Oklahoma Radio Station Says It Won’t Play Beyonce Country Album—Quickly Backtracks

Beyonce country music
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Beyonce country music
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Photo Credit: 100.1 KYKC / Twitter

Beyonce dropped new music for her country era, but one radio station in Oklahoma didn’t get the message. Now after being informed by the BeyHive—100.1 KYKC is playing the new Beyonce single, “Texas Hold ‘Em.”

A Twitter user with the name Justin reached out to his local radio station to make the request yesterday. “After requesting, I received an email from the radio station stating, ‘We do not play Beyonce on KYKC as we are a country music station.’” Whoops, someone’s out of the loop. Justin provided a screenshot of the email showcasing the response—which quickly went viral among Beyonce fans online.

Fans online began calling the radio station and requesting the song, which eventually made it onto the station’s programming after multiple requests. The official Twitter account for the radio station tweeted an image of their upcoming programming featuring “Texas Hold ‘Em” nestled between Zach Bryan’s “Tishomingo” and Carrie Underwood’s “Wasted.”

“No one questions the authenticity of white rappers, but suddenly when it comes to country music you have to be of a certain hue to be respected?” one commenter wrote under the image of the radio station’s initial reply.

The move is reminiscent of Lil Nas X’s song “Old Town Road” causing a stir among country radio stations who refused to play the remix featuring Billy Ray Cyrus. But among country fanatics, there’s a perception that it’s not officially country unless it’s got a Nashville-based songwriter attached or was recorded in Nashville.

In 2016, Beyonce’s “Daddy Lessons” was rejected by the Grammy Country committee. She performed the track at the Country Music Association Awards alongside the Dixie Chicks, Meanwhile, CMT writer Alison Bonaguro highlighted why she believed the song was ruled ineligible, citing its lack of ties to Nashville’s recording scene.

It’s worth pointing out that Beyonce is a Houston native—which is as Southern as Southern gets. The notion that country music can’t be developed anywhere but Nashville is frankly a silly one—and a bit of gatekeeping at that. There was no hesitation to embrace upstart Oliver Anthony’s Appalachian-influenced sound—which had no ties to Nashville at all.

While 100.1 KYKC quickly corrected its mistake, it’s disappointing to see Beyonce’s country album facing issues with airplay on country radio stations before it has even dropped.