COUNTRY BEAT: Tim McGraw, Charley Pride, Kasey Chambers …

McGraw judge suffers heart attack; Pride at Opry tribute; Chambers, Robert Earl Keen tour dates.

Tim McGraw's assault trail in Orchard Park, New York, was adjourned until Monday morning (May 21) because the case's judge, Edmund S. Brown Jr., was hospitalized Thursday after suffering a heart attack. "We wanted to extend our deepest sympathies to the judge and his family, and hope he has a thorough and complete recovery," McGraw and his wife, Faith Hill, said in a statement. "Our prayers are with him and his family, and we're going home to be with our family this weekend." Brown's illness threw the trial into limbo. According to attorneys at the trial, if Brown is unable to return soon, the case could be declared a mistrial. It would then be up to the Erie County district attorney's office to decide whether or not to retry the misdemeanor assault case. McGraw is scheduled to perform Saturday at the Grand Casino in Gulfport, Mississippi. His summer tour is set to begin June 20 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. …

Country Music Hall of Fame member Charley Pride will help celebrate the opening of the new Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. The Grand Ole Opry has scheduled Saturday (May 19) tributes to Hall of Famers, with performances by Pride, Jimmy Dickens and Kitty Wells, as well as tributes to other Hall of Fame members including Patsy Cline, Marty Robbins, Tammy Wynette, Roger Miller and others. ... Kasey Chambers, already scheduled to open shows for Lucinda Williams in May and June, has added concert dates with Robert Earl Keen. Her Keen tour dates are June 2 at the Variety Playhouse in Atlanta, June 3 at Ziggy's in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and June 5 at Cat's Cradle in Carrboro, North Carolina. Chambers has also added Williams shows on May 29 at the Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville, Tennessee, and on June 12 at Le Spectrum in Montreal, Quebec.. …

Apparently confident that neither he nor Kenny Chesney will be serving time in jail anytime soon, Tim McGraw on Wednesday (May 16) announced dates for his 2001 tour, to be called simply Tim McGraw on Tour. On June 20, just days after Country Music Fan Fair in Nashville and only 10 days after he wraps up the George Strait Country Music Festival, McGraw will kick off his summer trek with a concert at Journal Pavilion in Albuquerque, New Mexico. ...

Faith Hill's "Breathe" was named BMI Pop Song of the Year on Tuesday (May 15) at the performance rights organization's 49th BMI Pop Awards, held at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills. The award went to songwriter Stephanie Bentley, who co-wrote "Breathe" with Holly Lamar (who is not a BMI-affiliated writer). ... Willie Nelson's annual 4th of July Picnic in Luckenbach, Texas, has been canceled this year. The promoter said Wednesday (May 16) that Nelson was taking a break, but did not elaborate. Nelson's Farm Aid benefit concert, set for September 29 in Noblesville, Indiana, outside Indianapolis, is still on. ...

Lorrie Morgan, Sammy Kershaw, Chad Brock, Leslie Satcher, Exile, Cledus T. Judd, Tyler England, Blake Shelton and Carolyn Dawn Johnson have been added to the lineup for Fan Fair, which takes place June 14-17 in Nashville. They join a long list of confirmed acts including Alan Jackson, Vince Gill, Kenny Chesney, Jessica Andrews, Lonestar, Jo Dee Messina, Trisha Yearwood and Lee Ann Womack. This year's event will also include late-night "Fan Fair After Hours" performances at such Nashville nightclubs as Tootsie's Orchid Lounge and the Wildhorse Saloon. … The double-platinum sales of Lee Ann Womack's I Hope You Dance will be celebrated at a party following the May 17 opening of the new Country Music Hall of Fame. ...

The seventh annual Sizzlin' Country Concert held May 8 in Los Angeles raised more than $500,000 for Cystic Fibrosis research and care programs. The event was hosted by Jessica Andrews and Billy Gilman and featured performances by Keith Urban, Tracy Byrd, Tammy Cochran, Mark Chesnutt, Andy Griggs, Carolyn Dawn Johnson, Lila McCann, Tim Rushlow, Trick Pony and Richard Marx. …

Martie Seidel of the Dixie Chicks says she and bandmates Emily Robison and Natalie Maines have been taking in a lot of live music in Texas during their work hiatus. "We've been listening to a lot of bluegrass and people like Joe Ely and Willie [Nelson]," Seidel said backstage Wednesday (May 9) at the ACM Awards in Los Angeles. Seidel said the downtime has been beneficial for new mom Maines, who delivered her first son in March. Although they're officially off duty, the Chicks will regroup in September to play a benefit for children with AIDS. Seidel said fans probably won't see a new Dixie Chicks album for at least a year. …

Loretta Lynn will open a Coal Miner's Daughter Museum at her ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on May 26. The 18,000-square-foot structure will house a theater, rooms depicting her childhood home and school, her tour bus and other vehicles, and personal memorabilia. ...

One of the world's great scuba diving locales will host a country festival this summer. Travis Tritt, the Wilkinsons, the Kinleys, Chris Cagle, Jamie O'Neal, SheDaisy and others will perform at Cayman Country from August 1-12 on Grand Cayman in the Caribbean Cayman Islands. ...

The Veterans of Foreign Wars will present Travis Tritt with this year's VFW Hall of Fame Award, which recognizes entertainers (and sports figures) who have served veterans through their work, at the group's August convention in Milwaukee. Tritt portrayed a disabled vet in his videos for "Anymore," "Tell Me I Was Dreaming" and "If I Lost You." His long-form video, "Travis Tritt — a Celebration," was filmed during a performance benefiting disabled vets. And in 1994-96 he served as spokesperson for Disabled American Veterans. …

Lee Roy Parnell's first new studio album in four years is due on June 12 from Vanguard Records. Tell the Truth was recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound Studios and features guest appearances by Keb' Mo,' Bonnie Bramlett, Delbert McClinton and the Mississippi Mass Choir. ...

Jeannie C. Riley, best known for her 1968 #1 hit "Harper Valley PTA," has filed suit in Williamson Country Circuit Court, Tennessee, contending she suffered injuries in a store fall. Riley seeks $250,000 from the Big Lots parent company, Consolidated Stores Corp., charging that injuries from a May 2000 fall in a Big Lots store have kept her from performing as a singer and resulted in a lasting disability. …

Bluegrass legend Earl Scruggs will release his Earl Scruggs and Friends duets album on August 1. He's joined on it by Elton John Melissa Etheridge, Sting, Dwight Yoakam, Billy Bob Thornton, John Fogerty, Don Henley, Johnny Cash, Rosanne Cash, comedian Steve Martin, Marty Stuart, Paul Shaffer, Leon Russell and Travis Tritt. ...

Ray Benson of Asleep at the Wheel will perform with Paul Shaffer and the World's Most Dangerous Band on "The Late Show With David Letterman" on May 23. ...

Fan Fair's Superstar Spectacular will feature new Grand Ole Opry member Brad Paisley and other Opry regulars and guests in two shows at Nashville's Grand Ole Opry House. Tickets are $26 and $36, and funds benefit the Grand Ole Opry Trust Fund. Performing on June 14 will be Bill Anderson, Joe Diffie, Tracy Lawrence, Collin Raye, Johnny Rodriguez, Chalee Tennison, Trick Pony and Keith Urban. Appearing on June 15 are T. Bubba Bechtol, Chris Cagle, Bill Carlisle, Jimmy Dickens, Jack Greene, James House and Paisley. ...

Lee Ann Womack and football great Terry Bradshaw will host the June 13 TNN & CMT Country Weekly Music Awards. CMT and TNN will simulcast the former TNN Country Weekly Music Awards. The three-hour program will be telecast live from Nashville's Gaylord Entertainment Center. Alan Jackson, Brad Paisley, Jo Dee Messina, Jessica Andrews, Toby Keith, John Michael Montgomery, Montgomery Gentry, Lonestar and Phil Vassar will perform on the fan-voted awards show. (CMT and TNN are owned by Sonicnet.com's parent company, Viacom). ...

Alan Jackson's house on Center Hill Lake in Middle Tennessee is up for grabs. The asking price is $3.9 million. He will continue to live at his main residence in Franklin, Tennessee. … Canadian singer-songwriter Ron Sexsmith's fourth album, Blue Boy, will be released June 5. Steve Earle and producer Ray Kennedy, collectively known as "Twangtrust," produced the project. ...

Mavericks lead singer Raul Malo is recording his first solo album in Los Angeles this month. Steve Berlin of Los Lobos is producing. ... Kyle Lehning (Waylon Jennings, Randy Travis) is producing a new Derailers album, due for summer release. ...

Sam Phillips, who founded Sun Records and signed Elvis Presley, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash and many others to their early recording contracts, will speak at a celebrity luncheon on June 30 at Rockabilly Fest 2001 in Jackson, Tennessee. This rare public appearance by Phillips will begin at noon. ...

Evening talent lineups for the major Fan Fair shows at Nashville's Adelphia Coliseum have been released by the Country Music Association. Scheduled for June 14 (all starting times are 7 p.m.) are, Billy Ray Cyrus, Joe Diffie, Billy Gilman, the Kinleys, Patty Loveless, Montgomery Gentry, Collin Raye, and Travis Tritt. Performing on June 15 are Trace Adkins, Tracy Lawrence, Jo Dee Messina, John Michael Montgomery, Sawyer Brown and Trick Pony. Appearing June 16 are Gary Allan, Jessica Andrews, Terri Clark, Vince Gill, Jamie O'Neal, Rascal Flatts, SheDaisy and Trisha Yearwood. Performing June 17 (starting at 5 p.m.) are Tracy Byrd, Kenny Chesney, Bill Engvall, Sara Evans, Andy Griggs, Alan Jackson, Carolyn Dawn Johnson, Lonestar, Martina McBride, Lorrie Morgan & Sammy Kershaw, Brad Paisley and Phil Vassar. ...

The Oak Ridge Boys will receive the Boy Scouts of America's highest honor in a ceremony on June 1 in Boston where they'll be given the Silver Buffalo Award for distinguished service to youth. Members of the group serve on the Boy Scouts board and are active in the National Committee for the Prevention of Child Abuse, Feed the Children and other programs. ...

Singer/songwriter Deana Carter is working on a new album, but it won't be released on her longtime label, Capitol Records. Carter said she has been "writing her butt off" for the self-produced new project, but declined to say which label it will be on. "I can't say just yet," Carter said. She will debut some of her new material during a 20-city acoustic tour that kicks off May 6 in Chicago. In addition to writing new music, Carter has been splitting her time between homes in Nashville and Los Angeles, where she has written and pitched treatments for a TV game show and a food show. Carter also has landed the small role of a "bimbette Wal-Mart wife" in an upcoming independent film starring Billy Bob Thornton. ...

"Mulholland Drive," a television project Billy Ray Cyrus filmed more than two years ago, will be shown at this year's Cannes Film Festival. The show, which features Cyrus as a hunky pool man, was directed by David Lynch ("Twin Peaks") as a pilot episode for an ABC TV series, but the network passed on the project. Cyrus is now starring in the series "Doc" on PAX. ...

Buck Owens will be honored with the Country Radio Broadcasters Career Achievement Award on June 28. Brad Paisley will present the award during CRB's annual Country Music DJ Hall of Fame Banquet at the Renaissance Hotel in Nashville. Loretta Lynn, Chet Atkins and Eddy Arnold have previously been recognized with the honor. ...

Some of the artists who created the "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" soundtrack will reconvene June 13 for a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York. Alison Krauss & Union Station, John Hartford, Gillian Welch, Ralph Stanley, the Whites and the Cox Family are among the artists who will participate. ...

Vince Gill and Nickel Creek will kick off this summer's Bluegrass Night at the Ryman series in Nashville with a June 21 concert at the Ryman Auditorium. An Evening With Ricky Skaggs will be presented June 28, Sam Bush and Friends will perform July 5, Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys and the Del McCoury Band play on July 12, and Rowan, Rice and Clements perform on July 19. The July 26 lineup has not yet been announced. ...

Patty Loveless and husband/producer Emory Gordy Jr. are putting finishing touches on Loveless' return-to-roots album, Mountain Soul, due June 26. Ricky Skaggs, Travis Tritt and Jon Randall guest on the album, which mixes traditional and contemporary songs. Kentucky-bred Loveless re-recorded "The Sounds of Loneliness," which she wrote at 15 for her debut album. Mountain Soul features covers of Reno & Smiley's "I Know You're Married," Dolly Parton and Porter Wagoner's "Someone That I Used to Know," Melba Montgomery's "Raging Fire," and Darrell Scott's "You'll Never Leave Harlan Alive." "I've been wanting to do this record since 1992, when Emory and I put a little group together to go play the Carter Stanley Memorial Festival," Loveless said in a statement. Loveless will tour this summer to support Mountain Soul and Strong Heart, her current mainstream country album. ...

Trace Adkins will host the BellSouth Senior Classic golf tournament at Opryland's annual Celebrity Kids Classic event at Nashville's Springhouse Golf Club on May 27. The event raises money for charities including Vanderbilt Children's Hospital, Tennessee Lions Charities, Middle Tennessee Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scout Council of Cumberland Valley and Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee. Artists taking part include Chris Cagle, Mark Collie, Clay Davidson, Vince Gill, Rebecca Lynn Howard, Sonya Isaacs and the Wilkinsons.