Hey ya’ll! Tina here! I’m the sole Brolonation member in Nashville and am very excited to bring ya’ll a bit of the dirty south (what I’ve learned thus-far ) and to share my love of country music!! I got involved with these two ding dongs through KB and UCLA marching band...so I’m obviously a cool kid ; ) I am currently living and working in the heart of Music City and loving everything about it! I moved here to pursue a career in the music industry and have spent the last year at one of the city’s top country radio stations.
Below is a list of new country artists I’ve absolutely fallen in love with over the last few months. These are not deep-cut-underground-belly-of-Nashville artists (that’s a different list), these are budding artists and songwriters that have started seeing commercial success recently. Many have their first hit to country radio, or have helped write one. (And then there’s Tyler Childers who doesn’t fit in any of these categories but we’ll get to him later.)
You’ll start to notice that these artists overlap and write with one another and/or are featured on each other’s songs. I point this out only to show how small the world of country music can be. These are the artists hopefully at the beginning of very exciting careers and kind of defining the next generation of popular country.
If you are not a country-fan...I encourage you to give this list a shot. There’s a wide variety from the genre represented and I would be willing to bet you’ll like at least one of the artists. Sure, we all know that current country music has a strong pop influence and that “no one can measure up to the Country Greats"...but don’t let that mind set keep you from exploring what is being created. The country family is loyal and loving and we drink a lot of beer. I think you’ll like it here.
Check out this Spotify and Apple Music playlist!
Mitchell Tenpenny - Telling All My Secrets
- Vibe: Relatable, life & love, drinking buddy
- Man, this is just good country music. Mitchell Tenpenny has it all. The voice, the songwriting, the personality, the stage presence and that down-home southern feel. Mitchell is relatable, current and fits the Nashville vibe of RIGHT NOW the way that only a Nashville-native could. From love songs to break up songs, from drunk dial to “I don’t deal with bitches no more” songs, Mitchell writes it all with intelligence and finesse. His songs hit the hard stuff and the soft spots the way music is supposed to. They’ll leave you wanting to sing, drink, cry or even love along with him. He has taken Nashville and the country scene by storm and can get any room screaming lyrics along with him. He’s the real deal.
Ingrid Andress - Lady Like
- Vibe: Original, female bad-ass, strong
- Ingrid Andress is that cool girl in school and definitely my lady-love of country music right now. She’s real, raw, and oh-so-very-talented. She certainly airs on the pop side of country music, but her debut album “Lady Like” is kick ass. It’s a powerful introduction to her fierce “I-don’t-give-a-fu**” style that’s absolutely dripping with talent. She only drinks tequila and exudes female badass-ary. She also refuses to wear a dress which results in a set of the most incredible two piece outfits, which she rocks the stage in. This album tells the story of what it means to be a strong female with a soft side and a love of country music.
Hardy - Hixtape Vol 1
- Vibe: Party, beer, buddies, back-country
- I don’t even know where to start with this guy. I’m OBSESSED. Hardy’s music is thick with down-home backwoods feels and you’ll feel like a truck driving, beer drinking “Good Ole Boy” by the time the album is over. You might even start liking the sound of that redneck lifestyle. Hardy writes with EVERYONE in Nashville and has enjoyed a successful writing career as well as built an incredible repertoire of his own. On his latest album, “Hixtape Vol. 1”, each artist Hardy wrote with is featured on the track they helped write, rather than just being written in the credits. I think this is very cool. I love this album but I also love the two EPs before it, so definitely check those out. Throw HARDY on at any backyard bar-b-que or beer pong tournament and the feeling will be just right.
Ashley McBryde - Never Will
- Vibe: raw, real, old-school, tough, rock
- Ashley McBryde is an incredibly talented singer-songwriter rooted in classic country, Southern rock and the blues. She’s a grown woman writing grown woman music and a very far cry from the pop-y, girly-girl vibe that country radio seems to accept in it’s women. Radio seemed hesitant to embrace this rough-around-the-edges, real woman no matter how talented she clearly is. But here we are...finally a single on the radio. Her incredible storytelling and bluesy/country/rock vibe sets her apart from anything else out there and make her feel very authentic. She’s exactly who she is and not trying to be anyone else. She tells it like it is and writes real country music.
Ernest - Locals Only
- Vibe: tropical, care-free, ernest (lol)
- If you’re listening to Ernest I hope you have a drink with an umbrella in your hand and a boat nearby. Listening to Ernest feels like being a local at a tropical island bar and strolling in with the love of your life or maybe your best buddy. On his album, cover Ernest dons a cowboy hat with a hawaiian shirt and a cigar…and that’s the vibe. Definitely a country guy with some strong Jimmy Buffett vibes. He’s achieved success writing for Florida Georgia Line, Morgan Wallen, Chris Lane and the like. Ernest himself does not have a hit to country radio yet, but is it only a matter of time before we hear one?...I hope so. This album is too good to not be listening to.
Gabby Barrett - “I Hope”
- Vibe: young, powerful, pop
- Gabby Barrett started off on American Idol and is now soaring to the top of country charts with her SAVAGE debut song “I Hope”. It sounds a lot like a love song...UNTIL IT’S NOT! Which is why I love it. She’s pretty pop-y for a country artist but I can’t deny that I love her lyrics. Her follow-up songs have been beautiful love songs, presumably about her husband who often accompanies her on guitar. Her first album is coming soon and I’m very curious what it’s going to be like. She’s got a monstrous voice and sometimes I think it gets hidden in the pop-iness of her tracks. She’s also very religious, which doesn’t hinder her in the country world, but might in the Top 40 realm. Needless to say, she’s very talented and I’m excited to see how her career will unfold in the next year. We’re all ‘hoping’ for big things ...see what I did there?
Devin Dawson - Dark Horse
- Vibe: Outlaw, dark, “Califonia smoke”
- I LOVE DEVIN DAWSON! He’s outlaw-y and dark and an astounding songwriter. I love him too much to not include him on this list even though this album is a bit older than the others. Devin had his own hit to country radio “All On Me”, but it most known for helping write the crazy successful #1 hit for Blake Shelton, “God’s Country” AND he’s featured on HARDY’s current radio single “One Beer” which he also helped pen. I’m not really sure what’s next for Devin, but I really hope there’s new music soon. I could see him not “playing the game” with country radio and staying more of a songwriter than pursuing commercial success. Honestly, as long as he keeps writing that’s all that matters.
Tyler Childers - Country Squire
- Vibe: authentic, musicality, Americana
- This isn’t really the right list for Tyler Childers to be on, but here we are. Tyler doesn’t play “the game” with country radio, which makes the success he’s found even more impressive. Give the album a listen and you’ll understand why it’s not on the radio, but you won’t be able to turn it off. It’s like a train chugging through the American countryside that you can’t seem to get off. Tyler’s music deserves more than radio has to offer. Unfortunately, radio is still a pretty crucial part of commercial success, but Tyler has built a world of dedicated fans that will follow him anywhere. He doesn’t cater to anyone or anything and you can hear that freedom in his tracks. The musicianship is beyond most of what you’ll hear on the radio and his music just feels true and right and good. If you’re looking for authentic Americana, country, bluegrass music, here it is.
Travis Denning - Beer’s Better Cold
- Vibe: next country-boy, beer songs, country life
- Travis Denning is yet another successful songwriter breaking into a solo career. His single “After a Few” is going to hit #1 soon and his supporting EP “Beer’s Better Cold” was just released and includes some really great country james. His writing is clever and relatable and he really embodies what we love about country music. He’s all good vibes, love your girl, appreciate the little things, love your life and drink an ice cold beer. He’s got the country-boy thing down to a tee and I think it’s going to work for him.
Caylee Hammack - “Family Tree”
- Vibe: Firecracker, honest, down-to-earth
- I really wantCaylee Hammack to be on this list, so I’m including her. I love her vibe and she’s so nice, but I’m waiting on a track that I’m obsessed with. Hopefully there’s’an album around the corner that will have that track on it. She’s an absolute firecracker and certainly has star power. She has this dope old-school female country voice and man does she use it well. She really can rock hard and when I saw her perform I was impressed with her ability to hold her own on rock and country standards, which say a lot. Here’s to whatever’s next for this girl and hopefully many more fringe jumpsuits (see photo)!
Almost on the list
You’ve heard them before:
- Morgan Wallen*:He very quickly became too popular for the list above and he sooooo loveably redneck it’s amazing. Many of his early hits were written by Hardy (just to give any idea of the small world country can be)
- Jimmie Allen*:Personal fav. You’ve never met a nicer man which makes his music and success all the sweeter.
- Tenille Townes - I’ve heard her referred to as “The Carrie Underwood of Canada” and she’s starting to break in the US as well
- Cody Johnson: Ex-Rodeo-Star-turned-country-singer, Cody is a real deal cowboy. This guy IS Texas country.
- Riley Green*-Couple great songs have seen lots of air time on radio. Super excited for him to keep making music!
- Adam Doleac*:Famous for the song “Famous” and another one of the nicest guys around :D Kind of waiting to see what he does next.
- Jon Langston: He’s kind of a slow burn on the country scene. He’s had a couple songs on the radio over the past years and looks like he’s back with more. Maybe this time with a #1?
- Lauren Alaina:Also started out on American Idol and has success writing with many artists and being featured on other’s songs. Kind of gives me a Meghan Trainor of country vibe….and she has indeed written with Meghan. She’s also featured with Devin Dawson on HARDY’s single “One Beer”.
Honorable mentions you may not have heard of yet:
Jameson Rodgers, Fillmore, Parker McCullom, Breland, Ryan Hurd, Payton Smith, King Calaway, Mackenzie Porter, Seafort, Tenille Arts, Ashland Craft, Avenue Beats* (*=ones I really like)
Country music is made to get you through the good and the bad times. They’re drinking songs, heartbreak songs, love songs, and songs that remind you how to live the good life. So grab a beer and a buddy ya’ll and turn up the tunes! I really hope you enjoy! Lotta love!
--Brolonation’s Boss Bitch ←I’m into this and keeping it forever
P.S. Buy a Brolo so we can keep creating awesome content like this!