Playlist

Country Songs for Disco Lovers

Country music had a moment with disco in the late 1970s, and it’s been having it on and off again ever since. From Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton’s ‘Islands in the Stream’ to Kacey Musgraves’ ‘High Horse’, there's something for every disco fan in our playlist of Country Songs for Disco Lovers.

Holler Country Music

Country music had a moment with disco in the late 1970s, and it’s been having it on and off again ever since. From Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton’s ‘Islands in the Stream’ to Kacey Musgraves’ ‘High Horse’, there's something for every disco fan in our playlist of Country Songs for Disco Lovers.

May 9, 2023 3:09 pm GMT
Last Edited May 10, 2023 10:15 am GMT

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Here at the Holler offices, we’re all too familiar with hearing the same old “Anything but country” response when it comes to people talking about what sort of music they’re into. But we’re making it our mission to go out into the world and change that.

With its origins in Philadelphia’s R&B scene and the dance parties thrown in New York City's underground gay community in the late 60s and early 70s, disco might seem like an unlikely bedfellow for the relative conservatism of country music, but country's also never been afraid of hitting the dancefloor and kicking up its heels either.

From the barn dances of the 1930s through to western swing dances in the 50s and on to the line dancing craze of the 80s, country music has always been one-stepping and two-stepping out into the spotlight whenever the opportunity comes around.

Although it predates the modern pop age by a good 30 years or more, country has always ensured its continued popularity and relevance by absorbing whatever genre comes along to try to usurp it. In the 60s black soul music and lushly orchestrated teen pop had encouraged country to shape-shift into Countrypolitan and the Nashville Sound, and by the early-70s it was folk music and West Coast rock that was causing it to switch it up again. Soon the newest perceived threat was coming from disco, and it was time for country to soak it all up.

Beginning as celebration of sexuality and outsider culture in clubs like Studio 54 and Paradise Garage in New York City - which became safe spaces for self-expression for marginalised Black, queer and Latino communities - by the mid-1970s, disco had moved beyond the clubs and onto the airwaves, making stars out of Gloria Gaynor and Donna Summer in the process, until it peaked with the release of Saturday Night Fever and its soundtrack in 1977.

It was around this time that Dolly Parton left Nashville behind and took off for LA in search of pop crossover stardom. “I’m not leaving country behind, I’m just taking it with me,” she famously quipped to her detractors - and that’s exactly what she did.

Never a stranger to the dancefloor – Jerry Carrigan’s disco-ready four-on-the-floor rhythm on Dolly’s 1974 classic ‘Jolene’ had already proved she was more than capable of cutting it in the club – in 1977 Dolly released the pop country classic Here You Come Again, followed a year later by Heartbreaker, and brought the Smoky Mountains all the way down into the sweat-soaked nightclubs of urban America.

Country music was finally having its moment with disco, and it’s been having it on and off again ever since. From Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton’s ‘Islands in the Stream’ to Kacey Musgraves’ ‘High Horse’, there’s always been something incredibly unique about the way disco uses camp to turns its tragedy into empowerment, which taps so perfectly into the storytelling lyricism of country.

So, for those of you who dig Donna Summer but didn't think you could boogie to Bill Anderson, we’ve got a playlist that will send your disco fingers wild. It's mirror balls and neon lights, sequinned tops and sparkly rhinestone suits, it’s country and it’s disco and it’s the greatest night out you’ll ever have.

Check out the full tracklist below:

  1. 1.

    High Horse

    Kacey Musgraves

  2. 2.

    Kiss You All Over

    Millie Jackson

  3. 3.

    Southern Nights

    Glen Campbell

  4. 4.

    Islands in the Stream

    Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers

  5. 5.

    Tight Fittin' Jeans

    Conway Twitty

  6. 6.

    I Can't Wait Any Longer

    Bill Anderson

  7. 7.

    Sometime, Somewhere, Somehow

    Barbara Mandrell

  8. 8.

    Potential New Boyfriend

    Dolly Parton

  9. 9.

    Get It Up

    Ronnie Milsap

  10. 10.

    I Ain't Got No Business Doin' Business Today

    George Jones

  11. 11.

    If It Ain't Love (Let's Leave It Alone)

    Connie Smith

  12. 12.

    Jolene

    Olivia Newton-John

  13. 13.

    Tulsa Time

    Don Williams

  14. 14.

    Alone At Last

    Tony Joe White

  15. 15.

    One and Only One

    Eddie Rabbitt

  16. 16.

    A Lesson in Leavin'

    Dottie West

  17. 17.

    In and Out of Your Heart

    Kenny Rogers

  18. 18.

    Let Your Love Flow

    The Bellamy Brothers

  19. 19.

    Baby I'm Burnin' Disco Mix

    Dolly Parton

  20. 20.

    You Keep Me Hangin' On

    Reba McEntire

  21. 21.

    Dream, Girl

    Hailey Whitters

  22. 22.

    Dancing

    Kylie Minogue

  23. 23.

    VHS

    Thomas Rhett

  24. 24.

    Sweet Sunshine Wine

    Pearl Charles

  25. 25.

    You Can't Stop Me

    Brett Eldredge and Thomas Rhett

  26. 26.

    So Long (feat. Cam)

    Diplo

  27. 27.

    Cocaine Country Dancing

    Paul Cauthen

  28. 28.

    Why Don't We Just Sleep On It Tonight

    Glen Campbell and Tanya Tucker

  29. 29.

    We Should Be Together

    Crystal Gayle

  30. 30.

    Baby's Got Her Blue Jeans On

    Mel McDaniel

  31. 31.

    Drifter

    Sylvia

  32. 32.

    Two Doors Down

    Dolly Parton

  33. 33.

    Midnight Crazy

    Mac Davis

  34. 34.

    Night Games

    Charley Pride

  35. 35.

    Friday Night Fever

    George Strait

  36. 36.

    Trying to Love Two Women

    The Oak Ridge Boys

  37. 37.

    I've Always Been Crazy

    Waylon Jennings

  38. 38.

    Somebody's Knockin'

    Terri Gibbs

  39. 39.

    Dancin' Cowboys

    The Bellamy Brothers

  40. 40.

    Who's Cheatin' Who

    Charly McClain

  41. 41.

    Diggin' Up Bones

    Randy Travis

  42. 42.

    Gonna Have A Party

    Alabama

  43. 43.

    Friend, Lover, Wife

    Johnny Paycheck

  44. 44.

    I Got The Same Old blues

    Steve Young

  45. 45.

    Amos Moses

    Jerry Reed

  46. 46.

    Trudy

    The Charlie Daniels Band

  47. 47.

    Shake the Dust

    Steven Soles

  48. 48.

    She's A Mystery

    Kenny Rogers

  49. 49.

    On The Radio

    Emmylou Harris

  50. 50.

    That's the Way Love Goes

    Merle Haggard

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Written by Jof Owen
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