COUNTRY April 21, 2015

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DATEBOOK: APRIL 21, 2015

This is day 111 of 2015. There are 254 days remaining.

BIRTHDAYS

• Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain is 89

• Charles Grodin is 80

• Iggy Pop is 68

• Tony Danza (Who’s the Boss, Taxi) is 64

• Andie MacDowell (Groundhog Day) is 57

• Robert Smith of The Cure is 56

• James McAvoy is 36

IT HAPPENED TODAY

• 1789: John Adams was sworn in as the first vice president of the United States.

• 1918: Baron Manfred von Richthofen, the German ace known as the “Red Baron,” was killed in action during World War I.

• 1952: Secretary’s Day (now Administrative Professionals’ Day) was first celebrated.

• 1977: The musical “Annie” opened on Broadway.

• 1980: Rosie Ruiz, the first woman to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon, was disqualified when officials discovered she had jumped into the race about a mile from the finish.

• 1982: Rollie Fingers of the Milwaukee Brewers became the first pitcher to record 300 saves.

• 1986: After massive hoopla, reporter Geraldo Rivera hosted a live TV special to open a sealed vault linked to Al Capone in Chicago’s Lexington Hotel. Except for a few bottles, the vault was empty.

• 1989: In Beijing, around 100,000 students gathered in Tiananmen Square to commemorate Chinese reform leader Hu Yaobang.

• 1993: Deputies near Cudahy, Wisconsin, arrested two men for stealing a large electronic game machine from a bar. The machine was so heavy, their pickup truck got stuck in the mud in the tavern parking lot. One of the men called the sheriff’s office and asked for a tow.

• 1996: The world’s highest roller-coaster opened in Las Vegas with a track 1,149 feet up. It circled the new Stratosphere hotel.

• 1998: While Microsoft billionaire Bill Gates presented his new Windows 98 computer operating system to a Chicago convention group, it crashed.

• 2003: A gym exclusively for dogs opened in Santiago, Chile. The gym offered treadmills, personal trainer services, a dog beauty parlor and courses for dog-owners to learn how to prepare their pets for exhibitions.

• 2005: An Australian undertaker began offering a beer-as-you-bury service to take some of the sting out of bereavement. The company, in Melbourne, introducing a minibus — complete with a mini-bar, coffee and a DVD player — in which up to 12 mourners could ride with the coffin to the cemetery.

• 2006: U.S. oil prices hit a record high, topping $75 a barrel, and the cost of regular gasoline at the pump soared to more than $3 gallon in some parts of the nation.

• 2009: A wooden putter which was used to take the final winning shot in the 1939 British Open was discovered dumped in a garage in the UK. Golfer Garry Bingham had stashed the club amid his clutter 20 years before not realizing its value. The antique putter was worth over $22,000.

SPECIAL EVENTS

• Kindergarten Day

• Bulldogs are Beautiful Day

• Chocolate-Covered Cashews Day

UPCOMING

• May 10: Mother’s Day (Sunday)

• May 25: Memorial Day (Monday)

• June 21: Father’s Day (Sunday)

More holidays

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NUMBER FOR THE DAY

100 million: Dollars the city of Los Angeles spends annually on homelessness.

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NEWS ATTACK!

A new study finds that a straight guy will gamble more money if a really good looking guy is nearby. [What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas along with you and your super hot but completely platonic boyfriend.]

The latest trailer for the movie Jurassic World has been released, and as you might expect, it features a giant dinosaur eating people. [But it’s not eating because it’s hungry but to fill an inner emotional emptiness.]

American Airlines is reducing ticket prices to all 50 states. [It’s  a great time to be a fugitive.]

Norway announced that in 2017 it will eliminate FM radio. [And it will also order Steely Dan to change the name of its song.]

China has banned hot models in sexy outfits from working at the Shanghai Auto Show. [Because you know how car guys hate, hate, hate that sort of thing.]

Tim Tebow will become the Eagles’ fourth string quarterback. [So, he’ll get into the game in the event of a tsunami or zombie apocalypse.]

Leaked emails reveal the behind-the-scenes secrets of the Dr. Oz show. [According to the emails, the good doctor blows half the budget ordering takeout from the rib place across the street.]

The Secret Service arrested a White House fence jumper. [It’s nice to have the Secret Service back on this side of the law.]

The FBI lab has been found to have been giving incorrect forensic testimony for years. [Instead of a fully equipped modern lab investigators found a Ouija board and a Magic 8 Ball.]

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NEWS & NUGGETS

FACEBOOK TO USERS: HOW DO YOU PRONOUNCE YOUR NAME? _ Some Facebook users are being prompted to provide the proper pronunciations of their names. Users who see the prompt are asked: “Help people know the right way to say your name. How do you pronounce your name?” Three options are provided for both users’ first and last names, as well as the ability for users to add their own pronunciations.

FB icon Start it on Facebook, take it to the phones: How do people always mess up saying your name?

YOU CAN SERVE YOUR FUTURE EX WITH DIVORCE PAPERS ON FACEBOOK _ In New York City, a Supreme Court Justice recently ruled that a Brooklyn nurse is “granted permission to serve defendant with the divorce summons using a private message through Facebook.” This means Ellanora Baidoo is now allowed to serve her hard-to-track-down husband with divorce papers via Facebook message. The judge said: “This transmittal shall be repeated by plaintiff’s attorney to defendant once a week for three consecutive weeks or until acknowledged” by her soon-to-be-ex.

… The ruling says the “post office has no forwarding address for him, there is no billing address linked to his prepaid cell phone, and the Department of Motor Vehicles has no record of him.” Baidoo’s lawyer tried hiring a private detective but couldn’t find her husband to serve him divorce papers.

ONE WORLD TRADE CENTER ELEVATORS SHOW EVO OF NYC SKYLINE _ The new one World Trade Center will finally open up to the public on May 29. For $32, you can ride in one of 5 “sky pods” to the top of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere in under a minute and experience 360-degree views of the city. During the ride, you will be presented with an animated video showing New York as it has evolved throughout history.

… From the moment the doors close until they reopen 47 seconds later on the 102nd floor, a seemingly three-dimensional time-lapse panorama will unfold on three walls of the elevator cabs, as if one were witnessing 515 years of history unfolding at the tip of Manhattan Island. • VIDEO

SHOES GROW FIVE SIZES TO KEEP UP WITH KIDS WHO WEAR THEM _ One entrepreneur has dreamt up a simple fix to an age-old problem: the constant need to buy new shoes for kids who outgrow them just months later. Kenton Lee and his team invented sandals that match the pace of children’s growth using a system of buckles, buttons and pegs, which expand the shoes in length by up to five sizes. Build to last at least five years, they are made out of durable leather, metal snaps and compressed rubber.

… According to Lee’s website The Shoe That Grows, the shoe is designed for those in impoverished areas who can’t afford to buy shoes.

SCIENTISTS FIND NEW SPECIES OF FROG, IT LOOKS LIKE KERMIT _ Photos of a “newly discovered and described” translucent species of frog are going viral because media outlets say the creature looks like Kermit the Frog. Officials with the Costa Rican Amphibian Research Center claim they found six specimens of a type of glass frog that has been called Hyalinobatrachium dianae (in the Talamanca Mountains).

THE REASON YOU’RE BUYING AN APPLE WATCH: MAGIC 8 BALL _ While plenty of imitations are already available on mobile phones, Mattel has announced it will release an official Magic 8 Ball app for iPhone and Apple Watch devices, based on the classic toy of the same name. The app gives users a way to reveal humorous answers to their most lighthearted or serious questions. Once players have asked the Magic 8 Ball a question, they can shake their iPhone to shake the ball, or tap their Apple Watch to reveal the answer. The answers can then be shared with friends via social media.

AFTER GOING OUT TO CONQUER FEARS, WOMAN FALLS IN MANHOLE _ An agoraphobic grandmother in England says that she may never go outside again after her last attempt left her with a broken leg and a legitimate reason to stay indoors. Janet Faal reportedly left her home for the third time in a decade as part of the 57-year-old woman’s therapy to treat her phobia and face her fears. But Janet suffered two black eyes and a broken leg after she fell into a manhole that she unwittingly opened.

… Janet was with her friend while out on a drive. During their drive, they stumbled upon a wooden pallet that was in the car’s way. It was then that Janet took it upon herself to remove the pallet that things took a ironically tragic turn. She kicked the pallet over with her foot, but was not looking at it while asking her friend if it was out of the way well enough for her to back her car out of the parking area. When she had intended to spin around, she did not notice that the pallet was actually covering up a manhole. To her shock, she fell right in with one leg and she smashed her face down on the pallet.

… Now she is afraid that her agoraphobia may get worse, since she was so badly injured on her third outing in a decade. She was left in the manhole for at least an hour while waiting for paramedics to rescue her, which probably only made things worse.

KRAFT CHANGES ITS MAC & CHEESE RECIPE _ Kraft says it will remove artificial colors and flavors from its original recipe Macaroni & Cheese dinners as U.S. customers increasingly demand quality ingredients. The new and improved Mac & Cheese will hit stores starting in January.

SOLUTION TO CALIFORNIA’S DROUGHT? _ Need rain? The residents of Bangladesh say you should perform mock marriages with frogs. One farmer says after two frogs were “married,” it rained within hours.

PRINCESS DIANA’S WILL REVEALED _ It’s been almost 18 years since Princess Diana’s tragic death at age 36, and now for the first time, the late royal’s will has been revealed. Diana left close to $30 million to her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry. She also instructed that her mother, Frances Shand Kydd, should be consulted about the boys’ education. Diana also left $80,000 tax-free dollars to her butler and confidant Paul Burrell.

EARTHWORMS RAIN DOWN ON NORWAY _ Thousands of earthworms rained down on parts of Norway, leaving scientist baffled. Biology teacher Karstein Erstad made the discovery as he was skiing in the mountains outside the coastal city of Bergen. At first he thought they crawled atop the snow from the ground beneath, but then realized the snow was too deep. Since the incident, reports have come in from other areas of the country. Experts suggest the worms may have been lifted into the air by a weather system and blown miles from their original location.

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WACKY-BUT-TRUE

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: CONSTRUCTION WORKER CAUGHT STEALING FOUND DINOSAUR EGGS _ A construction worker tried to steal two dinosaur egg fossils discovered at a building site in China. An excavating-machine operator discovered 43 fossilized eggs on the site while digging a drainage ditch. The discovery of the dino-eggs attracted a crowd, which helped stop a worker who tried to make off with two complete fossils.

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: JORDAN OR LEBRON? MAN CHARGED IN FIGHT OVER BETTER BASKETBALL PLAYER _ Police say an argument over whether Michael Jordan or LeBron James is a better basketball player ended in a Pennsylvania man’s arrest. 22-year-old Daniel Mondelice was arrested early Saturday after fighting with another man over whether Air Jordan or King James reigns supreme. It wasn’t clear which player Mondelice backed.

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: ANDROID VS. IPHONE DEBATE ESCALATES INTO STABBING AND CAR THEFT _ Police in Tulsa (Oklahoma) responded to an apartment complex around 1AM to investigate at least one report of a bloody person roaming around the parking lot. Upon investigation, police found two roommates, each in a state of distress. One of the roommates told police that his wounds resulted from an argument between the two that started over which of them had the better smartphone, Apple or Android. The argument ended with the roommates stabbing each other with broken glass bottles. Care to guess how this story ends? Yep, police say alcohol was a factor in the argument.

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: NAKED MAN REPORTEDLY CHASES MAGAZINE SALESMAN _ On Friday Oklahoma City police responded to a call at an apartment complex. According to police, a salesman was invited into Colin Maher’s apartment to discuss buying magazine subscriptions. The salesman was in the apartment for about five minutes when Maher stripped naked. Maher asked the salesman if he would “do things to him,” which shocked and frightened the salesman. The salesman said once he left the apartment, Maher repeatedly called his cellphone and started to follow him around the apartment complex — while naked.

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ON TELEVISION

HELL’S KITCHEN (8p ET, FOX) – New. 11 chefs compete.

THE FLASH (8p ET, CW) – New. A new iZombie follows.

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS (8p ET, BRAVO) – New. Followed by a new episode of The Real Housewives of New York City.

THE VOICE (8p ET, NBC) – Two artists are eliminated.

NBA BASKETBALL (8p ET, TNT) – Celtics at Cavs followed by Mavericks at Rockets.

NHL HOCKEY (8p ET, USA) – Capitals at Islanders followed by Canucks at Flames.

MARVEL’S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. (9p ET, ABC) – New

DEADLIEST CATCH (9p ET, Discovery) – New

19 KIDS AND COUNTING (9p ET, TLC) – Jessa and Ben are off on their romantic honeymoon, traveling to Paris, Rome and Venice as newlyweds.

CSI: CYBER (10p ET, CBS) – New. NCIS and NCIS: New Orleans are repeats.

CHICAGO FIRE (10p ET, NBC) – New

INSIDE AMY SCHUMER (10:30p ET, Comedy Central) – Season premiere. A new Tosh.0 airs before.

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ENTERTAINMENT

NEW JURASSIC WORLD TRAILER IS OUT _ A full-length Jurassic World trailer came out Monday and it’s a winner. The original, shorter, trailer shows us some Chris Pratt and a lot of scared park visitors, but the new full-length trailer is good stuff, and it reveals a bit more of the plot. But not too much. The movie opens June 12. • VIDEO

STAR WARS FAN ASKED GEORGE LUCAS IF JEDI CAN MARRY _ Seven-year-old Star Wars fan Colin Gilpatric and his mother Peggy sent a letter to George Lucas asking that he allow Jedi to get married. Little Colin was very excited when he received a fantastic response, as well as a lot of cool Star Wars gifts. Colin wrote: Dear George Lucas: I don’t like that a Jedi cannot get married. I want to get married without becoming a Sith. Please change the rule. Love Colin.

… Someone at Lucasfilm wrote back: Hello, Colin. Thank you so much for writing to us with your question. It sounds like the Force is strong with you, and you are showing great wisdom by asking your question. To be a Jedi is to truly know the value of friendship, of compassion, and of loyalty, and these are values important in a marriage. The Sith think inward, only of themselves. When you find someone that you can connect to in a selfless way, then you are on the path of the light, and the dark side will not take hold of you. With this goodness in your heart, you can be married. We enclosed a few gifts that we hope you enjoy. Thank you again for writing to us. May the Force Be With You!

EMPIRE TV SHOW CANCELLED? _ If fans of the Fox TV show Empire Google the words “Empire cancelled,” they’ll be met with a bunch of results from Tumblr pages and other websites claiming the show had been cancelled even after being renewed for a second season. Ratings for Empire went through the roof during its first season and finale, so for Fox to cancel the show would be ridiculous. The rumors of Empire’s cancellations are attributable to a fake website, the same one that has claimed lately that Krispy Kreme was giving away free donuts, that a woman’s lips exploded after doing the Kylie Jenner challenge, and falsely stated that Martin Lawrence had been found dead in a hotel.

BOBBI KRISTINA BROWN STILL IN COMA _ We’ve heard that the Brown and Houston families aren’t agreeing on much since Bobbi Kristina Brown has been in a coma following a tragic incident at her Atlanta home — but now it seems the two sides can’t even decide if she’s still in a coma or not. Bobby Brown told a concert audience the other night that “Bobbi is awake. She’s watching me.” And Brown’s sister, Tina, told her Facebook page that Bobbi was out of her coma and was going to be okay.

… But a source tells TMZ neither is true: “She’s in the exact same condition she was in when she went into the facility.”

ROSANNE BARR GOING BLIND _ Comedian and actress Roseanne Barr is going blind, and she’s opening up about what it is she’s currently going through. Some fans could tell that something was up given her unique appearance at the Tribeca Film Festival over the weekend. The Daily Beast talked with Roseanne Barr, who says that she has glaucoma and macular degeneration. She reveals that her vision is closing in significantly already, but her doctors haven’t given her a specific timeframe regarding when she might completely lose her sight.

… The actress says that her father had macular degeneration as well and she’s trying to “enjoy vision as much as possible — y’know, living it up” for as long as she can. Part of that living it up, she discusses, is embracing marijuana.

THE X-FILES BEAMS BACK MITCH PILEGGI AS WALTER SKINNER _ Mitch Pileggi will return as Walter Skinner for the final six episode season of The X-Files. The cult series finished its original nine season run in 2002, with the film The X-Files: I Want to Believe following in 2008. David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson have officially signed on to return. Series creator Chris Carter will return to lead the final episodes, which he will write and executive produce.

TEENS ARE DOING THE ‘KYLIE JENNER LIP CHALLENGE’ _ Over the past week, teenagers have been participating in something called the #kyliejennerlipchallenge. The challenge sees teens placing bottles or jars over the mouth and sucking in the air, causing their lips to swell. • VIDEO

CHANNING TATUM GETS HELP FINDING BAG FROM TWITTER _ Channing Tatum lost his bag in a New York City taxi and retrieved it with the help of his millions of Twitter followers. He tweeted his problem and with over 7 million followers, he received a response: “Dropped off at 42nd street in New York City and left my bag in the cab!”

… To show how serious he was about finding the bag, he set up a special email address for tips on its location. Can you guess what happened? Yep, he got his bag.

LEGO BATMAN MOVIE SET FOR RELEASE FEBRUARY 10, 2017 _ Warner Bros. Pictures has confirmed the release dates for three of its upcoming LEGO animated features. The next LEGO film to open will be the LEGO Batman movie, which is coming to theaters earlier than planned: February 10, 2017. Ninjago, which had been scheduled for release in Fall 2016, won’t be ready by then and is being pushed back to September 22, 2017.

… The LEGO Movie Sequel, the followup to the smash hit The LEGO Movie, is opening one week earlier than originally planned, now being released on May 18, 2018.

JOHNNY DEPP IS MISSING? _ Johnny Depp is reportedly missing — or at least that is what multiple media sources are reporting. As shocking and unbelievable as that sounds, there are no reports to indicate that it’s not true. Vanity Fair is one of the credible sources reporting that the actor may have disappeared. So where is Johnny Depp, and why would he go missing? The actor was supposed to be in Australia to film the latest Pirates of the Caribbean movie. However, he reportedly missed his flight — which really isn’t a reason for alarm. What has caused alarm, however, is the fact that Depp has not reached out to anybody in Oz, so they’re all left scratching their heads and wondering where he is.

… There are also reports that people are a little angry with him, and at least one person has referred to the aging actor as unprofessional for pulling a no-show and falling out of contact.

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AUDIO

Visit the Pro Audio page for thousands of archived audio cuts.

MONDAY

A collection of clips relating to Monday for show intros, bumpers, etc. » click for download page

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BITS & BREAKS

NEW ON DVD TODAY

Taken 3

Cake

Escape From New York – Collector’s Edition

What’s Happening: The Complete Series

ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONALS WEEK

Since this is Administrative Professionals Week, you bosses should know: The correct way to spell “praise” is without the ‘P’!

DOWNLOAD THIS APP!

There’s something extremely satisfying about finishing a video game quest and receiving your virtual reward, so a new task management app called Quest wants to apply that same idea to your boring old chores. By turning each item on your to-do list into a tiny 8-bit adventure, Quest transforms your chores into a game of sorts, allowing you to complete your tasks the same as you would a video game quest. • LINK

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FUN & GAMES

TRIVIA: Twenty years ago (1995) as part of a huge survey of college students it was revealed that the hot dating activity was what? (Bowling)

TRIVIA: Homes in Hawaii have these more than any other U.S. state. (Rooftop solar-power. 12% of Hawaiian homes have them.)

TIME COP

It’s time for you to play time cop and catch which of the following events did NOT happen in 1987:

• Senator Gary Hart dropped out of the race for president after reports of an affair surfaced.

• At the Academy Awards, American Beauty won Best Picture. (2000)

• While visiting the Berlin Wall, President Reagan told the Soviets to tear it down.

• TV evangelist Jim Bakker resigned as head of PTL Ministries after admitting to an affair.

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JOKE OF THE DAY

While driving along a main street in a busy city, a lady was stopped by a policeman who was spot-checking cars. After testing the brakes, lights and horn, the officer asked to see her driver’s license. “It says here ‘corrective lenses.’ Why aren’t you wearing glasses,” the officer demanded. “I’ve got contacts,” replied the driver. The officer exploded, “I don’t care WHO you know. You’re supposed to be wearing glasses!”

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VIDEO OF THE DAY

Guy turned his boring office job into fake GoPro commercial.

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IMAGE OF THE DAY

Bummer. Peter was nice guy.

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LAST MINUTE ITEMS

• Twisted Wave is a great audio recorder and editor for iOS devices. It also runs in a web browser.

• Hiking from Mexico to Canada: before and after.

• Where the bombs fell on London.

• Dashcams of live storm chasers.

• How to get free Dropbox space.

• There are 320 million people in the United States. How many have your name?

• Wear a poo emoji button-down shirt.

• Guys, we found your Pinterest page: The Man Cave Grill Master’s Grills

• How to remove a wasp infestation with a shop vac.

• This is sand.

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COUNTRY DATEBOOK: APRIL 21, 2015

• 1974: DOLLY PARTON left the Porter Wagoner Show.

• 1978: B.J. THOMAS topped the country chart with (Hey, Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song.

• 1987: DWIGHT YOAKAM’s album Hillbilly Deluxe was released.

• 1995: BROOKS & DUNN scored a number one hit with Little Miss Honky Tonk.

• 1998: STEVE WARINER’s album Burnin’ The Roadhouse Down was released. It included the number one hit Holes In The Floor Of Heaven.

• 2006: TIM MCGRAW and FAITH HILL kicked off their Soul2Soul II tour in Columbus, Ohio.

• 2011: TOBY KEITH arrived in Kuwait at the outset of a USO tour that has him playing for American troops in the Middle East.

• 2012: DIERKS BENTLEY celebrated Record Store Day by performing The Rolling Stones’ Dead Flowers with Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready at Easy Street Records in Seattle.

• 2012: KEITH URBAN became a member of the Grand Ole Opry.

• 2012: SCOTTY MCCREERY attended his senior prom in North Carolina.

• 2013: LEE BRICE married Sara Reeveley in Branson, Missouri.

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COUNTRY AUDIO

Visit the country audio archive for over 2,000 audio cuts.

Zac Brown of ZAC BROWN BAND on his favorite TV shows. » go to download page

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COUNTRY MUSIC NEWS

SAM HUNT’s Take Your Time has become only the 16th song to spend at least ten weeks in the top spot on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Take Your Time logs the longest stay at No. 1 since JASON ALDEAN’s Burnin’ It Down did it for 14 weeks in 2014. The record: FLORIDA GEORGIA LINE’s Cruise, which dominated for 24 weeks beginning in December 2012.

SAM HUNT’s album Montevallo, released last fall, has achieved gold status for sales of more than 500,000 copies, making him the fastest male solo country artist to achieve that feat since 2012.

The 50th ACM Awards powered CBS to a ratings win Sunday night, attracting 15.8 million viewers. That’s up from last year’s 14 million viewers and marks a 17-year high for the show.

TIM MCGRAW AND FAITH HILL were noticeably absent from Sunday night’s ACM Awards, but they had a pretty good reason for skipping out. They went to New York for another red carpet event — the premiere of Tim’s new movie, Dixieland, which made its debut on Sunday at the Tribeca Film Festival.

The tabloid OK! claims MIRANDA LAMBERT and BLAKE SHELTON are “gearing up” for a baby. The tabloid’s sources claim the following: “The couple has been through rough patches here and there, but now Blake has slowed down his partying and is prioritizing his wife and future family above all else.”

ALABAMA, BROOKS & DUNN and RASCAL FLATTS have received honors from the Guinness Book of World Records. Alabama has won the Academy of Country Music’s Entertainer of the Year the most consecutive times at five — from 1981-1985. Brooks & Dunn have won the ACM Vocal Duo award the most times, 16, and the most consecutive times, 8. Finally, Rascal Flatts won the ACM Group of the Year award seven consecutive times, a record for the most and most consecutive times (2003-2009).

ERIC CHURCH’s The Outsiders Tour is tops on Billboard’s Top Tours Recap. Eric has played 60 cities and sold more than 725,000 tickets on the tour, which still has 20 dates remaining.

KENNY CHESNEY will visit NBC’s The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon tomorrow night (Wednesday) for a performance.

WILLIE NELSON announced Monday that he’s launching his own cannabis brand, Willie’s Reserve, which will reflect his “longstanding experience and his commitment to regulated, natural and high quality strains of marijuana in U.S. legal markets.” The product will initially be grown, distributed and sold by local businesses in Colorado and Washington, becoming available in additional markets when state regulations allow.

… Willie said: “I am looking forward to working with the best growers in Colorado and Washington to make sure our product is the best on the market.” He said his brand will be a collaboration between the himself and “some of the best master growers in America.”

RANDY TRAVIS is married. The country legend married Mary Davis in Texas on March 21.

On his website RANDY TRAVIS penned a personal letter to his fans after appearing at the 50th Academy of Country Music Awards. It reads: “Hello, my friends. It was an amazing gift to feel all the love from you in Dallas at the Academy of Country Music Awards. It has been a hard-fought and miraculous journey since my stroke two years ago, and I have gained a greater understanding of God’s grace, and how quickly events can change us. Words can never express my gratitude to those who continue to believe in me, pray for me and keep me lifted up in thought and deed. The kind cards and heartfelt letters of testimony and encouragement brought me through the darkest of days. Mary read each and every one of them to me, and I felt the love and concern being sent my way; and, I gathered strength from this. None of us are worthy of the immense outpouring of support shown to me, and I consider each of my fans, a friend. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

… The letter finishes with, “As I work through music/speech/occupational/physical therapy, it is my hope that my songs of yesterday continue to touch your life in some way.”

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DATEBOOK: APRIL 22, 2015

This is day 112 of 2015. There are 253 days remaining.

BIRTHDAYS

• Charlotte Rae (Mrs. Garrett on The Facts of Life) is 89

• Estelle Harris (George Costanza’s mom on Seinfeld) is 87

• Glen Campbell is 79

• Jack Nicholson is 78

• Peter Frampton is 65

• Ryan Stiles (The Drew Carey Show) is 56

• Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Watchmen, Grey’s Anatomy) is 49

• Sheryl Lee (Twin Peaks) is 48

• TV personality Sherri Shepherd is 48.

• Amber Heard (The Rum Diary, Drive Angry) is 29 – Married Johnny Depp in February.

IT HAPPENED TODAY

• 1864: Congress authorized the use of the phrase “In God We Trust” on U.S. coins.

• 1876: The Boston Red Stockings defeated the Philadelphia Athletics 6-5 in the first National League Baseball game.

• 1889: At high noon, thousands rush to claim land in the Land Run of 1889. Within hours the cities of Oklahoma City and Guthrie were formed with populations of at least 10,000.

• 1970: The first Earth Day was celebrated.

• 1976: Barbara Walters became network television’s first news anchorwoman when she accepted ABC’s offer to co-anchor the evening news with Harry Reasoner.

• 1993: The Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. was dedicated.

• 1998: Disney’s Animal Kingdom opened at Walt Disney World near Orlando, Florida.

• 2002: A Swedish woman swallowed her toothbrush while trying to scratch an itch in the back of her throat. Doctors in Stockholm found it lodged in her esophagus, just above the entrance to the 26-year-old’s stomach. Under a local anesthetic, they managed to remove the toothbrush with a remote-controlled miniature grip. She recovered at home after 20 hours in the hospital. Doctors gave her back the toothbrush.

• 2004: Former NFL star Pat Tillman, after turning down a lucrative contract with the Arizona Cardinals to join the Army rangers, was killed in Afghanistan. The U.S. military said later he was a victim of friendly fire.

• 2008: A Malaysian cop was arrested after he allegedly broke into a Mercedes Benz to steal its stereo but then dozed off on its luxurious seat. The police officer allegedly was high on drugs at the time.

SPECIAL EVENTS

• Earth Day. NASA is suggesting we mark the occasion by posting pictures of our favorite places on Earth and tagging them with #noplacelikehome on social media.

… As if to celebrate, the universe is giving us an Earth Day present in the form of the peak of the Lyrid Meteor showers. You’ll be able to watch it live online if you’re not in a great place to view it.

• Girl Scout Leaders Day

• Jelly Bean Day

UPCOMING

• May 10: Mother’s Day (Sunday)

• May 25: Memorial Day (Monday)

• June 21: Father’s Day (Sunday)

More holidays