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Billy Dukes

Billy Dukes' music background includes jobs as Music Director and night DJ at WQDR 94.7 in Raleigh, N.C., writer for Recoil Magazine, a monthly out of Grand Rapids, Mich., and writer for the Kalamazoo Gazette, in Kalamazoo, Mich. The Western Michigan University graduate followed a girl to Raleigh in 2006, and wisely married her one year later. They live in northeast Wake County with their two dogs Daisy and Clementine and their son. In his free time Billy enjoys playing and watching baseball, cycling, and exploring nature.
Blake Shelton Kacey Musgraves
Rick Diamond, Getty Images / Facebook
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Blake Shelton vs. Kacey Musgraves – The Showdown

Two ACM Awards nominees will square off in today's Showdown. Blake Shelton goes for win number five in a row with 'Boys 'Round Here.' That would put him into the Showdown Hall of Fame for the first time, but Female Vocalist of the Year Kacey Musgraves is standing in his way with her five-star rated single 'Blowin' Smoke.'

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Vote to Determine the Top 10 Videos of the Week in Taste of Country’s Countdown

Women continue to rule the Taste of Country Top 10 Video Countdown. For a third straight week, a video for a song sung by a female topped the weekly countdown. It was Carrie Underwood's 'Two Black Cadillacs' last week, and prior to that, 'American Beautiful' by the Henningsens. Can new clips by Jason Aldean, Blake Shelton or Eric Church best the country superstar? It's up to fans to decide the weekly Top 10.

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Category: News
Blake Shelton Drake White
Rick Diamond / Jason Kempin, Getty Images
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Blake Shelton vs. Drake White – The Showdown

A win in today's Showdown would put Blake Shelton one win away from the Hall of Fame. On Friday, the singer's new song 'Boys 'Round Here' made short work of 'He Loves to Make Me Cry' by Kristen Kelly. Fans will have a chance to vote for the new single from 'Based on a True Story ...' all day today, as well as tonight on Taste of Country Nights radio. 

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Category: News Tags:
Charlie Daniels
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Charlie Daniels Hospitalized for Pacemaker Implant, Pneumonia

Country legend Charlie Daniels is expected to remain hospitalized until Friday as he recovers from pneumonia and a pacemaker implant to regulate his heart rate. The singer was admitted to a Nashville area hospital on Monday (March 25). He says he hadn't been feeling well.

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Blake Shelton
Warner Music Nashville
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Blake Shelton, ‘Boys ‘Round Here’ – ToC Critic’s Pick [Listen]

There is comedy in Blake Shelton singing with Pistol Annies, as he does on his new single 'Boys 'Round Here.' One imagines a country Hugh Hefner surrounded by his beauties. In real life, the Annies likely (very likely) don't attend to his every need and agree with him at all costs, but they do on this song, and it's absolutely charming. 

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Category: Reviews Tags:
Thompson Square
Anthony Baker
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Thompson Square, ‘Just Feels Good’ – Album Review

The best songs on Thompson Square's new album 'Just Feels Good' sound like a conversation between the two married lovers. Early on, their back-and-forth is light and playful. Later ballads take a more somber tone, but all that find the 'If I Didn't Have You' singers sharing lead are highlights from the duo's sophomore project.

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Category: Reviews Tags:
Kenny Chesney Things
Kevork Djansezian, Getty Images
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10 Things You Didn’t Know About Kenny Chesney

In recent years, Kenny Chesney has began to reveal layers of his personal life through his music. Songs from 'Hemingway's Whiskey,' 'Welcome to the Fishbowl' and 'Life on a Rock' are his most personal and introspective to date, but he's still somewhat of a private person, one who shuns social media in favor of retreats to the islands. There are plenty of things even a superfan of the 'Pirate Flag' singer might not know. 

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Category: Yakima News Tags:
James Wesley
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James Wesley, ‘Thank a Farmer’ – Song Review

James Wesley has a real feel for the life and struggles of the blue-collar American. His new song 'Thank a Farmer' is similar to his previous Top 30 hit 'Real' in its honest, no-nonsense approach. The worst thing a singer can do with a song like either of these is come off as contrived. Wesley is a long way away from being accused of that. 

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Category: Reviews Tags:
Kacey Musgraves
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Kacey Musgraves, ‘Blowin’ Smoke’ – ToC Critic’s Pick [Listen]

The magic of many of the songs on Kacey Musgraves' debut album -- including her new single 'Blowin' Smoke' -- is in the little details. 'Merry Go 'Round' thrived in efficient specificity. The follow-up is equally effective in its portrayal of a life waiting tables.

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Category: Reviews Tags:
Wynonna
Erika Goldring, Getty Images
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Wynonna, ‘Something You Can’t Live Without’ – Song Review

It takes a few listens to absorb the new sound Wynonna reveals on her new single 'Something You Can't Live Without.' The singer and 'Dancing With the Stars' competitor hasn't had a hit song in a decade, but comparing this to music from the 'What the World Needs Now Is Love' album would be like comparing Kelly Clarkson now to her 2003 self, but flip-flopped.

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Category: Reviews Tags:
Craig Campbell, Rachel Farley, Parmalee
TasteofCountryMusicFestival.com
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Craig Campbell, Parmalee + More Join Growing 2013 Taste of Country Music Festival Lineup

Country music's hottest new music and camping festival just got even better. Four new artists have been added to an already star-studded lineup at the 2013 Taste of Country Music Festival. Craig Campbell, Parmalee, Rachel Farley and LoCash Cowboys will join headliners Willie Nelson and Lady Antebellum from June 13-15 at Hunter Mountain, N.Y.

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Category: Yakima News Tags:
Tim McGraw, Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett
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Items From Tim McGraw, Florida Georgia Line Thomas Rhett + More Added to Music for Newtown Auction

Tim McGraw concert tickets and an autographed Florida Georgia Line poster are amongst items country fans may be interested in when the Music for Newtown auction begins on March 25. Additionally, the Avett Brothers and Thomas Rhett have donated items to benefit the families of victims and first responders from the December tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

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