The widespread, genre-free appeal of country stars demonstrated by the 2020 Grammy nominations goes well beyond the expected success of Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus' "Old Town Road" and A Star is Born's Americana-heavy soundtrack.
One of popular culture's most transcendent stars, Dolly Parton, leads the way with two nominations outside of country music-specific categories.
"God Only Knows," which pairs Parton with Nashville-based duo for King & Country, earned a Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song nomination. For King & Country members Joel Smallbone and Luke Smallbone wrote the song with Josh Kerr, Jordan Reynolds and Tedd Tjornhom.
Parton and for King & Country performed "God Only Knows" as part of a medley of Christian songs on Nov. 13 at CMA Awards. She also sang excerpts from her EDM cover of John Hiatt's "Faith" featuring Swedish duo Galantis and Dutch rapper Mr. Probz and another recent collaboration, the Zach Williams duet "There Was Jesus."
Elsewhere on the ballot, Parton and co-writer Linda Perry scored a Best Song Written For Visual Media for "Girl in the Movies," a song from the Netflix original film Dumplin'.
Country music icon Bobbie Gentry joins fellow "Fancy" singer Reba McEntire as a 2020 Grammy nominee because The Girl From Chickasaw County - The Complete Capitol Masters is up for Best Historical Album.
In another less ballyhooed category, Texas country legend Terry Allen and his Panhandle Mystery Band's Pedal Steel + Four Corners netted a Best Album Notes nomination for folklorist and Paradise of Bachelors record label founder Brendan Greaves.
Even Steven Curtis Chapman's Grammy nomination for Best Roots Gospel Album feels like a win for country music, considering Ricky Skaggs and Gary LeVox both appear on Deeper Roots: Where the Bluegrass Grows.