The Top Country Artists of All Time

Originally By 43k votes 2.5k voters 73k views 237 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Only country singers or bands. No other genres

One of the most distinct and popular American art forms is country music. The origins of country music began in mostly rural areas as simply a person's words sung over an acoustic guitar. From that simple formula rose folk heroes who eventually became cultural icons. The top country music artists of all time are some of the most revered figures in music history. This poll of the greatest country musicians spans from classic country to contemporary country music - from Nashville to Texas.  

The biggest country artists have had their lives immortalized both in their records and in film. Johnny Cash is a prime example of a country artist who has appealed to people from every walk of life. On top of the 2005 movie made about him, the Man in Black released 55 albums and six albums, working tirelessly until his death in 2003. Willie Nelson is one of the living legends in country music. He continues to tour and entertain fans throughout the country even as he get older. He loves touring and fans loves going out to see him sings his vast catalog of hits. 

There are a lot of great names on this Ultimate List of the Top Country Artists of All Time. Many of these musicians are extremely popular with fans and critically acclaimed. So it's up to you to decide who deserves to be named the best country music artist ever.
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  • 25 ReRanks
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  1. 1
    + 772
    - 267

    the people's #1
    Outlaw country, Christian music, Americana

    ;
  2. 2
    + 671
    - 219


    Country

    ;
  3. 3
    + 568
    - 214


    Outlaw country, Western music, Folk music

    ;
  4. 4
    + 526
    - 218

    most listed
    Country

    ;
  5. 5
    + 509
    - 170


    Outlaw country, Bakersfield sound, Country

    ;
  6. 6
    + 505
    - 223


    Outlaw country, Americana, Traditional pop music

    ;
  7. 7
    + 511
    - 188


    Outlaw country, Country rock, Progressive country

    ;
  8. 8
    + 440
    - 252


    Country pop, Rock music, Country rock

    ;
  9. 9
    + 389
    - 186


    Ballad, Country pop, Pop music

    ;
  10. 10
    + 469
    - 164

    ranked low on reranks
    Country, Neotraditional country

    ;
  11. 11
    + 353
    - 191


    Rock and roll, Country

    ;
  12. 12
    + 394
    - 197


    Rock music, Swing music, Rockabilly

    ;
  13. 13
    + 356
    - 187


    Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  14. 14
    + 341
    - 177


    Honky-tonk, Alternative country, Gospel music

    ;
  15. 15
    + 264
    - 163


    Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  16. 16
    + 324
    - 183


    Outlaw country, Country rock, Country

    ;
  17. 17
    + 333
    - 174


    Christian music, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  18. 18
    + 282
    - 154


    Gospel music, Country, Neotraditional country

    ;
  19. 19
    + 292
    - 208


    Country, Southern rock

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  20. 20
    + 272
    - 154


    Country

    ;
  21. 21
    + 239
    - 161


    Country

    ;
  22. 22
    + 263
    - 119

    ranked low on reranks
    Country pop, Country rock, Country

    ;
  23. 23
    + 241
    - 177


    Pop music, Rockabilly, Rock and roll

    ;
  24. 24
    + 240
    - 140
    ;
  25. 25
    + 224
    - 159


    Nashville sound, Country

    ;
  26. 26
    + 235
    - 161


    Americana, Rock music, Country rock

    ;
  27. 27
    + 237
    - 141


    Rockabilly, Country rock, Country

    ;
  28. 28
    + 186
    - 154


    Pop music, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  29. 29
    + 223
    - 170


    Country pop, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  30. 30
    + 168
    - 115


    Adult contemporary music, Country pop, Country

    ;
  31. 31
    + 183
    - 133


    Blue-eyed soul, Country pop, Nashville sound

    ;
  32. 32
    + 205
    - 128


    Pop music, Country rock, Country

    ;
  33. 33
    + 191
    - 127

    added by hwy60
    Outlaw country, Rock music, Heavy metal

    ;
  34. 34
    + 214
    - 154


    Country pop, Pop music, Contemporary Christian music

    ;
  35. 35
    + 228
    - 167


    Country

    ;
  36. 36
    + 178
    - 107


    Country

    ;
  37. 37
    + 196
    - 96

    ranked low on reranks
    Bakersfield sound, Country

    ;
  38. 38
    + 180
    - 109

    added by hwy60
    Blue-eyed soul, Country pop, Bluegrass

    ;
  39. 39
    + 218
    - 149


    Outlaw country, Rock music, Folk music

    ;
  40. 40
    + 149
    - 97


    Country

    ;
  41. 41
    + 158
    - 123


    Christian music, Pop music, Gospel music

    ;
  42. 42
    + 142
    - 127


    Vocal harmony, Country

    ;
  43. 43
    + 147
    - 100


    Outlaw country, Country

    ;
  44. 44
    + 160
    - 118


    Western music, Pop music, Traditional music

    ;
  45. 45
    + 168
    - 96

    ranked low on reranks
    Country

    ;
  46. 46
    + 129
    - 116


    Folk music, Jazz, Country

    ;
  47. 47
    + 132
    - 120


    Blues-rock, Country rock, Country

    ;
  48. 48
    + 165
    - 143


    Rockabilly, Country

    ;
  49. 49
    + 215
    - 168


    Country

    ;
  50. 50
    + 125
    - 112


    Country

    ;
238 +

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