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Christopher Polk, Getty Images
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Taylor Swift and Zac Efron to Appear on ‘Ellen’ Together

With February sweeps about to begin, Ellen DeGeneres is reportedly upping the ante for her daytime talk show, enticing her television audience with appearances from some of the biggest stars — from Christina Aguilera to First Lady Michelle Obama. One joint interview we’re especially excited about is her upcoming chat with Taylor Swift and Zac Efron, who will be talking about their Dr. Seuss film ‘The Lorax,’ which hits theaters on March 2.

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Rick Diamond, Getty Images
Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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Rascal Flatts Tease ‘Spectacular’ Summer 2012 Tour

Rascal Flatts hit the road with Sara Evans and Hunter Hayes this month for their Thaw Out Tour.  Even with all the mayhem of being on the road, the guys in the band say they’re excited about 2012, as this tour is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to all they’ve got on the docket for this year. The trio will drop their eighth studio album, ‘Changed,’ on April 3, before embarking on a summer tour.

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Michael Loccisano, Getty Images
Michael Loccisano, Getty Images
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Rascal Flatts Reveal Plans to Help Neonatal Center at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital

In the past five years, Rascal Flatts have raised more than $3 million for the Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Because of the band’s determination to make a difference, the hospital named their pediatric surgery center the Rascal Flatts Surgery Center. Now, more attached to the hospital’s children than ever, the band is jumping into its next project.

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Adam Bettcher, Getty Images
Adam Bettcher, Getty Images
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Garth Brooks Named Best-Selling Artist of Soundscan Era

With 2012 just beginning to unfold, Billboard and the Nielsen Company compiled their annual year-end music industry report, providing a top 10 list of the best-selling artists of the entire Soundscan era. Sitting atop the list is Garth Brooks with a whopping 68.5 million sales, more than 3 million over the number two artist on the list — The Beatles with 63.3 million.

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Ethan Miller / Jemal Countess, Getty Images
Ethan Miller / Jemal Countess, Getty Images
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Blake Shelton and Kelly Clarkson Sing ‘Don’t You Wanna Stay’ at Ohio Concert

Last night, Blake Shelton surprised his Toledo, Ohio audience by performing Jason Aldean and Kelly Clarkson‘s duet ‘Don’t You Wanna Stay,’ and of course he couldn’t do it alone. As heard in the fan video below, Shelton launched into Aldean’s part and left the audience wondering just how he was going to cover the female vocal for the duet.

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Frazer Harrison / Rick Diamond, Getty Images
Frazer Harrison / Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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2012 ACM Awards New Artist of the Year Semi-Finalists Announced

Today the Academy of Country Music and Great American Country (GAC) unveiled the 2012 semi-finalists for the New Artist of the Year award, which consists of eight artists after the first round of professional voting. This year’s semi-finalist list includes Scotty McCreery, Brantley Gilbert, Hunter Hayes, Thompson Square, JT Hodges, David Nail, Jerrod Niemann and Justin Moore.

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Royce DeGrie / Ethan Miller, Getty Images
Royce DeGrie / Ethan Miller, Getty Images
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Taylor Swift, Jason Aldean to Perform at 2012 Grammys

At last year’s Grammy Awards, it seemed like every other “and the Grammy goes to …” was followed by the name of a country artist. With Miranda Lambert‘s ‘The House That Built Me’ doing well and Lady Antebellum‘s ‘Need You Now’ taking the cake in two major categories, it was a star-studded night for country fans everywhere. As the Staples Center prepares to roll out that red carpet once again, the Recording Academy has just announced the first group of performers for the 2012 Grammys, and nominees Taylor Swift and Jason Aldean are on that list.

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Jason Kempin, Getty Images
Jason Kempin, Getty Images
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Ronnie Dunn Concert Interrupted by Fire Alarm Scare

Ronnie Dunn made quite a lasting impression at his ‘Green Nights’ benefit concert Saturday night at Nashville’s historic Franklin Theatre. Halfway through the Brooks and Dunn hit ‘Ain’t Nothin’ ‘Bout You,’ Dunn and his fans were interrupted by the blaring of the venue’s fire alarms. Though the country star and his band finished their song, they did heed the warning to exit the stage until the venue could be deemed safe and fireless.

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Chris McKay, Getty Images
Chris McKay, Getty Images
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John Rich Reaching Out to Young Oklahoma Mother Who Shot and Killed Intruder

On New Year’s Eve, an 18-year-old Oklahoma mother shot and killed an intruder to protect her 3-month-old baby, after she had just lost her husband to cancer on Christmas day. Now, John Rich of Big and Rich is on a mission to find this young mother and give her some much-needed help.

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Category: Country Music News Tags:
Ethan Miller / Rick Diamond, Getty Images
Ethan Miller / Rick Diamond, Getty Images
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Jason Aldean, Lady Antebellum Have Top-Selling Albums of 2011

Nielsen and Billboard have released their 2011 Music Industry Report, and the findings are quite encouraging, especially for country music fans. With album sales up across the board for the first time in seven years and digital album sales on a surprisingly steady incline as well, Jason Aldean and Lady Antebellum released two of the top-selling records of the year.

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