I left my position as founder of ACR and Radio host of this internet radio station last year. I have been a music lover since childhood and actually tried to play my mama’s acoustic 50’s Gibson SG as a teen.
When my friend from Texas asked me if I wanted to be involved, I thought it would be fun. He lived in Waco at the time and wanted it to be a country music station. I said sure, I’ll help however I can and began producing my own show. The idea of American Crossroads Radio was pretty simple. We discussed how it would be older county and developed a Gospel show for Sundays. We kept it old-timey sort of for a while.
My show though, was to be unique. It was to play hand picked songs by me and include my commentary and stories. I had complete creative control.
First we started out with a three hour time slot on Friday night, then later, due to my other obligations, dropped it down to one hour and it played several times every weekend.
At first it was pretty easy to find songs I liked to play and could come up with something to say to introduce myself to the listening audience. I’m pretty adorable and have intentionally kept my southern accent just the way it is.
After a few shows, I noticed something.
I noticed that it was becoming increasingly difficult to fill 1 out of every 5 songs with a female voice. I thought that wasn’t too much to ask for: one song in every block I produced.
So, I had to dig. I wanted to stay true to the vision of ACR and play older classic country as much as possible but still retain my own creative integrity. I started pulling from other genres to fill the need.
County has always been played in my life in Alabama. I was familiar with the current country music attitude towards women. You hear it in almost every song: “tan legs, get in the truck, drink this, let’s kiss under the moonlight.”
Honestly, we’re more than that.
My friend that invited me to join for no other reason that he believed in me then began cutting me down and calling me names because I chose to play female songs from other genres to fill the gap while he began playing the newer country music.
You can bet I researched Country Music Hall of Fame, and I was dismayed at the number of strong female role models in comparison to the male inductees.
There’s ya something to think about while you’re driving down the dirt road with the windows down. What kind of message are we sending to the women and young girls?
The last straw was when I played Alicia Keys and was ridiculed. I love her.. and I walked away from ACR. How’s that for full creative control?
I actually had so many listeners at one point my show shut down the TuneIn App, which is really cool so if you’re one of my radio show listeners – THANK YOU!!!
How did the fifties way of thinking about women never change? Why is it so hard to change it now?
Jamie Godwin, used to be radio host, now one of the owners at Riverbank Productions.
Let’s make some good music.