11 Country Stars and Their Cookbooks

1. Kitty Wells Country Kitchen Cookbook by Kitty Wells (1964)

The Queen of Country Music published three volumes of cookery over thirty years. In addition to down-home delights like 7-Up Poundcake (which contains a full can of the soda), she also offered Tex-Mex and Hawaiian recipes.

2. Cooking With Kenny Rogers by Kenny Rogers (1987)

Rogers was a TV pitchman for Dole Foods (he sang their tagline, "That's the nature of Dole"). That explains this cookbook, in which every recipe depends on some Dole product – from Pineapple Chicken Cheese Melt to Hawaiian Splendor Sponge Cake to a full menu for a five-course Backyard Luau.

3. Mother Maybelle's Cookbook by June Carter Cash (1989)

Scripture Cake, Helen's Drunk Chicken, Mush – the secrets to these colorfully named dishes and more are all presented with love by Johnny Cash's wife, along with anecdotes about the first family of country song.

4. The Tammy Wynette Southern Cookbook by Tammy Wynette (1990)

Wynette grew up on a sharecropper farm with no electricity and learned how to cook over an open hearth. Here she shares flavorful – and fattening – family recipes such as Mississippi Stuffed Bell Pepper, Cornmeal Fried Potatoes, and Pineapple Banana Pudding.

5. Fit for a King: The Elvis Presley Cookbook by Elizabeth McKeon, Ralph Gevirtz, and Julie Bandy (1992)

Graceland's former cook Alvena Ray reveals the recipes that kept the King happy (and overweight). Peanut butter, bacon, and banana sandwiches topped the charts. Also, a glimpse inside Presley's pantry reveals items such as a case of Pepsi, fudge cookies, and a hefty supply of Doublemint and Juicy Fruit gum.

6. Naomi's Home Companion: A Treasury of Favorite Recipes, Food for Thought, and Country Wit and Wisdom by Naomi Judd (1997)

Life as a single mom and touring musician gave Judd a no-nonsense, healthy approach to cooking, which she shares in 75 recipes, ranging from flank steak with spinach to deviled eggs.

7. Hey Good Cookin' by Hank Williams, Jr. (2002)

Ol' Bocephus offers tips on hunting, cleaning, and cooking, with recipes for venison, rabbit, possum, and other wild critters. Hank says, "I won't be responsible for the way yours turn out, but when I fix 'em they're bodacious!" Hank's also got his own line of Bar-B-Que Sauces.

8. You're Cookin' It Country by Loretta Lynn (2004)

The Coal Miner's Daughter offers backwoods-style recipes (Kentucky Frog Legs and Hominy Grits), plenty of desserts (Gooey Cake and Lemon Whippersnappers), and tales of her rustic childhood. When Loretta baked some bread for Jack and Meg from the White Stripes, Jack said, "That's the best bread I've ever eaten in my life."

9. Dolly's Dixie Fixin's: Love, Laughter and Lots of Good Food by Dolly Parton (2006)

"I cook like an old mountain woman," says Parton in her book, which contains 125 recipes for breads, entrees, holiday punch, and butter- and sugar-rich desserts like Hello Dolly Bars. Parton adds her own brand of humor to each recipe. Example: "Hush puppies are to fried fish what pickin' is to grinnin'. You just can't have one without the other."

10. Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen by Trisha Yearwood (2008)

A family affair, Yearwood collaborated with her mom and sister on this book of family recipes with down-home faves like Pimento Cheese Spread and Hashbrown Casserole. She also lets fans in on how to recreate the cake she made for her wedding to Garth Brooks. In 2010, Yearwood published a follow-up book, Home Cooking.

11. ZBB Southern Ground Cook Book by Zac Brown (2010)

"Country Fried," the title of the country jam band leader's first single in 2003, was a tip-off that he takes his food seriously. His cookbook contains poems, stories, and recipes that echo his music – earthy and soulful. Serve up everything from Farmer's Fried Green Tomatoes to Perfect Pocketknife Coleslaw.

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Your Library Has a Free Music Service That You Probably Didn't Know About
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Did you know that you can download free music from your local library? Music that you can keep. That's right: not borrow, keep.

It's all possible thanks to a service called Freegal (a portmanteau of free and legal), which gives patrons of participating libraries access to 15 million songs from 40,000 labels, notably including the Sony Music Entertainment catalog. All you need is a library card.

Here's how it works: You can download a few songs a week, and, in many areas, enjoy several hours of streaming, too (the precise number of songs and hours of streaming varies by library). Once you download MP3 files, they're yours. You're free to put them on iTunes, your iPhone, your tablet, and more. You don't have to return them and they don't expire. The counter resets on Mondays at 12:01 a.m. Central Time, so if you hit your limit, you won't have long to wait before you get more downloads. And Freegal has some great stuff: A quick scan of the front page reveals music from Beyoncé, Michael Jackson, Cardi B, Simon & Garfunkel, Childish Gambino, The Avett Brothers, Lykke Li, and Sara Bareilles.

Freegal has been around since 2010 and is offered at libraries worldwide. In the U.S., that includes the New York Public Library, Queens Library, Los Angeles Public Library, West Chicago Public Library, Houston Public Library, and more. In the past few years, libraries have debuted some other amazing free digital services, from classic films streaming on Kanopy to audiobooks and e-books available to borrow on SimplyE and OverDrive. But the thing that's so exciting about Freegal is that you can keep the MP3 files, unlike services that limit you to borrowing.

Freegal's site is easy to navigate: You can browse playlists and make your own, check out the most popular tunes, and save songs to your wishlist for when you get more credits. In the old days, music fans would check out CDs from the library and upload them onto their computers before returning them. But Freegal eliminates the need to go to your local branch, check out an album, and bring it back when you're done.

Freegal app
Freegal

To find out if your local library has Freegal, go to freegalmusic.com and click login, then search for your area. It's important to note: Your library's contract might not have both streaming and downloading privileges. You can use Freegal on the web or as an app available on the App Store, Google Play, and Amazon. Of course, the service doesn't have everything. And sometimes, when it does have an artist, it will only have a few of their most popular albums. But if you frequently buy music on iTunes or elsewhere, checking Freegal first may save you a bit of money.

If you don't yet have a library card, Freegal is just one more reason why you should get one ASAP.

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An Anthology Series Based on Dolly Parton's Songs Is Coming to Netflix
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Rick Diamond, Getty Images

Though she may be best known for her music career, Dolly Parton is a Hollywood powerhouse. In addition to starring in more than a few contemporary classics, from 9 to 5 to Steel Magnolias, she's also been partly responsible for some of your favorite TV series. As part owner of Sandollar Entertainment, a film and television production company, she's been a silent figure behind shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Now, the queen of country music is preparing to return to the small screen once again—this time on Netflix.

The beloved singer is partnering with Warner Bros. Television to produce an anthology series for Netflix, Engadget reports. Set to debut in 2019, each of the eight episodes will have a theme based on a song by Parton, who will serve as executive producer and singer-songwriter in addition to appearing in the series.

"As a songwriter, I have always enjoyed telling stories through my music," Parton said in a statement. "I am thrilled to be bringing some of my favorite songs to life with Netflix. We hope our show will inspire and entertain families and folks of all generations, and I want to thank the good folks at Netflix and Warner Bros. TV for their incredible support."

The list of songs hasn’t yet been released, but I Will Always Love You, Jolene, and The Bargain Store are among Parton’s greatest hits.

Parton previously worked with Warner Bros. to produce the made-for-television movies Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors (2015) and Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love (2016). She has also nearly finished the music for the upcoming film Dumplin'—based on a novel by Julie Murphy and starring Jennifer Aniston—and the soundtrack will be released via Dolly Records and Sony Music Nashville, according to Parton’s website.

[h/t Engadget]

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