If you turn on the radio today, chances are you will be treated to one of the many country songs which have made their way into our charts. Not too long ago the music genre, while beloved by some, was made into somewhat of a meme by many mainstream music listeners.
However, it looks like the genre has made the ultimate comeback with a handful of rising stars becoming worldwide sensations and breathing life back into this old-school genre.
To celebrate the rebirth of country music, we present a selection of 2019’s biggest rural superstars who will have you tapping your feet and rocking a cowboy hat in no time. If you haven’t heard of these legends, you should absolutely check them out, and keep your eyes peeled for any upcoming concerts!
Lil Nas X
While this artist is not strictly a country star, he has been stirring up all sorts of business in the country scene.
His breakout single Old Town Road mixed the country genre with catchy trap and reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and 19 on Hot Country Songs. However, controversy followed the artist as Billboard decided to exclude the song from their country title holders as hey believed it did not embody the vibe of the gene enough (despite featuring classic country elements such as a banjo and references to rural living).
But Lil Nas X got the last laugh, as country icon Billy Ray Cyrus decided to team up with the breakout star for a remix version of the track. Cyrus can be heard singing along with Nas in the new version of the song which has absolutely blown up around the world. It even reached number one here in New Zealand. Take that Billboard!
Old Town Road, Thanos, Don’t Know Me
This country diva is an absolute legend, and after several years of quiet success in the US, he has broken out in the best way.
Combs released a cover of Ed Sheeran’s hit Dive, in collaboration with Spotify, which gained international recognition. His sultry voice suited Sheeran’s emotional ballad, but Combs’ own albums are not to be ignored. Academy of Country Music awarded Combs with the prize for New Male Vocalist of the Year after his debut album This One’s For You debuted at number five on the Billboard US 200.
Beautiful Crazy, Hurricane, When It Rains It Pours.
Ru Pauls Drag Race is responsible for some incredible performers including rappers, comedians, dancers and even a country superstar!
Trixie Mattel was on season three of Drag Race before launching her career as a country singer. Unlike her hilarious and satirical drag alter ego, Mattel’s music is soulful and heartfelt. She is pushing against the industry’s glass ceiling by performing her music both in and out of drag, embracing the community she represents.
Little Sister, Moving Parts, Red Side of The Moon
This rising star not only has a voice like an angel, but she has actually been in the industry far longer than we realised.
Andrees has written hits for a selection of chart-topping groups including Charlie XCX and Vice, but now she is launching her solo career, and the world is loving it. CMT added the performer to the Next Women of Country class of 2019, celebrating her incredible success and limitless potential.
The Stranger, Lady Like, More Hearts Than Mine
This is another name you have undoubtedly been hearing on the radio in fact, it is almost impossible to escape him!
Brown has been around since 2015 however it is only now that he is really starting to dominate the billboards. He is perhaps one of country music’s greatest stars of all times, he even has a record to prove it. In October of 2017, Kane became the first musician to ever have simultaneous number ones on all of Billboard‘s five primary country charts. His latest album, Experiment, plays more with the melding of country and pop and has dominated New Zealand charts.