Imagine the scene in various ‘country radio’ stations across the US this morning. People scratching their heads at the Kacey problem they now have. The problem they have surrounding ‘Golden Hour’. An album that has won the CMA award for ‘Album of the Year’ and then followed it up by winning the all-genre ‘Album of the Year’ at the Grammys (Kacey also won three three more Grammys within the country music genre).
“Hey Boss, do you think we should play Kacey now? It looks like she’s pretty popular and the album must be pretty good, by all accounts?“
“Unfortunately we’ve already got our female quota filled, so we’re going to have to leave her out. Shame, as many of our listeners tell me it’s pretty good. When I’ve checked out all of these male artist’s songs for the playlist, I may even have a listen myself, although time is short.“
Yes, ‘Golden Hour’ has managed to receive all of this acclaim with virtually no airplay from country radio. That is a stunning fact. The album just won the ALL-GENRE award for best album at the Grammys. BUT it was never deemed worthy of any airplay.
‘Music is a Work of Art’
Here’s the thing. Music is a work of art. It’s pretty clear that as a work of art, ‘Golden Hour’ is up there with the best. With all of these amazing accolades, I think we can safely say that this is now a fact and not an opinion. If you run a country music station, why wouldn’t you want to share such a work of art with your listeners. It’s the equivalent of running an art gallery and hiding away all of your masterpieces. It just doesn’t make any sense. Your star player right now is on the sidelines. Would the Patriots leave out Tom Brady?
I’d go as far as to say that if you are running a country radio station and not playing Kacey Musgraves, you’re actually letting the country music genre down. It’s the best genre in the world but if you’re not playing what is critically seen as the ‘best of the genre’ you’re doing a disservice to country music. You’re saying ‘this is the best country music has to offer’ through your playlist, when it’s clearly not. Shine a light on the excellence, don’t hide it away because a group of men decided decades ago that men should dominate country radio. Those same group of men are looking like dinosaurs this morning. So out of touch with the reality of what is happening in our wonderful genre it’s incredible.
This isn’t just about Kacey Musgraves. This is about all of the magnificent female talent that is out there today, who find it so much harder to make a breakthrough for one simple reason – they are female. Country Radio, you can keep your head in the sand – but if you’re not careful, you will start to lose your relevance. Hell, this morning I think we can safely say that you’ve already started to lose your relevance.
A female country artist started a fire last night. I’m going to enjoy watching it burn.
Article written by Nick Cantwell (twitter.com/nickbelles_gals)