WI
Erie, PA
Evansville, IN
Ft. Wayne, IN
Gilford, NH
Grand Fords, ND
Hartford, CT
Holmdel, NJIndianapolis
Irvine, CA
Kansas City, MO
Lake Tahoe, NV
Lexington, KY
London, ON
Monticello, IA
Mountain View, CA
Mt. Pleasant, MI
Myrtle Beach, SC
Orange Beach, AL
Point-du-Chene, NB
Raleigh, NC
Rapid City, SD
Sacramento, CA
Salt Lake City, UT
San Diego
Saratoga Springs, NY
Sioux Falls, SD
St. Louis
Syracuse, NY
Toronto, ON
Tupelo, MS
Twin Lakes, WI
Virginia Beach, VA
Wantagh, NY

Original enclosures:

Cyndi Lauper, Kelsea Ballerini Team For Skyville Live

Cyndi Lauper, Kelsea Ballerini Team For Skyville Live:

Pop icon Cyndi Lauper headlines the latest installment of the Emmy-nominated online concert series Skyville Live next week. Titled "Girls Just Wanna Have Friends," the event streams live from Nashville on Thursday, January 28th, beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET. Lauper's special guests include country chart-topper Kelsea Ballerini and indie-pop superstar Ingrid Michaelson. The upcoming episode will stream live on the free mobile video platform go90, which is available across all wireless carriers.

Having sold 50 million albums since her 1983 debut She's So Unusual, Lauper is prepping for the release of her 11th LP this year. Titled Detour, it is the Grammy- and Tony-winning musician's first foray into classic country music and will feature a guest appearance from Willie Nelson. The singer, whose previous recording projects include covering jazz standards and blues classics, will issue the album on Sire Records, which she calls her "dream label." Overseeing the LP as executive producer will be Sire founder Seymour Stein, and Lauper made another dream come true by working with Nashville recording legend Tony Brown, who (among countless other credits) played piano for Elvis Presley and produced dozens of hits for Reba and George Strait. Lauper's musically diverse career, she notes, is a direct reflection of her New York upbringing.

"I heard someone say that sometimes your childhood defines the music or the things you think in your life," Lauper tells Rolling Stone Country. "My childhood was a mixture of things, but if you went by Aunt Gracie's kitchen, she was playing the country music station. I think it's a little bit of that in there and that's what reminds me of her."

Since debuting in January 2015, highlights of Skyville Live include Chris Stapleton paying tribute to Gregg Allman, Lady Antebellum, Jason Isbell and Brandy Clark celebrating Kris Kristofferson, and Martina McBride teaming with Gladys Knight for the inaugural webcast last year. Before moving to the Skyville studios — and to the worldwide web — the series began as a small local show put on by Music Row moguls Wally Wilson and Paul Worley — the owners of Skyville artist development and publishing company — to showcase their new acts.

Original enclosures:

At the Drive-In Working on New Music, Plot Tour

At the Drive-In Working on New Music, Plot Tour:

Texas post-hardcore heroes At the Drive-In will complement a few previously scheduled festival appearances with a 27-date world tour while continuing to work on new music, Fuse reports.

"We're all excited to be seeing each other, to be playing in a room again, and to be making music under a new context," said guitarist Omar Rodríguez-López. "This is where we all came from. We have different families now, we live in different places, but these are our roots, and a true person never forgets their roots. There's a safety in being around people you trust."

The new material would potentially comprise the first At the Drive-In album since 2000's Relationship of Command. The group had climbed the alt-rock ranks since forming in 1993, scoring a minor radio hit with Relationship of Command single "One Armed Scissor." But after six exhausting years of touring and recording, the group decided to split in 2001 to focus on other projects.

At the Drive-In reunited in 2012 for a string of festival appearances, which inspired them to start writing again and hit the road. While there are no concrete plans for an album yet, drummer Tony Hajjar said, "We're sending emails to each other with pieces of music or full songs, and are putting them together until we can have them all on a hard drive and are listening to them in the same room together."

At the Drive-In will kick off their 2016 trek on March 23rd at the Fonda Theatre in Los Angeles before heading to Europe for a string of dates. The group begins a stateside leg on May 15th at the Shaky Knees Festival in Atlanta. A list of dates is below, though the group will announce more concerts in the future.

At the Drive-In Tour Dates

March 23 – Hollywood, CA @ Fonda Theatre
March 26 — Dublin, IE @ Vicar Street
March 27 — London, UK @ Roundhouse
March 29 – Paris, FR @ Le Trianon
March 30 – Cologne, DE @ Palladium
March 31 – Amsterdam, NL @ Melkweg
April 1 – Brussels, BE @ Ancienne Belgique
April 4 – Berlin, DE @ Columbiahalle
April 5 – Vienna, AT @ Vienna Arena
April 7 – Milan, IT @ Fabrique
April 8-9 – Lausanne, CH @ Impetus Festival
April 10 – Barcelona, ES @ Razzmatazz
May 13-15 – Atlanta, GA @ Shaky Knees Music Festival
May 17 – Nashville, TN @ Marathon Music Works
May 19 – Chicago, IL @ Riviera Theatre
May 20-22 – Columbus, OH @ Rock on the Range Music Festival
June 3 – San Francisco, CA @ The Warfield
June 5 – Portland, OR @ McMenamins Crystal Ballroom
June 7 – Vancouver, BC @ Commodore Ballroom
June 8 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox Sodo
June 11 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Fillmore
June 14 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
June 17 – New York, NY @ Terminal 5
June 18 – Boston, MA @ House of Blues
June 21 – Detroit, MI @ St. Andrews Hall
June 23 – Toronto, ON @ Phoenix Concert Hall

Original enclosures:

See Miranda Lambert Perform Unreleased Song 'Scars'

See Miranda Lambert Perform Unreleased Song 'Scars':

Performing an unplugged show at Nashville's City Winery last night, Miranda Lambert scaled back her usual production and ramped up the guest list, with nearly a dozen artists joining her throughout the night.

Maren Morris, Ashley Monroe, Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley and hit songwriter Shane McAnally were among the musicians who spent time onstage, with everyone swapping songs and strumming acoustic guitars. Lambert also shone a light on a member of her own team, bandmate Scotty Wray, who's been playing guitar and co-writing songs with the Platinum singer since her 2005 debut, Kerosene.

"This song is. . .Oh god, I hope I don't cry when I sing it," she said at one point, while introducing one of Wray's original numbers. "[Scotty] wrote this song 16 years ago, the year before I met him, and I have been in love with it for that long."

While the song's own author played guitar, Lambert then sang "Scars," a country ballad about the damage life throws a lover's way. It was one of the evening's most emotional moments, delivered by a singer who's picked up a few battle wounds of her own over the past year.

"I was never damaged enough to sing a song called 'Scars,'" Lambert added, explaining why she'd never performed the song before. "It's something you have to sell and really feel — and go through shit, basically — to execute."

Original enclosures:

Radiohead to Perform New Album at Primavera Fest

Radiohead to Perform New Album at Primavera Fest:

Radiohead will perform their new, as-yet-untitled album during a headlining set at Primavera Sound, set to take place at the Parc del Fòrum in Barcelona, Spain June 1st through 5th.

Little is known about the eagerly awaited follow-up to 2011's King of Limbs and news of its existence was tucked into a sentence in a Primavera press release promising, "The presentation of the new album by the British band Radiohead." The concert also marks the group's first since 2012, and will be followed by a set at the OpenAir St Gallen festival in Switzerland on July 2nd. A release date has yet to be announced.

A representative for the group was not immediately available for comment. It's unclear if the band will perform the album prior to Primavera.

Last January, drummer Phil Selway told Drowned in Sound that the band had been working on new material since September 2014. Guitarist Jonny Greenwood later confirmed to The Guardian that the band had "done a couple months of recording" that "have gone really well," noting that they've changed their method of making a new album again. While no new music has been heard, the group did share their unreleased Bond theme, "Spectre," over Christmas, their first new music in four years.

Beyond the big Radiohead album reveal, the Primavera lineup boasts a slew of heavy hitters including fellow headliners Sigur Rós and the recently reunited LCD Soundsystem. Also slated to perform: PJ Harvey, Tame Impala, Brian Wilson (performing Pet Sounds), Beach House, Beirut, Animal Collective, Pusha T, Action Bronson, Explosions in the Sky, Vince Staples, Dinosaur Jr., Deerhunter, John Carpenter, Suede, the Last Shadow Puppets, Air, Drive Like Jehu, Richard Hawley, Kamasi Washington, Ty Segall, Julia Holter, Chairlift, Neon Indian, Battles, Freddie Gibbs, Savages, Parquet Courts, Destroyer, Thee Oh Sees, Titus Andronicus, Hudson Mohawke, Algiers, Shellac, Evian Christ, and the Black Lips.

A complete lineup is available to peruse on the Primavera Sound website. Tickets for the festival are also on sale.

Original enclosures:

Flashback: The Eagles Play 'Take It Easy' at Hall of Fame Induction

Flashback: The Eagles Play 'Take It Easy' at Hall of Fame Induction:

The Eagles have made no announcement regarding the future of the band following the death of Glenn Frey earlier this week, but it's nearly impossible to imagine them carrying on. "We built something that has lasted longer than anyone could have dreamed," Don Henley wrote in a moving statement about his bandmate. "But Glenn was the one who started it all. He was the spark plug, the man with the plan. He had an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn’t quit. He was funny, bullheaded, mercurial, generous, deeply talented and driven."

Fans had little idea that Frey was facing such serious health issues, at least until the band postponed its Kennedy Center Honors in November due to the singer facing "major surgery and a lengthy recovery period." Just last year, Frey was well enough to play 38 Eagles concerts, wrapping up July 29th, 2015 in Bossier City, Louisiana. If the band never plays again, the History of the Eagles tour was a great way to wrap it up. Founding guitarist Bernie Leadon came back to the band after a long break, and every night the Eagles played two lengthy sets that traced their entire career in chronological order.

Sadly, original bassist Randy Meisner and guitarist Don Felder never got a chance to perform on that tour. Meisner is still dealing with the aftermath of an alleged violent incident in 2014, while Felder became persona non grata in the Eagles camp after a series of messy lawsuits following his departure from the group a decade and a half ago. Fans hoped that at some point all of the past and present Eagles might find a way to come together, but that is now impossible.

The only time all seven Eagles shared a stage was at their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame back in 1998. The multiple-era-spanning lineup – Frey, Henley, Leadon, Meisner, Felder, Joe Walsh and Timothy B. Schmit – played "Take It Easy" (which you can watch right here) and "Hotel California."

Frey was the last one to give his induction speech. "Obviously what's going on tonight is a lot bigger than any of the individuals onstage," he said. "And a lot has been talked about and speculated about over the last 27 years about whether or not we got along. We got along fine. We just disagreed a lot. Tell me one worthwhile relationship that has not had peaks and valleys. You cannot play music with people for very long if you don't genuinely like them. I guarantee you that over the nine years the Eagles were together during the 1970s, and the three years we were together during our reunion, the best of times ranked in the 95th percentile and the worst of times ranked in the very small percentile that obviously everyone but the seven of us have dwelled on for a long, long time. Get over it."

Original enclosures:

Hear Miley Cyrus, Kanye West's 'Black Skinhead' Remix

Hear Miley Cyrus, Kanye West's 'Black Skinhead' Remix:

Kanye West and Miley Cyrus' remix of Yeezus track "Black Skinhead" has finally leaked, over two years after news of the collaboration first surfaced, Vulture reports.

The remix dates back to 2013 and, according to an interview with frequent Cyrus producer Mike Will Made It, was cut immediately after the pop star's notorious, twerk-filled performance at the MTV Video Music Awards.

The long-awaited results are suitably ridiculous, and reportedly feature Travi$ Scott and Lupe Fiasco. Though the production has been switched up, the track retains the overall industrial trap vibe of Yeezus, though Cyrus softens the crushing blows with a sultry rendition of the hook from Tears for Fears' 1985 smash, "Everybody Wants to Rule the World."

Despite West's recent goodwill in the lead-up to his new album, Swish, it's unclear if he was attached to the leak of the "Black Skinhead" remix. West's most recent, official offerings include the Kendrick Lamar-featuring "No More Parties in L.A." and "Good Friends." It's unknown if either song will appear on Swish, which arrives February 11th.

Original enclosures:

Jennifer Nettles Raps, Brandy Clark Debuts Songs in New York

Jennifer Nettles Raps, Brandy Clark Debuts Songs in New York:

Speaking to Billboard last year about the uphill battle faced by women in country music, the songwriter Lori McKenna — who helped pen Little Big Town's Grammy-nominated 2015 smash "Girl Crush" — offered a possible way to raise the profile of talented females in the genre. "Somebody needs to start a country Lilith Fair," she suggested, alluding to the all-women festival founded in the Nineties by Sarah McLachlan. "Think about how great that would be!"

The CMT Next Women of Country tour, which stopped at the Beacon Theatre in New York City last night, offers an all-female line up on a smaller scale. The event brought together a disparate set: up-and-comers Tara Thompson and Lindsay Ell, successful songwriter and solo artist Brandy Clark and Jennifer Nettles, who scored a number of hits as a member of the duo Sugarland but has been working solo since 2013.

Thompson and Ell are both still relatively unknown, and their sets were limited to a handful of songs. Thompson performed with help from a seated guitarist and finished with a rendition of "Someone to Take Your Place," the lively single that she released last month. Ell supplied her own riffs, using loops to build out her tracks — a rarity during a country show. Her latest single "By the Way" shares several characteristics with "Someone to Take Your Place" — crunch, up to date production, and exes-be-damned optimism.

You can find this spirit in Clark's work as well — she excels at writing songs with sharp protagonists driven to the brink by the senseless, irresponsible behavior of their partners: see "Mama's Broken Heart," which she co-wrote for Miranda Lambert, or "Hungover," which appeared on Clark's solo debut 12 Stories. Her other strength is portraits of romance, affecting both for remarkable tenderness ("What'll Keep Me Out of Heaven") or humor ("Illegitimate Children").

Clark is gearing up to release her sophomore album — according to an interview with Rolling Stone last year, the in-demand producer Jay Joyce is involved — and she unveiled several new songs during her set. She acknowledged that it's hard to spring fresh material on an unsuspecting crowd, but the tracks were consistently compelling, showing both sides of her writing: "Girl Next Door" — her new single, out Friday — was slashing and assertive, while "Homecoming Queen" related a heart-rending story about being stuck in a dead-end marriage and the gulf between dreams and reality.

Clark has opened for Nettles on at least two tours, and the pair have developed a writing relationship: Clark helped out with Nettles' latest single "Unlove You," along with another new tune titled "Drunk in Heels." Nettles is an authoritative vocalist with a strong grounding in southern soul; her first post-Sugarland record, That Girl, was ahead of its time. Though the album's singles did not crack the top 25 on the country charts, the climate is different now — between Little Big Town's "Girl Crush" and Chris Stapleton's eruption into popularity, country soul was one of 2015's biggest success stories. Many of the arrangements on That Girl, put together with help from the legendary Rick Rubin, are close to the Muscle Shoals studio trappings of Stapleton's Traveller.

Nettles' fire and brimstone style was on full display at the Beacon Theatre. "Unlove You" rose and fell in massive waves, with a guitarist chopping the rhythm in classic R&B ballad style. "Sugar," another recent single, is swampy funk, and Nettle made the connection explicit by segueing into a classic Stax tune, Linda Lyndell's "What a Man." She then rapped her way through a verse of Salt-N-Pepa's "Shoop." (Nettles has shown a flair for hip hop in the past: revisit the rap-reggae bridge of Sugarland's "Stuck Like Glue" from 2010.)

The southern gospel flavor carried into the final song of the evening: all four singers — along with Sara Bareilles, who dueted with Nettles earlier in the night— joined forces and hollered their way through a slow-roar version of the Beatles' "With a Little Help From My Friends." It was a pointed message: a display of unity and power, and hopefully a sign of more to come.

Original enclosures:

Randy Rogers on Changing Country Music, Texas Loyalty and Bad Queso

Randy Rogers on Changing Country Music, Texas Loyalty and Bad Queso:

Randy Rogers is just not feeling this queso.

Sitting in the subterranean "cellar room" of a Nashville nuevo-southern restaurant, he and Geoffrey Hill, guitarist in the Randy Rogers Band, have barely touched their swirly, puffed-up chips and pot of peach-colored cheese dip, served in a little cast-iron skillet. There are other appetizers too; some sitting on suitably hip planks of wood, but nothing looks particularly ravaged. What they are both clutching tight, however, are familiar bottles of Coors Light, like the way shipwrecked sailors might cling to a buoy.

"I've been away from Texas ten, eleven days now," Rogers tells Rolling Stone Country, seated in all black across from his bandmate, glancing at the comestibles before him with a few copies of their seventh LP, Nothing Shines Like Neon, on the table. "And I miss the food. We all miss Mexican food so bad. Guarantee, tomorrow I'm at my favorite Mexican place eating lunch."

"Mm-hm," says Hill, looking over at the cheese dip with a hint of pity in his eyes. "I mean, that queso's not bad. But…"

Culinary preferences aside, there is no mistaking Randy Rogers Band for anything but a group of Texas road warriors. If the accents don't give it away, the boots might — or the small flag pin in the shape of his home state that Rogers sometimes wears. Making records for well over a decade, they've carved out a unique niche as both a successful touring band and one of the few Red Dirt acts able to straddle the line of Lone Star fidelity with mainstream appeal. They played the Nashville game too, signing with Universal Music Group's Mercury Records and working with ace producers like Paul Worley and Jay Joyce, the latter of whom produced their sixth LP Trouble in 2013.

The title of Trouble, however, was more than just a little prophetic. After years in the comfortable hold of a major label but no sweeping radio hits, they parted ways, leaving the veteran group (also including Johnny "Chops" Richardson on bass, Brady Black on fiddle, Les Lawless on drums and utility player Todd Stewart) to return to the indie grind for the first time since the beginning of their tenure.

"Getting dropped or whatever you want to call it," Rogers says as he adjusts his black Turnpike Troubadours hat, "it was a moment in our career. And at the same time, Jay Joyce — we thought we were going to make another record with him, and he got so busy he couldn't do it. We were lost for a moment. We didn't know what to think or what to do next. There was so much anxiety trying to find our way."

"I used to think we could change country music, change the genre. I was young and cocky"
That anxiety didn't last too long: legendary songwriter and producer Buddy Cannon, who had become a friend of the band, agreed to produce their next LP. "That was a breath of fresh air and a whole lot of 'we're gonna be alright,'" says Rogers. Thirty Tigers, home to Jason Isbell and fellow Texan Aaron Watson, agreed to distribute. This meant the ability to release music with all the freedom they'd always wanted, without having to pass songs or single contenders by a committee of label heads. It also meant scores of new business responsibilities they'd never tackled before, like bank loans and paying publishing royalties, but all small prices to pay for the ability to put the real cornerstone of the Red Dirt spirit — unapologetic authenticity with a special reverence for the past — front and center.

"I love being rebellious," Rogers says. "But I don't know if I've even been really good at it. I used to think we could change country music, change the genre. I was young and cocky and I thought that we got signed and we'd be the biggest shit to ever hit. And when that doesn't happen you live and learn. And you realize there is nothing you can do except be yourself and be an artist, and be true to yourself."

Maybe it was that freshman thrill of being temporarily label-free, or the prospect of working with Cannon, but as the Randy Rogers Band began to write and source songs, they made a decision: this record would tip its toes deeper into their country roots than ever before. Trouble was — including the crunch-rock single "Fuzzy — at times a little over-polished, but Nothing Shines Like Neon (out now) finds the band in a more subdued place, favoring traditional instrumentals over glossy production. Guest artists like Jamey Johnson, Alison Krauss and Jerry Jeff Walker only sweetened the deal.

"It sounds like country, but not our granddad's country," says Rogers. "Even though we were influenced by it, I don't think we could sound that way if we tried. We are not the greatest country pickers in the world."

Their sonic direction made even more sense when a tragedy struck the band: songwriter Kent Finlay, a mentor and longtime friend, passed away the day before they entered the studio. "We recorded [the LP] with him in mind," says Rogers, swallowing hard with a tearful gloss in his eyes. The album's title, Nothing Shines Like Neon, is a tribute too, taken from one of his songs, "Tennessee Whiskey and Texas Swing." This time around, they focused more on paying reverence to the sounds of their youth than anything that might appease the airwaves — an approach he would also take with Wade Bowen on their 2015 duets record, Hold My Beer, Vol. 1.

"We know that this is not going to get a whole bunch of mainstream radio airplay," says Rogers. "We can just say that outright, instead of dreaming that maybe it's going to be different. So what do we do for a living? We make people dance at our shows. People dance to almost every song. They drink beer and fall in love or they dance. Or they fight. A lot of these tunes, we can play them live, which is what we do for a living."

As much as the band is known for those rowdy moments — and with tracks like the Walker duet "Taking It as It Comes" and the excellently introspective "Things I Need to Quit," there are plenty of them — some of the best moments on Nothing Shines Like Neon come on its ballads. "Old Moon New" is a romantic, crooning Nineties-style slow dance sheened with fiddle; "Look Out Yonder," with Krauss and Dan Tyminski, a wistful ode to the wandering spirit; or the Alabama-esque harmonies of "Meet Me Tonight," with its smart, tight lyrics like "kill me slowly like a cigarette."

Thankfully the duet with Johnson (whom Rogers describes as "the guy I gravitated towards at parties") is suitably upbeat and, strangely enough, inspired by an actor from HBO's Entourage.

"We were on the road with Leopold and His Fiction, and were on the west coast," says Rogers. "And they [have] the same management as Adrian Grenier. . . He came out to the show and he had a little entourage with him, literally. I just got to thinking, 'Man, it's probably so tough to be in L.A. and to be struggling actor.' And then I thought how hard it would be to be [Grenier], with people always trailing you. There are lots of things about L.A. I just can't stand. I don't enjoy L.A. in general. Having to live there in order to chase your dream would be very tough."

Let's face it, though: for Rogers, living anywhere other than Texas would probably be tough. But it's a complicated relationship. He's had to shake off a lot of the assumptions and generalization that come with being lumped in with the Red Dirt tradition, often having to work harder to make his own individual mark.

"We get pigeonholed as Texas music," Rogers says, "But if you listen to twenty artists in our genre, we all sound completely different." When Rogers first started to meet with industry executives at the beginning of his career, he'd often be asked why he even wanted to bother to leave Texas — you can make a decent living, after all, just playing to the hometown crowd. "I said, 'You don't get it. You don't get it at all.' It's about getting your music to as many people as you can. It's not about just existing."

Perhaps it's that duality of being a "Texas band" with much broader dreams that led them to avoid ever cutting a song about the Lone Star State, or maybe it just felt like too much pressure. But for the first time, Nothing Shines Like Neon finds the band singing about where they're from: the shuffling mid-tempo "San Antone" opens the record with a line that looks both forward and back. "This highway's sure been good to me," Rogers sings to a locomotive beat. They may still live 30 minutes from San Antonio, but they're happiest hitting the open road. Especially if there's good Mexican food waiting when they return.

"I came from a little small town, and I don't live there anymore," says Rogers. "But I love me some Texas, though."

Original enclosures:

How the Eagles' 'Greatest Hits' Invented a New Kind of Blockbuster

How the Eagles' 'Greatest Hits' Invented a New Kind of Blockbuster:

The old story goes that Glenn Frey, Don Henley and their bandmates were taking forever to finish Hotel California when their record label, Asylum, needed a new Eagles album to raise revenue in the first quarter of 1976. So the label released Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975 as a sort of placeholder – a way of placating fans until the real album could come out. But Irving Azoff, the band's longtime manager, says the truth is far simpler. "We decided it was time to put out the first greatest-hits because we had enough hits," he tells Rolling Stone.

The LP containing "Take It Easy," "Desperado," "Take It to the Limit," "Peaceful Easy Feeling" and six others has sold a massive 29 million copies in the U.S.; back in 1999, it leapfrogged Thriller as the best-selling album of all time. "I think when Michael Jackson sees this on television, he's going to go out and buy a million-and-a-half copies of Thriller," Frey, who died Monday at age 67, quipped at the time. (The Eagles returned to second place after Michael Jackson's 2009 death.)

Although the Eagles considered themselves an albums band, Their Greatest Hits is the pop work that defines their legacy, filling up playlists on multiple radio formats for decades. "After the band broke up in 1980, it just kept selling and selling and selling," Azoff recalls. "There became this kind of classic-rock, album-oriented-rock format, and we got so much radio airplay. And the Henley and Frey solo careers kept it going."

The ubiquitous compilation influenced generations of future country stars. "A lot of younger country musicians did experience the Eagles [through Their Greatest Hits]," says Ken Levitan, a veteran country and rock manager who represents Kings of Leon, Trace Adkins and LoCash. "Every household had a copy of that record. If they didn't hear it themselves, their parents were listening to it, so it became part of a fabric of their life. That record, and Skynyrd and Hank Jr., influenced the whole range of country artists."

While the Eagles had been a successful touring band with some solid hits, Their Greatest Hits quickly sold four times as many copies as their previous four albums combined, according to an industry insider with knowledge of the band. "With the greatest hits, the world, the band, the fans – everything came together," says the source. The compilation's timing was unusual, in February 1976, because it came out just 10 months before the Eagles' landmark Hotel California album (and before guitarist Joe Walsh enlisted).

"It was a helluva year for Elektra/Asylum Records," recalls Joe Smith, the retired record mogul who ran both labels at the time. "I had just moved over there from Warner [the labels' parent company] and got these two albums. How they sold! We underestimated the reach of this group. These guys had a real track record, and it boomed out."

Because of the two albums' timing in 1976, Hotel California songs like "New Kid In Town," "Life In the Fast Lane" and, of course, the classic title song, do not appear on Their Greatest Hits, which forced new Eagles fans to pick up both LPs on record-store runs for decades. By mid-1977, Their Greatest Hits and Hotel California had combined to sell 18 million copies, according to the industry insider. "You probably sell 1,000 other records because somebody came into the store to buy the Eagles' greatest hits, so it's hugely important," says Carl Mello, senior buyer for New England record chain Newbury Comics. "It was never the biggest thing ever, but each year it just sold tons and tons and tons."

"People don't really believe that this kind of rock album of greatest hits was actually up there with Thriller for as long as it was," adds Hilary Rosen, former chairman of the Recording Industry Association of America, who presented a plaque to the band when the album hit Number One. "It was just one of those unbelievably feel-good albums."

The album's cover, a bird skull on a pale background, was of a piece with the birdman theme of "One of These Nights" and "On the Border." Boyd Elder, a Texas artist, had received two skulls from a friend and decided to paint them and cover them with beads. Through his friendship with the band and cover designer Gary Burden, he wound up projecting a color slide of the image for Frey on the wall of "a sleazy hotel by the Dallas airport," recalls Elder, who still lives in West Texas and is still doing experimental art.

Frey loved it, and Elder set the pointy dark-grey skull against a bumpy light-blue background made of silver mylar. Fans debated the cover for years. "There were rumors that when we had the photo shoot, it was pharmaceutical cocaine, and then after we did the album cover, we did all the lines," Elder says with a laugh. "That was a big myth."

When Frey first saw the cover, he noticed the resemblance, telling Elder the background reminded him of "a field of blow." The band, conspicuously, did not debunk the legend.

Original enclosures:

Hear Sean Watkins' Political New Song 'What to Fear'

Hear Sean Watkins' Political New Song 'What to Fear':

When Sean Watkins' new album What to Fear hits stores on March 18th, the election year will already be in full swing.

A lifelong musician who kicked off his career as Nickel Creek's pre-teen guitarist, Watkins knows what to expect from the days leading up to November 8th. It'll be a swirl of stump speeches, TV ads and debates, shot through — unfortunately — with a good bit of fear-mongering from America's 24-hour news outlets.

"Ever since I was a kid, I always thought it was so funny when some news anchor would say something like, 'Are the shoes you're wearing giving you cancer? Stay tuned for the answer right after this!', and then an ad comes on that they get paid for," says the songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, whose recent projects include all-star roots band the Watkins Family Hour. "It's a pretty simple and genius plan. Basically, the more fear they can conjure up, the more money they make."

On the album's title track, Watkins strums his acoustic guitar alongside a makeshift supergroup of drummer Matt Chamberlain, bassist Mike Elizondo and California-based string band the Bee Eaters. The result is an articulate, razor-edged folk song, made up of equal parts melody and message. "There's no one in this dark world you can trust — except for us," goes the final line in the chorus, delivered from the point of a TV anchor who wants not only to report the news, but shape it too. (Listen to the song below.)

"Where we get our information is very important," Watkins tells Rolling Stone Country. "Fear can keep us safe, but it can also cause us to make harsh reactionary decisions that we regret later. This idea is not novel by any means. It's always been around, but right now, I feel like it is particularly relevant."

Original enclosures:

SAMANTHA HOOPES at Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2016 NYC VIP Press Event

SAMANTHA HOOPES at Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2016 NYC VIP Press Event 02/16/2016:

SAMANTHA HOOPES at Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2016 NYC VIP Press Event 02/16/2016

The post SAMANTHA HOOPES at Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2016 NYC VIP Press Event 02/16/2016 appeared first on HawtCelebs.

RACHEL HILBERT at IMG Models Celebrates SI Swimsuit Issue in New York

RACHEL HILBERT at IMG Models Celebrates SI Swimsuit Issue in New York 02/15/2016:

RACHEL HILBERT at IMG Models Celebrates SI Swimsuit Issue in New York 02/15/2016

The post RACHEL HILBERT at IMG Models Celebrates SI Swimsuit Issue in New York 02/15/2016 appeared first on HawtCelebs.

CHARLIZE THERON – 1992 Never Published Guess Shoot by Mark Humphrey

CHARLIZE THERON – 1992 Never Published Guess Shoot by Mark Humphrey:

CHARLIZE THERON - 1992 Never Published Guess Shoot by Mark Humphrey

The post CHARLIZE THERON – 1992 Never Published Guess Shoot by Mark Humphrey appeared first on HawtCelebs.

JUNO TEMPLE in GQ Magazine, March 2016 Issue

JUNO TEMPLE in GQ Magazine, March 2016 Issue:

JUNO TEMPLE in GQ Magazine, March 2016 Issue

The post JUNO TEMPLE in GQ Magazine, March 2016 Issue appeared first on HawtCelebs.

CANDACE CAMERON BURE at Fuller House Premiere in Los Angeles

CANDACE CAMERON BURE at Fuller House Premiere in Los Angeles 02/16/2016:

CANDACE CAMERON BURE at Fuller House Premiere in Los Angeles 02/16/2016

The post CANDACE CAMERON BURE at Fuller House Premiere in Los Angeles 02/16/2016 appeared first on HawtCelebs.