Country music has been closely associated with southern conservative politics for decades, but recently a new wave of liberal country music singers have risen to the top of the industry. These singers often challenge traditional views and offer a unique alternative to conservative artists.
Chief among them is Kacey Musgraves, who earned her first Grammy in 2019 for her album Golden Hour. Musgrave’s lyrics often touch on topics such as female empowerment, LGBTQ rights and environmentalism – all issues that are typically viewed as more progressive than traditional country themes. She also made headlines when she featured a same-sex couple in her 2019 video for “Rainbow”.
In this article, we are going to highlight several of the most popular names in country music, and weeding out the ones that are notable more liberal and agree with democratic politics.
14 Liberal Country Music Singers that Tilt Democrat
It can be a surprise to hear such progressive messages in country music, but this new wave of liberal artists is helping to broaden the genre. In doing so, they are creating a more inclusive landscape and paving the way for future generations of diverse artists. Read on to learn more.
Taylor Swift has stepped up to speak out on various subjects such as LGBTQ rights, gender inequality, immigration reform and gun control.
Swift has been vocal in her support for progressive candidates during elections, thus making her one of the biggest names in country music with a more liberal outlook.
Faith Hill is no stranger to expressing her views on social change and human rights issues. In 2008 she joined forces with several other well-known singers to record a song called “Just Stand Up!,” which was created to raise funds for the fight against cancer.
She has also come out in support of gay rights and marriage equality.
Willie Nelson is known for advocating for legalization of marijuana and speaking out against the Iraq War. He is an environmentalist who also advocates strongly for animal rights, including joining organizations such as PETA and Farm Aid, both geared towards helping farmers affected by extreme hardship.
The Chicks (formerly Dixie Chicks)
This group’s liberal leanings became apparent when they publicly spoke out against George W. Bush’s 2003 invasion of Iraq during a concert in London, resulting in widespread backlash from country music fans.
Despite the controversy, they continued to speak out about things like same-sex marriage and gun control, making them a country music group with a liberal stance.
LeAnn Rimes has been vocal in her support for progressive causes such as LGBTQ rights, climate change awareness and protection of endangered species.
She is also an advocate for military service members and their families.
Sheryl Crow has advocated strongly for environmental causes such as solar power, alternative energy sources and renewable fuels.
She has also spoken out against war and violence in various songs over the years.
Tim McGraw was initially known for his more conservative views but recently he has stepped up to take a stand on issues such as gun control and the 2020 election.
He also advocates for mental health issues and environmental causes, making him one of the more liberal-leaning voices in country music.
Reba McEntire is well-known for advocating for gender equality in country music. She has been vocal about her support for gun control as well as social justice issues like racial equality, immigration reform and LGBTQ rights.
Garth Brooks is known to be one of the few country stars with a liberal viewpoint, speaking out against racism and supporting same-sex marriage.
In 2015 he was awarded the Human Rights Campaign’s National Equality Award due to his progressive views on these topics.
Emmylou Harris is a staunch advocate for animal rights, lending her voice to organizations like the Humane Society of the United States and Farm Sanctuary.
She continues to speak out on various social issues such as immigration reform, gun control and racism.
Kacey Musgraves has been outspoken about which political candidates she supports while at the same time speaking out against intolerance and hatred in any form. She is an advocate for marriage equality as well as environmental causes such as renewable energy sources, conservation efforts and more sustainable living practices.
Johnny Cash was known for being an outspoken advocate of civil rights and other political issues. He recorded songs protesting the Vietnam War, advocating prison reform, and supporting Native American causes. His cover of “The Man Comes Around” is a haunting reflection on the state of modern America.
Kris Kristofferson is one of country music’s most outspoken progressive stars when it comes to politics. He is an advocate for social justice and has been vocal about his support for women’s rights, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, environmental protection and alternative energy sources.
Rosanne Cash has been outspoken about her views on gun control, racial equality and immigration reform. She often speaks out in favor of progressive causes such as protecting the environment from pollution and advocating for Native American rights.
The Outspoken Liberals of Country Music
These country music stars are not afraid to express their liberal perspectives on various social issues. From supporting same-sex marriage to fighting for animal rights, they continue to use their platforms to support progressive causes that many in the country music community may not agree with.
By doing so, they help make sure that a variety of voices are heard and respected in country music — while also standing outside of the traditional norm of conservatism in the south.