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Amanda Hensel

If a passion for music and a knack for writing make a career, then color Amanda Hensel lucky. She is the product of writers -- apparently when you add two news journalists together, you get one music journalist. She currently resides in 'the live music capital of the world,' where she snagged a journalism degree from the University of Texas. Although she's grounded in Austin, Hensel's name travels -- in her short career, she has cited her passion writing for AOL Music Blog, Fringe Magazine, the Houston Press and various other publications.
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Johnny Cash Birthday Celebration Brings Out Friends, Family + Fans in Texas

Johnny Cash would have turned 80-years-old this year, and though he isn't alive to celebrate his birthday, the celebrations continue. On Friday night (April 20), Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theatre in Austin, Texas was packed nearly to capacity with eager fans, friends and family members who came together for a party in the late Man in Black's honor.

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Jordis Unga
NBC
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Jordis Unga Swaps Rock for Country With Sara Evans’ ‘A Little Bit Stronger’ on ‘The Voice’

Following a smashing -- albeit typical -- performance from fellow Team Blake Shelton member RaeLynn, rocker Jordis Unga tried to hold onto her spot with a little country music of her own on Monday's live episode of 'The Voice.' Per instruction by coach Shelton, Unga swapped her leather pants and gritty rockers for a feminine pink dress and a copy of Sara Evans' smash 'A Little Bit Stronger.'

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RaeLynn
NBC
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RaeLynn Declares ‘She’s Country’ With Growly Jason Aldean Cover on ‘The Voice’

She may be the youngest contender, but RaeLynn proved she's a leader -- with sex appeal beyond her years -- on Monday's live quarterfinals episode of 'The Voice.' The 17-year-old country born and bred hopeful kicked things off for Team Blake Shelton, packing a punch with a female version of Jason Aldean's 'She's Country.'

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Granger Smith, Rick Perry Walk
Amanda Hensel for TasteofCountry.com
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Granger Smith Begins 100-Mile Walk in Texas With Gov. Rick Perry in Tow

Granger Smith will literally be 'Sleeping on the Interstate' this week as he begins his second-annual 100-mile walk for the troops. The Texas-based singer-songwriter took off from south Austin on Sunday afternoon (April 15), followed closely behind by Texas state Governor Rick Perry, United States Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell and a supportive group of family, friends and fellow walkers.

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RaeLynn 'The Voice'
NBC
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RaeLynn Shoots Down ‘The Voice’ Competition With Maroon 5′s ‘Wake Up Call’

On Monday's first Live Shows episode of 'The Voice,' it was Team Blake Shelton vs. Team Christina Aguilera -- two powerful teams taking the stage one by one to show viewers their worth. But none felt quite as heavy, or worth their weight in gold, as 17-year-old country sparkplug RaeLynn.

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Jerrod Niemann Bus Fire
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Jerrod Niemann’s Bus Catches Fire in Tennessee [NSFW]

Late Tuesday night (March 6), Jerrod Niemann's tour bus went up in flames in Chattanooga, Tenn., Taste of Country has learned. The 'Lover, Lover' hitmaker appeared at Heart Strings for Hope, a benefit for St. Jude Children's Hospital, and was just wrapping up when the bus broke out in flames around 10:45PM ET.

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Adley Stump
Adley Stump Facebook
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Adley Stump Impresses Blake Shelton With Carrie Underwood’s ‘Last Name’ on ‘The Voice’

It's obvious from her blind audition performance that Adley Stump has country music in her blood. Now, the Tulsa, Okla. native has a home on NBC's 'The Voice' -- thanks to her grizzly rendition of Carrie Underwood's 'Last Name' that got both Blake Shelton and Christina Aguilera spinning in their chairs... Literally.

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Ronnie Dunn Grandson
Ethan Miller, Getty Images / Ronnie Dunn Facebook
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Ronnie Dunn Welcomes First Grandchild

Congratulations are in order for Ronnie Dunn and his family -- the 'Cost of Livin'' singer became a grandfather for the first time on Sunday (Feb. 26). Dunn found the news especially exciting, as his new grandson was lucky enough to be born on Johnny Cash's birthday.

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