Big Country Stars Thank Radio


From Dierks Bentley and Jon Pardi performing at The Ryman to Thomas Rhett, who played opening night of CRS at the Amazon Music sponsored event, the gratitude from country artists was clear; thank you for playing our songs. It’s the goal every country artist has and not one complained that radio stations were playing their music for free and they wanted to be paid.

That theme continued when songwriters played their big hits at Bob Kingsley’s Acoustic Alley Thursday night. The relationship between country artists and country radio stations is rock solid. It’s a relationship that both sides know produces number one songs and loyal listeners.

Warner Nashville CEO John Esposito went even further on the topic. During an interview with Mike McVay Esposito said, on the music side of things you cannot win just on streaming. “Radio is still a big discovery vehicle. It’s a big win for us when we get into the top 20. That’s when we start making money.”

Esposito did say he would like radio to get songs to the top 20 faster but it was clear his point was getting a song into the top 20 on the radio is big.

Newcomer Kassi Aston, performing at The Ryman and Acoustic Alley, constantly reminded the radio audience that her new song was dropping Monday. No matter how many social media followers she has, or streams her fans have listened to, she knows scoring a hit on free radio across the country has the potential to make her a superstar.


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