Video killed the radio star, but cowboys might just save radio. Even as CD sales and legal music downloads slid last year, radio use climbed to 93% among country fans (from 79% the year before). Most listeners tune in for an impressive 9.9 hours a week, and crossover artists such as Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, and Darius Rucker are luring a growing number of African-American and tween listeners to the airwaves. That’s plenty to celebrate at this year’s Country Music Association Festival, when 56,000 fans — new and old — will flood Nashville for four melodious days. — EMILIA BENTON
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