LeAnn Rimes, Lucy Hale support Billy Gilman's coming out gay
Nov. 23, 2014
- , Appearing on Entertainment Tonight, country music artist Billy Gilman said that he was overwhelmed by the support he's received after coming out gay.
The 26-year-old Gilman made his announcement in a YouTube video to fans on the same day as Ty Herndon's coming out, making him the third openly gay country music artist after Herndon and Chely Wright.
Gilman, who at 12 became the youngest artist ever to have a Top 40 country hit with the 2000 release of One Voice, said that he feared his sexuality was holding back his career.
"Being a gay male country artist is not the best thing [for your career]," Gilman said in the video."I did a showcase in Nashville and no major label showed."
Gilman told ET's Nancy O'Dell that he's in an industry "that's ashamed of me for being me" but added that he's also received positive response.
"Ty [Herndon] called and wished me well and told me it was a courageous effort," Gilman said. "LeAnn Rimes said she was crying in a McDonalds bathroom. Lucy Hale, you know, one of my peers, who's a phenomenal singer in country music and a great actress, she has been texting me back and forth. The reception has been pretty overwhelming so far."
"I just want to make the best music for my fans," he added.