Tag Archives: music concerts

Academy of Country Music Awards Brings Oodles of Celebs to Las Vegas

Brooks & Dunn, Lady Antebellum, Randy Houser, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire and Montgomery Gentry are just some of the many country music stars planning to participate in the 45th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards In Las Vegas starting on April 18. 

Honoring country music’s top talent and the industry’s hottest emerging talent, to be broadcast LIVE from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas Sunday, April 18 at 8:00 PM live ET/delayed PT on the CBS Television Network. In addition, the Academy will tape an all-star concert special, ACM Presents: Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo at the same location on Monday, April 19, to air at a later date on the CBS Television Network. Both shows are produced for television by Dick Clark Productions.

The list of events includes the ACM Concerts at Fremont Street Experience, the ACM Chairman’s Ride, a special USO performance, All-Star Jam and more. 

Some details are as follows, with timing information to be released later: 

Friday & Saturday, April 16 & 17

ACM Concerts at Fremont Street Experience – For the 4th year in a row, the Academy of Country Music presents concerts at Fremont Street Experience! Featuring headlining performances by Lady Antebellum on Friday and Miranda Lambert on Saturday, these free and open-to-the-public concerts start at 6:30pm on two stages in downtown Las Vegas.  For the 2nd year in a row, winners in each of the newcomer categories Top New Solo Vocalist, Top New Vocal Group and Top New Vocal Duo will have the chance to perform at Fremont Street Experience during these concerts. 

Saturday, April 17 

ACM Chairman’s Ride – This event has grown from its inception and for the second year will be an invitation-only event for artists and industry VIPs to experience a scenic ride through the gorgeous Nevada landscape. ACM/The Home Depot Humanitarian Award honorees of 2010, Montgomery Gentry, will host the ride for the 6th time this year. The event benefits ACM Lifting Lives. Event details and timing will be made available only to invited, registered participants.

USO Concert in Partnership with ACM Lifting Lives™ – For the first time ever, ACM Lifting Lives (the Academy’s charitable arm) is partnering with the USO to bring a free, private concert to the service men and women of Nellis Air Force Base just outside of Las Vegas, NV. USO tour veterans Montgomery Gentry and Randy Houser are scheduled to perform for the crowd. The event will be open to all military ID holders and media credentialed specifically for this event. 

Sunday, April 18 

45th ANNUAL ACADEMY OF COUNTRY MUSIC AWARDS – Hosted by Reba McEntire for a record 12th time and featuring the hottest performances by today’s superstars of country, the Awards will once again take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. 

ACM All-Star Jam – This raucous, no-holds-barred jam features impromptu performances from the artists who participate in the Awards. Past performers have included Big & Rich, Brooks & Dunn, Kenny Chesney, Kelly Clarkson, Sara Evans, Jack Ingram, Jewel, Toby Keith, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Montgomery Gentry, James Otto, Brad Paisley, Kellie Pickler, Taylor Swift, Sugarland, Carrie Underwood, Gretchen Wilson, Dwight Yoakam and more. 

Monday, April 19

ACM Presents: Brooks & Dunn – The Last Rodeo – Kix Brooks and Ronnie Dunn of Brooks & Dunn, the best-selling duo in the history of country music, will receive the Academy’s Milestone Award in recognition of their 20-year, record-breaking career during this tribute concert special. They will be honored for holding the record for the most wins of any artist in the Academy’s history with 26 awards in total, including three Entertainer of the Year awards. They will also be honored for holding the record for most Top Vocal Duo wins, with 15 awards, eight of which are consecutive from 2000-2007. Artists already scheduled to perform at the taping include superstars Kenny Chesney, Reba McEntire, Rascal Flatts, Carrie Underwood and Keith Urban. Details on special elements of the show and more performers that will be added will be announced at a later date. Tickets are still available for this show, which benefits ACM Lifting Lives and will air at a later date on CBS Television Network from the MGM Grand Garden Arena. For information on tickets visit www.Ticketmaster.com

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U2 Blowout Crowd Expected in Las Vegas Momentarily

If you haven’t got tickets yet, just forgedaboutit.   In a few hours from now more than 40,000 people are expected to jam Sam Boyd Stadium for their 360 Tour until it probably bursts wide open, surely setting a record for the largest concert ever held at the venue. 

It took 135 trucks to haul in the 500,000-plus pounds of equipment used to construct the foreboding claw-like structure that will surround the band.  The massive stage will stand more than 150 feet tall.  And, if that’s not enough, they’ll show off a new cylindrical video display of connected LED panels held high by a 150-foot steel frame. 

Compared to their November 2001 show during their Elevation Tour, only 18,000 people came.  But that was a memorabable event nonetheless, as No Doubt opened for them and rocked out for 30 minute.  Not to be outdone, freelance photographer Denise Truscello, who still photographs in Las Vegas, got an impromptu makeout session with Bono when he ducked his head into the photographers’ pit. 

But what everyone remembered was not Truscello, but when the glowing LED screen behind the stage rolled with the name of every person killed in the attacks of Sept. 11 as Bono sang out “One.” A band capable of evoking any emotions onstage reduced 18,000 fans to tears. 

U2 always does something unpredictable when they perform in Las Vegas during their 16-city U.S. tour.

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Huge Night of Rock ‘n’ Roll in Las Vegas on Oct. 2 – “Slash & Friends”

Velvet Revolver/ex-Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash has just revealed a huge lineup of musicians who will join him for his all-star concert in Las Vegas on October 2. Slash

The concert, billed “Slash & Friends”, celebrates the 20th anniversary of Las Vegas hotel, casino and white tiger playground the Mirage.

According to Slash, the “house band” for the Mirage gig will consist of:

* Tommy Clufetos (Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent) – Drums
* Johnny Griparic (Slash’s Snakepit) – Bass
* Ted “Zig Zag” Andreadis (Guns N’ Roses) – Keyboards
* John 5 (Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson) – Guitar
* Slash – Guitar
* Franky Perez (Scars on Broadway) – Vocals

Slash’s special guests that night are “more or less in this order”:

* Rocco Deluca (The Burden)
* Nicole Scherzinger (Pussycat Dolls)
* Courtney Love (Hole)
* Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick)
* Robin Zander (Cheap Trick)
* Joe Perry (Aerosmith)

Slash says, “Matt Sorum [Velvet Revolver, ex-Guns N’ Roses] is [also] jamming a couple songs, plus there will be some other surprises. I also just got confirmation that the Joe Perry Project is playing as well, [so] it promises to be a bitchin’ evening.”

Slash has spent the last few months recording material for his forthcoming solo album, which will be released under the “Slash & Friends” banner. He says, “the [record] is in its mixing stage and the mixes to this point sound great. We have recorded 18 songs, with one more I want to track in the next couple weeks.” He adds, “the record is still slated for a February/March release.”

Slash tracked most of the CD with former Nine Inch Nails drummer Josh Freese and ex-Jane’s Addiction bassist Chris Chaney. Confirmed guest singers so far include Ozzy Osbourne, Avenged Sevenfold’s M. Shadows and Chris Cornell (Soundgarden, Audioslave). The CD was produced by Eric Valentine (Good Charlotte, Queens of the Stone Age) and features additional appearances by ex-Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea and former Nirvana drummer and current Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl.

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Kitsch Rules: Live Rock ‘N Roll Music Plays Every Mile Down Las Vegas Strip Marathon

The Las Vegas Marathon has long been a tradition in the Las Vegas Valley, but now the large national and international appealing race, along with the race course, is getting a whole new makeover under new leadership. The Las Vegas Rock N’ Roll Marathon unveiled it plans last week for their inaugural race on December 6 and the big change for runners is that they will be running smack dab on the Strip, not racing down residential streets as in past years. 

But that’s not all.  To provide a truly Las Vegas entertainment overload experience, local and regional live bands, not DJs, will be playing every mile and there will be competitions at the water stations for runners. 

On top of that, many runners will be dressed up in costumes, running for causes, and, yes, even getting married in group ceremonies during the run.

The estimated 20,000 runners and 150,000 spectators this year will hopefully also bring some much needed revenue to the City of Entertainment. If participation in the marathon reaches the numbers expected, organizers believe it will bring in about $40 million to Las Vegas and about $1 million in tax revenues.

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Michael Jackson Faces $40 Million Lawsuit When Departing to London Shows This Week

Before heading off to London early this week, pop music icon Michael Jackson has a new $40 million lawsuit to contend with.   According to his attorney Ira Meyerowitz the new breach of contract lawsuit reportedly won’t stop Jackson from going ahead with his plans to perform in the 50-show “This is  It” tour in London. 

Allgood Entertainment reportedly had a signed contract with Michael’s manager to do a reunion concert with members of the Jackson family and produce it as a pay-per-view spectacular. The contract apparently had stipulations in it forbidding the sometimes Las Vegas resident to perform elsewhere beforehand or for 90 days afterward. 

But the London shows violated contract terms even before he’d performed them. Allgood’s managing partner, Patrick Allocco, said, “We’ve given Michael Jackson and his London promoters every opportunity to resolve this, but we have not heard from anyone. … . We want to be compensated for an agreement they entered into or be involved in some way with the London shows.” 

The deal called for him not to perform elsewhere for a certain period of time before the event or for at least three months after it. The lawsuit, now in court in New Jersey, says Jackson, manager Frank DiLeo and event promoter AEG Live/Concerts West broke the contract by signing to do the London series of concerts this summer. 

So far, representatives for Jackson and AEG have made no comment.

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Jessica Simpson: Blond if you do, blond if you don’t

Jessica Simpson, a frequent Las Vegas visitor, is one of those talented types who can’t seem to catch a break.  As a pop singer she was constantly compared to Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera – too voluptuous to be nice and not jessicasimpsongritty enough to be naughty.   

Her personal life has been the used as the source to create tabloid top sellers with pictures and stories of men who have, and who haven’t, spent time with her.  

And now only months after settling into her single woman skin and stepping up to the country music mic, Simpson appears to be ending her foray into her musical roots.  While she remains part of the Sony Music Group on the Epic label, Simpson is no longer involved with Sony Music Nashville.  Lauren Auslander a former spokesperson for Simpson said, “She (Simpson) was on loan to Sony Nashville for her country album.”   

Many fans believe that Simpson is a favorite target of the media and is often portrayed in a less than favorable light because of petty jealousy.  In a recent interview, Rascal Flatts’ lead singer Gary Levox said Simpson “..is in a spot where whatever she does, they pick her apart. They need to just leave her alone and just let her sing.” 

“She’s a wonderfully gifted singer,” added bassist Jay DeMarcus. “All the other stuff overshadows what she’s really about and it’s unfortunate, because there’s more to her there than just tabloid fodder.” 

It could be Jessica Simpson will spend her time in the spotlight being the blonde everyone loves to hate.  But with her talent, it’s more likely, Las Vegas Backstage Access believes, that she’ll find a way to rebound like blonde archetype Madonna than fall into the archives like Taylor Dayne.

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Las Vegas Goes Country, Hollywood Tags Along

When Las Vegas hosts a party, stand back- nothing is ever commonplace in the City of Entertainment.  Last night’s 44th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the MGM Grand Arena proved to be no exception.   The buzz of the award’s evening followed a week of Las Vegas fun, glitz, and glamour as Hollywood stars joined with country music’s best and brightest. 

The three-hour awards show featured award presenters Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jamie Foxx and Matthew McConaughey, but all eyes were on legendary Reba McEntire as she hosted the show for the 11th consecutive year.  

Providing a fitting prelude to the awards, hundreds of frenzied fans greeted their favorite musicians and singers on the red carpet outside of the MGM Grand before the show. 

After Kenny Chesney performed “Out Last Night”, Jennifer Love Hewitt arrived on stage wearing in a long white flowing gown and announced the first award of the night for Song of the Year among award contenders George Strait, Jamey Johnson, Heidi Newfield, Brad Paisley and Trace Adkins. 

Jennifer said she was not only a big fan of country music but also of Vegas. “There’s no place I’d rather be,” she said before announcing, in a surprise win, that Jamey Johnson had won for “In Color.” 

In the competition for Top Vocal Duo award, the very popular Sugarland beat out Big & Rich, Brooks & Dunn, Montgomery Gentry and Joey + Rory.  Sugarland is playing at live in concert at the Primm Valley Casino Resorts on July 24.  [Las Vegas Backstage Access February 11 article.] 

Las Vegas resident, MGM Grand illusionist and Magician of the Century David Copperfield, a coming-out country music fan that attended the ACM for the first time, donned a black Stetson while he pulled up his sleeves and made Taylor Swift magically appear from an overhead empty suspended box on the stage.  Swift hung around a bit to receive her crystal award for having the most record sales in the year and winning the Album of the Year Award for “Fearless.” 

Hollywood superstar and frequent Las Vegas entertainer Jamie Foxx, raised in Texas, confessed he was also a country music fan and then proceeded to introduce country music legend George Strait, saying he will be a guest singer for his friend at a taping in Las Vegas today for a May 27 CBS special when Strait is honored as Artist of the Decade.   Straight, with a career spanning 25 years, is the most nominated artist in the history of the Academy of Country Music Awards with a total of 78. 

Las Vegas’ hometown product Julianne Hough – she attended Las Vegas Academy and her mother lives here – julieanne1provided a Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction moment, though subtle, before gushing and accepting with pride her duo Top New Artist and fan favorite Top New Female Artist awards as her country singer boyfriend Chuck Wicks waited in the wings, cheering her on. 

Julianne and Chuck left this morning from Las Vegas on a flight to be back in Hollywood for tomorrow night’s episode of Dancing With the Stars, where they will partner for a Viennese Waltz to a Rascal Flatts number.   (Rascal Flatts won once again.)

The highlight and culmination of the evening came when Carrie Underwood won the Entertainer of the Year award, carrieunderwoodbeing the lone female among nominees Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisley, George Strait and Keith Urban.  Matthew McConaughey made the awards presentation.   (Did she really venture out after the event and check out George Strait’s ‘white boots’ in McConaughey’s car?) 

There was never a dull moment.  Even before it started, Tim McGraw got in a production fracas that ended with him walking out before the show started. 

Sporting his ‘Made In USA’ labeled guitar, John Rich sang to a cheering crowd “Shutting Detroit Down,” a ballad of frustration on corporate greed and workers getting the short end of the proverbial stick. 

Toby Keith took the opportunity to single out a reporter from a Nashville newspaper over the publication of a Rolling Stone story by actor Ethan Hawke. Both Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson denied the story, but the Tennessean published it anyway without reaching out to Toby. He lambasted the reporter with a series of F-bombs, and it seriously looked as if he might leave the media stage and go after the writer — but cooler heads prevailed, and Toby left the room abruptly. 

Behind the scenes, Trace Adkins, who was the runner-up on the first season of Celebrity Apprentice, took a verbal shot at this season’s participant Dennis Rodman. Trace said that if the former bad boy of basketball didn’t change his ways, it would wind up killing him. 

All this action in just one grand and glorious Las Vegas evening.

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