DG debuts “Country Gold with Randy Owen”

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Dial GlobalDial Global says the new program is a four-hour, music-intensive show hosted by the front man and lead vocalist for the iconic band Alabama.  In addition to its extensive playlist, Country Gold will also feature anecdotes from a guy who ruled the country music charts during its golden age….and Randy’s got the stories to prove it.


Country Gold, replacing the current Country Gold and Rick Jackson’s Hall of Fame programs, features a finely tuned music mix, contemporary imaging and, now, a superstar host.

It’s packed with at least 13 songs per hour and spotlights classics from the 1970s through the mid-90s.  Core artists include Garth Brooks, George Strait, Johnny Cash, Reba McEntire, Alan Jackson, Vince Gill, Randy Travis, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Clint Black, Merle Haggard, Travis Tritt, Dolly Parton and, of course, Alabama.

Randy Owen is a country music legend, with 43 number #1 singles, more than 75 million albums sold, 150 industry awards–including eight ACM and CMA “Entertainer of the Year” honors–two Grammys and 23 American Music Awards.  He is also a proud member of the Country Music Hall of Fame.

“I’m looking forward to visiting with the fans and playing some of my favorite songs and the greatest songs ever recorded,” says Owens.  “Hosting Country Gold is going to be fun and exciting for me. I hope listeners request songs they want to hear and feel a personal connection with my show.”

John Paul, Dial Global’s VP Programming says Country Gold is designed for Mainstream and Classic Country stations: “It’s the only place to hear those ‘lost’ country music stars from 1980-1995 that rarely get played on country radio.  Yet listeners still love that music.  So this is a specialty show, a destination for fans to hear those classics.”

Country Gold with Randy Owen debuts the weekend of July 14-15 and is available from Dial Global on a market-exclusive basis.


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Carl has been with RBR-TVBR since 1997 and is currently Managing Director/Senior Editor. Residing in Northern Virginia, he covers the business of broadcasting, advertising, programming, new media and engineering. He’s also done a great deal of interviews for the company and handles our ever-growing stable of bylined columnists.

32 COMMENTS

  1. Randy Owen would have been a great idea, for one weekend! The new show stinks! They did the same thing with Kix Brooks and ruined that show too. We don’t want stories, we want Country Gold. And the 1990’s is not Gold! I’m 32, I’ve been listening for 20 years, won’t anymore though. Pandora it is. Way to ruine a tradition.

    • I tend to agree. I’ve been listening to Country Gold Saturday Night on the local station for over a decade and in all the hosts I’ve heard (Mike Fitzgerald, Big John Howell, and Rowdy Yates) Owen doesn’t stack up. His voice tends to mumble and I don’t see him having the gas to last in this gig for a long time. On top of that, the general lack of requests doesn’t please me. That show was always a request show.

      I will say one thing of Owen: the updated music library is somewhat refreshing; Yates’ choices were getting limited (and he was the one that started pushing the 90s country into the playlist). As much as I like the 90s country, it’s like 90s rock: the sound changed at that point and it doesn’t fit with the rest of the classic genre.

      I suspect the ongoing CBS/Dial Global divorce and DG’s subsequent alliance with NBC had a factor in this; I heard a bunch of NBC commercials in last night’s show and Yates was a CBS employee down in Dallas.

    • I agree with you to a certain extent. But a couple of things you need to remember is that even when Big John Howell was still hostin’ it, he played a good amount of ’90s country quite often – lesser-known ’90s country more often than not. (Mike Fitzgerald claims that Dwight Yoakam’s classic “Ain’t That Lonely Yet” is his all-time favorite song, and he played it quite a bit.)

      And Big John frequently told stories that were related to whatever song and artist he’d play, too. But unlike Randy, Big John’s stories were actually interestin’, which is one reason why I listened to the show EVERY NIGHT during Big John’s tenure.

      I started listenin’ right before Mike left and Big John took over. Big John won me over unquestionably When Rowdy came, I still tuned in, but not quite as often as I did. Rowdy was good (and still is), but didn’t quite match Big John’s charisma. Then I stopped listenin’ altogether once Randy took over. Of all of the hosts, Big John’s my all-time favorite. He wasn’t tryin’ to be a traditional disc jockey; he was a DJ and a regular Joe all at the same time – and he pulled it off brilliantly.

      Don’t get me wrong, I love Randy Owen as a singer, and I miss Alabama as much as the next person in line; but as far as Randy bein’ a DJ, he stinks at it!!!

  2. Would like to know where I can find Randy’s new radio show on a station near me?? live in Rome Ga… AM BIG ALABAMA FAN… and what time is it on…
    Vicki Hodges
    Rome Ga

  3. Start off by saying i like Alabama and Owens. However, he needs to find something else to do in his retirement. He does not have the personality to be a disc man. He mumbles all night and what really got me hot was when he finally mentioned his request line, he thought people would call in to just ask questions about alabama. The show is about country gold, not just one band, all be it a great one.
    I have been listening for the past few years while Rowdy has been hosting. He was unbeat and fun. I would email him from time to time and he alway got back within a few hours. The only downfall was his playlist was a little short, but that most likely the result of playing the most requested songs.
    BIGGEST downfall is that the show was 5 hrs long and now its 4. some serious BULL

  4. I also like Alabama but Randy Owens is not the person for this gig. I respect him ad an artist but Big John Howell was great and Rowdy Yates is awesome…Randy doesnt’t have it. He is hard to understand and his anecdotes are not really entertaining. I’m also disappointed that the show went from 5 to 4 hours, why? Bring Rowdy back, he is upbeat and personable, I miss him.

  5. We have listened to Country Gold for years, and always looked forward to it. Big John and Rowdy were both great, but Randy Owen is a total disappointment. He simply is not DJ material. He mumbles and rambles on and on. Whose idea was this? Bring back our program, please!!!

  6. Randy is Great. I think he is very interesting and I have enjoyed every second of this show since he took over! I am sure it is not as easy as everybody thinks either. Randy is a perfectionist and give him a break as I am sure that as he gets more used to it – it will be the best! I think the program has improved immensely with Randy.

  7. Have been listening to Country Gold since 1990 and all of the previous dj’s did a great job and i think Randy Owen can do a good job, as well.He just needs to pick it up and not tell stories.He should interact with the fans when they call in, instead of just voice mail.Without the fans you dont have a show.1990’s and on is not Country Gold or traditional country music.Should be from 50’s thru 80’s country

  8. I think Randy Owen is doing a great job!!! Love him and the boys from Alabama. He plays great music and i think he has a great voice. keep up the great work Randy. I look forward to sunday nights so I can listen

  9. I love the band Alabama BUT I do not love Randy Owen on this show. I feel like I’m back in college listening to a professior that is monotone and boring. I miss Rowdy! It makes me sad but im done with the show.

  10. I never listened to the show because it does not air in this area.
    I love Randy as host. He is so down to earth. He has a lot of
    stories to tell because he knows all these people as astists. I
    listen online every Sat night because Randy Owen is the host.
    Great job Randy !

  11. I love Alabama but I’m not impressed with Randy as a host for my traditional country gold Saturday night. Rowdy lived up to his name- energetic and more request calls. I’m hoping Rowdy returns or starts a spin off show to compete. Bad decision Dial Global, please consider bringing Rowdy back so we can look forward to the Country Gold energy we used to get!

  12. I am a HUGE fan of Alabama and Randy Owen……as a country music group, been to several concerts as well, HE IS NOT THE RIGHT FIT FOR THIS POSITION!!!! We need the country music historians back!!!! Mike Fitzgerald, Big John Howell, and Rowdy Yates were an absolute great choice, their knowledge of country music is what we all liked, I couldn’t wait to hear which artist would come out of the gate first on Saturdays, we need the themes back!!!! This is a sad day in history…..tonight i will turn my radio off forever, as long as this catastrophe continues!!!! HUGE MISTAKE!!!!!

  13. I am pretty sure you have no idea how many listeners you have lost. Bring back Rowdy Yates. We will not listen to Randy and his terrible show. Randy is a very good musician, but not a good radio show host. You killed what was a long standing and enjoyable family tradition for us, looking forward to Saturday night and Country Gold. Whoever hatched this hair brained idea needs to get their walking papers……as well as the person who approved it.

  14. For a few years we have listened to “Country Gold Saturday Night” for one reason: Rowdy Yates. I don’t even listen to country music on a day-to-day basis (hate new country!) but tuning into to Rowdy and the classic, old country music of our youth became a “must-be” during our Saturday night fire-pits. Rowdy’s vibrant personality and his stories made it fun to hear the old Country classics. Truthfully, I like southern rock and my boyfriend is a local DJ/Radio Personality who plays top 40 hits in his employment. Rowdy became an essential part of our Saturday Nights – it was the fab 4 – me, my boyfriend, our dog and Rowdy! We miss him so much. I can still tolerate the new version of Country Saturday classics but we frequently flip around the radio stations now – when it was Rowdy we just sat back and relaxed and were entertained for his whole show. Bring Rowdy Back!!!! Nothing personal against Randy Owen, but he’s boring and flat – he’s not a radio personality like Rowdy Yates.

  15. S-N-O-O-Z-E-R. Call the show what it really is: “Randy Owen Talks about Randy Owen and a little bit of Alabama…blah, blah, blah”. We’ve been listening to Randy Owen hoping he improves. We were patient but it’s time to turn off the radio on Saturday nights. We sure miss our “Country Gold With Rowdy Yates”! Rowdy was entertaining, upbeat, and you could always count on lots of caller requests along with a wide variety of interesting stories about OTHER performers. And, you could always count on a caller requesting “I’m Gonna Hire a Wino”…a Saturday night Country Gold standard.

  16. I used to look forward to listening to Country Gold every saturday night, now without Rowdy Yates I have no interest in even listening to it anymore. Rowdy Yates is what brought this old great music alive.

  17. One word–Horrible! Saturday night was always special–Rowdy Yates and good-ol fashioned country music. Randy Owen can’t even put a sentence together. I tried to give him a chance, but I can’t wait until I can tune in elsewhere and hear Rowdy!

    Long live Rowdy Yates!!

  18. I am 33 years old and 90’s music to me is not classic. And I’m sorry Randy is not the person for this job. It has even turned me off to his music. Rowdy Yates should have never been let go from hosting this show. I stand behind him and hope to hear him again. The big wigs owe him a big ” SORRY”!!!

  19. The new format is downright horrible. Randy is clearly taped ahead of time and he really made the show dark and gloomy compared to Rowdy Yates. Would’ve loved the show if they kept Rowdy but they didn’t. Used to be my absolute favorite radio show on Saturday nights and haven’t listened to it since August. Rowdy is coming back next year and I pray his new show is picked up around here. I lost faith in dial global over this horrible decision. They blew it with Rowdy.

  20. Randy Owen didn’t do anything but ruin Country Gold these prerecorded bits of him mumbling between songs sucks he needs to find a new hobby!!!!

  21. Dial Global accomplished one of the biggest mistakes in recent radio history. If you check the blogs and Facebook, you will see that fans wanted Rowdy Yates to stay and this company has no concern for what their fans want whatsoever. Someone in management made a decision that obviously didn’t work and now they stay committed to a bad idea. No disrespect to Randy, who is a great guy and a superstar, but not a radio dj. Dial Global is paying the price for a horrible decision and should cut their losses and either leave the business or bring Rowdy back to please their listeners. God Bless Rowdy!!

  22. The new show is awful! “visiting with my fans”are you kidding me? Not how that is possible through a voicemail!

  23. The 1980’s were NOT the Golden age of Country Musi, and, While Randy is a fine singer and wonderful humanitarian (St. Jude) he is terrible on the show. I always listened to Rowdy EVERY Saturday night, even though it was on a local station that I hate, I listened because Rowdy knew what he was doing, and still does. This is a terrible waste of air time and the whole idea was ridiculous! Fire the guy who thought this was the way to go with Country Gold. He, or she, is an Idiot.

  24. Need to listen to your fans.. the majority on here agrees that altho we like Randy as a singer, he is NOT a dj ! I used to look forward to saturday nights, i tried listening to Randy gave it 3 or 4 tries and i could not take it.. his mumbling, his storys about himself… I Loved to listen to Rowdy! His knowledge of country music was enlightening !! I have banned listening to Randy and refuse to turn it back on until I hear Rowdys voice !

  25. Although I like Sawyer Brown, when a request comes in for George Jones I would like to hear George’s version of The Race is On not Sawyer Browns.

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