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Following a re organizational meeting of the Music Row Administrators Group, SHIRLEY HUTCHINS announces that MRAG will be joining forces with the Publishers Administration Network (PAN).  

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A couple of years back, BILL MAYNE, then, as now, the Country Radio Broadcasters, executive director, was the featured speaker at an industry group meeting.  I was among the group members attending.

I listened patiently as Bill spoke, inviting everyone in the room to be part of the Country Radio Seminars, painting a far more professional  picture than that which I had observed.  Mayne also expressed his desire that there be more coverage of the CRS.

Not wishing to embarrass Bill in front of the group during the Q-A session following his remarks, I took Mayne aside and told Bill only of  (the late) JEFF WALKER's overreach of authority, as it related to me.   This was apparent not only by Walker refusing me press credentials after a falling out with him that occurred after Walker knowingly gave me dishonest answers (in response to questions about one his publicity clients) that I went on to report in my column, retracting those statements once it became apparent Jeff lied to me.

Walker refused to take responsibility for his actions and so I wasn't surprised when, following a call for those interested in joining the CRB executive board of directors, a board historically lacking in gender parity, I was repeatedly (albeit, admittedly, courteously) turned down.

Mayne assured me he would make the necessary changes and that I would be welcome at forthcoming CRS conventions.

There's not only been no indication of that LORIE LIEBIG has done some excellent reporting indicating that my experience is not unique.  Liebig calls CRS 2018 "an opportunity missed,"  referencing Rolling Stone's devastating country radio expos
é and the fact that WTVF-TV reporter JESSE KNUTSON, scheduled to interview Bill Mayne about "sexual harassment and misconduct" on day one of the seminar, learned that the interview was off and his media credentials were revoked, once Knutson disclosed the subject of the agreed to interview.

CRS' actions were explained by "safety concerns about local media covering the private event."

Jesse's interview was back on once he reported what had happened.  Mayne's defense that CRS won't "tolerate... any sexual misconduct, any improper behavior" and that he is unaware any police reports, complaints filed with the hotel or with the CRS office" rings hollow.

He doesn't need to be reminded of my conversation with him.  I repeated it to Rolling Stone Country and it is available to anyone who reads either this Report or the RS comments section.            

Bill Mayne knows better.  Women can't report first hand about what goes on at events from which they are effectively banned.  

Bill Mayne owes Jesse an apology and he owes me one as well.

I'd settle for a long overdue board appointment.  I won't hold my breath but I do hope to eat crow.
                                   
 


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WILLIE NELSON will be surprised to find his name in JEFF FAGER's new book, 50 Years of 60 Minutes.    

Fager relates an anecdote about a pitch meeting between show contributor MIKE WALLACE and producer JOSH HOWARD. Though the investigative reporter occasionally did soft, celebrity pieces, Howard expressed curiosity as to why Wallace wanted to do a feature on the Red-Headed Stranger.  

Perhaps Josh should have listened more carefully:  According to Jeff, Mike reacted in disgust:  "Willie Nelson?
   

"WINNIE and NELSON as in MANDELA
.. Heard of them?"

"Excuse me, I didn't realize I had wandered into the toy department.  Good luck with your next career move."



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Due, no doubt, to outrage from Report readers (see below) MIKE HUCKABEE made amends to T.G. SHEPPARD on the February 3, 2018 edition of HUCKABEE by reminding the audience of T.G.'s accomplishments as a hit recording artist and noting that Sheppard was that evening's guest announcer for the program.

As the program's guest announcer, T.G. couldn't very well introduce himself and perhaps that was the thinking behind Sheppard's not performing during the show, leaving the singing to others.  This was the latest in a program full of surprises, not the least of which is the host's failure to honor his promise during the show's premiere to feature those who disagree with him.  Considering the program's network affiliation, the fact that the majority of featured entertainers choose to at least appear to be apolitical (however outspoken they are when they parrot the religious "party line"), the show's difficulty in attracting major sponsors and the unchallenging questions asked of the host during the audience Q-A segment, perhaps the expressed welcoming of divergent viewpoints is easier said than done.

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BÉLA FLECK  has invited TONY TRISCHKA, KRISTIN SCOTT BENSON, MIKE MUNFORD and STEVE COOLEY to join him as Fleck presents the inaugural Blue Ridge Banjo Camp at Brevard Music Center August 15- 19, 2018.  

Fleck will become a first-time instructor, teaching intermediate and advanced students during the three days and four nights of instructional focus on the three distinct styles of banjo-playing: SCRUGGS, melodic and single string.   In order to tailor classes to the students, applicants will be asked to submit an audition video, which they may do without charge.    Due to outrage from Report readers

Interested?  Learn more about the banjo immersion experience here.  Download an application here.

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Attention Preservationists:  Make your vote count!

Join the effort to restore an acetate transcription disc of a live STANLEY BROTHERS show- unheard for over 60 years and currently in the care of the Birthplace of Country Music.  

The Virginia Museum Association will award the project a restoration grant if it receives enough votes.

Cast yours here.  

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From the fame is fleeting department: Fans of HUCKABEE were aghast when genial host MIKE HUCKABEE did not so much as mention the presence of  KELLY LANG and T.G. SHEPPARD in the TV show's studio audience.  As cameras panned the crowd throughout, the duo were easy to spot, having braved single-digit temperature, black ice and otherwise hazardous winter weather conditions to show their support.


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MARY ANN KAYLOR GRIFFITHS is first with the news that platinum-selling SISTER HAZEL makes its Grand Ole Opry debut on January 26, 2018 following the January 12, 2018 release of its single Roll On Bye.  

The band hosts its 18th year of the (sold out) Rock Boat on January 30, 2018. 

Copies of the guys' EP Water (to be released February 9, 2018) are available for pre-order here.  Look for a review of Water here soon.


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Thanks to ASHLEY JOB for inviting me to KALIE SHORR's January 25, 2018 Awake EP Launch Party at The Back Corner, to DREW BLAKELEY for placing yours truly on the "media/industry VIP list" for KAYLA ADAMS' January 24, 2018 invitation-only showcase at 12th & Porter and to SAMANTHA JOHNSON for her "exclusive invite" to join LORE Entertainment newcomer KELBY COSTNER in performance at The Back Corner on January 23, 2018.    

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Are you a "songwriter" (page 38, upper right-hand corner) looking for an ear? 

If so, join the Bellevue Library's songwriters group on Saturday, January 20, 2018 at 11 a.m.

"Bring your song, lyric sheets and a device to play your MP3(s) for the group.

"Works in progress or final demos are welcome."

More information available via email.


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Thanks to JED HILLEY for inviting me to "Riffs on the Rails with MARY GAUTIER" January 18, 2018 at Union Station Hotel.  The listening party will feature songs from Mary's upcoming album, Rifles & Rosary Beads.

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Will ukuleles soon be gaining traction on Music Row?

Find out on during an hour of fun on Sunday afternoon, January 14, 2018 when "It's ukulele jam time!" at the Bellevue Library, courtesy of a partnership between the Ukulele Collective of Tennessee and the Nashville Ukulele Society

 Library patrons and guests are encouraged "bring your uke" or check one out from the library.

"No experience required.  Jam leaders will show you what you need to know to get started. 

"We'll strum easy tunes for newbies and trickier ones for experienced players."

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The latest on the KIRT WEBSTER PR debacle is that on January 6, 2018 AUSTIN RICK advised those interested to "watch the national headlines this coming week for more insight into my recent endeavors- that's all I can say for the time being.

"I'm also gearing up to take part in a cable television production regarding the evil Kirt Webster has visited on so many.  This wouldn't be a little 'blip' per se, but rather a feature.  

"I may also have legal news to share with you soon, so please stay tuned."


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Column's thanks to MEGAN CREEN and  KASEY HARTMAN for extending press credential to cover the red carpet and Derby Prelude Party reception kicking off the Sixth-Annual Star-Studded Unbridled Eve Gala January 4, 2018 at the Bardot at Avalon Hollywood in Los Angeles.

"Derby Does Hollywood" cocktail party, the "thoroughbred of parties," is the kickoff to the world-famous Kentucky Derby.  The exclusive event "introduces guests to the Unbridled Eve Derby Gala held in Louisville, Kentucky on Derby Eve.  A limited number of tickets are available for purchase with with a $100 donation to the Unbridled Charitable Foundation, Inc."

Details available by calling (502) 894-9768 or by email.  



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The Country Music Foundation begins 2018 with a shuffled deck, having re-elected STEVE TURNER to a 10th term as Hall of Fame & Museum's chairman while  simultaneously re-electing VINCE GILL to a 16th consecutive term as president.

These positions are mainly ceremonial.  The full CMF Board only meets quarterly.

However, in an industry finally forced to face its abuses in a climate where there remains blame aplenty inflicted on those who are suddenly coming forward, the CMF's male-dominated board continues to function with too much power concentrated in too few hands.

The historical lack of oversight has produced abuses I have written about ( http://stacyharris.com/adultery.html http://stacyharris.com/iveykyle.html , http://stacyharris.com/ronnie.html , and http://stacyharris.com/horsnell.html ), as well as those I have yet to write about in such detail.  These will eventually have the traction that toppled KIRT WEBSTER PR

Meanwhile, the CMF Board will continue to walk in lockstep, and to reap the consequences of exclusion, until there is a groundswell of support for the voices of dissent.

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A Los Angeles-based writer (whose name I do not know) is reportedly scouting Nashville sources for a book about GLEN SHERLEY.  If my fellow author wants to contact me, I have a photo and a reminiscence that might be of interest. 


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