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“The star could open the doors of country music in the UK” – FBC News

“The star could open the doors of country music in the UK” – FBC News

[Source: BBC]

“Okay, they're ready. Drop the new music.”

As millions tuned in to the Super Bowl to watch the Kansas City Chiefs win, Usher on roller skates and the final chapter of the Taylor Swift-Travis Kelce love story, it was this announcement from Beyoncé that got the BeyHive buzzing.

The second part of her Renaissance project is on the way and she dropped two singles right away to give clues about its direction.

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Both “Texas Hold 'Em” and “16 Carriages” are country songs, suggesting that the entire album, which will be released next month, will also be a country song — a first for Beyoncé.

British country artist Kezia Gill tells BBC Newsbeat that the genre “has a bit of a stereotype that it's all about dancing and cowboys.”

But if anyone can change that, it should be someone with as much star power as Beyoncé, she believes.

“Big artists like Beyoncé are bringing country music to the forefront, and this will open the doors wide for us,” Kezia says.

The singer from Derby feels Beyoncé's presence could make the genre “accessible to everyone”.

“I think what's really funny is that a lot of people will listen and think Beyoncé invented this whole thing.

“But if it could bring in an entire generation, it would be amazing.”

Beyoncé's announcement comes shortly after Lana Del Rey confirmed that her debut country album Lasso was in the works earlier in February.

Another UK-based artist, Jess Thristan, feels that releasing prominent female country music artists is essential to the growth of the genre, especially for women who hope to break through.

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Taylor Swift's 2008 country pop album Fearless is credited with making the genre more relatable to young people.

Its re-recorded version, Fearless (Taylor's version), is currently number one on the Official UK Country Artist Albums Chart, but overall Jess feels the genre is “very stereotypically male-dominated”.

“In the UK, we have an amazing list of [upcoming] The country's female artists.

“I think we're trying to break that stereotype and mold of traditional male country artists and show everyone what women do.

“If there's anyone listening to Beyonce and Lana's new songs, thinking this has unlocked something in me, go to a country show in the UK,” says Jess, from Halifax.