The 5 Best Musicians from Montana (U.S.)

The state of Montana is famous for its unique offering of pioneer folk music, cowboy songs, and even folk-style poetry.

Montana has an impressive history of music appreciation, having supported different eras of music; from baroque to classical, to the romantic era, and its music industry has birthed various talented and creative singers.

In fact, two prestigious institutions of music; The Great Falls Symphony Orchestra, est. 1958, and the Bozeman Symphony Orchestra, est. 1963, are both found in this state.

And how best to enjoy the great ambiance of legendary musicians here if not by attending one of the exhilarating Montana concerts, where you can get introduced to music the Montana way. The “Big Sky” state also has a number of famous music stars and here are five of them.

5. Nicolette Larson

Nicolette Larson The 5 Best Musicians from Montana (U.S.)

Larson was the daughter of an employee of the U.S. Department of Treasury, and so her family moved often. But this instability did not stop her from pursuing a career in music. Born in the town of Helena, MT, this star was singing along to the radio as soon as she could talk.

The pop star got her first big break when she auditioned for Hoyt Axton, a renowned musician, in 1975. Hoyt was so impressed that he allowed her to feature on his albums ‘Commander Cody albums’ from 1975 to 1978.

Although, she died in 1997 from cerebral edema, as a result of liver failure; she still lives on her musical legacies. One of which is her cover of “Lotta Love” by Neil Young.

4. Jeff Ament

Jeff Ament The 5 Best Musicians from Montana (U.S.)

Birthed on 1963 in Havre, Montana, and grew up in the town of Big Sandy, Jeff Ament began playing the guitar as a teenager, and was introduced to the Rock scene by acts like “The Police”.

Over his teenage years, he was one of the members of the bands, “Deranged Diction”, “Mother Love Bone” and “Green River”.

In 1990, this Rock legend became one of the founding members of the band “Pearl Jam”. Within a space of ten years (2008-2018), he released three banging studio albums.

And in recognition of his musical prowess, Ament was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with the 2017 class.

3. Philip Aaberg

Philip Aaberg The 5 Best Musicians from Montana (U.S.)

Philip Aaberg, the famous pianist, and composer hailed from Montana. A throwback to the classical era, he was trained in classical music, but you would not know that from his sound.

His style incorporates jazz, rock, classical, bluegrass and other genres. He prefers giving solo piano performances, and his composition style is celebrated as diverse and colorful.

Aaberg started his record label in 2000, called “Sweetgrass Music”. Through this label, he has released several award-winning tracks.

In fact, the score he did for “Class C: The only game in town” won him an Emmy nomination, while his “Live from Montana” received a Grammy nomination.

2. Doug Adkins

Doug Adkins The 5 Best Musicians from Montana (U.S.)

Douglas “Doug” Adkins was born with a song on his lips. From a very young age, the Havre native had started exploring his musical talent by singing with his siblings.

And this dedication to his talent is obvious in the success of his music career. Between 1990 and 2016, the country music artist and songwriter released nine electrifying original studio albums.

One of those albums, “Whiskey Salesman”, contained tracks that were so good, and it went on to top several charts, including the European Hotdisc Top 40 Country Charts. In 2008, “Whiskey Salesman” track was also nominated for best country song of the year, by the Independent Music Awards.

1. Stephanie Quayle

The “Drinking with Dolly” crooner was born in 1982 and raised in the town of Bozeman. Stephanie started playing the piano at the tender age of four (4). And at the age of fifteen, she bought her first guitar which triggers her to join a band as a singer immediately.

The gorgeous looking country singer came into limelight in 2016, when she released her hit song “Drinking with Dolly”. This song went on to top the CMT and was on the Billboard Indicator Chart top 50.

Rolling Stone rated her as one of the “Top 10 Artists To Watch” in 2017. This same year, she released “Love the way you see me” album with the chart-topping track “Selfish”.

And true to form, Stephanie Quayle was inducted in 2019, into CMT’s Next Women of Country.


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