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Hear more from Country Countdown USA Saturday morning at 9!

This week’s co-host is Jake Owen, who begins the show catching us up on

This week’s co-host is the CMA Entertainer of the Year Eric Church.  He was in our studio speaking with Lon on his birthday.  Lon brought him a present, as you can see in the picture.  As the show began, Lon wished Eric a happy birthday, but also asked why he chose to do this on his birthday: “I don’t wanna be with anyone else but Lon Helton on my 44th birthday. The older I get, the more laid back these things become.  Plus I just came off a 4-day golf trip for my birthday.”  More on that later.

Eric has just announced the Gather Again Tour, kicking off in the fall. He described it this way: “It’s a true middle-stage in the round, floor seats on every side, just one show per city.  We couldn’t do much more with Covid, because there’s a lot we don’t know. It’s been a nightmare just getting out in the fall.  We’re going to walk in and play, just us, with an intermission.”

He also just released 3 albums: Heart & Soul.  The 24 songs were recorded January 2020 in North Carolina.  Eric told Lon the process was intense: “I got to a manic kind of place. I was borderline unhealthy.  I didn’t sleep for days. I don’t think I could do it again. When it was over, it was like a re-entry to society.”

Hear more from Country Countdown USA Saturday morning at 9!