Chely Wright Reveals She is Gay

FILE - In this May 26, 2004 file photo, Chely Wright performs at the 2004 All-Star Jam party following the 39th annual Academy of Country Music Awards at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, file) AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, file

Country singer Chely Wright is the latest celebrity to come out.

Wright told People magazine that she's gay and that nothing in her life has been more magical than the moment she decided to reveal her sexuality.

The 39-year-old says she experienced a community in which homosexuality was shunned.

"I hid everything for my music," she told the magazine, which hits newsstands Friday.

Photos: Out in the Spotlight

"Historically, we've never had an out country music artist, ever," Chely, 39, told Access Hollywood in an intervew set to air Wednesday, according to OK magazine. "Early in my life I went through what I think a lot of gay people go through, thinking that I could change and pray it away."

Wright added that she felt she was living a lie. She mentioned her long-term relationship with fellow country music artist Brad Paisley, who did not know she is gay, saying, "When I realized he was wanting forever with me...I could see the damage I was doing to him, and I cut him off completely, cold turkey."

Wright is releasing her memoir, "Like Me," and her new album, "Lifted Off the Ground," this week.

An e-mail sent to Wright's record label wasn't immediately returned Monday.
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