It is rare to find African-American country music signers topping the charts, but singers Rissi Palmer and Cowboy Troy are breaking that trend. "I know you aren't used to hearing an African-American … who is committed to country music, but country music, R&B and blues are so much alike—good music is good music, that's all I can say," Dr. Angelou says. Dr. Angelou talks with Rissi and Cowboy Troy about their success and their hope for their careers.
After years of trying to get a record deal in Nashville and turning down an R&B music career, Rissi says she is finally making her dreams of a country music career a reality. She's the first black woman in 20 years to have a song on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart, and Rissi says that is just the beginning. "I really am a testament to patience and perseverance because I wasn't sure that [my career] was going to happen," she says. "I just always believed that there is nothing else on this earth that I am supposed to do but make [country] music."
Cowboy Troy has also found success after years of struggle. He says his latest CD, Black in the Saddle, addresses some of the obstacles he faced while trying to break into country music. Now, Cowboy Troy says he would like to achieve even greater success in the industry and bring his "country rap" music to wider audiences.
"I hope to allow the public and allow the world to hear the songs that have been written and I've performed on a grand scale," he says. "I would like to do a world tour or two in the next few years. I would like to make sure that somehow or another, my music can serve as an ambassador of goodwill."