Oklahoma radio station backtracks after refusing to play Beyoncé’s country music

“We do not play Beyoncé on KYKC as we are a country music station,” they emailed a fan
February 14, 2024 12:34 p.m. EST
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Beyoncé is the queen of surprises, and so when she revealed during the Super Bowl that she was dropping not only a new album but also two new singles, the Beyhive lit up.  "16 Carriages" and "Texas Hold 'Em" are the tracks with a country music flare to them, but one Oklahoma music fan was shocked to find his local country music radio station was refusing to play her songs simply because she’s Beyoncé.


X user (formerly Twitter) who goes by @jussatto posted on Tuesday to the platform, “I requested Texas Hold ‘Em at my local country radio station (KYKC) and after requesting, i received an email from the radio station stating ‘We do not play Beyoncé on KYKC as we are a country music station.’”



In subsequent posts to the platform, the user stated, “This station needs to be held accountable for their blatant racism and discrimination against Beyoncé … . This is absolutely ridiculous and racist. You guys should be ashamed. I grew up listening to your station.”


The post quickly went viral with over 3.3 million views and over 5,000 reposts. It appears the Beyhive was successful in its campaign to educate the radio station, because not long after, KYKC posted to its official X feed that it had the “Break My Soul” singer in its rotation line up.



“Lots of calls coming in for Beyoncé’s Texas Hold ‘Em. It’s coming up in minutes,” the radio station posted to X. 


Later in an email to TODAY, the radio station confirmed the email sent to the listener was real but wanted to clarify that the initial decision wasn’t based on racism but on the small size of the station. 


"We initially refused to play it in the same manner if someone requested us to play the Rolling Stones on our country station," general manager Roger Harris told TODAY. "Fact is we play Beyonce’ on TWO of our other stations and love her...she is an icon. We just didn’t know about the song....then when we found out about it, we tried to get the song....which we did and we have already played it 3 times on YKC, our country station. We also play her on 105.5, KXFC-FM and KADA-FM 0n 99.3.”


He continued, "We are not a 'big boy' station and getting record companies to service us is tough. But...finally we got our hands on it, and based on the fan support, we decided to air it...truthfully, normally we would (usually) wait a while to see how the song performs on the charts and on bigger country stations than ours, as we are just the little guys." 


While the radio station tries to mitigate any accusations of racism, Complex points out that country music stations and charts have long excluded Black artists, noting that Lil Nas X faced the same kind of treatment after “Old Town Road” was released.


Music fans, meanwhile, are warning KYKC not to pull this kind of stunt again, lest they be subject to the Beyhive’s wrath.


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