This song was released in September 2004 and appeared as the second single on Nelly’s fourth album, Suit. Gaining popularity after its release, it peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100.
This country/rap collaboration first saw the light of day in 2011. You wouldn’t think these two artists have much in common considering their musical genres, but both men were raised in Georgia and have a history of chasing down girls. Aldean’s original recording of the song, without a guest verse from Luda reached number seven on the Billboard Hot 100.
Upon first glance it seems unlikely that these two artists would be paired up, however, the two released their duet “Superman,” which appeared on Snoop’s Doggumentary album in March 2011. As both men are strong advocates of legalizing marijuana, of course, this ended up being the main subject of the song.
Nelly has landed on two spots on the list, with his earlier hit “Over and Over” featuring Tim McGraw and this more recent track that appeared as the first single from Florida Georgia Line’s debut album Here’s to the Good Times in August 2012. The song, which is about cruising in a car with a beautiful woman, peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100.
This song was performed by Taylor Swift and T-Pain at the CMT Awards in June 2009 and was a parody of Swift’s song “Love Story,” which was released in September 2008. The original song reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100. Swift raps on the track, alongside the Auto-tune stylings of T-Pain, saying things like “still live with my parents but I’m still a thug” and “I’m so gangster you can find me baking cookies at night.” Hardly gangsta, if you ask me.
Cowboy Troy featuring Big N’ Rich with “I Play Chicken with the Train”
This artist performs under the musical genre, country/rap, and released this track, which was included on his album Loco Motive, in April 2005. Big N’ Rich is featured on the single’s chorus and is paired with Troy’s rap verses, slick with a hint of country twang.
Colt Ford featuring Jake Owen with “Back”
Ford is also considered a country/rap artist and has released several songs that incorporate elements of both musical categories. One of his most recent duets with another country artist is “Back,” which features Jake Owen and appears as the second single on Ford’s fourth album, Declaration of Independence. The song touches on the nostalgia from one’s childhood, when life was “simple.”
Country/Rap Gone Bad
Brad Paisley featuring LL Cool J with “Accidental Racist”
This controversial song, which features a verse from LL Cool J, received mixed reception when it came out in April 2013 as part of Paisley’s ninth studio album, Wheelhouse. The country singer released the track attempting to bridge the gap between white and black folk, but ultimately he ended up sounding somewhat racist.
Buck 22 featuring Billy Ray Cyrus with “Achy Breaky 2”
This is probably the worst country/rap collaboration ever. Nevertheless, it exists. The track was released in February of this year and is Buck 22’s attempt at remaking Cyrus’ 1992 original track “Achy Breaky Heart.” Back when Cyrus first released the song it reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100. It was also his debut single from his first album, Some Gave All, and is still his most popular song to date.
The country and rap worlds have been colliding over the past decades with artists from both genres interested in collaboration. Just like any experimentation, it can result in a mess or may produce a desirable outcome. The question is, have these collaborations produced any worthy tracks or have they all been failed attempts?
Over the past decade country singers have been wandering into the territories of hip-hop and rap music. Funny thing is, rappers don’t seem to mind, especially rappers like Nelly, Ludacris and T-Pain. With several artists from each category hailing from regions like Nashville and Atlanta, where country and rap is popular, there may be more similarities between the two genres than one might think.
When considering both genres, they each offer up similar song structures, which allow the artist to tell a story and give them a platform to speak from about their beliefs.
While combining the two musical styles may seem unusual, they actually complement each other quite adequately at times to form harmonious concoctions enjoyable for each fanbase. However, this formula isn’t always foolproof and can result in a train wreck of a song as well.
The flurry of country and rap partnerships in the past decade has also inspired the creation of the subgenre country/rap, which has seen artists, such as Cowboy Troy and Colt Ford emerge.
Curiosity from these opposite sides of the musical spectrum continues to develop and has led to some pretty worthy country/rap tracks. Some work really well, while others not so much. See for yourself with this list of the top five country/rap collaborations from the past decade.