Cassadee Pope is joining the voices of the other female artists who are frustrated by the lack of women at radio. The Season 3 winner of The Voice finds it discouraging that men still dominate the airwaves, but the imbalance is only fueling Pope to work harder than ever.
"We're talking about it, we're doing a lot, we're being proactive, we're doing events like this. We're going on tour with each other, but it's not moving the needle as much as it should," Pope shared with PopCulture.com at the CMT Next Women of Country celebration. "I think the conversation's really loud, but, unfortunately, it's not coming to fruition, it's not changing a lot of things. I think the main issue is it's like we all almost have to keep our heads down and just keep going forward, and maybe focus more on just doing our thing, and not focusing too much on, 'Why aren't we getting these opportunities?' We have to create our own."
Pope famously left her former label, Big Machine, to launch out on her own, after she became frustrated by her inability to make her music, her way. Although she's never regretted her decision, it did come with a few unfortunate consequences.
"That's something that I've had to learn this year is, being an independent artist, and creating my own opportunities," Pope acknowledged. "I might not get nominated for this, or I might not get played on the radio, but I'm doing really well over here, in the Spotify realm, and I'm doing really well over here, on social media, touring. So, sometimes it's frustrating when we don't get the attention we deserve, but I also think that we need to focus on the areas that we excel in."
Miranda Lambert also recently spoke out about the way women are being shut out, saying that the only way she had a recent No. 1 hit (with "Drowns the Whiskey") was because she was singing with Jason Aldean, a man. It's a situation Pope knows all too well, since her only chart-topping single is "Think of You," with Chris Young.
"I definitely think the huge part of the success of that song is Chris, and his name, and voice, his success on radio already," Pope conceded. "I've definitely had my fair share of failed singles at radio, but I feel really good about the songs that did well, that I released. Nothing went No. 1, but 'Wasting All These Tears' did really well. In my head, I see 'Think Of You' as my first No. 1, but I also think there's a lot more to be said about having my own No. 1, and having it be a song of mine that maybe I wrote, or that I recorded on my project, but I'm very grateful for that song, obviously.
"It's opened a lot of doors for me," Pope added, "so if that's what it took, which was really fun and I loved every second of it, to get my foot in the door and hopefully have some of my own stuff do better at country radio, then great. I'm not above that, but it helped."
Still, the 29-year-old acknowledged that it's every artist's dream – male and female – to hear their music on the radio, and that desire is still as strong as ever inside of her.
"We want our music on the radio," Pope insisted. "We grew up wanting that, as a dream, and I've gotten a taste of it. So, it's something that I want to continue to achieve. That's one of the biggest things. It would be great to see more women booked on festivals. I mean there's like 95 percent men on these festivals."
Photo Credit: Getty images/Erika Goldring