According to the Feb. 28, Wall Street Journal, “More Americans called country their favorite kind of music than classic rock or any other genre in a recent survey by NPD Group.”.
Now some European concert promoters hope the love for the “made in America” sound can be transported across the seas to fill arenas and concert halls in cities across Europe.
Anschutz Entertainment Group is banking on Brits to love the Nashville sound as they bring country music acts to the two-day Country to Country festival at London's 20,000-seat O2 arena.
German concert promoter, Oskar Hoppe who has worked with Bon Jovi, U2 and Lady Gaga, told the WSJ, "Country music is now very, very popular. We think it has a chance in Germany."
And the Country Music Association is onboard; recently hiring its first director of international relations, now based in London.
There is still a lot of uncertainty, however. “Touring outside of North America is notoriously expensive, and given the kind of money country artists can make closer to home, taking younger acts abroad hasn't been a priority for the genre,” the WSJ reports.
According to Bobbi Boyce, the CMA's director of international relations, social media and networking sites are mostly responsible for the revival of the music genre in Europe since it’s decline in the late 1990s. “Recently,” the WSJ says, “...country music fan pages have popped up online from places as far-flung as Greece, Uruguay and Sri Lanka.”
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