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Riley Johnson

  • Riley is a Senior Country Music Journalist for Country Thang Daily, known for her engaging storytelling and insightful coverage of the genre.
  • Before joining Country Thang Daily, Riley developed her expertise at Billboard and People magazine, focusing on feature stories and music reviews.
  • Riley has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Belmont University, with a minor in Cultural Studies.

Riley Johnson is a seasoned country music journalist whose deep passion for the genre shines through in her work. With over five years at Country Thang Daily, she covers everything from iconic classics to emerging hits, making her a cherished voice in the country music community.

Brief Biography

A Tennessee native, Riley grew up with a profound appreciation for the rich musical traditions of the South. Before joining Country Thang Daily, she developed her writing skills at esteemed publications like Billboard and People magazine. Riley’s dedication to her craft and her knack for connecting with readers through her vivid storytelling have solidified her reputation as a trusted country music journalist.

Experience

Riley’s journalism career began during her college years when she contributed to her university’s literary magazine. She also wrote music reviews and artist spotlights for her local newspaper. After college, Riley joined Billboard as a contributing writer, where she gained recognition for her detailed coverage of country music’s biggest names. She later transitioned to People magazine, where she specialized in feature stories on rising country stars and the latest industry trends.

At Country Thang Daily, Riley has authored numerous popular articles, including exclusive interviews, album reviews, and thought-provoking opinion pieces. Her ability to blend historical context with contemporary insights has garnered her a loyal readership.

Education

Riley holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from Belmont University, with a minor in Cultural Studies. Her academic background, coupled with her practical experience, has equipped her with the skills to be an insightful and credible journalist.

Awards & Associations

Television Guest: Riley has appeared as a country music expert on regional news segments and popular music podcasts such as Nashville Soundcheck and Country Cast.
Festival Host: In the summer of 2021, Riley hosted a series of live panels at the Country Music Festival, featuring discussions with emerging artists.
Publication Contributor: Riley represents Country Thang Daily in print and online publications, including Rolling Stone Country, Billboard, and MusicRow Magazine.

Personal Interests

Outside of her professional endeavors, Riley enjoys exploring Nashville’s dynamic music scene, attending live concerts, and discovering new local talent. She’s also an avid reader, often delving into biographies of country music legends.

Important Questions From Country Thang Daily

Best advice for aspiring country music journalists?
Never stop learning and always be curious. The stories behind the music are endless, and there’s always something new to discover.

What’s your all-time favorite country song?
“He Stopped Loving Her Today” by George Jones. Its emotional depth and storytelling are unparalleled in country music history.

Dream country music interviewee?
Emmylou Harris. Her influence on country music and her storied career would provide incredible insights and stories.

Favorite after-concert snack?
A slice of warm pecan pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream – the perfect Southern treat after a night of great music.

Latest Stories

Reba McEntire Gives You a Taste of Liberty in Single “Freedom”

Reba McEntire Gives You a Taste of Liberty in Single “Freedom”

How many lengths will you go through to get a taste of freedom? McEntire’s modern country track will tell you so. 

Boot Scootin’ Bliss: “Every Little Honky Tonk Bar” with George Strait

Boot Scootin’ Bliss: “Every Little Honky Tonk Bar” with George Strait

Ever wondered what goes through a typical Honky Tonk Bar on a Friday night? Well, Strait’s “Every Little Honky Tonk Bar” tells you just that.

Willie Nelson Brings “Hello Walls” to the Country Music Halls 

Willie Nelson Brings “Hello Walls” to the Country Music Halls 

From love letters to breakup songs, Nelson’s “Hello Walls” is a heart-wrenching song about love and despair.  

“Summertime Blues” by Eddie Cochran is the Perfect Summer Anthem

If you are young and broke in the summer, playing a good old country tune such as Cochran’s “Summertime Blues” will never go out of style.

Country Thunder Wisconsin 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Thunder Wisconsin 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Thunder Wisconsin 2024 is pumped up to serve another wild party at Twin Lakes, Wisconsin, from July 18-21. You won’t want to miss it.

Country Singer Kane Brown and His Wife Katelyn Welcomes Third Baby!

Country Singer Kane Brown and His Wife Katelyn Welcomes Third Baby!

Country singer Kane Brown and his wife, Katelyn Jae, are now a family of five with the arrival of their third baby. Let’s meet their new boy.

Merle Haggard’s “Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down” Says Alcohol Can’t Heal Wounds

Merle Haggard’s “Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down” Says Alcohol Can’t Heal Wounds

When the alcohol isn’t working to mend your broken heart, what options do you have left? Haggard’s single “Tonight the Bottle Let Me Down” got your back.

5 Ashley Cooke Facts You Need to Know

5 Ashley Cooke Facts You Need to Know

Ashley Cooke is among those rookie artists who are forced to be reckoned with, and if you’re not a fan yet, this is the perfect time to become one. 

Huercasa Country Festival 2024: What You Need To Know

Huercasa Country Festival 2024: What You Need To Know

From July 5-7, Huercasa Country Festival 2024 will roch the Las Delicias Municipal Soccer Field in Riaza, Spain. So, start packing!

Under The Big Sky 2024: What You Need To Know

Under The Big Sky 2024: What You Need To Know

Invite friends and family to celebrate country music at Big Mountain Ranch in Whitefish, Montana, from July 12-14 for Under The Big Sky 2024.

Country Jam USA 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Jam USA 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Jam USA 2024 is back at the Eau Claire Event in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. So, mark your calendars and reserve July 18-20. 

Country Thunder Saskatchewan 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Thunder Saskatchewan 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Thunder Sasketchwan 2024 is excited to welcome fans to Craven World Campground in Sasketchwan, Canada from July 11-14. 

Windy City Smokeout 2024: What You Need To Know

Windy City Smokeout 2024: What You Need To Know

Windy City Smokeout 2024 is gearing up for a superstar-packed year, so go and reserve July 11-14 and book your flight to Chicago, Illinois, now!

Over 100,000 Fans Join George Strait As He Sang “Amarillo by Morning”

Over 100,000 Fans Join George Strait As He Sang “Amarillo by Morning”

It was an electrifying moment in Texas A&M’s Kyle Field as 110,905 fans joined George Strait as he sang “Amarillo by Morning.”

Country Concert 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Concert 2024: What You Need To Know

Country Concert 2024 is here and they’re going to rock Fort Laramie, Ohio, from July 11-13. So mark your calendars and pack your bags. 

Norsk Countrytreff 2024: What You Need To Know

Norsk Countrytreff 2024: What You Need To Know

Enjoy country music from top-tier acts all the way in Breim, Gloppen, Nordfjord, Norway from July 10-14 for the Norsk Countrytreff 2024! 

Willie Nelson + The Lily of the Valley

Willie Nelson’s Sweet Rendition of “The Lily of the Valley”

Iconic country singer Willie Nelson released a sweet rendition of the hit gospel song “The Lily of the Valley,” and here’s everything you need to know. 

Shaboozey's "A Bar Song (Tipsy)" Captures the Daily Grind

Shaboozey’s “A Bar Song (Tipsy)” Captures the Daily Grind

Escape the harsh reality of life with Shaboozey’s hit song “A Bar Song (Tipsy).”

Did Carrie Underwood's House Catch Fire? Details Here

Did Carrie Underwood’s House Catch Fire? Details Here

According to reports, an off-road UTV caught fire and spread to the singer’s garage. It was quickly contained, and everyone is safe.

George Strait’s Record-Breaking Concert at A&M’s Kyle Field Texas

George Strait’s Record-Breaking Concert at A&M’s Kyle Field Texas

Breaking his 1977 record, Country superstar George Strait made his Saturday concert in Texas a history to brag about.  

Lainey Wilson Songs

10 Of The Best Lainey Wilson Songs For Your Country Playlist

Here are 10 of the best Lainey Wilson songs you should listen to at least once or maybe add to your country playlist. Check them out.

Marie Osmond + Paper Roses

Marie Osmond And Her 1973 Hit Country Single “Paper Roses”

The song “Paper Roses” may not have been a Marie Osmond original, but she made it her own, taking it to number one on the country chart. 

Merle Kilgore

The Man Between Two Legendary Hanks: Merle Kilgore

Meet Merle Kilgore, another legendary Merle in country music, whose career was marked by his songwriting prowess and two legendary Hanks.

Kenny Chesney + Mac McAnally + Down The Road

Mac McAnally Duets Hit Song “Down The Road” With Kenny Chesney

Country superstar Mac McAnally duets one of his hit songs, “Down The Road,” with Kenny Chesney, eighteen years after its initial release. 

Johnny Cash and Ray Charles + Why Me Lord

“Why Me Lord”: The Iconic Duet  of Johnny Cash and Ray Charles 

In 2010, Johnny Cash and Ray Charles shocked the world when they released their version of “Why Me Lord,” 29 years after its initial recording. 

Elvis Presley + I Believe in the Man in the Sky

Elvis Presley Goes Gospel with Bill Kenny’s “I Believe in The Man in the Sky”

If the mystery of a higher power and its existence remains unresolved, Elvis Presley’s rendition of “I Believe in the Man in the Sky” will make you ponder.

Aaron Neville + The Grand Tour

Aaron Neville Puts his Own Spin into George Jones’ “The Grand Tour”

With an impressive soulful voice, Aaron Neville makes “The Grand Tour” sound like his own song combining the sound of country and blues into one. 

Jimmie Davis’ “Suppertime” featuring Anita Kerr is a Gospel Song of Solace

Jimmie Davis’ “Suppertime” featuring Anita Kerr is a Gospel Song of Solace 

30s icon Jimmie Davis sings a sweet tune perfect for a Sunday Morning with the single “Suppertime.”

George Jones + Wings of a Dove

George Jones’ Remake of “Wings of a Dove” Can Lift You Up 

“Wings of a Dove” by George Jones is a cover you’ll need to listen to if you need some cheering up. 

Skeeter Davis and Bobby Bare + A Dear John Letter

Skeeter Davis and Bobby Bare’s Rendition of “A Dear John Letter” 

Davis and Bare’s voices perfectly blend in to tell a breakup story in their cover of “A Dear John Letter,” which makes it just as tear-jerking as the original.

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