THIS WEEKEND IN COUNTRY MUSIC HISTORY
Burl Ives born (1909) in Newton, Ill.
Linda Ronstadt's "When Will I Be Loved" goes to No. 1 (1975)
Patsy Cline injured in automobile accident (1961)
Marty Robbins awarded the Metronome Award by the city of Nashville (1985)
Waylon Jennings born (1937) in Littlefield, Texas
"Hee Haw" debuted on the CBS television network (1969)
Billy "Crash" Craddock born in Greensboro, N.C. (1939)
Eddy Raven's "I Got Mexico" goes to No 1 (1984)
Bob Nolan, founding member of the Sons of the Pioneers, died (1980) age 72
OF MUSIC AND MORE
KEITH MAY BE OFF JULY 4 ABC SPECIAL
Toby Keith says the words to his "Angry American" single -- full title "Courtesy of the Red White and Blue" -- seems to be a bit hotter than expected for ABC news anchor Peter Jennings. According to reports on CNN and in USA Today, Keith says he was invited to open ABC's 4th of July special May 16. "They said: 'We've gotta have you on the show. We want you opening it. This song's great, it's hot, America loves this song,'" Keith said.
But the singer said he was later told Jennings, the host of the special, had said the song had lyrics that didn't belong on the show.
Keith has performed the song twice on television, once on the Academy of Country Music Awards show aired by CBS May 22, and again on the Flameworthy Video Music Awards on CMT this week.
Keith also has played the song at the Naval Academy, at the Pentagon and on a USO tour of Kosovo and Bosnia. Keith said: "The response was so tremendous, I said, 'Hey, we're allowed to be angry.' ... I'm a musician-songwriter, so this is my way of trying to express my feelings."
Among the most confrontational lyrics: "This big dog will fight/When you rattle his cage/And you'll be sorry that you messed with/The U.S. of A./'Cause we'll put a boot in your ass/It's the American way."
Keith says he wrote the song about his father, Hubert "H.K." Covel, who served in the Army. Covel died March 24, 2001, in a car crash. "He taught me to be a flag-waving patriot long before it was cool to wave a flag like it is now," Keith said.
The song is at No. 12 on Billboard's Hot Country Singles and Tracks chart after only five weeks, the fastest-rising single of Keith's career.
USA Today says an ABC spokeswoman said the show was still in its planning stages and no final invitations have been issued.
BLUEBIRD LEGACY CHRONICLED IN NEW BOOK
Nashville's famous songwriter showcase, The Bluebird Café, celebrates its 20th anniversary with publication by Harper Entertainment of The Bluebird Café Scrapbook. It's a book-length collection of recipes and songwriters' reminiscences. Garth Brooks, Vince Gill, Trisha Yearwood and Faith Hill are among the many writer-artists who share stories. Gill's wife, Amy Grant, has a recipe for cheese grits, and Hill shares the formula for Coca-Cola cake. Official date of publication is next Tuesday.
MCBRIDE HOPES FOR NEW CD IN SPRING
Even though Martina McBride's "Greatest Hits" is still in the Billboard Top 10, the country music star is warming up her studio for some more production. McBride said, "We're going in the 26th and 27th of this month to start cutting the new album," and then hit the road touring for 7 1/2 weeks. "We won't be able to do anything on it, which is going to be so frustrating. But we get back at the end of August ... and we'll work on it this fall. It'll probably come out in the spring."
SINGING THOSE SWEET BABY BLUES
The country music family is about to grow by at last two. This week, while appearing at the Flameworthy Video Music Awards show, Sara Evans said she and hubby Craig Schelske are expecting a baby in January. They have a son, Avery, who will be 3 in August. Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry, and his wife, Angie, also are expecting a child, in December. Troy has one daughter, Taylor, from a previous marriage.