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If you’re a big country music fan …

If you’re a big country music
fan, then you just might have made the trip to the mecca of all events,
Nashville’s annual sold-out signature week – the CMA Music Festival. And if you
were one of the 80,000 visitors per day to the mothership (the new Music City
Center), then you likely met country music’s hottest breakout artists Branch & Dean from the label SSM
Nashville Records.
 
Branch & Dean were featured at
this year’s four-day event with a full schedule of packed house performances
and a meet-and-greet booth for up close and personal fan interaction. Sunday
night, as Branch & Dean played live to a standing-room-only audience at
Honky Tonk Central, a three-story megalith of a venue in the famed blocks of
Lower Broadway, The Country Music Association released reports of a 14 percent
increase in attendance over last year’s event.
 
Perhaps we will never know what or who is responsible for the record-setting
crowds packing the very heart of the music city to the tune of a whopping
320,000 visitors, yet we do know that fans and industry alike are warming up to
Branch & Dean like a kettle on a
potbelly stove. In a recent edition of MusicRow Magazine’s online Weekly Chart
Report –known widely as the authority among country music critics, the
publication said this, “Branch & Dean‘s “The Dash” is making fast inroads.”
 
Duo members Steve Branch and Marlon Dean Scallan grew up in the
small Jacksonville suburb of Macclenny, Florida, and after 15 years of
friendship the twosome officially paired in 2011, as Branch & Dean. Their second single which was released last
month entitled, “The Dash”, is a tribute to Steve Branch’s only son Theron
Steven William Branch, who passed away on March 15, 2013, following a long
struggle with Cystic Fibrosis. “The Dash” follows their debut single, “Your Ol’
Lady’s Gone”, which hit country radio 11 months ago and quickly became a
sensation earning an all-time record of most weeks at No. 1 in the history of
the British Hotdisc Chart.
 
Dean Scallan says of the CMA Music Fest week, “The out pouring of
love from country fans, radio, and music row has been incredible. We’d like to
thank by name some of the folks who took the time to come out to our shows: Jeff
Miller from Young Country TV, Matt Bjorke of Roughstock.com,
the incomparable Joe Guercio, Ed Salamon – legend and former Executive Director
of Country Radio Broadcasters, Katy Salamon of WSIX-Nashville Clear Channel
Broadcasting, Lee Williams from UK radio, journalist extraordinaire Kris
Midgett, and Ed Morris of CMT, to name a few.” And to their fans and
supporters, Steve Branch adds with sincerity, “I like to thank you from the
bottom of my heart for your kind words and thoughts. You will never know how
much your Facebook messages, emails, calls, and love have lifted my family and
me up in this hard time. God Bless you and I love you all.”

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