A Cup Of Coffee with Joey Canyon (Interview)

By Dave Parsons


Singing and performing music since before he was a teenager, Joey Canyon has had a four decades long career in country music. Besides a singer, he has been a songwriter, executive producer, director, television host, voice-over artist, actor, television network CEO and entertainment entrepreneur.

His most recent endeavor is Canyon Star TV, an internet television network, global enterprise, and wholesome family lifestyle media brand serving Americana fans in the U.S.A.

I sat down with Joey Canyon at Nashville Coffees on Music Valley Drive in Nashville recently to delve more into this incredible career that is moving along full speed.


Tell me a little bit about your career as far as the singer and all that first. 

Joey Canyon:

My career? Yeah. That might take all afternoon!  Short version. Started singing at eight years old, playing guitar at eleven. First recording session was 1973. 1976, I made music my full -time career.  I learned and played everywhere in Colorado at that time. And then, you know, in the mid -eighties, I wanted to learn the production business. So, I learned film and television. Learned every position behind the camera. 

And then spent time in front of the camera acting in that. Worked for NFL Films for eight years. PBS, Universal, Viacom. I got a real good taste in the eighties of production business and put out a music video in 1990 called Take My Money that kind of opened some doors for me. 

It was shot on film. In those days it was video. But I knew film, so I did that. And then in 1993, I actually moved from Denver to Green Hills, south of New York, coming to Nashville and spending time here, trying to make it and like many others left broke.  I went back to Colorado and got a call from NFL films because one of the big producers there heard I was a country artist. I sent him some music that he really liked it and ended up using three songs of mine in three different compilation videos using football footage of country music and I was fortunate enough to be with Hank Jr., Wynonna, and George Strait in those. I ended up doing three of those for them.

It really was a whole genre at one point, and I was very proud to be part of it, very grateful. 

And then 2011 came along and I came and did an album and got a number one hit out of that. And things just started kind of rolling. In 2012 I had the idea to create a country music variety show. That’s where the Joey Canyon show was born. From that I had another idea to, after watching television and seeing so much sex and violence and profanity and everything, I just thought someone needs to put out some family friendly programming in television. 

So I started Canyon Star TV and that was an over six year process, and a year ago we launched and here we are today. 

Me:  Wow amazing how you went from country star to television. 

Joey Canyon: We have 900 titles and over 9,000 episodes, over 22,000 viewers.

Me: And, they’re not all re -runs, you’re not just rerunning the same things, you’ve got some original stuff. 

Joey Canyon: There are legitimate 900 separate titles, 9,000 episodes, and growing, and that will change in another 30 days. We’re continually on a daily basis, Dave, adding content. 

Me: So it’s basically on -demand content, or do you have a schedule cycle? 

Joey Canyon:  No, it’s not. It’s a no subscription. Sign up for free. You can watch anything on the network whenever you want, as long as you want, and you can, it’s there all the time. 

Me:  And it’s all advertiser driven? 

Joey Canyon:  That’s correct. 

Me: Okay. Because a lot of the genre you’re in with the family -friendly doesn’t appeal to a lot of advertisers sometimes. That’s why I was asking. How do you go about finding the advertisers for that? 

Joey Canyon:  Well, we’re really digging in there. It’s kind of a two -edged sword right now. You need the capital to market your network, which will gain you more viewers. The more viewers you have, the more advertisers you attract. 

So we do have advertising going on right now. These are DM advertising, direct marketing, and that’s what you see when you open up an episode of something. But we’re now romancing some of the larger advertisers, and right now we’re in a large funding campaign, raising $2.5 million, and we feel with that kind of money that we can really do a national campaign for Canyon Star TV, to bring more viewers watching it. 

Me: So what are you looking to do eventually? Like if you said you wanted to raise the $2.5 million and do the marketing, where do you see that getting you when you get to that point? 

Joey Canyon:  Once we raise that? My five-year exit plan is to make Canyon Start TV a household name, a household network. Sell it to a larger concern by merger or acquisition. That’s our plan. The 2.5 million is just our first goal so we can engage in our national marketing plan. 

That covers a spectrum in marketing from billboards to theater advertising.  We’ve already planned that out so that’s what the 2.5 million will also allow us to bring on ahead of sales.  Then they can aggressively seek out advertisers for the television network for Canyon Star.

Me: That would give you a chance to run even more original content too?

Joey Canyon: Yes and we have no less than 25 television shows that I’m going to produce. Original content really makes a network because if it’s exclusive which it will be you can only watch it on Canyon Star TV. So, that is a real important Money raise for us is to create the original content that we have ready to go.

Now we’re after the meat and potatoes. We’re ready for strategic investors to come forward that want to see family -friendly programming out there, and so we welcome any inquiries about that. We have some creative financial avenues to provide for the right investors. 

Me: I saw you were using some music videos and things from others, all independent type artists, or are you going back to having some of those because nobody does shows music videos anymore. 

Joey Canyon:  We actually just talked… My president, Kelly Canz, handles a lot of that and we just reach out to people with, like PR people like Scott and others to see if any of their artists have music videos that would like to be on television. 

And that’s how we do it. We’re not specifically a music video CMT kind of thing. We’re just providing great entertainment, and because hardly anybody does music videos anymore, we want to still keep that going and we ask if you have any music videos. 

Me: You said you’re big on being friendly with God things. Are you gearing it mostly toward like country content or is it a mix? 

Joey Canyon: Well, we’re primarily country, primarily traditional country, but we do have some faith music videos out there and music. The original type of shows are cover the spectrum, you know. I can’t go down the list, but, I picked them out and I’ve created some of them. 

Me:  Is there anything else you want to get out there? 

Joey Canyon:  Just that we are in that funding phase and that’s really an important piece right now, to bring in those strategic investors. And certainly, if anyone has interest in helping us like that can email me at jc@canyonstar.tv

And, certainly the viewers. Gosh, just exciting things are going on. I mean, for a network only just a little over a year old to have 900 plus titles and 9,000 plus episodes, that’s no small feat.  People are amazed that that’s how big we got in one year so we’re very proud of that.  We want to get a whole lot bigger and we will, it’s like anything else you just need that capital and the word out for folks to find you and subscribe by going to www.canyonstar.tv

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