Cyrus, Warwick To Perform New Single Today On CBS’ The Talk

billyraycyrus_hopeisjustahead_cover_smallCountry musician Billy Ray Cyrus will appear today on CBS’ The Talk.

Cyrus will perform his new single, ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ on the networks’ afternoon talk show.  Audiences can catch The Talk live on their local CBS station.  Viewers can check their local listings for broadcast times online at http://www.cbs.com/shows/the_talk.  He is expected to be joined by fellow veteran singer Dionne Warwick, with whom he also recorded the song.  The song has jumped to #60 and is most added on the A/C Chart in just its second week at radio.  The video for the new single can be viewed online now at http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/music/2014/01/30/billy-ray-cyrus-dionne-warwick-premiere-new-duet/5044913/?AID=10709313&PID=6154686&SID=2f4szw8nt2dh and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jyQfyMIH5Uk.

Cyrus explained in a recent interview how the meaning behind his new single has changed since it was originally written.  He explained that  was inspired by a school shooting, and that it has now done what it was meant to do.  “I initially started writing ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ the day after the Columbine shootings with Don Von Tress,” he noted.  “I feel like ‘Hope Is Just Ahead’ has now found its purpose.  Cyrus will donate a portion of sales of the single to the “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign to Stop Violence.”  The group was developed to create awareness and stop violence among young people in schools before it has a chance to develop.

Cyrus discussed the “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign To Stop Violence” in his comments.  ‘Do The Write Thing is one of the few ideas I have seen in front of us as a society in America that can actually make an immediate and positive impact, a real difference in stopping violence in schools before it happens,” he said.  “If this concept can save one life, if the thought of early detection means one less Sandy Hook, VA Tech or movie theater massacre, then it needs our support.  He went on to add that “Edmund Burke said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing,’ so let’s no longer just stand back and say ‘I saw this coming, but did nothing.We have to try something, standing here debating and procrastinating, just ain’t working.”  More information on “Do The Write Thing-National Campaign To Stop Violence” is available online at http://www.dtwt.org/about-dtwt.

More information on Billy Ray Cyrus is available online at http://www.billyraycyrus.com and http://www.facebook.com/BillyRayCyrus.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

The Christmas Pageant A Heartwarming Holiday Movie For The Whole Family

 

Courtesy:  Gaiam Vicendi Entertainment/Sonar Entertainment/Hallmark Channel

Courtesy: Gaiam Vicendi Entertainment/Sonar Entertainment/Hallmark Channel

Hallmark Channel’s recently released holiday film, The Christmas Pageant is an interesting piece for the holidays.  That’s because while its primary story is one of the holiday season, there’s actually a secondary storyline that is fitting not just during the holiday season, but throughout the year.  Given it’s a plotline that is nothing new to the movie industry.  But it’s still nice to get the occasional reminder that is this story’s secondary plot.  And mixed in with the movie’s primary plot, it makes for a heartwarming helping of a holiday movie for the whole family.

The story of The Christmas Pageant centers on the young, ambitious producer, Vera Parks (Melissa Gilbert—Little House on the Prairie).  Vera is an overachieving producer who is so caught up in what she does that it has caused some problems in her life in the recent year.  She has just lost her third job in one year, and is also divorced.  Despite having struck out three times, her manager (played by singer Steve Lawrence) manages to get her a gig at a small town Christmas pageant.  What she isn’t told is that she lands the job thanks in large part to her ex-fiancé Jack (Robert Mailhouse).  This leads to what will eventually be the secondary storyline of The Christmas Pageant as the job not only forces Vera to face her past life, but also to have to choose between the fast paced life to which she has become accustomed and the small town life into which she has been thrust.  Sound familiar?  Thought so.  But that can be forgiven, considering the story’s heartwarming nature, especially in the country’s current emotional climate.

During her time in the small town where she is producing the Christmas pageant, the secondary plot of whether Vera needs the small town or vice versa comes into play.  This is really a reminder to viewers, as it serves as another mirror to today’s world.  It’s especially evident when Vera is suddenly offered the chance to get back to her fast paced New York life when her manager gets her the chance to take on a famous actor in a major Broadway production.  The end result of this turn of events (which won’t be revealed here) tends to be even more of an indirect commentary on the line in the sand between small town life and the increasingly fast paced life which so many people live.  It is that choice that Vera is forced to make that helps make The Christmas Pageant a heartwarming and relatable story for viewers.  It is so relatable in that just as Vera allowed herself to inevitably get far too caught up in her busy lifestyle, so do we in our everyday lives.  It’s because of that that we need our own awakening to make us slow down and change things so as to better appreciate those around us and what we have.  In the same vein, The Christmas Pageant is an excellent excuse and means to take a break from our busy lives and just spend some quality time with family taking in a movie that has enough heart to make it a must see for the holidays.

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