Country music often focuses on small-town people and their love of the land and fellow people in their hometowns. There have been many songs in the country over the years paying homage to the small town and hometowns, including Miranda Lambert’s 2007 song “Famous In A Small Town.” Eric Church scored a hit in 2014 with “Give Back My Hometown.”
Miranda’s 2007 song’s lyrics include, “Whether you’re late for church / Or you’re stuck in jail / Hey, word’s gonna get around / Everybody dies famous in a small town / Well, baby, who needs their faces in a magazine? / Me and you, we’ve been stars in this town since we were seventeen.”
Carrie Underwood also sings of the charm of small towns in her 2012 chart-topper “Thank God For Hometowns,” and it is hard to forget one of Montgomery Gentry’s biggest hit over twenty years ago in 2002, “My Hometown.”
The Cambridge Dictionary defines small towns as “small social groups where ordinary people live.” The US Census Bureau determines a small town with a population between 25,000 and 50,000. It is slightly smaller than the average suburb, which is defined as a community within an urban area with between 30,000 and 70,000 residents.
What is fun in country music today is that many of today’s big stadium headliners, like Luke Combs and Morgan Wallen, play for crowds bigger than the populations of the towns they were born in. As we pay tribute to hometowns, we look at five country superstars playing to audiences each night bigger than their hometowns.