Country Insider News

Nashville’s biggest country concert weekend since before COVID-19 came with lots of surprises — not all of them good. On Friday, Luke Bryan played a sold-out Bridgestone Arena, but Garth Brooks never took the stage at a similarly sold-out Nissan Stadium after that show was postponed three songs into the Grand Ole Opry’s opening set. Even so, both shows brought unexpected star power. Read More.

Chase Rice and Florida Georgia Line take the top spot with “Drinkin’ Beer. Talkin’ God. Amen.” moving 2*-1* at +793 spins/+2408 points. Dan + Shay are Top 3, rising 4*-3* with “Glad You Exist,” up 451/1594. Luke Bryan is one of two new Top 5 entries, with Waves” +872/+2853 and surging 7*-4*. Justin Moore is +455/+1458 with “We Didn’t Have Much,” which goes 6*-5*. Read More.

The Oak Ridge Boys replace Alan Jackson at the Grand Ole Opry’s Big Machine Music City Grand Prix show in downtown Nashville Sunday, Aug. 8. Jackson, who is unable to perform due to tour-related travel logistics, was initially announced headliner for the night of the inaugural Big Machine Music City Grand Prix race. Justin Moore, Riley Green, Danielle Bradbery and Callista Clark also will perform. Read More.

“CMA Summer Jam,” the Country Music Association’s two-day concert event held this week at Nashville’s Ascend Amphitheater, will air Thursday, Sept. 2 (8pm ET, ABC). The three-hour primetime special features more than 20 performers, including Jimmie Allen, Gabby Barrett, Dierks Bentley, Brothers Osborne, Luke Bryan, Luke Combs, Florida Georgia Line, Mickey Guyton, Miranda Lambert, Carly Pearce, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani and Carrie Underwood. Read More.

Townsquare Media Group has recruited another Market President/Chief Revenue Officer with a broadcast background – but not necessarily in radio. Chris Tingle joins the company to run its Texarkana cluster, which includes country “Kicker 102.5” KKYR, after selling OTT advertising to regional agencies as a Regional Director for SpotX. He earlier worked for Gray Television and Nexstar in Shreveport and Baton Rouge. Read More.

Classic country “104.5 Hank FM” KNHK Newport/Spokane, WA — purchased by Xana Oregon from Legend Broadcasting earlier this month — has now been acquired by Growing Christian Foundation. Xana had just closed on a $395,000 deal to buy KNHK and regional Mexican “Ke Buena” KYOZ (1300), along with the Spokane, WA-licensed translator K239CL at 95.7 FM, from Legend Broadcasting. Xana now sells to Growing Christian for $250,000. Read More.

Dan + Shay have Uncle Jesse’s stamp of approval. The duo sang Bobby Bones and Caitlin Parker’s first dance song – a cover of Jesse and the Rippers’ version of The Beach Boys’ “Forever” from “Full House” – and actor John Stamos applauded the performance. “What a beautiful version of Dennis Wilson’s (and Jesse’s) song, FOREVER, for a beautiful couple,” Stamos wrote on social media Thursday. Read More.

A new technology and content distribution agreement between iHeartMedia and TuneIn will put iHeart’s roster of 850 radio stations on the TuneIn streaming platform. In addition, iHeartMedia becomes TuneIn’s local ad sales representation partner, while TuneIn will use Triton Digital to monetize local inventory. The deal marks the first major Triton partnership in the U.S. since iHeart paid $230 million to acquire it from E.W. Scripps Co. on March 31. Read More.

Country Radio Broadcasters will present its August installment of the CRS360 Webinar series Wednesday, Aug. 4 (1pm ET, Zoom). The event, moderated by CRB Executive Director RJ Curtis, will feature New York Times best-selling author and clinical psychologist at the Cleveland Clinic Dr. Susan Albers. The panel is the second of a two-part series looking at ways to ease the return to the workplace. Read More.

“Sitting Pretty on Top of the World,” Lauren Alaina’s third studio album via Mercury Nashville, will be available Friday, Sept. 3. After teasing the announcement on social media, Alaina posted the album cover art Thursday afternoon. “Of corset’s an album,” she wrote. “‘Sitting Pretty on Top of the World’. 9.3.21.” The album is available for pre-order with instant grat track “It Was Me.” Read More.

Wednesday’s Nielsen Audio June 21 CDM results show iHeartMedia “Kat 103.7” KXKT Omaha, NE, on top of the market, reaching a 10.0 12+ AQH share for the first time since November 2019. In Akron, OH, Rubber City Radio WQMX (94.9) rises 6.8-7.7, the station’s highest share in more than two years. Also at No. 1: Buck Owens Broadcasting KUZZ Bakersfield, CA (550 AM/107.9 FM) (8.9-8.3). Read More.

Greg Solk, the veteran programming exec behind several of Chicago’s most beloved radio brands, has been promoted to VP of Programming and Operations for Audacy's Chicago cluster, which includes “US 99” WUSN. Solk has been Brand Manager and Program Director of adult alternative WXRT (93.1) since 2017. He has programmed some of Chicago’s best known stations including “The Drive” WDRV and “The Loop” WLUP. Read More.