Keeping country music lovers connected

By Matthew McCully

Normally the front page of the Talk section on Fridays features the Country Connection, where Jessie Pelletier talks about what’s hot on the country music scene and highlights the work of talented local musicians.
This fall marks the 30th anniversary of the column, which has a devoted group of followers.
With a birthday just around the corner, The Record felt this might be a good opportunity to celebrate the work Pelletier has done in the paper and over the airwaves to help readers and listeners develop a passion for country music.
For those who only know Pelletier as a writer, they may be surprised to learn her journey onto the pages of The Record started with her radio show Club Country – CFLX-FM 95,5.
“I didn’t think it would last but then the passion grows and grows, and you can’t imagine not doing it,” Pelletier said in an interview after 20 years of writing and hosting her radio show.
At the time, Club Country had 866 followers on Facebook. The page now has 3,500 members, anxious to hear Pelletier’s next music recommendation, or tune into interviews talented musicians from near and far.
It was her passion for country music that got Pelletier into radio, but it wasn’t a love affair straight out of the gate.
In a previous interview, Pelletier described one of her first times on the air nearly scared her away for good. “Someone had left the building not knowing I was in there with the technician and they set the alarm. At the time we were in Magog and we had to come down the fire escape at the back of the building and I was wearing heels and a skirt. We couldn’t get down the ladder because cars were parked under, so we were yelling for help… I went home and told my husband there was no way I was going back,” she explained.
She eventually warmed up to radio, and is now a total pro.
Just as things were getting off the ground at CFLX, Pelletier caught the eye of Sunil Mahtani, who was working as editor of Townships Week for The Record.
“I got her on board,” Mahtani remembered, admitting after a few decades the details are a bit fuzzy. “I remember we had a great lunch, and we talked about what she could do for The Record,” the former editor said.

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