To the talented aspiring country artist, this significantly reduces the odds that their music will be played on their hometown or regional station. It becomes harder to build a fan base and establish a reputation that can get the ear of a Nashville decision maker. If the artist does become signed to a label, it is more difficult for music promoters to get access to radio’s corporate decision makers on their behalf.
Breaking out of the crowd and getting radio spins has never been easy, and that's nothing new.
Wannabe artists give up and head back home with nothing but a bitter taste in their mouth and less money in the bank every year and it's always been thus in the fickle music business, but in a year that gave huge radio success to Blake Shelton, Jason Aldean, Zac Brown Band, Thompson Square, Brantley Gilbert, Miranda Lambert, Lady Antebellum, The Band Perry and numerous others it's hard to convince me that the sky is falling.
New country stations are signing on as 2012 dawns in cities that have only had one station in recent years (some owned by the giant consolidated companies), so competition is actually heating up and that should drive more desire at radio to own the music discovery image as well as offer more variety to listeners.
As always, when consumers are poorly served, the marketplace fixes that very quickly.
Country music stardom has a lot more to do with possessing a unique talent and sound, infectious passion and great music than who owns what and where.