Last week it was the Grammy awards getting us all excitable, this week it’s the Superbowl. The football was exciting enough, but it was the action off the field that got us up and out of our seats over at the Holler offices.
Reba McEntire performed the National Anthem, while Post Malone delivered a particularly countrified performance of ‘America The Beautiful,’ and Jelly Roll starred in Star in a hilarious Uber Eats Super Bowl Commercial alongside Jennifer Aniston and David Schwimmer.
It was Beyoncé who arguably stole the show though as she announced Part II of her Renaissance Trilogy during the Super Bowl LVIII game with a surprise commercial and a teaser clip posted to her Instagram. She followed by releasing two new songs, ‘Texas Hold ’Em’ and ‘16 Carriages,’ whereupon it immediately became apparent that the new album, due on March 29th, would be her long hoped for country record.
With new records from Post Malone, Lana Del Rey and now Beyoncé on the way, it seems like 2024 is shaping up to be the year that the whole world gone country, as AJ would say.
With that in mind, this week’s cover star is Lainey Wilson. The GRAMMY-award-winning singer songwriter and actress has dropped the timely ‘Country’s Cool Again’ after making a cameo in the new Coors Light commercial, which aired during the 2024 Super Bowl.
An ode to the 90s Country lifestyle, ‘Country’s Cool Again’ was co-written by the iconic, ‘Heart Wranglers,’ Trannie Anderson and Dallas Wilson, along with Wilson’s band leader Aslan Freeman, and produced by GRAMMY-award-winning producer, Jay Joyce.
“This past year has been a wild ride and truly shown me that Country music is really loving me back,” said Wilson about the song. “This track is an ode to my upbringing and the story of my journey in this industry - where I have been and where I am now. I’m feeling all the love from Country music fans, and I can’t wait to hear everyone singing this song back to me while we’re out on the road this year.”
She's our friend and she's crazy! Everybody’s favourite country kook, Sierra Ferrell follows up the wistful ‘Dollar Bill Bar’ and the raucous ‘Fox Hunt’ with another taste of her forthcoming album, Trail of Flowers, ahead of its release on March 22nd. This time she teases us with the self-effacing clippety-clop country singalong ‘I Could Drive You Crazy’ - a joyous shot of love, underlined by hollering harmonies, fiddle hooks and booming drums.
"I was hanging out with some friends, and we had an idea for a song where you're telling someone, 'I'm not good at this and I'm not good at that, but one thing I can do is drive you crazy,'" Sierra Ferrell says. "We decided to put in some audio of my New Year's Eve crowd at the end, so you can hear them howling on there. I always love getting everyone to howl at my shows - it's a good, free feeling."
Lola Kirke gets country curious on her new Elle King produced EP with six of the finest country songs you’ll hear all year, including a duet with Roseanne Cash, and Drake Milligan releases his highly anticipated Jukebox Songs EP.
“I’m so excited for everyone to hear Jukebox Songs,” says Milligan. “This project was a labor of love and brought out a new creative side of me. As an entertainer, there is nothing I love more than hearing people sing back to me at shows, and I can’t wait to perform these brand-new songs to audiences across the world this year.”
Holler will be front and centre when Drake Milligan returns to the Country to Country festival stages in Berlin, Rotterdam, Belfast, Glasgow and The O2 Arena in London in March. Read the full review of the album here.
It's a big week for albums too, and when it comes to Southern country rock they don’t get any bigger than Blackberry Smoke. Listening to Be Right Here feels like walking out of church on a Sunday morning into bright sunlight after listening to a particularly inspiring sermon on the simple joys of life. Produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb, it’s an impassioned reminder that the story of your life is yours to write, even if the ending has already been written.
Maggie Antone joins fellow rising artist Brendan Walter on the stately break up ballad ‘I Don’t Wanna Hear About It.’ The follow up to her ‘Suburban Outlaw’ single from last year will give country pop queens Kelsea Ballerini and Megan Moroney a reason to be shuffling about nervously on their thrones.
Tyler Hubbard drops ‘Wish You Would’ and announces that his sophomore album, Strong, is coming out on April 12th via EMI Nashville, while Josiah & the Bonnevilles and Warren Zeiders both give their albums the deluxe treatment and one of our Holler 24 for 2024 picks Redferrin releases his new Old No.7 EP. Read the full review here.
Maren Morris pops by with a suitably moody cover of Billy Idol’s ‘Dancing with Myself’ in celebration of Singles Awareness Day and gives us what would usually be the biggest surprise of the week. She wasn’t counting on one thing though: Pitbull.
Post Malone, Lana Del Rey and now Beyoncé aren’t the only ones making country cool again. Mr Worldwide jumps on the bandwagon with Trackhouse (Daytona 500 edition) and brings some heavy country hitters along for the ride. Dolly Parton and Tim McGraw both get given the full Pitbull treatment, while he pays tribute to a late country great on ‘Thank God & Jimmy Buffett.’
Dolly Parton is even rapping on one of these new Pitbull songs. See! Lainey said country was cool.
Check out this week's new country song releases and listen to the full playlist below:
Lola Kirke and Roseanne Cash
Maggie Antone and Brendan Walter
Wonder Women of Country
Josiah & the Bonnevilles
Creekbed Carter Hogan
The Secret Sisters
Slaughter Beach, Dog
Pitbull and Dolly Parton
Flo Rida and Brian Kelley
Eddie And The Getaway
Pitbull, Tim McGraw and Vikina
Drew Holcomb and Ellie Holcomb
Wildflowers and Easton
Taylor Austin Dye
Glen Campbell and Carole King
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For more of the finest country playlists from Holler, see below: