Bones at the iHeartRadio Theater in New York City.
April 2, 1980
|Alma mater||Henderson State University|
|Occupation||Radio personality, author, comedian, musician|
Bobby Bones (born Bobby Estell, April 2, 1980) is an American on-air radio personality, best known for hosting the nationally syndicated The Bobby Bones Show, originating at WSIX-FM in Nashville, TN. Bones is also serving as full-time mentor on American Idol on ABC, and was the winner of season 27 of Dancing with the Stars with partner Sharna Burgess. He has also written two New York Times best sellers and was a judge of Topgolf's original series Who Will Rock You.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Career
- 3 Other media
- 4 Public profile
- 5 Accidental trigger of Emergency Alert System
- 6 Politics
- 7 Awards and honors
- 8 Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots discography
- 9 References
Bones was born in Hot Springs, Arkansas, and raised in Mountain Pine, Arkansas. He has said his mother became pregnant with him at age 15, when his father was 17. He was raised in the small community of Mountain Pine, Arkansas, by his mother and maternal grandmother. His biological father was with him until the age of five, but then disappeared. Bones began dreaming of a radio career around the age of 5 or 6. He grew up poor in a trailer park, and often viewed radio as way of escaping poverty. Bones began his radio career at age 17 at the campus station of Henderson State University, KSWH-FM 102.5 The Pulse. He graduated with a B.A. in Radio/Television from Henderson in 2002.
Early professional career
While still in college, Bones went to work as a station hand at KLAZ in Hot Springs, Arkansas, but was put on the air within a few days of being hired. A manager there gave him the choice of going on the air as Bobby Z or Bobby Bones. Bones's first full-time radio contract paid him $17,000. In 2002, Bones was hired by Q100/KQAR in Little Rock, Arkansas. He then worked for radio station (KLAL), which led to his hosting The Bobby Bones Show on KHFI-FM in Austin, Texas.
Bones was originally hired for the evening shift on KHFI-FM and moved to the morning drive shortly after. While in Austin, he met two of his future co-hosts, Lunchbox (in a bar) and Amy (in a Culver's). He initially hired Sarah Osburn, who was familiar with the radio industry, but then decided that Amy would be a better fit. Bones believed in Amy and put her on the air immediately. His executive producer, Alayna, was previously an intern on the show.
Over ten years, the show built its audience into the top-rated morning show in Austin and was syndicated in a few regional markets. At the height of his popularity, Bones was offered a job outside of radio but ultimately chose to remain with Clear Channel.
In the fall of 2012, Clear Channel moved Bones and his show from Austin with its Top 40 format to Nashville and a country music format while taking The Bobby Bones Show nationwide. Bones took over the slot hosted by longtime DJ Gerry House, who retired in 2010. Bones now broadcasts from WSIX-FM in Nashville on weekday mornings from 5:00 a.m. to 10 a.m. (CT). His co-hosts are Lunchbox and Amy, and features Ray, Eddie, Morgan, Mike D., and Morgan #2. Michael Bryan is the program director.
The Bobby Bones Show has become a regular interview stop for top country music stars. including Luke Bryan, Taylor Swift, Blake Shelton, Tim McGraw, Lady Antebellum, Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, and The Band Perry.
On air, Bones and his co-hosts break the country radio mold with a mix of pop-culture news and information. As Bones noted in one interview, "I'm not a cowboy. I don't wear a belt buckle, or I don't have those traditional old-school country music radio elements about me. But from where I grew up and how I grew up, country music has always been the fabric of the music that I've listened to."
In 2016, Bones admitted to spending $13,000 on Nashville billboards in 2013 which stated "GO AWAY BOBBY BONES" as a PR campaign to garner sympathy.
In February 2013, The Bobby Bones Show went into national syndication with Premiere Networks (owned by Clear Channel) and was made available via iHeartRadio.com and the iHeartRadio mobile app. The show launched with 35 stations and is currently carried by 68 FM radio stations in the U.S. It is regarded as central to Clear Channel's partnership with Country Music Television in what's been termed a “country music media arms race.” According to Clear Channel Radio, which owns WSIX-FM, the show is the number one-rated morning show in Austin, Texas, Wichita, Kansas, Amarillo, Texas, and Lubbock, Texas.
Nationally, The Bobby Bones Show is the biggest country music morning show in the country, with an estimated audience of nearly 3 million listeners. The show's largest market is Washington, D.C., where WMZQ airs it weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.
Bones also hosts the weekly “Country Top 30 with Bobby Bones”, carried on over 100 radio stations nationwide.
As part of the Clear Channel organization, Bones was tapped to host the inaugural iHeartRadio Country Festival held in Austin, Texas, in 2014. He presented the award for Country Song of the Year at the first iHeartRadio Music Awards in Los Angeles.
Since 2012, Bones has been part of the Fox Sports Radio lineup, hosting the weekend sports talk program Roddick and Bones with tennis star Andy Roddick, airing Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time on nearly 300 radio stations.
Bones is also the host of the podcast “The Bobbycast” where he interviews singers/songwriters of all genres. He has also launched his own podcast network, the Nashville Podcast Network.
On June 19, 2018, he released his second New York Times Best Seller entitled Fail Until You Don’t: Fight. Grind. Repeat.
In 2018, Bones was a guest mentor for season 16 of American Idol (the first to air on ABC) during the top 24 round. On November 6, 2018, it was announced Bones would become a full-time mentor for the series beginning in season 17. During an episode aired April 8, 2019, Bones served as guest host, as host Ryan Seacrest was sick and missed the taping.
Dancing with the Stars
In September 2018, Bones was announced as one of the celebrities to compete on the 27th season of Dancing with the Stars, being paired with the professional dancer Sharna Burgess. Despite the second lowest scores for a couple in the final 4, the couple made it to the finals, and ended up winning the competition.
|Week #||Dance/Song||Judges' score||Total||Result|
|1||Jive / "T-R-O-U-B-L-E"||7||6||7||20||Safe|
|2||Foxtrot / "Theme from New York, New York"
Quickstep / "That Old Black Magic"
|3||Contemporary / "A Million Dreams"||8||7||8||23||Safe|
|4||Trio Cha-cha-cha / "U Can't Touch This"||7||6||7||20||Safe|
|5||Waltz / "Part of Your World"||7||7||7||21||No Elimination|
|6||Argentine Tango / "Mr. Sandman"||8||7||7||22||Safe|
|7||Viennese Waltz / "Can't Help Falling in Love"
Team Freestyle / "9 to 5"
|Salsa / "G.D.F.R."
Jive / "Gimme Some Lovin'"
|Cha-cha-cha / "U Can't Touch This"
Freestyle / "The Greatest Show"
According to the Washington Post, Bones is different from typical radio DJs, as he doesn't have the "classic, booming radio DJ voice".
On September 28, 2013, Bones and his crew were part of a team that set the Guinness World Record "Most hunger relief meals packaged in one hour (team)".
Accidental trigger of Emergency Alert System
In October 2014, Bones accidentally triggered the Emergency Alert System, by playing EAS tones, during an on-air rant about an erroneous EAS test interrupting coverage locally of the 2014 World Series on Fox affiliate WZTV. The EAS tones, would have only triggered the EAS issuance in Nashville but the show was in syndication and so the signal cascaded through the show's nationwide affiliates, which caused AT&T U-verse boxes nationwide to lock up with the erroneous test. In May 2015, Bones's employer iHeartMedia paid a $1 million FCC fine due to the incident and removed all EAS sound effects from their nationwide sound library to prevent a recurrence.
On January 3, 2017, Bones announced he was considering a run for governor of Arkansas in the 2018 election. On March 14, 2017, Bones announced he was not running. He frequently speaks about an aspiration to run for political office in the future on his show, further fueling such speculation.
Awards and honors
For four years running, from 2004 to 2008, Bones was named Best Radio Personality by the Austin Music Awards, presented by The Austin Chronicle and SXSW. The Bobby Bones Show also won Best Radio Program 2007-2008. On April 6, 2014, Bones, Amy and Lunchbox won their first Academy of Country Music Award for National On-Air Personality of the Year, just nine months into Bones's first year in country music. Bones was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame during a ceremony on November 2, 2017, at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago
Bones and The Bobby Bones Show won National On-Air Personality for the ACM Awards in 2014, 2016, and 2018.
The Bobby Bones Show also took home a CMA award in 2017 for National Personality.
On November 19, 2018, Bones and professional ballroom-dance partner Sharna Burgess won season 27 of Dancing with the Stars.
Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots discography
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions||Sales|
|The Critics Give It 5 Stars||
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions|
|The Raging Kidiots||
|The Next Episode EP||Release date: 2017|
Other charted songs
|US Country Airplay
|US Comedy Digital|
|2016||"We Can't Stand Each Other"
(with Carrie Underwood)
|—||8||The Critics Give It 5 Stars|
|"Every Day Is a Good Day"||—||10|
|"Fishin' with My Dad"||60||20|
|2017||Namaste||1||The Next Episode EP|
|2017||Chick-Fil-a (... But It's Sunday)||3||The Next Episode EP|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart|
|2016||"If I Was Your Boyfriend"||Robert Chavers|
- Schmitt, Brad (December 20, 2014). "Radio host Bobby Bones still feels pain of mom's addiction, death". The Tennessean. Nashville, Tennessee. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
- Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Bobby Bones Biography". AllMusic.com. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
- Bobby Bones (May 19, 2016). The Bobby Bones Show (radio broadcast). iHeartMedia. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones may be Regis & Kelly co-host". KXAN. January 13, 2011. Retrieved June 25, 2014.
- Shea, Stewart (March 23, 2014). "Mountain Pine native deals real on the radio, goes nationwide". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Archived from the original on September 17, 2018. Retrieved June 4, 2014 – via Arkansas Online.
- Shea, Stewart (March 11, 2014). "Country Radio's New Voice". Arkansas Online. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
- Dinges, Gary (October 9, 2013). "Bobby Bones Austin's Top Morning Host". Austin 360. Archived from the original on 2014-12-05. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
- Trigger (January 13, 2014). "Clear Channel DJ Bobby Bones May Be Looking to Leave Radio". Saving Country Music.com. Retrieved June 14, 2014.
- "Air talent is radio's new country crossover". Inside Radio. Archived from the original on 2014-07-02. Retrieved June 29, 2014.
- "The Bobby Bones Show". Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- Rau, Nate (September 24, 2013). "Bobby Bones pops modern sound to top of country radio". The Tennessean. Retrieved June 29, 2014.
- "Country radio DJ Bobby Bones reveals he spent $13,000 on a hoax to win over Nashville". Washington Post. 13 May 2016. Retrieved July 14, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones Shifts From Top 40 To Country, Launching Daily National Country Show And Weekend Countdown Show". February 23, 2013. Retrieved June 29, 2014.
- "Bobby Bones Show Affiliates". Archived from the original on July 7, 2014. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Clear Channel Media and Entertainment and Top On-Air Radio Personality Bobby Bones Ink Long-Term Contract". Clear Channel. June 18, 2014. Archived from the original on 2014-09-25. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Country Top 30 with Bobby Bones". Archived from the original on November 10, 2014. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean & more tapped for first-ever iHeartRadio Country Festival". iHeart Radio. January 8, 2014. Archived from the original on January 17, 2014. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Bobby Presents at iHeart Radio Awards". May 1, 2014. Archived from the original on 2014-07-02. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Bobby Bones on Regis and Kelly". January 28, 2011. Retrieved July 1, 2014.[dead link]
- "Andy Roddick Fox Sports Live Host". May 22, 2013. Retrieved June 29, 2014.
- "Country radio host Bobby Bones reveals how he got his name" today.com, May 18, 2016
- Ramos, Dino-Ray; Ramos, Dino-Ray (2018-11-06). "'American Idol' Sets Bobby Bones As Official In-House Mentor". Deadline. Retrieved 2019-04-09.
- "'American Idol': Bobby Bones steps in for ailing Ryan Seacrest on Monday's episode". USA Today. Retrieved 2019-04-09.
- Murphy, Desiree (September 12, 2018). "'Dancing With the Stars' Season 27 Cast Revealed -- Meet the Celebs and Their Pro Partners!". Entertainment Tonight. Retrieved September 12, 2018.
- Yar, Emily (March 18, 2013). "Bobby Bones, new to WMZQ, hosts a different kind of country music morning radio show". Washington Post. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Most Hunger Relief Meals Packaged in One Hour". Guinness Book of World Records. Guinness World Records. September 28, 2013. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-10-27. Retrieved 2014-10-27.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "iHeart to Pay $1M for Misusing EAS Tones During The Bobby Bones Show". December 9, 2015.
- "Radio host Bobby Bones considering run for Ark. governor". THV11 Digital, KTHV. January 3, 2017. Retrieved January 3, 2017.
- Taha, Nada (March 14, 2017). "Bobby Makes Official Statement On Political Plans". The Bobby Bones Show. Archived from the original on March 20, 2017. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- "Austin Music Awards". Austin Chronicle. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- "Radio Award Winners Announced for the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards". Academy of Country Music. February 18, 2014. Retrieved June 28, 2014.
- http://www.talkers.com June 26, 2017
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Country Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Comedy Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- Bjorke, Matt (April 2, 2016). "Country Album Sales Chart: April 4, 2016". Roughstock.
- "The Raging Idiots – Chart history – Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "The Raging Idiots – Chart history – Kids Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "The Raging Idiots – Chart history – Independent Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Country Airplay". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 29, 2016.
- "Bobby Bones – Chart history – Comedy Digital Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved May 3, 2016.
- Shelburne, Craig (February 5, 2016). "Bobby Bones and The Raging Idiots Issue New Single". MusicRow. Retrieved March 29, 2016.