We celebrate the colourful careers of Hank Williams Jr, George Strait and Alan Jackson on Nu Country TV this Wednesday - December 14 - at 10 pm on C 31.

West Virginia born guitar slinger Brad Paisley celebrates a brace of his heroes on his video for recent hit This Is Country Music.

And expatriate Alabama born and latter day Queensland singer Kimber Sparks performs her tribute to Strait and Jackson on the show edited by Ashley Hall and hosted by one of his students Aila Serrano.

Wisconsin born singer Danny Gokey performs an evocative tribute to a detective killed in the line of duty.

Crystal Shawanda also debuts with a video of a recent hit on a show that is repeated Tuesday at 2 a.m.

Southern duo Steel Magnolia and Novocastrian Catherine Britt perform videos of songs of regret about the night before.


Brad Paisley performs in a concert video for the title track of his ninth album This Is Country Music.

Paisley, 39, pays homage to Hank Williams Jr and Texan star Miranda Lambert.

The father of two sons Huck, 4, and Jasper, 2, wrote 12 of the album 15 songs.

It features guest spots from Don Henley, Marty Stuart, Sheryl Crow, Carl Jackson and Clint Eastwood.

The western-flavoured instrumental Eastwood features the famed actor-director Clint whistling.

Blake Shelton guests on Don't Drink the Water and Carrie Underwood on Remind Me.

Brad, who plans to tour Australia, and Carrie who toured here earlier this year, host the 45th CMA Awards in Nashville on November 9.

The album also produced Paisley's 19th #1 hit Old Alabama penned with Chris DuBois, Dave Turnbull and Alabama singer Randy Owen.

"Before I go thinking 19 number ones is something, it's humbling to realise Alabama now has 43," said Brad whose actress wife Kimberley Williams-Paisley has cameos in some of his videos.

"I'm so proud to have been on one."

Old Alabama features the group and sampled lines from early '80s chart topper Mountain Music.

"I love that country music is brave and it's brave in some ways pop music doesn't understand," he says.

"It doesn't look for the metaphorical poetic way to gloss over something. It goes for the jugular."

Paisley grew up in Glendale, West Virginia, where he developed guitar and writing skills.

After a two-year stint at West Liberty University in Wheeling he won an ASCAP scholarship to Belmont University, Nashville, and graduated with a Bachelor of Music Business.

He met his producer Frank Rogers and writing partners Kelly Lovelace and Chris Dubois at Belmont before he signed to EMI Publishing and wrote hits for David Ball and David Kersch.

Paisley has also written a book, The Diary of a Player, about his musical heroes and influences with Rolling Stone contributing editor David Wild. The book details his favourite guitarists from a variety of genres but is also "the very personal story of how Paisley became who he is today."

CLICK HERE for a Paisley feature in the Diary on December 15, 2008.


Kimber Sparks revives her video for Strait & Jackson - her tribute to Murder On Music Row singers George Strait & Alan Jackson.

Bill Chambers produced her CD It's Her Turn that includes a duet with late country icon Vern Gosdin on Chiselled In Stone.

Kimber earned her stripes as a bull riding MC and barmaid at the Great Western Hotel in Rockhampton.

She mixed MBA studies with bar duties at the pub once owned by Lee Kernaghan.

The singer, living on the Gold Coast, cut debut solo disc It's Her Turn under tutelage of producer Bill Chambers.

It produced another video for Movin' On.

The Bachelor of Business and Marketing enjoyed return tours of the U.S. with gigs in hometown Cordova, Alabama, then Burnsville, Mississippi.

She also played famed Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, Nashville - a venue she visited with Gosdin - and The Water Hole - her Uncle Joe's honky-tonk in Marlin, Texas.

Kimber tours with fellow country artist Dallas Steele, who plays leading man in Movin' On, and her guitarist Dave McKeowen.

CLICK HERE for a Sparks review in the Diary on February 9, 2009.


Former truckie Danny Gokey debuts on Nu Country with a power ballad about a detective shot dead in combat and death of his own wife.

The American Idol Series Eight finalist and choir director found solace in his music.

His wife Sophia died of heart disease shortly before he released this video for I Will Not Say Goodbye from his debut album My Best Days.

The song, written by Lari White, Chuck Cannon and Vicky McGehee, is a poignant ballad that Gokey, now 31, says he had to record.

"That song just totally represents what I felt when my wife passed away," says Gokey, who launched a charitable foundation, Sophia's Heart, in his wife's memory.

"Sophia's Heart got started because I wanted to keep her legacy alive."

Gokey, fifth of six children, traces his musical roots to the church.

While working in the music departments at two churches he logged hard days as a truckie.

"I drove an eighteen wheeler semi-truck, a big rig," he says. "I liked it actually. Was it what I wanted to settle with for the rest of my life? No, because music was where my passion was."

Sophie encouraged him to enter American Idol but a month before the audition, she died unexpectedly after what should have been a routine heart surgery.

It was her third operation for a congenital heart condition.

The couple, together for 12 years, were high school sweethearts and Danny was devastated.

"Music was the key place where I would go, and I would let the sorrow come out, let the tears just roll," says Gokey who appears in TV movie Truth Be Told.

"Some music I would listen to had a determination in it, and I resolved that this is not going to be the thing that destroys me for the rest of my life. It can be turned into a building block, and I can become a better person for it. Music brought healing. That's how I got through and still get through it today."

Further info - www.dannygokey.com


Canadian chanteuse Crystal Shawanda performs a poignant video for her paternal womb to the tomb song You Can Let Go.

It's the story of a father who won't let go of his daughter.

Shawanda reversed the character's roles on his deathbed in the song from her debut 2008 album Dawn Of A New Day.

The Ontario born Native American singer was featured in a six part CMT series Crystal: Living The Dream.

Shawanda is a First Nations member of the Ojibwe band.

Her surname translates to Dawn of a New Day.

She grew up on a Native American reservation called Wikwemikong on Canada's Manitoulin Island.

Crystal wrote her first song at the age of nine and cites Loretta Lynn as her childhood hero.

Her father was a truck driver whose route led him from Michigan to Nashville.

Crystal has since released a Christmas disc I'll Be Home For Christmas - a third album Just Like You is set for release this year.

Further info - www.crystalshawanda.co


Steel Magnolia return to Nu Country with Last Night Again - companion song of Catherine Britt's What I Did Last Night.

Joshua Scott Jones dropped the ball in the Grease style video, filmed in a Nashville bowling alley as partner Meghan Linsey scored a strike in one.

Jones has since proposed to Linsey.

"I'd like to do it next year on my birthday July 10," he revealed.

But Meghan isn't sure about her beloved's date of choice.

"We were thinking about it," she says.

"See he just thinks July 10 because of his birthday and I'm going, 'Well, do you know if it's a Saturday? Is it a Tuesday?' He doesn't think about those things."

The future groom had time to think about such things - he gave Meghan his great-grandmother's antique engagement ring prior to winning CMT TV show Can You Duet? in 2009.

Steel Magnolia emerged from the same TV show as expat Australians O'Shea and Joey & Rory.

Texas born, Illinois raised Jones and Louisiana lass Lindsay toiled for five years as a duo after meeting at a Nashville karaoke bar.

They wrote seven of 12 tracks on their self-titled debut, produced by Dan Huff, and released on Taylor Swift's label Big Machine.

The last track, Glass Houses, is a song Josh, 29, penned solo.

"It could be something that Merle Haggard would sing, which is very cool," Josh a former radio station sales rep, says of the classic-sounding tune.

"We were very glad that that song got a chance to be on the record."

They also cut historic Keith Urban & The Ranch song Homespun Love.

"That was actually brought to us by Big Machine VP of A&R Allison Jones," says Josh.

"We didn't know we had a void on the record until we recorded that song and realised we needed some of that boogie woogie in there and it's so cool that Keith Urban wrote it."

Though it wasn't written as a duet, Steel Magnolia put their stamp on it. "Lyrically when you first hear it you don't really think that it could be a duet," says Meghan, now 26 and a former karaoke bar manager.

"But we put our spin on it. It is so sassy. It's one of my favourite tracks on the record. It's one that you can jam out in the car to."

Further info - www.myspace.com/steelmagnoliamusic


Novocastrian Catherine Britt returns to Nu Country in a video of wasted days and nights during her six years in Nashville.

What I Did Last Night is an autobiographical ballad of regret - one of nine songs she wrote on third album Little Wildflowers.

Grammy-nominated producer Brett Beavers produced that disc with guest contributors Keith Urban, Tommy Emmanuel and Buddy Miller.

Britt, daughter of a psychological counsellor Steve and mother Sue, tours Victoria in August with James Blundell to promote her fourth album.

The self-titled ABC release produced by Bill Chambers and son in law Shane Nicholson at Sing-Sing Studio in Richmond, features 14 of her originals.

Catherine toured overseas with Alan Jackson and Brooks & Dunn in her sojourn in Nashville.

The singer, a young veteran at 25, headlined the 10th Wandong Country Music Festival in March.

We have a new video clip for her single I Want You Back later in the series and her CD prizes below.

CLICK HERE for a Britt feature in the Diary on May 2, 2010.


There's great news for fans of Georgian born superstar Alan Jackson and quadruple CMA Award winning Texan star Miranda Lambert.

We have their latest CDS as prizes for viewers who renew Nu Country TV memberships or become members.

Sony-BMG promotions chief Emma Smith also gave us Miranda's new DVD - Revolution: Live By Candlelight.

Alan's 34 Number Ones features his biggest hits including his duet with Zac Brown Band - As She's Walking Away.

The bonus tracks also include his cut of the late June Carter Cash-Merle Kilgore written Johnny Cash hit Ring Of Fire and rare track Look At Me.

Emma also donated Miranda's huge selling 4th CD Revolution.

And as a bonus there is Miranda's new DVD featuring rare acoustic cuts of six songs White Liar, The House That Built Me, Love Song, Heart Like Mine, Love Is Looking At You and Rolling Stones country classic Dead Flowers.


Expatriate Australasian superstar Keith Urban is recovering from throat surgery.

To celebrate, Keith's record company EMI-Capitol has great news for Nu Country TV viewers.

Promotions ace Bianca O'Neill donated autographed copies of his huge selling ninth album Closer To You.

She also donated new compilation The Very Best Of Slim Dusty and CMAA Winners - 2011.

All you have to do to win Jackson, Lambert, Urban and Dusty CDS or the Lambert DVD is become a member of Nu Country or renew membership.

It costs just $20.

Please send a cheque or money order made out to Nu Country Music to us at P O Box 625 - Northcote - 3070.

We also now have electronic banking for membership payment and renewal.

But email us first at music@nucountry.com.au as stocks are limited.

Other prizes on offer include -

Eric Church - Chief
Luke Bryan - Tailgates & Tanlines.
Taylor Swift - 2ND CD Fearless.
Tim McGraw Southern Voice Tour CD with 11-bonus video clips.
Felicity - Landing Lights
Air Supply singer Russell Hitchcock - Tennessee - The Nashville Sessions CD and DVD
Slim Dusty Sittin' On 80 Boxed Set
The Very Best Of Slim Dusty
Catherine Britt - Little Wildflowers.
CMAA Winners 2011 and other c
ompilation CDS.

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