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Don’t forget to hug…

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your friends and family.

I just found out that a friend’s father passed away and I just wanted to remind you to all hug and kiss your  friends and families every chance you get.   You never know when you might get that chance again.  These days, we are all so busy and rushed and it just hit me like a ton of bricks that we need to take a minute and appreciate what we have and who we have around us.  I am getting married in 36 hours and have over 100 hundred family members in town for the wedding.  I spent last night thanking each one of them for taking time out of their busy/rushed lives to celebrate with me.  Maybe they are here because Reba may sing at the wedding, but nonetheless, they are here and that’s an opportunity to give them a hug and tell them that I love them.

This past year my family has been slapped in the face with several un-welcomed surprises and it made us all realize that we need to live in the now and let everyone else around us know that we care.  Sometimes you need to lean on someone else for support and if you don’t have friends and family there to lean on, it can get really lonely really quick.

“Here comes the bride….No, REALLY…here she comes.  I’ve got to go.  Wish me luck!

 

Shane

Calling all country music fans…

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Some of you may have already seen my latest project on www.Youtube.com. For those that have not, its called ‘Music City 411′ and it doesn’t suck. Basically, I am getting inside the music industry in Nashville (aka Music City) and bringing all of the latest, most interesting country music news to you.  I have included a direct link to the videos here on this blog post, but its also on the left side of my HOME page here on the site.

CLICK HERE

‘Must have experience’

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I just got back from speaking to the students at Flagler College about my career, the television industry and a whole bunch of other stuff.  Part of me feels bad for the students as they get set to graduate and are terrified to step into the ‘real world’.  However, part of me has zero sympathy for them as they have resources that were unheard of in my college days.  Nowadays…Facebook, Twitter, Flipcams, webcams, youtube, ipads, iPhones and every other ‘i’ device are tools provided to them that can give them the experience they need to get that first job.  I mean, we barely had the internet when I was in school and def. didn’t have smart phones that can shoot and edit video clips on the fly.
I spoke with many of the students individually.  Some of them wanted to know if I had ever met their favorite country artist, others handed me their resumes and one of them asked if he could interview me.  BINGO!  That’s doing something.  Not that asking me 5 questions is going to get him a job, but if he goes to a potential employer with some content, he instantly gets the attention of said employer.  Unless, of course he/she is a TLC fan. :-)
Many of the students expressed concern over getting internships as they get ready to graduate.   I said the same thing to all of them, “Don’t wait for it to come to you.  GO GET IT!”  When I was a 21 year old college senior at Flagler, I showed up on the doorstep of a tv station and ended up being offered an internship because I had the chops to do so.  In this business its all about your energy and willingness to think outside the box.  Me hand delivering a resume that barely included anything other than my name and address was that outside the box attitude that got me the gig.  Its not always about the words on the page, but rather your drive.
My advice to all of those students at Flagler and every other college is to “Just Do Something”.  Shoot short videos of yourself in your dorm rooms doing what college kids do.  Start writing a blog about things that interest you and things that you have a passion for.  Trust me, someone will find it interesting and tell someone else about it.  Write down your ideas.  Volunteer your time in a venue where you can learn something about something.  Just do something!  I have been fortunate to have had some success in what is the most competitive industry, but I regret not doing more things that I did have control of.  We have those resources at our finger tips and there is no excuse for not utilizing them.

Ah, The Academy Awards…

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Well…I’m not sure where to start, but last night’s Academy Awards were awkward to say the least; starting with the red carpet interviews.

I am typically a big supporter of Ryan Seacrest and my friends at E!, but the pre-show interviews were painful to watch and seemed incredibly awkward. Giuliana and Kelly giving their fashion advice from a sky box seemed disconnected because we all knew they were looking at monitors and several times were talking over one another and the dress that we were seeing was not the dress they were talking about. Ryan’s interviews felt like he was being given the facts about the actors while he was talking to them and it seemed like they picked up on it. Or maybe Hollywood doesn’t really care that Ryan Seacrest is interviewing them. He’s funny, but last night seemed to be a little bit off.

I did catch the ABC red carpet coverage from 7-7:30 and that was just as werid, if not more so. Why is Tim Gunn interviewing actors and actresses on the Red Carpet? I assume its because he is the host of a ‘fashion’ driven reality show, but it didn’t make sense to me. Specifically speaking, he started the Justin Timberlake interview with ‘we’ve been watching and it took you an hour to get over to us,’ Ah, what? Justin didn’t know what to say and it went downhill from there.

Now, the show itself was like a scene out of that Denzel movie. (that wasn’t nominated)…a TRAIN WRECK! It was all over the place; starting with the hosts. There were no surprise winners, lackluster musical performances and the teaming of Anne Hathaway and James Franco was an epic fail. Actually, Anne held her own and carried the show, but Franco seemed like he just walked off the set of ‘Pineapple Express 2′. (in other words…stoned). If you noticed, he rarely addressed the camera or Hathaway. Many times he stood with is hands crossed, starring off into the balcony and read his lines with a tone that seemed like he didn’t care that he was hosting the Academy Awards. Weird. At one point, I even felt like the producers sent Anne out there solo and kept James backstage where he was tweeting live pictures and videos throughout the night. If you’re interested in seeing them, go towww.twitter.com/jamesfranco

Additionally, many of the jokes/skits seemed ‘inside’. By that I mean, if you aren’t a big movie buff or in the industry, you may not have understood some of the produced humor.

Now, the most important part is the actual winners/losers/surprises and acceptance speeches. Lackluster is an appropriate word to sum all of that up. There were no real surprises, which means everyone that was supposed to win, did and everyone that lost was expected to lose. There were, however, a few moments that stood out to me. Melissa Leo’s (Best supporting Actress-The Fighter) acceptance speech was insane. She gave a shout out to the upper deck audience, almost hyperventilated, dropped and F-bomb and even got a little political. She did later apologize for cussing to the press. No big deal, but if James Franco wasn’t as awful it would have been the most talked about moment. She owes him a drink for taking the heat off of her. I think Kirk Douglas’ introduction was tough to watch, but he pulled it off and got one of the very few laughs out of me. He clearly struggled, but hung in there. Kudos.
When it came to the biggest award of the night (Best Picture), I was shocked to notice that while they were showing all of the 10 nominees, they were playing a monologue from ‘The King’s Speech’ while they showed clips from all of the other 9 movies up for the award. Weird. It didn’t seem fair, especially since ‘The Kings Speech’ did in fact win the award. It seemed like there was some foreshadowing going on and I’m sure it didn’t go unnoticed.

Overall I give the show a C- and hope they bring back a veteran host for next year. However, if they are interested in having me do it, I am available.

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