Zach’s (Unfiltered) CMAs Review

music musings, beaverdamusa.comGoing in a little different direction with this blog.  While I consider myself a rocker at heart, living in Nashville, I can’t help but be exposed to the country music industry.  I actually like some of the music that is labeled as country today.

Besides snarling traffic all day in downtown, the CMA awards show is a chance for Nashville to shine and an opportunity for this blogger to share his take on the show.  I taped (not really, I DVR’ed) the show and started watching the recording about an hour after the actual show started.  This gave me the opportunity to skip those acts I abhor and those pesky commercials.  I watched it with my lovely bride, so here are my random thoughts (and occasional wife quotes) on the 49th annual CMA awards:

  • Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood host the show and did an opening skit about their Star Wars skit being cancelled.  It was kind of corny, but with Carrie dressed up as Princess Leia, Paisley had the line of the night with “nice buns”.
  • John Mellencamp and Keith Urban performed Mellencamp’s Little Pink Houses.  First, what did Mellencamp do to his hair?  Obviously, Urban won the hair contest.  Urban than sang what I guess is one of his new songs.  It has a line in it with the words “I learned all I know from John Cougar, John Deere, and John 3:16.”  Of course, Mellencamp hates the old John Cougar name.  First zinger from the wife comes from the kitchen during Urban’s song – “Who’s that woman singing?”
  • Paisley and Underwood come back with a parody song where nothing is safe.  Loved the dig on Blake Shelton/Miranda divorce and Ashley Madison reference.  Best line though was Paisley referencing Justin Timberlake and indicating his favorite JT song was a Christmas song about a box.  [If you don’t get it, Google “Timberlake, box”, but not on a company PC].
  • Little Big Town hit it big with their song Girl Crush winning a couple of awards.  The song was a popular, politically correct choice.
  • Paisley paid tribute to his idol Little Jimmy Dickens at one point.  Being the jokster, Paisley indicated that LJD wanted to leave the audience laughing when he went; so Paisley pulled out an urn about the size of a cigarette lighter.
  • Kenny Chesney seems like the proverbial “always a bridesmaid” nominee.  He was nominated for several awards, but took nothing home.  During his performance, it was good to see Kingston Springs’ own Jon Conley playing the acoustic.
  • Chris Stapleton won best new artist and a couple of other awards.  He definitely can’t be considered pretty boy country with that hair and beard.  Duck Dynasty guys are probably envious!  He seemed to be the popular choice this year.  I will admit the couple of numbers he did with Justin Timberlake were entertaining.  While I am not a large JT fan, you can’t deny the guy is a great entertainer.
  • Carrie underwood sang a song.  Couldn’t tell you what it was.  I was thinking “how does she get those boots/leggings on?”  My dear wife continued her admiration of her legs with the line “Look, there’s nothing jiggling on her legs!”  I will just leave it at that.
  • Florida-Georgia Line came on and sang.  Couldn’t find the fast forward quick enough.
  • During the Duo of the Year nominees clip, there was one called Dan + Shay.  It had them in dress clothes running in a creek like they were chasing each other.  Don’t know what they were doing.
  • Eric Church must have pink eye.  Always has the shades on.  Fast Forward worthy.
  • Thomas Rhett and Fall Out Boy played a couple of songs.  Don’t know either one.  They did have some very limber girls dancing/gyrating with them though.  The sweet wife (who knew a FOB song) chimed in on the limber girls with “there’s no way those girls can have bras on under those outfits”
  • My girl Miranda sang and won Female Artist of the Year.  She seemed down.  Great line in her acceptance speech when she said she needs a bright spot this year.
  • Kacey Musgraves – where’s her pants?
  • Hall & Oates, eh I mean Brooks & Dunn sang with Reba.  Reba still has it & I don’t know if B&D ever did. Looks like the tall one (always get them confused) might have had the Liberace done to his face.  I don’t think he blinked.
  • By this point in the show, I was tired and nodding off, so I saw that Male Vocalist went to the popular choice of Chris Stapleton and Luke Bryan won Entertainer of the Year.  Yawn.

I know this ran long, but the show did as well.  Even if you aren’t a country fan, the show gives you a little entertainment.

Until next time…


Tayler Lynch Jumps From TV to Your Radio

tayler coverSometimes, the simplest of things make the biggest change.

Tayler Lynch was a teenager with a budding television acting career already under his belt when he heard a song that inspired him enough to change career paths.

“I heard Brad Paisley’s ‘Letter to Me’ on the radio one day,” he said. “And, it hit me right then, and I was like, ‘I want to do this. I want to affect people the way that song just affected me.’”

edited for blog interview2Three album releases later, the young songwriter and vocalist from Louisville, Ky., is making noise in Music City and beyond. He sat down and talked to us recently about his career, including “Pieces of Me,” his latest album project.

“Pieces of Me” features 10 songs, the majority of which Tayler wrote solo, bucking the Nashville trend of co-writing. “I kind of knew what I wanted to do (on the album), and I really didn’t know how to explain what I wanted to do,” he said. “So I thought, ‘you know what I’ll just do it. I’ll do it myself to see what happens.’ And, I also wanted to see if I could do it myself. I’d done a lot of co-writing and I wanted to give it a shot I wanted to see how good of a writer I really was on my own right and see if I could really do this on my own.”

He added, “I think there’s probably 2 or 3 songs I did a co-write on. The rest of them I wrote by myself, so a lot of the influences and the ideas and things like that came from different artists that I listen to, and really just what sounded good to me, what felt right to me.

“A lot of the songs came from me sitting around playing my guitar and experimenting with chord structure and things like that,” Tayler said. “I would play a couple of chords, and they sounded really good together, and I was like, ‘You know what, I’m going to build a song around that,’ and then the idea for the actual lyric would hit me and it just kind of went together really well.”

If you haven’t heard Tayler’s music yet, you certainly will. And chances are good you have seen him on television. Even before he was in high school, Tayler had built a solid acting resume, including appearances on Grey’s AnatomyEverybody Hates ChrisDesperate Housewives and ER.

edited for blog interview3“I actually started out in the entertainment business as an actor, probably from the time I was in the third grade until right before my freshman year in high school,” Tayler said. “I would travel – my mom and I – back and forth to LA.”

His acting career, however, took a backseat when Tayler entered high school. “Before I started high school, I was told by the school that I needed to make a decision,” he explained. “Did I want to go to school, or did I want to travel back and forth to LA? Because they weren’t willing to work with me the same way my elementary school and middle school did.”

He said, “I decided that I wanted to have the normal high school career and experience all the things that come along with that. In doing so, I realized I really have a love and a passion for music that I hadn’t fully vetted out, because I had been doing acting; and, so I guess it kind of worked out in the long run.”

Acting’s loss became music’s gain. “Without being able to travel, I had to find something else to occupy my time with. And, I was like ‘I can do this music thing, and I’m actually passionate about this’ – and passionate in a way I really didn’t think I was at first.”

Tayler said he would give himself an A-minus for his writing on the “Pieces of Me” record. “While I am proud of it, and I do think I did really good work – and other people think I did really good work – I don’t want to give myself a perfect grade because there’s always room for improvement,” he said.

His favorite song on the album is “When He Gave Me You,” Tayler said. “I wrote that song for my parents, so it’s kind of got a special place in my heart, and between the three of us.”

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The Nashville music industry is taking note of Tayler, as well. For the past 2 years, he has been named an Emerging Artist at CMA Music Fest. And, he was recently the featured Artist of the Month at the “Welcome to Nashville” showcase at the legendary Silver Dollar Saloon. Back in his hometown, he has performed the National Anthem at several events at The University of Louisville, the latest being at the KFC Yum Center to more than 10,000 people. 

Tayler has also sung at  several breast cancer awareness events for the university. His grandmother is a 2-year survivor, and he lost two other grandparents to cancer. He said singing at events like these is him doing his part to help find a cure.

When he is touring, Tayler said playing clubs and festivals are his favorite venues, “just because people who are there, especially clubs, they’re there because there’s music. They’re there to hear somebody play.

“It’s a struggle sometimes when you go someplace where people aren’t necessarily expecting for there to be a band or there be music, and then you spend part of the time playing trying to get people warmed up to you, but if you’re at a club but you’re at a festival it’s kind of a given. You can jump right in,” he said.

Though he occasionally performs solo, he mostly fronts the Tayler Lynch Band. About his show, he quipped, “Think vintage Garth Brooks type of energy, and the hip shaking of Luke Bryan.”

He called Brooks, “a huge influence. He and George Strait are two of my biggest influences. In 5 years, I’m hoping to be signed to a label. I’m hoping to either probably to be an opening act for somebody. Hopefully now that Garth’s back on the road he might need me,” Tayler laughed.

Tayler hits Nashville at least once a month, usually to perform. He is studying music business online at the Berklee College of Music. ” I want to know as much about the business as I can,” he said. “For one it interests me. And, two, I don’t want to get screwed. I want to know what some record exec is telling me is the right thing.”

No! I Said ‘Insert Your PIN, your PIN!’

Hey, Buddy, You Need to Learn
to Show that ATM Some Respect

dam thoughts, barry currin, beaverdamusa.comDid you see the story about the man who reportedly walked into a bar, pulled down his pants thereby exposing himself, and tried to have sexual intercourse with an ATM?

It sounds like a setup to the world’s worst joke, but unfortunately it’s not.

The Tennessean reported the story, which went on to quote police reports which said employees then escorted him outside (with great caution, I presume). At that point, he exposed himself again and tried to do the same thing to a wooden picnic table.

Talk about a tree hugger. (Now, that may be the world’s worst joke. Our staff is checking.) I wonder if the juke box was playing the old song, “Don’t the Girls All Get Prettier at Closing Time?” I’m mainly afraid the pool table will find out, and you know how she can be when she gets jealous.

On a serious note, here. Hats off to the bar for having an ATM. That’s pretty capitalistic. I’m sure it never had a transaction quite like that one, but at least it will have a story to tell the repairman when he gets there. (I have known ATM repairmen and know for a fact they talk to the machines.) I wonder how long it will take someone to muster up the nerve to look at the surveillance tape? I wouldn’t want that job.

Let’s not forget the poor picnic table. Second choice. Miss Congeniality. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. I thought it was funny that the police made sure to mention the table was wooden. Maybe she arranged for a strategically-placed splinter to teach this guy to dance with the one he brung next time.

And why was there a picnic table at the bar anyway? I’m sure glad a happy vacationing family wasn’t chomping on ham sandwiches. That would be a scene worthy of Clark Griswold.

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I don’t guess the jokes would ever end. Most of the ones I can think of get pretty gross in a hurry. I don’t know what would cause someone to do this. Well, yeah, I do. Alcohol — as in the Brad Paisley song of the same title which starts, “I can make anybody pretty.” Maybe the songwriters need to go back into the writing room and add a third verse to include romancing a money-spitting computer.

Yes, technology is changing the world we live in. They say in a few decades computers will be able to reason the same way the human brain does. Maybe this guy was just trying to use his spawn to speed up the process. Who knows, maybe in 9 months, the ATM will birth a little piggy bank that will grow up with the ability to give your checking account balance while breaking the county hot wing eating record. Finest Craft Beers from America’s Best Micro Breweries- 728x90 banner