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Tag: Country Y'all! (71-80 of 180)

Readers' suggestions: 'SNL' sketches for Taylor Swift

Taylor-Swift_lYesterday, provoked by Taylor Swift and Kristen Wiig’s Penelope-esque promo, we asked for your sketch ideas for Swift. I’m with NatAttack, who wrote: “I feel it’s time for SNL to parody one of the greatest online parodies of our time: Stuff White People Like. Surely Taylor Swift belongs near the top of that list. (Love her/music but it’s true!) Some kind of pageant that pits the things white people love against each other would be grand in my book. Put Andy Sandburg in charge — I’m pretty sure he belongs on that list too.” Nic‘s idea could definitely work, too: “They should confront her and ask if she’s ever even seen Romeo and Juliet (since they obviously don’t end happily ever after). Then she can get all sorts of other plays/movies wrong. She could sing about Old Yeller living forever!” More of your good suggestions, below! It’s a good thing Kanye West won’t be there tonight, because none of you wanna see it… READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift to host 'Saturday Night Live': Sketch ideas?

Taylor Swift will host Saturday Night Live on Nov. 7, and it doesn’t take a comic genius to guess that her opening monologue will be interrupted. The question is: After a few of the cast members — or perhaps popular recurring hosts like Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin? — take their shots at her, will Kanye West actually pop up? Good PR move if they’ve kissed and made up. Or like press.

Swift’s said producers asked her over the summer if she’d like to host, and she’s been thinking of sketches ever since. I’m looking forward to seeing what she and the writers come up with: If you follow her on Twitter (“Getting photobombed by Daniel Craig = Priceless”), watch her MySpace videos (sample below), or remember her acting on SNL last January, or that “Thug Story” rap video from June’s CMT Music Awards, you know she’s got a good sense of humor and a willingness to “go there.”

Any sketch ideas you’d like to pitch her? I’d love to see a Celebrity Rehab-like sketch for headbangers. The girl is a big fan of the hair toss, and it’s got to stop. I’m also gonna need a Kellie Pickler cameo (they’re BFFs).

Carrie Underwood's holiday special: I vote for more duets, fewer skits. You?

Happy holidays, PopWatchers, and don’t tell me it’s too early for dropping yule bombs, yo! You can already smell the imminent death of Halloween — and the chemical scent of fauxflakes — at my local Duane Reade, which means that Santa’s on his way. (He’s loaded lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh.) (Sorry. Had to go there.)

Anyway, since you’re going to be waking up Saturday morning to find your next-door neighbor out on her front lawn setting up her Nativity scene, we might as well discuss Fox’s announcement this week that Carrie Underwood: An All-Star Holiday Special is coming to the network on Monday, Dec. 7, featuring living legend Dolly Parton, Brad Paisley, and (yes, yes, y’all!) David Cook. Generally, I’m pretty excited by this news: Much like garlic, the addition of Dolly Parton makes almost every dish a little tastier, and of course, anyone who’s seen the epic duet of “Go Your Own Way” embedded below knows the kind of magic Carrie and Cookie can generate when they pass the mic.

That said, there was one phrase in the Hollywood Reporter’s writeup of the special that, to me, was the written equivalent of a finding a hair in your salad: “Underwood will perform previous hits, holiday classics and songs from her upcoming album and participate in comedy bits.” Not for nothing, but for my holiday Hess truck, I’d prefer two full hours of music — especially if it involves awesome duets with A-list music acts — rather than a weird variety-concert hybrid where Carrie gets to test out her comic chops in a melange of Mrs. Claus-Harried Shopper-Toymaking Elf skits. Shouldn’t genuine musical chills always trump tepid chuckles and/or unnecessary snack breaks? So here’s a note to directors Nigel Lythgoe and Adam Shankman: READ FULL STORY

Jack Ingram goes for Guinness radio interview record, takes The EW Pop Culture Personality Test

Jack-Ingram_lCountry singer Jack Ingram is promoting his new album, Big Dreams & High Hopes, out today, by attempting to break the Guinness World Record for the most radio interviews in 24 hours. CMT is currently live-streaming his quest — approximately 225 five-minute chats. It’s not the craziest thing he’s ever done: That, he says, would be riding a steer in a celebrity event hosted by bullriding champion Tuff Hedeman. “Three seconds later, I couldn’t breathe for, like, literally two weeks. The next morning I could not get out of bed. Not because I was sore but because something was definitely wrong. It turns out I cracked a couple of ribs. I called Tuff, and he said, ‘You know what you do for a cracked rib, right? You say Ouch.'” Ingram shot the video for his current single, “Barefoot and Crazy,” the next day.

Nervous for his Guinness run, but realizing that when he got to New York he was “gonna have a beer with somebody,” he met PopWatch for a couple Bud Lights last night and warmed up with The EW Pop Culture Personality Test. (He left the bar at 9:30 p.m. — because he had a phoner to do.) READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift previews the MTV Video Music Awards

Taylor-Swift-VMA_lCountry superstar Taylor Swift is one of several MTV Video Music Award nominees, including Ne-Yo, Cobra Starship, and Katy Perry, appearing in West Side Story-inspired VMA promos that will be airing on the network this month. “It was right up my alley because I did a lot of theater growing up,” says Swift, who will perform her hit “You Belong With Me” on the Sept. 13 awards-show telecast. “It has a very Broadway-esque vibe to it. They’re all intercut story lines with different characters, on our way to the VMAs.”

Photo credit: Rene Cervantes

Country songs to become TV anthology series (or my game show)

Country singer and former Celebrity Apprentice contestant Clint Black has been tapped to exec produce a new TV anthology series called American Storytellers. According to Variety, the show will turn current and classic country songs into dramatic hourlong episodes. No network or on-screen talent has been announced, but producers will be looking to cast country artists in major roles.

Now, I can see where this sounds like a good idea to someone. Country music tells some hauntingly beautiful/heartbreaking stories (see the clip below). But (a) the genre does have music videos, so we’ve already seen “The Heart Won’t Lie” brought to life and (b) how is this not gonna end up cheesier than a stuffed crust pizza? I don’t think Reba McEntire and Vince Gill can star in every episode — though a girl can dream.

READ FULL STORY

'The Blind Side' vs. 'The Open Road': The Southern accents showdown

The trailer for The Blind Side surfaced yesterday, and while some bemoaned how abhorrently schmaltzy it looks — and truly, it is the world’s schmaltziest trailer — I was more worried about Sandra Bullock’s accent. (I’m also worried people are going to think the book is lame, which it resoundingly is not. Read this excerpt, called “The Ballad of Big Mike.” I love you, Michael Lewis.)

“Big Mike” Oher was recently a first-round draft pick for the Ravens, so, happy endings all around.

Anyway, I thought that was my limit on intense Southern accents for the week, until another trailer materialized, and holy outrageous drawl, Batman, Jeff Bridges is out of control. READ FULL STORY

Paula Abdul: Tread carefully with your 'American Idol' contract negotiations!

Paula-Abdul_lThe American Idol rumor mill this week has been buzzier than an angry bumblebee. People.com just confirmed the unfortunate news that Kara “The Terrible” DioGuardi has signed a deal and will be back to (presumably) share a new and impressive bag of gaffes, but there’s still no official word on whether Paula Abdul will be back on the show’s judging panel for season 9. (The Los Angeles Times reports sources close to the show who claim that Paula herself has cut her asking price from $20 million to $12 million annually.)

This got me thinking: As Paula considers her negotiation tactics, she might want to cross her fingers and hope that the Idol overlords don’t look too carefully at her recent track record outside of America’s favorite talent competition. Abdul’s 2007 Bravo reality series, Hey, Paula, averaged a paltry 453,000 viewers during its seven-episode run, while her recent single, “I’m Just Here for the Music,” racked up only 64,000 in digital sales, according to Nielsen SoundScan (compared to 387,000 for 2008’s Randy Jackson collaboration “Dance Like There’s No Tomorrow”). Sharon Dastur, program director for New York City’s Z100, says that “I’m Just Here for the Music” fizzled out before she’d even begun to consider adding it to her station’s playlist. If Abdul exits Idol, adds Dastur, she’s more likely to find success in the world of dance-oriented reality television rather than trying to revive her singing career. So whether or not Paula is worth eight-figures in the Idolverse, it’s no guarantee that any career options outside the show would necessarily result in big bucks or massive fan response.

What do you think, PopWatchers? Is Paula overplaying her hand? Do you think she will/should return for season 9? And is this public uncertainty over her future good for the show from a publicity standpoint? Sound off in the comments section below! (And follow me on Twitter @EWMichaelSlezak!)

Photo credit: Jen Lowery/Startraksphoto.com

Jason Aldean & Bryan Adams on 'CMT Crossroads' = 'Heaven'

I know I'm a fan of Bryan Adams, Jason Aldean, and CMT Crossroads, but how do you watch the sneak peek below of CMT Crossroads: Bryan Adams and Jason Aldean, and not program your DVR to record it Friday night at 9 p.m. ET?

Tim McGraw's cologne: Smells like...victory?

I've got no problem with Tim McGraw, nor his desire to extend his brand through fragrance — if Paris Hilton and Gene Simmons can do it, why can't he? My problem is with this commercial:

The message I get from that spot is: "If you wanna smell like a roadhouse juke joint filled with sweaty musicians…McGraw." Is this really the best the advertising whiz kids could come up with?

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