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Kat 98.7 Rapid City : Country News

Courtesy of Warner Music Nashville
Blake Shelton Returns To The Road With 'Friends And Heroes 2020' Tour

Blake Shelton will kick off the new year with a 16-date beginning in February. The Friends And Heroes 2020 Tour will launch on February 13th in Portland, OR with special guest Lauren Alaina as well as appearances by The Bellamy Brothers, John Anderson and Trace Adkins.

Blake said, "The Friends and Heroes Tour was so exciting and successful last year that I couldn't imagine not trying something like that again. Even though every night when the show wrapped, I would tell the audience that they might never see something like this again, with these legends, my plan all along was to at least try to make that happen. I didn't know if I'd be able to get the same artists, but we were able to work it out where we have the Bellamy Brothers, John Anderson, Trace Adkins and Lauren Alaina all coming back to do the exact same tour. We were only able to do a handful of shows last year, so we're going to take the tour to different areas so that fans will get a chance to see what we did. I feel like it was the best concert experience that I've ever been involved in, and I'm ready to get fired up again."

Tickets in all cities except Los Angeles, Wichita and Detroit will go on sale on October 25th at 10 a.m. local time. The three remaining shows will go on sale at the same time on November 1st. Visit blakeshelton.com for links to buy.

Blake has released a brand new song called "Jesus Got a Tight Grip." It's one of five new ones on Blake's upcoming album, Fully Loaded: God's Country, which will be released on December 13th. The 12-song collection will also feature seven hits from previous albums.

His current single "Hell Right," featuring Trace Adkins, is nearing Top 20 at country radio.

Matthew Berinato
Chris Young'S 'Drowning' Video Has 'So Many Layers'

The video for Chris Young's latest hit, "Drowning," is special for the singer for several reasons, not the least of which is that it features his fans who showed up in droves to be a part of the clip. Chris co-directed the video, which was shot at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, marking the first time Chris played a headlining show in Sin City since the horrific Route 91 Harvest Festival mass shooting two years ago.

He tells us: "There's so many layers, not only to the song but with the process of making that video and getting to be a part of the directing process with that and really make exactly the video I wanted to make for a song that's super personal to me, so filming my first time back in Vegas, being there was special, and the fact that there's no actors in the video and that all those people just wanted to come out and bring photos of their loved ones and be willing to share parts of their lives on camera like that. I mean, it just hit me so hard watching that the very first time going down and I was like, 'This is exactly what I wanted to make.'"

"Drowning" will be included on Chris' upcoming studio album, Raised On Country. No release date has been announced.

Chris performed "Drowning" during last night's CMT Artists of the Year awards at Kane Brown's request. Kane turned up to receive his award and delivered a very tearful speech in which he dedicated the trophy to his late band member Kenny Dixon, who was killed in a single car accident last weekend.

John Shearer
Thomas Rhett Says Success Is A 'God Thing'

Thomas Rhett wrapped up his very successful Very Hot Summer Tour last weekend and he could still take home a few more industry awards before closing out the year. He's up for a People's Choice Award for Country Artist of 2019 as well as two CMA Awards -- Male Vocalist and Album of the Year for Center Point Road -- not to mention last night's (Wednesday, October 16th) award for being one of CMT's 2019 Artists of the Year for the second year in a row.

Despite his crazy success, Thomas remains humble, giving all the credit to God. "It's just weird. I think looking back at my 19-year-old self, that never in a million years thought that I wanted to be an artist, and I wanted to stay in Nashville and just write songs, to where we're at now is all a God thing to me. Every decision that we made and every tour I said yes to, every tour I said no to, every song I did cut, every song I didn't cut, I think it was all part of some crazy plan that … I don't know where it's gonna lead, but I'm really just trying to live in 2019, in the present. And so, those accolades and stuff, that's just mind blowing to me, and I feel very humbled by it and just feel like this is incredible."

The E!'s People's Choice Awards will air on the cable network on November 10th. On November 13th, the CMA Awards will be held in Nashville and air live on NBC.

Robby Klein
FGL's Brian Kelley To Produce Upcoming Musical

Florida Georgia Line's Brian Kelley is taking on the role of producer for a new musical called May We All. Variety reports the show will incorporate hits by many of Brian's fellow country stars including Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Chris Stapleton, Dolly Parton, and, of course, FGL.

May We All is described as "a fledgling country singer protagonist who reluctantly comes home after a rough start in Nashville, ultimately to discover that her roots may take her a lot further than her dreams."

Brian said, "I love building, love creating, love being surrounded by an amazing team, and have found endless inspiration in the fact that I can use my voice in any interest that I have . . . I couldn't be more thrilled to have this musical feature the songs of so many of my buddies and artists who've inspired me. Can't wait to bring this project to the stage and beyond."

May We All is slated for a developmental production at Memphis' Playhouse on the Square in the fall of 2020, with a Nashville world premiere planned for 2021.

Jeff Nelson
Michael Ray Releases Personal Video For 'Her World Or Mine'

Michael Ray has released the video for his latest single, "Her World or Mine," and it's extremely personal to him. He said, "I wanted to tell the story of my parents' divorce and that part of my life – the confusion and the fact that it wasn't easy for a while. And losing my grandparents was a massive hit, not only to me, but my whole family . . . When my parents were going through their divorce is when my grandfather started teaching me guitar chords – it was my outlet. It was my way to get away from all the hell and chaos that was going on."

The new video features actor Chad Michael Murray in the role of Michael's father. The two met at the CMT Awards four years ago and have been friends ever since.


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