Let's not kid ourselves. Pittsburgh is hardly the mecca of country/bluegrass music, but Slim Forsythe is hoping to put it on the map. And on your TV.
The white-suited singer-songwriter, who started out here doing a Hank Williams tribute, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to produce and star in a country music variety television show called “Live from Nied’s Hotel,” which is Mr. Forsythe’s home base (and home) in Lawrenceville.
He hopes to raise $10,000 to produce a pilot episode, in conjunction with sound engineer Dino DiStefano, who worked on WQED TV’s “Live from Studio A” series and the Grammy-winning “Count Basie Orchestra with the New York Voices” album recorded at the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild.
Forsythe would host the show, with The Beagle Brothers (“the Architects of the Bloomfield Sound”) as the house band. The pilot’s special guest star would be Pittsburgh singer Molly Alphabet. “Live From Nied’s Hotel” would continue to showcase local and nationally touring acts.
“The show would bring you lots of classic country music... Western swing, honky tonk, mountain gospel, bluegrass, even a little rockabilly thrown in now and then,” Forsythe notes in the pitch for the Kickstarter, which runs through June 7 at www.kickstarter.com/projects/1504894374/country-music-tv-show-live-from-nieds-hotel
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Jack White will bring his solo band to Pittsburgh for the first time on July 27 for a show at Stage AE Outdoors.
Tickets ($45) go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday at all Ticketmaster locations, charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000 or online at www.ticketmaster.com.
The singer-songwriter-guitarist has played here several times as a member of the White Stripes and The Raconteurs, but did not stop here on the tour supporting his highly acclaimed 2012 solo debut, "Blunderbuss." That tour featured two different bands -- one all male (The Buzzards) and one all female (The Peacocks) -- that varied from night to night.
The Detroit native, now in based in Nashville where he runs his own label, "Third Man Records," will release his second solo album, "Lazaretto." on June 10. Last week he announced that he will attempt to set a Guinness world record for "the world's fastest-released record" by recording and releasing the album's title track on the same day.
Benjamin Booker opens on the Pittsburgh date.
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George Strait took Entertainer of the Year (by a fan vote) Sunday night at the 49th ANNUAL ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS in Las Vegas.
Strait doesn’t have a show booked here, but five of the other big winners are on their way to Pittsburgh this summer.
Jason Aldean, who won Male Vocalist of the Year, his second consecutive win in this category, will be at PNC Park on July 26. Florida Georgia Line, winner for Vocal Duo of the Year, is on that Aldean bill, as is Lee Brice (Song of the Year for “I Drive Your Truck”).
Miranda Lambert, who won a record fifth consecutive year as Female Vocalist of the Year, is set to open for Luke Bryan at Heinz Field on June 21.
Tim McGraw, Video of the Year winner for “Highway Don’t Care,” plays the First Niagara Pavilion on June 6.
Here is the list of winners
Entertainer of the Year
Male Vocalist of the year
Female Vocalist of the year
Vocal Duo of the year
Florida Georgia Line
Vocal Group of the year
The Band Perry
NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY KOHL’S
ALBUM OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
Same Trailer Different Park – Kacey Musgraves
Producers: Luke Laird, Shane McAnally, Kacey Musgraves
Record Label: Mercury Records
Single Record of the Year [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]
Mama’s Broken Heart – Miranda Lambert
Producers: Chuck Ainlay, Frank Liddell, Glenn Worf
Record Label: RCA Nashville
Song of the Year [Awarded to Songwriter(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s)]
I Drive Your Truck – Lee Brice
Songwriters: Jessi Alexander, Connie Harrington, Jimmy Yeary
Publishers: Beattyville Music (BMI), EMI Blackwood Music, Inc. (BMI), Great Day At This Music (BMI), Happy Tears Music (ASCAP), Vistaville Music (ASCAP), Watch This Girl Publishing (BMI)
Video of the Year [Awarded to Producer(s)/Director(s)/Artist(s)] *(Off Camera Award)
Highway Don’t Care – Tim McGraw Featuring Taylor Swift & Keith Urban
Producers: Tameron Hedge, Chandra LaPlume
Director: Shane Drake
Vocal Event of the Year [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]*(Off Camera Award)
We Were Us – Keith Urban And Miranda Lambert
Producers: Nathan Chapman, Keith Urban
Record Labels: Capitol Records Nashville, Hit Red Records, RCA Nashville
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