New country artists are continuously popping in, hitting the ground with dangerously addicting songs that will leave you craving for more (thank you, TikTok), and creating names and roads to success for themselves in this cutthroat genre where only the best (and the viral) survive and thrive. And with so many of them, it’s hard to keep track. We know, and we’re here to help you out.
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Here’s Country Thang Daily’s 2022 round-up filled with everything you should basically know about the top 15 new country artists that you need to listen to before this year ends. Hopefully, you’ll find a new artist to tune to and vibe with in this list. Time to scroll down!
1. Morgan Wade
Morgan Wade did not wade through country music. She didn’t have to because the moment she entered shore, she created waves that paved a clear way to glory and fame. Mind you, she wasn’t even trying.
Wade first made waves in 2021 with her breakout debut project, Reckless, delivering her truth through raw and authentic lyrics. And in a chaotic world moving too fast, she undeniably spoke her vulnerability to anyone who listened to her – throwing a rope to others like her who are struggling with the weight of everything.
Her lead single off of the project “Wilder Days” topped critical global lists including Rolling Stone, TIME, New York Times, and country music authorities Tennessean, Whiskey Riff, Billboard, The Boot, and Taste of Country. And the rest of the ten-piece collection was brought to life by GRAMMY award-winners Paul Ebersold and Sadler Vaden. Following her emotionally-driven project, Wade also dropped two holiday anthems, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” and “Santa Claus is Back in Town.”
This 2022, she opened for Luke Combs on this sold-out three-date stadium tour and released another hit titled “Run” from the deluxe version of Reckless. And with the success of her music career, she has also opened her own tour, which will run until January 2023.
If you are into the underdog grit with a straight up puncher songwriting style and a fresh blend of country and alternative rock sound, then you should definitely check her out.
2. Conner Smith
Conner lives true to his name Smith- an ultimate sorcerer. But instead of swords and magic potions, he forges stories and melodies that will truly captivate any listener. And now, he is considered as one of this generation’s rising country superstars.
Smith started writing songs when he was just 6, earned a writing deal with BMI at only 9 – second youngest to the legendary Michael Jackson, and snagged his own publishing deal at the tender age of 16.
Five years later, he released his debut country-pop single, “Lean From It.” This gave him enough momentum to steer his career upwards, but what fueled his overdrive boost was his viral breakout sideline anthem, “I Hate Alabama.” Smith first teased the song on social media, but after gaining an overwhelming response, he decided to officially launch it. The next day after its release, Smith was propelled even higher as Alabama’s football team Crimson Tide lost to Texas A&M. Since then, he has continued to turn heads with other releases like “Why I Can’t Leave,” and he has no intention of stopping.
Smith kicked off his 2022 as the opener for Ryan Hurd’s Tour de Pelago tour and as one of the billed artists in the Sam Hunt-led Casa Fiesta in Cancun, Mexico. And just this August, he released his newest single, “Orange and White.” He is also currently on tour, which will culminate in October.
This Tennessee-native’s smooth country twang and party-like stage presence will definitely draw your attention anytime, anywhere.
3. Alana Springsteen
Alana Springsteen blossomed late in 2021, but that didn’t stop her from dominating the country music scene this year.
Her name first buzzed in 2020, after she shone through in the piano-led vocal showcase “Think About You” with Curbs Records artist Filmore. But it wasn’t until September 2021 that she officially dropped her studio debut EP, History of Breaking Up (Part 1). The seven-piece project featured honest, raw, and mature songwriting mixed with playful lyrics that highlighted her craft she had been honing since she was 14. The EP also included powerhouse co-writes just like “Zero Trucks” with viral country superstar Walker Hayes. Aside from her EP, she also teamed up with another country newcomer Roman Alexander for “Trying Not To” and went on the road with pop band LANY on their gg bb xx Tour.
And just this year, she released the second part of her EP – an eight-track collection including her breakup anthem “Me Myself and Why” and slow-tempo heartbreak ballad “New Number.” And if you think the bar was high with the first part, this second chapter will truly raise that bar even higher. That’s why it’s no surprise that Alana Springsteen currently boasts an independent 55 million career streams record.
If you’re looking for a modern twist on country with refreshingly vibrant vocals and authentic songwriting, look no further. Alana Springsteen’s discography will definitely suit your needs.
4. Ashley Cooke
Ashley Cooke is never not cooking anything for her fans, and not once has she ever disappointed with her releases.
The blonde powerhouse, first known by many on TikTok as a producer of buzz-worthy anthems and co-founder of The 615 House dedicated for aspiring country singers, actually started her career after winning Belmont University’s historic Country Showcase in 2019. But due to the pandemic, every plan came into an abrupt halt. That was when she decided to take her chance on TikTok, uploading her song “Jealous of the Sky.”
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The track unexpectedly blew up, opened doors for her, and slowly built her a loyal fanbase. In 2021, she released her well-rounded debut record, Already Drank That Beer – Side A, produced by Jimmy Robbins. The collection included “Never Til Now” (which she also performed as a duet with Brett Young) and “Good Goodbye” featuring Jimmie Allen. She also collaborated with Roman Alexander for the romantic duet “Between You & Me” and hit the road on tour with her fellow rising country acts, BRELAND and Spencer Crandall.
Early this 2022, Cooke toured alongside Cole Swindell, Brett Young, and Jordan Davis and performed at some of the summer’s hottest fairs and festivals. She also just recently released “getting into,” which she co-wrote with Emily Weisband and Will Weatherly before she headed out to open for multi-platinum artist Cole Swindell’s Down To The Bar Tour.
Ashley Cooke is worth checking out, especially if you’re a fan of captivating vocals who love to tell a wide range of stories – from heartbreak ballads to drinking anthems.
5. Larry Fleet
Be warned; Larry Fleet is no fleeting artist in the genre because he is set to carve his name as one of the best country recording artists of his generation. And that wouldn’t be surprising for this talented tunesmith who once shared a stage with the legendary Willie Nelson.
Fleet, unlike the first ones on the list, made his debut with a powerful hymn. The country radio single titled “Where I Find God” was released in 2020 and created a life-changing phenomenon to every ear that heard it. It became a critically-acclaimed hit climbing charts and raking in millions of views.
After the success of his debut, Fleet followed with a 14-track Joey Moi-produced full-length album. All songs were co-written by him alongside top-shelf tunesmiths like Rhett Akins, Brett James, the Warren Brothers, and Connie Harrington. He also collaborated with Jon Pardi, Jamey Johnson, and Bryan Sutton for the collection. And another major highlight of his 2021 was performing on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry with the support of his kids and biggest fans, Waylon and Stella.
We are yet to hear if there’s new music underway this 2022, but we can catch him on the road as the opening act for Morgan Wallen’s The Dangerous Tour alongside HARDY.
If you love one-liners, good hooks, and powerhouse vocals blended into a balance of traditional and contemporary music, make sure to give Larry Fleet a listen.
6. Brittney Spencer
Brittney Spencer is no penny in country music, and she is slowly making her way to conquering the honky-tonk town.
Spencer first arrived in Nashville in 2013, but unlike most country musicians starting out, it didn’t take long for her to find her footing. That is, her strong, fiery, and powerful vocals immediately earned her a spot as a background singer on tour with the likes of Carrie Underwood and Christopher Cross. But it wasn’t until seven years later that she dropped her very own four-track EP, Compassion. And it wasn’t until her 2021 single “Sober & Skinny” that her name finally made a loud impact.
That booming success led her to multiple doors of opportunities and quite an eventful year. She graced Billboards throughout Time Square in Manhattan, performed at the Country Music Hall of Fame, joined Mickey Guyton and Madeline on the stage of the CMA Awards singing Guyton’s “Love My Hair,” and performed as a member of The Highwomen for BottleRock. And not to mention a 15-city headlining tour to cap off the year. All of those are for one single.
And this year, Spencer is off to open for the country music icon Reba McEntire for her Reba: Live in Concert Tour, as well as Willie Nelson, Maren Morris, and Brandi Carlile. New music might be brewing, so we just have to stay tuned.
Brittney Spencer is undeniably full of potential not only as a singer but also as a leader in making space for Black women in country music. You won’t definitely be disappointed if you decide to let her song play.
7. Chayce Beckham
Chayce Beckham chased his dream of being a country music artist at full speed. All-in, no regrets. And after winning the 19th season of the fan-favorite American Idol, there is no stopping him from hitting the ground and making his name a staple in the genre.
Beckham had a tumultuous life before his big title win. He had hit rock bottom battling addiction, substance abuse, and a whole lot of other demons of his own. But thanks to the encouragement and support from his family, he took a chance on himself. The golden ticket to Hollywood introduced him to millions of viewers who became his fans after his impressive covers of the hits by Chris Stapleton, Zac Brown Band, Luke Combs, Tyler Childs, Incubus, and the Beatles and performance of a couple of originals too.
Shortly after his win, he dropped his autobiographical debut single, “23,” which described his struggles with unashamed honesty. Almost immediately after it was released, the track shot to the top of the country and all-genre iTunes charts.
And this 2022, Beckham collaborated with labelmate Linsday Ell to produce the song “Can’t Do Without Me.” After that, he is off to be on tour and to perform as an opening act for Luke Combs’ Canadian Tour with fellow artist Riley Green.
His gritty vocals perfectly mixed with his rock-infused country sound will surely get anyone vibing. So, what are you waiting for? Hit the play button!
When BRELAND landed, he made sure his music was going to be heard. And with a collection of collaborations with top country stars and a multi-genre-influenced music style, he became an indisputable artist everyone paid attention to.
The Jersey native grew up surrounded by gospel music and a range of other influences, just like Stevie Wonder, Rascal Flatts, Justin Timberlake, Nelly, and Drake. And that definitely showed with his country-trap song “My Truck,” which he later on re-released with a feature by Sam Hunt. And in the next year and a half, he has enjoyed the spotlight with collaborations with Keith Urban for “Throw It Back,” Jimmie Allen for “Somebody,” Mickey Guyton for “Cross Country,” Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts for “All I See,” Nelly for “High Horse,” and Dierks Bentley for “Beers On Me.” He also headlined his Cross Country Tour and opened for Bentley’s Beers On Me Tour.
Earlier this 2022, BRELAND got on the road to kick off Russell Dickerson’s All Yours, All Night Tour. His debut album Cross Country will also be out in a few days!
BRELAND’s music is for those who love the distinguished sound that blurs genre lines. He will definitely be enjoyed by any music fan.
ERNEST has been earnestly working as a songwriter for the longest time. His songwriting catalog is an impressive resume filled with smash number one hits for top names in the genre, just like Morgan Wallen’s “More Than My Hometown,” Florida Georgia Line’s “I Love My Country,” and Sam Hunt’s “Breaking Up Was Easy In The 90’s”. But now, he is more than ready to take on the genre with his own voice.
The songwriter became a breakout artist after he released his toast-provoking anthem “Cheers” in 2020. And then he continued to ride the momentum with his fiddle-filled, nostalgic track “American Rust” in 2021, which earned him with new fans. Then he closed the year strong with a follow-up, a career-changing duet with Morgan Wallen titled “Flower Shops.”
2022 started out busy for ERNEST as he teamed up with David Lee Murphy and Ben Burgess for “Red Dirt Clouds,” the ninth single off of HARDY’s project HIXTAPE: Vol. 2. He also announced his headlining tour, A Sucker For Small Towns with Jake Worthington, Lauren Watkins, and Noah Hicks as opening acts.
You can always expect vibrant melodies, soulful sound, and unmatched songwriting with ERNEST. And that means every song is a high-quality release.
10. Restless Road
Restless Road, Nashville’s hottest trio, is exactly what their name suggests: restless (to make music). The group first earned recognition on social media with their charming harmonies, impressive covers and mash-ups, and of course, catchy original tunes. And now, they’re turning their digital numbers into a devoted fan base.
Garrett Nichols, Colton Pack, and Zach Beeken started their journey back in 2013 when they joined X-Factor Season 3. The all-male country band finished 4th place but after that, there have been no major buzz around them. Seven years later, they reunited with fellow artist and friend Kane Brown who took them under his wing. That moment catalyzed the success of their career. They signed a record deal, dropped their debut single “Take Me Home” featuring Kane Brown, and released their self-titled EP with a smash hit, “Take One Looks at Her Momma.” And they didn’t stop at that. They dropped even more songs, including their party anthems “Bar Friends,” “Hometown Tonight,” and “Headlights.” And also went on the road with Brown in his Blessed & Free Tour.
When 2022 entered, they launched their single “Growing Old With You,” which they re-released as a First Dance Version. The trio also announced their headlining tour, Bar Friends.
If you’re into a wide range of tunes and enjoy mash-ups and covers, Restless Road is a good place to start your search.
11. Kat & Alex
Kat & Alex, the sweet romantic duo with a spicy Latin taste, is out to catch fans with their fresh and inventive honky-tonk sound, soulful, almost pitch-perfect harmonies, and bilingual lyrics. And they’re definitely standing out and proud in the genre as a game-changer and representative of the Latin community.
Just like Chayce Beckham, the duo started their career on American Idol. But unlike him, the two didn’t end up winning the season. Alex “Space Cowboy” Garrido was eliminated after their duet performance of Lauren Daigle’s “You Say,” leaving Kat Lopez to compete at the next round as a solo artist. After her exit on the show, the two reunited as a duo. They signed a management deal and a publishing contract and dropped their debut single “How Many Times” the same year. But what really got fans stirred to the core was their Spanish rendition of the song.
In 2021, the duo – now married – showcased more of their spell-binding harmonies with tracks like “You and the Radio,” “Most Nights,” and “Heartbreak Tour.” Aside from continuously releasing music, Kat & Alex also made their long-awaited Grand Ole Opry debut.
For 2022, they released their new single, “We Bought A House,” which also has a Spanish version titled “Mi Casa.” They will also be on the road to perform though they’re not yet fully booked, so you need to stay tuned to that.
Kat & Alex definitely delivers a refreshing sound in country music, and with their wide vocal range and complimenting Southern twang, they are sure to offer more variety.
12. Chase Matthew
Here’s another Chase chasing a country music dream. Meet Chase Matthew, the unprecedented breakthrough artist, making waves on various streaming platforms. The up-and-comer artist is ready to take the plunge from streams to live and create a bigger name for himself.
Matthew found himself wrapped in success after the release of his six-track debut EP “County Line.” The same-titled title track racked up nearly 1.4 million streams on Spotify and 2.59 million streams on Apple music and initially stacked 631,000 views on YouTube. And with chart-topper Ryan UpChurch signing him with his label Holler Boy Records, Matthew is charging with bigger energy but still with the same authentic charisma that brought him to the top. And he released a new single off of his popular EP “Love Like That.”
This 2022, he gave fans a new playlist to enjoy with his debut album Born For This. And he also announced his Born For This Tour dates, which you can still catch this Fall.
If you enjoy deep southern vocals and authentic songwriting reveling on shared experiences, you’ll definitely have a lot of fun listening to Chase Matthew.
13. Carter Faith
Have faith with us when we say that Carter is one of the must-watch new country artists this year. Her name might not be as boomingly loud like the other ones on the list, but she will surely be one in the next years to come for country music.
Carter Faith, like Ashley Cooke, is a graduate of the prestigious Belmont University, and now, both have been enjoying a successful career in country music. In 2020, Faith released her debut EP, Let Love Be Love which includes her electrifying track “Buzzkilla” and roll-down-your-windows-down kind of love song “Joyride.” After her release, she received numerous high praises and was even named the first country artist to be part of Spotify’s Fresh Finds Program. She also had the opportunity to perform at different venues, including closing out a sold-out show at the Ryman Auditorium and sharing stages with country artists like Cole Swindell, Carly Pearce, and Old Dominion.
Earlier this year, she released a new single titled “Greener Pasture,” a perfectly dreamy and laid-back song that talks about heartbreak and the romanticization of the hurt and pain that come with it. She is also set to be out on the road for the rest of the year.
Faith’s charisma lies in her emotive lyricism filled with pointed truths akin to the style of Taylor Swift, which is perfectly blended with the chill aesthetic of Kacey Musgraves in a unique country-pop sound. So if you like Taylor Swift and Kacey Musgraves, then you will definitely find Carter Faith’s songs a good listen.
14. Dalton Dover
Dalton Dover is ready to dive into the country music world and fulfill the dream that he has been holding on to since he was a young boy.
Dover has always been passionate about music, and growing up, he has always dreamed of being a country music artist. Five years later, he had the opportunity to realize that dream through The Voice Season 16. The 21-year-old Georgia native was given the chance to be mentored by country singer Blake Shelton. Though he did not win, he was able to pursue a successful career in country music.
In 2021, he released his debut singles “You Got a Small Town” and “Baby I Am,” which both garnered critical acclaim from Billboard for his infusion of his country style with bluesy intensity. These tracks helped the wheels of his career to get moving into a positive direction.
Earlier this year, he reaped the fruits of the success of his debut singles. He opened for Luke Comb’s Mercedes Benz Stadium show in Atlanta, and after that, he released his single “Hear About A Girl.” He then set out on his seven-night August residency performing at multiple locations of Blake Shelton’s Ole Red in Nashville. And just right after finishing, he announced that he will be supporting fellow newcomer Priscilla Block in her Welcome to the Block Party Tour. He is also preparing to release his next single, “Damn Good Life,” which he co-wrote with Alex maxwell and Jaxson Free.
If you love a versatile artist who can tell you honest stories about rural life and at the same time seduce you with a sultry love song, Dover is the new country artist you need to hear.
15. Priscilla Block
Last but definitely not the least on our list is Priscilla Block. This newcomer artist is not letting anything block her way into creating a name for herself in the genre and empowering young females just like her.
As we said, one way into this cutthroat industry is through virality. And Priscilla Block definitely knew that. She first got her start on TikTok, sharing her unapologetic anthem “Thick Thighs.” Her powerful message and equally powerful vocals led her to become nearly an overnight sensation on the platform. Riding the momentum of her newfound fame, she released yet another single, but this time she showcased her vulnerability (and versatility as well). The breakup ballad “Just About Over You” climbed charts and gave Block her first-ever single at Country Radio.
2021 came, and she conquered. She sold out venues across the southeast, shared stages with country hitmakers, made her Opry debut, and released another hit titled “Peaked In High School.”
But after exploding in 2021, she still has so much in store for 2022. This year, she released two new singles, “My Bar” and “Off The Deep End.” She also announced her Welcome to the Block Party Tour, where she will be supported by fellow newcomer artist Dalton Dover.
Priscilla Block is the very definition of confidence and empowerment who, at the same time, is not afraid to show vulnerability. And that personality translates well into her music.
There you go, our top 15 new country artists this 2022 that you should definitely not miss out on! Check them out on Spotify, iTunes, and other streaming platforms, or catch them on tour this fall. You won’t be disappointed.
Alana Springsteen, Ashley Cooke, Breland, Brittney Spencer, Carter Faith, Chase Matthew, Chayce Beckham, Conner Smith, Dalton Dover, ERNEST, Kat and Alex, Larry Fleet, Morgan Wade, Priscilla Block, Restless Road