20 APR 2017
POSTED BY DAKOTA LINDSTROM
CMT joins as media partner, GLAAD returns as nonprofit partner
Ty Herndon’s 2017 Concert for Love & Acceptance, hosted by Cody Alan, announced its initial artist lineup, with more to be announced in the coming weeks. In addition to Ty Herndon, this year’s talent lineup already includes Billy Gilman, Kree Harrison, Ryan Kinder, Runaway June, Lorrie Morgan, Michael Ray, Street Corner Symphony, and Thompson Square. The event, created to support at-risk youth, will be held on Thursday, June 8th starting at 7 p.m. at Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville, Tenn.
Grammy-nominated and Dove Award winning artist, Ty Herndon created and co-hosted the first Concert for Love & Acceptance alongside GLAAD in 2015, when his 20th anniversary fan club party turned into a coalition of artists gathering in support of Nashville’s at-risk youth. The driving force behind the benefit is Herndon’s desire to foster positive cultural change and encourage Nashville’s youth to live to their fullest potential.
This year’s partners include media partner CMT and nonprofit partner GLAAD, as well as local sponsors Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, Wade Weissmann Architecture, and Retief Skin Center.
The first Concert for Love & Acceptance received national attention from Boston Globe, Rolling Stone, Entertainment Tonight, People Magazine and more. A philanthropist at heart, Herndon has also donated his time to organizations such as the Trevor Project, Make A Wish, St. Jude, GLAAD, HRC and Feed the Children.
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Ty Herndon to Appear on Oprah’s Where Are They Now? Airing Feb. 4
Enjoy a sneak-peak performance of “House On Fire” from the episode here
(Nashville, Tenn. – January 31, 2017) – Grammy-nominated and Dove Award winning artist, Ty Herndon will appear this Saturday, Feb. 4 on Oprah’s Where Are They Now?, airing on The Oprah Winfrey Network at 10/9c p.m.
The country-recording artist will share stories about his journey; a reflection on the personal challenges and struggles he’s faced and conquered, and how he’s continuously bettered himself as a musician by telling his truth through his music. Herndon will also discuss his latest studio album, House On Fire.
Herndon released his latest and most ambitious album to date, House on Fire, in November of 2016. The album is a collection of 12 songs, co-produced by Herndon and Nashville stalwart, Erik Halbig, that shows a deeper, greater strength from a man who has been there and back and lived to tell about it. Herndon is credited for co-writing six of the 12 tracks. The album has received critical accolades from the Nashville music community and beyond including USA Today, People, Huffington Post, Rolling Stone Country, Sounds Like Nashville and more.
A philanthropist at heart, Herndon has donated his time to organizations such as the Trevor Project, Make A Wish, St. Jude, GLAAD, HRC and Feed the Children. “Fighter,” a focal track from House On Fire, has garnered attention for having benefitted The Trevor Project, a national organization close to Herndon’s heart that provides crisis intervention and prevention throughout the LGBTQ community.
Herndon’s 20-year career has resulted in an impressive string of hits, including four No. 1’s (“What Mattered Most,” “Living in a Moment,” “It Must Be Love,” “Loved Too Much”), as well as numerous Top 10 hits, including “I Want My Goodbye Back,” “Loved Too Much,” “A Man Holding On (To a Woman Letting Go),” and “Hands of a Working Man.” He’s acquired 20 Billboard charted singles to his credit, numerous industry awards, and more than five million albums sold.
House on Fire is Ty Herndon’s eighth career studio album. As I listened to the album for the first time, it was like meeting up with an old friend and listening as he told me about his life experiences. He always was able to convey a lot of feeling with his compelling lyrics and charismatic voice. As I listened to his new album, I was reminded of another time, in another place.
It was during an interview back in 2004, I asked him if he could change anything in the music business, what would it be? His instantaneous reply was, “That everyone would be heard.” The compassion in his voice, and the determination on his face as he responded, lead me to believe he wasn’t only talking about music. He was a man on a mission, one soulful voice, hoping to make a difference in the world and considering his previous tenacity and resolve, I predicted he would succeed. Judging by the things we know about him now, and after listening to his newest album, I’m thinking I may have missed my calling as a pschyic.
The album, co-produced by Herndon and Erik Halbig, with Drew Davis as co-producer on six of the songs, gives a voice to Herndon’s wish that “everyone would be heard”. He takes full advantage of his powerful and marvelous voice to deliver lyrics that are destined to be meaningful to everyone who hears them. How is he able to deliver so much reality and passion via a song? The answer is simple, “If I haven’t lived it, I haven’t sung it,” he says.
Herndon addresses that feeling of brokenness on the title track, House on Fire, his first release since publicly coming out in late 2014. “I still replay those words / Only ten years old and hate is what I heard from that loving church / and there’s no salvation on the road you’re taking / and a kid like you ain’t worth saving,” he sings. “It took me two days to write that song because I kept getting so emotional that I had to walk out of the room,” he recalls. “Halfway through the process, my co-writers were feeling it too. I knew at that moment that I was not only writing my story, but I was writing a lot of people’s stories with these songs. All the pressure I’d felt just flew out the window at that point because I knew that my truth was a lot of people’s’ truth.”
“Stick With What I Know” is a stand out track for me. His voice on this track is the one that first caught my attention all those years ago and this song is one of those melodious tunes with simple lyrics that encourages you to sing along. Yep! I’ll “Stick With What I Know”.
Another stand out track for me is “Fighter”.
Between 1995 and 2002, Herndon charted seventeen singles, including his three No.1s and numerous top ten hits. He topped the charts again in 1996 with the single “Living in a Moment” and again in 1998 with “It Must Be Love.” In 2010, Herndon released the album, Journey On. It was his first venture into songwriting and not only did he receive a lot of critical acclaim, he earned a Grammy nomination and his first Dove award.
Longtime fans will love the new album. His dramatic vocals and heartfelt lyrics are what took his debut single, “What Mattered Most,” to number one and that same genuine passion for life and love is discernible on each of the twelve tracks. He told Rolling Stone, “I’m a country artist. And I’m a country artist who happens to be gay and some days I feel like I’m walking very thin line with it,” he says. “But I’m just trying to stay true to who I am and the music I’m making.”
Well Mr. Herndon, I was smitten by your incredible voice back in 1996 and I still am. I think I’m like the majority of your fans. We get it. We get you. And we are comforted by your voice, your lyrics, your music, your songs, because you are singing our lives.
“I want anybody, from any walk of life, to hear this record and put their own stories into it while still hearing mine.” Ty Herndon
REVIEW BY: NutsAboutCountry.com
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It’s been a memorable two years for country singer Ty Herndon. He has joined only a handful of country artists who have been brave enough to publicly come out as gay — a secret he hid through the height of his career in the early and mid-1990s. He also hit No. 1 with his debut single, “What Mattered Most,” and charted over a dozen songs during that decade. Eventually, he disappeared from the airwaves and battled with some personal issues that landed him in drug and alcohol rehabilitation.
Now, with his past behind him and his own personal truth in the open, Herndon has crafted an album that truly signals his return to country music.
House on Fire is Herndon’s eighth career studio album, which reclaims the magic that was sprinkled throughout his first three records. Overall, the project has a more polished and obvious Top 40 production behind it. That isn’t a complaint, though. Herndon’s pure yet twangy voice has always been the main element that has infused the country sound into every song.
From the first note of opening track “That Kind of Night,” listeners are taken through an uplifting and purely joyful mix of love songs, biting anthems and unapologetic goodbyes. It’s one of his strongest collections of records since 1998’s Big Hopes, which produced three Top 5 tracks.
Of course, country music has changed a lot since 1998 — and so has Herndon. But the themes ingrained in these songs are likely to connect just as strongly with country fans as his earlier works. That’s likely in part a result of Herndon’s efforts to shy away from specifically referencing males or females in the songs. Although he happens to be a gay man, Herndon’s music is for everyone.
“What’s different about this record is that it’s gender-free,” Herndon told Wide Open Country earlier this year. “If you’re a diehard country fan who’s married woman with nine kids in Des Moines, or if you’re an LGBT person in Chicago, you’re going to hear your life in this record.”
Instead of focusing on gender, Herndon chooses to dial into the situations we’ve all been in. From the rush and fear of taking the next step in “Just Friends,” to the satisfaction of telling off an awful ex in “If You,” Herndon becomes the narrator of our lives.
It’s hard to pinpoint a handful of standout tracks, because like any great album, this one is meant to be heard all the way through.
by Lorie Liebig for Wide Open Country
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Longtime fans of Ty Herndon will hear much to enjoy on his new album, House on Fire, which releases Friday, Nov. 11. His expressive vocals, the surging romance of his lyrics — all the things that put him on the map with his No. 1 debut single What Mattered Most are evident on each of its 12 tracks.
But there are differences. Listen closely to Just Friends, with its nod to “our little secret,” or the promise that “tonight we’re gonna do whatever we want to do” on All Night Tonight, or the admonition “don’t tell” on Sweet Way To Go. For all their expressions of love and intimacy, there’s no reference at all to gender.
Mention that to Herndon, 54, and he chuckles. “You got me,” he acknowledges. “But it wasn’t planned. When we were writing these songs, Erik (Halbig, producer) pointed that out. And I said, ‘Man, there are no accidents.’ I want anybody, from any walk of life, to hear this record and put their own stories into it while still hearing mine.”
Ty Herndon, right, shows off his shoes as Matt Collum
Ty Herndon, right, shows off his shoes as Matt Collum watches on the red carpet for the 50th CMA Awards at Bridgestone Arena. (Photo: George Walker IV, The Tennessean/USA TODAY Sports)
The latest chapter in Herndon’s story began just two years ago, when he came out as gay — the first major male country performer to take that step. While House on Fire proves that his musical essence hasn’t changed, his message has evolved, mostly through details in his writing but, on the title track, much more frankly and powerfully.
“It took me two days to write that song because I kept getting so emotional that I had to walk out of the room,” he recalls. “Halfway through the process, my co-writers were feeling it too. I knew at that moment that I was not only writing my story, but I was writing a lot of people’s stories with these songs. All the pressure I’d felt just flew out the window at that point because I knew that my truth was a lot of people’s’ truth.”
Herndon savors the exhilaration of being able to live openly with his partner Matt Collum and the opportunities he’s found for counseling homeless youth, working with GLAAD and other worthy pursuits. Yet at heart, he insists, he’s pretty much what he’s always been … only more so.
“If I ever make it to Carnegie Hall, I’m not gonna preach — I’m just gonna sing,” he insists. “There’s a time and place for everything
by Bob Doerschuk, Special for USA TODAY
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