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Rascal Flatts Perform LIVE from Nashville!

Recap By Mamie Shepherd
Video Recap by Katie Klochany, Elon University
Pictures by John Russell/Vanderbilt University Medical Center
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Friends to Seacrest Studios, and award-winning country music trio, Rascal Flatts, gave a groundbreaking, first-of-its-kind, multi-studio concert from Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt in Nashville.  It was groundbreaking because this appearance allowed patients from Washington, D.C.; Cincinnati, Ohio; Atlanta, GA; Boston, MA; and Nashville, TN to come together by live stream to see and talk to “the most awarded country group of the past decade.” It was important to Rascal Flatts to reach as many sick and injured children as possible with their music.  The Flatts answered questions, signed autographs, and put on a concert that thrilled patients and families.

Rascal Flatts has sold over 22.5 million albums and has had 16 #1 single hits. The crowd that gathered in Nashville, and the fans watching from across the country, were delighted to have access to this incredibly talented group.

While on-air, the legendary Grand Ole Opry members performed some of their greatest hits including Bless the Broken RoadFast Cars and Freedom, and I Like the Sound of That!  Some very young fans of the movie, CARS, even brought their toy cars to be autographed recognizing Rascal Flatts as the performers who sang Life Is A Highway from the hit movie!

Seacrest Studios had started the season off early by playing songs from Rascal Flatts’ latest Christmas CD, The Greatest Gift of All.

It was fun to see The Flatts in person right after they were seen on the CMA Awards, and after their featured appearance on the hit country music video, Forever Country, where a long list of legends and newcomers joined together for one of the most incredible musical collaborations in country music history.

These generous singers acknowledged all that they have accomplished and all that they hope to do to help others.

Our holidays got a jump-start with Rascal Flatts and, because of their music and kindness, we will never be the same!

Seacrest Studios Goes Country With Kellie Pickler!

 

Recap by Mamie Shepherd

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Seacrest Studios at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital in Nashville, TN was featured on an episode of Kellie Pickler’s CMT reality show, “I Love Kellie Pickler.”  What an amazing experience this was for patients and families to not only get to meet country music’s sweetheart, but also participate in a real television show!

The episode brought Kellie and her singer/songwriter husband, Kyle Jacobs, to the studio and the laughs they generate cannot be contained!  Kellie charmed her way into the hearts of everyone at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital!  During her visit, she brought friends Ken Johnson, and Andi Zack-Johnson, along with her. This husband-wife duo, also known as Huck & Lilly, may be recognized by children for their work on the album, There’s A Tree Growing in my Room!  Ken and Andi brought contagious joy, wonderful music, and a fun sense of humor to the happy experience we all had at Seacrest Studios.

Patients and families were entertained by all of the fun during a Q&A session with Kellie.  Her answers were hilarious, and the giggles were non-stop!  We also learned how to Whip/Nae Nae and we enjoyed a funny version of Hospital Relay Challenge played by Kellie and her friends!

Kellie did pause from the laughs long enough to speak with patients about the importance of keeping good company – something we most certainly did when she came to the studio!

Our thanks to Kellie, Kyle, Andi, and Ken for a fun afternoon – one we will re-live this season on “I Love Kellie Pickler“!

The Band Perry Celebrates Release of ‘Comeback Kid’ at Seacrest Studios Nashville

Video and blog by Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany

Country music fans flocked to Seacrest Studios at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt to meet Kimberly, Reid, and Neil from The Band Perry.

The Band Perry’s visit was filled with excitement as they celebrated the release of their first new song in a year, “Comeback Kid.” Written to inspire friends and fans walking through a challenging time, the musicians hope to encourage those who come out on the other side landing on their feet. The band revealed the immense difficulty in keeping the release of the song a secret, and Kimberly confessed in most situations, she would be the first one to spill a secret.

With questions in hand, curious patients asked about the early stages of the family band, discovering that youngest brother, Neil, was well liked by older sister, Kimberly, because he smelled like pizza when he was born.. After an exciting game of “Song-Moji”, Kimberly shared she has a “No No” list of words she will never put in songs, including any word related to the weather. However, we were happy to hear “Seacrest” is not on this list, and may appear in their next single. We will have to stay tuned.

Thanks so much for an incredible visit, we cannot wait to have you back in Seacrest Studios!

Jordan Fisher Answers Patient Questions In Seacrest Studios Nashville

Video and blog by Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany

It was an exciting Friday night when patients welcomed “Teen Beach Movie” and “Grease Live” star, Jordan Fisher, to Seacrest Studios at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Cheers and applause erupted as the actor/singer appeared through the glass doors of Seacrest Studios as patients exclaimed, “Teen Beach Movie is my favorite!” Immediately, patients started interviewing the star asking questions like “What is your favorite movie?” which Fisher embarrassingly answered From Justin to Kelly and “What will you name your future pet?” a question Fisher pondered before replying “Carly,” after one of the patients in the room. Fisher also revealed his start in the acting industry began in 5th grade, all because of a girl! When she asked if he was going to the Drama Club meeting he quickly responded yes, and has been an actor and singer ever since.

Fisher also revealed to patients that he procrastinates getting out of bed in the morning, even though he feels the most productive when starting the day early. We learned that with a busy day on set or a long day in a hospital, Fisher recommends always finding things that bring you joy. Hang out with family, find a hobby, watch shows or movies, read books, or listen to music to distract you from all the waiting.

Finally, after a fast paced round of the “Hum Along Game” Fisher ended his visit with a skeptical patient asking if he really starred in Teen Beach Movie. To prove himself Fisher was able to remember and perform part of the “Surf’s Up” dance from the finale of the film.

Thank you so much for all the smiles, laughs, and dance moves you brought to the studio Jordan! Come back to visit us anytime!

Frankie Ballard Sings ‘Young and Crazy’ With A Patient In Seacrest Studios

Video by Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany.
Blog by: Mamie Shepherd
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We always love when Frankie Ballard stops by Seacrest Studios…and patients were very excited to welcome him for the first time to our Seacrest Studios at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt!

Frankie’s last visit was filled with fun questions from patients like, “How old were you when you sang your first song?”  He told us about being on the road and even took a poll of the audience in Seacrest Studios to find out what might make the best “bus pet”. We wanted to know all about his hit song, Young and Crazy, and how Frankie would make a hospital gown cool.  His advice was to “be creative, be confident, be comfortable.” There were so many little fans in the studio hanging on his every word! We even had one patient who knew the songs he performed by heart!

It was fun to find out that, after a big break winning Kenny Chesney’s Next Big Star competition, Ballard went on to open for Chesney, Lady Antebellum, and Florida Georgia Line!

Ballard’s new album, El Rio, was recently recognized by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the Top 25 “Best Country and Americana Albums of 2016″ so far. We were lucky enough to catch this generous, talented artist while he was home in Nashville.

Come back anytime, Frankie! You’re as “Good As Gold” to us!

 

American Authors Play ‘Hum Along’ in Seacrest Studios Nashville

Recap By Seacrest Studios Intern, Lexi Miller
Videos By Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany.

American Authors visited Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt and discussed their upcoming album, “What We Live For.” The band agreed that their first album “Oh, What a Life” was written about previous life experiences whereas this next album is focused more about their goals and dreams for the future. The band is open about their very intimate songwriting approach stating, “music is a bit of a diary because those are your experiences.”

The band seems to have many hidden talents along with their obvious musical gift. Bandmate Matt Sanchez has been working on a novel which includes a loose history of what the band has been through thus far. The book allegedly contains characters based on each of the other band members. In their free time, the band enjoys outdoor activities like snowboarding, rock climbing, and hiking. They try to stay active on their days off!

We learned where the band came up with the name “American Authors” originally. The bandmates are from all across the United States and each have unalike backgrounds and upbringings. As for the second part of the name they said, “we feel like we are authors because we have stories to tell.”

After the interview, the band played a game of “Hum Along” where one person hums a song and the other guesses. Their humming skills were very impressive!

We loved having American Authors in the studio and we can’t wait to see them again!

ACM® Lifting Lives® Music Camp Visits Seacrest Studios Nashville With RaeLynn

For the seventh year, ACM® Lifting Lives® hosted their Music Camp, a week-long residential program open to campers (talented in music) with Williams Syndrome. The Camp has a dual purpose of studying Williams syndrome while providing music enrichment through performance and education.

This year, the camp made a special stop in our brand new studio at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital where campers learned how to be radio DJs by interviewing singer-songwriter RaeLynn.

A big thanks to ACM® Lifting Lives® for inviting the campers and RaeLynn to our studio for this great visit. We loved meeting everyone!

AJ Lehrman Gives Patients Advice About Following Their Dreams

By: Seacrest Studios Intern, Lexi Miller
Video by: Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany

Patients at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt had a special treat recently when they got to meet singer-songwriter, AJ Lehrman. AJ is currently on tour with two-time Grammy winning group, Pentatonix, as their opening act. During his interview AJ shared some of his songwriting secrets with us, revealing that visualization is a huge part of his process. He has been writing music for four years and gave friends in the studio some advice about following their dreams. “Whatever you do to set yourself apart from others will be appreciated,” he said.

Although AJ is on a big tour right now, we learned he still has some of the same responsibilities most other 17 year olds have. AJ does schoolwork every day while he’s on tour and is currently applying to colleges! Things got exciting when AJ entertained patients by teaching them some of his favorite dance moves, including the “dab.” He told friends in the studio he likes to do the dab when he feels really accomplished. Although we wouldn’t know it now, AJ disclosed that being a musician wasn’t always his dream when growing up. He used to want to be a professional tennis player!

Following the interview, AJ gave an incredible performance of a mash-up incorporating other artists like Michael Jackson, Sam Hunt, Journey, Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift. We had so much fun with AJ in the studio and we can’t wait for his next visit!

 

TRYON Visits Seacrest Studios Nashville & Sings For Patients

Recap By Seacrest Studios Intern, Lexi Miller
Video By Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochan

Brothers Stephen and Justin Kirk of TRYON made a visit to Seacrest Studios at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

During their interview in studio we learned that the brothers grew up with an entire family of singers, so it was no surprise when the duet TRYON was born. Stephen and Justin have two other siblings and the entire family made the move from Charlotte to Nashville in support of the brothers’ potential music careers.

Today, TRYON is touring with Carrie Underwood as her opening act but have previously opened for Safety Suit and two-time Juno nominee, Kira Isabella. They mentioned many artists who have influenced their music, naming Rascal Flatts, Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder. Stephen and Justin both play numerous instruments including drums, guitar, trumpet, and ukulele.

We played a game with TRYON testing their Tennessee and North Carolina knowledge. The brothers did really well but also learned some new facts along the way! Following the game, TRYON performed their newest single “Somebody To Love Me” and did a meet and greet with our friends in the studio. Good luck on tour, TRYON, we hope to see you soon!

David Cook Plays Games With Patients In Seacrest Studios Nashville

Recap by Seacrest Studios Intern, Lexi Miller, Clemson University
Videos by Seacrest Studios Intern, Katie Klochany

American Idol’s Season 7 winner, David Cook, made a memorable visit to Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. David told friends in the studio about growing up in a musical household, his unconventional audition for American Idol, and details about his newest album, Digital Vein. Typically, David likes to name his records first, then form the songs based on that name. We learned that Digital Vein was originally going to be named Mirror, Mirror but was changed at the very last minute.

During the interview, David shared some details about growing up in a family that loved music. The first instrument he ever played was a violin, then three years later he learned to play guitar. Today, David owns 30 guitars! He told us the white guitar he played during his time on American Idol has now been retired to a special place on the wall in his home. Although David’s first musical breakthrough was in a school Christmas pageant as a child, the rest of his childhood he spent more focused on sports. It wasn’t until college that David started concentrating on his band and music career.

After the interview, David finished up the visit with a meet and greet with new friends in the studio. Thank you so much for making our day here at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, David!