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Ryan Griffin’s ‘Salt, Lime & Tequila’ Is a Relaxation Anthem: Emerging Artists Spotlight

This week’s pick is Ryan Griffin, who debuted at No. 21 on the chart dated April 24 thanks to his breakthrough single “Salt, Lime & Tequila.”

Welcome to Emerging Artists Spotlight, the Billboard series where we highlight a musician who has recently made his or her debut on the Emerging Artists chart. Whether they are new to the industry, or have been around for a while but are just starting to have a chart impact, the intention is to showcase where they are here and now. This week’s pick is Ryan Griffin, who debuted at No. 21 on the chart dated April 24 thanks to his breakthrough single “Salt, Lime & Tequila.”

Amid a global pandemic and the turbulence of the year 2020, sometimes you just need to sit back and enjoy the simple things.

Country singer-songwriter Ryan Griffin leans into this sentiment on his breakthrough single “Salt, Lime & Tequila,” which he tells Billboard was inspired by wanting to make a song that people could relax to.

“Every time I got stressed out or the kids would be screaming I would turn on the Surfaces record [“Sunday Best”] and the world would slow down,” Griffin says. “Those songs help me take a breath and, for a moment, escape the chaos. I wanted to share that feeling with others!”

Griffin debuts at No. 21 on Billboard’s Emerging Artists chart thanks to the recent success of “Salt, Like & Tequila.” The song began to take off after going viral on TikTok last month. It climbs to No. 3 on the Digital Song Sales chart and debuts at No. 16 on the all-genre Digital Song Sales chart with 6,000 downloads sold in the latest tracking week, according to MRC Data.


Griffin’s journey onto Billboard’s charts hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing. After losing two record deals and a publishing contract, he questioned his future in the industry, but the thrill of writing new music and performing live always drew him back.

“I can’t wait to get out on the road again and meet new people and share new memories,” he says. “It may not be easy, but when you find something in life that you can’t live without, never stop chasing it. The journey may not look like you thought it would, but when you finally succeed it is so much sweeter.”

Learn more about Griffin below.

Hometown: Florida Keys

Recommended Ryan Griffin track: “Salt, Lime & Tequila”

Outside of the music: “Family and fishing fill up my time. My wife is the reason I am still making music. She has been my steady during this crazy ride. At times, she believed in me more than I believed in myself. My two boys are everything to me. We welcomed Jude Michael into the world during the pandemic last year. We were so nervous, but it ended up being the most peaceful experience. Levi Hart, my oldest, is the best big bro!”

Past Emerging Artists Spotlights: Morgan Wade | DPR Ian | Cloud Nothings | Clinton Kane | Babyface Ray | Sara Kay | Langhorne Slim | Bicep | Asiahn | Morray | Benee | Breland | (Sandy) Alex G | Charly Bliss | Tank and the Bangas | J.S. Ondara | Mabel | Kiana Lede | Joshua Bassett