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Country music is so much more than pick-up trucks and Bud Light. True country music is about love, life, and overcoming hardship against all odds. You don't have to be a right-wing cowboy to enjoy these tunes. Here are 5 new artists that are so talented even country music haters will appreciate their sound.
Shane Smith & the Saints
Every song they have released is worth a listen. Their lyrics paint a vivid image with each note, which is accompanied by Shane’s raw and powerful vocals. Their hard-hitting sound will be sure to tug at your heartstrings. These guys are more than just songwriters; they are storytellers. Best yet? They are even better live.
Recommended Tracks: "The Mountain," "Oil Town," "Feather in the Wind"
Flatland's music perfectly encapsulates how it feels to be young and in love, in all of its grit and glory. Each track they have will make you laugh, cry, or sing along with each nostalgic melody. Cleto Cordero, their lead singer, has a soulful, unique twang that simultaneously manages to have amazing range and versatility, especially when accompanied by powerful guitar and fiddle. Though I have yet to hear this live, what really sets this band apart is their intricate and beautiful harmonies.
Recommended Tracks: "Coyote (The Ballad of Roy Johnson)," "Goodbye Kiss," "No Shade of Green"
Also, check out their newest single, "Honeywine," released August 27th, 2018.
Country music would not be what it is today if it weren’t for the women of country music. Kaitlin Butts embraces all that it means to be a strong-willed dreamer both as a person and in her music. She is a talented and soulful vocalist, and her lyrics are both fun and powerful. This woman is definitely going places. Her music will make you feel empowered, but also nostalgic.
Recommended Tracks: "Wild Rose," "Gal Like Me," "Tornados and Whiskey"
Also, listen to her with Flatland Cavalry in their duet "A Life Where We Work Out."
There is one word I’d use to describe Rich O’Toole: rock and roll! His vocals are both powerful and edgy. His songs are for jamming out with your buddies, saying “screw you!” to your ex, and thinking about the good old days.. or all three at once! His lyrics are very tongue-in-cheek, while still remaining raw and honest. This artists energy is contagious, especially if you see him live.
Recommended Tracks: "American Kid," "Too Good To Call," "The Cricket Song"
Also, check out his newest single "Texas Queen" released September 21st, 2018.
This is another artist that tells a vivid story with each lyric and note. His sound is heartfelt and honest and manages to be both gritty and beautiful all at the same time. The unique creak of his soulful vocals reminds me more of some indy rock artists than the country at times, but the instrumentals, which is sometimes just an acoustic guitar, brings you right back home.
Recommended Tracks: "Lady May," "If Whiskey Could Talk," "Whitehouse Road"