Country music building bigger & broader audiences

1:11 PM, Jul 12, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

MINNEAPOLIS --  It is official, this country has gone country.

"It is cool and it wasn't always cool and the reason it's cool is because it's in the mainstream now," K102 Morning Wakeup Crew co-host Donna Valentine said of the now long term upward trending of country music.

Country is now America's most popular music genre, according to the research group NPD.

Country now claims 28 percent of music fans, rock gets 27 percent and Top 40 has gone to 19 percent.

But, therein lies the secret.

Country nowadays blends all the genres together to become the music super-genre.

So it makes perfect sense that the second show to come to Target Field is an encore of the first.

"Sold out last time, sold out this time, it's a no brainer," Minnesota Twins spokesman Kevin Smith said of the upcoming Kenny Chesney concert set for Target Field on July 12th.

Last summer there wasn't an empty seat in the park for Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw's Brothers of the Sun show and this time around 40 thousand tickets were sold in a half an hour for Kenney's second act.

With no tickets left at face value K102 gave them away to the listeners so they didn't have to pay hundreds of dollars online.

But even when they were on sale, the best show seat sold for more than seven hundred dollars.

Bringing these kinds of acts to town is a top priority at every stage.

"The country fans want to see more country music here in Minnesota," Minnesota State Fair spokesperson Renee Alexander said.

Out at the Grandstand country acts are always welcome for the fair.

Big names have come but the fans want more.

"We do polls on our Facebook page and we get you know, Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean and Taylor Swift all the big ones are on the top of the list," Alexander said.

Country is home growing businesses too.

Just take a look at the 10-thousand plus square feet bar right smack dab in the middle of Downtown, country bar Cowboy Jack's.

"We have been able to grow with it, our brand has been able to grow so it's been really exciting," Cowboy Jack's Marketing Director Jesi Konen said of the explosion.

In just four years they have gone from one bar to six.

In no other sector of music have artists who once called pop music home been more embraced by country.

Lionel Ritchie made the switch, so did Darius Rucker and Adele says she plans to go country for her next album.

"Everything is completely evolving all the time, there is less segregation. Country music is popular music and I think that's the gist of it," Valentine said.

(Copyright 2013 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Most Watched Videos