Welcome to Feel-Good Friday, a weekly roundup of heartwarming stories, lighthearted videos, and inspiring country news that reminds us all there is still good in the world.
Carrie Underwood’s Gospel album gets release date
“This album is one that I have always wanted to make,” Carrie Underwood says in a two-minute trailer for My Savior. “I wanted to do the traditional songs I grew up singing. The songs on this album are literally songs that I’ve heard since birth.”
My Savior will be released March 26 and includes covers of gospel hymns. Underwood co-produced the album with frequent collaborator David Garcia.
Country artists take part in Bernie Sanders inauguration memes
Following the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on Wednesday (Jan. 20), politician Bernie Sanders quickly became a meme. Sitting cross legged in a mask, overcoat and mittens while holding a manila envelope, Sanders’ image at the inauguration soon made its way to the Internet in the most unusual places: Taylor Swift’s album cover, on the Opry stage with Blake Shelton and Brad Paisley, working out with Carrie Underwood, on an episode of Reba and Songland with Shane McAnally, an album cover of Brothers Osborne and Tanya Tucker and much, much more.
His response? “I was just sitting there trying to keep warm, trying to pay attention to what was going on,” Sanders told Late Night with Seth Meyers Thursday, Jan. 21. “Yeah, I’ve seen them.”
Eric Church reveals three albums are on the way in April
The three album 24-song collection, Heart & Soul, comes from the 28 days Eric Church spent writing in the mountains of North Carolina. Heart and Soul will be released April 16 and April 23, respectively, while & will be available exclusively on vinyl to his Church Choir fan club members.
“I’ve always been intrigued when a song is born in a writer room – there is a magic that happens there,” Church says. “I wanted to put that in the studio form. So, every day, we would write a song in the morning and we would record the song that night. Doing it that way allowed for the songwriters to get involved in the studio process and the musicians to be involved in the creative process. You felt a little bit like you were secretly doing something that was special, and you knew it… You started going, ‘hmm, wait ’til the world finds out about this.’”
Lady A are officially Grand Ole Opry members
Lady A received an invitation from Darius Rucker to become Grand Ole Opry members Thursday evening (Jan. 21) during a taping of NBC’s upcoming Feb. 14 two-hour special Grand Ole Opry: 95 Years of Country Music. The membership is effective immediately and the invitation had the band in tears. Above, Hillary Scott FaceTimes her mother Linda Davis to share the news in an emotional call.
“When my mom @lindadavisnashville left East Texas when she was young, people would ask why she was headed to Nashville and she would say, ‘to play on the Grand Ole Opry!’” Scott captions the clip. “Getting to make this call today was priceless.
“An invitation into the @opry makes country artists like us feel like we will always have a home—a place to celebrate country music, play our songs, visit with our friends and fans… a place to belong,” she continues. “Thank you @opry and thank you @dariusrucker for sharing the good news with us.”
Little Dolly sings “Happy Birthday” to Dolly Parton
Dolly Parton celebrated her 75th birthday on Jan. 19. Countless country artists and celebrities shared their birthday wishes with Dolly, but the cutest message comes from one of Little Big Town’s children. Kimberly Schlapman’s youngest daughter, Dolly, sang to the country legend while on the kitchen table. “This little Dolly calls THE Dolly ‘My Parton,’” Schlapman captions the adorable clip. “She adores her and wanted to sing happy birthday to her today.”