Country music has emerged as an unstoppable force, dominating the year-end charts for 2023. Morgan Wallen, crowned as Apple Music's top global artist, spearheaded this triumph with his chart-topping hit, "Last Night." The song not only claimed the pinnacle of the Billboard year-end Hot 100 but also secured the spot as the most streamed track globally on both Apple Music and Spotify in the United States.
Wallen's influence extended across multiple charts, with five of his songs in the top 50 on U.S. Spotify, 11 in the top 100 on U.S. Apple Music, and eight on the year-end Billboard Hot 100. His remarkable feat includes leading the Billboard year-end Hot 100 Artists chart, marking a significant milestone as the first country artist to achieve this since 1981.
Luke Combs and Zach Bryan also contributed to the country music dominance, with Combs' "Fast Car" securing the eighth spot on the year-end Hot 100. However, amidst this success, some right-wing anthems managed to make an impact on the charts.
Notably, hits like Jason Aldean's "Try That in a Small Town" and Oliver Anthony's "Rich Men North of Richmond" ranked No. 66 and No. 78, respectively, on the Billboard year-end Hot 100, signaling a unique intersection of country music and right-wing sentiment.
In a surprising turn of events, Morgan Wallen outperformed even Taylor Swift on several year-end charts, emphasizing the expanding influence of country music. Wallen's album "One Thing at a Time" claimed the top spot on the Billboard 200 year-end albums chart, surpassing Swift's "Midnights" at No. 2. This accomplishment, coupled with Wallen's previous release, "Dangerous: The Double Album," securing the fifth spot on the year-end albums chart, solidifies his standing in the industry.
The year 2023 marks an era where country music, led by the uncancellable Morgan Wallen, asserts its dominance. Simultaneously, the presence of right-wing hooks in songs by artists like Jason Aldean and Oliver Anthony signals a new chapter in the evolving landscape of counter-culture right-wing country music.