Apr 21Carrie Underwood grants Make-A-Wish meeting for Caledonia teen
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — A Caledonia high school student, who has battled a brain tumor for more than two years, is set to meet country-pop superstar Carrie Underwood before the singer’s Saturday concert in Jacksonville, Florida.
Haley Gort and her mother, Jodi Gort, through the Make-A-Wish Foundation, escaped West Michigan’s floodwaters and mid-April snowstorm to fly to the Underwood show, fulfilling the 18-year-old’s dream of meeting her favorite performer.
“I wouldn’t pick anyone else,” Haley Gort said Saturday, April 20, from her hotel room. “I really wanted to meet her.”
The Gorts have also been given backstage passes by Underwood, Jodi Gort said, calling her daughter a “crazed fan.”
The teen’s dream is coming true through the foundation’s Wishes in Flight program, which uses donated airline miles to support the travel.
But it’s been quite the battle to get to this point for Gort, who has undergone months of radiation and chemotherapy treatment after being diagnosed with a tumor on her pituitary gland.
“The chemo was way worse than the radiation. Those two months weren’t very fun,” Haley Gort said. “I had to sit in a chair for three hours for three days straight hooked up with an IV and feeling like crap. Then for about a week after, I was nauseous and vomiting. I couldn’t keep food down and I lost my hair.”
The news of late has been much better, Jodi Gort said. Last week, another MRI showed that Haley is still clear of what her mother calls a “pretty well behaved tumor” as it didn’t spread out to other parts of Haley’s body.
Haley’s sisters Cami Jo and Caitlin nominated her for the Make-A-Wish program and there was little doubt who the 18-year-old would choose. They selected the Florida show as a reprieve from Michigan weather
The family has been treated like royalty, Jodi Gort said.
“We are thinking that we’ll never take off our Make-A-Wish t-shirts,” said Jodi Gort. “We have been treated like celebrities with a big going away party and a professional photographer. The rooms, car, and hotel, everything has been so incredible.”
The pilot of the plane to Florida even invited Haley into the cockpit to sit in the pilot’s chair which she called “the coolest part of the trip so far.”
That’s bound to change after the limousine picks the family up for the show.
Credit – Michigan Live
Apr 20Carrie Underwood Sounds Off About Tennessee ‘Ag Gag’ Bill
Carrie Underwood is furious about a new bill that has passed in Tennessee — and she’s not afraid to say so in public. The ‘Blown Away’ singer took to social media Thursday (April 18) to denounce the Tennessee state legislature for passing the so-called “Ag Gag” bill, which many critics say will help factory farms get away with abusing animals.
“Shame on TN lawmakers for passing the Ag Gag bill,” Underwood posted to Facebook. “If Gov. Bill Haslam signs this, he needs to expect me at his front door. Who’s with me?”
According to the Nashville Scene, the bill makes it illegal to videotape animal cruelty or abuse and then fail to turn the evidence in to authorities within 48 hours. While the agricultural business has steadfastly claimed that the bill’s goal is to prevent animal cruelty, its opponents have claimed that the real goal of the legislation is to silence whistle-blowers within the factory farms, since it creates a scenario that would prevent them from documenting enough evidence to prove a pattern of abuse. Under the new bill, farmers could conceivably brush off any allegations of wrongdoing as a one-time mistake and face no penalties.
While the bill was passed by the Republican-dominated Tennessee legislature, two Republican lawmakers staunchly opposed the legislation. Murfreesboro Sen. Bill Ketron argued with his colleagues that Jeffrey Dahmer and Ted Bundy were cruel to animals when they were little, while Senate GOP leader Mark Norris said those who backed the bill were not truly concerned about animal cruelty.
“If you’re truly concerned about animal abuse, deal with the root cause not what people do after they see it,” Norris stated. “The implication of this bill is that it’s OK to abuse animals. It’s all right.”
According to USA Today, there are similar bills pending in nine different states. “These measures are designed to curb modern-day muckraking by preventing the recording of abuses and compelling whistle-blowers to identify themselves to the government,” the article states. “The quick time frame for reporting makes it impossible to document sustained abuse.”
Underwood is usually not one to get publicly involved in politics, but she is an outspoken animal lover. In an episode of VH1′s ‘Behind the Music,’ she revealed that she became a vegetarian as a little girl after watching her parents castrate calves on the family farm.
“I couldn’t eat those precious cows — they were my babies!” the singer said. “I bottle-fed some of them.
Credit – Taste Of Country
Apr 18Lansing Review: Underwood’s ‘Blown Away’ tour offers strong vocals, snazzy stage show
Carrie Underwood’s successful “Blown Away” tour reached MSU’s Breslin Center on Saturday. Underwood gave a passionate nearly hour-and-forty-minute performance, which kept the sold-out crowd enchanted throughout the evening.
“Blown Away” is Underwood’s third headlining tour, the others being 2008’s “Carnival Ride” and 2010-11’s “Play On” treks, and by now, her stage show is down pat. The Oklahoman’s current setup is a blend of flashy costuming, snazzy stage sets, pop and country jams, a talented backup band and a variety of multi-media elements, making this a feast for the eyes and ears.
Underwood’s set list was varied, featuring tracks spanning her four full-length albums. She played song after song from her catalog, from her 2005 chart-topper “Jesus Take the Wheel” to “Good Girl” from last year’s “Blown Away.” Musically, Underwood’s live show offers a mix of shiny pop and twangy country. While production-wise, it’s a hard-rocking arena show.
A product of “American Idol,” Underwood is no stranger to performing live, and her voice sounded strong and fiery as she leapt between power ballads, harder-rocking nuggets and light, sunny pieces. Her vocals really stood out on “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and the show’s closer, “Blown Away.” Hits like “Cowboy Casanova,” “All-American Girl” and “Before He Cheats” really engaged the crowd. Giant beach balls were tossed throughout the crowd during “One Way Ticket.” All in all, Underwood performed a whopping 20-plus songs, with more of her lengthy set list including “Undo It,” “Wasted,” “Get Out of This Town,” “Nobody Ever Told You,” “Flat on the Floor,” “Remind Me” and “I Know You Won’t.”
A few Underwood fans were lucky enough to meet the superstar at a special meet-and-greet before the show.
One of them, MSU neuroscience major Alyssa Engle, was at the show with her mom, Kristy.
“Carrie signed a photo for my mom’s birthday and wrote a nice message for her,” Engle, 20, said. “She’s gorgeous and glamorous and classy, and she took the time to really listen to what I had to say. She’s really sweet.”
Underwood is known for her post-concert tweets, and East Lansing was no exception. After closing out the show, Underwood tweeted, “Thanks, Michigan! You guys were so great tonight! It’s always good to be here!”
Credit – Lansing State Journal
Apr 18Carrie Underwood’s “Blown Away” Hits Double Platinum
Carrie Underwood’s single “Blown Away” has reached double platinum for 2 million downloads, according to the RIAA. It’s Underwood’s third double-platinum single, following “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and “Before He Cheats,” with the latter ultimately reaching triple platinum. Meanwhile, gold certifications representing 500,000 downloads go to Florida Georgia Line’s “Get Your Shine On,” Miranda Lambert’s “Mama’s Broken Heart” and Kacey Musgraves’ “Merry Go ‘Round.”
Credit – CMT
Apr 18Faith Hill replacements? It’s Carrie Underwood, and the rest
Yesterday we learned that Faith Hill will no longer be asking us where, exactly, Sunday Night Football is, and rhyming “Jack” with “fact”. Say it ain’t so, Faith.
Shattered. Faith Hill easily leads the list of things I associate with Sundays in the fall, and she’s only narrowly ahead of being asked if I’d like to date a cougar 26 times throughout 14 hours of television viewing. Oh, that only happens to me?
Anywho, it took me a solid 24 hours to recover from Faith breaking up with us. As part of the mourning process, I thought we’d take a quick trip to listicle land to find a suitable replacement who meets network television’s
oglingvocal standards. There’s a problem with everyone who isn’t named Carrie Underwood, and we keep it real with No. 7.
1. Carrie Underwood: OK, the list is over then. Let’s go home. Underwood has the same country music background as Hill, and that appeals to the old guard among NBC’s target demographic. You know who you are. At 30 years old, she still has her youth too, which is also important to both the old guard, and men everywhere. Yeah, we’re ending the bush beating already.
2. Taylor Swift: See above. Youth? Country twang? Desirable blond woman? Check, check, check. The problem with Swift is that she may be too young, and far too associated with those bee-boppin’ tweeny teens who put ribbons in their hair and hate on their ex-boyriends. We must not anger the south.
3. Katy Perry: There’s appeal here, both to the wandering male gaze, and for the two people watching who appreciate sound vocal stylings. Perry’s flaw? Her lack of normal-ness. Johnny Cowboy fan ain’t havin’ no blue haired girl on his TV. No sir.
4. Beyonce: She has the Super Bowl appearance, so there’s that. But like Perry, she still seems a little too pop-ish and/or hip hop-ish to be introducing us to the brute sport of football face smashing.
5. Selena Gomez: Gomez has both the youth tweeny deal going (see: Swift), and the pop thing too (see: Perry). Combined, that will coat television sets in beer. However, this would be a bold move to target the middle school bro demographic.
6. Britney Spears: Eggball fans like to keep their comeback stories on the field. The male species may again enjoy looking at Spears, but this isn’t 1998 with your puffy pink hair things anymore, sister.
7. Kate Upton: Let’s end all the pretending, alright? Men who watch football like to look at women who are, well, easy to look at, and they give few craps about singing talent. So have the Internet’s queen of clickage dance around for a while, and then vocally give her the Cher uber-digitized treatment. Done.
Credit – The Score