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Eva Cassidy's "Simply Eva" Enters U.K. Chart

SIMPLY EVA, the newest collection from the late singer Eva Cassidy, entered the U.K. music charts at #6 today (Sunday, February 6), ten years after her SONGBIRD album reached Number One in Britain. After the first week of release in the U.S., SIMPLY EVA entered the Billboard Folk Chart at #5 and was the 2nd best-selling album at the Borders Books and Music national chain. SIMPLY EVA, from independent Blix Street Records, comprises 12 acoustic versions of previously-unheard guitar and vocal only performances.

The songs on SIMPLY EVA are alternative acoustic versions of known Cassidy songs with the exception of the redefining performance of "San Francisco Bay Blues," which is already picking up radio airplay in the U.S. These "Eva only" recordings are straight from the original tape without any alteration.

Born in Washington, DC, Eva Cassidy recorded and performed in the area for several years until her untimely death from melanoma in 1996. She left behind a small, but impeccable body of recordings that have been meticulously curated and compiled by Blix Street Records with the support of her parents, Barbara and Hugh Cassidy.

In April, 1998, Blix Street posthumously released SONGBIRD, a collection chosen primarily from two other Cassidy albums, LIVE AT BLUES ALLEY and EVA BY HEART. It featured Sting's "Fields of Gold" and Eva's unqualified signature performance of "Over the Rainbow," the video of which triggered Eva's rise to #1 on the U.K. charts in March, 2001. Eva Cassidy became an "overnight sensation." By the end of that year, the album had been certified triple-platinum in England (for sales of more than 900,000 sold) and gold in the U.S. (more than 500,000 units); the album, now six times platinum in England and platinum in the U.S., eventually hit No. 1 on Billboard's Internet Albums chart and topped the publication's Pop Catalog survey for 32 weeks.


Eva Cassidy has now sold over eight million records and achieved an unprecedented three consecutive posthumous U.K. No. 1 albums as well as the No.1 single, "What A Wonderful World" (a posthumous duet with Katie Melua).

Marty Stuart Preps For UK Tour!

RAMMY nominee Marty Stuart will kick off his UK Tour in Glasgow, Scotland on Jan. 28.  The tour comes on the heels of praise from UK press for his album GHOST TRAIN (THE STUDIO B SESSIONS), with the BBC noting that Stuart has “a complete understanding of what makes good country music sound right, and just enough rebelliousness to keep it fresh,” while the UK Independent calls GHOST TRAIN “the best country album of this year.”

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UK TOUR DATES:

1/28    Glasgow, Scotland
1/29    Gateshead, England
1/30    Nottingham, England
1/31    Milton Keynes, England
2/1      London, England
2/2      Dublin, Ireland

The album, including two GRAMMY nominated tracks for “Best Country Collaboration With Vocals” for “I Run To You,” and “Best Country Instrumental” for “Hummingbyrd,” also landed on several year-end lists including NPR’s “Ken Tucker’s Top 10 of 2010,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Philadelphia Inquirer, CMT.com, No Depression, Toronto Star and The 9513.

From Glasgow, Scotland to Glasgow, Kentucky, Stuart has added a slew of dates across the US following his UK stint.  For tour dates and ticket information, visit www.martystuart.net.

Jake Shimabukuro to Perform with Bette Midler for Queen of England

Jake Shimabukuro, ukulele virtuoso from Hawaii, will perform his arrangement of the Beatles’ tune “In My Life” with Bette Midler for The Royal Variety Performance 2009 in Blackpool, England.

The Performance is presented annually in aid of the Entertainment Artistes’ Benevolent Fund (the EABF), whose patron is Her Majesty The Queen.  Acts lined up to appear include: Oscar winner Whoopi Goldberg, Canadian singer and Grammy Award winner Michael Buble, teen superstar Miley Cyrus, and many more.

Midler, a multi-award winning performer also from Hawaii, has followed her fellow islander’s career and loves Jake’s arrangement of “In My Life,” a Beatles cover that appeared on Jake’s 2008 release, My Life.

“I was shocked to hear that Bette Midler knew my music.  I’ve been a huge fan of hers for many years,” said Jake.  “She’s like a queen of entertainment.  And to be performing with her for the Queen of England… it’s a bit too much for me.  I’m just so honored.”

The performance will be Jake’s first time to England and second time to Europe after touring earlier this year in Stockholm, Sweden, Pori, Finland, Nice & Paris, France, and San Sebastian, Spain.

Blackpool’s legendary Opera House is the largest theatre in the UK outside of London with a seating capacity of 3000.  The star-studded spectacle will take place on Monday, December 7 and be screened on ITV1, in the UK, later that month.  It will be produced by ITV Studios, the makers of the 2007 Royal Variety Performance, which attracted an impressive 9 million viewers.

The money raised from this event will help to maintain Brinsworth House in Twickenham, Middlesex – the entertainers’ retirement and nursing home which is run by the EABF.