Post Malone Touts Tyler Childers, Colter Wall, Billy Strings

Yes, Post Malone. The rapper guy and pop star with all those tattoos on his face. He’s one of the biggest artists in all of popular music at the moment. And apparently, he’s a big fan of independent country music. Over the last few weeks he’s been caught repping guys you could list off as your 1A, 1B, and 1C of the fastest-rising artists in independent roots at the moment. We’re talking about Tyler Childers, Colter Wall, and Billy Strings. And who knows who might be next.

On November 1st, Post Malone appeared in an Instagram photo with a young basketball player from California named Noah Veluzat. The two were on some sort of movie or video shoot together. And lo and behold, Malone was rockin’ a Tyler Childers T-shirt.

Then on November 12th, bluegrass phenom Billy Strings posted a photo to Instagram with himself and Post Malone with the caption, “Redneck shit with my boy Post Malone #fuckaroundandfindout.” Not only does Post Malone know about Billy Strings, but apparently they’re collaborating in some capacity.

Then on Wednesday, November 18th, a costume designer named Catherine Hahn posted an Instagram photo of Post Malone wearing a Colter Wall T-shirt promoting some beer pong league Mr. Malone is involved with.

This is too many instances in too short of a time period for Post Malone’s love for independent country to not be sincere, or for something not to be afloat. Sure, 2019 saw the explosion of what was called the “Yeehaw Agenda” where hip-hop artists and pop stars were appropriating country and Western style attire such as cowboy hats, fringe and such as a cultural expression. But this seems to go deeper with Post Malone.

Post Malone’s love for classic country music has been well documented. He’s been carrying on a friendship with Dwight Yoakam since 2018, and appeared on Yoakam’s Sirius/XM Bakersfield channel. Here they are singing “1,000 Miles from Nowhere” together. He also played Bonnaroo in 2019 in a suit printed up with Dolly Parton’s face, and has said previously he wants to collaborate with George Strait. Sturgill Simpson has been saying he wants to produce a full instrumental album on Post Malone.

Granted, I’m not sure any of us should be advocating for Post Malone to cross over into country somehow and pull a Bebe Rexha, putting massive pop appeal behind a hit song and shadowing out artists native to the genre.

But without mainstream radio play or big awards, it takes word of mouth to make a sustainable career in independent country, or to rise to the level of “stardom.” You don’t get to choose who the influencers are that rep you on social media. From the start, Tyler Childers, Colter Wall, and now Billy Strings have enjoyed major shoutouts from massive stars that have helped put their careers on strong footing, just as Cody Jinks and Sturgill Simpson did before them.

The fact that someone like Post Malone, or Joe Rogan, or whomever else is out there talking about these artists that in previous eras would have gone mostly ignored in mainstream culture speaks to how resonant the music of these artists is, and how it’s ready for the wide masses. Sure, some fans will grumble about how the word getting out about their favorite independent artists will make the “scene” less cool. But it’s moments like these that make careers.

READ: Two Tyler Childers Singles Certified Gold

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