From female country stars-in-waiting Mickey Guyton and Lauren Jenkins to duo Native Run, find out the country artists to watch for in 2015.
Simply put, she's at the head of the class. A series of showcases at Nashville club 3rd and Lindsley helped to spread the word about this talented newcomer who Universal has been developing for a couple of years now. Finally, the wrapping is off of the package, and her debut single, "Better Than You Left Me," is about to impact radio. Guyton is quite possibly the best female voice to come along since Carrie Underwood. She's an impact artist, no doubt!
The five-man band were recently announced as one of the opening acts on Kenny Chesney's upcoming tour and their producer is red-hot Shane McAnally, who has garnered both awards and attention for his work with Kacey Musgraves. The group's current single, "Shut Me Up," shimmers with a rock 'n' roll swagger and has been impressing crowds with their live show everywhere they play. Their records will undoubtedly do the same!
A former high-school football standout in East Tennessee, Jackie Lee has every key ingredient that you can imagine in a star-to-be: a great voice, charisma to spare, and great material to choose from, such as his current Broken Bow release "She Does."
White released a pair of singles for Universal in the past, and his music definitely touched a chord with fans and critics alike, with songs like "The Simple Life." Now, with a new deal with Dot Records and Big Machine CEO Scott Borchetta behind him, look for a big year for the Alabama native.
One of Nashville's most prolific songwriters, nobody sounds anything like Stapleton as a vocalist. While fitting his rough-hewn vocal approach into the format might be a little bit of a stretch, it's a risk well worth taking by musical programmers. Stapleton is definitely one to look out for -- whether he's singing his songs or by one of his contemporaries, such as George Strait, Kenny Chesney, or Darius Rucker.
The talented Texan caused Nashville to stand up and take notice with her debut disc Bridges, which included duets with Country Music Hall of Famers such as Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, Vince Gill, Ronnie Milsap and the late Ray Price. But, there is a lot more to this newcomer, who showcased her contemporary side on her track "Lost With You."
Jenkins' first recorded project for Big Machine was a cover of "Looks That Kill" for the Motley Crue tribute disc Nashville Outlaws -- and the newcomer proved her moxie and then some. Clearly, there's more in the well. Songs like "Cadillac" and "Feel The Rain" showed her heart and passion. Much has been written about the tough road for female vocalists lately, but Jenkins might very well be one to raise the banner for a comeback!
One of the strongest male vocalists to come along in some time, there's not a lot of vocal acrobatics or technical gimmicks involved with Pitney. Instead, the singer possesses one of the most traditional-sounding vocal styles we have heard in years. Whether covering Keith Whitley on "Miami, My Amy," or turning romantic on "I Didn't Go To Sleep Last Night," Pitney is country all the way. (The latter is one of the most impressive tracks on his debut disc, a co-write with the legendary Bill Anderson.)
Dunn is a real-life cowgirl, hailing from Colorado -- not too far from the Oklahoma state line. She grew up enamored with country music, and followed her career path to Nashville's Belmont University. She began playing everywhere she could in Music City, as well as writing with many of the top tunesmiths in town, such as Hillary Lindsey, Will Hoge, and Liz Rose. Dunn was inked to a recording deal with Universal in November -- the same month she opened for rock legend Bob Seger. Put a guitar in her hand, and with her self-assured vocal approach, Clare Dunn is nothing short of a bona-fide hillbilly badass!
They have already opened for acts such as David Nail and Lady Antebellum. 2015 will see them as an opening act on Sam Hunt's Lipstick Graffiti tour as the duo will try to continue plowing away after the success of their lead single "Good On You." Comprised of Rachel Beauregard and Bryan Dawley, the duo has tight harmonies that are balanced by a melodic and instrumental approach. With powerhouse songwriter Luke Laird sitting in the producer's chair, the new year just might be theirs for the taking!