Miranda Lambert

The Hollywood Bowl. Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Madison Square Garden. They're the iconic venues that round out top-10 lists of the country's best places to see live music. But this summer, Morning Edition is visiting America's side stages, places the locals know and where players love to play. We begin, appropriately, in Music City at 3rd and Lindsley, an intersection that's the home and namesake of an unassuming Nashville venue.

Here is a sampling of headlines for the morning of December 1, 2014:

  • The nation’s first constitutionally protected tobacco trust set up by Oklahoma voters in 2000 is about to pay out as much in dividends as it receives from cigarette companies. (NewsOK)

  • Conservatives are raising concerns of tax increases because of a bill under consideration in the State Supreme Court. (Journal Record)

  • Oklahoma Islamic leaders are feeling increased tension between their faith and the majority Christians. (Tulsa World)

Miranda Lambert has painted herself as one of country music's bad girls: Whether it's solo or with her trio Pistol Annies, she's got a deep catalog of songs about revenge, guns, cigarettes and beer. But her new album, Platinum, shows a more vulnerable side.

Miranda Lambert's new album is called Platinum. Lambert has become one of the best-selling artists in country music, and one of the most critically acclaimed. Rock critic Ken Tucker says her new album continues Lambert's ongoing project to create songs about women who are complex, fun-loving, and assertive.

Pop stars are the ideal companions of their fans' daydreams, speaking their most romantic hopes and defiant declarations through the songs on the Top 40. Miranda Lambert, however, is the kind of friend who's not going to take anybody's bull. As country's most lauded million-selling artist, beloved by everyday listeners and critics alike, Lambert has crafted a body of work grounded in the realism of muscle, flesh and heart.