Travis Tritt clarifies remarks about Beyoncé’s CMA performance

Earlier this month Beyoncé performed “Daddy Lessons” on stage at the 50th Annual Country Music Association Awards with the Dixie Chicks. The performance was lauded by many cultural critics, hated by many country music fans and left many scratching their heads.

Multi-platinum country singer, songwriter, performer and musician Travis Tritt in 2004. (PRNewsFoto)

One of those left scratching their heads was country artist Travis Tritt, who took to Twitter the day after the awards ceremony to express his views.

After that tweet, he claimed in a reply that “Nobody in [country music] has done more to bridge racial gaps than me.”

After the late-night tweetstorm, he woke up to several people on the social media site labeling him a racist.

In an interview with Nash Country Daily, published last Thursday, Tritt doubled down on his opinions and clarified that his aversion to Beyoncé’s performance had nothing to do with race.

Read more: The good, the bad and the ugly of the CMAs

It wasn’t so much about just Beyoncé,” he said. “This is a complaint that I’ve heard for a long time, actually for decades. Back in the ’90s, it was Elton John or Sting or whoever. Every year the CMA television producers feel a need to bring in acts from other genres, and it’s always done to boost ratings. I understand the concept behind that but at the same time I’ve always found it a little bit insulting— from the standpoint of being a country music artist—because this is a format that I’ve been a part of since the very beginning in my career. It’s a format that I have seen grow a tremendous amount in the 27 years that I’ve been doing this.”

He went on to say that other member of the “Class of ’89” were able to sell records and sell out concert arenas without help from outside sources, which is what he feels the Beyoncé addition to the CMA lineup was.

“As part of the Class of ’89—Garth Brooks, Alan Jackson, Clint Black and myself—we saw country music album sales increase by millions over what they had ever been before. We saw an ability by all country music artists to put more fannies in concert seats than we’d ever seen before. We sold a ton of product, drew in millions and millions of fans that had never listened to country music before. I think during that period of time we’ve certainly become strong enough to stand on our own two feet without the help from outside sources. I’ve been complaining about this for years, and it’s funny to me that it took complaining about this year’s performance, before anybody paid any attention to it.”

“It’s very strange to me. I’ve had open discussions about this on social media for the last 10 days and the fact is that while there are a lot of people that try to twist this into being something different than what it is—being motivated by something different than what it’s motivated by—the fact is that this is something that I’ve been very vocal about for a long time. Race has nothing to do with it. That’s what I’ve tried to make clear from the very beginning. We should be better than that. To make everything about race—to me—it makes me sad to be honest.”

He goes on to say that his tweets were taken out of context by people who picked the story up from Twitter, and that he simply thought it made no sense to have a pop artist on a country show, no matter who it was.

“First of all, they said that I trashed Beyoncé, which I never did. I never made a statement saying anything bad about her personally. All I said was that her performance—in my humble opinion—her performance as well as any of the other performances that have been on from the pop world, including Ariana Grande, Meghan Trainor, Justin Timberlake or whoever, do not belong. I don’t think they belong on any country music show. Especially on a country music show that was a 50-year celebration—an anniversary of what was supposed to be the entire 50-year history of country music awards—the CMA Awards show. The other thing that frustrated me was the fact, and it has frustrated me for years, is the fact that for every pop performance or R&B performance or any other type of genre performance that you have on the CMA Awards, that takes time away from somebody who is a country music artist, doing country music songs, releasing country music singles to radio, selling country music under that moniker to people all across the country and across the world. That’s taking time away from them. There are other artists that could have been just as much of a draw and that really should have been involved in that slot to celebrate the music that they have helped to create.

“So many great country music artists that you can name that weren’t part of it because there is only so much time—I get that, I understand that and everybody else does too. But when you take a portion of that precious time and give it to an artist outside of our industry, it makes no sense. It makes about as much sense to me as it would make sense to bring Eminem in on the Dove Awards. But you wouldn’t do that because it doesn’t fit the format. That’s my humble opinion.”

Tritt’s new album, “A Man and His Guitar,” is an acoustic live album, and it’s on sale now.

Midland Little Woodrow’s reviews tattoo policy in wake of social media stir

3:17 p.m. UPDATE, Nov. 30:

The Midland Little Woodrow’s will allow face and visible neck tattoos after all.

Penn & Tell Us, the marketing agency that works with Little Woodrow’s, issued the following statement Wednesday:

“Little Woodrow’s does not have an issue with tattoos as evidenced by the fact that we had no restrictions on tattoos of any kind except at two of our sixteen locations. At those locations, we implemented a policy where we requested that neck and/or facial tattoos not be openly displayed. After further review, we have rescinded this policy. We continue to focus on providing a safe and comfortable environment for all our guests. The company regularly reviews and modifies its policies when it is deemed reasonable to do so.”



A Midland restaurant is drawing heat on social media for its tattoo policy after a patron said he was denied service because of a face tattoo.

Joeseff Rivera outside the Midland Little Woodrow's Nov. 8.
Joeseff Rivera outside the Midland Little Woodrow’s Nov. 8.

The Little Woodrow’s in Midland, which just opened Nov. 6, has a “No shoes, no shirt, no service” policy like every other restaurant, but a sign on the door of the bar and restaurant also states: “Dress code enforced.”

That dress code, one man found out, extends to visible tattoos on the neck and tattoos on the face, as reported by Odessa’s CBS 7.

In a Facebook video posted Nov. 8, Midland Little Woodrow’s would-be patron Joeseff Rivera filmed himself in front of the restaurant, taking issue with the bouncer’s tattoos as well, implying a double standard.

“I just came to Little Woodrow’s, and they wouldn’t let me in to spend my money because I have a tattoo on my face,” Rivera says in the video as he points to a small tattoo below his left eye. “Yet, the man working the door has tattoos on his arms, but they won’t let me in.”


The description in the video reads, in part: “I’m a Level 2 Security Officer,just wanting to spend money and have a Good time with my sister.”

Many angry opponents of the tattoo policy took to the Little Woodrow’s Midland Facebook page to write bad reviews of the bar.

“I dont feel its right to be judged over a tattoo at this place my cusion and i went to this place sat night and we were dressed nice not even thugged out and just bc u could see a bit of my cousins tattoo on his neck we were told we couldnt go in bc of that so i was just wondering are yall racial profiling bc from what i see yall have a bartender that is all tatted up yall act like yall are a formal f—ing restaruant its a f—ing bar,” one review reads.

Another reviewer, a member of a motorcycle group, wrote that the store’s tattoo policy would deter him and his motorcycle group from eating there.

“Our gain their loss… Good Luck…It looks like it is a Love it or Hate it Place…” he wrote.

The restaurant currently has a 2.9/5 star rating from Facebook reviews. A recent photo on the page posted Nov. 15 features the store’s regional manager preparing for an interview with CBS 7. In the photo, his tattoo sleeve is visible, which again made commenters angry.

In a statement provided to CBS 7 by Philip Brinson, Little Woodrow’s attorney, it was emphasized the dress code policy was not meant to turn people away.

“We don’t like to refuse service to anyone but if somebody comes in and is not dressed appropriately we will ask them to either change it up a little bit or in this case with tattoos cover it up,” Brinson said. “We do not prohibit anyone from having tattoos and entering the establishment. We prefer that there be no face or neck tattoos.”

Little Woodrow’s has locations across Texas, including Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Midland and three locations in Austin. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, all locations have the same policy banning face and visible neck tattoos.


Signs of gratitude: We asked people at Zilker Park what they’re #thankful for

Thanksgiving is a perfect time of year to reflect and to celebrate what is special to us. With the holiday on the horizon, we went out to Zilker Park and asked people what they were thankful for.



Emory, Adam and their dog Kensho were at the park visiting new friends and having a doggie play date. For Thanksgiving, they plan to visit both sides of the family and, of course, enjoy lots of delicious food.



Stephany Pereira, right, from Colombia said she will be spending the holiday with her host family in Austin. This will be her first Thanksgiving in America.



Carson and her three younger sisters, Blair, Avery and Tabitha, spent the day kicking the ball around and laughing together. For Thanksgiving they plan to go to Amarillo to spend time with their grandparents.



Katie and Chris were practicing their handstands at the park. For Thanksgiving, they are going to Katie’s Mimi’s house to enjoy her traditional cooking.




Skylar Smith and Dmytro Ivanyna came out to watch the sunset. Ivanyna, who is from Ukraine, has been in Austin for two years. This will be his second Thanksgiving in America but his first celebrating with Smith and their friends and family.




Peter spent the day playing with his two pups. Peter plans to spend the holiday taking some time to himself and relaxing at home.



Ryan Tyrell and Melanie Weinberger brought their dog Mary out to Zilker. An injured leg couldn’t keep Tyrell inside on this beautiful day. For Thanksgiving, Weinberger says she plans to volunteer with Travis County Victim Services. She said the best way to give thanks is to give back.



Katie Fingerhut gave thanks to her three cats, Todd, Kimba and Charlie. She said she will be going back home to Arkansas for Thanksgiving to visit family.



For the holiday, Edwin De Angel has planned a special family getaway at La Cantera Resort and Spa in San Antonio. After having a baby (not pictured) less than three months ago, the family is ready for a vacation.

The Internet is reacting to the election with Joe Biden memes

As the Internet is wont to do, it isn’t too long until a big cultural event is turned into a meme.

As for this year’s election results, one Titter user has turned his frustration about Donald Trump’s win into an opportunity to communicate his frustration through Joe Biden memes.


The memes, which you may have seen pop up on your Facebook and Twitter timelines this week, involve President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. They often portray Biden plotting some sort of prank for president-elect Donald Trump, while Obama jumps in as the voice of reason and rebukes him.

As of three days ago, the posts now have their own community on Reddit: r/bidenbro.

Many of them appear to be the work of one man, Josh Billinson, who started tweeting the memes Nov. 10. The first one is an homage to “Step Brothers,” the 2008 Will Ferrell comedy.

Since that tweet, Billinson has created several Biden-related memes, an activity that he said was a great honor for him.

Biden, who decided to not run for president in 2016 after the 2015 death of his son Beau Biden, has often been the subject of Internet fandom. His hot mic moment where he called the Affordable Care Act “a big f—ing deal” and a recent interview where he said he was “not a big fan” of former congressman Anthony Weiner are just two such moments.


Li’l Sebastian from ‘Parks and Recreation’ would be proud of this Conroe miniature horse

This is at least 1,000 times better than “5,000 Candles in the Wind.”

On Tuesday afternoon, while the rest of the country was held rapt by the election, a miniature horse not unlike “Parks and Recreation”‘s Li’l Sebastian was on the loose in downtown Conroe.

The Houston Chronicle reported that at least four Conroe police officers helped capture the tiny white steed around 3 p.m. yesterday near some train tracks.

The horse eventually made its way into a pen near Clayton Lee Plumbing, where some employees assumed a suspect was on the loose after seeing the police officers running after the miniature beast.


Later, officers on scene said the Precinct 5 Constable’s Office took the horse into custody with its livestock unit.

You can see the video here, which shows the horse in all its renegade glory.

Just call it Li’l Conroe.

Stuck in line on Election Day? This site wants to send you a pizza

You can’t vote for pizza today. But you can eat it while voting.

A classic mushroom and pepperoni New York City style pizza from Home Slice Pizza. 02/04/15 Tom McCarthy Jr. for AMERICAN-STATESMAN
A classic mushroom and pepperoni New York City style pizza from Home Slice Pizza. 02/04/15 Tom McCarthy Jr. for AMERICAN-STATESMAN

In case you haven’t heard, this election has brought out voters in droves. Many states, including Texas, have surpassed their previous early voter turnout records, and with Election Day already off to a roaring start, overall numbers are expected to be up as well, the Washington Post reports.

One side effect to all this participation? Long (long) lines. Even with the help of maps that estimate waits at different polling locations, chances are you might have to put in a little time before casting your vote.

PHOTOS: What Election Day in Central Texas is looking like…

However, thanks to Pizza to the Polls you’ll have one more thing to do while waiting that isn’t checking your phone and picking your split ends: Eat pizza! According to the site, Pizza to the Polls wants to “deliver the one thing that pairs so perfectly with freedom” to polling locations that have long lines “full of hungry voters.”

As of noon today, the site, which allows visitors to both report long voting lines and donate to the growing pizza fund, was reporting nearly $20,000 in total donations, and an available $12,500 after the delivery of more than 300 pizzas. The site also lists the cities to which deliveries have been made thus far.

Who says fulfilling your civic duty can’t be as cheesy as it is American? Tweet Pizza to the Polls a picture of your polling location’s line and treat you and your fellow voters to comforting pizza.

ModCloth is opening its first brick-and-mortar, and it’s in Austin

Purveyor of snazzy outfits ModCloth has come to Austin before on its Modcloth IRL tour, but instead of a pop-up shop, we’re getting the brand’s first permanent storefront.

Photo via ModCloth
Photo via ModCloth

The new store opens Nov. 12 on Second Street, according to CultureMap Austin.

“Austin’s style is quirky and a bit retro, but still of-the-moment and centered on creating new trends … it’s very congruent with our styling POV,” CultureMap quotes ModCloth CEO Matt Kaness as saying in a press release. “It’s no surprise that Austin is one of our top online markets and that the local ModCloth community there made our earlier pop-up a huge success, voting resoundingly ‘Yes!’ for us to come back.”

The vintage-inspired women’s clothing brand has come through Austin before, but only temporarily. The pop-up shop in Austin stayed on Second Street from April 8 to May 30, and was ModCloth’s first stop. Apparently ModCloth loved us so much it wants to stay forever. The new store will feature their signature styles as well as their bridal line. Customers can also book an appointment with a ModStylist to help them choose the right fit.

Beyoncé performed with the Dixie Chicks at the CMAs, gave shoutout to Texas


Beyonce (2nd R) performs onstage with Emily Robison, Natalie Maines, and Martie Maguire of Dixie Chicks at the 50th annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 2, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

Beyoncé’s Texas roots showed up in full force at the Country Music Awards last night.

Beyoncé took over the CMA stage with the Dixie Chicks to sing “Daddy Lessons” — a country-tinged song from Bey’s latest album “Lemonade” — which any self-respecting Beyhiver could have predicted. As soon as Bey’s appearance was confirmed, there could only be one song. The Dixie Chicks have also covered the song on their tour, so the collaboration was hardly a surprise.

Bey and the Dixie Chicks all lay claim to the Lone Star State, so the beginning of their performance felt even more appropriate as each woman declared “Texas” into their respective microphones, the first words of “Daddy Lessons.” Backed by brass and violins, the blend of Beyonce’s powerful vocals and the Dixie Chicks’ enthusiastic twang came together to make a beautiful performance, worthy of a 50th anniversary awards show.

The team also wove in a 40-second bit of the Chicks’ 2002 Grammy-winning hit “Long Time Gone,” a possible nod to their absence from country music in the past years. Beyond the quick homage to past glory days, the Dixie Chicks kept their set light and without commentary on their status in the country music scene.

Beyoncé fans who ordinarily wouldn’t have watched the CMAs did so for Queen B:

Others saw Bey’s appearance as unnecessary:

The Dixie Chicks offered a studio version of their collaboration with Beyoncé on Soundcloud to stream and to download for free.

While the possibility of this collaboration probably wasn’t on too many people’s radars before, it undoubtedly stole the show at the CMAs.


Adele spent Halloween in Texas dressed as Jim Carrey from ‘The Mask’

Move over, Heidi Klum. Adele is the new queen of Halloween.

FILE - This Feb. 24, 2016 file photo shows Adele onstage at the Brit Awards 2016 at the 02 Arena in London. Adele opened up to Vanity Fair about parenting and her struggle with postpartum depression in an issue for the magazine's December 2016 issue. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP, File)
FILE – This Feb. 24, 2016 file photo shows Adele onstage at the Brit Awards 2016 at the 02 Arena in London. Adele opened up to Vanity Fair about parenting and her struggle with postpartum depression in an issue for the magazine’s December 2016 issue. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP, File)

The British soul phenom, who comes to Austin this weekend for a two-night Frank Erwin Center engagement, has been lighting up Dallas for a similar series of gigs just up the highway. According to Guide Live, Adele arrived in the Big D a little early and spent Halloween in Highland Park. Would you like to guess what she dressed up as? I don’t care what your guess is. It’s wrong.

READ MORE: Adele gives Austin one more thing to cry about

Adele went out into the spooky night as The Mask. Yes, the Jim Carrey character.

View this post on Instagram

Halloween 2016 / Dallas, TX

A post shared by Adele (@adele) on

The “Hello” hitmaker camouflaged herself in a full character illusion: trench coat, hat and facial prosthetics, according to pictures posted to her Instagram.

View this post on Instagram

Halloween 2016 / Dallas, TX

A post shared by Adele (@adele) on

Unfortunately, the photos are in black and white, so it’s impossible to really see that neon green pop. But I’d like to point out that Adele’s makeup bears a slight resemblance to “RuPaul’s Drag Race” winner Sharon Needles.

But what’s this? Jim Carrey himself responded to the homage on Twitter? It’s true! And also offensively rooted in stereotypes about British dental hygiene!

Not that you shouldn’t have already been excited for Adele’s Austin shows this weekend, but this might take your interest from piqued to positively smokin’. Remember: No matter what happens, it can’t go worse than her 2007 South by Southwest debut.

David Bowie emoji included in iOS update

David Bowie has long been an icon, but now he’s an emoji.

FILE - This is a June 19, 1987 file photo of David Bowie. Bowie, the other-worldly musician who broke pop and rock boundaries with his creative musicianship, nonconformity, striking visuals and a genre-bending persona he christened Ziggy Stardust, died of cancer Sunday Jan. 10, 2016. He was 69 and had just released a new album. (PA, File via AP) UNITED KINGDOM OUT NO SALES NO ARCHIVE
This is a June 19, 1987 file photo of David Bowie. Bowie, the other-worldly musician who broke pop and rock boundaries with his creative musicianship, nonconformity, striking visuals and a genre-bending persona he christened Ziggy Stardust, died of cancer Sunday Jan. 10, 2016. He was 69 and had just released a new album. (PA, File via AP)

As Stereogum reports, iPhone users will soon have the perfect emoji to express that thing when you’re feeling dance-y and weird and fantastic. A David Bowie-inspired emoji, complete with “Aladdin Sane” lightning bolt face paint, will be one of several new emojis to make a debut with the iOS 10.2 upgrade.

READ: Apple adds new professions, avocado emoji in iOS update

The update is now available in beta, so you can test out the strange before facing it. Other new emojis include a face-palm, a shrug and several with a career theme, like a firefighter, chef and astronaut.

While the tribute is sure to please Bowie fans, we prefer to remember the rock star by illegally ch-ch-changing out street signs.