Trisha Yearwood Says Women Are ‘Getting The Raw End Of The Deal’ On Country Radio

Women saw some big wins at the Grammy Awards this year, including the album of the year honor for country singer-songwriter Kacey Musgraves. But there are still some glaring omissions in the industry, specifically when it comes to country radio and female artists. 

This week, for example, only three women appear in the top 25 on Billboard’s Hot Country song chart — an indication the genre is still dominated by men. And winning a Grammy doesn’t necessarily transform into radio airplay. 

Trisha Yearwood, for one, is fully aware of how the industry works. She got her start in country music in the early 1990s, and although she has had hits through the years and has appreciated her time on radio, she sees how women are often left off traditional airwaves. In a recent interview at Build Series, she said she thinks “women are still absolutely getting the raw end of the deal at country radio.” She blames it partly on “old, antiquated ways of thinking.”

“I want to go, ‘Who says that’s the way it is?’ Like, you don’t play two female artists back to back and you make sure you play four guys before you play a girl? Like, whose rules are those?” 

Trisha Yearwood is out with a new album, "Let's Be Frank."

Build Series/Noam Galai

Trisha Yearwood is out with a new album, “Let’s Be Frank.”

Yearwood, though, predicts the tide may soon turn for radio programmers. 

“I think they are about to get a rude awakening, because women are rising up. We’re going to start marching to your radio station, and you’re going to be afraid not to play our records, I think. I would do that march!” she said, imagining what it would look like. “There are 20 angry women in the parking lot. Let’s play some Trisha Yearwood. I feel like it could happen!”

She said people need to take action ― not just talk ― to make some real change. “Everybody says, ‘This is what we want.’ But you gotta really do it,” she said.

Still, Yearwood was thrilled to see Musgraves swoop up four honors at the Grammys: album of the year and best country album for “Golden Hour,” best country song for “Space Cowboy” and best country solo performance for “Butterflies.” 

Kacey Musgraves won album of the year and three other prizes at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Feb. 10, but the genre is

CBS Photo Archive via Getty Images

Kacey Musgraves won album of the year and three other prizes at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Feb. 10, but the genre is still dominated by men.

“Her album was one that she purely made because she’s saying, ‘I’m an artist. This is what I want to say.’ I don’t think she was concerned about all the things that come up after you make the record. We have to be. We’re marketing. We want to sell records,” Yearwood said. “But if you’re going to call yourself an artist, your first love, your first priority has to be making sure you take care of that music and do what you feel in your heart and you hope you’re going to connect with somebody out there. … So I think that’s what Kacey did with the record, and I think that’s why she’s being recognized. People can tell when you follow your heart.”

Follow her heart is something Yearwood has aimed to do since the start of her career. She landed her first No. 1 country single in 1991 with “She’s in Love With the Boy” and has been a force on the country music scene ever since. These days, though, she doesn’t try to put too much pressure on herself. She said she has Garth Brooks to thank for that.

Yearwood and Garth Brooks collaborated on a new song, "For the Last Time," which appears on "Let's Be Frank."

Michael Kovac via Getty Images

Yearwood and Garth Brooks collaborated on a new song, “For the Last Time,” which appears on “Let’s Be Frank.”

“I have to credit my husband with that because I am competitive,” Yearwood revealed. “I’m always analyzing myself and my career and everything I’m doing. And he’s the one who said, ‘You need to realize you don’t have to prove anything to anybody. Just do you.’ And that’s what I needed to hear. … It doesn’t mean you don’t want those things. I want to have a No. 1 record on the radio. I want to sell records. I want to be successful currently. I don’t want to be just known for what I did and what I’ve done. But at the same time, I’m good.”

Good enough that she just released an album mostly of songs recorded by Frank Sinatra, one of her musical heroes. Called “Let’s Be Frank,” the collection finds her doing versions of standards, including “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and “Come Fly With Me.” It is her first full-length release since 2007 ― and it won’t be her last. She recently recorded a country album featuring a batch of new songs largely written or co-written by women. 

“I’m not chasing anything. I’m not trying to be some trendy things. I think when you hear this record, you’ll go, ‘Oh, this is Trisha,’” she said about the album, expected out this fall. “I don’t know if it’s the freedom of being 54 and life is too short. I’m just going to have fun and do what I want to do.” 

Check out the full Build interview with Yearwood below. 

Mandy Moore Ready To Return To Music Following Ryan Adams Allegations

According to People, Moore said she would be recording new music ― which she has written with husband Taylor Goldsmith ― when “This Is Us” goes on hiatus.

“We have things written, ready to go,” she said. “Our hiatus starts soon, so I’m getting ready to go in the studio.”

Speaking to The New York Times, Moore said that “music was a point of control” in her marriage to the musician, which lasted from 2009 to 2016. She said she considered him psychologically abusive and that he hindered her musical career.

“I want to make music,” she said. “I’m not going to let Ryan stop me.”

“Music is a constant theme in my life,” she told Glamour in 2017. “It has been for the past eight years. I’ve just gotta navigate my way back to it.”

Miley Cyrus Is ‘Freaking Out’ Over ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Guest Judge Gig

After 10 wig-and-spike-heeled seasons, “RuPaul’s Drag Race” still has a few surprises in store ― and one of them is none other than Miley Cyrus

Cyrus will appear as a guest judge on the reality competition show’s Season 11 premiere, set to air Feb. 28 on VH1. The participation of the singer and actress was confirmed Tuesday in a colorful teaser video. 

“Are you freaking out? Because I’m freaking out,” Cyrus says in the clip, above. 

The star hinted at her “Drag Race” appearance earlier Tuesday with a quirky Instagram post.  

Later in the day, she offered a behind-the-scenes peek at her forthcoming appearance with a short dressing room video. 

The announcement comes just two days after Cyrus reminded audiences of her musical prowess at the 2019 Grammy Awards with well-received performances alongside Shawn Mendes and Dolly Parton, her godmother

On Monday, she strolled the red carpet at the Los Angeles premiere of “Isn’t It Romantic,” a new comedy starring her husband, Liam Hemsworth, and Rebel Wilson. (Hemsworth himself was unable to attend due to illness.) 

Of course, Cyrus’ “Drag Race” appearance is particularly appropriate, given that the star ― who identifies as pansexual and sports a marriage equality tattoo ― has emerged as a staunch LGBTQ rights advocate. 

“There are times in my life where I’ve had boyfriends or girlfriends,” she told Time magazine in 2015. “And there are times where I just love being with myself and don’t want to give part of myself away to someone else … I think that’s a new freedom for women, especially.” 

That same year, she released the song “Hands of Love” for the film “Freeheld,” which starred Julianne Moore and Ellen Page as real-life lesbian couple Laurel Hester and Stacie Andree, who fought for legal recognition in New Jersey in 2006, seven years before the state legalized same-sex marriage. 

ConDRAGulations, Miley! 

Rebel Wilson Tells Ellen DeGeneres She Didn’t Expect Liam Hemsworth To Be Funny

Rebel Wilson said she had a ball cozying up to Liam Hemsworth for her new movie, “Isn’t It Romantic,” but working alongside the heartthrob yielded some surprises along the way, too. 

The “Pitch Perfect” and “Bridesmaids” star dropped by “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” Tuesday, where she admitted to having some early reservations about co-starring with Hemsworth in the romantic comedy spoof.

“Normally, people that are so hot like that aren’t that funny,” said Wilson, who also co-produced the film. “Turns out, he’s just such a legend and the funniest guy, so it was a good move for me casting him.” 

Filming the movie’s intentionally campy musical sequences, however, was a different story. Though Hemsworth wasn’t the best when it came to learning choreography, “he really just gave it his all,” Wilson explained. 

The Aussie-born actress’ own dancing skills are on full display in “Isn’t It Romantic,” which hits theaters Wednesday, and are likely to come in handy once again in the big-screen adaptation of the Broadway musical “Cats,” currently filming in London. 

“It’s pretty interesting to be a cat all day,” she said of the film, which also stars Judi Dench, Idris Elba, James Corden and Taylor Swift. “We do have to go to cat school, though, which is where we all just pretend to be cats together.” 

The physicality of the role, however, prevented Wilson from enjoying a recent skiing trip to Aspen, Colorado, to its fullest. In fact, she said she opted for a “medical rescue” as opposed to making her way down the slope.  

George Clooney Warns Ominously That Meghan Markle Is Like Princess Diana

George Clooney blasted what he described as “irresponsible” treatment of the Duchess of Sussex and warned that the consequences could be serious. Much of his ire seemed to be directed at journalists.

“I do want to say, they’re just chasing Meghan Markle everywhere,” he told Australia’s Who Magazine on Tuesday. “She’s been pursued and vilified.”

The actor, who attended Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry with his wife, Amal Clooney, added, “She’s a woman who is seven months pregnant and she has been pursued and vilified and chased in the same way that Diana was and it’s history repeating itself.”

Striking an ominous tone, the “Catch-22” star said, “We’ve seen how that ends.” Clooney was presumably referring to Princess Diana’s death in a car crash while being chased by paparazzi in 1997.

Other defenders of Meghan have recently highlighted the rash of stories that nit-pick her public appearances, tell tales about her alleged misbehavior within the royal family and report on the ongoing efforts of her father and sister to badmouth her.

Luxembourg’s Princess Tessy tweeted earlier about online attacks against Meghan: “Stay Kind!!! it’s the new cool! She does not deserve that.” Last week an anonymous band of the royal’s friends urged an end to “global bullying” of the duchess.

Clooney specifically slammed media reports that revealed the contents of a letter Meghan had written to her estranged father. (Thomas Markle shared the message with the Daily Mail.) Meghan told her dad that he was “turning a blind eye to the pain” he was causing her.

“I can’t tell you how frustrating that is, just seeing them broadcast a letter from a daughter to a father,” Clooney said. “She’s getting a raw deal there and I think it’s irresponsible and I’m surprised by that.”

16 Lovely Quotes About Motherhood From Laura Dern

Laura Dern knows the highs and lows of being a parent.

The actress and her ex-husband, Ben Harper, have a son and daughter, Ellery and Jaya. Since becoming a mother in 2001, Dern has been open about her experiences navigating parenthood ― from her social media rules to her children’s influence on her political values.

In honor of her birthday, here are 16 parenting quotes from Dern.

On Figuring Out Parenting

“Motherhood is the greatest experience, but very humbling. I mean, talk about not knowing how to do anything! I learn more every day. I am not strict; I need to learn how to get strict. The value that most of us wish for our children is that they will walk through life with integrity, listening to their truest self. And that’s what it boils down to, because you don’t know what life is going to offer you or what the world is going to look like in 10 years.”

On Being Inspired By Her Daughter

“I’m deeply invested in our country and our moral obligations to the well-being of other families, and she’s teaching me what’s happening in the world in a really profound way.”

On Celebrating Mother’s Day With Her Village

“I reached out to all of the moms at my kids’ school who I know help raise my kids, and said, ‘Let’s all have a meal together so that we can thank each other, because we know that we can never do it alone.’ My son has spent the night for four days, while I’m here in New York doing press, with other moms. … It takes a village.”

On Social Media

“I’ve created limits that I think are important so they’re not flooded, and my daughter’s not happy about them. Now it’s a popularity issue of who’s on social media and who isn’t, and so we just engage in really deep conversations about why I think certain things are too much and why I think certain things create opportunity. We have Instagram on my phone, which we utilize and have fun with and talk about. It’s like, ‘OK, that’s cool pop culture. I understand why you want to follow that person, so what’s a cause that you can follow at the same time? For that pop culture person, let’s also follow Greenpeace.’”

Ellery (left) was born in 2001 and Jaya (right) in 2004.

Barry King via Getty Images

Ellery (left) was born in 2001 and Jaya (right) in 2004.

On How Parenthood Changed Her

“But I would say that the beginning of motherhood, for me and a lot of women I’ve spoken to, feels like, how am I going to do this ‘other thing’ called motherhood, as we’re busy finding our own lives? But with some time it starts to integrate, until every thought you have is, how am I going to do this as a parent, or for my or with my children? And, how am I going to be of service as a parent? Your life shifts instantaneously. I was always an activist. I cared deeply about environmental health, particularly for families and children, but then you become a parent, and it’s not that your priorities shift; it’s the amount of intent starts to shift in a really interesting way.”

On Her Divorce

“My kids are doing great. And in a way their living situation is not shockingly different ― in that their father is a touring musician so they were used to the comings and goings a bit ― not to say there aren’t a lot of other things. But, like me, they never really knew a mom and dad sitting down at the table for dinner every night. So I think that creates an easier transition.”

On Sharing Her Son’s Health Crisis

“[Jimmy Kimmel] inspired me to then get on my Instagram and share that my son had a surgery at birth and it was life-threatening and we were in terror. I was sitting in rooms with families who didn’t have as much ease knowing if they could get health care or not. … Every single child in this country deserves health care. That is not a partisan issue. Everyone deserves a healthy planet. That is not a political issue. For our children and our environment, we are one family. And we are one click away from sharing our story and making a difference. That? That’s a blessing.”

On Raising Her Kids As They Grow Up

“It’s easier and harder. Every age brings something new. As I’ve been told by friends who have kids in their 30s — they’ve said to me, ‘Oh my God, I’ve never been so involved with my kids’ lives as I am now.’ So it shifts with every turn in their lives, and it’s the greatest blessing in the world. … To get to worry about things like how they’re doing in the classroom and not wanting them to be bullied — those are good problems to have, relatively speaking.”

Dern with her children and mother, Diane Ladd, in 2017. 

Neilson Barnard via Getty Images

Dern with her children and mother, Diane Ladd, in 2017. 

On Modeling Womanhood For Her Daughter

“I feel like Jaya’s modeling to me more than I’m modeling to her most of the time. … [Around the election,] it was amazing to watch [her] generation, particularly girls, want to become involved. It is oddly a very exciting time, as a mother, to watch a generation of girls feel empowered in a way that we weren’t even.”

On The Country She Sees For Her Children

“I focus on what I’ve decided is this country and the country that I describe to my children. And there are very few things that seem clear, but there is zero tolerance for a few things, because we’re Americans, and we’re clear about a few things: Nazis, racists, people who denounce people based on their cultural or religious or sexual preference ― like that doesn’t fly in this country. Our grandparents and great-grandparents have worked too hard to get us here. So I am continuing to tell my children the story that is what this country is built upon, and there have been some mistakes where there are a rare few who don’t understand. And we don’t have to have compassion for their ignorance, but we can acknowledge it, and we’ve just got to keep using our voice.”

On What Kids Learn About Relationships

“I don’t think kids expect the fairytale anymore, either. Most couples don’t hide that they fight from their children, whereas in our parents’ generation you hid everything. A therapist would now tell you that it’s good to fight in front of them as long as they can see the resolution. This is being human ― you get angry, you get hurt, you yell and say things you don’t mean ― and then you circle back and you’re accountable. Otherwise kids hit adulthood and they don’t know how to deal with conflict.”

On Acting In A Film About Child Sexual Abuse

“I have to say it does make you incredibly paranoid, and I was already paranoid. It strikes a chord in how we want to protect and be the champion for kids to know their own boundaries and to honor themselves.”

Dern with her kids and father, Bruce Dern, in 2015. 

Steve Granitz via Getty Images

Dern with her kids and father, Bruce Dern, in 2015. 

On 21st-Century Parenting

“In our parents’ generation, children were supposed to be seen and not heard ― condescend to children, make them feel small, you’re the grown-up, and they have to be in their place. Now we’re being supported to raise children as though they are our peers, to not condescend ― progressive parenting.”

On Her Message To Her Daughter

“You will succeed and fail in equal measure. Both experiences are worthwhile. They will both define you. The truth is, the minute I surrendered to the flow of the mess of life, everything came together magnificently: my longing for art, my skill as an actor, and my capacities as a friend and mother. The beauty of being a woman today is in savoring the minutiae of life, all the moments that add up to you. The joy you’ll find in being in your body, in sexuality and sensuality, in service, in art, in mothering. You have to get out of your own way and write your own story ― and not be forced into the narrative that you think will give you the easiest path to success or the most likes. I want you to live in the space that’s your own, your own delicious mess. The story comes from within you.”

On Building Her Family

“There’s nothing more important than my kids. It’s great getting to know their DNA, and all the options that are afforded to them because of their DNA, through my family and their dad and his family. My son has suddenly become an amazing runner and my dad was a runner. That was originally going to be his profession. I think it’s so fascinating that we have these gifts from our families. The way my son gets amused about things and uses his hands are so his grandpa, and that fascinates me. I am so moved by family.”

On The Joy Her Children Bring

“The best time I can ever have is with my kids because no one makes me laugh harder.”

Ellen Page Calls Out Chris Pratt for Supporting ‘Infamously Anti-LGBTQ Church’

Actress and activist Ellen Page is calling out fellow celebrity Chris Pratt for attending an “infamously” anti-LGBTQ church.

Page pointed out that Pratt, who spoke about his church on the “Late Show” Thursday night, didn’t mention that it doesn’t appear to be affirming of queer relationships. 

Pratt and a number of other Christian celebrities ― Justin and Hailey Bieber, Kylie and Kendall Jenner, Selena Gomez ― have become closely associated with hip, youth-oriented evangelical churches like Hillsong, a megachurch with locations around the world, and Zoe Church, a newer Los Angeles-based church that was modeled after Hillsong

Pratt is reportedly an attendee at Zoe. In a 2017 Instagram post, he referred to Zoe’s founder, Chad Veach, as “my pastor” while promoting one of Veach’s books. Pratt has also been spotted at Hillsong services.

While churches like Zoe and Hillsong often claim to be welcoming of LGBTQ people, ultimately many still hold conservative Christian views about marriage ― meaning they do not support queer relationships or same-sex marriages.

In an early morning tweet on Friday, Page wrote that “his church is infamously anti lgbtq so maybe address that too?”

Page came out as gay in 2014 and married her partner, dancer and choreographer Emma Portner, in a private ceremony last year. Page has often used her public platform to defend LGBTQ rights.

On the “Late Show,” Pratt told host Stephen Colbert he had recently completed the “Daniel fast,” a 21-day fast inspired by the biblical prophet Daniel. The fast requires participants to abstain from meat, sugar, alcohol and other foods, while committing to spend more time in prayer. 

Pratt said he did the fast “through my church” and that he was “inspired by my pastor.” 

“It’s kind of like our Lent; we give something up,” Pratt said on “The Late Show,” referring to a period of fasting and self-reflection that some Christian churches observe before Easter. 

According to its website and Instagram, Zoe Church held 21 days of fasting and prayer this January.

Chris Pratt spoke about completing a "Daniel fast" on "The Late Show" Thursday.

Lorenzo Bevilaqua via Getty Images

Chris Pratt spoke about completing a “Daniel fast” on “The Late Show” Thursday.

Zoe Church is part of a wave of evangelical churches known for their casual, concert-style worship services and Instagram-influential preachers. Zoe opened in 2015 and since then has attracted the attentions of celebrities like Justin Bieber.

In an interview with The New York Times last year, Veach said that he doesn’t like to “bring politics into church.” 

“We’re here to preach good news. We’re here to bring hope to humanity. We’re here to talk about God. This is not the place for a political agenda,” Veach said. “This is the last place. When I come to church, you know what I need? I need encouragement.”

But in 2017, Veach served as executive producer for “The Heart Of Man,” a film that hoped to help people heal from “personal and sexual brokenness,” including, according to the Gospel Herald, “same-sex attraction.” It featured an interview with Jackie Hill Perry, an ex-lesbian Christian writer who is now married to a man. Perry has sparked controversy in the past for urging queer Christians to leave same-sex relationships out of a sense of duty to God. 

Zoe’s official stance on LGBTQ issues is unclear, according to Church Clarity, a crowd-sourced database that scores churches based on how clearly they communicate their policies on LGBTQ people and on women in leadership.

Pastor Chad Veach is the founder of Zoe Church.

Matt Winkelmeyer via Getty Images

Pastor Chad Veach is the founder of Zoe Church.

George Mekhail, one of Church Clarity’s founders, told HuffPost he suspects that the ambiguity some conservative Christian churches have around their LGBTQ policies could be intentional.

“We try to assume the best, but once churches are made aware of the fact that being ambiguous is misleading, it’s difficult to continue extending the benefit of the doubt,” Mekhail told HuffPost in an email. “So yes, it often appears intentional, but motivations as to why are trickier.”

“Is it because they want to lure them into their trap to attempt to convert them? Is it because admitting they enforced non-affirming policies would cost them financially? Probably a combination of these two reasons.”

Zoe Church did not immediately return a request for comment.

Hillsong’s views on LGBTQ issues also aren’t immediately apparent on its website. But its founder, Brian Houston, has often made statements against same-sex marriage. He’s also said that gay people are not allowed to take active leadership roles at Hillsong.

Mekhail told HuffPost that when people hear that their favorite celebrities go to a specific church, he believes it reinforces the assumption that these churches are more progressive than they are in reality. 

Mekhail and his team at Church Clarity are pushing for more churches to be upfront about their stances on LGBTQ issues and clearly state whether they will ordain, hire, or marry LGBTQ Christians. If a church does not do those things, Church Clarity considers it to be “non-affirming.”

“We are trying to emphasize clarity of policy over content of policy, by exposing how churches react to simple questions reveals questionable motivations and a desire to obfuscate the truth,” he said.

So far, the site has evaluated about 1,520 congregations, predominantly in the U.S.

Mekhail thinks celebrities will also face pressure to clarify their association with evangelical churches that are non-affirming. 

“Ellen Page is my new hero, tbh,” he told HuffPost. “I certainly hope that voices like Ellen will also resonate with the message of clarity being an effective way to cut through the noise.”