Press Releases & Blog

The Planet Country Story - Part I: Getting In To Country

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on October 31, 2018 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

We often discuss this in parts on the show but have never really recorded the full history of the show and ourselves. I thought I should finally put pen to paper... or is that keyboard to screen? and tell you all how Big Stu and I got in to country and how Planet Country came to be.

This is Part I, how we got in to country music and the lead up to our first show on air.

It started back around 2010-ish. I was in the middle of high school and Big Stu, my dad*, was obsessed with camping.

*Its surprising how many don't realise he is my dad. I mean we look alike and sound a like. Plus I'm more than half his age.

On our way home from a camping adventure either up the coast or the down the coast (there are only two types of holidays in Australia! You're either going up... or going down!) and the family stopped off at a small cafe or bakery of some sorts in a small town along the journey home. There my dad spotted a poster for CMC Rocks The Snowy's.

Always with an interest in music, my dad was curios to see what all the fuss was about with country music and the CMC channel on Foxtel. He was vaguely aware that country music had evolved since the days of Slim, Foster & Allen and all the country & WESTERN! artists my grandmother to this day won't stop playing.

Upon our return home he flicked on Foxtel and found CMC in the electronic tv guide. Then for the next two years I was subjected to torture!
That's right, I was not a country fan at first.

You see at the time CMC was much heavier on the traditional and Australiana sound. As a prodiminately classic rock fan trying to keep up with the latest pop or hip-hop trends that my classmates enjoyed, I just couldn't get into the country sound or lyrics. There were a few exceptions: Brad Paisley, Trace Adkins*, Big & Rich and of course Keith Urban! To me there was nothing else like them being played on CMC at the time.

*Honkey Tonk Badonkadonk. That is all. I was a teenage boy and that music video was perfection.

In fairness to Tim and the team behind CMC, the industry itself was on the verge of an even bigger revolution. A new sound had just been popularised in the US and had set sail for Australia. The sound I was looking for, that belonged alongside the few artists mentioned above, was out there and on its way. Until it arrived Big Stu would continuesly put CMC on and listen along. Unless Keith came on the family was pretty much uninterested. Big Stu was looking for a new sound to get into but hadn't quite found it yet. There were a few stand out artists that were in regular rotation that I too enjoyed. My first country gig was Victoria Bailey and later followed by Kaylens Rain and The McClymonts. I really enjoyed the gigs and the music but I wasn't yet ready to call myself a country fan. Big Stu was looking for a new sound, I was supporting my Dad's new interest. In a funny twist of fate, New Country was discovered through me and this will sound cliche but the sound literally found me!

Very late one night a couple of years after Big Stu saw that poster, early 2013 to be exact, I was on my phone listening to music. I had a student budget so free streaming on Pandora was the go. All I could do was tell it to play songs from and similar to Brad Paisley. So that's what I told it to do.

A few songs into the 'Brad Paisley' radio playlist, something completely different caught my ear. It was 'Cruise' by Florida Georgia Line. Back then it was brand new and had just started to go viral on radio in America. As soon as I heard it I was hooked, it was the perfect sound to bring me into country music. A sound that was the perfect blend of country and the rock I was familiar with and had lyrics that a young man could relate to and party to.

I don't remember how I fell asleep that night but I know it was very late. I stayed up listening to more and more songs like Cruise after telling Pandora to play their Florida Georgia Line radio playlists. I think my mental music library grew by 100 songs or more that night. At the same time I was jumping over to YouTube and playing Cruise a million more times.

As soon as I woke up the next day (probably in the afternoon), I raced to the other side of the house where Big Stu was working on his computer. I think I said something like 'hey you need to listen to this new song' and that was it. I plugged me phone into a set of speakers we had and started playing Cruise on the YouTube app. Big Stu looked straight up at me with a huge smile and was instantly blown away by the sound.

I think he said something like "This is country!".

For all you New Country-haters out there, noticed the exclimation mark not a question mark!

Like myself during the night, my Dad was instantly hooked by this song. I went on to play a few more songs I had heard and he knew I found what he was looking for when he first saw that CMC Rocks The Snowy's poster years before.

Throughout the year we kept discovering more and more songs like Cruise. Some had been out for a while, Eric Church's Springstein for example. Others had been released not long after I first heard Cruise. We were country fans.... albeit not proudly.

The new sound was still on its way to Australia. CMC was slowly picking up the songs were had already been jamming to. We started to see Cruise, Springstein and a few others but everytime we turned on the channel we knew we would have to sit and wait through 5 to 10 songs before hearing the new sound we liked. Interestingly, I observed my Dad's curiosity and interest in what was being played on CMC quickly turn to frustration as what he wanted to see wasn't being played.

We quickly discovered local media was either too slow to pick up this new sound or was flat out ignoring it. This pushed us to look elsewhere. Sparked by the question 'what are we missing out on?', I begun streaming American country music radio. Eventually discovering 93.5 The Wolf in Evansville, Indiana.

Big Stu and I would stream this station non-stop. Hearing new releases and recent hits that fit this new sound. Most importantly we discovered the new sound had a name, 93.5 The Wolf had a clear format: New Country.

By 2014 we had found ourselves on a mission, to bring New Country to Australia. We had seen on CMC that we had New Country artists in Australia but no media outlet to fully support them. In the next part of this series I will share how Big Stu and I created Planet Country and got started in radio, the later dating back to before I was born.

Part II: Launching On Radio - Coming soon.

Matthew 'MJ' Brokenbrough
Co-everything and a whole lot more at Planet Country radio show.

Press Release: Hawkesbury Gold 89.9 FM

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on June 25, 2018 at 2:15 AM Comments comments (1)

Press Release -  For Immediate Release

From 25th June 2018, radio station Hawkesbury Gold will be syndicating the full 2 hour Planet Country every Tuesday from 4pm local time.

Hawkesbury Gold will air a full replay of the live show from the night before. Hawkesbury Gold broadcasts to 89.9 FM to Windsor and the Hawkesbury region.


Press Release: Big Stu to present a 2nd show!

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on April 10, 2018 at 2:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Press Release - For Immediate Release

Planet Country with Big Stu and MJ are excited to announce a 2nd show: Big Stu's Country Universe!

Following Planet Country moving to SWR Triple 9, Big Stu will launch a new spinoff program to air in the original timeslot.

The program focusses more on the latest news and gossip in New Country along with new music.

Retaining the original timeslot meant listeners used to tuning in on Thursday nights will still hear New Country on the radio. It also provides an opportunity for Big Stu to put new releases to air quicker as apposed to waiting until the one show night.

Big Stu's Country Universe airs every Thursday live 6pm to 7pm local time from the studios of Alive 90.5 on 90.5 FM in Parramatta, Sydney's Hills and surrounding suburbs.

The Wolf Australia, who syndicate Planet Country live and replayed, will pick up Country Universe and air it live as well as replayed on Sundays from 1pm.


Press Release: New Time, New Station, Longer Show!

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on April 6, 2018 at 2:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Press Release - For Immediate Release

During last night's 200th edition of Planet Country, hosts Big Stu and MJ announced a new chapter in the show history.

From next Monday, April 9th, Planet Country will change to a new time, on a new station, at a new studio and air for two hours!

Due to MJ's commitment to studying at the Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS), where he has a fortnightly Thursday night class, Big Stu and MJ have decided to find a new, more suitable time to present the show live.

Planet Country will now air on Monday nights live 6pm to 8pm from the studios of SWR Triple 9 and broadcasting on 99.9 FM in Western Sydney.

The Wolf Australia will continue to syndicate the program live at the new time along with new replay times on Wednesdays (7pm) and Saturdays (1pm).


Are Kelsea Ballerini & Morgan Evans a Thing? We Ship Korgan!

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on April 11, 2016 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (0)

US New Country star on the rise Kelsea Ballerini has shared some interesting photos in her Snapstory on Snapchat that have led many of her Australian fans to believe she has found a man who will love her like he means it... sorry, we had to. 

Ballerini updated her Snapstory to include a quick video of herself co-hosting the CMC Awards with Australian country music star Morgan Evans and followed it up with some cheeky shots from a wedding she was attending. To the surprise of many, the Nashville-based Aussie had joined her.

Now, the idea of the pair becoming friends wasn't hard to picture for our Big Stu & MJ, having noticed a distinct flair when interviewing the duo on the CMC Awards red carpet last month. The pair had both performed at the Snowy Mountains Country Music Festival and were set to co-host the awards program in front of a live national audiance.

Little did we know Kelsea had called Dibs! The Aussie heartthrob planted a kiss on the recent ACM Award winner just in time for a Snap. A follow up post in her Snapstory shows the artists once again looking deeply into each others' sparkly eyes. We wish Kelsea and Morgan - Korgan - all the best! We hope to catch up again soon.

Hear what Morgan and Kelsea had to say about co-hosting the CMC Awards on this week's edition of Planet Country with Big Stu & MJ - Australia's Home of New Country! Details to be posted on our facebook page here.

Written by MJ, edited by Jazz

For more, follow Planet Country on Social Media!
Facebook Snapchat Instagram Twitter

Sponsorship Renewal Is A Snap

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on March 8, 2016 at 12:05 AM Comments comments (0)

[Planet Country] Radio Show received a boost on the eve of their historic coverage of the CMC Awards Red Carpet and CMC Rocks QLD Festival, with existing sponsor Snap Print Design Website Castle Hill and St. Leonards renewing their sponsorship agreement for a further period.


The team at Snap, led by franchisee Noel Kelly signed on as program and station sponsor in 2015 just as [Planet Country] signed an agreement as media partner for the Sydney Country Music Festival. Mr. Kelly believes as a local franchise business owner, it is highly worthwhile to support local media including Alive 90.5 FM and a dynamic program such as [Planet Country]. “I listen to the boys show on a Thursday night travelling between the two stores and I really enjoy the modern country music they play” said Mr. Kelly, adding “I think it is fantastic that they are growing their listenership and embracing social media and I am delighted for Snap Castle Hill and St. Leonards to offer our support and encouragement”.


ABOVE: Staff at Snap Castle Hill present Planet Country with their custom Instagram Board for Sydney CMF on Halloween.

Speaking on behalf of [Planet Country], co-host Big Stu said he was thrilled to have Snap continue their association; “Local business sponsorship is the lifeblood of local media organisations and when major brands such as Snap Print Design and Web Sites become involved through a franchisee it allows the station to present high quality programming. In our case, Snap’s support has been a huge boost for [Planet Country] and it’s heartening that as we grow, they want to continue to be part of what we are creating. We are very thankful to Noel, Mitch, Oliver and the team.”

ABOVE: Mitch from Snap Castle Hill with Big Stu

The agreement takes effect immediately and will include the [Planet Country] coverage of the CMC Awards Red Carpet on Thursday 10th March and the CMC Rocks QLD Festival, Friday 11th to Sunday 14th March. Follow Big Stu and MJ on social media.

 Contact Planet Country today to see how your business or brand can benefit from sponsoring Planet Country!

Welcome to New Country.

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on May 15, 2014 at 12:40 AM

Welcome to New Country.


Forget everything you thought about country music. Times have changed and so has country.

Modern country music can be considered so far from the traditional notion of a rural lifestyle that the line between musical genres gets blurred, leaving listeners to consider the style and substance beyond simplistic stereotypes.


The reality is that country is listened to by farmers in the bush and bank managers in the city. It isn’t simply a case of the city dwellers longing for the rural pace either. The music conveys more than a message about billabongs and dirt roads. Rather, it’s real emotions and real issues affecting everyone that forms the basis for many songs.


Country is about escapism. Whether you need to be lifted up because you have faced adversity or whether you are mending a broken heart - yes, the cliché about country music and break-up songs might be real, but so what? It works for Taylor Swift - and haven’t we all been there? But for every song about a girl, there are others about trucks, drinks, tattoos and partying. It’s a rich tapestry!


For a city dweller, enjoying country music is about a state of mind. The misconception is that everyone stuck in the city must be yearning to leave for a better life in the bush. The reality is that anyone (regardless of their location) can identify with the themes - and the music isn’t bad either.


Some of the best guitar players in the world belong to the country genre. Some of the loudest drumming can be heard at country concerts. Yes its true there may be banjos, but it’s OK, they’re electric and they rock!


The genre bending is gathering pace. There are many country artists in America who have collaborated with artists from other genres, including rap and pop. The resulting hits have topped the charts in both country and mainstream (all genre) charts, ensuring record companies continue to promote these get-togethers. Australian artists are a bit slow to participate in genre bending, with just a few examples to date but watch this space…


Media plays a part in growing modern country music, and in Australia there are many radio stations playing mixed country music, meaning you might hear a traditional country song alongside a song featuring a rap artist and a country artist. The result is a mismatch of styles and sometimes it leaves the listeners unhappy. Many traditional country fans aren’t so accepting of the new sound - and let’s face it, if we are trying to gain new (read young) listeners to country music, they aren’t going to hang around listening to a radio station that plays John Williamson straight after Florida Georgia Line featuring Nelly.


Now there is a radio program dedicated to ‘New Country’ focusing on promoting modern music and genre bending collaborations. The tag line says it all…



Music Like You’ve Never Heard. This is Planet Country.


Sneak Peek: Our hosts talk Rock Star Wishes and Facebook Fans

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on May 6, 2014 at 11:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Listen to a "sneak peek" at the type of hard hitting discussions that will take place on Planet Country Radio Show.

Our hosts Big Stu and MJ talk rock star wishes and Facebook fans!

Music Promo - What will listeners hear on Planet Country?

Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on April 28, 2014 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

From Nashville to Tamworth, country rock to country pop - [PLANET COUNTRY] plays all things NEW COUNTRY! We play what's trending, chart topping and all the best music you've never heard... until now.

Heres a teaser of the type of music you will hear on the new Planet Country Radio Show:


Posted by The Wolf Radio: Planet Country Radio Show on April 27, 2014 at 8:40 AM Comments comments (0)

With the show set to go live to air in the near future, a radio ad has been produced for the show.

Check out: