Country music artist Billy Gilman came
out gay in a YouTube video released Wednesday.
The 26-year-old Gilman made his
announcement on the same day as Ty
Herndon's coming out, making him the third openly gay country
music artist after Herndon and Chely Wright.
“It's taken me a good many weeks to
figure out how I was to approach this video that you're watching
right now. But today, actually, a fellow country artist and friend
made it easier for me to make this video,” Gilman said.
Gilman holds the distinction of being
the youngest artist ever to have a Top 40 country hit with the 2000
release of One Voice.
Gilman said that rumors about his
sexuality have dragged on his career.
“Being a gay male country artist is
not the best thing [for your career],” Gilman said. “If people
don't like your music, that's one thing, but after having sold over
five million records … I knew something was wrong when no major
label wanted to sit down and have a meeting and listen to the new
stuff. I did a showcase in Nashville and no major label showed.”
Gilman, who lives in Rhode Island,
added: “I know some people won't agree with this, and that's okay.
To each his own. But it was time for me to be honest.” (The video
is embedded on this page. Visit
our video library for more videos.)