The Country Network, a new country music station that hired former Country Music Assn. chief Tammy Genovese as its president, is counting on a wider playlist than its competitors, video-intensive programming and technological innovations to make it a force among the country music fan base.

TCN, which heralded a June 10 national debut when it announced Genovese's appointment, is teasing viewers with a countdown to launch at its homepage.

The countdown math now infers a new launch date of June 14.

The TCN site also offers an opportunity to view the station, which has been airing locally on a Montgomery, Ala., cable outlet. The programming is currently centered on videos and will be for some time as the network strives to establish itself as a viable alternative to entrenched channels CMT and GAC.

"We just feel like there's an open door for an additional avenue here with the Country Network to be able to probably play a little bit more, be more focused on the music," Genovese says. "They've totally turned into more of lifestyle [programming]. And you know what? We may, too, at some point. Right now this is our vision."

TCN aims to cast a wider artistic net, sprinkling a larger percentage of videos by heritage artists and newcomers amid clips by current acts.

"If it's a good-quality video and it's a great song, we're going to play it," Genovese says. "It's not that you've got to be on a label and it's got to be top 20. That's not going to be our criteria at all."

Chad Brock, who earned a No. 1 hit in Billboard in 2000 with "Yes!," is the PD for TCN. COO Warren Hansen, who co-founded the channel, stepped down from president to make room for Genovese on the staff.

The TCN website already claims 10 cable and satellite distributors, including Time-Warner and the Dish Network. The goal is to knit a constituency of local outlets that will allow TCN to help music companies and other potential advertisers pinpoint local markets with greater ease.

"If an artist happens to be touring in that market, we can sell local advertising there as opposed to everything being on the national footprint," Genovese says. "That's going to help us be able to open some doors."

Hansen is a tech-savvy executive, she adds, projecting that TCN will be able to sell product through the TV via remote control. The company already has an agreement to sell product via iTunes from its own site. And it intends to incorporate multiple tech platforms - including social media and mobile devices - in creating fan-generated programming content.

TCN opened its Nashville office last month in Reba McEntire's Starstruck Building on Music Row. Further staff announcements are expected in the coming weeks.

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