Country Beat: Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Marshall Dyllon, Willie Nelson …

Gilmore cancels dates; Dreamcatcher signs boy band Marshall Dyllon; Nelson goes Potter-y.

Singer/songwriter Jimmie Dale Gilmore, whose current Rounder album, One Endless Night (RealAudio excerpt of title track), reached #1 on Gavin‘s Americana chart, has canceled a handful of dates because of his father’s illness, including Wednesday (Aug. 30) and Thursday (Aug. 31) in San Francisco; Friday (Sept. 1) in Petaluma, Calif.; Saturday (Sept. 2) in Santa Monica, Calif.; and Monday (Sept. 4) at the Bumbershoot Festival in Seattle. …

Kenny Rogers‘ Dreamcatcher Records has signed a new country boy band, Marshall Dyllon. Singer/songwriter Phil Vassar is co-producing the harmonizing quintet’s debut, scheduled for release in late October. The group is represented by TCDC Entertainment, a joint venture between Dreamcatcher and Lou Pearlman’s Trans Continental Records, which launched the careers of *NSync and the Backstreet Boys

Willie Nelson has created his own spoof on the “Harry Potter” book series craze. A photo of Nelson on his Web site shows the singer, bug-eyed and leaning on a Farm Aid cane, with the caption “Harry Bugger in ‘The Stoned Scorcerer’ by I.P. Freely.” …

Faith Hill and husband Tim McGraw‘s Soul 2 Soul 2000 tour already has grossed more than $18 million on its first 25-date leg, reports a spokesperson for Hill. More than 400,000 fans packed in to see the couple across the Southeast and West Coast — with more than 11 sold-out arenas. The second leg kicks off Friday (Sept. 1) in Cleveland. Additional tour dates may be added in October. …

A new live set featuring Texas singer/songwriters Charlie Robison, Bruce Robison and Jack Ingram is tentatively scheduled to bow Sept. 26 on Lucky Dog, according to a label representative. Track listing for Unleashed Live: “The Good Life” (Bruce Robison), “Rayne, Louisiana” (Bruce Robison), “Angry All the Time” (Bruce Robison), “Red Letter Day” (Bruce Robison), “My Hometown” (Charlie Robison), “Sunset Boulevard” (Charlie Robison), “Loving County” (Charlie Robison), “Barlight” (Charlie Robison), “Mustang Burn” (Ingram), “Work This Out” (Ingram), “Travis County” (Ingram), and “Barbie Doll” (Ingram). …

Pioneering western swing fiddler Cliff Bruner died Aug. 25 in Houston due to complications from cancer and heart problems. After recording several songs with Milton Brown and His Music Brownies, Bruner formed the Texas Wanderers and went on to record “Truck Driver’s Blues,” “Jessie,” “Milk Cow Blues” and Floyd Tillman‘s “It Makes No Difference.” …

The Americana Music Association will hold its inaugural meeting Nov. 10–11 in Nashville. The event will include workshops and music performances. …

Kenny Rogers is collaborating with several artists on his upcoming album, There You Go Again (Dreamcatcher), due Oct. 3, reports Billboard. Suzy Bogguss, Billy Dean, Alison Krauss, Steve Wariner, Linda Davis, Brad Paisley, Diamond Rio and Collin Raye are among those helping out in the studio. Rogers’ current album, She Rides Wild Horses, spawned such #1 hits as “Buy Me a Rose”(RealAudio excerpt). …

Brad Paisley is scheduled to perform at the 12th annual Country Gold Festival in Kumamoto, Japan. The Wilkinsons, the Derailers, Chalee Tennison and Claire Lynch also are slated for the Oct. 15 event, according to a refugee management spokesperson. …

Jo Dee Messina‘s Burn has been certified gold, the RIAA reports. Messina leaves for Switzerland to perform Sept. 8–9 at the Gstaad Festival, along with Chad Brock, Asleep at the Wheel and Wynonna Judd. …

A new recording deal for Lee Roy Parnell, who was among those artists dropped when Arista Nashville folded into RCA this summer, is pending, according to a spokesperson for the singer/slide guitarist. Additionally Parnell, whose hits include “Heart’s Desire,” has been logging studio time. He was asked to play on the debut project for Meredith Edwards, the first artist in *NSync member Lance Bass‘ joint venture with Mercury Nashville. Parnell also has collaborated with Big House on a cover of a Grateful Dead song that will appear on the group’s next album. …

Jerry Lee Lewis‘ youngest sister, rockabilly artist Linda Gail Lewis, has teamed with Van Morrison for a duets album, You Win Again (Pointblank/Virgin), according to label sources. Due for release Oct. 3, the project includes versions of Hank Williams‘ “Why Don’t You Love Me,” Jerry Lee Lewis’ “Let’s Talk About Us,” John Lee Hooker‘s “Boogie Chillin’ ” and Bo Diddley‘s “Cadillac,” plus Morrison’s own “No Way Pedro.” The two singers are touring in Europe through Oct. 7. …

Sept. 8 will be Kinky Friedman Day in Austin, Texas, according to a spokesperson for the singer. The city’s mayor is honoring Kinky Friedman for community efforts, including his Utopia Animal Rescue Ranch and the Adopt-a-Dog-athon. … Gaylord Entertainment has signed former Decca artist Chris Knight for an untitled country label, according to a source for the company. Gaylord has plans to launch three record labels. …

In addition to RCA’s reissue of Backstage at the Grand Ole Opry, MCA is due to release a special collection this fall to commemorate the Opry’s 75th birthday. Both releases will include the new Brad Paisley/Chely Wright duet “Hard To Be a Husband, Hard To Be a Wife,” according to a label spokesperson. …

The Tractors are scheduled to release an album on Audium Entertainment in early 2001 with a tour to follow, according to a label representative. … “Workin’ Man Blues: Country Music in California” by Gerald W. Haslam nabbed first place this week at the 11th annual Ralph J. Gleason Music Book Awards, sponsored by BMI, Rolling Stone, and New York University. (Sonicnet.com Country Editor Chet Flippo is one of the judges for this award.) …

— sonicnet.com staff report