(CMT Hot Dish is a weekly feature written by veteran columnist Hazel Smith. Author of the cookbook, Hazel's Hot Dish: Cookin' With Country Stars, she also hosts CMT's Southern Fried Flicks With Hazel Smith and shares her recipes at CMT.com.)
When my producer told me Tribble Reese, star of the new season of CMT's Sweet Home Alabama, was my next guest on CMT's Southern Fried Flicks, I'll admit I was a tad confused. With a name like Tribble, I assumed he was a she, so I started mentally planning a menu I thought a nice Alabama girl would enjoy.
When the 6-foot-3-inch Tribble arrived at the kitchen, right away I thought, "There ain't nothing feminine about that boy!" So I did the only thing I knew to do and started asking questions.
"Did your name Tribble come from dribble as with a basketball?" I asked.
"Tribble is my middle name," said Reese, who will have 22 girls vying for his attention when the all-new, eight episode season of Sweet Home Alabama premieres Thursday (Oct. 20) at 9 p.m. ET/PT. "My full name is Herbert Tribble Reese. Tribble is my mother's maiden name."
"Like Dierks Bentley," I pointed out. "Dierks is his mama's last name."
As it turns out, Reese did have a basketball experience to share.
"I'll never forget the time when I was playing basketball in high school, going down the court with the ball," he recalled. "And above everyone else, I could hear my dad yelling, 'Dribble, Tribble! Dribble, Tribble! Dribble, Tribble!'"
Best known for his recent role of a country guy in the first season of Sweet Home Alabama, he was runner-up when it came to winning over bachelorette Devin Grissom.
Born in Atlanta, he was raised in Mountain Brook, Ala., near Birmingham, where he played football, basketball and acted in plays in high school. He was a quarterback at Clemson University and earned a degree in marketing. He transferred to Charleston Southern University where he started at quarterback. After college, he spent a short time playing arena football for the Carolina Speed in Charlotte, N.C.
He also hosted a series of local television shows about Carolina nightlife. He aspires to be a full-time on-air personality. An actor, model, entertainer, host and athlete, he currently is a bartender in Atlanta while pursuing his MBA.
Reese was ranked among the Top 50 bachelors in 2008 by Cosmopolitan magazine, which named him South Carolina's most eligible bachelor. With eyes that see clear through you, he's turning heads in Nashville with his photo on the huge billboard at the 21st Avenue/West End split to promote the new season of Sweet Home Alabama. Also on the billboard are the 22 girls primed and ready to chase him down in Fairhope, Ala., for the show's new season.
Keith Urban Does Good Deeds
Four-time Grammy winner and all-the-time good guy Keith Urban will donate a one-of-a-kind Fender guitar to an auction benefiting Susan G. Komen for the Cure in its quest to help those diagnosed with breast cancer. He will play the guitar until the end of October to remind fans it is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
On top of that, he's announced another We're All for the Hall fundraising concert for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville. The Jan. 18 event at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena will also feature top of the line guests, including Vince Gill, Alison Krauss & Union Station, Little Big Town, the Oak Ridge Boys and Rascal Flatts.
Thanks, Keith, for all your good work!
And Dierks Bentley Does Good Deeds, Too
Dierks Bentley has joined forces with country radio and Believe in Heroes, a Wounded Warrior Project initiative for his 2011 Country & Cold Cans tour. Leading up to Veterans Day on Nov. 11, Dierks will host preshow parties for select dates to support and honor wounded veterans who have sacrificed so much for our nation. His tour with special guests Jerrod Niemann and Eli Young Band will continue through Nov. 19.
Dierks' Miles & Music for Kids motorcycle ride and concert in Chicago raised more than $144,000 for the local Children's Memorial Hospital
Brad Paisley Visits Sesame Street
I see where my friend Brad Paisley and his beautiful bride, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, guest starred alongside new Muppet, Lily, in the Sesame Street special, Growing Hope Against Hunger. The special highlights struggles families face when there is not enough food to go around.
"Food insecurity is a difficult issue for adults to discuss, much less children," the Paisleys said in a written statement.
I say there should be no hungry children in America.
Faith Hill is set to debut the first single from her upcoming album on the CMA Awards on Nov. 9. The wait for new music is almost over for Hill fans. Faith last performed on the CMA show in 2006.
It's been a dozen years since Reba McEntire performed in the U.K., but she'll return to London as the headliner for the International Festival of Country Music, a daylong event taking place Feb. 26 at London's Wembley Arena.
Sugarland will return to Indianapolis on Oct. 28 for a free concert at Conseco Fieldhouse to help remember those killed when high winds knocked down the stage scaffolding prior to their Aug. 13 appearance at the Indiana State Fair. Tickets from the August show will be honored at next week's concert.
Josh Kelley recently opened a show for George Jones in the Country Music Hall of Famer's home state of Texas. Josh loved it, of course. All of us love the Possum.
And another Josh -- Josh Thompson -- tweeted his discomfort while in New York City for a performance at Joe's Pub. "I'd like to thank everyone for their support now since I may not make it out of this cab ride," he wrote. If you've ridden in a NYC cab, I'm sure you understand what he meant.
Hunter Hayes plays everything with strings -- and he played all of 'em on his self-titled debut album. Still in his teens, he just finished opening shows for Taylor Swift and is on the road with his own headlining tour. Hunter may be the most bragged-about new singer in Music Town.
See the new Hot Dish recipe of the week: Asparagus Casserole.