Crook & Chase Are Now Members of The Country Radio Hall of Fame!
On Tuesday night, February 26th, Lorianne Crook & Charlie Chase were inducted into the Country Radio Hall of Fame.
WATCH THE VIDEO OF TIM'S INTRODUCTION HERE!!
At a special dinner launching the 2013 Country Radio Seminar in Nashville, TN, the CRB Board of Directors welcomed its newest members to the Country Radio Hall of Fame. The evening started with a tribute to George Strait, who was presented with the CRB Career Achievement Award. George was on hand to accept the honor and kept his remarks typically short, saying that one of the best parts of being in the music business was getting to work with country radio during his 30 year career.
Next came the induction of Gaylon Christie, a 50 year radio veteran who served Fort Hood, TX... veterinarian turned DJ Don Carpenter from Detroit's WYCD... Eddie Edwards, who has been on-air at WNOE in New Orleans for 20 years... and Bill "Dex" Poindexter, a mainstay at US 101 in Chattanooga for nearly 2 decades.
The evening ended with Tim McGraw taking the stage to introduce Crook & Chase. Tim acknowledged how important radio is to an artist's career, and he thanked Lorianne and Charlie for the many years they have helped bring his music to the attention of country fans. He spoke of Lorianne's beauty and grace, and read a letter from his wife Faith Hill in which Faith thanked Lorianne for setting such a strong example to women working in the music industry. As for Charlie, Tim told the story of how he named a jackass on his farm after Charlie, because the animal liked his wife better than Tim. In her letter, Faith also mentioned Charlie's namesake, and admitted she loved that jackass. Tim joked that he wasn't quite sure which jackass she was speaking of.
As Crook & Chase took the stage, Lorianne told the audience how Tim's appreciation of their support early in his career has always reminded her that their job is not to fill time in their radio and tv shows, but to be a conduit between the artists trying to live out their dreams and the fans who love their music. It was Lorianne's husband Jim Owens who first saw the two hosting different shows on competing tv stations and thought they would work well together. That was 30 years ago this year, and boy was he right! They launched their syndicated television show in 1983 and began creating radio programming 3 years later. Before long, they were hosting The Nashville Record Review, the forerunner of The Crook & Chase Countdown.
On stage, Lorianne pointed out that they have worked closely with less than a half dozen people in the nearly 25 years they've been producing their radio countdown show. She introduced their very first radio producer, Kyle Cantrell, who is now the award-winning programmer for Bluegrass Junction on Sirius XM. Kyle passed the torch to Jennifer (Watson) Anderson back in the early 90's. Jennifer produced The Crook & Chase Countdown for over 15 years, and still works for the company on various projects including their website. T. Clark Miller took the reins in 2007, and continues to this day. (Fans of the Crook & Chase TV show in the 90's will remember T. He was often on camera, as the foil for Charlie's jokes!) And then there's Bennie Shipley, who has engineered The Countdown practically from day one, keeping pace with the ever-changing technologies. When he first started working on the show, he spliced tape to make edits and the program was supplied to radio stations on record albums! These days, The Countdown is edited solely on computers and our affiliates download the show digitally.
There was a large contingent on hand to celebrate with Crook & Chase. Our syndication partners, the Premiere Radio Networks team led by Julie Talbott, President of Premiere Radio Networks, were there in force. The aforementioned production team members were present, as was Jerry Fox, Director of Sales for Jim Owens Entertainment. Charlie invited Philip and Debbie Beal, owners of WRGS in Rogersville, TN as his special guests. Charlie got his start working for the Beal family at WRGS when he was just 13 years old!
Of course, family was a big part of the celebration as well. Charlie enjoyed the evening with his wife Karen, and their children Dave and Rachael along with their young families. Lorianne had as her guests her mom Winn, (who was a little miffed that Lorianne told everyone she was almost 80!), her brother Brett, and her husband Jim Owens, President of Jim Owens Entertainment and the man who launched Crook & Chase 30 years ago. Oh, and of course, we had cameras rolling!
What a wonderful evening it was. We wish to thank the CRB once again for the recognition. It truly is an honor to be a part of country radio, and while our television shows have undergone numerous hurdles and changes over the years, our Countdown show on radio has been a constant. For that, we thank our syndication partners over the years, and especially the hundreds of wonderful radio station programmers who have made Crook & Chase a part of their line-up. Most of all, though, we thank those of you who have tuned in to listen as we made our way to #1 each and every week on The Crook & Chase Countdown. It's something we hope we will continue to do for a very long time to come!
SEE MORE PICTURES HERE!
PHOTO CREDIT: ARISTOPR