Updated: May 20
This is our 2022 Country year end wrap up. What a long, strange trip it's been!
People need to stop dying, seriously. We lost a few of the very best this year, gosh.. But it wasn’t all tears y’all. There were some noteworthy surprises, and inklings of hope to soften the losses this year. We’ll get to our top song picks for 2022 shortly.
Let's dive into the country music industry picks from Billboard, and Music row for 2022.
But first did you know Bailey Zimmerman earned two platinum singles in 2022? It was his first time too! One was for Fall In love, and Rock and a Hard Place. No surprise here as his album made it to our top albums of 2022. That podcast is live now.
And a Q1 top song pick Wild As Her from Corey Kent was also certified gold last year. A first for the Oklahoma native. So let's start from the top with the top country song for the year 2022 as reported by billboard.
Top song, artist, and album for 2022 goes to Morgan Wallen, Wasted On You is the single, and Dangerous is the double album.
Morgan is also the top 4 artist on the all genre independent album chart w/ his 2018 release If I know Me..Let’s go ahead and hear billboard’s country song of the year Wasted On You..
Moving forward with our highlights for 2022, Regionally, The Broken Spokes took Swing Band of The Year at the Texas Country Music Awards.
Donice Morace won Emerging Artist of The Year. He was one of the top 10 new traditional country artists we spotlighted back in February 2020.
We were also very happy to see new traditionalists Robert Ray show strong radio airplay In Texas Country Radio. Check out our podcast w/ Robert on Pandora.
Speaking of great music, The Grand Ole Opry is going strong since 1925 and is still the longest running radio show in the United States. They added five incredibly talented humans to the Opry family in 2022: Lauren Alaina, Charlie Mccoy, Don Schlitz who co-wrote one of my favorite Keith Whitley songs. You know which one?
Yes, When You Say Nothing At All. He also wrote Randy Travis hit On The Other Hand. Yes, and Forever, and Ever Amen..
Ashley Mcbryde was also a new 2022 opry member. She had a banner year in 2022. She won the CMA and ACM Musical Event of the Year category for “Never Wanted To Be That Girl" w/ Carly Pierce. I’m so happy she recuperated from that near fatal horse accident. Oh my goodness.. She pretty much had to learn to walk again..unbelievable.
Still on the Opry, did you know that Jesse McReynolds of Jim & Jesse is now the oldest living Opry member? He will be 94 in July.
Jim & Jesse
All the new Opry inductees are amazing, but we were especially happy to see Jamey Johnson land a spot. He's recorded quite a few classics which we wholeheartedly feel is of critical importance. With Gen Alpha, and Gen z who may not have the benefit of growing up with old school country.
Yes, it is important that the artists that are still touring and or charting dust a few of those classic country gems off so the new listeners can hear it. One such song is this one..
Like the Grand Ole Opry, The Country Music Hall of Fame was very busy this year too! Though all are deserving, Ray Charles, Keith Whitley, and The Judds were among our favorites recently inducted.
Though Ray, and The Judds are part of the 2021 class of inductees, the ceremony did not take place until May 2022. Talk about soul crushingly sad though, as Naomi passed just days before the medallion ceremony. My goodness.
Check out the Bill Anderson and Chris Stapelton exhibit at the country music hall of fame. Go to countrymusichalloffame.org for more info. They also have a few online exhibits that may be of interest.
And speaking of Chris Stapelton, he added several more grammys to his collection including top song honors for Cold. Good song.
And Christone Kingfish won the top album in contemporary blues. We play him quite a bit on our show. What you might not know is that he is Charley Pride’s nephew. Best Roots Gospel album went to Carrie Underwood for My Savior.
The CMAs had some big surprises last year. I think the biggest mic drop was Lainey Wilson winning not only the New Artist of The Year award which she also won at the ACMs as well as song of the year, for Things A Man Ought To Know at the ACMs. Lainey also netted a CMAt Female Singer of The Year trophy! She’s embarking on her first headlining tour y’all. Check dates on laineywilson.com
And Cody is finally getting the recognition he’s worked so hard for with wins in the single of the year, and video of the year categories at the CMA.
The Brothers Osborne are the reigning country duo at both the ACM and CMA, and Miranda and Elle King won the ACM Video of The Year for I’m Drunk And I Want To Go Home.
Country music’s popularity is growing. According to the country music association 51% of Americans listen to country music. It was also the second fastest growing genre. Both Amazon, and Pandora have hired key executives to expand their footing in country music..
We also heard lots of quality country music On TV shows like Yellowstone, George & Tammy and Tulsa King which we are really loving! Sylvester Stallone is simply amazing. We’ve heard, Merle Haggard Waylon Jennings alongside actor Garrett Hedlund, Jake Worthington and so many more.
Here’s a song that really stood out on the show. It is by the reigning CMA and ACM duo of the year The Brother’s Osborne with a stone cold country song Back On The Bottle.
In our Good Guy Segment: Gary Levox the lead singer of supergroup Rascal Flatts was at a Save a Lot in Lexington Tennessee handing out gift cards to shoppers! And it was for no special reason whatsoever since it was October, but just to help people out. Timely as it was before the holiday rush! Two thumbs up.
Top grossing concerts for 2022 were Kenny Chesney’s
Here And Now tour which grossed over 135 Million dollars, And Morgan Wallen at over 120 Million
Listening to live music, and breaking bread with fellow enthusiasts is the country music way. Unfortunately, we lost several iconic establishments this past year. In 2021 we saw the George Jones Museum, and the Hermitage closed its doors. In 2022 the iconic
Mercy Lounge, and Ernest Tubb’s Record Shop bid a last farewell.
So many iconic country music stars got their start there. Probably one of the most memorable moments was when Miss Loretta sang there for the first time and dedicated a song to Patsy Cline who was in the hospital recovering from an accident.
Deaths: unfortunately we lost Miss Loretta last year, but she did leave quite a legacy. Loretta recorded 60 albums, earned 16 number ones and 3 Grammys
We will feel the weight of the loss forever.
We also lost the legendary TNN show host and country music champion Ralph Emory: A country music broadcaster for 50+ years. Ralph Interviewed artists on Nashville Now from 1983 to 1993. He was 88.
Dallas Frazier: Nashville songwriters hall of famer and the writer of countless classics including one of our faves 14 Carat Mind and Back In Baby’s Arms Again. He was 82.
Mickey Gilley: The face of Gilly’s. Home to the “Urban Cowboy''craze. It was arguably the world’s most famous honky tonK. He was the cousin of Jerry Lee Lewis who also passed this year. Micky was 86..
CW McCall: A successful ad agency artist, best known for singing the title cut from the 1978 Kris Kristofferson movie Convoy. CW was 93.
The beloved Naomi Judd: One half of one of the most successful country music duos of all time, The Judds w/ daughter Wynonna. Together they won multiple CMA and ACM awards and 5 Grammys. She was 76.
Jake Flint who died mere hours after his wedding is probably the most tragic death of 2023. He was 37.
There were also many bambinos born securing the future of country music for decades to come. Some of the proud papas & mommas were
Luke Combs became a proud papa! his son’s name is Tex
Jake Hoot’s new daughter is Madelyn
Jennifer Wayne from runaway June welcomed Lilly Maria
Randy Houser welcomed Harlan Banks
And Holly Williams, Hank senior’s grand daughter welcomed Georgia Grace
Things to look forward to in 2023:
Great news for Songwriters, the headline royalty rate will be set at 15.35%, which will be phased in over a five-year term. This is the highest rate in streaming history! For context, that translates into a $23 increase for 1 million audio on-demand streams. Amazon, Apple, Google, Pandora and Spotify all support the new rate increase.
And if your planning out your year check out the following music festivals
CMA Music Fest Date: June 8 -11, 2023
The Country Summer Fest in the heart of California wine country
Date: June 16-18, 2023
The Tortuga Fest in Fort Lauderdale