Move over hip hop, Country Rap is making a comeback and everyone is going nuts for it!
Country music has normally always been for a certain type of musical fan—often those Mid-Western conservative cowboys who are an emblem for patriotism. The likes of Shania Twain, the Dixie Chicks, Tim McGraw, The Zac Brown Band, Taylor Swift, and so on have made country music one in the same with American Culture. All great country stars come out of America and are one in the same with the American flag.
But likewise, rap music has achieved similar results! Rap emerged from the lower income neighborhoods in Brooklyn, New York decades ago and has continually morphed into various styles each generation seems to come up with. Rap music has also become synonymous with the American culture, with people around the world falling in love with America for the rap music it produces. Especially when it comes to younger generations like millennials and Generation Z. They idolize rap stars who become famous on TikTok and Instagram, with many up and coming rap stars getting their start on social media first, with record deals coming second.
But now, according to Society19, 57% of millennials like country music too! And they were predominately the ones who formerly only like rap music. What has happened? How can a young generation be fans of both older, more conservative country singers and equally enjoy younger, more liberal rappers?
Enter a new musical era of Country Rap.
Last year Country Rap came back to the table with a new bang, where Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus’s song Old Town Road kicked Madonna off the #1 spot of longest standing #1 song on the Billboard Charts! Madonna had for years been the main idol of musical success in the pop genre. But now, Country Rap has moved Pop to the side and is making a strong case for becoming the new it music genre that all radio stations, DJs, and events love to play.
Here are all the reasons why we believe Country Rap is making the ultimate comeback.
1. Classic country stars team up with youthful rap artists
Back in the day, there were the likes of country superstars like Johnny Cash, Billy Ray Cyrus, Dolly Parton, and Hank Williams. Their days in the spotlight have truly moved on, but youthful rappers are introducing them to a whole new generation of rap fans with epic country rap collaborations. It takes the twang out of the country and makes the lyrics cool to more mainstream music fans. This first became popular back in the 1960s and is now coming back with a lot of momentum
2. Country Rap offers the perfect combo of topic
What do both country music and rap love to sing about? Love, money, and alcohol! So from a lyrical standpoint, they are really the perfect fit for one another! Country music lyrics have an incredible storytelling ability, just like rap music. So it is no surprise that the two can work together to form a perfect combination of lyrical craftsmanship! Not only is the beat dope, but the stories that come out of country rap are absolutely special and really strike a chord with listeners.
3. Country Rap broke all the records
According to New York Times, Lil Nas X’s country rap collaboration with Billy Ray Cyrus literally broke the internet and all Billboard chart topping records. The epic song “Old Town Road” all started with Lil Nas X tweeting out Billy Ray Cyrus, who only has a blackberry! But Billy’s fans were able to pass along the tweet, where he happily obliged to the collaboration request. As soon as it was released, his song became the number 1 song in the country for nearly 17 weeks straight, the first any song has ever dominated the charts that much. The best part of this song is the origins of the country’s simple guitar strums and rap’s mastery of storytelling and beats.
4. Country Rap broke all the records
Did you know that Nashville, the country music capital, and Atlanta, the rap music capital, are geographically really close together! When you look at the collaboration from a geographical perspective, the physical locations of these two musical epicenters is what is contributing to the comeback of Country Rap. Some of the most popular songs to come out of the newest wave of this special genre includes Cruise by Georgia Florida Line and Over and Over by Nelly ft Tim McGraw.
5. The greats are teaming up together
When you have Will Smith, a legendary rapper, wanting to conquer country music and pay homage to the genre, the result is beautiful country rap songs like Wild Wild West. And then you’ve got Country superstar Taylor Swift teaming up with B.o.B. to produce absolute bangers like Both of Us, which result in a soft and harmonic melody that mainstream music fans fall in love with. Many argue that this trend is becoming more and more common in the newest decade, and are able to widen their audience reach through these epic collaborations.
5. Country Rap lets artists tap into their emotions
Country music is famous for singing about heartbreak, love and patriotism. Rap music is famous for singing about drugs, sex, and alcohol. But according to Time Magazine, the fusion of the two genres to create Country Rap allows singers to truly tap into their emotions. These emotions come across in such a raw and real way, which is a huge factor to the songs success and why they become viral sensations. Also, many current artists seek inspiration from artists who have come before them. Country Rap is a popular way for emerging artists to team up with their idols, which in itself is a raw and emotional experience that fans love to be witness to!
6. Country Rap has really never gone anywhere
While Country Rap seems to be making a crazy big comeback, RapTV reminds us that it has never really gone anywhere. In fact, rap and country music singers have been teaming up to create perfect mashups for decades! It just happens to be that there is a new stream of mainstream music fans who are discovering the magic of Country Rap and becoming the next generation to become obsessed with it! Country Rap seems to have topped the charts only in recent years with Lil Nas X teaming up with Billy Ray Cyrus to produce Old Town Road. But even in 1985 rappers like Sir Mix-A-Lot found his true groove with Country Rap, dropping one of the hottest tracks of the year titled Square Dance Rap. And then there was Ghetto Cowboys by Mo Thugs the following decade, which won top Rap Song at the Billboard Music Awards! It really was these early trendsetters that set the stage for decades to come!
So, to answer the question, is Country Rap making a comeback? Yes, but it is coming back bigger than ever before! Country Rap at this rate is here to stay for decades more to come, with more generations falling in love with this amazing genre as the years go on. We can’t wait to watch Country Rap continue its rise in future decades to come and for more epic collaborations with singers from both genres producing more chart topping bangers!