Young, a native of nearby Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and a fixture on the scene since his teens, could easily have approached his latest album on auto-‐‐pilot. After all, few have had the kind of run he has. This is his fifth major-‐‐label album by the age of 30 – a feat rarely accomplished in modern country music.
Chris Janson has never doubted who he is. He's a devoted husband, a passionate father, a hit songwriter, a wildly entertaining performer and, now, a Number One country artist. All those elements influence Buy Me a Boat, his debut solo album for Warner Bros. Records/Warner Music Nashville.
Brothers Osborne, who co-produced the album with Jay Joyce (the award-winning producer behind Little Big Town’s Painkiller, Eric Church’s The Outsiders, and Carrie Underwood’s Storyteller), recorded most of Pawn Shop during breaks in their busy touring schedule, using members of their own touring band rather than session musicians from the Nashville community. The result is an album that’s stamped with the unmistakable mark of a band. It doesn’t sound like two singers, flanked by anonymous players. Instead, it sounds like a group of road warriors who’ve spent years sharing bus seats and hotel rooms, creating the sort of chemistry that can’t be faked. Pawn Shop is both raw and real, and Brothers Osborne — who, years after those household jam sessions in Deale, now have a handful of nationwide tours under their belts, songs on the charts, and a career on the rise — are no longer a family secret.
Granger Smith/Earl Dibbles Jr
Smith earned the respect of a pro like Rogers the same way he
is winning over fans, peers, and the press—with ten years' worth of music that is self-written, self-recorded, self-produced, and
independently released. Those recordings have been backed up by relentless, grassroots touring, with Smith working tirelessly, night after night, to bring his songs to a constantly expanding, passionate and dedicated fan base. Not that he claims any of this was his original intention.
Along with Sturgill Simpson, Ashley Monroe, Chris Stapleton, and Kacey Musgraves (who provides guest vocals on “Daughter”), Clark is part of a new vanguard in country music — one that tips a hat to tradition, while not eschewing its evolution. “I see what's happening right now and I feel this groundswell of people who love... I would say 'country' music, but I'll take it a step further and say 'real' music. I feel like there are people who are starved for that,” she says. “The only music I've ever made is country music. The only music I've ever really listened to consistently is country music. And I want to keep that alive, so there's a responsibility in that, for me.”
ACM’s reigning New Artist of The Year Cole Swindell just revealed his brand new single “You Should Be Here,” the debut track from his forthcoming album due out this year. Written by Swindell and Ashley Gorley, the song was most added at country radio the first day it dropped and shot to No. 1 on iTunes Country chart, Top 10 overall. The single impacted radio on January 11th, and the official video for "You Should Be Here" world premiered with Yahoo!, while Swindell performed the track for a Shazam Session as the first country artist to be featured on the popular series.
With a gritty vocal approach, considerable guitar skills, and a natural sense of country-pop dynamics, Frankie Ballard would appear to have an unshakable template for country music stardom. Born in Battle Creek, Michigan, Ballard was singing Elvis Presley songs with his dad (and with fervor) by the time he was five, but he soon fell under the summer spell of baseball and pushed himself to excel as a ball player. He was 18 before he got his first guitar, but thereafter he spent hours playing it, and music became his other passion.
Forging country with rock instrumentation and dynamics, and tossing in definite pop overtones and even some hip-hop nuances, Old Dominion is blessed with strong in-house songwriting and playing, sharpened by steady gigging on the Nashville circuit, where the band formed. Comprising four Virginians, Matt Ramsey (lead singer, guitar), Geoff Sprung (bass, vocals), Whit Sellers (drums), Brad Tursi (guitar, vocals), and Detroit, Michigan's Trevor Rosen (guitar, keyboards, vocals), the band formed in Nashville.
A country-pop singer and songwriter out of Knoxville, Tennessee, Kelsea Ballerini started writing songs when she was 13 years old, began learning guitar a year later, and moved to Nashville at 15 to pursue her dream of being a professional singer and songwriter. Four years later in 2013, when she was 19, Ballerini signed a publishing deal with Black River Publishing and a recording deal with Black River Entertainment later that same year. A debut single, "Love Me Like You Mean It," appeared from the label in 2014; the single slowly became a big hit, reaching number five on the Billboard country singles charts and number one on its country airplay charts.
Gunnar and the Grizzly Boys
With a wide range of musical influences from classic country to Detroit rock to 90s punk, Gunnar & The Grizzly Boys are one-of-a-kind in a genre of music that seems to be becoming one-in-the-same.