One of the thoughts that haunts country singers who have a big road show crossing the country, is that some accident might occur to some vehicle transporting members of their entourage. Kenny Chesney's always been proud of his gang of folks inhabiting his huge caravan of buses and trucks. So, it wasn't good news to him that yesterday morning on their way to tonight's Poets & Pirates Show in New Orleans Arena, that a car broadsided the Sponsor bus just outside of Jackson, Mississippi. (click to see TV chopper photos)
A passenger vehicle had hit the back quarter bay of the Corona bus, which was carrying two sponsorship reps - not members of Chesney's staging team as has been previously reported. Slowing down, the driver saw the car bounce off a wall, back into the bus and begin to spin. Bringing the bus to as quick a stop as a 45 foot tour bus can manage with sleeping passengers, they came to rest 150 yards away.
“We were all kinda surprised,” says Brett Palmer of AbiJack Management, who is the Corona Extra rep for the tour. “You could feel something, but you couldn't tell what.”
“These are the things you hate hearing,” said Chesney, who was in Nashville working on a video for his “Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven.” the first single from his fall release Lucky Ole Sun. “We all spend so much time on the highways… and you know things happen. It's not reckless, or anyone's fault - except maybe misgauging how big those buses really are. I'm just so glad that everybody's okay… In a situation like this, the fact that nobody's hurt is the best news of all.”
Police arriving on the scene surveyed the damage.The driver of the car was sent to the hospital, but the AbiJack folks were re-assured that no serious injuries had been sustained. They answered a few questions and were released to continue their trip (where he was the 81st man on the field for the New Orleans Saints) in around 15 minutes.
KEITH URBAN STAYS CONNECTED TO AUSTRALIA
Keith and his wife Nicole Kidman maintain homes in Nashville and Australia. Keith says there are two reasons he does that. One he loves his homeland and wants to maintaing contact with it. But, he also never wanted his countrymen to think he'd forsaken his place of birth.
"I think Australia used to be not so good at dealing with success. If people from Australia went overseas and achieved success, back home they had a real love to want to chop you down really quickly and bring you back to earth. They wanted you to stay humble to the point of humility you know, and thinking almost poorly of yourself. I see that’s changing quite a lot now. There are so many more people leaving Australia to go overseas and achieving success, but these artists, like myself, are not turning their backs on Australia. I’m still proud to be Australian and I make regular trips back there. And I think Australia is beginning to accept, 'OK, we should be more proud parents of our kids going out and achieving things instead of feeling miserable that we didn’t get to do it,' which I think used to be the attitude."
GEORGE STRAIT SAYS THERE'S NOTHING LIKE THAT FIRST 1 Strait now has more #1 hits than any country artist in history. He says every one of them is exciting...but there was no feeling like scoring that first one when “FOOL HEARTED MEMORY” hit the top of the Billboard chart in 1982.
"It was pretty incredible!...Because I just felt fortunate to get a record contract! I’d been trying to do that for quite a few years and I went to Nashville and cut "Unwound and "Unwound" hit 6 on the charts and so they let me do an album. So, I felt real fortunate just to do that and to have one go number one was an incredible feeling!"
RANDY TRAVIS' LETTERMAN APPEARANCE ENCORES TONIGHT His recent appearance on The Late Show With David Letterman, airs again TONIGHT on CBS.
HEIDI NEWFIELDS FIRST SOLO ALBUM DEBUTS AT #2
Her solo career is off to a good start as her debut solo CD, What Am I Waiting For, debuts at #2 on Top Country albums chart and makes the top 10 of the all-genre Top 200 chart.
From the road in upstate New York, Newfield states,
“I am so thrilled with the reaction from everyone regarding my new album! The record was such a labor of love and I couldn’t be more proud with the result. This is just the beginning of good music to come.”