“Country” In The Spotlight. What Will It Influence Next?

Country is having a major moment. I’m going out on a limb here but I predict we’ll see “Country” influences showing up over the next year in everything from fashion to entertainment to art, and even travel with more of us plotting our itineraries to follow the Ken Burns’ “Country Music” trail.

I’m a firm believer in the Rule of Three when it comes to declaring something an emerging trend. In this instance, I have at least five strong examples that indicate “country” will be inspiring designers and lifestyle brands for the next year or two.

Rule of Five:
  • Ken Burns’ Country Music documentary series on PBS. It’s been a knockout success. A sure-fire sign of its impact, a huge uptick on Amazon and iTunes of decades-old albums by artists featured on the show. Likewise, the photo archives from the series will, I predict, show up on many designers’ mood boards.
  • Oklahoma on Broadway,reimagined for the 21st Century,” is breathtakingly beautiful and unbelievably sexy. I finally saw it this past week (thank you Rob and Shawn) and all I can say is WOW! Daniel Fish, the director, is a genius. Best revival ever. And jeans, western shirts, buckles, and cowboy hats have never looked hotter. You MUST watch this 2-minute video of my favorite song from the show.
  • Kanye West recently bought a $14MM ranch outside of Cody, Wyoming. He also held the listening party for his new album there.
  • Rappers are getting into Country. Lil Nas X broke Billboard records with his hit “Old Town.” He even signed a deal with Wrangler. Meanwhile, Post Malone headlined 2019’s Bonnaroo Festival rocking an outfit inspired by Dolly Parton. (Pics below)
  • NYC fashionistas are sporting Western Wear. This weekend, I ran into a gorgeous Brit (pic above) wearing a cowboy hat which he tells me is all the rage in London. Who knew? But he looks amazing. Randomly, this same weekend, I saw an old-timer from the Lower East Side, wearing his cowboy hat at Whole Foods (very prescient with his style choices, see pic below). Stores like Filson are increasingly sought out for their western fashions and home goods. This summer in Denver I also discovered Rockmount Ranch Wear which carries authentic Western Wear (I bought a gorgeous belt there!). It’s a shopping destination for many performers and celebrities including Brandi Carlile. It’s also where everyda Coloradans shop. During my visit, a group of teens was trying on cowboy shirts. I realize now they may have been inspired by Lil Nas X.
Scroll down for photos. It’s Worth it, I promise.
Ken Burns’ Country Music delivers major style.
Daniel Fish’s Oklahoma – So Hot!!
Kanye and family in Wyoming
Rappers go country.
Lil Nas X
Post Malone wearing Dolly Parton shirt and pants
Fashionistas embrace country
If you like Jack’s style, follow him on Instagram: jackbradad
Old-time Hipster on the LES
Rockmount Ranch Wear where celebs and performers shop, e.g. Steve Buscemi, David Alan Grier, Brandi Carlile, Dylan, Tom Brady, The Killers, John Legend and many more.

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