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Tag: Lauren Alaina (1-10 of 10)

Lauren Alaina debuts emotional (and biographical) ballad 'Same Day, Different Bottle' -- VIDEO

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At CMT’s Next Women of Country event at the Farm House restaurant in Downtown Nashville on Monday, American Idol Season 10 runner-up Lauren Alaina held a room full of fellow female starlets — including Kacey Musgraves, Cassadee Pope, Danielle Braberry, Holly Williams, Ashley Monroe, and Jana Kramer — and industry executives rapt with an intensely intimate new ballad.

On the unreleased track, “Same Day, Different Bottle,”  which Alaina co-wrote with Caitlyn Smith and Dan Couch, she delivers a heartbreaking plea for a man to quit drinking. “Same day, different bottle/Every day I pray you’ll pour it down the drain,” she cried out in a tone that sounds strikingly more mature than it ever did on her post-Idol debut WIldflower, which bowed at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 in 2011. The room was visibly taken aback by Alaina’s newfound conviction and the song’s tender, gorgeous melody.

“I went through a weird gray area where I was just kind of singing songs to sing them,” Alaina told EW the following day on the BMI Country Music Awards red carpet. “Now I sing songs because I’m passionate about them, and they mean something to me.” The Georgia native, 19, is in the process of writing and recording her sophomore album as she makes the full-time move to Nashville. “I’ve been dealing with a lot of stuff, as you heard in the song, so that’s kind of postponed my move,” she confessed. (Alaina admitted to Yahoo!‘s Chris Willman that the track is about her father’s struggle with alcoholism.)

Give the new song a listen below: READ FULL STORY

CMT Music Award Nominations: Little Big Town must win for 'Fix You' cover -- VIDEO

Nominations for June 6’s CMT Music Awards were announced this morning, with Carrie Underwood leading the pack with five nods, followed by Miranda Lambert, who received four.

See the full list below, which also includes three nominations a piece for Blake Shelton, Jason Aldean, Lady Antebellum, Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts, and Thompson Square.

If there’s one category we feel strongly about, it’s CMT Performance of the Year, which honors the best live performance that aired on a CMT show, series, or special. Little Big Town has to win for their cover of Coldplay’s “Fix You” on the Music Builds: CMT Disaster Relief Concert. It starts at 2:40 in the clip below; you’re guaranteed to get chills. READ FULL STORY

White House celebrates country music with PBS special -- featuring the Band Perry, Dierks Bentley, James Taylor and more

In Performance at the White House, a concert series created by Michelle Obama, turns its ear to country music in a new PBS special premiering Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET (check local listings).

Artists gathered in the East Room of the White House Monday to tape the intimate show, with the President and First Lady sitting in the front row. According to USA Today, the president explained that traveling the country, he’s gained an appreciation for how much country music and its storytelling mean to so many Americans (and also told the audience “Hootie’s in the house!” referring to Darius Rucker, who was among the performers).

Dierks Bentley opened the evening with his inspirational hit “Home,” a song he was inspired to write after Gabrielle Giffords’ shooting in his native Arizona. Bentley also performed “Always on My Mind” with American Idol runner-up Lauren Alaina and “Me and Bobby McGee” with Kris Kristofferson and the rest of the cast, which included Allison Krauss, James Taylor, The Band Perry, and Lyle Lovett.

Find the full setlist below:

READ FULL STORY

Adele returns to the top of the Billboard 200, passes 4 million sales total; Casting Crowns scores top debut

After 35 weeks on the chart, Adele’s smash album 21, which has yet to leave the Top 5, rose back into the number one spot on the Billboard 200 this week, selling an additional 106,000 copies.

That number pushed 21‘s total to a whopping 4.1 million copies, by far the biggest selling album of 2011. All told, the “Someone Like You” singer has spent 13 non-consecutive weeks atop the chart this year. Now, if she could just fix those dang vocal cords!

Christian band Casting Crowns finished close behind in second place with first-week sales of their album Come to the Well at 99,000 copies. The band’s last album, 2009’s Until the Whole World Hears, got off to a stronger start with 167,000 copies sold, but to be fair, that disc still holds the record for the highest Christian-album debut in history. Come to the Well‘s 99,000 debut is nothing to cast a stone (or crown, for that matter) at.

In third place, Scotty McCreery continues to impress as his album Clear As Day dipped just 36 percent to 57,000. That gives the country balladeer three-week sales of 342,000. His runner-up, Lauren Alaina fell down to tenth place, dropping 63 percent in her second week to 26,000. Her record, Wildflower, has now sold 95,000 copies, which isn’t incredible, but it’s not half bad considering Alaina’s lead single, “Like My Mother Does,” only peaked at number 36 on the country chart. (Not all American Idol alums are as fortunate as these two…)

Last week’s chart-topper Evanescence falls back into fourth, as their self-titled third album fell 69 percent to 40,000. It has sold 167,000 after two weeks. Meanwhile ,Tony Bennett’s Duets II rises one spot into fifth place with another 39,000 copies sold. The 85 year-old crooner’s set has moved 434,000 copies in five weeks, and sales should remain strong through the holidays.

R&B singer Joe fared alright in his debut: His latest album, The Good, the Bad, and the Sexy sold 33,000 copies, good enough for eighth place. His 2009 set Alright started at number 7 with 49,000. Check out the top ten below: READ FULL STORY

Crystal Bowersox, Lee DeWyze both dropped by their record label: For 'Idol', what a difference a year makes

American Idol Season 9 runner-up Crystal Bowersox has split with label RCA/Jive, a rep for the singer confirmed yesterday to TVLine.

Bowersox, whose debut album Farmer’s Daughter sold 210,000 copies (compared to Idol winner Lee Dewyze’s Live It Up, which moved just 168,000 copies.), said, “For not having any radio play and any great promotion, I think I’ve done pretty well on sales … I’m able to provide a good, comfortable life for my family, and that’s what I wanted out of it.” She says that she expects that her second album will be released independently.

Reports of Bowersox’s split arrive just two weeks after news that Lee DeWyze had been dropped by RCA as well. Apparently, Season 9 of American Idol, which many viewers felt was lackluster edition, just didn’t produce a bankable star. (Although, technically, the jury’s out on third-place finisher Casey James, who just released his debut country single “Let’s Don’t Call It A Night.” He seems to be Season 9’s last hope.)

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Image Credit: Frank Micelotta/Fox/Picture Group

Meanwhile, Season 10’s top two finishers, Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina, both of whom are managed by Interscope and signed to Mercury Nashville, are both kicking off their careers with decidedly healthier results.

In its first two weeks on the chart, Scotty McCreery’s Clear As Day has sold a strong 285,000 copies, while Lauren Alaina’s Wildflower managed to sell 69,000 copies (the best female country debut since 2006) in its debut last week. HITS Daily Double predicts that those titles will sell an additional 65,000 and 30,000, respectively, this week. Not too shabby for a couple of teens!

Perhaps the better numbers are a result of country audiences more willingly buying whole albums than pop listeners, or perhaps Scotty and Lauren benefited from October release dates, rather than the more competitive mid-November (Lee) and December (Crystal) dates of their predecessors. Or maybe audiences just like them more—after all, Scotty and Lauren fit into the smiley, bright-eyed, big-dreaming mold of American Idol better than the more subdued Bowersox and DeWyze.

Whatever the reason, McCreery and Alaina (and hopefully Haley Reinhart one day soon!) are re-establishing American Idol as a brand that can produce stars—so long as they aren’t named Pia Toscano, of course. She just never really happened, did she?

What do you think? Will Bowersox and DeWyze find success on the indie circuit? Will McCreery and Alaina experience career longevity? Sound off about all your favorite Idol-ites in the comments below!

Read more on EW.com:
Lauren Alaina debuts in fifth place on the Billboard 200
‘American Idol’ roundup: Four new music videos from non-winners: What do you think?
Scotty McCreery sings the national anthem at the World Series

Follow Grady on Twitter: @EWGradySmith

Evanescence tops the Billboard 200 after five-year hiatus; Lauren Alaina debuts in fifth place

Evanescence

Despite a five-year break from the music scene and some major personnel changes, goth rockers Evanescence returned to the top of the Billboard 200 chart today with their self-titled third album, which sold 127,000 copies in its first week.

Though that number is far less than Evanescence’s last album, The Open Door, which debuted at No. 1 in 2006 with 447,000 copies sold, it is impressive that the Amy Lee-led band managed to move that many discs without a smash single like “My Immortal” or “Bring Me To Life.” Their current single, “What You Want” sits at number 13 on the Rock Songs chart.

Another rock band enjoyed a strong debut this week: L.A.’s Five Finger Death Punch started off at No. 3 (behind the indomitable Adele, whose 21 is STILL holding strong at No. 2) with 91,000 copies of their album, American Capitalist, sold. That’s a big jump from their 2009 record, War Is the Answer, which debuted at No. 7 with 44,000.

Last week’s chart champ, Scotty McCreery’s Clear As Day, slipped down into fourth place after a 55 percent drop to 88,000, giving him a two-week total of 285,000. Meanwhile, his runner-up, Lauren Alaina, got off to a pretty good start herself with 69,000 copies of her disc Wildflower sold in its debut week.

Ryan Adams’ Ashes and Fire and Martina McBride’s Eleven debuted with 49,000 and 40,000, respectively. Joe Jonas wasn’t as lucky. Without his brothers beside him, the “Just In Love” singer started at No. 15 with only 18,000 copies. Check out the top ten below: READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' roundup: Four new music videos from non-winners: What do you think?

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It’s always fun to follow the careers of American Idol contestants who don’t win the show.

Most of them fade into relative obscurity once the American Idols LIVE! tour wraps, but some score record deals and go on to have fruitful careers in the music biz.

Season 9 contestant Casey James came in third place on the show, but he was quickly signed to Sony Music Nashville, and with his just-released music video for extra smooth country single “Let’s Don’t Call it a Night,” he’s making his best effort to stay relevant post-Idol. (The single currently sits at number 43 on the country chart.)

Check out James’ video below, along with new-ish new music videos from Siobhan Magnus, Josh Gracin, and Brooke White’s duo Jack and White. Which ones sound/look best to you? READ FULL STORY

'CMA Music Festival' did actually rock, plus Scotty McCreery and Lauren Alaina remain adorable

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ABC touted its three-hour CMA Music Festival concert as “Country’s Night to Rock,” and because this special had better sound than other televised music award shows do combined, it actually did. Most everyone was there, from Reba McEntire, who sang “Turn On the Radio”; to Taylor Swift, who worked a sparkly gold fringed dress for “Sparks Fly”; to Jason Aldean, who brought Kelly Clarkson onstage for their duet “Don’t You Wanna Stay.” My favorite crowd reaction shot of the night was the guy rapping along with Aldean during “Dirt Road Anthem.” My favorite artist interview was Lady Antebellum, who revealed they sign a lot of “stinky cowboy boots” and that Dave Haywood sleeps in black crew socks. (“This interview is really awful for my rep, by the way,” he joked.)

It was admittedly tough to watch Sugarland’s performance in light of their stage collapse in Indiana over the weekend. ABC made sure viewers knew the performances of “Find the Beat Again” and “Stuck Like Glue” were recorded on June 10, 2011, but being reminded of how much joy that duo and their fans are capable of made your heart ache because you know they’re feeling the complete opposite now. READ FULL STORY

'American Idol' winners Scotty McCreery, Lauren Alaina make big Hot 100 debuts

Last week, America declared Scotty McCreery the best singer of the show’s tenth season giving him the Idol title and leaving Lauren Alaina with the second-place consolation prize. So do the charts agree with the show’s voters?

McCreery debut single “I Love You This Big” immediately shot to the top 5 of the iTunes music chart (it remains in the top 10), and bowed at no. 11 on this week’s Billboard Hot 100.

Alaina’s single “Like My Mother Does” also did well, if slightly less so, coming in nine spots lower at no. 20 on the Hot 100. Both Alaina and McCreery bested season nine winner Lee DeWyze, whose first single (a cover of U2’s “Beautiful Day”) slipped onto the chart at number 24.

In fact, McCreery’s debut is the highest for an Idol alum since Kris Allen crashed the Hot 100 with “No Boundaries,” though the all-time highest debut for an Idol single is still a tie between Carrie Underwood’s “Inside Your Heaven,” Fantasia’s “I Believe,” Clay Aiken’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and Kelly Clarkson’s “A Moment Like This,” all of which debuted at no. 1.

READ FULL STORY

Lauren Alaina's 'Like My Mother Does': The EW single review

It’s telling that American Idol runner-up Lauren Alaina’s first single was originally recorded by fellow countrified Idol contestant Kristy Lee Cook, since her performance of the song on Tuesday night (which included a guest appearance from Alaina’s actual mother, who had become something of a supporting star in her own right) was about as pandering as Kristy’s take on “God Bless the USA” back in the show’s seventh season. (Though apparently the stars and stripes are more bulletproof than mothers—Kristy was safe that week and Lauren lost out in the end.)

The silliness of the performance distracted from the song itself, which might have been a blessing. Even as far as inspirational country ballads go, “Like My Mother Does” is pretty paint-by-numbers, with all the nods to classic country (those fiddles, that banjo) tucked neatly behind walls of over-produced guitar so as not to upset the crossover potential.

Alaina’s voice is perfectly functional and pleasant, and she is able to carry the melody quite well, though that little bit of rasp that snuck into her performance on the show this week is deeply missed in the recorded version (country usually sounds better when soaked in whiskey and cigarettes, though Alaina isn’t old enough to buy either).

Alaina certainly has the potential to craft a lovely collection of modern country tunes, but “Like My Mother Does” doesn’t do her any favors, nor does it clearly play to her strengths the way rival Scotty McCreery’s “I Love You This Big” does. Really, “Like My Mother Does” is a lot like Alaina herself: Sweet but bland, pretty but forgettable. C+

Read more from EW.com:
Lauren Alaina backstage Q&A after the ‘American Idol’ finale: ‘I’m so ecstatic to have just even made it this far.’
‘American Idol’ season finale recap: Baby Lock Them Doors Because The Winner Needs Security
‘American Idol': Scotty and Lauren duke it out in the Nokia, on the scene for the performance finale

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