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Oct 12

Texas Antique Weekend, Y’all!

Texas Antique Week

(L-R) Jen Leitman with Blogger Ellen Foord and Supervising Producer Jen Moore

The Great American Country team headed to Texas Antique Weekend, which was held October 1-6. If you’ve never been to this incredibly large, awesome flea market-type event…it is well worth it! Go. Really. You’ll want to make plans for 2015 now.

Here’s the deal: Twice a year the huge empty fields around Round Top, Texas, welcome thousands of vendors with the most amazing finds ever. From jewelry and furniture to funky clothing and giant metal letters, there is so much to look through, it will make your head spin.

My DH (darling husband) would love it, as he’s the picker-type guy, but the event also makes for a perfect girls’ trip. If you go, you MUST stop in to see Great American Country stars, the Junk Gypsies. Their World Headquarters are located in Round Top, and you can shop for T-shirts, jewelry, home décor, you name it. The ladies are often around the store, which is a great celebrity sighting! They’re so nice and friendly!

Junk Gypsy Amie Sikes at Texas Antique Weekend

Amie Sikes, one of the stars of Great American Country’s Junk Gypsies, meets a fan at Texas Antique Weekend.

Peek Inside the Junk Gypsy Store »

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Posted at 9:00 am | Permalink
Sep 13

How to Go Camping in Style

It’s not officially fall yet, but with our new series Flippin’ RVs premiering this month, and pumpkin-flavored everything hitting grocery store shelves and coffee shops, we can’t help but get excited about all things fall. Cooler temperatures and crisp autumn air make the upcoming season perfect for camping and getting outdoors.

But what about those who aren’t so keen on the outdoors, especially at night? Well, if trekking into the wilderness or driving to a remote state park sounds daunting, consider your own backyard (or a friend’s or family member’s) as an alternative. It’s a good way to ease into camping, and you always have the option of sleeping in a real bed and taking a real, hot shower.

If you’re a fashionista, however, dressing for a camping trip (either in your backyard or at a campground) may prove challenging. Outdoor gear is less than flattering and definitely not cute. Let us offer you some inspiration. Below we’ve styled two different camping looks for the fashion-minded ladies. Just know that a lingering campfire smell on your clothes is inevitable.


Created on Polyvore

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Posted at 6:00 am | Permalink
Sep 4

5 Timeless Looks from the CMA Awards

In honor of the recently announced 2014 CMA nominations, let’s take a look back at some of the most timeless red carpet looks from years past. As we’ve said before, red carpet fashion is one of the best parts about award season. From Shania Twain’s early 2000s black mermaid gown to Jana Kramer’s moody skirt in 2014, check out our favorite country ladies on the red carpet.

Taylor Swift’s elegant gray tulle gown is anything but simple. Although it’s only been three years since she donned this look, we have a feeling it will still be a stunner in another 13 years.

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Posted at 1:50 pm | Permalink
Jul 31

The Junk Gypsies Collaborate With Pottery Barn Teen


This bed set has all the Junk Gypsy style elements.

If you thought the Junk Gypsies would slow down after opening the Wander Inn, you would be wrong. In fact, Amie and Jolie Sikes have been working harder than ever on their newest project, creating a home decor line for PBTeen. In tonight’s episode, the sisters take you through the entire process from creating prototypes to staging their designs for the catalog photo shoot.

Amie and Jolie decide to create a tufted denim headboard and repurpose an old guitar case as a jewelry shelf. They share other ideas, like a ship chandelier and glittered letters, with the Pottery Barn Teen reps, who visit the Junk Gypsy Headquarters to see the girls’ prototypes. Amie and Jolie emphasize the importance of glitter, feathers, dream catchers and fringe to the Junk Gypsy way of life. Finally, after three months of waiting, the Pottery Barn Teen team brings the finished products back to the Junk Gypsy Headquarters for the catalog shoot.

Share Your Comments Below for a Chance to Win a $50 Gift Card to
Pottery Barn Teen!

You could score one of five $50 gift certificates to Pottery Barn Teen to purchase something from the Junk Gypsy line. Just comment on this blog post which of the following items (pictured below) is your favorite, and you’ll be entered to win a gift certificate.
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Posted at 4:30 am | Permalink
Jul 30

Meet Emi Sunshine


Photo courtesy of Emi Sunshine/Hamilton Music.

Emi Sunshine isn’t your average 10-year-old.

She is not only a singing sensation, she’s an old soul. As she sips her decaf iced mocha latte and politely leaves her bedazzled iPhone sitting on the table, it’s difficult to picture her playing in a sandbox or having a pillow fight. Her demeanor is cool and collected, not to mention mature beyond her years.

While other kids her age are getting ready for their first day of school, Emi is preparing for her Grand Ole Opry debut, slated for August 5.

The Madisonville, Tenn. native grew up listening to classic Bluegrass and country singers. Emi defines her music as “Americana Gospel,” taking influences from Ricky Skaggs, Amy Grant, Emmylou Harris and Buddy Miller.

Her mom, Alisha Hamilton, introduced Emi to music at a mere four years old. They wrote simple songs together, then advanced to songs she could play on her ukelele or mandolin. Eventually, her dad, Randall Hamilton, and brother, Johnathon Letner, helped out teaching her chords and leads, respectively.

Besides her impressive vocals and “sunny” personality, Emi rocks a unique style all her own. She buys almost all of her clothes at thrift stores or flea markets and owns more cowboy boots than she can count. Vintage hats are wardrobe staples, as are bandanas and jeweled headbands. She shared photos of some of her favorite outfits with us.

Pictures of Emi Sunshine>>

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Posted at 2:09 pm | Permalink
Jun 30

Kenny Chesney and Jake Owen’s Songs Headed for Off-Broadway

Kenny Chesney

Kenny Chesney photo courtesy of Sony Music Nashville.

Kenny Chesney and Jake Owen are headed to the off-Broadway stage – at least their music is. Their chart-topping songs will be featured in a new musical, Somewhere With You, which debuts July 8 at the Pershing Square Signature Center in the Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre. Songwriter JT Harding, who co-wrote some of Kenny and Jake’s biggest hits, wrote the musical along with director Peter Zinn.

Somewhere With You is described as a “compellingly gritty, coming-of-age love story [that] centers around a new generation of Southerners growing up in the early 2000s, confronted by the methamphetamine epidemic, the war in Iraq, and other post-9/11 challenges in the rural South,” according to the New York Musical Theatre Festival.

JT Harding wrote the song the musical was named after, “Somewhere With You,” which Kenny Chesney took to No. 1 in 2011. He also penned Jake Owen’s “Alone With You” as well as Uncle Kracker’s “Smile.” The musical will run through July 13.


Posted at 6:32 pm | Permalink
May 23

Fan Fair X Announces Full Schedule of CMA Music Festival Events

X will mark the best daytime spot in Nashville during CMA Music FestivalJune 5-8 at AT&T U-verse’s Fan Fair X located at the new Music City Center. Fan Fair X will be open all four days of CMA Music Festival with doors opening at 9:00a each day. A full schedule of music, meet-and-greets and more is planned.

LeAnn Rimes will kick things off on Thursday, June 5, at the Artist of the Day. She will cut the ribbon, officially opening Fan Fair X. Following the ribbon cutting, she will perform and answer fan questions on the CMA Close Up Stage before heading over to sign autographs at CMA Central, CMA’s autograph hub in the heart of Fan Fair X.

CMA Close Up Stage

Each morning during the Festival, a different Artist of the Day will take to the CMA Close Up Stage to kick off the day’s events. Opening day features LeAnn Rimes discussing her new VH1 TV show that will be shown in the CMA Screening Room. Friday’s Artist of the Day will be Sara Evans, who will be joined by longtime video director Peter Zavadil to discuss her career and share an insider look at her video highlights. Craig Morgan will be Artist of the Day on Saturday, and Sunday’s Artist of the Day will be Lady Antebellum.

Kix Brooks will also make an appearance at CMA Close Up Stage. He will host his American Country Countdown radio program from Fan Fair X on Saturday, June 7 at 11:15a CT, where he will be joined by special guests. He will also donate a package from his Arrington Vineyards winery as part of the Keep the Music Playing Silent Auction in Fan Fair X, benefiting music education.

At noon on Thursday, June 5, Billy Ray Cyrus will preview his upcoming film, Like A Country Song, in the CMA Screening Room. Afterward, he and other cast members will head to the CMA Close Up Stage for a question and answer session. He will sign autographs on Saturday, June 7.   Continue Reading


Posted at 2:39 pm | Permalink
Apr 9

Kellie Pickler to Auction Off ACM Awards Jewelry


Kellie Pickler to Auction Off ACM Awards Jewelry

Kellie Pickler on the Red Carpet at the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards, Sunday, Apr. 6, 2014. Photo Credit: Getty Images/courtesy the Academy of Country Music.

Kellie Pickler’s red carpet look at Sunday’s ACM Awards won her spots on a number of critics’ “Best Dressed” lists. She has decided to auction off the Pandora charm bracelets she wore to the event to raise funds for ACM Lifting Lives, the charitable arm of the Academy of Country Music dedicated to improving lives through the power of music. Fans can place their bids at through April 21 at 2/1c.

See photos from the ACM Awards >>

“ACM Lifting Lives supports great organizations that are making strides with music education and medical research, supporting our amazing military veterans and more,” Kellie said. “I’m excited to help raise money for such a wonderful charity. It makes me proud to be an ACM member.”  Continue Reading


Posted at 1:27 pm | Permalink
Mar 31

Academy of Country Music Announces Events for ACM Party for a Cause Festival

Academy of Country Music Announces Events for ACM Party for a Cause Festival

The Academy of Country Music has announced a number of activities and special events that will take place during the 2nd Annual ACM Party for a Cause Festival, a two-day music festival headlined by Rascal Flatts and Keith Urban on Friday, April 4 and Saturday, April 5. The festival will feature multiple stages for live country music, interactive games, a country marketplace, and more including the ACM & Cabela’s Great Outdoors Archery Event, ACM Expo Marketplace presented by Roper, Coors Light Beer Garden, Diet Dr Pepper Red Carpet Experience, Firestone’s Destination Country Tour, RAM Ride and Drive and many more.

“We are thrilled to partner with some of America’s most recognized brands in order to create a dynamic, interactive experience for our fans,” Teresa George, Senior Vice President, Brand Integration and Strategic Partnerships for the Academy of Country Music, said. “Each brand’s participation is pivotal in making The Week Vegas Goes Country® one of the most exciting weeks in Las Vegas!”

The 2nd Annual ACM Party for a Cause Festival is part of The Week Vegas Goes Country leading up to the 49th Academy of Country Music Awards on Sunday, April 6, 2014 at 8/7c on CBS. Headlined by Rascal Flatts on Friday and Keith Urban on Saturday, Danielle Bradbery, Justin Moore, Cassadee Pope, Thomas RhettFlorida Georgia Line and The Cadillac Three will also perform on Friday with Will HogeChase Rice and Charlie Worsham on the Party Stage. Lee BriceBrett EldredgeTyler FarrKip MooreJoe NicholsJerrod NiemannChris YoungLove and Theft and Parmalee. Joel Crouse, Jon Pardi, Leah Turner, Austin Webb, Dan + Shay, and Max Impact, the premier rock band of the United States Air Force, will perform on the Party Stage on Saturday. Continue Reading


Posted at 12:42 pm | Permalink
Mar 26

John Carter Cash Honors His Family Name

John Carter Cash

John Carter Cash at Cash Cabin Studio. Photo courtesy of John Carter Cash.

By Crystal Caviness

© 2014 CMA Close Up® News Service / Country Music Association®, Inc.

Welcome to the Cash Cabin Studio, nestled among tall, strong trees on a 40-acre property in Hendersonville, Tenn. Up three steps, across a wooden porch and inside the nondescript door is where John Carter Cash does his work while also maintaining the legacy of his parents, Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash.

Johnny and June recorded prolifically inside these walls, particularly in their later years. As head of the House of Cash, John Carter Cash weaves the business of his father’s music publishing and recording catalog with recording, producing, songwriting and occasional book-writing via another company he leads, Cash Productions.

“I have to have a balance,” he explained. “The House of Cash is about furthering the legacy. I’m vibrantly excited about the legacy — my parents’ and the Carter Family’s. I embrace it, but I have aspects of my life that are outside of that.”

Within the House of Cash, John Carter Cash has the final word on administering and licensing his father’s deep catalog. While much is handled by BMG Publishing, Cash generally tackles the harder issues, along with his father’s longtime manager, Lou Robin. “I handle the things that are gray,” Cash noted. “We try to make decisions the same way as if my dad were in the room.” Continue Reading


Posted at 3:35 pm | Permalink