Dolly Parton believes the coronavirus is a lesson from God. The country legend began a video at the bottom of her stairs, singing, "Climbing the stairway to heaven, because this virus has scared the H-E-L-L out of out us."

Switching to speaking, Parton continued, "I'm not making light of the situation. Well, maybe I am, because it's the light, I believe, that’s gonna dissolve the situation. I think God is in this, I really do. I think he's trying to hold us up to the light so we can see ourselves and see each other through the eyes of love. And I hope we learn that lesson."

"I think that when this passes, we're gonna all be better people," she said. "I know that I have a positive attitude about it, as negative as it seems to be right now. So just keep the faith, don't be too scared, it's gonna be alright, God loves us."

Dolly Parton sent fans a positive message of faith and reassurance while at home during the coronavirus pandemic. Parton says she believes this moment is a test from God.

Artists including Brad Paisley, Dustin Lynch, Lauren Alaina, Lindsay Ell, Sara Evans and Walker Hayes are participating in "Gratitunes" to celebrate and thank Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) staff.

Each day, artists will send a Gratitune on their personal Instagram page to VUMC medical staff at hospital and assessment sites amid COVID-19. Paisley kicked the program off saying, "Let’s use the power of music to spread joy and send thanks to these incredible men and women." 

https://www.gratitunes.org/

Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood are donating $1 million to coronavirus-related charities and relief efforts, and will perform live from their home recording studio on CBS on tomorrow (Wednesday) night.

"Garth & Trisha Live!" will be a one-hour event, beginning at 9PM ET, from Studio G. Brooks and Yearwood's home studio is the setting for Brooks' weekly Monday night Facebook Live series, Inside Studio G. The couple performed together during Brooks' March 23 broadcast, to rave reviews, which spawned the idea for the TV special.
 
A press release notes that Brooks and Yearwood's performance will, of course, be filmed without a live audience and with a minimal crew. All of those on set will be practicing social distancing, and "extensive" safety measures will be taken to keep everyone healthy.

Jan Howard, country singer and songwriter and longtime member of the Grand Ole Opry, died on Saturday in Gallatin, Tenn., at the age of 91.

Howard, born Lula Grace Johnson, began her career in music by singing on demos written by then-husband Harlan Howard that were recorded by Nashville acts like Kitty Wells and Charlie Walker, and had her first own country hit with "The One You Slip Around With" in 1960.

Other notable singles she released as a solo artist -- which made Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart -- included "Evil on Your Mind" (1966), "Bad Seed" (1966) and "My Son" (1968), an emotional track written for one of her sons, Jimmy, who was soon after killed in action in Vietnam. She received Grammy nominations for both "Evil on Your Mind" and"My Son."

Howard also recorded several songs as Bill Anderson's duet partner, such as their 1967 hit "For Loving You," and joined him on tour and on his syndicated television show.

As a songwriter, she penned songs for her own albums and worked on tracks for other artists, including Kitty Wells (1966's "It's All Over But the Crying"), Bill Anderson (1970's "Love Is a Sometimes Thing") and Connie Smith (1970's "I Never Once Stopped Loving You," which she co-wrote with Anderson).

Howard was inducted into the Opry in March of 1971, making her a member for 49 years before her death.

Americana legend John Prine has been hospitalized since Thursday (March 26) after experiencing a sudden onset of COVID-19 symptoms.

A cancer survivor himself, the singer’s family revealed the news Sunday afternoon (March 29) with a post on social media, explaining that his “situation is critical.”

The post says, “After a sudden onset of COVID-19 symptons, John was hospitalized on Thursday (3/26). He was intubated Saturday evening, and continues to receive care, but his situation is critical.

“This is hard news for us to share,” the message continues. “But so many of you have loved and supported John over the years, we wanted to let you know and give you the chance to send on more of that love and support now. And know that we love you, and John loves you.”
 
The news comes hours after country star Joe Diffie died from coronavirus-related complications and a week after Prine’s wife and manager, Fiona Whelan Prine, was diagnosed with the coronavirus.  The couple had been self-quarantined and isolated from each other.

Country singer Joe Diffie, who had a string of hits in the 1990s with chart-topping ballads and honky-tonk singles like "Home" and "Pickup Man," has died after testing positive for COVID-19. He was 61.

Diffie on Friday announced he had contracted the coronavirus, becoming the first country star to go public with such a diagnosis.  Two days later, Diffie's publicist said the singer died due to complications from the virus.
 
Diffie, a native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, was a member of the Grand Ole Opry for more than 25 years. His hits included "Honky Tonk Attitude," "Prop Me Up Beside the Jukebox (If I Die)," "Bigger Than the Beatles" and "If the Devil Danced (In Empty Pockets)."

His mid-90s albums "Honkey Tonk Attitude" and "Third Rock From the Sun" went platinum. Eighteen of Diffie's singles landed in the top 10, with five going No. 1. In his 2013 single "1994," Jason Aldean name-checked the '90s country mainstay.

Diffie is survived by his wife, Theresa Crump, and five children from his four marriages.

Zac Brown Band musician Coy Bowles has decided to release his first children’s album, "Music for Tiny Humans", more than a month early “to get the music out to the people when they need it most."

The project, which includes uplifting tracks like “All in This Together,” “The Sun Shines Everyday” and “Brand New Day,” plus imagination-stoking anthems like “The Dinosaur Dance.”

Aside from the early release of his album (for which part of the proceeds “will go to @savethechildren and @musicares to help out kids and musicians in need"), the guitarist has been performing in live shows on Facebook and Instagram at 4 p.m. daily.

The musical, educational episodes are inspired by Bowles’ desire to “immediately jump in and help” parents who are now in an unplanned situation of having to homeschool their children amid shutdowns of educational centers due to the spread of COVID-19.

"Music for Tiny Humans" is available to stream today.

Thomas Rhett, Keith Urban, and Carrie Underwood are among the artists confirmed for "ACM Presents: Our Country", a two-hour special will be broadcast Sunday, April 5th (8:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT and 7:00 PM CT) on the CBS Television Network and on CBS All Access.

Confirmed performers include Kelsea Ballerini, Dierks Bentley, Kane Brown & John Legend, Luke Bryan, Brandi Carlile, Eric Church, Luke Combs, Sheryl Crow, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert, Little Big Town, Tim McGraw, Old Dominion, Brad Paisley & Darius Rucker, Thomas Rhett, Blake Shelton & Gwen Stefani, Shania Twain, Carrie Underwood, and Keith Urban.

"ACM Presents: Our Country" will also honor 10-time ACM Award winner Kenny Rogers with performances by Luke Bryan, Brad Paisley and Darius Rucker.

Artists will appear from their homes to share heartfelt thoughts and perform acoustic versions of country hits. Additionally, video clips from previous ACM Award broadcasts will highlight favorite ACM moments from the past.

The special will broadcast during the time slot previously scheduled for the 55th Academy of Country Music Awards, which will now be broadcast Wednesday, September 16th.

A group of Nashville studio singers on coronavirus lockdown performed as an epic cell phone choir, singing “it is well with my soul”....while on their phones.

They emailed it to a producer and "he put it all together to come up with this absolutely AMAZING video/recording.”

 

https://youtu.be/GHU-fFrxIQg

Lee Brice is forming a record label, Pump House Records with longtime co-writer Rob Hatch, producer/engineer/songwriter Elisha Hoffman and industry executives Derek and Kristi Hutchins. Their first signed artist is singer-songwriter Nick Norman. His debut album is expected later this year.