Who Is Crystal Hoyt

My photo
Crystal Hoyt is a Country Recording Artist and Songwriter. For the past 3 years she has toured the country as part of the country trio Trailer Choir. (She has recently gone solo) "Earlier this year I was recovering from a surgery, and I was just BORED! I began writing every day. I started thinking about all the questions that I would get asked on the road the last few years. I had become quite a "do-it-yourself" girl with hair, make-up, fashion and fitness. I never mind giving away my tips. Since I supported myself as a make-up artist for years before making it in music, there will be lots of beauty tips and advice. I will share advice on fitness, and travel. I love wine, shoes, cooking and shopping, so I'm sure that you will see plenty about all of that here too. Basically, I'll be sharing info on just about anything I enjoy or I'm curious about. And of course I will be taking you along for the ride on my musical journey! Hope you enjoy - Knowing me, I'm sure it'll be an interesting one!" To view full bio - Please visit www.crystalhoyt.com

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Few Of My Favorite Things! JUST A Tiny Bit Less Glamorous Than Oprah...

So, in the spirit of one of my favorite shows, and greatest inspirations,  Oprah,   I have decided to create a list of my favorite things this month.(After all, her show did inspire me to pack up and move to Nashville)

Now,  I'll warn you, it's a little less glamorous than Oprah. There are no FREE giveaways (yet), and you may not react this way when reading it... -

But it's full of fun, and useful information all the same!  So here are the



Woooo FRIGGIN' Whooooooo!  This has been MONTH's in the making! Thanks so much to my friends Lauren Johnston & Jimmy Thorn for the graphic work, and to my friend Eric Scism for being the ultimate WEB MASTER and getting this all wrapped up in time for CMA FEST!!!! 

2. ALL of these wonderful little beauty items!

Left To Right -
A. Essie Nail Polish in Watermelon - Painted my little "Piggies" this color for Summer and LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it! It's the Perfect summer "Pop of Color".  Get it here -Buy Essie Polish
B. Flirty Little Secret Firming Bronzer by Victoria's Secret. Now anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE me some body bronzer... and throw some firming agents in... um, I'm S-O-L-D!  Get it here - Buy Body Bronzer
C. Tan Towel - I've tried these before and forgot how awesome these are when you are in a hurry to get just a little extra color... and you don't have to be in any way skilled at self tanning to use them. You won't get a LOT of color... just a hint of bronze. Perfect for a beginner... And my favorite feature - You can use it on your face too!  Buy Tan Towel Here
D. Sugar Free Jello! At only 10 calories a serving, I can attempt to drown late night cravings with a couple of these guys if needed and they are GREAT for Hangovers... not that I would know ANYTHING about those???  Find them at your fave grocery store or market!
E. Lancome Progres (pronounced "Pro-Gray") Eye Cream. This has been my favorite eye cream for over 10 years. (Let's just say I started using it practically out of high school :)  and I still SWEAR by it! Here's the only  problem... it's been around so long, that you have to know to ask for it by name at most department stores... It's not cheap, but it lasts FOREVER, and it's worth more than 10 of the one's you could find anywhere else. 
F. Dry Shampoo - For the girl OR GUY on the go - who can't/shouldn't wash their hair daily... this stuff is crucial! I don't know how I lived without it... and I can't wait to introduce my mom to it since her hair is growing back after chemo. You can go 2-3 days without washing, and most importantly BLOW DRYING with this little gem! Buy Dry Shampoo Here

3. Beer Can Chicken 

So, not that I'm suggesting that drinking the actual beer itself is healthy, but the CHICK-CAN is! My mom gave us one of these racks and we found a great recipe here: Beer Can Chicken On The Food Network It's super easy, super cheap, and delicious. We make it ALL the time now !

And if you play your cards right...Playing with your food, can be FUN! :)

4. Wine, and Wine Accessories...

I just "rediscovered" this  '08 Louis Latour Grand Ardeche Chardonnay.  It is a "catch"... Well, at approx $12.99 a bottle, it's actually a steal!

And I WISH I could remember where THIS came from! I't a bottle stopper/pour'er all in one. The clamp at the bottom turns it into a bottle stopper that seals in the freshness and flavor of the wine, but wait! Just flip the clamp up, and you have a fantastic pouring agent.  For the SUPER LAZY wine enthusiast, who just can't be bothered to remove the wine stopper... it's a MUST!

5. Lavender Epsom Salt  Bath Soak  - I have been hitting the workouts pretty hard these days to play catch up for a few month of "slightly slacking" , and let me tell you... nothing is  more relaxing or better for swollen, potentially SORE muscles than this soak. I get mine at Walgreens.

6. It's S.S.S Time again! My love for Slight Slutty Shoes hasn't gone away - and if I've learned anything from Dolly, it never will! I wore these when I performed on the Billy Block Show last week, and they made me feel like a million! I wanted to cut my pinky toes off by the time I got home - but it was worth it!

Here's a video of the show where I was rockin' these bad boys!

7. Couture goes Trailer! 
I love the Beckham's, but is it just me or does Victoria look like she's possibly auditioning to be a new cast member on Jersey Shore these days? Or better yet... maybe she's going for Trailer Park Chic? hmmm.. either way, I think it's fun, haha! :) And makes me feel a little more justified in my sometimes "less than understated" fashion choices.

8. Homemade Protein Bars! These taste decent...they are easy to make, it's less expensive than pre-packaged bars, and you end up with very few fillers or preservatives!
Get the recipe here...
Do It Yourself- Protein Bars

Well there ya have it! Sorry I didn't have the give away's that make you make a complete A$$ of yourself on national TV, but I hope you enjoyed it, and that it maybe even made you smile a time or two!


Monday, May 23, 2011

Healthy Pizza? Seriously, yes! Get Crystal-Ized Recipes!

Tonight I tweeted about a PIZZA that was incredibly healthy, easy to make, and approx $1.69 per serving. I bet you're thinking what I thought, "No friggin' WAY!"...

Well, think again. 
It was DELICIOUS and very good for me! Who knew?     I did!

Here is what is sure to be one of my new favorite recipes...

BBQ CHICKEN PIZZA (from Oxygen Fitness Magazine)

1 frozen WHOLE WHEAT Pizza Crust
1/2 Red Onion
1 tsp Olive Oil
2 Boneless Chicken Breasts, Cooked and Cubed
2 Cups LOW SUGAR (read your label, and try to find a sauce with less than 8 grams of sugar per serving)
1/2 Bunch fresh Cilantro
4 oz Smoked Mozzarella

1. Bake crust according to package directions
2. Saute Red onion in Olive Oil until browned
3. Add chicken to BBQ Sauce, bring to a boil
4. Reduce heat and simmer until sauce thickens and clings to the chicken
5. Spread this mixture over crust
6. Sprinkle with Cilantro and cheese
7. Heat in oven @ 400 degrees until cheese is melted 

Nutrition Info:

Calories : 332
Fat: 8 g
Carbs: 37 g
Fiber : 2 g
Protein 28g 

Serving is two small slices. 

I served it with this wonderul,  LOW CALORIE side dish! 
Spicy Roasted Turnips

·         2 lbs. turnips
·         1 Tbsp. olive oil
·         Salt
·         Pepper
·         Tony's Cajun Seasoning
1.     Preheat oven to 400. Trim turnips. Leave baby turnips whole; cut larger turnips into large-ish bite-size pieces. Put turnips into a baking pan. Drizzle with olive oil. Use your hands or two large spoons to toss the turnips to coat them thoroughly with the oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and Tony's
2.     Roast turnips until tender and browned, about 30 minutes.
Nutrition Info
- Calories: 52
- Protein: 1 g
- Carbs 7g
- Sodium: 343 mg
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
- Fat: 2 g

Hope you enjoy! 
I sure did.... 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Long Time Gone...


I've been a LITTLE BIT busy, and I have clearly been neglecting my blog!

But at least I've been busy with my MUSIC!
I have been writing songs like crazy, playing shows, rehearsing, recording, working on a brand new website and about 100 other things....

I have a LOT of fun blogs in mind to post soon...
In the meantime, here is a new video with new music and and some great archive footage from the last few years in case you are new here, or haven't seen what I have been up to for the last few years...

And here is a BRAND new song that I wrote with Ben Caver and Blake Bollinger. It was inspired by all the people we have seen give back after all the tragedies we have seen over the past few years... Katrina, Tsunami, and most recently the storms in Alabama and Georgia. (Ben is from Alabama) We had a great time writing and recording it (even though I had a MASSIVE Chardonnay hangover that day!!)... And this tune has gotten A LOT of great feedback...

Love Wins by CrystalHoyt


If you are in Nashville soon, please join me on May 31st at the Rutledge for The Billy Block Show. I will be performing at 9PM. 

And next week I will be announcing my CMA Fest schedule!

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On!

Whew - Ok, I have been a LITTLE BIT BUSY!!!
That's a major understatement...
Here's a basic little recap of what's been happening...

I performed my first solo show in 4 years on March 8th at 12th and Porter in Nashville, TN.

See videos and pics here...

See Pictures Here!

On March 11th I was honored to perform the National Anthem for US Navy Commanding Officer Micheal Neuser's formal "Change of Command" and Retirement Ceremony at the War Memorial Theater in Downtown Nashville.

With 2 of the 200 uniformed Navy service men and women who were present at the ceremony.
With Commander Micheal Neuser and his family.

The week of March 14th, I had a recording session, followed by 4 writing appointments- resulting in 3 new songs - and I had no less than 5 meetings, including a meeting with Wendy Newcomer of GAC. (stay tuned her and www.gactv.com for very fun news soon) and I also added new music to my online sources. 

Hear new music here-

I confirmed my next show with "Mr Nashville", Billy Block for April 12th! (  More details coming soon)

 And, this week has started with a bang! Today, I wrote a song with Brian Davis and Tammy Kidd at Curb Music Publishing followed by a meeting with Ralph Murphy at ASCAP and  I have had several meetings working on building my team.  Now I'm exhausted, and trying to get ready to work out and then  pack to fly to Austin, TX this weekend to attend a wedding.

It's all been overwhelming and exciting at the same time! 

Next week I am booked every single day of the week with writing appointments with some of my favorite co-writers and I should have even more fun news to share... now it's time to go work on shaping up the ol' BOOTY!!! 

Stay tuned! 


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Is It Almost Bikini Time Again, ALREADY???

Eat Healthy, Work Out = Be Healthy, Be Happy!

I started this blog about 6 weeks ago when I was flat on my back recovering from surgery. Once I found out that all was well with outcome of my surgery, the thought on my mind was..

I grew up always being the "chubby kid". In high school (due to medications and poor diet) I ballooned to nearly 200lbs at 5'3". So over the years, diet and fitness have become a VERY important part of my life. Of course because image in the entertainment industry is very important, but mostly because I found that everything about my physical and mental health improved as my body changed. Working out and eating right became just as important for my mind and soul as it was for my body.

At the time of my diagnosis, I was doing some sort of strength training and cardio NO LESS than 5 days a week. I was in the best shape that I had ever been in... and for probably the first time EVER I didn't hate my legs! (That was quite an accomplishment for someone who has hated their legs their entire life!)

So to hear the words, "No running, or lifting anything more than 8lbs for almost 6 weeks"... terrified me! I wasn't even allowed to do yoga, or basic toning... just walking!

Well, that time has finally expired.(Praise the Lord) Now, the biggest problem I face after this short period of time, is reconditioning myself to eating correctly for my regimen again... and getting my body readjusted to working out again.

The first thing I had to learn about nutrition and fitness years ago, is that the mentality has to become an entire LIFESTYLE... you can't put yourself on a "90 day" program, or a 6 week  "info-mercial" make-over, and expect that as soon as you complete the program you can just quit working out and "dieting" and not re-gain the weight again and loose muscle - as well as loose all your hard earned results.

Now, at some point in my life, I have tried EVERY "Fad Diet", "As Seen On TV", and "Info-mercial" plan out there! And I learned att some point all of these things can work, but only if you are doing ALL of the other things that you need to do to make them work- and most of the time they are only a quick fix. You have to make a choice to completely change your lifestyle and make eating correctly all the time and working out as important as washing your underwear, and paying your electric bill.

Now I have been watching my diet during the time that I have been "down"... but not quite the same way that I would knowing that I would be baring my body more- ex. photo shoot, formal event, video shoot, or just wearing shorts, or better yet - A BIKINI!

And let's face it - It's almost that time of year again... SO HERE GOES!

It's time to get back to the basics -

Here are some very general rules that I follow for my diet and fitness program. I figured writing it down here would also help me as I get back on track again myself.

Below are very basic and generalized guidelines that I personally follow...

*Eat Small Portions 6-7 times a day.
My common joke is that I eat like an infant. If I don't feed my body about every 3 hours, I turn into a complete "low blood sugar" BITCH! This is something that I never realized when I was heavy... getting to the point of "Staving" only made me eat more, and make bad food choices - not to mention that it makes your body think that it's starving and keeps it from burning more calories! So now I always keep high protein, high fiber,  low calorie snacks on me to help fight cravings and keep my blood sugar levels balanced. And the big trick is to STOP EATING WHEN YOU ARE NO LONGER HUNGRY! My favorite trick to retrain my eye and my tummy was to immediately ask for a "To Go" container when my entree was delivered - or try to split an entree with someone else. Half-ing a normal restaurant portion immediately is a great way to save a little dough, and it's usually MORE THAN ENOUGH food  for anyone! As Americans, we have become so accustomed to GIANT portions that this sounds horrific to most people, which explains why we have such a problem with obesity in this country. And a great trick I love when eating at home is to  fix myself a "salad plate" of dinner instead of using an actual dinner plate. If I'm still hungry afterwards, I can have more - but usually I'm satisfied with the smaller amount.

along with this -

*Read Your Package Labels and Measure Your Food!
Read what a portion size is on a package and actually measure it out! You would be AMAZED at the difference in what you think a portion is, and what a proper portion really is. It makes all the difference in your choices - and how you can control what and how much you put in your body!

 *Sugar Is The DEVIL!!!
Of all the things that you will ever hear about dieting -this is the one thing that consistently rings true. You HAVE to watch the amount of sugar you intake all the time. It's in EVERYTHING and if you don't read labels and are not fully aware of what you are putting in your body, you defeat everything you are working hard for, by simply putting the wrong things in your mouth.  I do not drink soda at all anymore... including diet soda. Once in a while, I will have a weak moment - and just NEED a Diet Coke, or a Diet Sunkist (SO GOOD!) but when I realized how defeating soda and fruit juice can be to a healthy diet, I decided  to treat them as just that, A TREAT!  Now I try to keep all junk food and sugar OUT OF THE THE HOUSE and try to only enjoy them occasionally OUTSIDE OF MY HOUSE or as a once in a while treat. I will share a dessert, or have the occasional juice with breakfast at Cracker Barrel or IHOP, but I will not keep any of these things in my house regularly as a general rule because I know that I LOVE SUGAR and I just don't have the will power to stay away from it if it's right there in front of me all day/night.

*Calories Are The Most Important Thing To Count -not JUST Fat, not JUST Carbs, not JUST sugar!
At the end of the day, CALORIES are where you gain, loose, or maintain a healthy weight. Do your homework on this!!!! All  diet programs that work LONG TERM are based on balancing YOUR CALORIC INTAKE. It's why systems based on "points" and food diary's work... at the end of the day, they are keeping you below or within a certain number of calories. This is different for every single person, and every person's goals... so when in doubt talk with a specialist, a nutritionist, or a personal trainer (who has GOOD KNOWLEDGE of nutrition) Some very simple ways to cut calories  - Stay away from creamy or sugary salad dressings - and always ask for these on the side, try to use about 1/3 of what is served at a restaurant. Order foods without cheese, or easy on the cheese if possible. Opt for a baked sweet potato (PLAIN- no butter or sugar) instead of a "dressed" Baked Potato. Cut out Cheese and Mayo on Sandwiches. Try to stay away from processed foods as much as possible... This is tough, but has been proven the healthiest way to eat. When you "Eat Clean" you consume less calories, less sodium, and less preservatives. It's sometimes more expensive, and not always feasible - but it's a great practice to try to follow.
  Click Here For More Information On Eating Clean
Here is one of my favorite magazines and websites for fitness and nutrition information -
Oxygen Magazine and Website

*Most "White" Foods Are Pointless...
Almost anything "white" has little to no nutritional value. And it's usually just converted right back into sugar in your body. White Bread, White Rice, Pasta, Potatoes,  etc... When looking at "starches" you should ALWAYS opt for WHOLE GRAIN - and read your packages, if  you buy Whole Wheat Bread and the first ingredient doesn't start with the words "100% Whole Grain" or "Whole Wheat"... it's not that much different than buying the white bread... Go for brown rice, "whole grain breads", "whole wheat pasta'...etc. and don't be fooled by a lot of the new "whole grain cereals" out there... it's easy to slap the word "whole grain" on a SUGAR based cereal to make it sound healthier.

I used to HATE training with weights because I have a very muscular build to begin with and I like the look of a long lean body. In the past I always found that I got a "bulky" look from weight training - this is a common complaint from women...It took me years to discover that the look of a "bulky" body when I tried weight training had much more to do with my DIET and lack of cardio than the actual weights. If I was eating the proper amount of calories, mixed with the right amount of complex carbohydrates and proteins... adding weights to my routine sculpted a much more toned and lean body.  Now I'm back to starting over again with weight training, and rebuilding my cardio endurance.  I am going to experience the soreness that is involved as I retrain and "re-shock" my muscles... which quite frankly just SUCKS at first, but it is SO, SO worth it in the end.  After being on the road for almost 3 straight years, I learned one thing. There is NO EXCUSE for not working out... I have done everything from gyms to working out in an 8'x8' space in hotel rooms. If you can't get to a gym - there is still no excuse for not doing SOME SORT OF WORK OUT - at least a few days a week!

Here are some programs I have enjoyed on the road and at home -
Josh Rogers is the trainer I worked with to get ready for several music videos, and photo shoots. His "No Excuses" DVD is a great start for ANYONE, and working with him one on one is what I would recommend for anyone who is looking to take fitness to the next level.
Energy Fitness By Josh

Here are two other programs I have enjoyed on the road -

P90X 90 Day Fitness Routine
Brazilian Butt Lift

So as a VERY GENERAL recap, here are some things that I always try to remember. 
Eat Small Portions,  Read Food Package Labels, Sugar is THE DEVIL, Limit or Eliminate "White" Food, Count your Calories, and Work Out!

I will keep a weekly update here of my progress, and hopefully by the time I get to put on a BIKINI AGAIN (cringe)  in a couple of months - I will be able to strut my stuff with limited JIGGLE! :)


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Shimmery Bronze Smokey Eyes!

Well, You will get a little bit of everything I'm into here in this blog... The next blog I will post will deal with Fitness and Nutrition since (6 weeks after surgery)I am finally able to get back into my regular practice of working out again... which I started LAST NIGHT - and I sit here now with a VERY, VERY sore behind in a hard wooden chair typing at this very moment. :)

TODAY however - You are going to get another fun - VERY detailed tutorial on creating a


I am getting a little more skilled with filming and editing this, so this video will give you a few more up close and personal details of how to create this look...

For those of you who are afraid of going with the full BLACK or CHARCOAL smokey eye, this is a beautiful alternative.

What you will need...

- A Neutral Cream Eyeshadow or a Neutral Eyeshadow Base
-Loose or Pressed Powder to set
- An assortment of loose or pressed shimmery eyeshadows in shades ranging from Cream or Beige to Gold, to bronze to Dark Brown
- Several Blending brushes
-Creamy Black or Black/Brown eyeliner
-And eyeliner brush, preferably angled
-Black Matte Powder Eyeshadow/Eyeliner
-BLACK mascara - and False Eyelashes are optional

- You MUST properly conceal under eye circles and discoloration (and we ALL have these, if we are over the age of 13!!!) to pull off a smokey eye!!!! Do not assume that using your foundation alone here is enough coverage.
Chanel Under Eye Concealer

- Start with a NEAUTRAL CREAM EYESHADOW or an EYESHADOW BASE! Dark colors need to go on a completely neutral canvas. We all get discoloration in our eyelids because the skin is so thin there... so be sure to even the color with a Cream eyeshadow or an eyeshadow base. This also helps the powder shadows STAY ON LONGER by giving them something other than skin oils to hold onto (which eventually lead to creasing and smearing) And never forget to SET your cream shadows or Eyeshadow base with a little powder to keep them from "grabbing" the color too strongly when first applied. 
Eyeshadow base by Lancome

- Always warm up colors on your hand or a tissue before applying to your eyes... and I always apply dark color with  a firm brush, and blend with a completely separate blending brush. This gives you so much more control of the darker colors.

Eye Shadow Brushes

Here are more detailed pictures of some of my favorite products that I used to create this look, as well as products I enjoy using to create different versions of this look...

Mac Loose Pigments

Victoria's Secret Highlighting Powder

Victoria's Secret Brilliant Shimmer Shadow

Maybelline Eye Studio Shadow Quad

I love to wear this look, and have worn this on MANY an occasion both on and off stage. The photo I'm using at the end of this video is from the CMA Awards Show Dog- Universal After Party this year - I wore this look to compliment my gold/sage After Party Dress compliments of Bebe.

Enjoy creating your own Sexy Smokey Shimmery Bronze Eye Look!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Wonder Of Wonderful Parents

Recently I have been spending some time at night watching old episodes of “ The Wonder Years”.  I marvel at how well the production, acting, and especially the writing of this show was executed.  This show really captured the beauty of an American family and all the ups and downs of childhood and growing up. And they REALLY captured the ups and downs of the love and respect issues that we all struggle with during not only adolescence , but also throughout our entire lives.

In the last several weeks, I have spent a lot of time thinking about my family and how important their support has been to me. Watching this show reminds me of all the GRIEF I put them through as a teenager… and how sometimes I really didn’t appreciate just how lucky I was to have two parents together who loved me so much, and  who support and love me still.

My mother recovered from Stage 2 Breast Cancer in October of last year.  I had surgery just about 5 weeks ago that was a little scary, but  thankfully,  I came out with a clean bill of health. Then, just about 3 weeks ago, my Daddy was admitted to the hospital for severe staph infections in both of his knee replacements (which were originally replaced when I was a child). He has had a really rough go of it, but he will finally be going home tomorrow for a few weeks. 

All of these circumstances, have made me reevaluate my own life, and decisions about my future. They have also made me realize how even on the worst days, I am still so lucky to have two people who even in all the hard times they are going through, still love and support me no matter what. 

And the fact that they stood by me through the ever blessed “HIGH SCHOOL YEARS” pretty much is beyond my ability to comprehend!

So THANK YOU momma and daddy for being so WONDERFUL!

Here is a clip of one of my favorite episodes of “The Wonder Years” – I dare you to try to watch this without crying.

And here is a song that I performed for my mom -  “I Am A Woman” - at The Chords For A Cure Benefit in my hometown the week of her final cancer treatment.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

National Anthem Performance And An Awesome Night With Friends

This will have to be brief today. LOTS to do.

But I will share a bit about my evening last night.

I started the night by performing the National Anthem at the sold out (17,000 plus) Nashville Predators Hockey game against the Colorado Avalanche. The Preds won, and my "streak" continues. The last 17 anthems that I have been a part of performing has brought a victory for the home team... Now I'm not saying I'm the lucky charm, but I like to think that maybe there is something to this "Streak"!

I then had a quick change to dress up a bit, and then it was OFF to Maggiano's Little Italy for my best friend Dan's party that he had planned for his partner Victor's 50th Birthday.

It was a BLAST! We consumed a LOT of food and wine... and laughed a LOT!!!! I think we scared off most of the patrons with our volume!

With Charlie and Brian

Dan and Victor with Victors sister and her husband

Me and Victor - Happy Birthday VIC!

I then went out to see my friends Kelly and Amy and our buddies, who had all been at the Hockey game earlier... and we proceeded to play all the 80's music the jukebox had to offer... and make complete fools of ourselves. And we LOVED every minute of it!
With my very good friends Amy and Kelly

With Amy and my Kell-Bell!
 I also ran into my new friends Lee Ann and Tyler at Decades, where there was more dancing to 80's music...
With my new friends Lee Ann and Tyler

I got home really late and slept in today to recover... Now I need a major shower, and I'm getting ready to support my friends who are nominated for Grammy's tonight.

Great weekend!

Friday, February 11, 2011

What Amazing Night For An Amazing Cause

Last night I participated in great event for a truly great cause.

"Songs For The Cure" is an event organized by Nile "Big Daddy"  Peaytt. It was held last night at The Red Rooster on Demonbreun, in Nashville... and it was a GREAT turn out - both in audience and in "line-up". Hit songwriters left and right... and all to benefit a very sick little girl named Savannah.

Nile "Big Daddy" Peaytt

Unfortunately, Savannah had to be admitted to hospice that day, as was not able to be at the event, but everyone who set foot on the stage was sending her love and happy thoughts, and lots of songs!

The event was hosted by GAC's Storme Warren, and was broken into segments of 4 songwriters/artists in each group and we all played 2 songs a piece. 

I was featured in the second round of songwriters and played two new songs that I wrote a couple of months ago, and I was backed up by my very good friend Eddie Heinzelman. While I was onstage, this ADORABLE little boy named Clinton jumped up and played shaker for us... and before our set was up we had a whole stage just FULL of kids! It was a great experience.

Me and SWEET Clinton!

Performing my first song "Whiskey Makes Me Want You Back"

Eddie Heinzelman backing me up on guitar

Getting "High Fives" from a stage full of precious kids!

My good buddy Keith Anderson (who I have been friends with for over 10 years) headlined later, and was backed up by another very good friend, and co-writer Chad Warrix. Darryl Worley made an appearance to support the cause and play some of his hits as well.

One of my favorite parts of the evening was a little girl named Ireland. She had her own booth set up by the back bar, and she was giving manicures for donations. She raised over $200! The best part is, I never saw a single woman in her booth. But there were men lined up left and right to have her paint their digits in an array of shades from pink, to purple, to red. It was fantastic!

Keith Anderson and Darryl Worley with sweet Clinton

Ireland painting the boys nails
Host Storme Warren getting his sassy pink polish!

Big Daddy with his pretty manicure!

It was such a great time, and a truly moving experience to see all these amazing talents come together to support this incredible little girl as she fights for her life.

Thanks to Eddie and Big Daddy Nile for inviting me to be part of such a special event.

For more information on upcoming events please follow "Songs For The Cure" Here...

(Also, I ran into Melody Guy -incredible songwriter - and she sent me this today, a demo I sang for she and Quinn Loggins YEARS ago! I still love this song... enjoy.)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Bat Those Incredibly FALSE Lashes!

Bat Those Incredibly False Lashes!
(Video Tutorial Below)

So, every time you see a photo in a magazine, a commercial on tv, or a pic of a celebrity on the red carpet and think…" I WANT TO HAVE THOSE EYELASHES!" 
These are clearly NOT her lashes... but they look amazing!

Well, ladies, you are NOT alone, So DOES She!!!!!! As with a LOT of things in the beauty industry… 

They are usually FAKE!   

Now here is my biggest problem...  MASCARA  ADS! They are almost all using FAKE LASHES to promote the actual mascara… as if you could EVER get those crazy long, thick, and perfectly separated  lashes just from the mascara! Even if it's a great mascara - THIS look requires a little "outside help"...

My favorite new mascara that really does give you fuller, thicker, longer lashes, but NOTHING LIKE THE ONES IN THIS AD that is clearly using actual FALSE EYELASHES

What they should be saying is… “Ladies, this is a great mascara – But if you REALLY want Kim Kardashian or Eva Longoria Parker’s lashes… you should do what their make-up artists do, and just GLUE THEM ON!

Kim Kardashian with and without her infamous False lashes

Eva Longoria Parker with and without some SERIOUS FALSE LASHES

Now I don’t recommend that everyone needs to wear false lashes all the time, but for a special occasion, a photo shoot, an evening out, or just for fun it... they can add a huge boost to the overall look of your eyes. 

There are MANY different types of false lashes. You can choose -

Individual Lashes

Partial Lashes

Strip Lashes

I personally find the easiest to apply, that are the most effective for just about anyone to use are Strip lashes...

Follow this simple tutorial here to learn how to easily apply False (Strip) Eyelashes.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Today I Begin A New Journey...


 I have important news to share with you. 2010 has been an incredible and challenging year for me and my family. I look forward to the potential that 2011 has to bring, and I know that God is watching over all of us to show us the way to a bright future.

Today I will be leaving the group that I have come to call  my family,  that you all have come to know as Trailer Choir. I do so with complete respect and appreciation for my very dear friends Butter and Big Vinny. We are parting ways on mutually amicable terms, and we are all very proud of our work and efforts together. Right now,  I am focusing on writing music and preparing for the next chapter in my life. As always I am so grateful for all of you, and I appreciate the support that you have shown me through out the years. I ask you to join me in continuing to support my friends in Trailer Choir (and their supporting band who are also like my brothers) as they continue on  their journey. Working with this group has been an amazing experience, and I wish them nothing but the best.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Time To Apply Your TAN!!!

Last week I was involved in a photo shoot. Now before any event that is going to require me to show a little skin... I like to have at least a little bit of color on my skin. Now, based on the blatant dangers of overexposing from the sun and tanning beds,

I am trying to stay away from conventional indoor tanning... and a few years ago I discovered the wonderful, incredible, amazing VERSA Tan!

This is the fastest, prettiest, airbrush tan(that doesn't require you to strip naked in front of a complete stranger to be sprayed), if you have the time to get to the tanning salon... It's not exactly cheap, but for special occasions, it's wonderful!

Now - this will only last for about 6 days. So two days ago I was leaving town with the boys to go to VA Beach to play a show. Now based on the limited amount of skin that is covered in my stage wardrobe, I decided I better freshen up my tan a bit.

But I didn't have time to make a return trip to the tanning salon for another VERSA Spray - so what's a girl to do?

Do it Yourself!

Now after MANY failed attempts, I have now learned the art of applying a flawless "Self Tan"... And there are truly "Do's" and "Don'ts" when it comes to this art form!

No one wants to end up looking like this, well, maybe the subjects in the photos like this look... but it's usually not preferred by most...

So I thought I would share my process here..

Now - I will not be sharing a VIDEO of me applying Self Tanning Lotion, as I do recommend that you do this in the NUDE... and give yourself a few minutes to dry also in this state - so I will be using some visual aids, thanks to Google Images.

1. Start with clean, preferably freshly EXFOLIATED skin.
2. Apply regular moisturizing CREAM or LOTION to anything on your body that BENDS.
Meaning- Knees, Ankles, Armpits, Wrists, Elbows, Toes, Palms of Hands, Fingers...etc.
Don't completely rub into skin, leave a little extra on these areas for full application.
 You can use plastic gloves if you like, but I personally find them to be more of a pain than than a help...

3. Apple Self Tanning Lotion or Gel ONE SECTION of your body AT A TIME. Meaning - one arm to the shoulder, then your shoulders and chest, then the other arm... etc... breaking it down into sections makes sure that you fully blend it in to prevent any streaking.

Below are some of my personal favorite products... I prefer to use gel products that are tinted so that I can see where I am applying the color - that way there's not as much guess work. I also like to use a med-dark tanner... I personally don't find that I get enough color from a "Light", and the "Deep" usually looks good for about 2 days, and then starts to wear off in "splotchy" patches if you don't have enough of a base tan to begin with.

 And if you are REALLY fair, or scared that you will end up looking like a Jersey Shore cast member -
you can use the lotions that are very diluted that you can use over several days to "Build" your tan...

However - I'm usually not patient enough to wait 3 days to get the "desired color" as the instructions suggest.

4. Mix a DIME SIZE amount of lotion with a DIME SIZE amount of tanning gel in the palm of your hand. Blend this over the top of your feet, and in between your toes. Repeat this process on the top of your hands.

5. Next thoroughly WASHING the palms of your hands, and in between your fingers .... (Unlike the photo, I wouldn't fully wash the top of your hands)

 6. Finish by thoroughly drying your hands and wiping in between fingers...

I also like to finish by adding a little more moisturizing lotion to hands and feet just to make sure that all the color is evenly blended. And finally, make sure that you allow enough time (about 10 minutes) to dry before dressing. And I would not suggest that you plan on wearing lighter clothing, most self tanners can stain clothing.

7. Let the tanner develop for anywhere from 3 - 5 hours. Read the instructions on packaging... and it will instruct you of exactly how long the specific tanner will need to stay on your skin. 

And finally, all self tanning products omit an odor. There is pretty much no way around it.
The ingredient dihydroxyacetone [DHA] is in basically all self tanners and is what creates the color on your skin as time elapses. This is also what creates the terrible smell...So I would recommend that you try to do this when you can stay at home for a few hours, or you will be going somewhere where you aren't going to be concerned with how you smell.

And that's it...

Hopefully this will help you to have a beautiful, golden glow!