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The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Beyoncé topped country music charts: Here’s a playlist of Black women artists in country music

In honor of Beyoncé’s groundbreaking country singles, here are my favorite country songs by Black women artists
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Lilly Crist
Timeline of Beyoncè’s eight — soon to be nine — studio albums.

Beyoncé is officially the first Black woman artist to top the Hot Country Charts following the release of two country singles, “Texas Hold ‘Em” and “16 Carriages.” In celebration of Black History Month, “Texas Hold ‘Em” still sitting at No. 1 and Beyoncé once again making history, here is a playlist full of amazing country songs from Black women.

“Texas Hold ‘Em” by Beyoncé

Beyoncé released this laid-back, R&B-inspired country song during the Super Bowl on Feb. 11, and I’ve been bouncing my foot to the banjo intro since. It’s playful, rustic and fresh, and the rich vocals and heartbeat-type rhythm reminds me of swing dancing with my family in my childhood living room. Oh, and a fun fact: its 110 BPM is perfect for performing CPR, too.

“16 Carriages” by Beyoncé

Beyoncé simultaneously released this song alongside “Texas Hold ‘Em,” but with a different atmosphere. “16 Carriages” is a beautiful country ballad I wouldn’t be surprised to hear a tearful karaoke rendition of in a small bar. The vulnerable lyrics are close-to-heart, describing everything Beyoncé had to overcome on her journey to fame with powerful narration and vocals.

“All the Sweet Tea” by Denitia

Denitia has a talent for sharing the warmth of summer through her music, and “All the Sweet Tea” is no different. This song brims with love and longing, described with a soft, traveling spirit and appreciation for nature. This song is perfect for both slow dancing in the kitchen and missing someone from the past. 

“Mama, Dolly, Jesus” by Madeline Edwards

Mama, Dolly, and Jesus: the three pinnacles of classic country music. This song is upbeat, modern and sassy. With lyrics like “I can’t pay my rent with your two cents,” this empowering anthem is a confident declaration that if you aren’t one of those three, Edwards doesn’t care what you have to say.

“What are you gonna tell her?” by Mickey Guyton

Guyton described this ballad as a call to action, stressing the heartbreak kids face when they grow up and don’t have the same opportunities as others. Whether it’s discrimination based on gender, race, economic class or more, this heartfelt song is a unifying force, calling us to find answers and make the change the questions ask for so these issues don’t hurt future generations. 

“Better Than You Left Me” by Mickey Guyton

This powerful post-breakup waltz reminds us that sometimes we’re better off with the people who left us behind. In the song, the singer turns down a previous lover who wants her back, describing the heartbreak when he left but the power she found in herself after he was gone. It’s an inspiring, sincere and empowering country anthem.

“Highways” by Denitia

“Highways” is a soft song about moving forward and taking pieces of the past with you. Despite its melancholic undertones, the song feels light, like an early morning stroll. It brings me a sense of nostalgia and reminds me that it’s okay to make mistakes as long as I’m still moving forward.

“The Wolves” by Madeline Edwards

“The Wolves” is another confident, sassy anthem from Edwards, this time declaring that nothing can break her. It’s a defiant blend of pop, country and empowering vocals that gives me chills and reminds me that having faith in yourself is much more powerful than any force opposing you.

“Feel Like Going Home” by Miko Marks

This jazzy country song is full of soul and charm, and honestly, despite the nostalgia, it makes me excited for things yet to come. In the song, she sings about wanting to go home, but in an optimistic sense, excited to go wherever home is in the future.

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About the Contributor
Kaitlynn Faber, arts & culture editor
A&C editor for spring 2024. Previously asst. A&C editor for fall 2023 and writer for 2022-23.
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