Artists To Watch 2018

This year has been a breakthrough for many artists including Kelsea Ballerini, Carly Pearce, and Danielle Bradberry with their chart crushing albums. Now, it’s only a matter of time before some of my favorite artists I’ve seen live at writers rounds for the longest time get their chance to shine. These are some of my picks for artists to watch for 2018:

  1. Devin Dawson 

Devin is changing the contemporary country music game. From the beginning when I heard his song “Dark Horse” played live at his shows, I knew he was something special. His original song ‘All On Me” has over 36 million streams on spotify. Now, his other single he has released, “I Don’t Care Who Sees” has over 4 million streams. His unique sound to country music is not only refreshing, but is going to make his career take off. His debut album Dark Horse will be released Jan 19; watch out.

     2. Abby Andersen

The idea of people not knowing or hearing who Abby is hurts my heart. Abby has the voice of an angel and her single “This Feeling” is my top played on spotify this year, and should’ve been yours too. It has half a million loops on spotify and I wouldn’t be surprised If I was 25% of the loops because of the amount of times I listen to it. Hearing her new content live at rounds in Nashville gets me overly excited for her. 2018 doesn’t know what’s about to hit, Abby’s coming in hot.

     3. Cale Dodds

Warner Music signee, Cale Dodds, has been killing the country spotify charts in the last year having over 5 million loops for “People Watching” and “Lying”. “All Over,” being his first official single with Warner Music, has over half a million streams and isn’t stopping there. He hasn’t disappeared on Spotify’s playlist “New Boots,” this entire year, and it’s only a short amount of time until he gets the recognition he deserves. The future is only bright for Cale. Listening to his music and randomly bumping into him at Urban Juicer in Nashville has made me curious on what’s to come. Yes, we’re basically best friends now because I ran into him in Nashville. Try not to be jealous.

     4. Ryan Griffin

I cannot talk-up Ryan Griffin enough. This guy is crazy talented. From watching him live at CMA fest to the Listening Room Cafe, he deserves big-time. Ryan has just entered into a well deserving joint publishing and development deal with the one-and-only songwriter/producer busbee and BMG Nashville. Even though we all know that Ryan is the co-writer of Kelsea Ballerini’s hit single “Dibs;” Ryan’s heart wrenching song “Woulda Left Me Too” has over 3 million streams on Spotify. It’s time for the world to discover Ryan Griffin. 2018 is his.

   5. Tyler Rich

California grown Tyler Rich has been up-and-coming the last couple years, but 2018 is going to be his big break. The first time I ever heard of Tyler was when he opened up for Dustin Lynch in 2015 and my mom literally went on stage and took shots with him. Yes, you heard that correctly. After that show, I had his EP “Valerie” on repeat. Now, here we are in 2017 and he just recently signed with Big Machine Label Group. Ladies, if you want a bop, I suggest blasting “Teach Ya Girl” as loud as you can in your car. You’re welcome.

    6. Emma White

Baltimore born and raised, Emma never saw herself in the Nashville scene. Her R&B route somehow went the country route, and I’m not opposed to it. Emma’s self titled EP has been my go-to this past year. Her voice is so soothing you can listen to her on repeat and I’m living proof of it. Her single “OVERTHINK IT” was one of my most played on Spotify this year, do you believe me yet? Getting to know her this past year was a privilege. She’s a class act and most certainly the most humble human I’ve ever met. This year was just the beginning for Emma, and I’m excited to see the big things in store for her in 2018.

If I’m right about all of these, which I will be, you’re welcome for giving you the heads-up.

Russell Dickerson: Yours Album Release Kick-Off

Russell Dickerson proved himself on Wednesday night that he’s the up-and-coming entertainer of the year. His energy and love for his fans made the opening night in Nashville for his album release even more special. There wasn’t one second where you weren’t jumping around not having a care in the world. That’s when you know you’re at a good show; you’re making remarkable memories dancing like a complete idiot.

Russell’s debut album Yours dropped on Oct 13, and has nothing but absolute jams left and right. Even though his album is all about being confidently taken and in love, it’s refreshing because I think we’re all a little too used to break-up ballads, along with the catchiest songs you’ll ever hear.

“Some people try to put on this facade of being single and desirable, but some people want a relationship. That’s what’s changed for me, is being confident in being taken. It’s the best thing ever.” – Russell Dickerson, Billboard.

Russell being in love and not caring who knows, has made Yours a 12-track love letter to his wife. Along with Yours being his album title, his single “Yours” fulfilled his big break on the charts. “This is my splash into this industry and this business,” Russell tells Billboard about the song “Yours.” “I’m so proud of everything on the record, but that song in particular has done it for me, so I wanted to continue on with that title.” 

He sang almost every song on Yours, and lucky for you I recorded all of them. I won’t give too much away; you’re going to have to go see him live yourself.

“Low Key” is one of the stripped-down songs on Yours, but it’s high key the slow song that still makes you want to sway back-and-forth. It’s a laid-back love song that I think everyone can relate to, staying in with your partner and doing absolutely nothing but ordering takeout and watching Netflix. Even if you don’t have a partner, honestly just relate it to yourself, staying in and doing nothing like it’s your job.

“Would You Love Me” is the most romantic bop I’ve ever listened to. Can you tell he’s in love yet? Russell had the crowd letting loose to this one. His “relationship goals” with his wife are reflecting to think we’re also involved in their relationship with this song. It positively struck the crowd even though the whole front row were 18-21 years olds.

His concert was the right amount of fun you needed to take the stress off. Russell is always up-beat and made to be an entertainer; his album clearly reflects that. His uplifting and positive personality indicates what kind of artist he is and what he is going to become. Even if you’re not in love and feel as if you can’t relate to Yours, I’m an 18-year-old blasting this in my dorm with my friends since it came out, trust me, you can do it. Go ahead and take a listen; you might surprise yourself.