Here are some facts you probably know about rising country artist Warren Zeiders – he’s from Hershey, Pennsylvania, and he first made his name on TikTok in 2021 with his viral acoustic hit “Ride the Lightning.” During that time, he wasn’t looking for fame – no pretense or motive, just genuine sharing of his artistry. Two years later, he dropped his debut full-length album, Pretty Little Poison.
So, who is Warren Zeiders, and what else do we know about him?
Zeiders the Sportsman
Zeiders didn’t have the same childhood as most country artists like him. Instead of a mic, he held a lacrosse. He occasionally tinkered with a guitar he picked up in sixth grade, but that was it. He was a sportsman through and through, traveling for tournaments and competing in leagues.
He played lacrosse for 12 years until he was in college at Frostburg State University. Unfortunately, after a series of concussions, he ultimately decided to hang it up.
He said, “I just think that I knew that for my health purposes, longevity-wise, there was no thought process of going pro.” But it wasn’t just the physical trauma that he had to deal with. It was also the emotional aspect of it. He shared with Billboard that it got severe in his first year of college to the point that he wouldn’t leave his room, missed classes, and even missed exams.
After that, the pandemic hit, and he had to find a new outlet. That was when he started doing TikToks.
Sportsman turned viral TikTok Artist – One Take, No Edits
Warren Zeiders grew a small following on TikTok, and they kept asking for music from him. So, he decided to go to Guitar Center to buy mics and an interface. When he got home, he plugged his equipment into his laptop and pressed record. He would do acoustic cover songs like Chris Stapleton’s “Tennessee Whiskey” with a “one-take, no edits” style, and everyone loved it.
His viewership started soaring, and soon enough, his followers-turned-fans were asking for original songs.
Son of a CFO and Investor
Growing up in a business-oriented household – his mother was a CFO while his dad was in insurance and investments – his thought process went to marketing himself. He was starting to build traction, so it just seemed like a logical approach. He answered the demand and started putting his music out, and in December 2020, he released his self-written song titled “On the Run.”
Underscore Works’ Charly Salvatore saw his videos and signed him as a client. He then came to Nashville for co-writing sessions, and that’s where“Ride the Lightning” (with Rob Crosby and Eric Paslay) was born. He released it on TikTok, and it became a massive, viral hit, winning close to 1.5 million people on TikTok and around 370,000 on Instagram.
A Man With A Guitar – a Different Kind of Country
According to the singer, he believes it was his authenticity that resonated with the people. He wanted to deliver a song to his fans with just him – no pretenses – and so he decided to do a simple vocal on a guitar. ‘this is who I am, and this is what I do and how I sound,’ because there’s nothing else to hide behind.”
And it wasn’t just that decision that made the song a hit. As Jason Brow of Hollywood Life noted, it showcased Zeiders’ different kind of country. His was a sound that blended Merle Haggard and AC/DC – outlaw country meets heavy metal.
“Ride the Lightning” opened up doors of opportunities for Zeiders. These included deals with Republic Records, Capitol Records, and even Warner Records. His manager, Salvatore, suggested he visit Warner’s office. He did, and it turned out to be one of the best decisions he’s ever made.
Warner Records executives clicked with his vision and had a true passion for what he was doing. That connection with the people who run the label for his music was important to him, and he ended up signing with them.
In 2023, he released Pretty Little Poison and kicked off 2024 with a bang, releasing his newest track, “Heartbreaker.”
We hope you’ve learned more about Warren Zeiders with these facts. And if you haven’t listened to his songs yet, you should. It’ll only take one to convert you into a fan. Trust us.