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Marketing Conway Records' supposed steamy heterosexual hunk NATE GREEN, a formerly openly gay country singer known as JOSEY GREENWELL, to a straight audience of young women age 13-24: This is classic JEFF WALKER!

Walker has managed to unite both the gay and straight communities, each of which feels duped by the shenanigans rooted in native Kentuckian JOSEPH IGNATIUS GREENWELL, JR.'s ambition skewed to the point where he's apparently been living a double life!

Greenwell says he moved to Nashville at age 19.  Tribe patrons remember the guy they knew as Josey Greenwell from circa 2006 on as the winner of the Colgate Country Showdown and as a familiar face tending bar at the gay community watering hole while making appearances at PRIDE, modeling for gay magazines and landing a BNA Records contract in 2007.  

The record deal enabled Josey the opportunity to leave his job tending bar, but not before his Tribe buddies gave him a farewell party.
BNA supposedly booked Greenwell as an openly gay artist at such venues as a homosexual bar in upstate New York without knowing he was gay, dropping Josie, declining to release his debut album and dropping him from the label when they learned he was homosexual.

Undaunted, Greenwell released the album himself, landed a spot at the 2010 CMA Music Fest and toured with LITTLE BIG TOWN as its opening act.

But apparently Josey was not gaining enough traction or he possibly felt he had hit a plateau from which he could not rise without the scrutiny that would follow.

Tribe coworkers lost sight of Greenwell shortly thereafter when, at a publicity team's suggestion, Josie did what he felt he had to do to reach that next level of success:  Delete his Facebook profile, Wikipedia entry and openly gay social media profiles. 

Thus Josey Greenwell effectively disappeared and Nate Green was (re)born.

That is until July 23, 2014 when, following the spring 2014 release of Wild and Free, Walker's company issued a press release introducing Nate Green's "debut single and video" that by August, 2014 caught the attention of Estoy Bailando and  We Ho Confidential which disclosed the duplicity.

Asked to confirm the perpetuation of deceit to conceal that Greenwell and Green are one and the same and that the Green persona is a sham that has been busted,  Walker through his company declines comment.

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It's unfortunate personal adversity overshadows LYNN ANDERSON's contributions to the (crossover) popularity of country music.  Lynn is also the author of a children's book aimed at disabled children.  Krystal and the Chief, inspired by Lynn's love of quarter horses, teaches its readers about "the joy and freedom of horsemanship through therapeutic riding."

Media reaction to Lynn's September 11, 2014 arrest is quite interesting. Country-music media has reacted with the same timidity it always does when weighing the wish for a post-accident exclusive interview with Anderson and the obligation to report.  Thus, musicrow.com has completely ignored the story while cmt.com attributes its limited reporting to "staff reports."

Nashville's police department is apparently under no media pressure to issue a news release as it usually does when celebrities are (pardon the expression) under the gun. 

We know that Lynn has a November 20, 2014 court date, but before which judge?  (Yes, unfortunately it matters.).

I can't imagine the blow to her self-esteem Anderson undoubtedly experienced when, jailed during her second divorce, she lost two of her children during the early 1980s in a custody fight (though Lynn did prevail in related matters at the appellate level).     

No doubt that traumatic episode of her life led to her subsequent brushes with the law, but what follows are examples of celebrity justice- the breaks celebs receive in situations where we would not. 

Lynn appears to have sought refuge at the BETTY FORD Center because it was fashionable and only after several progressively worse incidents, any one of which should have been a wake up call. First, in October, 1988, Lynn was charged with malicious mischief after allegedly breaking into a waitress’ car, taking some of the server’s belongings and threatening her.  LINDA GAIL BOWERS agreed to drop the charges after receiving Lynn's letter of apology.
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Then, on December 2, 2004, after Denton, Texas police found Lynn passed out in a car she had parked on the side of a highway (after another driver alerted police that Anderson was weaving in-and-out of traffic) and charged her with drunk driving, Lynn was released on a $1,000 bail, serving no jail time.

Fifty-three days later, in an apparent cry for help, Lynn was charged with stealing a Harry Potter DVD from a Taos, New Mexico convenience store and felony battery on a policy officer Anderson allegedly struck on the arm as Lynn was being led to a patrol car. After resisting arrest and striking the officer, Lynn struck an agreement with the Taos DA’s office. The shoplifting charge was dismissed in exchange for Anderson agreeing to refrain from committing further offenses unbefitting what Lynn’s attorney described as a “loved and respected member of the Taos community."




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If you read credits (no, I'm the only one who does so, but it's enough to drive my less interested TV or movie theater companions batty) and remember The Nashville Network (TNN) in its glory days (as previously reported, its successor is effectively bankrupt), you'll remember DEBBIE MATHIS (now DEBBIE MATHIS WATTS).

Debbie, a former Opryland performer, was also a writer-producer for (ALLEN) REID- (MADY) LAND Productions, even managing to co-author (with Land) a Fandango trivia book.

By contrast, I tried to put my Radio-TV degree to good use, writing a script for ALAN NELSON and appearing on Country Notes' Insider's Viewpoint segment  (the back stories to which were at least as interesting as the opportunities) and almost became a writer and/or contestant on the network's Fandango game show (an equally "missed" opportunity due to my reaction to what I thought was a "suit"'s overreaction to an interview I did with the show's host, BILL ANDERSON shortly before the series debuted.

(Admittedly, Whispering Bill was an early mentor, but 25 years after the demise of the $64,000 Question even the lamest link to a perceived conflict-of-interest gave game show producers the jitters.)

With TNN's demise, my fellow published author and I went on to bigger and better things.  Debbie is an educator, a common core standards coach, a Socratic seminars specialist, a ghostwriter, an entrepreneur coach, a Nashville TV entertainment personality, a blogger,  an "edu-tainer,"  and a professional pianist, just to name a few of the projects that have kept her busy since our paths last crossed.

That's not all: the self-described "fan of Captain THOMAS RYMAN and what he did for Nashville, by building our Mother Church" is now the author of The Ryman Diaries: Reflections and Recipes.   With the help of Tennessee's State Library and Archives, Watts has been able to reconstruct "the love story of Captain Ryman and his wife, BETTIE, who has her own stories of having survived the Battle of Franklin, surviving typhoid fever, and, last but not least, survived having seven children and raising them on the Ryman riverboats."

Watts concludes that Mary Elizabeth Baugh (Bettie) Ryman "was a remarkable woman.  The best part is that my book is now being produced as a stage play right here in Nashville!... Not many people know about this yet... You could break the story in Nashville, if you are of a mind to do so."

Debbie graciously sent me an autographed a copy of her latest book and a publicity photo of the costumed lead characters in her stage play. 

Yes, Debbie Mathis Watts stars as Bettie.  ("Do you think we look like an antebellum couple?")

Indeed- and I love the "diary" format.  Can't wait to utilize some of the meal preparation hints and period recipes, too!

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From the emailbag: WAYNE SHUEY informs me of Report reader DICK SHUEY's passing in Holliday, Tennessee on August 16, 2014.

I have yet to meet Dick's son, Wayne and hadn't seen nor heard from Dick in years, but am  both saddened to learn of the outspoken "songwriter, musician, agent and DJ"'s death and upset by Wayne's characterization of the circumstances: "According to the coroner's report/death certificate" the "cause of death was pulmonary failure due to dehydration and malnutrition.

"The family would like to hear from anyone who could explain how this could have happened to Dick."


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I'll be on my annual search for IRLENE MANDRELL at the 31st annual Home Decorating & Remodeling Show September 5-7, 2014 at the Music City Center.

Irlene is, as always, the show's celebrity spokesperson.  When my schedule doesn't coordinate with Mandrell's booth time(s) it's catch as catch can.  This always makes for a (running) inside joke I'm always happy to explain to anyone who hasn't heard it.

In any event, this year's show promises to be another great opportunity to interact with exhibitors, compare prices and services, get some advice, learn some remodeling hints and to win prizes.

Further information may be found here.

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The September issue of the UK-based Country Music People contains a scathing letter to the editor from former CMP Editor CRAIG BAGULEY re: GARTH BROOKS' Ireland concert cancellations.

It reads, in part, "Well, Garth Brooks' ego has finally got the better of him.  With three three sell-out shows confirmed in Ireland, the promoter adds two more subject to license.  When that license is declined by the local council, Garth goes into a pre-pubescent sulk... Only a man with a  confused appreciation of his own worth could spout such preposterous drivel."

Baguley adds that while "No doubt there are some that blame the council," he holds Brooks responsible for Garth's inconveniencing fans traveling from afar who, though receiving ticket refunds, faced nonrefundable travel expense, thanks to "a superstar who believes himself too big to adhere to local regulations, and goes into a tizzy when he can't get his own way.

"Garth has previously declared great respect for this fans, but to me this action proves that vanity comes first."

While ultimately we are each responsible for our own decisions,  I have been close enough to him over the years to know that, as smart as Brooks is, he lives in a blissful bubble of unawareness that no one can penetrate, courtesy of Garth's chief advisor/handler, BOB DOYLE.

Doyle's defenders will point to aspects of Bob's character that suggest he should be immune from criticism.   I would agree were Doyle's behavior, as I have experienced it, consistent with the admirable aspects of his character.

To elaborate in this forum would be to repeat myself.  Suffice it to say that Brooks butters Doyle's bread and as long as that continues to be the case Garth will continue to be misunderstood.

 

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From the "What Would EDDY ARNOLD Think? Department: The subject line of a  Plowboy Records' email publicizing the release of THE GHOST WOLVES' new music video Shotgun Pistol Grip (AKA Grandma's a Rebel) reads "Latest in Ass-Kickin' Genre-Free Music."

Maybe I've just provided JOHNNY COUNTERFIT with a new impression and some new material for his act.  (I know, it's not an act...)



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If my review of P.F. SLOAN's memoir compels you to buy the book, while reading it you might be wondering if the references to BOBBY ROBERTS suggest that the veteran Nashville booking agent had an earlier career on the Left Coast as a former tap-dancer-turned-record label chief, musician and movie producer .  The answer is no, but, as the owner of the Nashville artists' agency (recently acquired by The Agency Group) explains, "STACY, you are correct.  That is a different Bobby Roberts but someone who has a good reputation in our industry.  I spoke to him a couple of times prior to his passing."

That was in 2004.  Meanwhile, as Sloan's travels have brought him to Music City, USA, Phil has written with Nashville's JON TIVEN, which has only added to the confusion among some. 




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The Hilton's downtown Nashville location was the place to be August 26, 2014 as it was the scene of a "press event," actually a "brief panel discussion, media Q & A, photo/video op" (coordinated by CLAIRE RATLIFF) with MERLE HAGGARD, SONNY CURTISHELEN CORNELIUS, JIMMY FORTUNE, T. GRAHAM BROWN and DAVID FRIZZELL.

All were on hand to announce their participation in a new project, spearheaded by Frizzell, culminating in  Nashville America Records' release of a 21-track collection titled The BUDDY HOLLY Country Tribute: Remember Me on September 7, 2014  (the day marking what would have been Holly's 78th birthday).

Album narrator David sent Merle eight songs from which to choose two.  I asked Haggard how he chose the title song and That'll Be the Day. "It's pretty simple," the Hag grinned.  "I did the only ones I knew."

When I asked Sonny if, were Buddy alive today, would Holly be as musically innovative now as he was before his death 55 years ago (and thus a viable recording artist even able to adapt to today's business model), or the subject of a tribute album as has been the fate of artists who are still with us but whose years of hits are well behind him, Curtis, the only person in the room who personally knew- indeed, worked with Holly, speculated that Buddy would still be a player.  Sonny explained that Buddy was into music publishing and using orchestral arrangements, for example, long before such expansion was even on the minds of his contemporary recording artists. 

Proceeds from the CD/DVD, which may be pre-ordered here, will go to the Buddy Holly Educational Foundation, a music education charitable organization founded by Buddy's widow, MARIA ELENA and PETER BRADLEY.

Both were represented at the event by board member PETER BRADLEY JR.


 

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From the emailbag (and used with permission), EDD HURT writes "I recently wrote what I believe is the first extensive article on the obscure '70s duo the COUNTRY CAVALEERS."

Hurt explains that he first became aware of the artists while watching reruns of The WILBURN BROTHERS Show.

"Perhaps this will give you a laugh or two, and provide a glimpse into the vanished world of '70s Nashville."

I'm pleased to share a link to Edd's work, "in the Aug-Sept. issue of JASON GROSS' online music magazine, Perfect Sound Forever."

While thanking Edd for sharing "another wonderful example of your excellent work," I told him that "I vaguely remember the Country Cavaleers, and recently saw them on The Wilburn Brothers Show you referenced (on Famnet), but didn't realize they had such illustrious "producers."

Reading Hurt's two-parter, I also learned that ALAN COFER will soon be adding to his credits, Wilburn Brothers' biographer.  DOYLE and TEDDY still have a strong fan base behind an effort to secure the duo's induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

Perhaps Cofer's book will give the Wilburns' fans the necessary momentum, in the form of a gentle reminder, to make that induction a reality.  Posthumous though it would be, such recognition is richly deserved and long overdue.





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TOMMY CASH needs a publicist!

The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza has compiled "25 Things: August Musical Tributes to PRESIDENT [JOHN] KENNEDY."  Museum officials realize that "This list is only a small collection of the many folk songs, classical compositions and compilations created as an ode to President Kennedy" but, even so, Cash's hit recording, Six White Horses, is a glaring omission.

Planning to be in Dallas?  Tour the museum anyway and, while you're at it, ask to listen to the January 27, 2014 interview I granted Associate Curator STEPHEN FAGIN, assisting Fagin with the museum's oral history project.




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