35 Songs That Prove Country and Rock ‘n’ Roll Go Hand in Hand
With Dolly Parton's early 2023 induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, it's clearer than ever that the rock and country genres have quite a bit of common DNA.
Despite the fact that Parton has yet to release a rock album per se — she's currently at work on one, called Rock Star, which will feature an array of legendary special guests like Cher and Stevie Nicks — there are plenty of country artists who have dabbled in the rock world, and vice versa.
The bonds between the two genres date back pretty much to the beginnings of rock 'n' roll itself. When Elvis Presley walked into Memphis' Sun Studios that fateful first day in 1954, the songs he cut both took cues from the country format, and one of those songs even made it onto our list of the all-time best country-rock tracks.
Another rock pioneer, Jerry Lee Lewis, always kept one foot in the country genre: So much so that in late 2022, shortly before he died, he was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
The 1960s, 1970s and beyond have seen plenty more great mashups between the two genres, but country-rock music is far more than just a history lesson. On the contrary, it's alive and well on country radio today: Jason Aldean and Brothers Osborne are two major country acts who have incorporated rock elements since the very start. Another relative newcomer, Hardy, released a whole album dedicated to his love for both genres, called The Mockingbird & the Crow.
Scroll through the gallery below for Taste of Country's countdown of the greatest country rock songs ever. With so many incredible songs to choose from, it's inevitable that some great ones didn't make the cut — so sound off in the comments section about your favorite country rock songs and let us know what we missed!