Cowboy Jack Clement was a prolific producer, songwriter, arranger, and talent scout.  He only made three albums of his own, the last of which is the new For Once and For All, executive produced by T Bone Burnett.  Ken Tucker reviews: 

Cowboy Jack Clement – the “cowboy” nickname was always something of a joke; he once said, “cowboy boots make my feet hurt”—was a colorful character as well as a first-rate songwriter and producer. Clement told music historian Peter Guralnick that Shakespeare and PG Wodehouse were influences on him as significant as any country or rock & roll artist, and since he wrote tunes for Johnny Cash called “Dirty Old Egg-Suckin’ Dog” and “Flushed from the Bathroom of your Heart,” I’m inclined to believe him. He also wrote some of the finest pure-country songs ever. 

Member of the Country Music Hall of Fame

“We’re in the fun business. If we’re not having fun, we’re not doing our job.” ~ Cowboy Jack

Celebrating a Decade of Songwriting Genius

The CMA Songwriters Series will return to Chicago at Joe’s Bar on Wednesday, July 30 at 8:30 pm to continue its outstanding 10 year legacy. The event will highlight artists Charlie Worsham, Striking Matches, and host Bob DiPiero. Tickets can be found here.

Warner Music Nashville recording artist Worsham released his debut album Rubberband in 2013. An alumnus of Berklee College of Music, Worsham made his Grand Ole Opry debut at just 12 years old. The accomplished musician co-wrote every song on Rubberband including the Top 20 hit “Could It Be” and has also had a cut by Dierks Bentley (“Heart of a Lonely Girl”). The Mississippi native has toured with Miranda Lambert, Brad Paisley, and Taylor Swift and was recently named a CMA Music Festival “Must-See Act” by


Striking Matches is a duo made up of Justin Davis and Sarah Zimmermann. Paired by a professor at Belmont University to perform for a classroom full of guitar majors, they have been writing and performing together ever since. Their self-titled EP was released in October 2012 and was named among iTunes “Best of 2012.” Featured on NPR and in the Wall Street Journal, the pair have already appeared on the Grand Ole Opry more than 15 times, opened for some of the biggest names in music, and had five songs featured on ABC’s hit television series “Nashville.”


Through the course of ten years, there have been both hit-makers and stars-to-be which have graced its stage and shared their stories behind the songs we love. What follows are only a few of the countless iconic moments that have helped establish the event’s legacy within the music community.

1. Eric Church- November 2, 2010

Eric Church got personal with the Songwriters Series crowd taking the opportunity to be a songwriter, instead of an artist, for the night as he shared the true stories behind the songs. Heartfelt memories turned into fan favorites had Church and fellow songwriters disregard a set-list and elect to play requests. The following year, he was nominated for three new artist awards including the CMA’s New Artist of the Year. Today he sits at the top of the charts with smash hits like “Drink in My Hand” “Springsteen” and “Give Me Back My Hometown.”


2. Kenny Chesney- August 25, 2011

An intimate setting like the Club Royale in Boston my not be a familiar atmosphere for Kenny Chesney anymore, but he seemed relaxed and at home as he sat back in his chair and enjoyed the event just as much as the fans in the audience. The voice behind 22 chart-topping songs said, “I came to town as a songwriter and always consider myself a songwriter first.” They later went on to share the stories behind the hits like “Out Last Night” “Strawberry Wine” and “Live Like You Were Dying.”

3. Carrie Underwood- June 31, 2012 

Carrie Underwood hit the Songwriters Series stage for the first time in 2012. Joined by Brett James, who wrote “Jesus Take the Wheel” and “Cowboy Casanova”, Luke Laird, who wrote “So Small” and “Undo It”, Hillary Lindsey, who wrote “Just a Dream” and “Last Name”, and last but not least, Bob DiPiero, who has composed numerous top hits. This was an unforgettable, as the sold out crowd was privileged to see Carrie Underwood in an intimate setting and seen as an equal amongst the other songwriters. Since her debut in 2005, Carrie Underwood has sold more than 14 million albums and has won over 120 awards. 

4. Miranda Lambert- June 11, 2013

The Songwriters Series returned to Boston and Miranda Lambert was along side Kip Moore and other featured tune smiths. At the time, Lambert was the reigning CMA Female Vocalist of the year and song of the year winner for “Over You”. On this iconic date, Miranda Lambert was able to share her story behind the music in the personal, acoustic setting. Fans all around the world viewed the show via a live stream on


10 Ways CMA Fest Saves the Day

10. Too much head-banging?

Get your hair fixed-up and a make-up touch-up at the Chevrolet tent in Fan Alley!


9. Thirsty?

Ahhhhh… Thanks, Lipton!


8. Hot?

Step into the Red Roof Inn misting tent!


7. Hungry?

Free Pizza from Hunt Brothers Pizza in The Buckle!


6. Thirsty Again… and Tired?

Step up to the Mountain Dew Kickstart tent for a surge of energy!


5. Too Much Sun?

You got your sunglasses, water bottle, pens for autographs, BUT WHAT ABOUT YOUR SKIN? Coppertone has you covered in The Buckle with free sunscreen samples!


4. Tired?

Snap out of it! Hit up the Dunkin Donuts tent for a free sample of iced coffee.


3. Sweet Tooth

Blue Bell Ice Cream always brings smiles with free vanilla samples!


2. Too Much To Tweet

Thanks to AT&T U-verse, Chevrolet and Great American Country, there are power outlets scattered throughout the footprint so recharge your phones and get back to sharing your #CMAfest experience!


1. You’ve Partied Pretty Hard…

You deserve a break. Relax in a Samsung Galaxy hammock and listen to live music!


Happenings at the Hall: Your Guide to the Country Music Hall of Fame Events During CMA Fest!

In just one year since last year’s CMA Fest, the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum has more than doubled in size! That means twice as much to see this year, including Reba McEntire’s Reba: All the Women I Am exhibit (closing June 22), Miranda Lambert: Backstage Access, and the Bakersfield Sound: Buck Owens, Merle Haggard and California Country.


The Museum’s recent expansion also features Discover Your Country, a new interactive gallery experience. With a 40-foot guitar, a booth to record and mix songs, songwriting stations, and more, you can discover what it’s like to feel like a Country Music star!

In addition to the fantastic exhibits, during CMA Fest the Hall of Fame will also be hosting a variety of shows, signings, and more that you won’t want to miss out on! Check out the full schedule below:

Tuesday, June 3

Hot Nights at the Hall – The Henningsens – 7 PM


Wednesday, June 4

Autograph Signing – Josh Turner – 11 AM

CMT Stage Performance – JT Hodges – 12:30 PM

Autograph Signing – Oak Ridge Boys – 1 PM


Thursday, June 5

CMT Stage Performance – Joel Crouse – 11 AM

CMT Stage Performance – Josh Thompson – 12:30 PM

Autograph Signing – Josh Thompson – 1 PM

Autograph Signing – Tyler Farr – 2:30 PM

Museum Program at Fan Fair X – CMA Close Up Stage – 2:45 PM

Autograph Signing – Kellie Pickler – 4:30 PM


Friday, June 6

Autograph Signing – Charley Pride – 10 AM

Autograph Signing – Sunday Best – 10 AM

CMT Stage Performance – Sunday Best – 11 AM

Autograph Signing – Brenda Lee – 11:30 AM

Autograph Signing – Craig Morgan – 1:00 PM

Autograph Signing – Jean Shepard – 1:00 PM

Autograph Signing – Natalie Stovall and The Drive – 3:00 PM

CMT Stage Performance – Natalie Stovall and The Drive – 3:30 PM

Autograph Signing – Crystal Gayle – 4:00 PM


Saturday, June 7

CMT Stage Performance – Brandy Clark – 10:00 AM

Autograph Signing – Brandy Clark – 10:30 AM

Songwriter Session – Luke Laird & Barry Dean – 11:30 AM

Family Program – Musical Petting Zoo – 12 - 2 PM

CMT Stage Performance – Lindsay Ell – 1:30 PM

CMT Stage Performance – Lee Ann Womack – 3:45 PM

First Saturday Art Crawl at Hatch Show Print – 6 - 9 PM


Sunday, June 8

Hatch Show Print Family Program – 12:00, 1:00 and 2:00 PM

Instrument Demonstration: Banjo – Richard Bailey – 1 PM

CMT Stage Performance – Lauren Alaina – 2:00 PM

Autograph Signing – Lauren Alaina – 2:30 PM

CMT Stage Performance – Brothers Osborne – 3:00 PM


As an added bonus, CMA Music Festival attendees may show their badge or ticket to receive $4 off Adult General Admission June 2 - June 11.

Discover more about all of the Happenings at the Hall here. Like what you’re seeing so far? If so, make sure you check out the Museum Members program, where you can enjoy the benefit of unlimited admission to the Museum year-round, the Hot Nights at the Hall concert series, as well as exclusive access to the 3rd Annual Member Lounge - a place to step inside, relax, and grab a few complimentary refreshments.

Visitors can become a member at or at the Museum Box Office.


We’ll see y’all at the Hall!

The Top 5 People You Are Bound to Run Into at CMA Fest

Music festivals are the perfect opportunity for fans to let loose and have a great time, and CMA Fest is no exception. Here’s a guide to some of the prime people watching you will without a doubt encounter at CMA Fest. All in good fun of course. We love all our fans!

1. The Overexcited Mom

We’ve seen them everywhere: amusement parks, shopping malls, and yes, even CMA Fest.


Look for these over-caffeinated mothers sprinting from attraction to show to signing, putting Frogger to shame as they weave through pedestrian traffic all for the sake of their children’s enjoyment.


And look for their ashamed children lurking behind them, assuring the general public that they have no relation to that force of nature gallivanting through the streets.


2. The Overtired Dad

Where there’s an overexcited mom, there is a dad who is doing everything in his power to keep up.


You might find these fathers taking a sanity break on benches or curbs while their families continue to run circles around them.


If you happen to find a CMA Fest dad who has slipped into “Just Resting My Eyes” mode, it’s best just to leave them in their dream world of air-conditioning and La-Z-Boy chairs.


3. The Couple That Is WAY Too Happy To Be Away From The Kids

Every couple knows how hard it is to find a babysitter for a long weekend. That’s why when mom and dad get the green light to take a weekend off at CMA Fest, chaos is sure to ensue.


Look for these couples merrily parading down Broadway, cheers-ing and high-fiving strangers in the name of parental freedom.


But watch your back when you cross these seemingly tame beasts at the beer tents—they will let nothing stand in their way of consuming the drink they haven’t touched since that pregnancy test read positive.


4. The Fangirls

Sporting their sundresses and cowboys boots, these southern belles seem perfectly nice and innocent at first.


However… everything can change in a split second once they spot one of their favorite Country Music studs.


At first sight of Luke Bryan, you better be far removed from the impending stampede of fangirls.



5. The Ultimate Bros

These guys will be celebrating their first all-bro weekend in a while, so they are ready to have a good time.


Look for their wolf pack jovially strutting throughout the fest, randomly yelling at things in unison for no specific reason.


At the shows, they’ll look like they’re keeping their cool when Cassadee Pope or Kimberly Perry comes on stage.


But inside we know they’re all like:


Let us know which of these characters you run into at the Fest—or if you are one of them yourself!

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