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A Closer Look @ Smithfield | Backstage At The Opry

We go backstage at the Grand Ole Opry with emerging country duo Smithfield as they make their Opry debut.  Get to know them a little better, find out how it feels for them to be making their debut on the Opry stage, and who they would most like to meet of the Opry members.

Watch the interview and some behind-the-scenes footage from backstage of the Opry below:

Watch Smithfield as they perform their single “Hey Whiskey” on the Opry stage.

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A Closer Look @ Sister Hazel As They Discuss Their 13th Studio Album, Live Performance DVD

We sat down recently with the platinum-selling band, Sister Hazel, as they discuss their newest release and 13th studio album in the video interview below.

Here’s a little throwback and my personal favorite pop hit of theirs when they first came on the music scene.

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In their second showing on the country music charts this year, platinum-selling band, Sister Hazel, makes another strong debut with the stunning 14-track live performance DVD, “Unplugged From Daryl’s House Club,” which features their classic hits and new offerings for a one-of-a-kind intimate live experience. The album debuted at #75 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart.

In February, Sister Hazel debuted “Lighter In The Dark” at #4 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart, #6 on Billboard’s Independent Albums chart, #30 on Billboard’s Top Current Albums chart and #79 on the Billboard 200 album chart. First week sales of the new CD were 8,352 units.

Commenting on this year’s success of two Billboard charting albums, Ken Block, Sister Hazel’s lead singer said, “It’s crazy exciting to us that we’ve had TWO new CD’s on the Billboard charts is less than a year! Huge thanks to all the Hazelnuts – And especially to all the new fans out there who are just now discovering Sister Hazel’s music, live shows, and our signature events. We’re having a Blast!”

For more information on Sister Hazel visit http://www.sisterhazel.com. Follow Sister Hazel @SisterHazelBand, Instagram/sisterhazelband and Facebook.com/SisterHazel. **Suggested Tweet: @SisterHazelBand Debuts on Billboard Country Albums Chart at #75 with #Unplugged @DarylsHouseClub and at #4 with “Lighter in the Dark”

ABOUT SISTER HAZEL:

Originating from Gainesville, FL, Sister Hazel is comprised of five gifted, seasoned musicians whose well-spring of natural talent has been called “one of the Top 100 Most Influential Independent Performers of the last 15 years” by Performing Songwriter Magazine. Song “All for You” topped the adult alternative charts during the summer of 1997 and the success propelled their album to platinum status. Sister Hazel has been equally attentive to connecting with their audience through social media. In their first showing on the country music charts they made a strong debut with “Lighter In The Dark” at #4 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart, #6 on Billboard’s Independent Albums chart, #30 on Billboard’s Top Current Albums chart and #79 on the Billboard 200 album chart. Living up to their fan-centered reputation, the band hosts annual events like “Hazelnut Hang,” that focuses on fan involvement and are co-founders of the “Rockboat,” a cruise featuring nonstop opportunities for fan/artist interaction. In addition to the events and touring, the band also gives back with “Lyrics For Life.” Founded by singer Ken Block, the charity unites musicians and celebrities for concerts and auctions to benefit cancer research and patient-care charities.

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A Closer Look @ Jamie Lynn Spears As She Talks New Music And New Sound

We caught up with singer/songwriter/actress Jamie Lynn Spears at the most recent CMT Next Women of Country event this past November at City Winery in Nashville. Host Esseri Holmes talks with her about her new music.

Check out our interview with her below to find out what she’s been up to!

Watch this acoustic session in Nashville of her latest single “Sleepover”.

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A Closer Look @ The California Honeydrops

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The California Honeydrops based in the Bay area seems primed and ready to explode onto the music scene with their special fusion of jazz, blues, funk, R&B, Southern soul, and American.

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[Video] A Closer Look @ Home Free | Interview & Show Review

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Photo credit: Patrice Majors

Yesterday we sat down with country sensation Home Free just before their show at TPAC in Nashville on Dec. 13th to discuss their new album, favorite Christmas memories, favorite holiday dishes, and much more!

Get to know this incredible country vocal group who first gained national attention and won fans’  hearts as the winners of NBC’s “The Sing Off” in the video below.

The show itself was a great mix of country classics with a new twist, original tunes, and Christmas favorites.  Their delivery was absolutely mesmerizing with solid harmonies all throughout their performance.  It’s pretty incredible what they are capable of doing with just their voices alone.  In-between songs, they light-heartedly interacted with the crowd keeping the concert going at a great pace and effortless flow.

@homefreeguys singing a Christmas favorite tonight at TPAC in Nashville! #HomeFree #Christmas

A video posted by FOCUS on the 615 (@focus_on_the_615) on

A highlight of the evening was the drum solo segment minus the actual drums featuring the beatboxer of the group, Adam Rupp, that was met with a standing ovation.

Some amazing beatboxing from @homefreeguys tonight! #HomeFree Watch them tomorrow on #TheTonightShow!

A video posted by FOCUS on the 615 (@focus_on_the_615) on

Definitely a show worth every penny that I would gladly see again!

Rated 5 out of 5 stars. 

Watch them tonight on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” as they join icon Kenny Rogers for a music performance that you don’t want to miss!

Don’t forget their new album, COUNTRY EVOLUTION, is in stores now, and available at all digital retailers.

For more information, visit their website by clicking here.

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About Home Free:
Since being crowned NBC’s “The Sing-Off” victors, Home Free has made their mark on the music scene selling more than 150,000 copies combined of their popular albums, CRAZY LIFE and FULL OF CHEER, embarking on two major national tours and amassing over 53 million YouTube views. The five-man band from Minnesota, comprised of Austin Brown (high tenor), Tim Foust (bass), Rob Lundquist (tenor), Adam Rupp (vocal percussion/beat boxer) and Chris Rupp (baritone), dropped their debut album CRAZY LIFE in 2014, which hit No. 1 on iTunes Country chart and No. 4 overall. The release of their third studio album, COUNTRY EVOLUTION has elevated the band “from auxiliary entertainment to headlining attraction” (Times Leader) and hit No. 4 on the Billboard Country Albums chart. Produced by longtime collaborator Darren Rust, the deluxe version includes five originals and nine new renditions of hit songs that showcase the band’s extraordinary talents, tight harmonies and intelligent arrangements that are uniquely their own. Founded in 2000 during collegiate years, Home Free has been perfecting their live show for nearly a decade performing together for packed crowds at major fairs, colleges and theatres. Their experiences on the road helped carry them to the Sing-Off victory, build a loyal fan base and bring their homegrown country style into the national spotlight.

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Tip Tip, Hooray! Aaron Tippin Celebrates 25 Years in the Biz

2015 marks a special year for Mr. Aaron Tippin. The country music singer-songwriter is celebrating 25 years in the industry! Tippin stands on Nicki D‘s trusty Red Towel and dishes about his career milestone, fitness regimen, and delicious blackberry wine!

The “You’ve Got to Stand For Something” singer reveals, “Actually the first 10 years, I don’t even remember what happened. It was a whirlwind… There were times when it was year three or four, and I wondered if there was going to be a year five. I’m lucky to still be out here making music.”

Speaking of music, fans can enjoy both old and new tunes on Tippin’s two-disc 25th Anniversary album Aaron Tippin 25. “I’m just proud as a peacock. There are 10 of the old hits, 10 new hits, and 5 songs you probably wouldn’t expect old Aaron Tippin to do. There’s Aaron Tippin doing Frank Sinatra, which sounds like Hank Sinatra.”

The star admits that he does country music because he likes it, but it’s not the only thing he can do. This record also includes hints of bluegrass and classic rock.

When asked what his secret is to longevity in the business, Tippin shared, “I think the key to it is the fans. Every night for 25 years, I got through with the show, wiped the sweat off, got me an energy drink, and I went straight out to the front of the stage and signed autographs until the last one was signed. And I’m still doing that today.”

To further commemorate his 25 years, Tippin partnered with Stonehaus Winery (coincidentally also celebrating their 25th anniversary) to release a wine called “Aaron Tippin Country Jam“.

“I wanted something that most of my fans would appreciate and enjoy, so we’re starting out with a blackberry. And it is good, good, GOOD!”

And of course when chatting with a former bodybuilder, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t throw some fitness questions in there. Even at the age of 57, Tippin has no shame bringing the “guns” out. Look at those muscles!

Tippin swears by good old-fashioned push-ups, squats, and sit-ups. Check out the video above to find out the singer’s go-to healthy food, favorite cheat meal, and tips for staying “right and tight.”

 

In case you’re wondering whose physique in country music Tippin is impressed with, he revealed, “Aw shoot, Joe Diffie back in his day. Joe hung out in the gym quite a bit. Chad Brock… I guess nowadays I would say Tim McGraw.” One can’t argue with that, but we think it’s safe to say that Tippin is OUR fitness inspiration!

The country star certainly has a lot to celebrate in 2015. This year also marks 20 years of marriage for Tippin and wife Thea. Congrats, you lovebirds!

About Aaron Tippin
Aaron Tippin’s fame was launched in 1990 with the release of his uncompromising single, “You’ve Got to Stand For Something.”  He followed with other major hits including “Where the Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly,” “There Ain’t Nothing Wrong with the Radio” and “Kiss This.”
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[Video] A Closer Look @ The Doobie Brothers

Photo credit:  Patrice Majors

Photo credit: Patrice Majors

FOCUS on the 615 had the pleasure of catching up with Tom Johnston and Pat Simmons of The Doobie Brothers when they were in Nashville. And yes, Nicki D. definitely brought out The Red Towel (her version of The Red Carpet) for this special moment. The Doobies chat about their 14th album Southbound, which features several collaborations with your favorite country artists. Johnston and Simmons reveal what they think of Blake Shelton, things they have on their tour bus, and their secret to longevity in the music business. Plus: boxers, briefs, or banana hammocks? The rockstars answer this and more in our hilarious segment called The Doobie Deets Lightning Round!

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A Closer Look @ Tyler Farr | Get To Know Him In His Own Words

Tyler Farr - Suffer in PeaceTyler Farr just released his 2nd album last week entitled “Suffer In Peace”.  I personally think that it’s his best effort to date.  In stores now, be sure to check it out!

I especially love “A Guy Walks Into A Bar”.  Farr’s music always seems to come from a very authentic, honest place and that’s what I love about him.  His raspy baritone voice is one of my favorites on the radio today.  I highly-recommend his new album.  You won’t be disappointed.

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CMA Music Festival | Interview With Mary Sarah

Mary_Sarah_Music_PressPhoto_PhotoCredit_RussHarrington_004_hiWe sat down with up-and-coming country artist Mary Sarah to get to know her better during CMA Music Festival.

Go here to see her album review: http://focusonthe615.com/2014/06/15/album-review-mary-sarah-and-friends-bridges/

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A Closer Look @ Cole Swindell

Cole SwindellGet to know new artist Cole Swindell a little better with this interview at ACM Party For A Cause in Las Vegas!

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