» Keith Started It:Wednesday's (1/23) episode of American Idol revealed the origins of the now infamous viral spat between Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey. You know, the one that positioned Keith Urban helplessly in the middle? As it turns out, the cause for the fight may have been grumpiness due to hunger and Urban's reaction to auditioner Summer Cunningham. After Cunningham sang a country leaning version of "Lean On Me," Urban asked her where she saw herself as an artist. Cunningham replied, "I did the country thing," which clearly struck an Urban nerve. "I always get thrown when people say, 'I did the country thing,'" he said. "That's like saying I did the brain surgeon thing."
A country music debate ensued between Urban, Carey and Randy Jackson to which Minaj became frustrated by Carey's need to label things. They started verbally attacking each other (insert video footage) and Minaj stormed off the set. The production shut down and the rest is TMZ history. It wasn't until the following day when things calmed down and a this-gonna-be-bad auditioner, Ashley Smith, blew everyone away with her rendition of Carrie Underwood's "Cowboy Cassanova" to prove a great song is a great song. And a great voice is a great voice, regardless of genre.
» Summer Assault:Tim McGraw knows what's gonna be cool this summer. Hot tours. McGraw has invited friends from music, television and film to join him for ACM Presents: Tim McGraw's Superstar Summer Night. The two-hour concert will be filmed by dick clark productions and will highlight some of what he believes will be the hottest tours to hit the road this summer. The show takes place April 8 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas for broadcast at a later date on CBS-TV. Proceeds from the event will benefit ACM Lifting Lives.
» Quiet Mother Nun:Carrie Underwood recently discussed her starring role as Maria in the upcoming live broadcast of NBC's The Sound Of Music and since there aren't any other actors attached yet ... maybe NBC will let her mom be involved? "My mom and I would always watch The Sound Of Music together every time it was on TV so it holds really special memories for me," Underwood says. "She wants to be a nun. So she's like, 'I want to be a nun. I don't have to say anything. I can be in there.'" Hopefully the credits will read Carol Underwood as Quiet Mother Nun.
» Hairy Styles:That's what Taylor Swift went through to play the role of long, magical-haired Rapunzel in a new Disney Parks print campaign. The images were created by celebrity photographer Annie Lebowitz as a part of the Disney Dream Portrait series which will also include Olivia Wilde as the Evil Queen, Rachel Weisz as Snow White, Tina Fey as Tinkerbell, Jessica Biel as Pocahontas, Beyonce as Alice in Wonderland and Scarlett Johnasson as Cinderella. The ads will be seen in upcoming issues of People, Vanity Fair and InStyle magazines.
» In Case You Missed It:Randy Housershowed FOX & Friends "How Country Feels" with a performance Tuesday (1/22). Watch here.
LeAnn Rimes ignored doctor's orders not to speak to discuss Real Housewives and allergieson Jimmy Kimmel Live! Tuesday night (1/22). Watch here.
Miranda Lambert stopped by The Talk yesterday (1/22) to announce that she'll perform at the 55th Annual Grammy Awards Feb. 10 on CBS-TV. Watch here.
» Nashville's Own:Brantley Gilbert and Chris Young attended a No. 1 party for Rayna James on ABC-TV's Nashville Wednesday night (1/23) and admitted they were only really there for the open bar -- just like a real No. 1 party. After MidNite's Blair Garner was also mingling with the familiar faces as he played Country Fandom blogger Adam Wergeles looking to get a hot scoop out of Julliette Barnes. Watch the episode here.
» Amazing Angels:Former Stealing Angels band members Jennifer Wayne and Caroline Cutbirth will compete on the upcoming season of the Amazing Race. The show premieres Feb. 17 on CBS-TV. Watch them discuss their strengths and weaknesses here.
Vince Gill, Kenny Rogers, Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers, Patty Loveless, Jo Dee Messina, Ronnie Milsap, Restless Heart and more are scheduled to perform on Holland America’s MS Eurodam for The Country Music Cruise. Daily concerts, comedy shows, activities, dining and stops that include locations in Saint Maarten and the Bahamas are available when the seven day vacation sets sail in early 2014. More here.
Carrie Underwood, along with a joint effort from Locked & Reloaded tour-mates Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert, are the most recent perfromers announced for the 55th Annual Grammy Awards. The show airs Feb. 10 on CBS-TV.
The 48th Annual ACM Awards nominations will be announced Wednesday, Feb. 13. The awards show broadcast is set for April 7 on CBS-TV. Info here.
Tracy Lawrence (1/27)
Friday (1/25): Brett Eldredge, FOX & Friends (FOX News); The Grascals, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (NBC).
Monday (1/28): Lady Antebellum, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno (NBC).
Upcoming Album Releases
The MavericksIn Time (1/26)
Tim McGrawTwo Lanes Of Freedom (2/5)
Ashley MonroeLike A Rose (3/5)
Thompson SquareJust Feels Good (3/26)
The Band PerryTBA (4/2)
Brad PaisleyWheelhouse (4/9)
Willie Nelson Let's Face The Music And Dance (4/16)
Kenny ChesneyTBA (4/30)
» Three Amigas:Miranda Lambert (r) stops by the set of Malibu Country for a quick photo opp in front of the indoor Pacific Ocean with Reba (c) and Laura Bell Bundy.