AJC Has Some Nice Things to Say about Brand New Day

Robin Meade Brand New Day Debuts at #25 on iTunesAtlanta-based Robin Meade is best known as that HLN morning anchor with the chipper greeting, “Mornin’ Sunshine.”

But she’s also a country singer who released her first album last month called “Brand New Day,” available on iTunes and Target. Reviews have been kind. “Meade rises to the challenge and meets it dead on,” wrote Chuck Dauphin of Music News Nashville.

The album shows that she can actually sing with sass with songs such as “Put My High Heels On.” “Five inch heels are transformative!” she said in an interview today. Her trademark phrase “Mornin’ Sunshine” also became a song.

A couple of years ago, she was hosting a reality competition show on GAC (Great American Country) when she met judge Victoria Shaw, who produced Lady Antebellum’s first album. Meade asked Shaw if she could teach Meade how to write music. Shaw, she said, figured this was just a notion, not a real project. But Meade kept driving up to Nashville and working with her.

“She said I stalked her,” Meade said. “I call it reporter’s persistence. She got sucked in. I fell into a vat of luck.”

So people in the music business would take her seriously, she surrounded herself with pros. John Rich, a well-respected Nashville songwriter and producer who recently won “The Celebrity Apprentice,” co-wrote one song and dueted on another. “American Idol” runner-up Bo Bice joined her on a remake of Richard Marx’s ‘Right Here Waiting.”

She purposely included two cover songs on the album to draw casual Target shoppers, especially those who might be perusing the aisles of Target. Besides the Marx cover, she did a tongue-in-cheek bluegrass take on Don Henley’s “Dirty Laundry,” a biting critique of the TV news business from 1982. She made one small lyrical change, singing, “I make my living off the morning news,” rather than “evening news.”

Meade, a preacher’s kid from Ohio, said she always loved that song going back to eighth grade. HLN honchos, she said, didn’t blink an eye: “My bosses are hip enough and secure enough to realize this is irony and a wink and a nudge. I’m not biting the hand that feeds me.”

That hand pays the bills. Her HLN obligations preclude her from becoming a full-time country artist touring 150 days a year. But she does a few one-off concerts, most recently sharing the stage July 1 in Warner Robins with Wynonna. She also owns the masters to her album, having paid for the production out of her own pocket.

Meade may not have a record label to push sales but she has HLN as a promotional vehicle. The network created a contest asking viewers to write a theme song for the show, enabling Meade to namedrop her album without being obnoxious about it.

The distribution company Somerset Entertainment said the album has done well at Target. It also peaked at No. 25 on iTunes.

Meade insists this is not just a hobby. “It’s more than a hobby,” she said. “We already have plans for a second album. This is not a one off.”

NFL Lockout Could End Today

Hey team! Hope you got some rest over the weekend. All who can’t get to sleep on sunday nights raise your hand.
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In the news:
Hear some parts of a manifesto which may be from the suspect in norway’s terror attacks.
He’s accused of killing at least 93 people in Friday’s bombing and shooting spree.
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NFL Talks- Could today be the day the NFL lockout ends? The players could vote today to end it.
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What a sad loss of such a superb vocalist:
The autopsy on Amy Winehouse may be done today.
See what friends and fans are saying about her final days, drug problems, and her performances.

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Such a sad club in which to have membership: see what other legends of music never made it past their 27th year.
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Warren Jeffs – today the trial of the polygamous sect leader begins.
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Going Offline-
How difficult would it be for you to not go online?
About as difficult as giving up tobacco for some!
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Stocks could be ugly today because of no debt deal Dow could open with triple-digit losses this morning.
Dow futures were down 116 points at 3:30am eastern.
Tune in for more on that.
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I’m chomping at the bit to share my debut album with you. Brand new day is available exclusively at target stores near the gift wrap and greeting cards, or itunes.
Let your own star rise and shine by writing and performing a theme song for this show. Send it in via ireport. You could win a professional recording session, round trip to atlanta and more!
Read the official rules at cnn.com/robin

>Loosing it at prompter operator. j/k

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The HLN Morning Express team had some fun with the new guy…
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Carlos Diaz has joined HLN’s Morning Express with Robin Meade team as Sports Anchor it was announced today live on Morning Express. Beginning today, Diaz anchors Morning Express (M-F, 6 a.m.–12 noon ET) sports segments, and will also contribute and serve as guest host on multiple shows across HLN.
Diaz (@carlosHLN) joins the Morning Express ensemble (@morn_eXpress) hosted by Robin Meade (@RobinMeade) with correspondent Ryan Smith (@RyanSmithTV), personal finance anchor Jennifer Westhoven and meteorologist Bob Van Dillen.

>Where’s Robin Meade? I’ll be back in my chair before you know it

>Robin is off today. Natasha Curry is filling in.

Big development this morning about the raid that led to Osama bin Laden’s death:

What the U.S. military took when it left – and what they hope to learn from it.

Plus, new details about what happened at the compound during the raid.

And the link between Guantanamo Bay detainees… and the big break that put this mission into play.

Also, we’ll show you the incredible outpouring from around the country in support of the troops.

In other news…
Record flooding is happening or could happen in a large area of the mid-Mississippi River and Ohio River Valleys. Wait ’til you see the overnight video of officials blowing up a levee to try to save a town from the high waters.

Gas prices are up for the 42nd straight day.

A recall of grape tomatoes in 13-states–we have the info at cnn.com/robin under “express links.”

>Bin Laden is Dead Long Live the USA

>Good morning…

Breaking news: Osama bin Laden is dead… and already buried.

He was killed by U.S. forces in Pakistan.

He was not hiding in a cave as many had suspected. U.S. forces stormed a mansion and shot him.

We are covering all the angles:

How do we know it’s him?

What it means to you? There’s global travel warning for Americans.

We want your reaction to the news – Facebook, tweet us, or email us. Get the links to all at cnn.com/Robin

Our iReporters have been busy sending in pictures and video too – we’ll show them to you.

We’ll also look at how the whole operation went down.

Watch the reaction to the news of his death at a major league baseball game, and the spontaneous gatherings at the White House, Times Square and Ground Zero.

>The Kiss – it was double smooch

>Did Wills give Kate the “alfalfa” kiss?


Have you seen the dress yet?

Then you had better jump right up and turn to our show. Because honey we will be doing the royal wedding, but Morning Express style. (Meaning we understand it’s the big story today, but it’s not the only story impacting you. We’ll quickly visit those too during the wedding and afterward.)
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In terms of the wedding.
Brand new this morning: We now know what title the queen has chosen for the royal couple. And it’s not princess of this or that for Kate!
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We are joined today by the British member of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills: Lisa Vanderpump! (Wonder if she is bringing her doggie?) She not only has a great insight on British pomp and pageantry, but also the royals.
In fact, well ask her what Fergie said about not being invited when the 2 of them had lunch recently.
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Have you checked out the crowds… and the HATS on the ladies in the church? Bring on the fascinators as they are called!
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You will see THE KISS on our air when it happens live.
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Also….tell us and show us your wedding viewing party if you are having or attending one. Or email/tweet/facebook your thoughts as you are watching.
cnn.com/robin or tweet me @robinmeade on twitter.
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Uh-oh! You should see some of the photos and best and worst moments your fellow viewers sent in about their own nuptials. That too is something you’ll only see here.
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So… while we show the wedding continuously, we will also stay on top of important news of the day, like the devastating storms that swept through this country this week.
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Come watch the wedding and news with your BFFs.
6am til noon eastern.

>Storms kill hundreds in AL

>Of all the years I’ve been in news, I don’t know that I’ve seen tornado video like you’re going to see today.
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Morning. Hope you are well.

Terrifying storms have killed more than 100 people in the last 24 hours.
It’s unbelievable.
The video of the killer storm as it twisted through Alabama will cause you to stare with your mouth open.
I don’t think that’s an overstatement.
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Here’s a concerning point:
Yesterday’s storms are now TODAY’S storms.
Bob will track them this morning as they roll through the East now.

Some of your fellow viewers, while facing devastating loss, put their cameras to work as the storm hit and after it passed. We’ll share as friends would do.
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One day until the royal wedding.
We will take you live to London, for what we’ve learned Kate WON’T SAY during the ceremony.
Tomorrow we’ll be running your tweets, emails (morningexpress@cnn.com) and Facebook posts at the bottom of the screen all morning… tell us what you are looking forward to, send encouragement to William and Kate, rate the dress… then look for your comments on the air!
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Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords is in Florida waiting for the shuttle commanded by her husband to lift-off tomorrow.
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An 18-month-old youtube sensation has a new title–soccer star!!
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Words of wisdom from… Blago? Wait ‘til you hear what he’s saying about Oprah and his trial.
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Wait, before you name your baby:
Check out the most CEO-like names.
You may want to go short for the male names. And formal for the gals.

>My best selling book is out in paperback

>If you didn’t get my New York Times bestseller when it was first out, now comes the paperback! 
Preorder it now here: http://amzn.to/ecaII5 to claim your copy before it hits store shelves! (please?)

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A BAD WEATHER DAY is expected for many of your fellow viewers.
We expect tornado warnings and watches DURING the show this morning in high risk areas.
As I write, the advisories are currently in MS, AL, TN, KY.
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PlayStation alert.
Sony says hackers may now have your personal info if you are one of the 70 million subscribers on its PlayStation network.
Yikes.
Tune in to see what you can do now to protect yourself.
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Lindsay Lohan, on The Tonight Show, says she’s taking responsibility for what she’s done.
I kinda like what some would say are her high goals for the future.
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The royal wedding rehearsal—we’ve got a sneak peek.
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HEY WAIT A MINUTE!
Despite new rules, banks are still making a ton of money off you in fees.
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We now know who will be the NEW VOICE of the Aflac duck.
You will meet the man and hear his quack.
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>Behind the scenes with Sanjay Gupta and me: I explain my backside

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At your doc’s office you may have seen CNN Chief Medical correspondent Sanjay Gupta & I doing segments together on the “Accent Health” channel. Well, if smiles are medicine, you should see what a pill it can be behind the scenes! See what happens in between takes here.


Dr. Gupta explores why I’m taller sitting down than when I am standing up. 


I sure do giggle a lot don’t I? I seem to have had the giggles when this was shot.


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>Deadly Storms in Arkansas

>Howdy!
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On our show today:
Here we go again.
Spring storms turn deadly.
And right now they are chuggin’ through KY, TN, MS, and LA, according to Bob.
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One town in Missouri is fearing its levee will break… so it’s chasing everyone out of town.
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New this morning:
Plug-in cars are getting a jolt of approval. Check out their safety test results.
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Here’s an idea – controlled napping – for air traffic controllers.
For real?
That’s after ANOTHER air traffic controller is fired for sleeping on the job.
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The NFL might be one step closer to playing football.
See what a judge’s ruling means for your fave football team.
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Want to share something with just a few of your Facebook friends – there’s a new button on Facebook for that.
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You may be surprised at the biggest concern for royal wedding security.
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You’ll be shelling out more at the grocery store.
Which items will cost you more? (think paper and plastic products)
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