Last week, the country music community rallied around Lindsay Ell after a radio station allegedly canceled an on-air appearance due to her relationship with DJ Bobby Bones.
Although Cincinnati’s KNCI quickly apologized for the move, fans, artists and industry heads shared their anger over the decision. On Monday’s broadcast of The Bobby Bones Show, the popular personality and disc jockey didn’t shy away from the issue. He said this wasn’t the first time that a radio station refused to support Ell over her ties to Bones.
According to Billboard, Bones stated that 13 terrestrial and nonterrestrial programmers told Ell that they would not play her music because of her relationship with him. He went on to say that he had recordings and documented examples of these statements. Bones also threatened to expose the names of these specific programmers.
If you don’t know much about the radio world, here’s a quick explanation. Music programmers are the ones who get to decide which records get played when and how often. In a perfect world, this would simply be decided by the quality of the music. But country radio has been known for its tendency to reward male artists with more plays. Although it’s been happening for years, the issue earned headlines two years ago when a radio consultant Keith Hill said that “if you want to make ratings in country radio, take females out.”
In recent days, Ell has been vocal about her disappointment with the situation.
“I’m very conscious about it because I know it was an issue,” Ell told the Tennessean. “Male or female, it shouldn’t matter who someone falls in love with or the clothes you pick out to wear or what you do in your spare time, it shouldn’t impact your career.”