Country Swag Spotlights: A-Z Index (Full Catalog)

Over the years, we have interviewed some of the best rising talents in the country music industry and their journey to what led them to music today. Check out the full index below to learn more about your favorite new artists…



Abby Anderson (2018)
Abbey Cone (2021)
Adam Sanders (2021)
Alana Springsteen (2020)
Alannah McCready (2021)
Alex Hall (2020)
Alexander Ludwig (2022)
Ana Cristina Cash (2018)
Andrew Jannakos (2020)
Anna Vaus (2022)
Ashla Taylor (2018)
Ashlyn Grayce (2018)
Ashley Cooke (2022)
Austin Burke (2022)


Bastian Baker (2018)
Belles (2021)
Brandon Davis (2022)
Brandon Ratcliff (2019)
Brandon Stansell (2018)
Breland (2022)
Brenna Bone (2021)
Brennley Brown (2019)
Brett Sheroky (2018)
Brinley Addington (2018)
Britnee Kellog (2019)
Brittney Spencer (2021)
Brooke Moriber (2021)


Callista Clark (2021)
Canaan Cox (2022)
Carolyn Miller (2018)
Cory Marks (2020)
CB30 (2020)
CJ Solar (2018)
Chase Wright (2021)
Chevel Shepherd (2020)
Clark Manson (2019)
Cody Purvis (2020)
Cody Webb (2019)
Cole Bradley (2020)
Conner Smith (2022)
Cooper Alan (2021)
Craig Campbell (2018)


David J (2022)
Davisson Brothers Band (2020)
Delta Rae (2018)
Donovan Woods (2019)
Drake Milligan (2021)
Drew Baldridge (2018)
Drew Green (2020)
Drew Parker (2020)
Dylan Marlowe (2022)
Dylan Schneider (2021)


Elizabeth Lyons (2022) + (2019)
Elvie Shane (2021)
Erin Kinsey (2021)
Erin Kirby (2021)


Georgia Webster (2021)
Grace Leer (2022)
Grant Gilbert (2022)


Haley Mae Campbell (2018)
Hannah Bethel (2019)
Hannah Dasher (2020)
Hannah Ellis (2019)
Harper Grae (2021)
Hayden Haddock (2019)
Heath Sanders (2019)
Home Free (2018)
Honey Country (2020)
Hudson Valley (2020)


J. Antonette (2019)
Jackson Michelson (2021)
Jacob Bryant (2020)
Jade Eagleson (2022)
Jaden Hamilton (2020)
James Barker Band (2022)
James Dupré (2020)
Jameson Rodgers (2018)
Jamie Gabrielle (2020)
Jay Bragg (2020)
Jenna Paulette (2021) + (2019)
Jennifer Smestad (2021)
Jillian Cardarelli (2022)
Jillian Jacqueline (2018)
Jimmie Allen (2018)
Joe Lasher (2018)
John King (2021) + (2019)
Jon Langston (2018)
Jon Wood (2019)
Jordan Rager (2020) + (2018)
Jordan Rowe (2020)
Jordyn Stoddard (2019)
Josh Kelley (2020)
Josh Kiser (2022)
Josh Melton (2020)
Josh Ross (2022)
Joshua Dylan Balis (2022)
Juna N Joey (2021)
Justin Fabus (2018)


Kaleb Lee (2019)
Kalie Shorr (2019)
Kameron Marlowe (2020)
Kären McCormick (2019)
Karen Waldrup (2018)
Karley Scott Collins (2022)
Kasey Tyndall (2021)
Kaylee Rutland (2018)
Kelleigh Bannen (2018)
Kelsey Lamb (2018)
Kirby Ai (2019)
Kolby Cooper (2021)
Kree Harrison (2019)
Kristen Merlin (2021)
Kyle Clark (2022)
Kylie Frey (2020)
Kylie Morgan (2019)


Laci Kaye Booth (2021)
Lauren Davidson (2018)
Lauren Duski (2019)
Leah Turner (2019)
Lena Stone (2019)
Lewis Brice (2018)
Lily Rose (2021)
Liv Charette (2020)
LJ (2019)
Logan Brill (2018)
Logan Crosby (2022)
Lori McKenna (2019)


MacKenzie Porter (2021) + (2020)
Madeline Consoer (2022)
Manny Blu (2020)
MaRynn Taylor (2021)
Matt Ferranti (2020)
Matt Koziol (2022)
Matt Roy (2022)
Matt Stell (2018)
Matt Williams (2018)
Maybe April (2018)
Mike Ryan (2018)
Minnie Murphy (2022)
Mitch Rossell (2021)
Morgan Johnston (2022)


Nashvillains (2022)
Nate Barnes (2021)
Nate Botsford (2019)
Nate Smith (2022)
Natalie Stovall (2018)
Nessa Lea (2021)
Nikki Briar (2020)
Niko Moon (2019)
Noah Guthrie (2022)
Noah Hicks (2021)
Nolan Sotillo (2021)


Parker McKay (2020)
Parmalee (2018)
Paulina Jayne (2020)
Peytan Porter (2022)
PJ North (2019)
Priscilla Block (2020)


Rachel Bradshaw (2022)
Rachele Lynae (2020)
Raleigh Keegan (2019)
Randy Rogers & Wade Bowen (2020)
Rayne Johnson (2019)
Renee Blair (2018)
Restless Road (2020)
Risa Binder (2018)
Rob Baird (2019)
Robert Counts (2020)
Robyn Ottolini (2022)
Roman Alexander (2021)
Ron Pope (2020)


Sacha (2021)
Sam Grow (2018)
Sam Williams (2019)
SaraBeth (2018)
Sean Stemaly (2020)
Seaforth (2019)
Seth Ennis (2022)
Shawn Austin (2022)
Sophia Scott (2022)
Southerland (2020)
Spencer Crandall (2021)
Spinn (2018)
Stephanie Quayle (2019)
Sundance Head (2018)
Swearingen & Kelli (2019)


Tara Thompson (2019)
Taryn Papa (2022)
Taylor Acorn (2019)
Tebey (2020)
Teddy Robb (2020) + (2018)
Tenille Arts (2021)
Tenille Townes (2018)
Tera Lynn Fister (2020)
Terra Bella (2019)
The Swon Brothers (2019)
The Young Fables (2022)
Tiera (2020)
Tiffany Woys (2019)
Tommy Cole (2018)
Tori Martin (2019)
Track 45 (2020)
Trent Harmon (2018)
Trey Lewis (2021)
Tristan Jackson (2018)
Troy Cartwright (2021)
Tyler Braden (2021)
Tyler Dial (2022)
Tyler Hilton (2019)


Valerie Ponzio (2018)


Walker Montgomery (2019)
Warren Zeiders (2021)
Whitney Duncan (2020)
Williams Honor (2020)
Willie Jones (2021)


Acoustic Jam: A Benefit Concert For Camp Broadcast

Sam Alex, creator of Camp Broadcast is inviting you to A Benefit Concert For Camp Broadcast featuring artists like Canaan Smith, Abby Anderson, and more. Learn more below.

We always love to support creatives in the industry, so we are so excited to share with you the incredible ticketed event coming soon. The ‘Acoustic Jam: A Benefit Concert For Camp Broadcast’ featuring Canaan Smith, Darryl Worley, Ray Fulcher, and Abby Anderson is officially scheduled for Wednesday, June 15th at Joe’s Live in Rosemont, Illinois. The incredible night of music helps raise money for Camp Broadcast.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Camp Broadcast, Camp Broadcast is a 1 week, masterclass experience for high school and college-aged aspiring journalists and broadcasters to put together a hosting reel, learn from professionals in the industry, and interview celebrities. Camp Broadcast was created by Sam Alex two years ago, during the pandemic.

“This week, 2 years ago because of Covid all these in-person internships were canceled […] I felt so bad. […] I just thought of ‘Camp Broadcast’ and asked my friends who worked in TV and Radio what they would think if I had a masterclass on Zoom,” shared Alex in our recent conversation. This idea sparked the now-live event.

“The coolest part is not just seeing them get their jobs, but the relationships they form with the guests, the celebrity mentors, but especially with each other, with their fellow campers,” shared the founder.” Alex later shared, “At the end of the week the campers will have a hosting reel, a very valuable 2-3 minute reel when they apply for internships and jobs of them interviewing actual newsmakers and celebrities.”

Despite all of the incredible good that has come out of Camp Broadcast, Alex’s goal is for the camp to be free for all who wish to attend. In order to make that happen, the upcoming benefit concert is essential.


To attend the Acoustic Jam: A Benefit Concert for Camp Broadcast, purchase your tickets here. Continue to support the incredible organization by following them on social media as well and spreading the word!

To keep up with Camp Broadcast, follow along on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about upcoming announcements and releases.

Follow us on Instagram and TikTok for more.

Tenille Townes’ Talks Writing Music, Tour & More [Exclusive Interview]

In our exclusive interview, we chatted with Tenille Townes all about writing and recording music, her tour, and much more. Read all about it below.

Tenille Townes is kicking off 2022 with a bang. In addition to headlining her first American Tour, Townes has also released a handful of brand new songs that are bound to stop you in your tracks. We had the chance to catch up with the singer-songwriter on touring, her love of Patty Griffin, and her courageous songwriting.

Tenille Townes has become one of country music’s greatest songwriters since releasing her debut single to radio in 2018. Her material has always been the perfect combination of fun, intense, and meaningful, but lately, her newest songs have been more vulnerable and intimate than ever.

“I always just trust the music and where it feels like the song is carrying me,” she tells us. “On both “Villain In Me” and “When’s It Gonna Happen,” in the middle of that process, even vocally to my co-writers, I was like ‘oof this is really scary and honest. Am I really saying this?’ And I just felt the song saying yes… as I was writing them, I think the most therapeutic thought that [helped me] step past that initial fear of talking about these things, is ‘oh, I can’t be the only person that’s feeling this way’. So if that’s the case, then I’d love for all of us to be able to be honest in it together. That’s definitely given me so much courage.”

Townes is gearing up for the second leg of her headlining tour in the states, and she shared how excited she is to share new material and fan favorites. “I loved getting to do my first-ever headlining tour in Canada to close out the year, and the shows were so much fun. My heart’s been so ready to get back to that this month. I can’t wait to be able to play the songs from The Lemonade Stand and sing them together with everybody, and also sing these new songs! I’m excited to bring everybody on hopefully an emotional ride and be all vulnerable and intimate with our emotions and also kind of throw caution to the wind and have a good time. I want it to be a joyful escape for everyone.”

In modern country music, there are very few major label artists who have the guts and perhaps bravery to write about what Townes does. Her music has the kind of vulnerability that really only has been heard on a song like “Mad Mission” by Patty Griffin, or “You Won’t Even Know I’m Gone” by Lori McKenna. These two artist-writers also happen to be some of her biggest inspirations.

“Patty Griffin is my hero, her and Lori McKenna to me are songwriting legends. They just set the bar for what it means to be honest, truthful, and raw. What I love so much about Patty Griffin’s music is that it feels like she’s just holding open the door, and you feel your soul or your story gets whatever it needs out of listening to her music, and that’s such a huge inspiration to me, as I’m writing. Like, I think about how this music can shape somebody’s experience and open that door for listeners.”

If you have ever had a thought that you’ve been a little bit scared to admit out loud, it’s possible that Tenille Townes has already written that song. Her electrifying, vibrant, and, vulnerable music is one that has the potential to change the landscape of modern country music. If you have the opportunity to get out and see her live show this year, you should take advantage of that. You might just find some answers to those thoughts.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news and announcements about future Tenille Townes releases.

To keep up with Tenille Townes, follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Tenille Townes’ music is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released tunes on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.

Chris Lane Has Big, Big Plans For 2022 [Exclusive Interview]

In our exclusive interview, we chatted with Chris Lane all about his upcoming “Fill Them Boots” tour. Read more below!

Chris Lane has had quite the year already, and it’s just getting started. We had the opportunity to chat with him leading up to his “Fill Them Boots” tour.

A lot has changed in Chris Lane’s life since he released his sophomore album in 2018: he got married to his wife Lauren Bushnell, had two life-changing hit songs on country radio, his son Dutton was born, and now, he is embarking on his headlining “Fill Them Boots” tour.

“It’s been so good to be at home, especially these first [seven months] that Dutton’s been born…  I’ve really enjoyed it… I’m very very excited to get back on the road. There’s gonna be quite a few weekends that we bring Lauren and Dutton out, and we’ll still get to be together a lot, so I am very excited.”

Lane has released a plethora of new material in the past year: songs like the current single “Fill Them Boots” to the HIXTAPE collab “Small Town On It” to the latest release “Stop Coming Over”. If fans are excited to finally hear these new songs live, Lane is just as over the moon. “I think as an artist there is nothing like being in front of people. The energy is much different, and hearing them scream the words back to you is honestly the best part about creating music and being an artist. A lot of these songs, I haven’t even been able to play live yet, which is not normal. Usually, you record a song and you’re out on tour and you get to start playing it immediately.”

As his personal life has changed, his songwriting and even touring lifestyle have changed a bit since his last “Big, Big Plans” headlining tour. “When Lauren and I first started dating, it gave me a whole new inspiration to write about and a whole new set of feelings. And when we got married, the same kind of thing. It transitions your mindset a little bit,” he explained to us. “Even more so when you have a child – it all definitely plays into the kind of songs I write. It’s softened my heart a little bit more.”

When it comes to putting together a setlist for this tour, because of streaming analytics, he is able to know where in the world certain fans like certain songs. Using this data, he will be able to customize the setlists on the tour. Additionally, he’s most excited about connecting with the audience again. “I’m a big moments guy – I love having a lot of moments in my set. Whether that’s bringing somebody up on stage, usually a little girl, to sing ‘For Her’… I’ll probably keep that moment in my set.” If you haven’t gotten tickets for Chris Lane’s “Fill Them Boots” tour, it’s a show you’re not going to want to miss.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news and announcements about future Chris Lane releases.

To keep up with Chris Lane, follow him on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Chris Lane’s music is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released tunes on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.


High Valley Shares Two Brand New Songs in Exclusive Interview

High Valley is back with two brand new songs, “Whatever It Takes” and “Never Not,” out now. Learn more about their new music below in our exclusive interview.

High Valley are one of those country acts that have firmly planted themselves in their staying power. The Canadian-group know exactly who they are. They continue to share music with their fanbase that shows their signature sound and their evolution. Today, High Valley drop two brand new songs, “Whatever It Takes” and “Never Not.”

According to lead singer, Brad Rempel, in our recent interview, these songs mark the beginning of a new album coming in the Spring of 2022 for the band. “With these first two, we wanted to kind of let fans hear “Never Not” so they knew that our feet weren’t stuck in concrete, and that we are always evolving and kind of show the future, but also let them hear “Whatever It Takes” to let them know that we’re not anywhere close to sick of those boot-stomping, bluegrass anthem thing.”

“Never Not” shows off a fresh, pop-country sound of the band. Lyrically, the song expresses love in a unique and enticing way. Rempel shares that the title of the song was inspired by a statement that a pro Hockey player said to him while at an event together. As if that story is not wild enough, the song was actually written via Zoom, after a crazy string of events found Rempel writing and demo-ing the song in a work-share space.

“I’m whispering on my phone, ‘hey guys, my phone died, but I got this idea for the second verse.’ So we literally finished writing that song and recorded all the audio to make sure we all had it down on our iPhones by me sitting in a community workspace,” he shares, laughing. He later added, “The second verse is one of the most real things ever. ‘It’s a crowded room, but I still feel all alone and I just had to hear your voice on the phone’ and that’s so true for my wife and my two boys.”

On the other hand, “Whatever It Takes” features High Valley’s signature bluegrass, anthemic sound. Penned by Rempel with collaborators, Jon Nite and Ben Stennis, the track begs for the stage and a live crowd. The song was written during a writer’s trip to Florida, after the trio decided to call it a wrap.

“It just felt so natural, when you’re not trying to write a song, when you’re not trying to be an artist, just doing what I do. It is very old school, Americana-bluegrass, hipster, organic, insert buzzword here. But that kind of acoustic driven stuff and thankfully my buddies know how to make it to a European soccer stadium, anthem kind of song.”

Rempel adds, “When we combine those two worlds that’s when High Valley finds its magic.” We tend to agree!


High Valley releases two brand new songs, out now on all streaming platforms.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news and announcements about future High Valley releases.

To keep up with High Valley follow them on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook.

“Whatever It Takes” and “Never Not” is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released tunes on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.

Country Swag Founder, Stephanie Wagner Featured on ‘Unplugged’

Interested in learning a bit more about Country Swag and our Founder, Stephanie Wagner? Check this out!

Country Swag Founder, Stephanie Wagner was asked to be a part of a new series called “Unplugged”. Created by two college students, Kaylee & Kelly who major in Film & Television, “Unplugged” tells the stories and experiences of successful women in various media fields.

In this episode, Stephanie talks about the start of Country Swag, running a country music company in New York City, the challenges of the business through COVID and she debunks some myths of the job!

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music.

For new recently released tunes, follow our ‘New Country Music’ playlist.

Plus, follow us on Instagram and TikTok for more.

Exclusive Interview with MacKenzie Porter Talking All Things Music & More

Country Swag recently chatted with MacKenzie Porter, almost exactly a year after we first introduced her in our Artist Spotlight Series. Read our exclusive interview as we caught up with the songstress below!

Mackenzie Porter

Mackenzie Porter, Photo Credit: Bree Marie Fish

MacKenzie Porter has had quite the year, so far. Between new music, receiving multiple nominations for a slew of awards, and joining a national tour with Jordan Davis, the budding star has showed no signs of slowing down. 

On the topic of tour, Porter shares, “My favorite part of tour so far is hearing people get excited and sing back every single lyric of Thinking ‘Bout You!” She adds, “So many people know that song, and it’s such a cool feeling.”

Earlier this year, Porter collaborated with Dustin Lynch on “Thinking ‘Bout You,” which is currently sitting in the Top 15 at Country Radio. The duet has already completely changed her career – it’s one of the biggest hits of the year – and it has also given Porter a new music friend to celebrate wins with. “Dustin is such a good guy,” she begins. “He is truly a beautiful human being. He’s been taking me out on the road with him and he’s included me in so much stuff. It’s been really cool,” Porter adds.


“Dustin & I were talking earlier today about getting to celebrate those wins together. Normally, as an artist, it’s just yourself and you’re like, ‘go me!’. But, when you have another person, you can kind of feed off of each other. Him and I go back and forth texting like, ‘it’s 16 this week, it’s 15 this week!'”

The incredibly infectious track is not the first big hit under Porter’s belt. Her Drinkin’ Songs project includes multiple singles that went #1 and top 5 in Canada. The project also includes deeper cuts that fans still really gravitate towards, like the cleverly catchy “Drive Thru”.


Porter shared the story behind that song with us during our conversation. “I wrote that with Natalie Hemby and Tommy English. We were in Tommy’s basement studio and Natalie, who’s one of my favorite writers, came in with the title,” she says. “’Drive-Thru what you’re talking about.’ Like how could we make this like a country, like a sassy, Lizzo thing? We were just thinking about what is that for girls? being like, ‘oh, hell no, you’re not going to call me whenever you want.’ It was a really fun day writing that.”

As for what’s next, Porter is currently working on her next project slated for release early next year. Hinting at what’s to come, Porter tells us, “It’s a whole new project, and one song ‘Unlonely Me’ is out now.” She added,  “I cut a new one yesterday called “Pickup” and I’m really, really excited for it. I just feel like it could be a special one.” 


It is safe to say that Porter is on her way to taking over country music in the United States. She already is back home in Canada and it’s only a matter of time before she makes her name a mainstay here too. To catch MacKenzie Porter on tour with Jordan Davis, visit her website here

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about future MacKenzie Porter releases.

To keep up with MacKenzie Porter follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

MacKenzie Porter’s music is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music here on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.


Who Is Cooper Alan? The Story Behind His Journey to Country Music

Country music artist, Cooper Alan joins us to chat about tour, his viral success on TikTok, taking ownership of your music and more. Learn more in the interview below.

Cooper Alan

Cooper Alan

The Beginning:

Cooper Alan starts off our conversation with explaining how he came to love country music. “I’ve gone through all the phases of loving different genres. Country has always been the most dominant,” Alan began. “Music was always something my family enjoyed and liked, but I’m the only one that plays. We would always go to concerts and share music with each other – it was a way we bonded with each other.”

Alan attended his first concert, Tom Petty, when he was five years old. “I slept through the whole show,” he laughed. Even though he wasn’t awake, it ignited a spark. He learned his first instrument in elementary school and second in middle school – the trumpet and guitar respectively. “I started playing guitar in 6th grade because I figured girls probably thought it was cooler than a trumpet. I started my first band in 8th grade and played through all of high school and college. My music taste always comes back to country music.”

He started cultivating his songwriting when he was a teenager, but it’s really performing his music that is his true passion. “I’ve been most inspired by the entertainers that I’ve seen live. Live performing is my thing… so concerts have inspired me probably even more than music has.”

After high school, Alan went to UNC Chapel Hill for undergrad, and he received not only a college education, but he received a hands-on education in live performing and entertaining. “Some people can move to Nashville when they’re 16 or 18, and be totally fine, but I just kinda needed to learn how to entertain a little more and kind of cut my teeth – it was probably the most valuable part of college.”

The Turning Point:

When the world paused in March 2020, it gave Alan a moment to brainstorm new ways of reaching fans and being creative. “I couldn’t play shows, so I had to find something to do. My girlfriend mentioned that I should get on TikTok, and I thought it was just kids dancing!” Alan recalled laughing. “I started digging in and studying the app and had my first video go viral and that’s when it really hit me.”

Over a year after starting TikTok, Alan’s singles have racked up millions of streams, and he has even signed and created a publishing company with his mentor, legendary songwriter Victoria Shaw, called “Cooped Up” records. “‘New Normal’ started going viral on TikTok and people started to care about my original music. Victoria and I had an opportunity to treat this like a real business and record company and that’s what we decided to do. We’ve worked together since I’ve gotten to Nashville, so she’s been my champion this whole time, so it was a no-brainer.”


Alan has recently finished the first leg of his In Real Life tour with artists Alexandra Kay and Thomas Mac, as they’re currently making their way across the country. “It’s been so wild and awesome to be on tour. Before COVID, I couldn’t go play a show where people would come and be there for my original music and be there to see me… it was the first time I really experienced any of that. It’s a really special feeling.”

As for what’s next for Alan, new music and tour dates are already starting to come to fruition. He is coming to the New York area this Saturday night at Mulchay’s, grab tickets here, and will continue down the east coast before heading South to Texas and Louisiana. He’s an artist you won’t want to miss out on.


Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news and announcements about future Cooper Alan releases.

To keep up with Cooper Alan, follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Cooper Alan’s music is available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released tunes on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.

Heath Sanders: Interview + ‘Common Ground’ – EP Review

Rising artist and songwriter, Heath Sanders’ debut EP, Common Ground is officially available now, January 29th on all streaming platforms. Listen to the brand new record and take a look below as we dive a little deeper into the new music.

Heath Sanders’ Debut EP 'Common Ground' is out now, January 29th

Heath Sanders’ Debut EP ‘Common Ground’ is out now, January 29th

Almost two years ago to the day, an aspiring singer-songwriter, Heath Sanders shared a video of himself covering Chris Stapleton’s “Either Way.” The video went viral, garnering over a million views, and ultimately opening doors for him in Nashville. Flash forward to today, the singer signed a record deal with Big Machine Label Group’s Valory Music Co. imprint, home to artists like Thomas Rhett, Tyler Rich, and Justin Moore. Now, his debut EP Common Ground is officially available everywhere you listen to music.

In just four songs, Sanders evokes such talent, charisma, and story-telling that it’s instantly captivating. With a style similar to our favorite ’90s country artists, as well as, Luke Combs and even Stapleton himself, Sanders is one to look out for. According to Sanders in our exclusive interview, “Common Ground is really a big feeler to see what everybody is drawn to, and which side of me they love, and want to hear more of. […] We just want to give people a sample of what I have on deck.”

The EP is bookended by two incredibly touching slow-jams. Beginning with our personal favorite, the title track, “Common Ground,” the singer puts his vocals on display with heartfelt lyrics. Written with his friends and fellow songwriters, Jay Brunswick and Jeremy Bussey, Sanders felt that this was a message that had to be heard, especially due to the climate of the world. Moreover, the song depicts his personal journey of learning and growing as an artist.

“I’ve got to see a lot of the world and interact with a lot of different people, and it’s really woken me up to how similar we all are at the end of the day,” he shared with us, “I think at the end of the day, we all want happiness, peace, and we want to work hard, and raise our kids.”

“We’re all on a different journey / We’re all finding our own way / We’re all living, we’re all learning”

Sanders continues to share his vulnerable side with fans on the closing track “Can’t Undo I Do.” The song paints a picture of going through hard times in a relationship, but ultimately remembering that things will not unravel so quickly. Singing, “I know it stings right now, but we both know the truth / You can’t undo I do,” Sanders quietly, but profoundly states a universal truth.

The other two songs off the record, “Old School’s In” and “Love Needs Makin’” are just as special, but lean more into the singer’s upbeat and rock side. The former is slated to be Sanders’ first single to country radio. “That song is representative of who I am and where I come from, and how proud I am to be from a place like that,” exclaims Sanders. The song is fun, electric, and sure to be hit on the stage and on the airwaves.

Finally, “Love Needs Makin’” is that comforting, familiar everyday-man song that you just cannot get enough of. Uptempo and lyrically-sublime, the track is everything you want a country song to be. Sanders truly knocks it out of the park with this blue-collar tune that country fans are sure to go crazy for.

With only four songs, Sanders proves that he is one to look out for. When he is able to get back on the road, we are sure that these tracks are going to blow up even more. Despite his natural talent and hardworking nature, the singer-songwriter reminds us that he does it all for the fans. “My goal is to get back out there, so I can start hugging necks because I owe a lot of people a debt of gratitude,” he shares, ending our interview on a hopeful note that live music will prevail.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about future Heath Sanders releases.

To keep up with Heath Sanders, follow him on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

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Common Ground EP is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music fix.

Exclusive: Chris Bandi Chats About “Would Have Loved Her” & Working with Nelly

In our latest exclusive interview with one of our 2020 Artists to Watch, Chris Bandi, he chats about releasing an EP in the middle of a pandemic, how his new single “Would Have Loved Her” has touched fans across the country, and working with fellow St. Louis native, Nelly. Read the full interview below.

March 11th, 2020 was the last time we saw Chris Bandi, which also happened to be the very last show we attended before the world shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After our Swag Session in New York City, Bandi played a show with Ray Fulcher and Matt Stell on the Everywhere But On Tour at Gramercy Theatre. Fans who were lucky enough to be in attendance that night got to hear some brand new music from the rising artist before anyone else.

Just moments after stepping off stage, Bandi, his band, and the rest of the venue were basically coming to the realization that things would be quite different at least for the foreseeable future as restrictions were put in place and all events going forward were canceled. Like so many other artists, he took to social media to continue to connect with fans and get his music out there. Performing on Facebook and Instagram Lives, he previewed his new music and watched as it began to strike a chord with fans.

“Music is one of those things where you can put your favorite album on and for 45 minutes you don’t have to think about anything other than that music,” he tells us in our recent interview. “You don’t have to worry about the world going on around you, the lack of the world going on around you, it was such a great escape for people.” His EP was originally slated for release in the summer of 2020, but since it was already written and recorded before the pandemic, Bandi, his label, and management team decided to bump up the release to May. Read our full review of his self titled debut here.

With the world on pause, fans were able to really connect differently and listen more intently to the music that was being released, something that was particularly true about Bandi’s next radio single, “Would Have Loved Her”. He tells us that the process of writing this song was important to him, and he knew it needed time and delicate songwriting to convey the emotions he felt. He sat down with Zach Kale one day in a write and brought the title to him, explaining that his grandfather had passed away just six months before he met his girlfriend. Kale shared that his father had passed away before he had met his wife and the connection to the story was solidified. “He and I just started sharing stories about his dad, my grandpa, my girlfriend, and his wife, and it was therapeutic. To air it out and talk about it, have someone who understands,” he tells us.

He sent the demo to his team and they immediately knew it had to be included on his project. Since its release, “Would Have Loved Her” has resonated with so many fans who have lost loved ones and Bandi explains how that has made the song mean that much more. “To see and read the stories, people sharing pictures of that person that meant so much to them, telling us their story. It’s been amazing and as a songwriter, it’s really all you can ask for, people are hearing your song and they are touched by it. “

One thing we were excited to discuss was the fact that Bandi recently had the opportunity to write with hip-hop superstar and country crossover extraordinaire, Nelly. Nelly announced that he will be releasing a “country-influenced” project, Heartland this year and as a fellow St. Louis native, Bandi being able to work professionally with someone who has inspired him for so many years was a dream come true. “It was a full-circle moment for me. Growing up in St. Louis, he was our guy, we had Nelly. Everybody idolized him. People would joke when I was in college and told them I was from St. Louis, they would always ask “Do you know Nelly?” and it’s kind of crazy because now I Do!” he laughs.

The reception from his self-titled EP has been incredible and with “Would Have Loved Her” heading to country radio, Chris Bandi is looking ahead to a better 2021 where he can finally get back to playing shows and meeting fans. “I can not wait to play shows. That’s what I’ve been doing for the last 10 years of my life, playing shows and getting out and traveling to the shows, meeting people and last year was just ripped away from us.” We couldn’t agree more that it is something we all can’t wait to go back to normal and we are looking forward to watching his career blossom even more.

Fans can join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about upcoming Chris Bandi announcements and releases.

To keep up with Chris Bandi follow him on InstagramTwitter, and Facebook.

Chris Bandi EP is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more new recently released music here on our ‘New Country Music’ playlist. Be sure to give the playlist a follow for your weekly new country music.