C.J. Harris has come a long way from playing bars in Jasper, Alabama to making it to the Top 6 on Season 13 of American Idol — and his journey wasn't without a few bumps along the way. Harris weathered some pretty harsh criticism on the show about his singing style, but that was nothing compared to some of the prejudice he faced back home when he was first starting out as a musician.
"I would go in some bars and people didn't want to see [me]," Harris told TVGuide.com this week. "It didn't matter how good I was. They didn't want to hear it. I've had people walk out on me. I've booked shows back at home, and I'd come and play the show, and the owner would come up to me and say, 'Hey, people just aren't enjoying your music tonight. We want you to cut it short.' It was obviously because of one reason. I've dealt with that."
Keith Urban, Jenifer Lopez, Harry Connick, Jr.
Did American Idol's Top 13 rise to the occasion?
Monday was the official debut of the Top 13 finalists and apparently, the debut of voting at the top of the hour. The night's theme is "This Is Me," which we take to mean we can totally psychoanalyze the singers by their song choice. Will anyone dare to do "Billionaire"?
James, Desiree Hartsock
The Bachelorette is usually lighthearted and full of fun, but this week's episode, which incorporated the tragedy caused by Hurricane Sandy, had a more serious tone.
As part of the episode's one-on-one date, Desiree and James headed to the New Jersey shore where they met a couple whose home was destroyed and who had to celebrate their 38th wedding anniversary in a Red Cross shelter. Des and James then gave the couple their date and instead spent their night grabbing pizza and eventually joining the couple for a private concert by Darius Rucker.
Can't get enough of Duck Dynasty's Southern-fried home sense? Your favorite A&E redneck millionaires are coming out with a Christmas album, the cast announced at Saturday's CMA Music Festival, according to the Great American Country website.
Usher, Blake Shelton
Blake Shelton hosted an emotional Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert Wednesday in Oklahoma City to benefit United Way's recovery efforts in tornado-ravaged Oklahoma.
Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton
Blake Shelton, Reba McEntire and more of country music's biggest stars are uniting Wednesday night for a benefit concert to aid the victims of the Oklahoma tornado.
Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert, which will air live at 9/8c on NBC, was organized by Shelton, who hails from the Sooner state.
Country music artist Darius Rucker has publicly responded to a racist comment made towards him over Twitter.
After Rucker covered Bob Dylan's "Wagon Wheel" at the Grand Ole Opry on Sunday, former Twitter user PQKullman tweeted, "@dariusrucker Leave country to the white folk."
Rucker immediately retweeted the comment adding, "WOW. Is this 2013 or 1913?" and "Ill [sic] take my grand ole Opry membership and leave your racism. Wow." When asked by fans why he was responding to racists, the former Hootie and the Blowfish front-man said, "So the world can see them."
Check out the hottest looks from the Billboard Music Awards
Noticeably lacking in the ranks of The X Factor's contestants: budding country music stars. (Maybe they didn't want to risk another Scotty McCreery-style steamroller upstaging upstarts like "Astro.") And now, as the Top 11 square off, Fox's overblown singing contest (8/7c) faces its toughest competition to date: another musical extravaganza, ABC's three-hour broadcast of The 45th Annual CMA Awards (8/7c) from Nashville, with Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley co-hosting for the fourth year in a row. (They'll perform their hit "Remind Me" during the show.)
Sheryl Crow and Brad Paisley
Forget rockin'. Is it possible to boot-scoot around a Christmas tree? Tonight, some of country music's biggest names gather to celebrate the holiday season in CMA Country Christmas (9:30/8:30c, ABC). Hosted by Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles, the special boasts performances from the likes of Brad Paisley, Martina McBride, Reba and admitted Yuletide fanatic Darius Rucker.
Tim McGraw, LeAnn Rimes and Kellie Pickler are among the presenters at the 44th Annual Country Music Awards.
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McGraw is an 11-time CMA award winner and took home the top prize — entertainer of the year — in 2001. Rimes won the CMA Horizon Award in 1997, while Pickler is a two-time CMA nominee.
Miranda Lambert leads Country Music Awards nominations
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