Childish Gambino, Lady Gaga, Pink and Little Big Town will perform at the 2018 Grammy Awards

By Kelli Skye Fadroski | [email protected] | Orange County Register January 4, 2018 at 2:46 pm As the 60th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony rapidly approaches, the Recording Academy has revealed the first crop of performers for its extravagant evening of music, which will be hosted by James Corden of “The Late Late Show” and take place on Sunday, Jan. 28, at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Grammy-nominated artists — including R&B singer-songwriter Childish Gambino, world-renowned pop star Lady Gaga, edgy pop songstress Pink and darling country quartet Little Big Town — will perform live as the Grammys air on CBS beginning at 4:30 p.m. pacific. Childish Gambino, also known as writer, actor, producer and director Donald Glover, is nominated for five awards, including album of the year and best contemporary album for “Awaken, My Love!” His single, “Redbone,” is nominated for record of the year, best R&B song and best traditional R&B performance. Though her album “Joanne” didn’t make it into any of the top categories, six-time Grammy winner Lady Gaga was still nominated for best pop vocal album and the single “Million Reasons” is nominated for best pop solo performance. Little Big Town’s “The Breaker” is nominated for best country album and its single, “Better Man,” which was written by country artist-turned-pop diva Taylor Swift, is nominated for best country duo/group performance. And the always entertaining Pink, a three-time Grammy winner, is nominated in the best pop solo performance category for her single “What About Us.” Though the Grammy Awards have been held on the west coast for the past decade and a half, they will return to New York City in 2018. To help celebrate the occasion, two-time Grammy and Tony award-winning singer Patti LuPone and actor and singer Ben Platt, who is a first-time nominee in the best Continue Reading

Little Big Town just getting better

By John Goodspeed Updated 12:27 pm, Tuesday, February 7, 2017 window._taboola = window._taboola || []; _taboola.push({ mode: 'thumbnails-c', container: 'taboola-interstitial-gallery-thumbnails-5', placement: 'Interstitial Gallery Thumbnails 5', target_type: 'mix' }); _taboola.push({flush: true}); Photo: Gary Fountain, For The Chronicle / Gary Fountain/For The Chronicle Image 1of/5 CaptionClose Image 1 of 5 Little Big Town performing at the Woodlands. (For the Chronicle/Gary Fountain, October 20, 2016) Little Big Town performing at the Woodlands. (For the Chronicle/Gary Fountain, October 20, 2016) Photo: Gary Fountain, For The Chronicle / Gary Fountain/For The Chronicle Image 2 of 5 TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 09: Little Big Town performs the national anthem before the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) less TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 09: Little Big Town performs the national anthem before the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship Game at Raymond James Stadium on January 9, 2017 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo ... more Photo: Kevin C. Cox, Staff / Getty Images Image 3 of 5 FILE - This Feb. 15, 2016 file photo shows Karen Fairchild, from left, Jimi Westbrook, Kimberly Schlapman, and Philip Sweet of Little Big Town at the 58th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles. The Recording Academy announced Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017, that Grammy winners Little Big Town and Gary Clark Jr. will perform on the live telecast on Feb. 12, 2017. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File) less FILE - This Feb. 15, 2016 file photo shows Karen Fairchild, from left, Jimi Westbrook, Kimberly Schlapman, and Philip Sweet of Little Big Town at the 58th Continue Reading

Little Big Town singer Kimberly Schlapman adopts baby girl Dolly Grace

Little Big Town just got a little bigger. Singer Kimberly Schlapman announced Thursday that she and husband Stephen had adopted a baby girl. “The New Year brought our family new love,” Schlapman captioned an adorable family photo with 9-year-old daughter Daisy Pearl. “We're so excited to introduce you to Daisy's little sister, Dolly Grace.” Schlapman’s bandmates joined in the celebration of the new family member. “Dolly Grace, you don’t even know how much you are already loved,” Karen Fairchild wrote on Instagram. “Meet the newest member of the LBT family,” Jimi Westbrook wrote. “We love you lil’ Dolly!!” Continue Reading

CMTA Awards 2016: Tim McGraw, Carrie Underwood win big; Pharrell performs with country act Little Big Town

Tim McGraw ended Carrie Underwood’s four-year-winning streak for the top prize at the 2016 CMT Music Awards with his music video for “Humble and Kind” — which features footage provided by Oprah Winfrey — while stars from outside the country music world performed onstage, including Pharrell, Cheap Trick and Pitbull. McGraw thanked Winfrey, Tyler Perry, video director Wes Edwards and others onstage Wednesday night at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. “When we make a footprint as an artist, there’s a lot of people involved in making that footprint. And we do it because we hope to move you, we hope that we make a little bit of an impact in your life, and you care a little bit about what we do,” McGraw said onstage. “Thank y’all for caring a little bit about what we do, because we care a whole lot about y’all.” “Humble and Kind” was inspired by McGraw’s daughter’s leaving for college and the touching video features people of all backgrounds and ethnicities. It includes footage from the OWN TV series, “Belief.” At the fan-voted show, he beat out Underwood, who has won video of the year consecutively since 2012 and also won the honor in 2010 and 2007. Underwood still walked away as the night’s big winner with two awards: She took home female video of the year and CMT performance of the year. The singer also performed while others brought pop, rock and rap stars to help onstage. Pharrell joined Little Big Town for a fun and funky performance that featured a number of background dancers. The hit-making “Happy” performer produced Little Big Town’s eight-song album, “Wanderlust,” to be released Friday. Little Big Town won group/duo video of the year for their Grammy-winning smash, “Girl Crush.” It was their first-ever CMT win. Continue Reading

CMA 2015 nominations: Little Big Town, Eric Church lead pack

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Little Big Town crushed it with their song “Girl Crush” and are tied with Eric Church with five nominations each at the 49th annual Country Music Association Awards. In the nominations announced Wednesday, the four-part vocal group rode the success of the song to nominations for album of the year for “Pain Killer”; vocal group; musical event for a duet with Miranda Lambert; music video; and single of the year. The songwriters for “Girl Crush,” Liz Rose, Lori McKenna and Hillary Lindsey, also received a nomination for song of the year. The sultry song, which became a No. 1 country hit, generated an overhyped controversy over misinterpretation of the lyrics, in which singer Karen Fairchild sings about the appeal of another woman who has captivated a man’s attention. “It’s alluring,” said Little Big Town singer Phillip Sweet. “I think that’s probably why it had the controversy it had to begin. It’s not deceptive, but it’s painting a picture with the emotion of the music.” The five nominations mark the most the band has ever received in a year and cap off a big year for the band. They were inducted into the Grand Ole Opry last year and hosted the CMA Music Festival television special this June, but then had to halt touring for part of the summer while singer Jimi Westbrook recovered from vocal surgery. “I think this was the first summer that we have ever taken off,” Sweet said. “It was nice for us to collect ourselves and our energies. Coming back now, the shows that we have been playing for the last few weekends, it feels incredible and the crowds have been better than ever. Jimi feels stronger than ever.” Church earned his first nomination for entertainer of the year and was also nominated for male vocalist, single, song and musical event of the year for a duet with Keith Urban. Continue Reading

Little Big Town’s Kimberly Schlapman writes cookbook

Country music's culinary history is richer than a red velvet cake: Kitty Wells, Loretta Lynn and June Carter (sharing Mother Maybelle Carter's recipes) are just a few of the singers who've published cookbooks, and contemporary artists such as Trisha Yearwood, Martina McBride and Zac Brown have kept the tradition alive by releasing their own.Little Big Town's Kimberly Schlapman, who has hosted her own cooking show, "Kimberly's Simply Southern," for three seasons, is the newest singer to write a cookbook. "Oh, Gussie! Cooking and Visiting in Kimberly's Southern Kitchen" is coming out April 15. Written with Martha Foose, a James Beard Award winner, the book will share some of Schlapman's favorite recipes, as well as anecdotes about her Georgia roots and life with Little Big Town. Continue Reading

Little Big Town bleeds for new album ‘Pain Killer’

As stressful as the studio time was, the members have treasured memories of the songwriting sessions that produced many of the songs on the album.With the release of edgy new album "Pain Killer," members of Little Big Town humbly admit their songs made it onto their own play lists. But the artistic satisfaction came at a price.This go around, Karen Fairchild and husband Jimi Westbrook, Kimberly Schlapman and Phillip Sweet said they creatively bled for the music. The frustration was a new feeling for the band that's been together for the past 15 years."Pain Killer" is the second album they have made with producer Jay Joyce. Their last, "Tornado," was completed in three weeks and sold more than a million copies. When "Pain Killer" materialized at a slower pace, they all felt the pressure. Before long, members were second-guessing themselves in what Westbrook called an "unspoken struggle.""Sometimes I think if something wasn't coming together as fluidly as the last album, I'd get frustrated," Sweet said. "It was a false standard I was holding, but we shouldn't have expected anything to fall together.""We had written for months, but we got in there and we were wrestling certain songs to the ground," Fairchild said. "I thought, 'What are we doing?' … There's a lot of humanity in this room right now."In a fall jam-packed with album releases, Little Big Town's "Pain Killer," out Tuesday, is what happens when a group shelves its fear, reimagines its sound and still tends to its musical roots.Fellow country singer Blake Shelton tweeted the album would be "one of the most important albums in country music history... Congratulations and thank you @littlebigtown!!!"Fairchild described "Pain Killer" as "'70s Jerry Reed-inspired country funk."Little Big Town's famous four-part harmonies are still there, just used in different ways. The songs have an edge, often with a drive or twist that Schlapman said, "are the best we've ever been afforded."Fairchild said it's a Continue Reading

5 things to know about Little Big Town

On Friday night, Little Big Town (Karen Fairchild, Kimberly Schlapman, Phillip Sweet and Jimi Westbrook) will pay tribute to Southern rock legend Gregg Allman during a new installment of Skyville Live, an online concert series filmed in Nashville.The concert, which also will feature performances by Taj Mahal and Chris Stapleton, will be live-streamed on the USA Today network beginning at 7 p.m. CST.Here are five things to know about this red-hot country quartet before tuning in.1. Little Big Town released its first single, “Don’t Waste My Time,” in 2002. It took the group another decade to reach the top of the charts. They did it with “Pontoon,” a song that would go on to win a Best Country Duo/Group Performance Grammy Award.2. The group's sweet harmonies can also be heard on albums by John Mellencamp, David Nail, Miranda Lambert, Lionel Richie, Collin Raye and Ashley Monroe. They’ll also appear on Vince Gill’s forthcoming record, which is due in February.3. Karen Fairchild recently launched her own clothing line, called Fair Child.4. Liz Rose, one of the writers of LBT’s Grammy-nominated hit “Girl Crush,” almost didn’t play the song for Schlapman and Fairchild when they were looking for inspiration and new material. "I said, 'You all are not going to cut this, but you all just have to hear it because we love it so much,' ” Rose told The Tennessean in 2014. "We played it and Karen went, 'Why wouldn't we cut this?' And 'Why weren't you going to play this for us?' ”5. Schlapman, host of the cooking show “Kimberly’s Simply Southern,” released a cookbook earlier this year called “Oh Gussie!: Cooking and Visiting in Kimberly's Southern Kitchen.” In April, she whipped up one of her recipes with The Tennessean’s food writer Jim Myers, who now has a grill(ed cheese) crush on the singer. Learn more about the Skyville Live performers Continue Reading

Country band Little Big Town covers Maroon 5,  Christina Aguilera hit single ‘Moves Like Jagger’

Little Big Town has the moves like Maroon 5. The country band covers the Adam Levine-fronted group's hit song, "Moves Like Jagger." In a video for "Scattered, Smothered & Covered," Little Big Town give the track an acoustic treatment complete with a banjo and upright bass -- and the group's trademark harmonizing. The original "Moves Like Jagger," which also features Christina Aguilera, debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard charts and has sold over two million copies in the U.S. alone since its May release. Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

Radio stations refuse to play Little Big Town’s ‘Girl Crush’ because of misunderstood lyrics

The downfall of Little Big Town’s latest single is not for lack of talent, but lyrics misinterpreted by conservative listeners as lesbian romance. Complaints have left the song “Girl Crush” struggling to stay on Billboard’s charts as radio stations cave in to listeners that say the song promotes the “gay agenda,” industry insiders have suggested. With lyrics like “I want to taste her lips, yeah, ‘cause they taste like you. I want to drown myself in a bottle of her perfume. I want her long blond hair. I want her magic touch,” at the beginning of the song, it’s an easy presumption. But Karen Fairchild, the lead vocalist on the song, says their interpretation of the lyrics is something else entirely once you get past the hook. It actually depicts a woman’s jealousy over her ex-boyfriend’s new lover. “It’s a genius lyric, such a beautifully written song about jealousy,” Fairchild told the Washington Post, and it has nothing to do with a same-sex couple. “That’s just shocking to me, the close-mindedness of that, when that’s just not what the song was about ... but what if it were? It’s just a greater issue of listening to a song for what it is,” Fairchild added. The song off the album “Pain Killers” was released in Dec. 2014 and written by female songwriters Lori McKenna, Hillary Lindsey and Liz Rose. This week’s Billboard country charts shows the song at the No. 32 slot for radio airplay, which does not include digital downloads. Despite last year’s coming out of country artists Ty Herndon and Billy Gilman, backlash against “Girl Crush” has come as a surprise. KAWO-FM in Boise, Idaho fielded phone calls from upset listeners who threatened to boycott the station for playing the song, the Washington Post reported. As a result, the radio station no longer Continue Reading