Ward Guenther counts singing “Forever and Ever, Amen” with Randy Travis on the Ryman Auditorium stage last week as one of the highlights of his life. Too bad he doesn’t recall much about the moment. “I remember seeing Travis Denning in my left periphery and Randy on my right,” the “Whiskey J… Read More.
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.
Shazam’s country Top 10 this week has only one new track: Jason Aldean and Carrie Underwood’s “If I Didn’t Love You,” reaching No. 6 (No. 83 overall). Shazam doesn’t include Elle King and Miranda Lambert’s “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home)” (No. 55) and Kane Brown & blackbear’s “Memory” (No. 60) on the country chart, otherwise they would rank Nos. 3-4. Read More.
Nielsen Audio June 21 CDM results show SummitMedia KFDI Wichita, KS (101.3) and Cumulus Media “K100” WKKO Toledo, OH (7.9) keeping the top spots in their respective markets. In Mobile, AL, iHeartMedia “95KSJ” rises from a 4.9 12+ AQH share to a 6.6, the station’s highest share since the October 20 survey. Read More.
Four radio stations in Lafayette, IN are part of a larger deal that also has seven TV stations, a centralized NewsHub in Little Rock and the Nulogic Digital Marketing Agency going to Coastal Television Broadcasting Group. The radio stations have been operated under the Star City Broadcasting banner and include country WYCM, adult hits WBPE, CHR WAZY and talk WSHY. Read More.
Keith Urban is the newest addition to the annual ACM Party for a Cause lineup on Tuesday, Aug. 24. “I can’t wait to play live, and I will see you there,” Urban said in a video posted to social media on Friday. SiriusXM The Highway’s Storme Warren will host the event, to be held in Nashville for the first time. Read More.
Willie Jones and Cooper Alan will take part in “CMT Hot Prospects,” a free, pre-game concert series in partnership with CMT and the Atlanta Braves. Concert recaps will air the week following each concert during “CMT Hot 20 Countdown” hosted by CMT’s Ashley ShahAhmadi on Saturdays and Sundays (9am ET, CMT) and promoted across the Braves’ social channels. Read More.
Diane Lockner rises to Senior Director of Regional Promotion at Triple Tigers Records. Lockner, who previously was a director, will continue to support the Northeast and Midwest regions under SVP of Promotion Kevin Herring and President Norbert Nix. “Diane’s leadership has been an integral part of Triple Tigers success since its start in 2016,” Herring said in a release. 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.
Hank Williams Sr. (not Jr.) sang “Lovesick Blues” on the Grand Ole Opry and shocked many longtime country music fans with his new sound. Before that, Bob Wills added drums to his music onstage at the Opry. Both were considered “too pop” in the 1940s. Fast forward to the new millennium, and we see pop artists getting on the country bandwagon with mixed success. 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.
Cumulus’ country stations in Des Moines, IA — “Nash FM 97.3” KHKI and KJJY (92.5) — both saw their 12+ AQH shares rise in Nielsen Audio’s June ’21 CDM results Thursday, giving country an overall 13.6 market share, up from 12.3. In the two-book markets, US Stations “US 97” KQUS Hot Springs, AR, is No. 1 in the market with a 10.8 share for Spring ’21. 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.
On Sunday afternoon, Waccamaw Broadcasting flipped WGTN (1400) from oldies-standards “The Memories Station” to classic country “Countryfied 107.5.” WGTN-AM, which simulcasts on Georgetown-licensed translator W298CO at 107.5, had been in its previous format for less than a year. It’s at least the sixth format for the 72-year-old station in the past four years. Read More.
In 1990, Grand Ole Opry management invited Garth Brooks to join their show. This week, he returned the favor. Brooks has invited the Opry to open his Nissan Stadium tour stop in Nashville on Saturday. “It’s going to be a historic night…we’re honored to be opening Opry member @garthbrooks #GARTHinNASHVILLE Nissan Stadium show,” the Opry posted to social media Thursday. 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.
“Front and Center” will return for its 10th season on Sunday (check local listings, PBS) with a country-heavy lineup. Season 10 launches with an archival concert by the late Glen Campbell filmed in August 2008 at the Troubadour in West Hollywood. Dustin Lynch, Brantley Gilbert, Old Dominion, Lady A and Maddie & Tae will be highlighted in future episodes. 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.
Thirteen tracks on Mediabase’s country chart this week have something in common: They’ve increased their spins by at least 100 in each of the past four weeks. Some, of course, have put together much longer streaks, like Chase Rice and Florida Georgia Line’s “Drinkin’ Beer. Talkin’ God. Amen.” at 16 weeks. The streaks aren’t all at the top of the chart, either. 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.