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The Rushmore Report: First Grammy Awards – This Day in 1959

The Grammy Awards have become an American institution. But it hasn’t always been that way. There was a time when there was no such thing as the Grammy Awards. That all changed on this day in history – 58 years ago. Televised by ABC, hosted by Mort Sahl, and held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, the awards night recognized musical accomplishments for 1958. Let’s have fun – these were the winners.

Record of the Year – Domenico Modugno for Nel Blu Dipinto di Blu

Album of the Year – Henry Mancini for The Music from Peter Gunn

Song of the Year – Domenico Modugno for Nel Blu Dipinto di Blu

Best Recording for Children – Ross Bagdasarian, Sr. for The Chipmunk Song

Best Country & Western Performance – The Kingston Trio for Tom Dooley

Best Jazz Performance – Ella Fitzgerald for The Duke of Ellington Songbook

Best Album Cover – Frank Sinatra for Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely

Best Vocal Performance – Perry Como for Catch a Falling Star

Best Performance by a Dance Band – Count Basie for Basie

 

The Rushmore Report: Ailing Glen Campbell Says ‘Adios’

Glen Campbell announced plans to release his final studio album, six years after the country singer was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. “Adios” will cap off the singer’s more than five-decade long career and will include songs Campbell has always wanted to share but never got around to recording. So it is fitting that the 80-year-old star would offer his final good-bye his way – through the music Americans have enjoyed for generations.

Campbell recorded “Adios” in Nashville following the 2012 “Goodbye Tour” which he embarked on after he was first diagnosed with this dreaded disease.

“Glen’s ability to play, sing, and remember songs began to rapidly decline after his diagnosis in 2011,” the singer’s wife Kim Campbell said in a press release. “A feeling of urgency grew to get him into the studio one last time to capture what magic was left. It was now or never.”

The 12-track album will include songs from Campbell’s longtime collaborator Jimmy Webb and a new version of his famous song “Postcard from Paris” with Campbell’s children Cal, Shannon, and Ashley singing the line, “I wish you were here.”

“What you’re hearing when listening to ‘Adios’ is the beautiful and loving culmination of friends and family doing their very best for the man who inspired, raised, and entertained them for decades – giving him the chance to say one last goodbye to his fans, and put one last amazing collection of songs onto the record store shelves,” Kim said.

Campbell’s health has deteriorated greatly since his 2011 diagnosis. His wife revealed in March that the singer can no longer play guitar and struggles to sing.

Kim continued, “Faith has always been the central part of our relationship. I’m so pleased that as Glen has entered the later stages of this illness, it’s evident that he has retained his awareness of God. That really comforts me to know that he has that sense of God’s presence in his life, that he’s not alone.”

The Rushmore Report: Tony Romo – ‘This Matters More than Football’

It was a sad day for football fans across America – a day few saw coming. Tuesday, the 14-year veteran of the Dallas Cowboys announced his retirement from the NFL. With the Houston Texans standing in the wings, offering Romo the chance of a Super Bowl which has eluded him all these years, the four-time Pro Bowl quarterback is leaving the football field to be an analyst for CBS.

What drove his decision? Why would Tony Romo step away from the game he loves so much when his best shot at football’s ultimate prize was right in front of him? Playing for the Texans was tempting, he said. But there is one thing that matters more to Tony Romo than football.

Tony Romo believes in God. In fact, he says that many of his life’s deepest struggles are what caused him to turn to Christ as his Savior. But he hasn’t always been so strong in his faith.

Antonio Ramiro “Tony” Romo was born on April 21, 1980. He was raised in a military family and became active in sports at a young age. He was active in church, but did not surrender his life to Christ until he was in college. Romo says, “I grew up in church, in Sunday School. But I had never known how to give myself over to the Lord. You could say, I never thought deeply about it. To me, Jesus was Santa in some ways.”

While playing at Eastern Illinois University, Romo realized God had been trying to get his attention. In college, he became a true disciple of Christ. He says, “I had never known how to give myself over to the Lord. I remember in college a few people talking about their faith in Jesus Christ. It was then that I became a real believer. It was so freeing to finally know that someone other than me was sovereign over my life and I could rest in that.”

Reflecting back on his career, the Cowboy record-holder says, “I’d love to say that my life was magically perfect after I came to the Lord, but it doesn’t work that way. You still sin, it’s still hard. But I keep getting back up and praying and asking for forgiveness and keep my faith. And he gives me peace.”

Romo is a family man, married to 2008 Miss Missouri USA Candice Crawford. He told reporters, “I think one of the most important things you’re going to do in your life is hopefully be a spiritual leader of your family.”

As for his future, Romo says, “I want to let people know I feel blessed. I don’t want to squander a gift that’s been given to me to do this. I want to give back the way the Lord intended when he allowed me to have these abilities.”

So after an exciting 14-year NFL career, Tony Romo is retiring. He is leaving the game he loves so much in pursuit of the one thing he loves even more – his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

As a Houston Texans fan, I’m bummed. But as a follower of Jesus Christ, I get it. And I’ll be rooting for Tony Romo more now than ever.

The Rushmore Report: Selena Gomez Goes Public with Her Faith

Pop star Selena Gomez took a break from her busy schedule to watch one of her favorite pastors, Judah Smith, preach a sermon that inspired her to quote the Apostle Paul. “Today, I watched a sermon from one of my favorites,” the young pop star wrote in her Instagram page. She capped off her pastor shout-out by sharing a Bible verse with her legion of fans. It’s found in Romans 7:15.

She quoted, “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.”

The 24-year-old didn’t explain why she chose that verse to go along with her post about the Los Angeles-based City Church pastor, but many of her fans said they were encouraged by her public display of faith.

“Wow, bless you for being a Christian in Hollywood, must be difficult,” one comment read. Others questioned whether or not she was talking about regret over her past relationship with Justin Bieber or her new boyfriend, The Weeknd, but she did not respond.

This was not the first time Gomez put her faith on public display. Last year she surprised fans at Hillsong Church’s Young & Free Revival Concert in Los Angeles when she sang an original worship song for the first time.

“I got to perform my first worship song I ever wrote. So grateful for His grace and understanding,” she posted.

In a world where it is politically correct to defend radical Islam and rebuke mainstream Christianity, it is refreshing to have a young star such as Selena Gomez share her love for Christ from the midst of a thoroughly secular pop culture.

Good job, Selena! May others be emboldened to follow your example!

The Rushmore Report: Rising Conservative Star Tomi Lahren Suspended for Pro-Choice Comments

Tomi Lahren has become the biggest media star among young conservatives. Her daily blogs and appearance on The Blaze have attracted millions of rabid followers. With weekly appearances on such Fox News shows as Hannity and The O’Reilly Factor, she has given voice to a new generation of conservatism. Lahren has become a conservative darling – until now.

Tomi was suspended by The Blaze for one week following the controversy that swirled around her expression of an unsuspected pro-choice position in an interview on The View.

Her comments brought immediate condemnation from Glenn Beck, founder of The Blaze. He found Lahren’s comments offensive to the conservative cause. In her own defense, Lahren said it was hypocritical to be both pro-life and for limited government.

Lahren, age 24, is a big supporter of President Trump. Her exact words on The View: “I’m someone that is for limited government, so I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say I’m for limited government, but I think that the government should decide what women do with their bodies.”

She added, “Stay out of my guns, and you can stay out of my body as well.”

She later clarified on Twitter that she does not advocate for abortion, but maintained her pro-choice stance despite criticism.

Beck, who is a Mormon, offered his views in an article on Monday, explaining that he very much believes that one can be both pro-life and for limited government.

“The founders were really, really clear. The preamble of the constitution clearly states to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity. Well, who are our posterity, if not our unborn children and grandchildren and great grandchildren?” he wrote.

Nicole Russell echoed those views when writing for The Federalist, when she said that limited government is not the same as no government and anarchy, where there are no laws.

Russell argued that legalized abortion “enables the powerful (grownups) to prey on the weak (unborn babies). This kind of predatory tyranny is exactly what a constitutionally limited government that guarantees equal fundamental human rights to all is supposed to prevent.”

Lahren responded to the suspension in a series of Tweets, some jokingly. “So I’ve got some ‘me’ time tonight. Anything good on TV?”

In another Tweet, she wrote, “This life can be lonely. Thank you to those on all sides of the political spectrum – for your support. Agree or disagree, it means the world to me.”

Despite Tomi’s success – she has 4.3 million followers on her Facebook page alone – there have been rumors that she might be cut from The Blaze altogether, as there are rising tensions between her and other hosts.

About the Author

Stoyan Zaimov is a writer for The Christian Post.

 

The First TV

It goes back to 1883, when Paul Nipko invented a scanning device that could break down an image into a sequence of tiny pictorial elements. Experiments continued into the 1920s. In 1928, GE presented the first dramatic production on television. NBC began telecasts from New York in 1932. In 1939 America saw its first televised baseball game. The first official network broadcast came on February 1, 1940, on NBC. Rumor has it that Larry King was the anchor.

Early milestones included the coverage of Pearl Harbor in 1941, The Jackie Gleason Show, and wrestling. By 1948 there were 36 stations on the air. New York and Los Angeles each had seven stations. Houston had one. I believe Dave Ward anchored the local news in Houston.

From such humble beginnings, television has exploded to what we have now. I was pondering this the other day as I watched the water polo match between Riverdale High School and the local YMCA, on ESPN 27.

Isn’t it amazing how much progress we have made as a nation? We are no longer burdened with reading books and talking about the things of God as a family, just to pass the time.

The Rushmore Report: Jennifer Garner Backs Working with Trump, Blasts Hollywood

Church-going Christian actress Jennifer Garner has said that she is ready and willing to work with President Donald Trump when it comes to helping the country’s rural working class, and that unlike some of her Hollywood friends, she is not “refusing to engage” with him. In an interview with The Washington Post, she balked at Hollywood’s refusal to give Trump a chance.

Garner said, “People felt like Trump really understood them, that he was going to come in and create jobs for them. They felt like they needed something to just turn everything upside down. I’m looking forward to helping him make good on what they saw as promises, a mandate from him, that he was going to make their lives better.”

The newspaper pointed out that some members of the Hollywood elite are feeling split between working alongside Trump in their various charity efforts or protesting the president over his policies and remarks.

Trump was made the butt of a number of jokes during the Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles, with the Republican pushing back by arguing that those opposed to him are “losing badly.”

Garner admitted that some of her friends “want to turn their back to his administration and just don’t even want to engage.” She added, “If he’s willing to help the poor kids who got him elected, then let’s do it. They certainly think he’s going to.”

Jennifer Garner has starred in faith-based movies, such as Miracles from Heaven, and has regularly been spotted taking her children to church. The Golden Globe award-winning actress has said that making faith-based films has inspired her even further to continue attending church.

“I will say that being around this community, and while I’ve always gone to church in West Virginia, that when I got back to Los Angeles, I was talking to my kids about the movie and they said, ‘Mom, you don’t take us to church,’ and we went that Sunday, and they went today without me,” Garner said in an interview that year.

One of Garner’s main initiatives has been the nonprofit Save the Children organization, which is famous for its international projects, but also for helping poor rural communities in the U.S. when it comes to educational programs.

The actress has for years urged Congress and state governments to fund reading and literacy programs that include all-day kindergarten, and called on the U.S. government to expand credits and deductions for the education needs of families.

“Send me a ticket to Mar-a-Lago,” she said. “I’m ready to go down and have a steak and a good chat (with the President). I really think it’s great, if he’s willing to help the poor kids who got him elected.”

About the Author

Stoyan Zaimov is a reporter for The Christian Post, with a focus on current events and Christian culture.

The Rushmore Report: Hollywood, Spare Us Your Hypocrisy

Voters don’t take much notice of what Hollywood says about politics. If they did, Hillary Clinton would be president by now. What’s more, when Meryl Streep launched an attack on President Trump, it did not surprise. A Hollywood star unloading on a Republican? Seen it. Donald Trump responding with a Twitter counterattack on Twitter? Predictable.

No question, Streep’s recent emotional speech was delivered with tremendous dignity and made a very good point – one proven by Trump’s nasty reply. Even if he’s innocent of parodying people with disabilities, he’s upset plenty of minorities in his campaign for the White House. Some Mexican immigrants, remember, are “rapists” and “killers,” according to him. Black people should vote for him because they have nothing to lose. And so on.

But people are being lectured by Hollywood. Why? Partly it’s because Los Angeles is a strange, alien land full of beautiful eccentrics who use private jets like the rest of us use cabs. Partly because their politics are often far-left and absurd. But also because Hollywood is grossly hypocritical. The movie makers may hush over liberal causes at award ceremonies, but the industry they work in does not reflect those values. On the contrary, Hollywood can be just as regressive and conservative as Donald J. Trump.

For instance, it is estimated that 95 percent of characters with disabilities on TV are played by able-bodied actors. That’s pretty shameful. Actors with disabilities certainly exist and yes, Hollywood does make the occasional movie about the differently abled, such as the 2014 Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything. But that was a relatively low-budget movie designed to win awards, and the part was still played by a good looking, able-bodied actor so privileged that he went to Cambridge University with me.

What is rarer is to see an actor with a disability in a big-budget, leading-person role, or for Hollywood to make a mainstream movie about the day-to-day realities of a working-class person with a disability.

Their invisibility is not an isolated problem. For a country where 17.4 percent of Americans are of Latino heritage, it’s strange that they only make up an estimated 5.8 percent of characters in TV and film. Hollywood has tried to make up for the notorious dearth of Oscar nominations for people of color, and we should applaud recent movies like Hidden Figures that help redress this.

But let’s face it: Hollywood still undervalues African-American talent and audiences and has historically shied away from interracial relationships. And the movie industry still hires straight actors to play gay and transgender characters, which some see as a form of blackface.

Hollywood is about making money and its corporate, Trump-style ethic always wins in the end. For every Oliver Stone movie examining capitalism and war there are countless films that either glorify violence or exist to get us to buy something.

It is Hollywood that helped make Donald Trump. Hollywood crashed out apocalyptic superhero movies that burned into our consciousness the idea that the world is on fire – when it is actually safer than ever – and that only a strong man can put out the flames. Hollywood has also promoted cynicism, spinning a line in perpetual irony that encourages us to take everything as a cruel joke.

For years, movies and shows like Family Guy have been  encouraging us to laugh at pain and, yes, sometimes disability. Trump is the logical extension of this culture.

Meryl Streep is a genius, she was right about Trump and she has a right to say what she feels. But the collective smugness of Hollywood has to end. If it wants to change the world, it has to start with its own product. Make movies that solve problems with intelligence rather than force – and make heroes out of ordinary, complex people. Get that right and audiences will listen more to what actors have to say.

About the Author

Timothy Stanley is a historian and columnist for Britain’s Daily Telegraph, and author of Citizen Hollywood.

The Rushmore Report: The Faith and Politics of Tom Brady

This Sunday in Houston, Tom Brady attempts to do what no quarterback has ever done in the 51 years the NFL has been playing Super Bowls – win five of them. Along with Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana, Brady has four Super Bowl titles. At age 39, he is still the best. But what do we know about his personal faith and politics? The answers may surprise you.

Tom Brady was born and raised in San Mateo, California. He was brought up in a devout Irish Catholic family. Brady stayed true to his faith even into football stardom. He got married in a Catholic ceremony (to supermodel Gisele Bundchen) and their son was christened a Catholic.

But apparently, Brady isn’t devout enough for his father, who used his son’s fame to gain some celebrity himself in the Catholic community. Tom Brady, Sr. spoke at a Catholic gathering called the Worcester Diocesan Men’s Conference in Massachusetts. During his speech, Brady, Sr. professed his devotion to Catholicism while backhandedly chastising his son for not being all the Catholic he can be.

Brady has another child (with supermodel Bridget Moynihan), who was born after Brady and Moynihan broke up. This is a big no-no for Catholics. Brady, Sr. said: “When it comes to grandchildren being born outside of wedlock, we’re three for three. There’s disappointment there because that’s not really kind of the way it’s done.”

It might be safe to say that Brady is not a devout Catholic. In other words, he’s no Tim Tebow.

Tom Brady’s political affiliation has actually been the subject of significant controversy. In 2004, Massachusetts was in the national spotlight with Brady leading the New England Patriots to the Super Bowl while Massachusetts Senator John Kerry was attempting to unseat George W. Bush as president. Naturally, Massachusetts was rooting for Kerry, but Brady was attending Bush’s State of the Union Address.

As a result, Brady came under quite a bit of political scrutiny, with some news organizations going so far as to try to trace his voting record across numerous addresses and states. They didn’t find much. Some argued that Brady was merely an unwilling pawn in the grand chess game of election year politics. When Brady appeared on 60 Minutes and was directly asked: “Republican or Democrat?” He dodged, saying, “You know, I’m actually an Independent, and I have been for some time. But there’s no doubt this world needs a lot of help.”

But analysts have largely come to the conclusion that if Brady had to choose, he’d be a Republican – not only because he attended Bush’s State of the Union, but also because he said that the person he most enjoyed meeting was former Republican President Gerald Ford.

As for Donald Trump, the president claimed Tom Brady’s support during the recent presidential campaign. “Tom called today and said, ‘Donald, I support you, you’re my friend, and I voted for you.'” However, Brady never came out publicly for Trump. His wife, Gisele, when asked if he supported Trump, gave a resounding “No!” Still, he often wore a “Make America Great Again” cap in the locker room, according to teammates and many in the local sports media world.

Beyond that, Brady has expressed a desire to run for a Senate seat, probably in California, saying politics is his “craziest ambition.” Why not? Schwarzenegger did it and Brady has the charisma and the money.

About the Author

Tom Kershaw is a freelance writer. An avid musician, he describes himself as a “musician, family man, and writer.” He has been published by numerous print and web-based outlets.

The Rushmore Report: Ainsley Earhardt on Success, Motherhood, and God

If you’re an early riser, chances are you’ve seen Ainsley Earhardt, the newest co-host of Fox News Channel’s Fox & Friends. When not on the famous curvy couch with Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade, Ainsley interviews big names like Melania Trump. Now she is speaking out on her amazing success, motherhood, and most of all, her faith in God.

Earhardt’s new book, Take Heart, My Child: A Mother’s Dream, has shot to #1 on the New York Times best-sellers list.

“I was like, oh, my word, this is such a God thing!” Ainsley told CBN News in an exclusive interview. She compared her reaction to Abraham’s wife, Sarah, in the Bible. “Sarah laughed, because Sarah was barren and then she found out she was pregnant at 100 years old – or however old she was – and she just laughed. I can totally relate to that because God is so good and God did this and it just makes me laugh because I knew he would.”

When she’s not on the air, Ainsley spends time with her one-year-old daughter, Hayden, for whom she wrote the book.

She says the Bible was the inspiration for the title.

Take Heart: God Is in Control

“I feel like I can take heart because I know that he’s in control, and I want Hayden to know that she can take heart. God is in control. I will never let her go. I am always here for her, and I will love her unconditionally, the way God loves me,” she continued.

Ainsley wrote the book while she was pregnant with Hayden. She filled the book with inspirational quotes like the ones her own dad used to leave for her and her siblings at the breakfast table.

“I think my favorite one – because every child likes Disney World – was a quote from Walt Disney: ‘I hope I’ll never be afraid to fail,’ because Dad always said, ‘you never want the fear of failure to stand between you and your destiny.'”

God, Are You Sure?

Ainsley grew up in South Carolina, majored in broadcasting, and landed anchoring jobs in South Carolina and Texas before joining Fox News in 2007.

“When I got the job with Fox, I said, ‘God, are you sure?’ I know nothing about politics, I’ve been covering car accidents and street closures and the pothole patrol in my hometown. I’m going into this big job.”

It’s a Job Ainsley Takes Seriously

“For Fox & Friends, I wake up at 3:00, I leave the apartment around 3:45. I go straight into my office, I put on the dress and the heels and all of that. I go into hair and makeup, and while I’m there – which is awesome that they provide that – I’m studying for the show, I’m reading what’s coming up,” she said.

“The night before each show, I’ve studied for my interviews, but that morning I get the talking points, and the talking points are all ad-lib. So if we’re talking about the election or black Friday, or Christmas or whatever it might be – or even the book – we want to be prepared,” she explained.

Ainsley Shares Her Faith on Air

“Fox has never told me I can’t share my faith,” Ainsley told us. “They embrace that and they want us to be real and want us to be ourselves. And they’ve always said the audience can tell if you’re not yourself, so I decided just to let loose.”

Giving Credit to God

How does she juggle it all? “Full disclosure. It’s not easy,” she says. “I totally rely on God.”

Ainsley says she is grateful for all of her success, and gives God credit for it all. “The moment I stop giving him the glory is the moment I will fall, and I will fail, and I know that. I’ve experienced that in my life. I’ve turned my back on Him and it was the hardest time of my life. I trust Him and I love Him. I’m just grateful. All of my dreams have come true.

About the Author

Wendy Griffith is a co-host for the Christian Broadcasting Network.