New UK radio station Country Hits Radio launches with Baylen Leonard and Una Healy
New national radio station Country Hits Radio launched in the UK this morning, serving a growing community of British country music lovers.
The station set the tone by launching with first track ‘Raised on Country’ by Chris Young – the recently released new single from the Tennessee singer. Other songs played in the first show included ‘My Church’ by Maren Morris and ‘Heartache on the Dancefloor’ by Jon Pardi.
Esteemed broadcaster Baylen Leonard kicked off proceedings, saying: “Hello there! I’m Baylen Leonard and this is Country Hits Radio. Welcome along here, where we celebrate country for all.
Country is many things – a lifestyle, a vibe, country is cold beers on a Friday night and a pair of jeans that fit just right. Country music is something that you can sing, dance, laugh and yes, sometimes even cry along with.
It’s three chords and the truth and it says things that sometimes, we can’t put into words. This is country music and it’s all for you.”
On the show, Baylen was also joined by singer and presenter Una Healy who will host a Saturday show on the station. Chatting about the new launch she said, “We want to bring in those already fans of country music and but we also want to bring in some new fans to appreciate how amazing this genre really is.”
Later on the station today, Drivetime host Ty Bentli will be bringing his show from one of the biggest annual country music events in Las Vegas – The Academy of Country Music Awards, also known as the ACM Awards.
Country Hits Radio is set to appeal to modern country music-lovers aged 25-44, and features a playlist of artists including Keith Urban, Kacey Musgraves, Thomas Rhett, Maren Morris, Florida Georgia Line, Dan + Shay and Carrie Underwood.
The UK contemporary country music scene is growing rapidly with album sales topping 1.9M in 2017; singles sales up by over 31% in the last six years; and a burgeoning live gig & festival scene. With a reported 8.7 million fans now listening to country music in the UK, it’s the biggest genre of music to have previously been without its own radio station.
Listen to Country Hits Radio on DAB Digital Radio, online, via smart speakers and mobile apps. Further information on how to listen can be found at www.countryhitsradio.co.uk
Country Hits Radio schedule:
Weekdays 07:00 – 10:00 – Country Hits At Breakfast weekdays with Jennie Longdon (Country Hits Throwback 09:00-10:00) 10:00 -13:00 – Baylen Leonard 13:00 -17:00 – Lou Nash 17:00 – 20:00 – The Ty Bentli Show from Nashville 20:00 – 00:00 – Naomi Kent – Country Hits Evenings (Emma Jones on Fridays)
Weekends Saturdays 09:00 -13:00 – Una Healy 13:00 -17:00 – Naomi Kent 17:00 – 21:00 – Scarlett Howard 21:00 – 00:00 – Emma Jones
Sundays 13:00 -16:00 – The Front Porch with Baylen Leonard 16:00 – 20:00 – Emma Jones – Country Hits Weekend 20:00 – 23:00 – Matt Spracklen