For press inquiries, please contact Liz Mayo.

The Undefeated

An entire cottage industry has exploded to get sonically diverse country music to the exiled country tribes that want it. Rissi Palmer’s Color Me Country and Kelly McCartney’s Southern Craft Radio and Record Bin Radio — all on Apple Music — showcase radical reclamations of country music’s whiteout. They feature Black, Indigenous, Latinx, queer, feminist musicians and music building a progressive sonic repertoire. The Black Opry nurtures young Black country musicians the way Atlanta’s Bankhead area nurtured Southern rap music in the 1990s. (Read more.)

The List

You may not hear about folk and Americana as much as some other genres, but it’s a highly creative and exciting style of music. We’re putting four of its rising stars center stage with a little help from Kelly McCartney, host of Record Bin Radio on Apple Music Country. Check out Lawrence Rothman, Amythyst Kiah, Allison Russell, and Katie Pruitt. “There’s so much young talent coming up through the ranks of this music. They all have something really important to say with their art,” McCartney says. “It’s beautiful music, but it also connects.” (Watch.)

Wheels Off with Rhett Miller

This week, Kelly McCartney joins Rhett from Upstate New York to talk about her multifaceted career as a journalist and broadcaster, her show Record Bin Radio and why it’s “the dreamiest gig ever,” and why she thinks it’s important to trust your gut, while still trusting in the universe. You’ll also hear Kelly discuss her time as a personal assistant to Susanna Hoffs of the Bangles, and the various grant funds that she’s started including Rainey Day Fund, which provides grants to BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and disabled roots music artists. (Listen.)

Sifting. Shifting. Lifting.

Welcome to the inaugural issue of Sifting, Shifting, & Lifting, where I sit down with some of the most interesting people I know and ask them the same three questions. When I dreamed up this series I knew immediately that I wanted to feature today’s guest. Clever, curious, compassionate, and deeply committed to amplifying the voices of others: Kelly McCartney doesn’t shy away from difficult, transformative social justice work (and she has fantastic taste in music). If you know anything about Kelly, you know what I am talking about. If you don’t, well, let me introduce you. (Read more.)


Music journalist, broadcaster, and host of Apple Music Country’s Record Bin Radio, Kelly McCartney shares her five things with DIVA
Five words to describe yourself: Passionate, thoughtful, intentional, romantic, and calm
Five favourite foods: Pizza, ice cream, tacos, curry, and biscuits – not all at one time, though
Five things you can’t live without: Clean water, fresh air, good music, close friends, and comfy bedding (Read more.)

Salute the Songbird with Maggie Rose

In this episode of Salute the Songbird, Maggie sits down with journalist and broadcaster Kelly McCartney. Kelly tells Maggie about growing up in rural Louisiana and why she finally committed herself to journalism after years of moving around inside the music industry. She discusses her unique approach to interviewing, the activism that’s an important part of her work, and why we have to “lock arms” in order to affect change. Kelly McCartney has worked a variety of jobs in the music industry. She has hosted multiple podcasts, radio shows, and live event series, and works with organizations such as Rainey Day Fund to support underrepresented groups. Kelly currently hosts Record Bin Radio on Apple Music. (Listen.)


Brandi Carlile put on quite the show at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium in March and – bonus! – it was for a good cause. The live-streamed event ended up raising over $100k for two roots-related music ventures, Rainey Day Fund and Color Me Country. Proceeds also benefitted Nashville music store, Fanny’s School of Music. Apple Music host and Holler contributor Kelly McCartney co-founded Rainey Day Fund, which supports BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and disabled roots artists. Its very first initiative became country music artist Rissi Palmer’s Color Me Country Fund, which supports underrepresented voices of BIPOC country artists. (Read more.)

Sounds Like Nashville

Rissi Palmer is planting seeds that are growing into a movement. She accomplishes this by gifting grants to artists of color in country music through her Color Me Country Artist Grant Fund … Formed in partnership with Kelly McCartney’s Rainey Day Fund, the Color Me Country Fund is an extension of Palmer’s popular radio show on Apple Music that also works to spotlight the voices and stories of Black, Indigenous and Latinx artists that have shaped the history of the genre… The fund is designed as a branch off of the Rainey Day Fund where McCartney, host of Apple Music’s roots music show, Record Bin Radio, is also intentional about spotlighting underrepresented voices. (Read more.)

American Songwriter

Growing up queer in a religious household, Julien Baker found herself assimilating, accommodating, and trying to get a handle on the heteronormative world around her. “That was basically all I was shown, trying to graph that onto my life, and I think I, for so long, had the same attitude that I did about being a musician who is a woman,” says Baker in a recent interview on Record Bin Radio with Kelly McCartney. “I didn’t want my queerness to be remarkable, but that came from an immature place where I wasn’t ready to recognize how you can suppose a better reality all you want, but you still exist in the reality where being in a marginalized community.” (Read more.)


On March 28, Brandi Carlile will perform a livestream concert from the Ryman and donate $1 each for every ticket sold to Fanny’s School of Music and the Rainey Day Fund. CMT Equal Play will match those donations, up to $15,000, for Rissi Palmer’s Rainey Day offshoot, the Color Me Country Artist Fund, both of which assist marginalized artists within the Americana and country music communities. Additionally, Carlile’s Looking Out Foundation will match the donations to all three organizations. Palmer’s Color Me Country Artist Fund offers sustainability for Black artists, Indigenous artists, and other artists of color within the country music community. (Read more.)

All Access Media Base

Music journalist and broadcaster KELLY McCARTNEY will debut a bi-weekly show, “Record Bin Radio,” on APPLE MUSIC COUNTRY on SUNDAY, JANUARY 24th at 2p (CT). The two-hour show will feature McCARTNEY covering a range of American Roots music, from newly discovered indies to classics, and will “explore the many connections between vintage and modern for those who like to dig a little deeper,” according to PR materials. Singer/songwriter EDIE BRICKELL will join McCARTNEY for the premiere episode as she looks back on the early days of NEW BOHEMIANS and talks about the new “Hunter And The Dog Star” album. (Read more.)

Nashville Scene

In addition to male stars like Jimmie Allen, Darius Rucker, and Kane Brown, there’s also been an impressive wave of Black women country and roots vocalists coming to the fore, like Mickey Guyton, Rhiannon Giddens, Miko Marks, Valerie June, and Rissi Palmer. Palmer’s Apple Music Radio show Color Me Country is turning heads worldwide, and she recently joined up with Kelly McCartney to establish the Color Me Country Fund to help Black and Indigenous people and other people of color get established in country music. Charley Pride’s legacy is in great hands, and is being rightly celebrated and expanded. He was irreplaceable, and will truly be missed. (Read more.)

No Depression

“Look for the helpers,” goes the quote from Mr. Rogers about his mother’s advice in the face of scary times. “You will always find people who are helping.” And even in this time of social distance and political division, it’s true. One example is singer-songwriter Rissi Palmer and music journalist Kelly McCartney, who this week announced the Color Me Country Artist Fund, a micro-grant program to offer financial assistance to artists of color in country music. “I know what it’s like to have to choose between eating and paying rent,” says Palmer, who hosts the Color Me Country program on Apple Music. The fund is accepting donations here. (Read more.)

Music Row Magazine

Singer/songwriter and Apple Music’s Color Me Country radio host, Rissi Palmer, has partnered with the Rainey Day Fund, helmed by music journalist Kelly McCartney, to create a fund to support underrepresented voices of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) artists in country music. The fund is called The Color Me Country Artist Fund. McCartney created the Rainey Day Fund, named after legendary blues artist Ma Rainey, in 2018 to assist BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and disabled artists, as well as others who add to the rich fabric of roots music. With a similar mission, Palmer recognized a real problem in the country music industry. (Read more.)

Country Insider

Apple Music Country’s Rissi Palmer, host of the “Color Me Country” show, has launched a grant fund to support BIPOC artists in country music. The fund, which takes its name from Palmer’s “Color Me Country” show, was created in partnership with fellow Apple Music Country host Kelly McCartney’s The Rainey Day Fund. Palmer tells Country Insider she remembers a time when she had to choose between paying rent or recording a demo and hopes the fund will help struggling musicians continue their career. (Read more.)

The Boot

Singer and songwriter Rissi Palmer and journalist and radio host Kelly McCartney, two passionate supporters of marginalized artists in country and roots music, have come together to establish the Color Me Country Artist Fund. The newly created fund offers another source of sustainability for Black artists, Indigenous artists and other artists of color within the country music community. McCartney’s two-year-old Rainey Day Fund (named for “Mother of the Blues” Ma Rainey) assists BIPOC, LGBTQ+ and disabled artists, as well as those who “add to the rich fabric of roots music.” (Read more.)

New American Journal

Back in a writer’s cabin in the mountains of North Carolina for at least part of the winter of 2020, I was changing channels on the NPR app on my iPhone and ran across a show on Roots Radio out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee called “Hangin’ and Sangin’” with host Kelly McCartney. No, it’s not some hokey country music podcast. This one’s out of New York state. McCartney had on a guest I was vaguely familiar with, Grayson Capps, who you may know of from the film “A Love Song for Bobby Long” about a couple of Alabama writers and college professors lost in drink and debauchery in New Orleans. (Read more.)


Bonnaroo is postponed. Merlefest and, as of Tuesday, CMA Fest are canceled. The first third of the 2020 music festival season, with all its life and connectivity, has been wiped out by the Covid-19 virus. In this previously unimaginable void, artists have taken to the internet, but mostly as solo actors, gigging for tips. The creators of Shut In & Sing imagined how much festival dynamic they could bring to the crisis. They are songwriter Natalia Zukerman and journalist/radio producer Kelly McCartney, long-time folk music friends who live about an hour apart in the Hudson Valley of New York. (Read more.)

Christian Science Monitor

… for others the online shows are a matter of economic necessity. Last week, Erykah Badu and her band charged fans $1 to drop in on the first of a series of concerts in her living room. “I got a house full of masked engineers, musicians, techs, who are all out of work,” she said. Grassroots efforts are also helping musicians. Stageit, a web-based performance platform that bills itself as “a front-row seat to a backstage experience,” has been hosting singer-songwriters such as Caleb Caudle, Lori McKenna, and Jill Sobule for an ongoing “Shut In & Sing” virtual festival. Viewers can decide how much to pay for tickets. Other streaming sites offer virtual tip jars. (Read more.)


From locales as diverse as a shut-down Lower Broadway, the stage of the Grand Ole Opry and private homes, the webcast fund-raiser rapidly became a new normal, with results that were artistic, cathartic and financial. Some were individuals playing into their own phone cameras and soliciting donations via Venmo and Paypal. Some were participating in virtual festivals, like the multi-day Shut-In & Sing, co-created by former Nashvillian radio host and journalist Kelly McCartney and artist Natalia Zukerman, featuring artists from in and out of town playing ticketed shows over the suddenly in-demand platform. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone

With live music events at a halt and social distancing having become the new normal, many performing artists have lost an essential part of their income. But a new live-streamed concert series, “Shut In & Sing,” will bring artists and fans back together, while also offering financial support to performers during this challenging time. The live streams via StageIt will feature Chely Wright, Lori McKenna, Robert Randolph, Amy Ray, Emily Saliers, Amythyst Kiah and many others. Profits from the stream will be split between the participants. Organizers of the event are Hangin’ & Sangin’ podcast host Kelly McCartney and singer/songwriter Natalia Zukerman. (Read more.)


Evan Lowenstein founded Stageit a little over a decade ago and by last year was struggling to find ways to keep the business afloat. … His notion that environmentally conscious bands would turn to Stageit in lieu of carbon-intensive touring turned out to be little more than wishful thinking. This week brought an even more unlikely lifeline. Amid a near-global lockdown aimed at halting the spread of COVID-19, Stageit has added 10,000 subscribers in two days while hosting the virtual festival Shut In & Sing. (Read more.)

No Depression

One roots-music-themed online festival we know about is called Shut In & Sing, a series of StageIt shows aiming for “connection to be made in this isolation.” The shows are “pay what you can” and participating artists so far include Amy Ray, Caleb Caudle, Allison Moorer, Amythyst Kiah, Michaela Anne, Mark Erelli, the Ballroom Thieves, and many more. You can find the full list and showtimes here. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone

While many artists are staging their own one-offs, others are planning online festivals and concert series that will live exclusively online. Kelly McCartney, host of Hangin’ & Sangin’ and director of the Rainey Day Fund, alongside singer/songwriter Natalia Zukerman, is launching “Shut In & Sing,” kicking off March 19 with livestreamed performances from Chely Wright, Lori McKenna, Anthony D’Amato, Jill Sobule, Kim Richey, and more aired via Stageit. (Read more.)

Music Journalism Insider

Kelly McCartney has been in and around music journalism for a long time, but her career is hardly a straightforward one. For Kelly, writing was a side hustle for many years. In the short time that she’s been doing music journalism full-time, however, she’s become a major voice in the roots music community, most notably with her Hangin’ & Sangin’ podcast, which combines interviews and live performances. (Read more.)

Rolling Stone Country

Singer-songwriter Amythyst Kiah turns in a riveting performance of the haunting new song “Wild Turkey” in a live video … part of a new monthly series called Rainey Day Recordings aimed at highlighting artists from marginalized communities. …“No matter who you are, seeing your image reflected on stage and in the media lets you know that you aren’t alone in this world…” adds Kelly McCartney, executive director of the Rainey Day Fund. (Read more.)

Backstage at the Hutton Hotel

Meet Kelly McCartney, producer and host for the Americana music podcast Hangin’ & Sangin’, syndicated on radio stations in Nashville, Boston, Denver, and elsewhere. She’s already interviewed the likes of Béla Fleck, Ani DiFranco, Mary Chapin Carpenter, and so many more, with others still on the docket. We recently caught up with Kelly, who records her podcast inside our Writers’ Studios, about the genre, some favorite artists, and where she likes to go in town. (Read more.)

Los Angeles Times

Those who follow music writing were abuzz this week when new online publication Cuepoint arrived through Medium, and for good reason. Within its first few days, the site had published new writing by some of music criticism’s most recognizable names, including Robert Christgau, Tom Moon and dream hampton. …Kelly McCartney’s conversation with Sinead O’Connor is smart, thoughtful, and informative. (Read more.)