The PSAs recorded by the artists, challenge ALL 300 million Americans to spend $10 and show their support for HonorOne, the organization which assists service men and women and their families. For each $10 spent at www.HonorOne.org, the supporter will receive a God Bless the USA Reminder Coin. Additionally, the supporter will be named on a patriotic shadow box gift to a wounded veteran. Each gift is handmade in the United States by disabled workers. 100% of the profits are donated to the best military charities, including those that provide vital family and post-traumatic stress disorder counseling for soldiers returning from the battlefield. For more information, or to support the “HonorOne Campaign,” please visit www.honorone.org.
Tag Archives | The Roys
THE ROYS latest full-length release, GYPSY RUNAWAY TRAIN, puts the award- winning sibling duo on the fast track. Due in stores on June 4, their third outing for Rural Rhythm Records contains six Roys’ originals and some of their all-time favorite Bluegrass and Country classics. Hot vocals, steamin’ pickin’, unbridled enthusiasm and passion make this 13-track wonder a celebration of the Roots genre. Says Elaine Roy, “There was a real sense of freedom surrounding this whole project. The album strips away all pretenses and gives the listener a glimpse of both the highs and lows of life.”
Recorded following the death of Lee’s beloved father-in-law and during Elaine’s painful divorce, the songs indeed address a broad spectrum of emotion. For Lee, the entire process was cathartic. “I wrote ‘Another Minute’ about my Grandpa,” he notes. “But it makes you think about all kinds of loss. Putting those feelings out there in a song makes it easier to live with them.”
Sports, music and television celebrities and personalities will team up on April 23 at the Pine Creek Golf Course in Mount Juliet, Tenn., to benefit Middle Tennessee children during the annual Christmas 4 Kids Celebrity Golf Tournament, presented by Prevost.
Tracy Lawrence, Bo Bice, David Ball, Fox17’s Kelly Sutton and Nick Paranjape, Lisa Matassa, Del Gray of Little Texas, Mickie James, Mark Cooke, Ty Brown, Lucas Hoge and Eric Heatherly are all slated to take part in the tournament, with more announcements to be made in the coming weeks. Bluegrass duo The Roys will return as the tournament hosts. The tournament is a three-player scramble with a celebrity as the fourth player.
Award-winning brother/sister duo THE ROYS have aligned with Team RealTree™ Outdoor Energy Drink for a strategic partnership. THE ROYS will travel to their upcoming shows in a newly-wrapped bus with design and camouflage graphics courtesy of RealTree. “It looks amazing,” says Lee Roy. “Very earthy,” Elaine adds with a wink. Other marketing efforts will be announced soon. Continue Reading →
Nashville, TN (August 27, 2012) — Media excitement surrounds THE ROYS‘ new EP, NEW DAY DAWNING (Rural Rhythm Records), which will be in stores tomorrow. The trendy brother/sister duo is launching its new music by utilizing a well-timed blitz campaign of television, radio, web appearances and social media. The outreach connects with multiple-genre targets, including Bluegrass, Country and Americana outlets.
And that’s a wrap. Averaging four hours of sleep per night, around noon on Friday we finished up our last of 23 interviews for CRS week. Aside from all of these (stay tuned to watch them all here), the week consisted of exclusive performances, incredible after parties and an overload of fun.
CRS again is the Country Radio Seminar, a weeklong event at the Nashville Convention Center “created to provide a platform and structure for education and growth for the Country Music format, serving as the conduit connecting the interests of Country Radio with the Country Music Industry” (crs.org). Our job was to cover it as part of the media… therefore we hung out in the media room and interviewed artists instead of going to the educational seminars. Not a bad gig.
Day 1 was Tuesday, a day that proved just a warm up for the week ahead. We started at Warner Music where we caught up with The Dirt Drifters, HER & Kings County and Ty Stone. HKC are some of the most energetic people we had the good fortune of meeting.
“Y’all kicked our hangover to the curb like a Bloody Mary.” - HER & Kings County
You’re welcome guys.
Then it was up to the Bridge Bar (a cool lounge area located on the walkway over Commerce Street) to meet up with The Roys, DJ Miller and Mark Cooke. Six interviews ain’t bad for a days work, and then we were invited to attend the Country Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony, followed by the Sony-hosted after party featuring Brent Anderson, Wade Bowen and Jerrod Niemann. They all brought the house down, especially Niemann’s finale, a cover of the classic Pride and Joy.
Now we come to the day where we almost had TOO MUCH fun. No kidding, it was almost hard to process it all. The day started early with an interview with The Farm, a great group of people, then Gloriana, who I’ve had my eye on since their first single Wild At Heart three years ago. Then finally, I got to meet Jana Kramer who is in fact the sweetest person in the entire world.
Then came lunch at The Ryman, one of the best musical venues in the country, for a performance by nearly the entire Universal Music Group roster. I won’t mention them all, but it started off with none other than King George Strait. Let me tell you, there is not a lot that can trump watching Troubadour live in The Ryman Auditorium as the sun shines through the stained glass windows. But if there was one thing that could, it was the way they closed the show: with Lionel Richie. And he immediately brought out one of his biggest fans to perform with him: Luke Bryan. They played Easy (Like Sunday Morning) one of my favorite songs of all time, and after a well-deserved standing ovation, we were back to the media room. So yeah, that was lunch.
After this, we caught up with Marlee Scott, Frankie Ballard and Jason Mitchell. Soon thereafter we found ourselves at a meet-and-greet with most of the aforementioned artists in attendance, along with Josh Turner, Scotty McCreary, Lauren Alaina, Luke Bryan, Craig Morgan, and others. No interviews with those folks unfortunately, but all very nice people.
But we weren’t done yet: after that was the sold out Lady Antebellum concert at Municipal Auditorium. Thompson Square opened the show in incredible fashion before Darius Rucker took the stage, singing a couple Hootie & the Blowfish classics as well as a Nashville favorite Family Tradition. Then it was Lady A’s turn, and they put on one impressive show. They played all the hits, and even featured surprise cameos from Luke Bryan (performing Do I, co-written by Charles Kelley and Dave Haywood) and Sara Evans (who performed Stronger, co-written by Hillary Scott). After the show we were exhausted… oh, but not done yet.
The after party was a Warner Music gathering with an 80’s theme. Artists played one of their own songs followed by an 80’s classic. On the roster were (among others) HER & Kings County, Ty Stone, Jana Kramer, THE FARM, Jason Jones, The Dirt Drifters, Frankie Ballard, Hunter Hayes, and Big & Rich who performed a rousing rendition of Madonna’s Like A Virgin.
After Wednesday, Thursday became a blur of sleep deprivation masked with too much caffeine. Of the interviews I remember, we had Glen Templeton, Due West, Amber Hayes, Jessie James, Deborah Allen, Adam Gregory, Maggie Sajak and Bucky Covington (forgive me if I forgot anyone). By the time Bucky finished out the day our batteries were drained figuratively AND literally (Bucky’s interview ran slightly short due to the death of the camera battery).
Lunch featured an acoustic set by Alan Jackson, and shortly thereafter we had a few hours where I was able to go home and nap before the Black River Entertainment showcase featuring Glen Templeton, Sarah Darling and Due West.
An easy day today! Only two interviews with icon Billy Dean and the lovely The McClymonts, and then on to lunch with Faith Hill! She debuted two new songs during her performance, and sounded as good as ever.
After a little break, we were back for the New Faces of Country Music show. The pre-show and happy hour featured a performance by The Lost Trailers, before we adjourned into the performance hall to see Hunter Hayes, Eli Young Band, Sunny Sweeney and David Nail. Thompson Square was also set to perform, but had to cancel due to an unfortunate death in Shawna’s family. The performances were amazing, and the after party was equally as amazing with everyone cutting loose after a long week.
We have pictures of all this excitement on our Facebook page, and will be sure to post these interviews online as soon as possible, so be sure to check back often! We would also like to thank each artist for their time, their management for their patience, and everyone who was involved with CRS for their hard work and dedication to an extraordinary week. Thank you!
Below is a recap of our CRS interviews:
The Dirt Drifters
HER & Kings County
“Some of my favorite Christmas memories are the ones we spent in Coal Branch, New Brunswick, Canada with my Mom’s side of the family, The LeBlancs. My Grandma LeBlanc played the fiddle and my uncles would play guitar and sing and my aunts would sing along too. (my Mom’s brothers and sisters) There was always a house full of people as the neighbors would always end up at my Grandparents house cause they knew music was being made. Along with good food and good company it was perfect. Through the years, as Lee and I began singing together and learned to play instruments we also joined in as we got older. Everytime Christmas rolls around my mind always goes back to those wonderful years of memories. It always takes me right back to those days.” — Elaine of The Roys
About The Roys
Bluegrass music is a unique art form that is as much about feel and instinct as it is technique. Blending proficiency and passion into a musically intoxicating package, The Roys make their debut with LONESOME WHISTLE, a spirited set that showcases the siblings’ stellar vocals, taut musicianship and enviable songwriting skills. “My first real love is bluegrass music,” says Lee. “When I was nine-years-old, I played in my first band and it was a bluegrass band. Ricky Skaggs has always been my hero, and even back in the early days of the Skaggs and Rice records; that’s really where I cut my teeth. As a matter of fact, we were listening to some old stuff we had done and it was amazing to hear Keith Whitley in my voice back then when I was a kid because I was really into those guys.”
With their reverence for legends such as Bill Monroe as well as contemporary torch bearers like Ricky Skaggs, The Roys have crafted a debut set that combines the best of bluegrass music’s traditions with the promise of its future. In recording the album, Lee and his sister Elaine, enlisted Skaggs’ famed band, Kentucky Thunder, and added Steve Brewster on Drums/Percussion and the amazing Randy Kohrs, and even recorded in Skaggs Place Studios. “Being with Ricky’s band was inspiring because those guys are awesome,” Elaine enthuses. “It really makes you want to do better because all of them are amazing musicians as well as amazing people. They love the music and they really put their hearts and souls into it. That’s why we really loved working with those guys.” “They are literally the masters of their craft,” adds Lee. “Randy Kohrs is playing dobro and Justin Moses is playing the banjo. Those guys live and breathe their instrument. It’s like an extension of their body.” Lee and Elaine are equally effusive in their praise when talking about bassist Mark Fain, guitarist Cody Kilby and fiddler Andy Leftwich, who co-produced the project with The Roys. Were they at all nervous stepping in to Skaggs’ studio to record their bluegrass debut? “Absolutely,” Elaine confesses. “The first day we walked in there and I started seeing all the pictures of Bill Monroe and Ricky Skaggs and seeing Ricky’s Grammys and all his awards everywhere, I was thinking ‘Oh my gosh! He is really the King of Bluegrass right now and we’re in his studio!’ It was very, very intimidating, but once we got in there and met with the guys and they were excited to be there, we put all that to bed. We thought ‘We’re here to sing and make music. It’s in God’s hands. It’s not even in our hands, so we’re just going to let it happen.’ Once we let it go, the magic happened.”
Recording LONESOME WHISTLE was the culmination of a dream that began for The Roys during childhood. Elaine and Lee were born in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, and the family later relocated to a small town called Coal Branch in New Brunswick, Canada. Music was always present in their household. “Traditional country music and bluegrass is what we grew up on. That’s all we listened to,” says Elaine. “My grandma played the fiddle. She would play Acadian tunes and my aunts and uncles would sing as well as played multiple instruments. It was very traditional roots music. We fell in love with that and our harmonies seemed to fit that style of music. That’s really what we truly love.” “At five or six-years-old, I became addicted to music and I just couldn’t get enough of the fiddle,” says Lee. “For me, the fiddle growing up was really THE instrument because it was what my grandma played.”
Elaine learned guitar and Lee picked up drums, bass and mandolin. By the time he was nine, he was performing publicly with a local bluegrass band, singing high tenor and playing mandolin. Elaine began singing at age five, and her first paid gig was at age 10. “I performed at a fair located a couple towns over from where we lived,” she recalls. “One of the people that we knew there knew that I sang and wanted me to sing with them. We worked out five or six songs and I got up there and did my little thing. I remember that as if it was yesterday.” The siblings continued to hone their skills and became sought after entertainers on the New England circuit before moving to Nashville and launching their own label, Pedestal Records. Since then The Roys have opened for George Jones, The Oak Ridge Boys and Chris Young, among others and have enjoyed such high profile national TV gigs as performing on Jerry Lewis’ annual Labor Day Telethon to benefit Muscular Dystrophy. The duo has performed their amazing version of the National Anthem for the Red Sox at Fenway Park, for President Bush at Andrews Air Force Base and at the Kansas Speedway for the NASCAR Truck Series. Even as their career has taken off, Lee and Elaine have found time to dedicate to helping those less fortunate. They took part in Montgomery Gentry’s annual Harley Ride in conjunction with the Academy of Country Music Awards and Little Big Town’s annual Ride for a Cure, benefiting the T.J. Martell Foundation. This past August, The Roys traveled to Bogota, Columbia with Compassion International where they spent four days in the impoverished country. Now, Elaine and Lee are each sponsoring a child, as well as serving as CI spokesmen. Faith, music and family are the cornerstones of The Roys’ life and they all intersect on LONESOME WHISTLE. The album showcases Elaine’s beautiful, emotion-laden voice and Lee’s effervescent tenor. The project also shines a spotlight on the duo’s songwriting abilities. They wrote the title track in two short hours while on the road in Maine one night. “The story is about a couple whose lives revolve around a train. The train carries him off to war, she sits and waits for the train to bring him back home – and in the end, the train does bring him home on his last ride,” explains Lee.
The highlights on the album are numerous, among them “Coal Minin’ Man,” a tribute to the life of the miner, and the high energy “Give A Ride To The Devil,” which offers up the sage wisdom that if you “give a ride to the devil, someday he’s gonna want to drive.” “Trailblazer” is Elaine’s nod to one of her heroes. “I have always been a Dolly Parton fan,” she says. “This song reminds me of her and all the women in the world chasing their dreams. I got the idea while sitting in traffic one day behind a Trailblazer SUV. So later that day in a writing session, we wrote this woman’s anthem. It’s one of my favorites on the album.” The Roys are excited about making their debut in the bluegrass music community they have listened to and loved for so long. These days they are getting validation from musicians they respect and are excited about their future. Andy Leftwich told us, “You are bluegrass vocalists. You are made for this format, it is who you are. This record is going to be huge because you guys are just so new and refreshing to the bluegrass community. You are going to be a household name!” Leftwich knows great bluegrass music and with one listen to LONESOME WHISTLE, it’s a sure bet others will agree and it won’t be long before everyone is singing the same tune.
The famous Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge celebrated its 51st birthday on Wednesday, November 23rd with a star-studded birthday bash all day out in the streets of downtown Nashville with a large stage on the corner of 5th & Broadway.
Crowds of music fans were treated all day long starting just after noon to live full-band shows just outside the doors of this famous honky tonk by such acts as The Roys, The McClymonts, and The Kentucky Headhunters,who were introduced to the stage by Opry star Little Jimmy Dickens. It didn’t end there, though. Then fans were treated to an after-party following Kid Rock’s concert at the Ryman Auditorium where Tootsie’s headliner, John Stone and his band, continued to entertain crowds well past midnight. This after-party even included a special drop-in performance by Kid Rock himself to the delight of the large crowd that had gathered.
I felt like a human popsickle after it was all said and done since I stayed out there enjoying all of the festivities all day then well past midnight. It was worth it, though! It had turned unusually cold that day in Nashville, but I was probably a bit thin-skinned since I had just returned from a Caribbean cruise just a couple of days before. I fair much better in warm tropical climates with a cool breeze blowing through my hair and sipping on a frozen rum concoction than I do in cold wet, climates where I actually BECOME the frozen “concoction”! lol Ok, enough about that! I guess you know where my head is at today! Yes, dreaming about being back on that ship! Obviously, so much so that I had forgotten to bring my jacket to keep me warm and had to buy a hoodie from the Tootsie’s souvenir shop just to keep warm during the event. Thank goodness for that hoodie! Anyway…
Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge opened its doors 51 years ago next to the legendary “mother church” of country music, the Ryman Auditorium. Mom’s was the original name of this famous honky tonk before Tootsie Bess bought the establishment in 1960. Tootsie credits a painter with naming the location when she walked up one day to find the outside of it painted orchid. So, the name was born after the owner, the color, and it was also her favorite flower.
Since the doors opened at Tootsie’s 51 years ago, countless country legends have walked through its doors. Many of its famous patrons slipped out the back door of the Ryman Auditorium across the alley into the back door of Tootsie’s to enjoy a beer or two and enjoy some music. Legends like Patsy Cline, Kris Kristofferson, Faron Young, Willie Nelson, Tom T. Hall, Hank Cochran, Mel Tillis, Roger Miller, Webb Pierce, Waylon Jennings….just to name a few. Careers have been launched for people like Terri Clark, Joanna Smith, and Glen Templeton, songs have been inspired about it like “The Wettest Shoulders in Town” and “What’s Tootsies Gonna Do When They Tear the Ryman Down?”, movies have been filmed there like ‘Coal Miner’s Daughter’, and countless singers/songwriters have taken to its stages in hopes to be seen by the right people who could make their dreams come true.
Tootsie’s is a Nashville institution and landmark that will no doubt continue for, at least, 51 more years to come. I have no doubt. As long as the Ryman stands, those doors should continue to lead through the back alley to Tootsie’s and the many other honky tonks that line the streets of Broadway where many country music fans from around the world continue to visit in hopes that they might possibly get a glimpse of their favorite country star who decides they just might drop in for a beer or two and hear a little live music, too. And, that’s definitely not so far-fetched! You never know WHO just might enter through that back door late at night after the Ryman has closed its doors for the evening.
Happy birthday, Tootsie’s, and here’s to another 50 or so more years of making great memories!
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