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MERCURY ORBITS AJR
The Met brothers have a new label home. (5/17a)
NEW RELEASES: KING
KENDRICK RETURNS
Another record-breaking debut week. (5/17a)
PRIDE & JOY
From the archives (5/17a)
NEW & DEVELOPING ARTISTS: Q2 EDITION
Place your bets here. (5/17a)
STREAMING SONGS: SUMMER HEAT
His lucky number is 23. (5/16a)
SUPERSTAR RELEASES
Who's next?
MUSIC BIZ SPECIAL
It's Comic-Con for numbers geeks.
THE BIG CHEESE
Theories of evolution from 30,000 feet.
THE NEXT GIANT DEAL
A&R in overdrive.
Music City
AIN'T NO FESTIVAL LIKE AN iHEART COUNTRY FESTIVAL
5/11/22

This star-studded photo op, as you may have gathered from the headline, was made possible by the iHeart Country Festival, where Tom Poleman commissioned a heartfelt ballad about drinking rye and ginger and John Sykes just daydreamed about his beloved truck. Seen wishing they could drink us off their minds are (l-r) Poleman, iHeart's Rod Phillips, COJO Music/Warner Music Nashville's Cody Johnson, Columbia Nashville's Maren Morris, Valory/BMLG's Thomas Rhett, iHeart's Bobby Bones, Capitol Nashville's Carrie Underwood, Triple Tigers' Scotty McCreery, BBR/Broken Bow's Lainey Wilson, Jimmie Allen and Dustin Lynch, Sykes and iHeart's Jaclyn Tigue.

THE CAPITAL OF COUNTRY MUSIC
5/10/22

At Music Biz in Nashville, Sony Music Publishing boss Jon Platt and Nashville CEO Rusty Gaston celebrated their freshly inked deal with hit songwriter Ashley Gorley (in partnership with financial player Domain Capital Group) the Music City way: by posing for a down-home photo op with a whole passel of attorneys! Gorley, whom Gaston praised as “one of the most talented, hard-working and acclaimed songwriters in the world,” has placed some 400 compositions and written 59 #1s. His most recent hits include chart rockets for Morgan Wallen, Chris Stapleton and Thomas Rhett; he’s also penned biggies for Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton, Dan + Shay, Jon Bon Jovi and Weezer, to name but a few. Shortly after this photo was snapped, Domain Capital Group’s Pete Chiappetta assembled a consortium to buy the planet Neptune. Seen wishing they could celebrate this milestone with anyone but us are (front, l-r) Gaston, Platt, Gorley and Chiappetta; and (back, l-r) Domain’s Rod Riley, Loeb & Loeb’s Megan Pekar and John Rolfe, SMP Nashville’s Cam Caldwell, Domain’s Isabela Salas and Loeb & Loeb’s Derek Crownover.

UMG NASHVILLE UPS NICK KAPER
5/9/22

UMG Nashville has upped Nick Kaper to Director of Promotion and Radio Marketing. 

In his new role, Kaper will provide airplay analytics and chart strategy across all four UMG Nashville imprints.

Working his way up from the mailroom, the Belmont University alum previously held roles like Mercury Nashville Coordinator, West Coast regional rep for EMI Records Nashville and Midwest regional rep for Mercury Nashville prior to his promotion.

“I am incredibly happy to announce Nick Kaper’s promotion,” said UMG Nashville EVP of Promotion, Royce Risser. “This role is critical to our success, and we are excited to see him step in and crush it.”

“Between the incredible lineup of artists and the all-star promotion department, I’ve been nothing short of spoiled since starting at UMG,” added Kaper. “I am so excited be working with our entire roster in this next chapter and can’t thank Royce and the promotion team enough for the opportunity to do so!”  

ACM LIFTING LIVES TO OPEN GRANT CYCLE
5/5/22

ACM Lifting Lives has announced that its 2022-2023 grant cycle will open for submissions from 5/15-6/16.

With support from Gibson Gives and Country Thunder, among other donors, the month-long submission window is tied with Mental Health Awareness Month, expanding the COVID-19 Respond Fund’s work into its next phase of supporting mental health organizations, as well as individuals struggling with those issues.

“We are proud to re-open submissions for our grant making process and support the essential work being done by organizations providing music therapy as a way of healing,” said Lyndsay Cruz, Executive Director of ACM Lifting Lives.

Eligible beneficiaries for grant cycle includes individuals working within the Country Music requesting funding for mental wellness services, orgs providing direct aid to benefit the mental and emotional health of Country Music industry members and 501c3 eligible orgs that provide music therapy programs for health-related needs.   

Additionally, ACM Lifting Lives has also confirmed support for Porter’s Call, a place where artists can find counsel, support and encouragement for issues they face in their careers and personal lives, as well as Music Health Alliance’s Mental Health Fund, which helps provide struggling music industry professionals with essential mental health services.

For details on eligibility requirements and how to submit, click here.

A SWEET SWEEPSTAKE WITH MUNSICK
5/5/22

Warner Music Nashville’s Ian Munsick has partnered with Southern Recipe Small Batch for a sweepstakes.

Running through 8/31, fans who submit a note, picture and/or video will be entered to win a weekly giveaway, concert tickets and a $1,500 grand prize, as well as a year’s supply of pork rinds.

Southern Recipe Small Batch will also donate up to $5k on behalf of the grand prize winner to Musically Fed. The nonprofit recently named Munsick its first-ever Artist Ambassador.

Earlier this year, Munsick—who earned an iHeartRadio Rocky Mountain Country Music Award for “Long Haul”—recruited Cody Johnson for “Long Live Cowgirls,” which has amassed nearly 15m streams RTD, and most recently dropped “Cowboy Killer” f/Ryan Charles.

Currently on his own headlining dates, Munsick continues to tour alongside labelmate Johnson and will hit the road with Morgan Wallen later this summer. Tickets can be purchased here. To submit for the sweepstake, click here

Photo Credit: Greywood

BORN & RAISED SETS LINEUP
5/4/22

Zach Bryan, Cody Jinks and Lynyrd Skynyrd are set to headline the second annual Born & Raised Music Festival.

Presented by AEG and Patriot Auto Group, the festival returns to the Pryor Creek Music Festival Grounds in Oklahoma from 9/16-9/18 and features more than 35 acts across its lineup, including Brothers Osborne, Margo Price, Randy Rogers Band, Josh Abbott Band, Jason Boland & the StragglersWade Bowen, Flatland Cavalry, American Aquarium and more.

“The reaction from fans in year one of Born & Raised was overwhelmingly reassuring that the festival we put together was a success,” said Festival Producer Mike DuCharme of AEG Presents. “We hope people sing along with some of their favorite bands plus discover some new ones to add to their daily playlists.”

Tickets for the weekend start at $129.50 and will be available for pre-sale on 5/6 and to the public on 5/9. For more info and package options, click here.

Born & Raised Music Festival made its debut in 2021 with performances from the likes of Jinks, Bryan, ZZ Top, Parker McCollumJack Ingram and more. 

BBR UPS TWO
5/4/22

BBR Music Group has upped Katie Kerkhover to VP of A&R and Chris Poole to Sr. Director of A&R.

Previously Sr. Director, Creative, in music publishing, Kerkhover will now oversee artists across Broken Bow Records, Stoney Creek Records and Wheelhouse Records, as well as scout, sign and develop new talent for the roster. She will report directly to Jon Loba, President, Recorded Music & Publishing, Nashville.

The move reflects the continued alignment within BMG’s recorded and publishing teams in Nashville under the dual leadership responsibilities of Loba. 

On Kerhover’s promotion, Loba notes, “I’m excited to have her and Chris Oglesby lead our respective recorded and publishing creative teams and further strengthen the unique relationship between the two.”

Poole, who joined the company in 2018 as Director of A&R, will continue to scout and develop up-and-coming artists in his new position as well as guide the label group’s roster. He will report to Kerkhover. 

“Chris Poole’s promotion to Sr. Director is beyond well-deserved,” added Loba. “He is the epitome of the young A&R exec who has his finger on the pulse of creative conversations in Nashville.”

Pictured below are (l-r) Kerkhover and Poole.

Photo Credit: Cody Heckber

MIRANDA'S PALOMINO PROFILE ON SUNDAY MORNING
5/2/22

Acclaimed singer/songwriter Miranda Lambert was the subject of a CBS Sunday Morning profile over the weekend. Her latest effort, Palomino (Vanner/RCA Nashville), soared to #1 on iTunes following the broadcast.

The Texas native shared an expansive look at her storied career and the new project with correspondent Lee Cowan, discussing everything from her businesses and her marriage to her new album and passion for supporting rescue animals. 

The ACM Entertainer of the Year hosted Cowan at her new Downtown Nashville restuarant/bar Casa Rosa for the conversation and performed intimate renditions of “In His Arms” and “Strange” from the venue’s stage. 

Watch the segment below.