Hungry for some new music? Whatever your taste in country, these tunes should hit the spot.
Whether you’re into outlaw-style country rock, old-school, acoustic-based roots, or even polished contemporary country, things are pretty swell right now for country music fans. The range of sounds that fits in the genre is as wide as the Grand Canyon.
With all the great artists on the rise, there are, of course, many more songs we could recommend, but these are a great start and will certainly point you into the direction of many more great tunes.
Chris Young – “I’m Coming Over”
We’ll be speaking with Chris Young soon about his upcoming tour (his biggest to date), his upcoming album, and his ability to offer up both polished, rock-driven, radio-friendly country music while also knowing when to stick to a more traditional approach to his favored style. With a handful of No. 1 and Top Five Billboard hits under his belt, Young is a legit superstar who has managed to not devolve into the formulaic morass that often handcuffs the top male voices in country music. The title track from his upcoming record, “I’m Coming Over,” is a mature, slick, and sexy tune, and proves that Young’s success will continue.
Pokey LaFarge – “Actin’ a Fool”
At only 32 years of age, Pokey LaFarge represents so much of what’s great about the swinging, juke-joint style of honky-tonk music that was popular decades before the term “bro-country” was an unfortunate part of the musical lexicon. The St. Louis resident recently made his Grand Ole Opry debut and offered up “Actin’ a Fool” from his latest album, Something in the Water. This harmonica-driven jam is irresistible. Give it a listen and just see if you can resist the urge to bounce while sitting in your office chair – it’s impossible.
The White Buffalo – “Modern Times”
With his songs regularly popping up on television shows such as the grizzly biker gang drama Sons of Anarchy, it’s no surprise that The White Buffalo (Jake Smith) offers up rough-hewn rock-tinged country music that often feels as dangerous as it does comfortable. Smith’s latest record, Love and the Death of Damnation is packed with vivid storytelling and the low, ominous vocals that have given The White Buffalo a cult following. That following is only growing larger as he currently tours the country to the biggest crowds of his career. In “Modern Times,” we get Smith at his most upbeat, but not at the expense of substance or the high lyrical standards he has set for himself over the past few years.
Dave Rawlings Machine – “Pilgrim (You Can’t Go Home)”
Mark our words: By the end of the year, Nashville Obsolete from the Dave Rawlings Machine will top many a “Best Country Albums of 2015” list. Rawlings, who knows his way around an acoustic guitar as well as anyone roaming the folk and Americana scenes, has been the stellar cohort to Gillian Welch, arguably the Queen of American Roots music. Now, with the release of his second album under his own “Machine” moniker, he cements himself as an artist who deserves his own spotlight. This song not only features some great picking, but the harmonies of Welch, so yes, this song in particular is fantastic, but the entire record is well worth your time.
Courtney Patton – “So This Is Life”
With the release of her latest album, So This Is Life, Texas native Courtney Patton has established herself as a forceful voice in the Texas country scene. But her blend of songwriting, folk arrangements, and that magical voice send Patton well beyond that scene’s constraints. The title track is about some of the dramatic moments of Patton’s life. It’s powerful in its simplicity and beautiful in its delicate handling of fine details.