Country Queer

Lifting up LGBTQ+ voices in country and Americana.

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CQ Roundup, March 30th

By Sara Gougeon

Leith Ross

This week we’ve rounded up new music from Leith Ross, Jaime Wyatt, Jake Wesley Rogers, Palmyra, Allison Russell, Michelle Malone, Reilly Downes, and more. Saddle up and enjoy the ride!

— Sara

Song of the Week: “We’ll Never Have Sex,” Leith Ross

“We’ll Never Have Sex” by Leith Ross is a tender lullaby, filled with simplicity, creative phrasing, and a captivating melody. Ross’s hushed voice pours intimate sounds over their intricate guitar arrangements. Lyrics like “Oh you kissed me just to kiss me / Not to take me home” center the story around a love that prioritizes being with them over a roll in the hay. The video takes us back to middle school — innocent, creative, and nostalgic.

“Need Shelter,” Jaime Wyatt 

“Need Shelter,” written by Neal Casal, was covered by Jaime Wyatt on the 3-CD/5-LP tribute album box set, Highway Butterfly: The Songs Of Neal Casal. Casal and Wyatt were close friends who worked together over the years until Casal’s death in 2019. The music video is well-produced, engaging, and, as expected with Jaime, filled with stunning fashion. Watch all the way through: you don’t want to miss the roller rink scene! 


A Honky-Tonk of Our Own

“Lavender Forever,” Jake Wesley Rogers 

Queer icon Jake Wesley Rogers just released “Lavender Forever.” This tune will stick in your head for days. The video is majestic and gives gay fairy vibes.

“Park Bench,” Palmyra

Palmyra’s music explores the fusion of traditional folk string instruments and three-part harmonies. This live outdoor take of “Park Bench,” brought to you from Floyd County, Virginia, is breathtaking. The lyrics are carefully crafted with lines like “Flip a coin with your strange hands / Not quite women / Not quite man / It might land somewhere in the middle / Or somewhere out of reach.” Sasha in the band shared with us, “the song is an honest and vulnerable reflection of how far I’ve come and how much further I have to go until I feel safe and secure in my own skin.” 

“Fourth Day Prayer (Jimmy Kimmel Live),” Allison Russell 

This video of Allison Russell performing “Fourth Day Prayer” last week on Jimmy Kimmel Live captures her divine energy, strong stage presence, and engaging vocals. Featuring queer country artist Joy Clark on guitar.

“Even the Queen,” Michelle Malone

Rock artist Michelle Malone recently released a sparkly single, “Even the Queen”: “Nothing is exactly what it seems / Even the queen has dreams.” Electric guitars riff and vocals soar, repeating a memorable melody. Stay tuned for Michelle’s upcoming album 1977 on April 22, 2022. 

“Spent,” Reilly Downes

Reilly Downes is a queer alt-country artist from the Texas Hill Country who is now based in Chicago. Her song “Spent” focuses on a relationship, as much of her writing does. Her debut album is set to release this summer. Enjoy a taste of her sad cowgirl music! 

New & Noteworthy:

Chandler Carter – “Cold” 

Laura Sawosko – “Not Your Reason”

The Po’ Ramblin’ Boys – “Take My Ashes to the River” 

Got a great new song? Submit it to CQ!