Don Williams was known as the gentle giant of country music.
Other hits included You’re My Best Friend, I Believe in You and Lord, I Hope This Day Is Good.
In 2010, Don Williams was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
A second country singer, Troy Gentry of the popular country duo Montgomery Gentry, has also died at the age of 50. He was killed in a helicopter crash.
A statement of the band’s website said: “It is with great sadness that we confirm that Troy Gentry, half of the popular country duo, Montgomery Gentry, was tragically killed in a helicopter crash which took place at approximately 1:00pm today in Medford, New Jersey.”
The band said details of the crash were not immediately known.
Troy Gentry was due to perform in Medford on September 8.
Merle Haggard has died of pneumonia on his 79th birthday, his manager confirmed.
The singer is credited with helping to define the “Bakersfield sound”, country music with a distinctive twang and lack of sophisticated production.
Merle Haggard wrote songs, sang and played fiddle and guitar, usually singing about American pride and outlaws.
The country music legend was a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame with dozens of albums and top hits.
Photo Getty Images
Merle Haggard, who battled lung cancer in 2008, had recently cancelled April tour dates due to illness and said he hoped to be back on the road in May.
Rolling Stone magazine has described him as “the backbone of one of the greatest repertoires an all of American music, plain-spoken songs populated by the kinds of working people Merle Haggard grew up with: farmers, hobos, convicts, widows, musicians and drunks”.
Merle Haggard’s top hits include Mama Tried, The Fugitive, If We Make It Through December and Okie From Muskogee.
He was born in California in 1937, living in a converted boxcar with his family and quitting school at a young age to hop freight trains across the south western part of the US.
Merle Haggard spent three years in prison for breaking into a cafe while drunk, Rolling Stone notes. Then-governor of California, Ronald Reagan, expunged his criminal record in 1972.
Musicians gave their tributes to Merle Haggard on Twitter shortly following the news of his death.
Lynn Anderson has died in hospital in Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 67.
She was best known for her worldwide 1971 hit (I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden.
The country singer had been in hospital after suffering a heart attack on July 30.
The Grammy-winning singer had just returned from Italy and was admitted to the hospital for pneumonia.
Born in North Dakota and raised in Sacramento, California, Lynn Anderson was the daughter of two country songwriters and started performing at the age of six.
In 1967, Lynn Anderson began a two-year television engagement on The Lawrence Welk Show, which led to a contract with Columbia Records in Nashville, the capital of country music.
She won a Grammy award for Rose Garden and was the Country Music Association’s female vocalist of the year in 1971.
“It was popular because it touched on emotions,” she told AP.
“It was perfectly timed. It was out just as we came out of the Vietnam years and a lot of people were trying to recover. This song stated that you can make something out of nothing. You take it and go ahead.”
Alongside her singing career, Lynn Anderson made a number of TV appearances with stars including Lucille Ball, Bing Crosby and John Wayne.
Lynn Anderson also appeared in episodes of the cop show Starsky and Hutch.
Shania Twain has announced her final tour with 48 dates across the US and Canada.
The Canadian singer will kick off her final tour in June.
Shania Twain, whose 1997 album Come On Over remains the best-selling country album ever, said on ABC’s Good Morning America: “This is my last tour, so I’m going to make the most of it.
“I want to go out with a bang.”
The Rock This Country tour will be Shania Twain’s first tour in more than 10 years, and follows a two-year residency at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
“I feel that Las Vegas, the show, was a huge mountain to climb for me,” Shania Twain – who turns 50 later this year – said.
“I not only got through it, but I enjoyed it.”
Shania Twain became a massive star in the mid-1990s, with hits such as Man! I Feel Like A Woman and That Don’t Impress Me Much.
She sold more than 75 million albums worldwide and became the best-selling female artist in the history of country music, but largely disappeared from the limelight between 2004 and 2009, citing personal issues and creative inertia.
Shania Twain returned to live performing in 2011.
The new tour will begin in Seattle, before heading north to Canada, then returning to the US for dates across the country – including New York, Washington and Miami.
The “custom-made” tour will conclude in Fresno, California, days ahead of the singer’s birthday in August.
Shania Twain also announced that she is currently “working on new music” to be released after the tour.
06/05 Seattle, WA Key Arena
06/07 Vancouver, BC Rogers Arena
06/09 Vancouver, BC Rogers Arena
06/11 Edmonton, AB Rexall Place
06/12 Edmonton, AB Rexall Place
06/14 Saskatoon, SK SaksTel Centre
06/15 Winnipeg, MB MTS Centre
06/19 London, ON Budweiser Gardens
06/20 London, ON Budweiser Gardens
06/22 Hamilton, ON FirstOntario Centre
06/24 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
06/25 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
06/27 Ottawa, ON Wesley Clover Field
06/28 Montreal, QC Bell Centre
06/30 New York, NY Madison Sqaure Garden
07/01 Uniondale, NY Nassau Coliseum
07/03 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun
07/07 Newark, NJ Prudential Center
07/08 Boston, MA TD Garden
07/10 Pittsburgh, PA Consol Energy Center
07/11 Grand Rapids, MI Van Andel Arena
07/13 Indianapolis, IN Bankers Life Fieldhouse
07/15 Jacksonville, FL Jacksonville Veterans Memorial
07/16 Miami, FL American Airlines Arena
07/18 Greenville, SC Bon Secours Wellness Arena
07/19 Charlotte, NC Time Warner Cable Arena
07/21 Washington, DC Verizon Center
07/22 Philadelphia, PA Wells Fargo Center
07/25 Auburn Hills, MI Palace of Auburn Hills
07/26 Moline, IL iWireless Center
07/28 Minneapolis, MN Target Center
07/29 Rosemont, IL Allstate Arena
07/31 Nashville, TN Bridgestone Arena
08/01 Atlanta, GA Philips Arena
08/03 Louisville, KY KFC Yum! Center
08/04 Saint Louis, MO Scottrade Center
08/06 Des Moines, IA Wells Fargo Arena
08/07 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center
08/09 Austin, TX Frank Erwin Center
08/10 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center
08/12 Oklahoma City, OK Chesapeake Energy Arena
08/14 Denver, CO Pepsi Center
08/15 Salt Lake City, UT Energy Solutions Arena
08/17 San Jose, CA SAP Center
08/19 Anaheim, CA The Honda Center
08/20 Los Angeles, CA Staples Center
08/22 San Diego, CA Valley View Casino Center
08/23 Fresno, CA SaveMart Center
Legendary country singer George Hamilton IV has died at a hospital in Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 77.
George Hamilton IV passed away on September 17, just days after suffering a heart attack.
A statement posted on the singer’s official website reads: “Grand Ole Opry Legend George Hamilton IV The International Ambassador of Country Music passed away … at Saint Thomas Midtown Hospital with his family by his side. George IV suffered a serious heart attack on Saturday and had been in critical condition from that time. The Hamilton family greatly appreciates everyone’s prayers!”
George Hamilton IV began his music career while studying at the University of North Carolina, scoring a chart success with his song A Rose and A Baby Ruth in 1956. He went on to land a slew of hits and was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in 1960.
George Hamilton IV was named the International Ambassador of Country Music after becoming the first country singer to perform in the Soviet Union
He embraced folk music in the late 1960s, working with stars including Joni Mitchell, and in the early 1970s, he was named the International Ambassador of Country Music after becoming the first country singer to perform in the Soviet Union.
In the 1970s, George Hamilton IV also hosted a number of TV shows in the UK and Canada.
George Hamilton IV last performed at the Grand Ole Opry on September 6, just days before his death.
Rhonda Adkins, Trace Adkins’ third wife, has filed for divorce after 16 years of marriage.
Rhonda Adkins has cited “irreconcilable differences” as the reason for the split in documents filed in Tennessee.
Trace and Rhonda Adkins wed in 1997 and have three daughters, aged from 9 to 16.
Rhonda Adkins, Trace Adkins’ third wife, has filed for divorce after 16 years of marriage
According to the divorce papers, obtained by TMZ, the country singer and his wife separated on Monday.
Rhonda Adkins is requesting primary residential custody of their three kids, child support and alimony.
The divorce news is the latest blow for Trace Adkins, who lost his father, Aaron, last month, just after he completed a rehab stint for alcoholism, days after becoming embroiled in an altercation with an impersonator onboard a country music fan cruise.
Trace Adkins, 52, had been sober for more than a decade before his relapse.
Duck Dynasty ’s Christmas album debuted as No 1 in Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart this week.
Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas debuted this week in the Billboard chart knocking Luke Bryan’s album from first to fourth.
The album took over the top spot ahead of Thomas Rhett’s It Goes Like This and Toby Keith’s Drinks After Work, which are also in their first week on the chart.
Duck Dynasty ’s Christmas album debuted as No 1 in Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart this week
Duck the Halls is also ranked second on the publication’s list of Top Holiday Albums behind Kelly Clarkson’s Wrapped in Red.
Duck Dynasty’s album is currently listed as fourth on the Billboard 200, which ranks top-selling albums for the week across all genres. The Christmas record is situated behind new albums from Arcade Fire, Katy Perry and Clarkson.
The Robertsons are joined on their album by country music stars like Luke Bryan, Alison Krauss, Josh Turner and George Strait, who won the Country Music Association award for Entertainer of the Year on Wednesday.
Duck the Halls features a blend of original songs, such as Ragin’ Cajun Redneck Christmas, and more traditional Christmas tunes, including Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and I’ll Be Home for Christmas.
“I started signing up last Thursday and I’m almost done!” The Blown Away singer proceeded to help her co-host sign up for ObamaCare and “join the six other people” who have reportedly signed up successfully for the healthcare service.
The routine had the Nashville audience clapping their hands to the tune of newly crowned entertainer of the year George Strait’s Amarillo by Morning, but with the words changed to: “ObamaCare by morning/ Why’s this taking so long?/ I’m going to end up with hemorrhoids/If I sit here ’til dawn.”
Viewers watching the 47th Annual Country Music Association Awards – held Wednesday night in Nashville – were surprised with Duck Dynasty stars appearance.
Willie and Jase Robertson were joined by their wives Korie and Missy to perform a redneckified version of Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines.
While the Robertson clan twerked on stage, CMA Awards hosts, Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley, switched up the words of Robin Thicke’s song.
Viewers watching the 47th Annual Country Music Association Awards were surprised with Duck Dynasty stars appearance
“I’m going to grow a beard and go out hunting… <<Duck Dynasty>> guys dance to Robin Thicke/We tried to get nasty talking <<Duck Dynasty>.”
The Robertsons weren’t just onstage to show off their lack of dancing skills; they also gave out the first award of the night to duo Florida Georgia Line for single of the year for their hit song Cruise.
Entertainer Of The Year
George Strait Male Vocalist Of The Year
Blake Shelton Female Vocalist Of The Year
Miranda Lambert Vocal Group Of The Year
Little Big Town Vocal Duo Of The Year
Florida Georgia Line New Artist Of The Year
Country Music Association Awards 2013
Kacey Musgraves Album Of The Year
Blake Shelton, Based On A True Story
Single Of The Year
Florida Georgia Line, Cruise Song Of The Year I Drive Your Truck – Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington, and Jimmy Yeary Musical Event Of The Year
Tim McGraw With Taylor Swift & Keith Urban, Highway Don’t Care Music Video Of The Year
Tim McGraw, Highway Don’t Care Musician Of The Year
Mac McAnally Pinnacle Award
Kenny Rogers, Bobby Bare and the late Jack Clement joined the Country Music Hall of Fame at its museum in Nashville.
Bobby Bare, Kenny Rogers and Jack Clement were honored for their influence on modern Country music at the ceremony attended by Garth Brooks, Kris Kristofferson and Barry Gibb.
Kenny Rogers, whose hits include Lucille and Islands in the Stream, called it the “culmination” of his career.
“I’m flattered, I’m honored and I’m nervous,” the singer said before the ceremony.
Kenny Rogers, 75, helped lead the way for crossover country pop hits and was in a reflective mood.
Kenny Rogers, Bobby Bare and the late Jack Clement joined the Country Music Hall of Fame at its museum in Nashville
“What I’ve realized is that success is not a happening, it’s a journey,” he said.
“I think without this it would have been incomplete.”
Bobby Bare, 78, whose hits include Dee-troit City and How I Got to Memphis, said of his induction: “It means that I will forever be referred to as a hall of famer. It sounds real good.”
Fellow inductee Jack Clement died from liver cancer in August this year at 82, but he had found out five months earlier that he would be honored.
Jack Clement was inducted as a producer, songwriter and performer, having penned some of Johnny Cash’s early hits and been responsible for the famous mariachi horns on Ring of Fire, which was performed at the ceremony.
He also worked with Jerry Lee Lewis and discovered Charley Pride.
[googlead tip=”patrat_mediu” aliniat=”stanga”]Today, police and safety investigators inspected the Saturday night’s tragedy site at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, where the stage collapsed. Governor Mitch Daniels was among those who put the biggest blame on wind gusts that came sooner than expected, ahead of a powerful storm.
Today, police and safety investigators inspected the Saturday night's tragedy site at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, where the stage collapsed
[googlead tip=”lista_mica” aliniat=”stanga”]In the morning, family members of dozens of injured concert-goers and workers were standing vigil at area hospitals. The collapse of overhead stage rigging onto thousands of people waiting for country duo Sugarland to take the stage and killed 4 people at the scene and sent other 45 to hospitals, according to revised injury numbers issued by Indiana State Police today. At least other 20-25people checked themselves into hospitals overnight.
Total deaths of 2011 Indiana State Fair tragedy grew to 5 early this morning.
Total deaths grew to 5 early this morning, when a lighting crew member – who had climbed atop the structure to aim a light before the collapse – was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The four who died at the scene were:
Tammy Vandam, 42, Wanatah, Indiana;
Glenn Goodrich, 49, Indianapolis, Indiana;
Alina Bigjohny, 23 Fort Wayne, Indiana;
Christina Santiago, 29, Chicago Illinois.
Nathan Byrd, 51, from Indianapolis, died at Methodist Hospital early this morning. Byrd, the lighting crew member, who had been working up in the rigging when the collapse happened, was crushed when the rigging came down.
[googlead tip=”vertical_mare” aliniat=”dreapta”] Saturday night, about 9 p.m., after the opening act at the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand had finished, but before Sugarland performance, an announcer told the attendees of approaching severe weather. But officials held off on ordering an evacuation.
A timeline issued today by Indiana State Police showed that at 8:49 p.m. – about 25 minutes before the storm’s forecasted arrival – a strong gust of wind blew through the fairgrounds, toppling the stage setup onto those closest to the stage. As the crowd scattered, scores of fans rushed toward the metal structure to lift it off victims.
“What you saw last night was a display of best qualities of both public and private Hoosiers,” Governor Mitch Daniels said during a news conference this morning in the Farm Bureau Building at the fairgrounds. Governor became choked up as he talked about the emergency response.
The Indiana Fairgrounds was closed today, but activities were scheduled to resume on Monday. Indiana State Fair officials are still considering alternate plans for events set for the grandstand this week, including concerts by Janet Jackson and Train, but no details have been announced.
After the fair’s tomorrow reopening at 8 p.m., there will be a public remembrance for the victims at 9 a.m. at the Free Stage.
At the morning’s news conference, Daniels was joined by State Fair Director Cindy Hoye and State Police 1st Sgt. Dave Bursten. First Lady Cheri Daniels and Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard both attended but did not speak.
Dave Bursten said the early indication was that the “isolated significant wind gust” took authorities and event coordinators by surprise, since the storm itself was still about 30 minutes from arriving. They had been in contact with the National Weather Service for much of the evening.
Bursten noted that the midway and other areas on the grounds weren’t damaged so severely, and some not at all.
Cindy Hoye said the Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration (IOSHA) is investigating the structure of the stage rigging, which was provided by Mid-America Sound Corp. of Greenfield.
“Some survivors’ injuries are still considered life-threatening,” Dave Bursten said.
“For others, they may be life-altering,” he added.
The extent of most victims’ injuries or their conditions is still unclear, but at least few people were reportedly in critical condition or intensive care units. Three children were still being treated today at Riley Hospital for Children.
Four deaths and more than 40 people injured after a stage collapsed Saturday night during a storm at the Indiana State Fair held in Indianapolis, where the country group Sugarland was set to perform, were confirmed today by the authorities.
At least 40 people were reported injured in the incident at the fairgrounds in Indianapolis. Strong winds caused the stage rigging for the outdoor concert to collapse, trapping and injuring concert attendees before 9 p.m.
Four deaths and more than 40 people injured after a stage collapsed Saturday night during a storm at the Indiana State Fair held in Indianapolis, where the country group Sugarland was set to perform
Details on the conditions of those injured were not immediately known.
No group was performing at that moment. The opening act had finished, and people were waiting for Sugarland to take the stage.
Emergency crews were called to the scene, and workers were setting up a command center to tend to those who were injured.
Thousands of concert attendees were being evacuated from the Indiana State fairground grandstand to a nearby coliseum when a wind gust brought down the stage rigging. The rigging fell onto an area where some fans were seated.
“It was like it was in slow motion,” Amy Weathers, concert attendee, told the Star.
“You couldn’t believe it was actually happening.”
Injured people were being moved to a tunnel below the stage.
Injured people were being moved to a tunnel below the stage.
Injured people were being moved to a tunnel below the stage, according to the Star.
An Associated Press photographer, Darron Cummings was attending the concert as a Sugarland fan shortly before the collapse with some friends. He told that an announcer gave the crowd instructions on how to evacuate if the weather worsened, but said they hoped to get Sugarland on stage soon.
Darron Cummings said he and his friends went ahead and sought shelter in a nearby barn after seeing the weather radar.
“Then we heard screams. We heard people just come running,” Cummings told the AP.
Eyewitnesses told that some of the injured were in a VIP section in front of the stage known as the “Sugar Pit.” They also said a wall of dirt, dust, rain and wind came up the main thoroughfare of the fairgrounds just before the collapse.
“Panic kicked in when they seen the dust bowl coming in from the Midway,” a concert attendee, Darryl Cox told WTHR.
“There was lightning and the sky had gotten dark but it wasn’t raining when the wind suddenly toppled the rigging.”
“It was horrible, people were running and going crazy,” told WTHR-TV another person at the concert.
In 2009, a record 973,902 people attended the fair. The 150th Indiana State Fair was held August 9–20, 2006.
The state fair buildings and grounds are used for a variety of other shows while the fair is not being held. The largest building at the fairgrounds is the Pepsi Coliseum, formerly known as the Indiana State Fair Coliseum, where the Indiana Ice usually play. The fairgrounds are on 38th Street and Fall Creek Parkway.