Country Proud is a country music–focused showcase series from RNBW, a collective of Nashville’s LGBTQ+ performers, songwriters, and musicians founded in 2016 with the goal of creating an inclusive space for all music lovers. During this program, Country Proud co-founders Emily and Jamie Dryburgh discuss the organization’s history, goals, and impact with the Museum’s Angela Stefano Zimmer, and singer-songwriters Shelly Fairchild, Angie K, Sonia Leigh, and Adam Mac perform and share their experiences as queer artists in country music. This program was recorded on April 8, 2023.
Raised in a musical family in Jackson, Mississippi, Shelly Fairchild is working on her first album for the independent record label Kill Rock Stars, nearly twenty years after she was signed to Columbia Records in 2004 and earned a Top Forty single with her song “You Don’t Lie Here Anymore.” During the show, she performs her songs “Damn Good Lover” and “House on Fire.”
Angie K, who was born in El Salvador and moved to Georgia with her family as a child, is part of CMT’s 2023 Next Women of Country class, was named a Highway Find by the SiriusXM channel The Highway in 2020, and competed on the TV singing competition “The Voice” in 2016. For this program, she performs her songs “Laredo” and “Red Dirt on Mars.”
Sonia Leigh, originally from Georgia, wrote Zac Brown Band’s #1 singles “Goodbye in Her Eyes” and “Sweet Annie” and was previously signed as a solo artist to Zac Brown’s Southern Ground Artists record label. She also performs hip-hop as ELVYN:ELYVN and is part of the grunge-pop act Rob the Man. She sings “Sweet Annie” and “Booty Call” during this program.
Adam Mac, originally from Russellville, Kentucky, has been described by “People” as “country music’s very own Elton John with a little Dua Lipa mixed in.” During this event, he performs “The One That Got Away” and “Boy Like Me,” tracks from his second album, “Disco Cowboy.”
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