Tom Hanks Launches Classic Country Music Streaming Station

Actor and director Tom Hanks took his love of older, more obscure country music and streamed it with the launch of his new station Country A-Go-Go station, which recently aired on TuneIn.

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The commercial-free station, launched in observance of the 100th birthday of Hank Williams, features deep cuts from classic country artists from the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s. Hanks, along with radio veteran Debbie Daughtry digitized more than 3,500 vinyl records from their personal collections and other sources to curate the streaming station.

“This is the music that I grew up with and still influences the music that I love to this day,” said Daughtry in a statement. “The new generation of country music artists are amazing. The genre is having a huge comeback right now.”

She continued, “‘Country A-Go-Go’ reconnects listeners with country music’s origins to hear the legends that gave country its soul. This station is for any country music fan that wants to hear great music from a very influential time in history.”

For the station, Hanks and Daughtry compiled a cavernous collection of tracks, including Williams, along with cuts from Fess Parker, Home & Hethro, Wanda Jackson, Ray Price, Tammy Wynette, and George Jones, among dozens more. The station will also feature a collection of vintage advertisements that will run in between playlists, giving it a feel of a classic country radio station from the bygone eras.

[RELATED: 3 Songs You Didn’t Know Hank Williams Wrote for Other Artists]

“What Debbie created, and what resonated so deeply with Tom, is simply great radio,” said Richard Stern, CEO of TuneIn in an earlier statement. “Radio is an art form, and like any artistic medium, it thrives when creators connect with their audience. While there is a lot of investment happening now to create radio with artificial intelligence and synthetic voices, this approach misses the whole point and value of radio. It’s not just hearing a playlist, it’s feeling connected to the people who love what you love. It’s about how imperfect moments achieve perfection on air. 

Country A-Go-Go is the second bespoke station launched by Hanks and Daughtry on TuneIn. The two first premiered the classic rock-focused Boss Radio 66, which was born out of Daughtry’s prior program, Rock ‘n’ Soul Ichiban. Daughtry’s original show aired on the community radio station WFMU in New Jersey and caught Hanks’s attention after his son Colin introduced him to it.

Hanks, who often shows up as a guest DJ on Boss Radio, was immediately hooked to the 24-hour stream of music and vintage jingles and even tweeted his love for the show in 2011. “At WFMU and Ichiban Radio, I heard brand new music that is 60 years old,” said Hanks. “Artists who put passion and drive into making their records that I appreciated. When Debbie played some Japanese guitar-heavy surf band from 1964, my head burst. ‘Where has this music been?’”

Hanks added, “Her playlist was an undiscovered musical score for my day. When Debbie contacted me that she had left Ichiban and started ‘Boss Radio 66,’ I knew she had created my dream station.”

Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

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