Gretchen Wilson’s record label Columbia Nashville celebrated the star receiving her GED on June 2. The label hosted a high school graduation party at its Nashville offices complete with Southern barbeque, spiked punch and red velvet cake shaped like one of Wilson’s guitars.
On hand to congratulate Wilson were industry insiders and staff from the Adult Learning Center in Lebanon, Tenn. where she studied for the GED exam.
Label mates Montgomery Gentry even honored Wilson with a surprise gift. The duo, who often work with the University of Phoenix Online Education program, made a donation to Wilson’s charitable foundation that will allow a lucky scholarship recipient to pursue a college degree at the school.
Another star also surprised Wilson with his recent support. When the eighth grade dropout received her high school diploma at a public graduation ceremony at the First Baptist Church in Lebanon, Charlie Daniels showed up to be the guest speaker.
Sugarland sweetens set for fans
Sugarland will release a Deluxe Fan Edition of its third album Love On The Inside on July 22. The set will include 12 regular tracks and 5 bonus tracks, one of which is a live version of the hit “Life In A Northern Town.”
Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush also created special packaging, expanded liner notes, and access to exclusive video downloads for the deluxe release. The regular edition, containing 12 songs, hits stores a week later on July 29.
Jewel busy with first country release
Jewel’s first country album was released last week by the Valory Music Company. She is set to promote Perfectly Clear with a June 17 visit to The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and June 18 stop at Jimmy Kimmel Live.
She will return for a second season as judge and mentor on NBC's Nashville Star alongside John Rich, Jeffrey Steele and host Billy Ray Cyrus, when the show premieres June 9.
Among her other recent appearances was a trip to Texas to tape the GAC-TV special Origins, set to air in July.
Jewel will join Brad Paisley later this month on the Hershey's Presents The Paisley Party Tour.
Swift, Eagles race to 3 million mark
Taylor Swift is about one week away from passing the 3 million scanned albums mark. The race between Swift and the Eagles to reach the triple Platinum goalposts has been almost as close as the Democratic Presidential primary, however it now looks like Swift will cross the line one week ahead of the legendary band.
The Eagles can take solace however, knowing they have sold more units per week than the teenager. Swift’s self-titled debut has been on the chart for 84 weeks, while Long Road Out Of Eden was released 31 weeks ago.
Meanwhile, Country Top 75 album sales dropped 22 percent week-over-week for the period ended June 1.
The Top 200 all-genre list moved in the other direction, climbing 6.1 percent largely on the strength of debuts from the Sex & The City soundtrack (66,000 units) and Usher (442,930 units).
— c 2008 Music Row Communications