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'O Brother, Where Art Thou?' Triumphs at the CMA Awards

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CAKE OFF Tours often lead to conflicts, but when your band includes foodies it can really heat up. ”[Trumpeter] Vince DiFiori and [drummer] Pete McNeal talk about food all the time, and I got sick of hearing what would be good if you sauté it with mushrooms,” says Cake singer John McCrae. ”So I decided to pit them against each other.” The result is the video for ”Love You Madly” (Comfort Eagle‘s second single), an Iron Chef-style cook-off in which the contestants prepared meals for judges Rick James, Phyllis Diller, and MIA TV chef Jeff ”Frugal Gourmet” Smith. ”It was pretty serious,” says McCrae. ”There was a lot of stress. I’m not gonna tell you who won.” However, McCrae will reveal pumpkin was the theme ingredient and the loser was derailed by botched legumes. ”It was Phyllis Diller who did one of them in. She got upset about somebody’s snap peas being uncooked. She was pissed.”

‘THOU’ WOW They’re gonna have to rename it ”I Am a Man of Only Occasional Sorrow.” The surprise hit soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Thou? had a huge night at this year’s Country Music Association awards (held Nov. 7 in Nashville). The song ”I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow” beat out Lonestar, Brooks & Dunn, Sara Evans, and Diamond Rio for single of the year, while Brother scored album of the year over Evans, Brooks & Dunn, Tim McGraw, and Alan Jackson. It’s especially notable given the tune’s scarcity on country radio; singles of the year are almost always big radio hits. ”I was dumbfounded,” says Dan Tyminski (of Alison Krauss’ Union Station), who moonlights in one-off band the Soggy Bottom Boys and sang ”Sorrow” on the CD. ”I thought the album had a chance, but single of the year? I would’ve bet the farm against that one, just for lack of airplay. After the album went double platinum, it surprised me more people didn’t say, ‘Maybe we should play it now.’ I think people kept waiting for it to go away. Oddly enough, it won’t.”

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