» Tim & Faith Double Down: If you put money on Tim McGraw and Faith Hill opening their new Vegas show with "Let's Go To Vegas," you're a chicken dinner winner! The country mega-couple's Soul2Soul 10-weekend engagement bowed at the Venetian Saturday (12/8), and it didn't disappoint. "Right from the surprise entrance where Tim & Faith came in from opposite side doors and started shaking hands, I could feel the energy and anticipation from the crowd," one attendee tells us. The 1,800 seat theater had fans raving about the show's intimate feel.
And speaking of intimate, the show had some steamy moments. "Seeing the way Tim held Faith's arm tight when they sang 'It's Your Love,' especially when he sang the line about sending a shock right through me, you knew he meant every word," our insider says. "That line and action literally gave me chills!" Highlights included a Q&A session with the crowd, a handful of interesting covers (Tim sang the Eagles' "I Can't Tell You Why") and an exit through the crowd that echoed their entrance. One fan sums, "The great thing about those two is that you can really tell that they love each other, and it certainly came across onstage."
» Baby Antebellum: Congratulations to Lady Antebellum's Hillary Scott and husband Chris Tyrell. The couple started 2012 with a January wedding and revealed Friday (12/7) that they're expecting their first child. Scott posted via Facebook, "Chris & I are excited to announce that our Christmas gift has arrived a little early this year! We are having a BABY! We feel so blessed!!! - Hillary"
» CMTeased: Miranda Lambert said Jason Aldean's music is, "The kinda stuff that I can crank up in my truck and open the doors and windows and [it] makes you wanna drink a cold beer. That's what country music is all about." Carrie Underwood, Lambert, Luke Bryan, Aldean, Toby Keith, Eric Church and Kenny Chesney spent time talking about one another as they were honored as CMT Artists Of The Year during Saturday's telecast (12/8) hosted by Rascal Flatts and Hayden Panettiere. Highlights included performances from the honorees and Underwood's award presentation from Nashville Predator/husband Mike Fisher. Watch here.
» Westward Leading: Imagine watching a teeny tiny character on your smartphone dressed in Charles Kelley-style skinny jeans and a scarf, panning for gold. Oh, it's real now that Lady Antebellum partnered with digital and social game publisher Gameloft to provide content for The Oregon Trail: American Settler. The likeness of Lady A band members Hillary Scott, Kelley and Dave Haywood will serve as in-game quest givers, allowing players to watch music videos from On This Winter’s Night along with an exclusive welcome message. Info here.
» Sugar Baby: Congrats to Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles and husband Justin Miller on the birth of Magnus Hamilton Miller Dec. 6. "We are so thankful for all the prayers and support and are excited to take some time together as a new family," Nettles says.
Taylor Swift's 23rd music video, "I Knew You Were Trouble," will premiere on MTV Thursday (12/13), which also happens to be her 23rd birthday.
Lady Antebellum and Brad Paisley will perform during the 29th Annual Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade Dec. 25 on ABC-TV.
The video for Martina McBride’s “Please Be Home for Christmas” debuted last week as CMT, VH1 and VH1 Classic help her label get the word out about the A Very Special Christmas 25th Anniversary album, which benefits Special Olympics.
Brenda Lee (12/11)
Hank Williams III (12/12)
Taylor Swift (12/13)
John Anderson (12/13)
Randy Owen (12/13)
Tuesday (12/11): Blake Shelton, The Voice (NBC).
Wednesday (12/12): Florida Georgia Line, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon (NBC)
This Week's Album Releases
Various ArtistsNashville (12/11)
Produced by T Bone Burnett, the 11-track album includes songs from the show performed by cast members Connie Britton, Hayden Panettiere, Sam Palladio, Claire Bowen, Charles Esten, Jonathan Jackson and the two girls that play Britton's daughters, real life sisters Lennon and Maisy Stella with their acoustic, talent show version of Panettiere's "Telescope."
» Kids Incorporated:Keith Urban rehearses for his performance at the American Country Awards with musicians from the Grammy Camp music program. The show brings a $25,000 donation made to support the Grammy Foundation’s Grammy Camp and Grammy in the Schools programs, which encourage the musical pursuits of young people.
» Lady Big Twain: The Lady A boys and Little Big Town hit Vegas Sunday night (12/9) to take in Shania: Still The One and grab a backstage photo opp with the star. Pictured are (l-r) Karen Fairchild, Charles Kelley, Jimi Westbrook, Shania Twain, Phillip Sweet, Kimberly Schlapman and Dave Haywood.