Hey Country Music, Where Are All The Women At?
Chances are you've at least seen or read some headlines about country music's problem with female artists. The problem is that there aren't enough. And the ones that have established themselves are having a hard time getting their music played. If you don't think it's an issue, take a look at the Entertainer of the Year nominees from the last two major country awards shows.
Last fall's CMA Awards featured these artists up for EOY. Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Chris Stapleton, and Keith Urban. This springs ACM Awards recently announced their EOY nominees. Same five guys. No women. None. Now I'm not suggesting that the five men nominated aren't huge stars and didn't have tons of success this past year. But where are the women? You couldn't throw in one?
What about Carrie Underwood? Her album 'Cry Pretty' hit the top of the charts. She's had two big singles off the album get tons of airplay on country radio. She wasn't worthy of Entertainer of the Year? How about Kacey Musgraves. Even though country radio has largely ignored her, all she did was go out and win CMA album of the year, and then take home FOUR Grammys for her stellar album 'Golden Hour'. She has been the face of country music to the mainstream for the past several months! She wasn't worthy of a nomination?
Reba McEntire announced the nominees yesterday and afterward she sounded the alarm to country music too. Reba expressed her displeasure at the fact there are no female nominees for Entertainer of the Year. She said, "it doesn't make me very happy because we have very talented women out there working their butts off." No woman has won Entertainer of the Year at the ACM's since Taylor Swift in 2011. She won the CMA EOY that year too.
Country music has several identity crises going on right now. But the one that needs our attention right away is the disparity in male and female artists. We need to let these powerful voices and these amazing stories be heard.