Country Queer

Lifting up LGBTQ+ voices in country and Americana.

Ismay Country Queer Ad

Buried Treasure, September 11

Cameron Hawthorn, Olivia Lloyd, Al Riggs, Phillipa Cookman, Chris Housman

By Adeem Bingham, Editor

Buried Treasure

Happy Friday, y’all! I have really been looking forward to all of the side roads that reading about folx who are new to me leads me down. I found myself on a baffling array of wikipedia pages – getting lost and becoming a fan of practically every new thing.

This week we’ve got a whole gaggle of new artists for you to fawn over from Los Angeles, Brooklyn, Durham, London, Nashville; it’s quite the spread. Stay safe, drink lots of water, and keep your eyes peeled for buried treasures.

Your pal, Adeem

Cameron Hawthorn

Cameron Hawthorn is an LA based Country artist. He released his debut song “Dancing in the Living Room” last year in March which received attention from major music publications but now he’s promising a new EP on the horizon. He’s closer to Eric Church than Waylon Jennings on the spectrum but presents a smooth, pop-country sound with all the finesse and sentimentality of a Gay Country heart throb. His new single “To Break Hers” is a harrowing reflection on the painful realities of realizing your sexuality while in a committed heteronormative relationship and it’s streaming everywhere now. 

Olivia Lloyd

Olivia is a sentimental Americana songwriter from West Virginia who recently put out a new single called “Emily” in expectation of a 2021 full-length. As can be expected from someone who writes “Country Music for people with Feelings,” the song is full of poetry born from raw loss and longing. It is sonically a very crisp production- tight, Nashville-sound with a band that knows well when to play and leave space for her emotive vocal performance. This self-proclaimed “Brooklyn based Hillbilly” as a lot of heart and she’s sharing it wastefully so dive in. You can stream “Emily” below or add it to your playlists on your preferred platforms.

Al Riggs

Al Riggs is a prolific, non-binary songwriter based out of Durham, NC. They’ve released a plethora of songs from a diversity of sound and influence, have toured with The Mountain Goats, and are working on a Country album for 2021. Currently, however, they’re gearing up to release a new album called Bile and Bone with collaborator Lauren Francis that looks to channel all of that sweet John Vanderslice energy into a delicious little collection of dark, brooding, story-driven songs. It’s set to go live next Friday but you can preorder now and stream a pair of lead singles.

Phillipa Cookman

Phillipa is a London-based artist and daughter of the late Brian Cookman- one of Britain’s premier purveyors of the Delta Blues. During the quarantine, she has channeled her creative energy into revisiting her fathers’ songs and coloring them with her own sound. The collection as a whole is vibrant and a touching homage to her father, though my personal favorite is “Greasy Mabel.” The song imagines Phillipa as a truck driver falling in love with a waitress on her route and it is streaming here or wherever you listen to music.

Chris Housman

Chris is releasing music with all the juicy pop accoutrements of that modern Country radio sound. His new single is called “Tomorrow, Tonight” and opens with a backbeat and a simple guitar lick. It’s a pretty solid anthem for the long, waning days of the Pandemic with an adorable homemade quarantine music video to accompany. “What’s important is you and me here on this couch” is also an apt summary of how many of us have spent the last six months or so. Streaming now wherever you listen to music.

“Buried Treasure” is your bi-weekly guide to under-the-radar queer artists in country, Americana, and folk. Know an artist who should be included? Contact us!