Radio and TV Talk

Rodney Ho covers TV and radio, from Atlanta’s stations to the hottest “American Idol" news.

TV briefs: Travis Tritt, Netflix study, Ted Terry on ‘Queer Eye,’ local crime on ‘Dateline’

Originally posted Thursday, June 7, 2018 by RODNEY HO/ on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Marietta native and country legend Travis Tritt is joining Jake Owen and Shania Twain for a new USA Network reality competition show “Real Country.”

It’s set up more like a showcase rather than a pure elimination show.

In each hour-long episode set to premiere this fall, Twain, Owen and Tritt will hand-select emerging solo artists, duos and groups to perform in specific country genres. The best artists from each episode will perform in a grand finale, for the chance to be named one of country music’s next breakout acts. 

It’s been a decade since a show like this has been tried on a major network.

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“Nashville Star” aired on USA Network, then NBC, from 2003 to 2008 and generated one bonafide superstar in Miranda Lambert and a mid-sized star in Chris Young.That show was structured more along the lines of “American Idol.” 

In a press release, Tritt said this: 

“I’ve been influenced by so many amazing country music artists in my career, and the key to longevity is using those influences as inspiration to become something unique. I’ve never been shy about how I feel about country music so I can’t wait to join REAL COUNTRY to share my experiences and thoughts. Like I always say…if you don’t want my opinion don’t ask me a question.” 


Clarkston Mayor Ted Terry has made headlines for decriminalizing marijuana possession and becoming a so-called “sanctuary city.” 

But Terry, the bearded Georgia chapter director of the Sierra Club, is about to become famous for a different reason: the crew of Netflix’s “Queer Eye” last year gave him a makeover. He will be featured in an episode season two of the revived reality TV show where five gay men dispense advice to help people (dubbed as “heroes” by the producers) improve their looks, their feelings about themselves, their cooking ability and their home. 

Terry is seen momentarily during the trailer released today. 

He isn’t allowed to do interviews about the show until after the season is available June 15 to subscribers but he did cheekily text me with the line, “Make Ted Great Again.” 


Netflix and other streaming services are impacting traditional media, as anyone with a pulse already knows but the statistics are stark. PricewaterhouseCoopers, in an annual study, said 73 percent of U.S. households subscribed to a cable, satellite or telecom TV service last year, down from 79 percent in 2015. 

Penetration peaked in 2012 at about 87 percent

Traditional TV and home video, which includes pay TV subscriptions, DVD rentals and sales, and VOD peaked in dollar amounts in 2015 at $110.3 billion but will slip to about $102.5 billion this year. 

A recent Deloitte survey indicated a majority of households for the first time in 2017 subscribed to at least one streaming service. (Netflix, of course, is by far the most popular.)

More details about the PrincewaterhouseCoopers report are here


The remains of Lauren Giddings were found outside of her Macon apartment. (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

“Dateline NBC” on Friday, June 8 will focus on a gruesome 2011 murder of Lauren Giddings in Macon. 

The then Mercer Law School student was dismembered with a hacksaw. A classmate was pinned on the murder. 

The episode will feature interviews with Giddings’ sisters, Macon police Sgt. Stephen Gatlin and district attorney David Cooke, among others. 

It airs at 10 p.m.

Our detailed 2012 look at the case by former AJC writer Mark Davis. 

Our last story about this case. 

About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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