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BREAKING: Chris Stapleton Reveals 2021 ‘All-American Road Show’ Tour Dates

Chris Stapleton has officially released tour dates for The All-American Road Show kicking off this July and ending in June 2022. Check out the full list of dates below.

Joining Chris Stapleton on tour will be varying show openers such as Caylee Hammack, Dwight Yoakam, Elle King, Jamey Johnson, Kendell Marvel, Margo Price, Mavis Staples, Nikki Lane, Sheryl Crow, The Dirty Knobs with Mike Campbell, The Highwomen, The Marcus King Band, Willie Nelson, and Yola.

Ticket sales for new shows begin April 30th. Sign up for presale tickets at StapletonFanClub.com. Visit chrisstapleton.com/tour for more information. For any further previous ticket inquiries, fans are advised to reach out to point of purchase.

Join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about future Chris Stapleton releases.

Check out the dates below for the full list of shows…

 

CHRIS STAPLETON’S “ALL-AMERICAN ROAD SHOW”

New shows in BOLD, and on-sale April 30, May 7 or June 11 at 10:00am local time, see below for details

July 17—Chicago, IL—Wrigley Field%%

July 28—Gilford, NH—Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion†

July 29—Gilford, NH— Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion†

July 30—Gilford, NH—Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion† (on-sale June 11)

August 5—Cuyahoga Falls, OH—Blossom Music Center‡

August 6—Clarkston, MI—DTE Energy Music Theatre‡ (on-sale April 30)

August 7—Clarkston, MI—DTE Energy Music Theatre* (on-sale April 30)

August 12—Charlotte, NC—PNC Music Pavilion‡

August 13—Raleigh, NC—Coastal Credit Union Music Park at Walnut Creek‡

August 14—Bristow, VA—Jiffy Lube Live‡ (on-sale June 11)

August 21—Arlington, TX—Globe Life Field#

August 26—Tampa, FL—MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre^ (on-sale April 30)

August 27—Alpharetta, GA—Ameris Bank Amphitheatre^ (on-sale June 11)

August 28—Atlanta, GA—Cellaris Amphitheatre at Lakewood^ (on-sale June 11)

September 16—Maryland Heights, MO—Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre+ (on-sale June 11)

September 17—Birmingham, AL—Oak Mountain Amphitheatre+ (on-sale April 30)

September 18—Orange Beach, AL—The Wharf Amphitheatre+ (on-sale May 7)

September 23—Bethel, NY—Bethel Woods Center for the Arts° (on-sale April 30)

September 24—Burgettstown, PA—Pavilion at Star Lake° (on-sale April 30)

September 25—Noblesville, IN—Ruoff Music Center§ (on-sale June 11)

September 30—Virginia Beach, VA—Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater% (on-sale April 30)

October 1—Camden, NJ—BB&T Pavilion%

October 2—Mansfield, MA—Xfinity Center%

October 7—Syracuse, NY—St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview^

October 8—New York, NY—Madison Square Garden+

October 9—Holmdel, NJ—PNC Bank Arts Center^

October 14—Columbia, MO—Mizzou Arena+

October 15—Lincoln, NE—Pinnacle Bank Arena+

October 16—Sioux Falls, SD—Denny Sanford PREMIER Center+

October 21—Cincinnati, OH—Riverbend Music Center+ (on-sale June 11)

October 22—Nashville, TN—Bridgestone Arena+

October 23—Nashville, TN—Bridgestone Arena+

October 28—Lubbock, TX—United Supermarket Arena**

October 29—Albuquerque, NM—Isleta Amphitheater**

October 30—Phoenix, AZ—Ak-Chin Pavilion**

November 4—Austin, TX—Frank Erwin Center**

November 5—Tulsa, OK—BOK Center**

November 6—The Woodlands, TX—Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion** (on-sale April 30)

November 18—Orlando, FL—Amway Center^

November 19—Estero, FL—Hertz Arena^

November 20—West Palm Beach, FL—iTHINK Financial Amphitheatre^ (on-sale April 30)

December 3—Memphis, TN—FedEx Forum+ (on-sale April 30)

December 4—Biloxi, MS—Mississippi Coast Coliseum+

December 5—Knoxville, TN—Thompson-Boling Arena+

April 20, 2022—Toledo, OH—Huntington Center^^

April 21, 2022—Columbus, OH—Schottenstein Center^^

April 23, 2022—Lexington, KY—A Concert for Kentucky – Kroger Field##

June 2, 2022—Nampa, ID—Ford Idaho Center Arena††

June 3, 2022—Ridgefield, WA—Sunlight Supple Amphitheater††

June 4, 2022—George, WA—Gorge Amphitheater††

June 11, 2022—San Bernardino, CA—Glen Helen Amphitheater‡‡

June 16, 2022—Bakersfield, CA—Mechanics Bank Arena††

June 17, 2022—Wheatland, CA—Toyota Amphitheatre††

June 18, 2022—Mountain View, CA—Shoreline Amphitheatre††

June 23, 2022—West Valley City, UT—Usana Amphitheater§§

June 24, 2022—Denver, CO—Ball Arena§§

June 25, 2022—Denver, CO—Ball Arena§§

“ALL-AMERICAN ROAD SHOW” SPECIAL GUESTS

%%with special guests The Highwomen, Mavis Staples and The Dirty Knobs with Mike Campbell

†with special guests Elle King and Nikki Lane

‡with special guests Elle King and Kendell Marvel

*with special guests Yola and Kendell Marvel

#with special guests Wille Nelson, Jamey Johnson and Yola

^with special guests Sheryl Crow and Kendell Marvel

+with special guests The Marcus King Band and Yola

°with special guests Margo Price and Kendell Marvel

  • with special guests TBD

%with special guests The Marcus King Band and Caylee Hammack

**with special guests Jamey Johnson and Yola

^^with special guests Margo Price and Yola

##with special guests Willie Nelson & Family, Sheryl Crow and Yola

2021 ACM Awards: The Complete Recap – Winners, Performances & More

Last Night, April 18th, The 56th Annual ACM Awards show aired live on CBS from Nashville. Hosted by Keith Urban and Mickey Guyton, the special show was full of one-of-a-kind moments and epic performances as the country music family honored the highest talents of 2021 celebrating the best of the best in the genre.

Nashville’s brightest stars, and even some real, non-cardboard cutout fans, headed to music city for the special night. Like last year, the show took place over several locations across Nashville including the Station Inn, Bluebird Café, Riverfront Park, Ryman Auditorium, and the Grand Ole Opry. While many received much-deserved honors and recognition throughout the night, it was ultimately Luke Bryan who took home the show’s most prestigious award, Entertainer of the Year for the third time in his career.

The night was full of first-time performances and collaborations. Miranda Lambert and Elle King kicked off the show with their exciting, cross-genre smash, “Drunk (And I Don’t Wanna Go Home).”

This was followed by Chris Young and Kane Brown’s chart-climbing hit, “Famous Friends.” Brown’s video for “Worldwide Beautiful” won Video of the Year earlier this week as well. Lambert took the stage again to sing backing vocals for Chris Stapleton on their rendition of his emotional tune, “Maggie’s Song” from his latest album, Starting Over. The record was awarded Album of the Year later in the show.

Right before Thomas Rhett asked fans “What’s Your Country Song?” he debuted his newest track, “Country Again,” off his upcoming record of the same name, due out next Friday, April 30th. Blanco Brown announced the first award of the night, Group of the Year, to Old Dominion, making it their fourth consecutive win in the category.

One of country music’s favorite couples, Maren Morris and Ryan Hurd sang their latest love song “Chasing After You” making for a spectacular duet, giving off Tim McGraw and Faith Hill vibes.  Next, Lady A performed their latest female-empowerment anthem, “Like a Lady” at Riverfront Park. Later, Darius Rucker presented Morris with the Song of the Year for “The Bones.” She thanked her co-writers and the person who inspired the song, her husband, Hurd.

Country music wasn’t the only genre represented last night. Dierks Bentley paid tribute to bluegrass music and the late owner of the Station Inn, JT Gray, who passed away last month, with a performance of “Pride (In The Name of Love) alongside The War and Treaty. Carrie Underwood, who honored women in country music at last year’s ACMs with a melody of hits, performed a melody of Christian songs from her latest album, My Savior last night, including “Amazing Grace,” “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” “Old Rugged Cross,” and “How Great Thou Art.” She was joined by gospel artist, CeCe Winans.

Lambert took the stage for the third and final time alongside Jack Ingram and Jon Randall to perform “In His Arms,” from their upcoming project, The Marfa Tapes. Jimmie Allen, who earlier this week was awarded Best New Male Artist, was surprised by Brad Paisley who snuck up on him at the Bluebird Café to join him in singing their collaborative track and current single, “Freedom Was A Highway”.

“I Hope Your Happy Now,” which won Musical Event of the Year earlier this week, also won the Single of the Year during the show. Lee Brice and Carly Pearce showed their excitement walking up to the stage. The two displayed their dominant vocals on the number one song later in the show, as well.

Kenny Chesney delivered a powerful performance of his new single, “Knowing You” from the Ryman Auditorium. After the song, members of the country community who lost their lives this past year — Mac Davis, JT Gray, Charley Pride, and many others — were honored on the screen. Chesney later joined Kelsea Ballerini on stage to honor Knoxville, Tennessee in an intimate performance of their song, “Half of My Hometown.”

Country icon, Alan Jackson returned to the ACM stage last night with performances of “Drive” and “Always Be My Baby,” in honor of his daughter’s recent wedding. Another country legend, Blake Shelton sang his debut single “Austin” in honor of its 20thanniversary, then followed it with a performance of his most recent single, “Minimum Wage.” After, Dan + Shay were awarded with another Duo of the Year, making it their third-straight. They performed their touching new single, “Glad You Exist” earlier in the show.

Both hosts got their chance to take the stage – Mickey Guyton sang “Hold On” from the motion picture Breakthrough and Keith Urban displayed his guitar skills during his performance of “Tumbleweed,” from his latest album, THE SPEED OF NOW Part 1.

Reigning ACM Entertainer of the Year, Thomas Rhett took home the Male Artist of the Year, while Maren Morris won Female Artist of the Year. She gave recognition to all the hard-working ladies in the category during her speech.

Before the Entertainer of the Year award was given to Luke Bryan, Little Big Town performed their fun, current single, “Wine, Beer, Whiskey” on the streets of Lower Broadway in Nashville. Brothers Osborne, who previously performed “Not For Everyone,” closed out the night with another song from their Skeletons album, “Dead Man’s Curve.”

Other notable performances included Eric Church, who sang a song from his brand-new album, Heart, “Bunch of Nothing;” Luke Combs, who was backed by an entire orchestra sang “Forever After All;” Ashley McBryde gave a fiery performance of her song “Martha Divine;” and Gabby Barrett, who took home New Female Artist of the Year earlier this week, sang her single “The Good Ones.”

Click here to see a full list of winners and follow us on Instagram and Twitter for more special moments from the show.

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

To keep up with the Academy of Country Music follow along here on InstagramTwitter, and Facebook.

Check out the full list of winners from the show here and follow along on Instagram, @NYCountrySwag for more special moments from the show.

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

BREAKING! 2021 ACM Awards Entertainer of the Year is…

Tonight, April 18th, 2021, The 56th Annual ACM Awards show aired live on CBS from Nashville. Hosted by Keith Urban and Mickey Guyton, the special show was full of one-of-a-kind moments and epic performances as the country music family honored the highest talents of 2021 celebrating the best of the best.

Ending the three-hour-long show, was the most prestigious award of the night, “Entertainer of the Year”. Up for the honor were Luke Combs, Eric Church, Thomas Rhett, Chris Stapleton, and Luke Bryan. Ultimately taking home the award was: LUKE BRYAN

Check out the full list of winners from the show here and follow along on Instagram, @NYCountrySwag for more special moments from the show.

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

2021 ACM Awards – Full List of Winners

The 2021 ACM Awards took place on Sunday, April 18th at 8PM ET on CBS. Check below for the full list of winners.

Normally airing from Las Vegas, this year the annual event returned to Nashville for a live broadcast for the second consecutive year following significant changes to the show due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The show featured incredible performances happening across different iconic music venues in Music City like Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, and The Bluebird Cafe.

The 56th Annual ACM Awards included epic performances from the biggest names in country music, including Carrie Underwood, Luke Combs, Miranda Lambert, Eric Church, Thomas Rhett, Taylor Swift, Maren Morris & Ryan Hurd, Chris Young & Kane Brown, Dierks Bentley, and so many more.

Check out the list below for all of the night’s winners and follow along on Instagram, @NYCountrySwag for more special moments from the show.

FULL LIST OF 2021 ACM AWARDS WINNERS —

 

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR:
Luke Bryan ** WINNER

Eric Church
Luke Combs
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

 

GROUP OF THE YEAR:
Lady A
Little Big Town
Old Dominion ** WINNER
The Cadillac Three
The Highwomen

 

MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Dierks Bentley
Eric Church
Luke Combs
Thomas Rhett ** WINNER
Chris Stapleton

 

FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Ashley McBryde
Maren Morris ** WINNER
Carly Pearce

 

DUO OF THE YEAR:
Brooks & Dunn
Brothers Osborne
Dan + Shay ** WINNER
Florida Georgia Line
Maddie & Tae

 

SINGLE OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]:
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: Vanner Records/RCA Records Nashville

I Hope – Gabby Barrett
– Producers: Ross Copperman, Zach Kale
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

I Hope You’re Happy Now – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice ** WINNER
– Producers: busbee
– Record Label: Big Machine Records / Curb Records

More Hearts Than Mine – Ingrid Andress
– Producers: Ingrid Andress, Sam Ellis
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

The Bones – Maren Morris
– Producer: Greg Kurstin
– Record Label: Columbia Nashville

 

NEW FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Ingrid Andress
Tenille Arts
Gabby Barrett ** WINNER
Mickey Guyton
Caylee Hammack

 

NEW MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Jimmie Allen ** WINNER
Travis Denning
HARDY
Cody Johnson
Parker McCollum

 

SONG OF THE YEAR
*Awarded to Songwriter(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s):
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
– Songwriter(s): Luke Dick, Miranda Lambert, Natalie Hemby
– Publishers: Emileon Songs; Little Louder Songs; Pink Dog Publishing; Songs of Universal, INC; Sony ATV Tree Publishing; Wrucke for You Publishing

One Night Standards – Ashley McBryde
– Songwriter(s): Ashley McBryde, Nicolette Hayford, Shane McAnally
– Publishers: Canned Biscuit Songs; Smackworks Music; Smack Blue, LLC; Smackstreet Music; Tempo Investments; Warner Geo Met Ric Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp

Some People Do – Old Dominion
– Songwriter(s): Jesse Frasure, Matt Ramsey, Thomas Rhett, Shane McAnally
– Publishers: Carrot Seed Songs; EMI Blackwood Music INC; Smackville Music; Songs of ROC Nation; Telemitry Rhythm House Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp; Smack Hits; Tempo Investments; Warner Gro Met Ric Music

Starting Over – Chris Stapleton
– Songwriter(s): Chris Stapleton, Mike Henderson
– Publishers: I Wrote These Songs; Straight Six Music; WC Music Corp

The Bones – Maren Morris ** WINNER
– Songwriter(s): Jimmy Robbins, Maren Morris, Laura Veltz
– Publishers: Big Machine Music, LLC; Extraordinary Alien Publishing; International Dog Music; Oh Denise Publishing; Round Hill Songs; Warner-Tamerlane
Publishing Corp.

 

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
*Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s):
Born Here Live Here Die Here – Luke Bryan
– Producers: Jeff Stevens, Jody Stevens
– Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

Mixtape Vol. 1 – Kane Brown
– Producers: Andrew Goldstein, Charlie Handsome, Dann Huff, Lindsay Rimes
– Record Label: RCA Nashville

Never Will – Ashley McBryde
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

Skeletons – Brothers Osborne
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: EMI Records Nashville

Starting Over – Chris Stapleton ** WINNER
– Producers: Chris Stapleton, Dave Cobb
– Record Label: Mercury Nashville

 

Follow us on Twitter and check out some of our live tweets from the show, @NYCOUNTRYSWAG.

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

Chris Stapleton Lands #1 Song with “Starting Over”

Chris Stapleton lands the number one song in country radio this week with, “Starting Over”, the title track off his latest album.

If there is one male artist in country music that is due for some much-needed mainstream success, it’s Chris Stapleton. The singer-songwriter is a force in the genre, and it’s about time he gets some radio play. After sitting at number seven on the charts just last week, Stapleton’s current radio single “Starting Over” soared to the top spot! It is now the number one song on country radio.

Despite how talented Stapleton is both as a songwriter and a vocalist, he has had some difficulty in his career getting the support of radio. Things have shifted lately, and Stapleton finds himself getting some justifiable mainstream recognition. Despite not always having radio support, The 5x GRAMMY-award winner has always been an industry favorite. “Starting Over” is the perfect song for Stapleton to shine with now for industry, fans, and commercial success alike. The title track to his latest album, released back in November, is all about keeping our loved ones close, a message we could all use!

“It don’t matter to me // Wherever we are is where I wanna be // And honey for once in your life // Let’s take our chances and roll the dice // I can be your lucky penny // You can be my four-leaf clover // Starting over”

“Starting Over” marks the singer’s third number-one single of his career, following the likes of hit songs “Tennessee Whiskey” and “Broken Halos.” We hope this new hit song starts a trajectory of even more for Stapleton.

Congrats to Stapleton and his team on the success!

Join our Weekly Round-Up e-newsletter here, for the latest in country music and more news about future Chris Stapleton releases.

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

“Starting Over” 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 fix.

And The Nominees Are…2021 ACM Award Nominees Announced

The 2021 ACM Awards will take place on Sunday, April 18th at 8PM ET on CBS.

Earlier today on CBS This Morning, Kelsea Ballerini and Brothers Osborne kicked off the nomination announcements for the 56th Annual Show revealing who’s up for the night’s biggest honors like Female Artist of the Year, Male Artist of the Year, Duo of the Year, Group of the Year, Single of the Year and the most coveted award of the night: Entertainer of the Year.

Following the morning show announcement, ET’s Rachel Smith revealed the remaining categories which included New Male Artist of the Year, New Female Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Video of the Year, and Music Event of the Year.

Normally airing from Las Vegas, this year the annual event will return to Nashville for a live broadcast for the second consecutive year following significant changes to the show due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The show will once again feature yet-to-be-announced performances happening across three different iconic music venues in Music City: Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium, and The Bluebird Cafe.

Airing on Sunday, April 18th, 2021 from 8PM ET – 11PM ET on CBS, the 56th ACM Awards will also be available to stream live and on-demand.

Check out the full list of nominations below + click the image below to visit us on Instagram and let us know your vote for this year’s Entertainer of the Year.

 

2021 ACM AWARDS NOMINATIONS:

 

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR:
Luke Bryan
Eric Church
Luke Combs
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

 

GROUP OF THE YEAR:
Lady A
Little Big Town
Old Dominion
The Cadillac Three
The Highwomen

 

MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Dierks Bentley
Eric Church
Luke Combs
Thomas Rhett
Chris Stapleton

 

FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Kelsea Ballerini
Miranda Lambert
Ashley McBryde
Maren Morris
Carly Pearce

 

DUO OF THE YEAR:
Brooks & Dunn
Brothers Osborne
Dan + Shay
Florida Georgia Line
Maddie & Tae

 

SINGLE OF THE YEAR [Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s)]:
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: Vanner Records/RCA Records Nashville

I Hope – Gabby Barrett
– Producers: Ross Copperman, Zach Kale
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

I Hope You’re Happy Now – Carly Pearce & Lee Brice
– Producers: busbee
– Record Label: Big Machine Records / Curb Records

More Hearts Than Mine – Ingrid Andress
– Producers: Ingrid Andress, Sam Ellis
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

The Bones – Maren Morris
– Producer: Greg Kurstin
– Record Label: Columbia Nashville

 

NEW FEMALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Ingrid Andress
Tenille Arts
Gabby Barrett
Mickey Guyton
Caylee Hammack

 

NEW MALE ARTIST OF THE YEAR:
Jimmie Allen
Travis Denning
HARDY
Cody Johnson
Parker McCollum

 

SONG OF THE YEAR
*Awarded to Songwriter(s)/Publisher(s)/Artist(s):
Bluebird – Miranda Lambert
– Songwriter(s): Luke Dick, Miranda Lambert, Natalie Hemby
– Publishers: Emileon Songs; Little Louder Songs; Pink Dog Publishing; Songs of Universal, INC; Sony ATV Tree Publishing; Wrucke for You Publishing

One Night Standards – Ashley McBryde
– Songwriter(s): Ashley McBryde, Nicolette Hayford, Shane McAnally
– Publishers: Canned Biscuit Songs; Smackworks Music; Smack Blue, LLC; Smackstreet Music; Tempo Investments; Warner Geo Met Ric Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp

Some People Do – Old Dominion
– Songwriter(s): Jesse Frasure, Matt Ramsey, Thomas Rhett, Shane McAnally
– Publishers: Carrot Seed Songs; EMI Blackwood Music INC; Smackville Music; Songs of ROC Nation; Telemitry Rhythm House Music; Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp; Smack Hits; Tempo Investments; Warner Gro Met Ric Music

Starting Over – Chris Stapleton
– Songwriter(s): Chris Stapleton, Mike Henderson
– Publishers: I Wrote These Songs; Straight Six Music; WC Music Corp

The Bones – Maren Morris
– Songwriter(s): Jimmy Robbins, Maren Morris, Laura Veltz
– Publishers: Big Machine Music, LLC; Extraordinary Alien Publishing; International Dog Music; Oh Denise Publishing; Round Hill Songs; Warner-Tamerlane
Publishing Corp.

 

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
*Awarded to Artist(s)/Producer(s)/Record Company–Label(s):
Born Here Live Here Die Here – Luke Bryan
– Producers: Jeff Stevens, Jody Stevens
– Record Label: Capitol Records Nashville

Mixtape Vol. 1 – Kane Brown
– Producers: Andrew Goldstein, Charlie Handsome, Dann Huff, Lindsay Rimes
– Record Label: RCA Nashville

Never Will – Ashley McBryde
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: Warner Music Nashville

Skeletons – Brothers Osborne
– Producer: Jay Joyce
– Record Label: EMI Records Nashville

Starting Over – Chris Stapleton
– Producers: Chris Stapleton, Dave Cobb
– Record Label: Mercury Nashville

 

Tune in to the show to see who will take home the awards on April 18th on CBS.
+ Follow us on Twitter while we live-tweet the show, @NYCOUNTRYSWAG.

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

Best Country Albums of 2020 – Our Favorite Picks

As this crazy, unprecedented year finally comes to a close, the one thing we could all find solace in was music in 2020.  The New York Country Swag team is highlighting the wide range of our team’s favorite songs and artists when it comes to the country music genre by featuring our favorite album picks of 2020.  At the end of the day, we are all fans first with a passion for country music and are eager to share with you all the albums we’ve had on repeat this year.

Best Country Albums of 2020 - Our Favorite Picks

Best Country Albums of 2020 – Our Favorite Picks

Find below each of our team member’s favorite albums and why in our 2020 best country album picks.

 

Stephanie Wagner, Founder

Pick: Southern Symphony – Russell Dickerson

Although the album has only been out a few weeks, I would be lying if I said I haven’t been playing it on repeat nonstop since its release. It’s one of those albums you can listen to over and over again and each time fall in love with a new song. This was one of the records I was looking forward to most this year and I’m so glad that in a year of uncertainty, this new music from Russell Dickerson has made its way out into the world. I can not wait to see songs from this project performed live!

Honorable Mention:  Southside – Sam Hunt – When I think of the early days of quarantine, I think of this album and listening to it on repeat night and day. It’s full of jams, relatable lyrics, and clever twists that made it easy to listen to over and over again.

 

Christina Bosch, Managing Editor 

Pick: The Other Side – Cam

Cam

Throughout this unprecedented and unpredictable year music has been healing and also very painful to listen to. Missing live music and the way our old life played out was something I had to come to grips with early on in the pandemic but each time a new album was released, I fell deeper and deeper in love with music and was able to really focus on my favorite part of the country genre – the lyrics.

Picking a favorite album of 2020 was nearly impossible. Three different albums were constantly playing throughout the year, the first half of the year was Nightfall by Little Big Town, then came my favorite singer-songwriter HARDY with A ROCK. Both of those albums were chosen by two of our writers so finally, released at the end of October was Cam’s sophomore project, The Other Side.

Cam’s impeccable vocal ability blew me away from the moment I first heard her sing but with this second project, she proves her power in this genre. Each song tells a different story from heartbreak, divorce, growing older, and a love that is envied by all. “Happier for You”, “Redwood Tree”, and “What Goodbye Means” are highlights but even choosing three songs to showcase was hard. I am so glad that “Diane” is getting a second life on this project as well after being released back in 2017.

For any fans of real country music that tells a story, The Other Side will instantly become a favorite for years to come.

 

Lucie Bernheim, Contributing Writer

Pick: The Dream – Hailey Whitters

2020 has felt like multiple years rolled into one. Between a global pandemic, civil unrest, and ultimately, vast unpredictability, the true silver lining has been the incredible music released over the last 12 months. This year has produced some of my favorite works of all time, two being Brett Eldredge’s risk-taking Sunday Drive, which I got to review in July, and Hailey Whitters’ magical and brilliant The Dream. Choosing between these albums was hard because they are both my favorites on different ways, but when it came down to it, I had to choose Hailey Whitters’ The Dream.

The Dream is a dream album. It’s cohesive and gorgeous, insightful and witty, heartbreaking and hopeful. “Dream, Girl” and “All The Cool Girls” have a real groove and mystique to them, making them standouts. “Janice At The Hotel Bar” is a once-in-a-lifetime kind of song. I remember where I was when I first heard the song, walking in Central Park, so moved I had to stop. I immediately played it for my parents and my sister. Lyrically, it’s incredible, as is any story-song written by Whitters and the unparalleled Lori McKenna. “Paris in the spring of 1973/She said if there is a heaven, that’s where I’ll be”.  Something about the delivery and production makes it incredibly evocative, with Whitters’ reverbed vocals and a shimmering acoustic guitar gliding you along. It’s the kind of musical moment you never forget.

It’s hard to encapsulate what music has meant to me this year. “The Days” gave me the closure I needed to end my senior year of high school; “Heartland” and “Janice At The Hotel Bar” got me through my first semester of college. Whenever I hear this record, I will always be transported back in time to 2020, a year that even if we try to forget, we never will. I can’t wait to see what Hailey Whitters does next.

 

Dylan Bestler, Contributing Writer

Pick: Southside – Sam Hunt

With all live shows being canceled this year, we needed artists to drop a lot of new music to fill the void and get through quarantine. Luckily, country artists delivered and we got a ton of great albums from Luke Bryan, Kelsea Ballerini, Dustin Lynch, Brett Eldredge, Kenny Chesney, Tim McGraw, Carly Pearce, Chris Stapleton, and many others. My favorite was Sam Hunt’s Southside.

Hunt covered a lot of themes on this record. Being that his last album was released five and a half years ago (which could’ve been another reason why I loved Southside so much), he had a lot of stories to tell. His songs are very personal to him, but are general enough where others can relate as well.

If you want to dance and have a good time, “Kinfolks” and “Hard to Forget” are great tailgate anthems. If you want to get in your feels and maybe even cry, “2016” and “That Ain’t Beautiful” are for you. “Young Once” and “Sinning With You” paint great pictures of young love if you want to reminisce on your youth. There is a song for every type of emotion on this record which makes it so versatile and relevant.

Honorable Mentions: A ROCK-HARDY, The Lemonade Stand-Tenille Townes, The K Is Silent-Hot Country Knights.

 

Kristina Callahan, Contributing Writer

Pick: Tullahoma – Dustin Lynch

Remember a time when artists put out albums, did press about the new record, and maybe even have an album release party? It seems like that was a lifetime ago. Dustin Lynch put out Tullahoma, his fourth studio album, right before the Covid-19 pandemic hit and let me tell you, I can still listen to it front to back nearly a year later. The album is named after Lynch’s hometown of Tullahoma, Tennessee, and is a central theme throughout the album from running into an ex-girlfriend at the Circle K in “Thinking ‘Bout You” or singing about momma’s fried chicken in “Dirt Road.”
I grew up on a dirt road dreaming ’bout making a name // And getting out of dodge and the same ol’ same // Graduate and settle down, man I was out of that town // Now I catch myself rewind and reminiscing // ‘Bout a small town girl and mama’s fried chicken // I can taste it right now // Let me tell you I’m proud
 
Lynch sings about his hometown in a way that so many that grew up in the small towns can relate to: driving down backroads, having everything remind you of an ex, and memories with some of your best friends. I think that’s why I love this album so much, it’s relatable and simple. When Lynch can finally perform these songs live in front of thousands of fans, I have no doubt they’ll be crowd favorites.

Jeremy Chua, Contributing Writer

Pick: Rollin’ On – Jesse Daniel

If your knowledge of country music relies solely on what’s played on country radio, you probably wouldn’t have heard of Jesse Daniel. But, if you listen to country radio and also keep up critics’ reviews, you would have heard the buzz about the California native. Though Daniel released his debut album back in 2018, it is his sophomore (and latest) effort that caught the ears of many. Rollin’ On is a throwback to the warmth of classic country, whilst also giving a nod to the Bakersfield sound made famous by icons like Buck Owens and Dwight Yoakam.

The twelve-track project boasts plenty of fiddle, steel, mandolin, and all your favorite traditional country elements. Sometimes, you hear the phrase “my life is a country song” tossed around in lighthearted humor. But Daniel’s life truly is a country song. He’s lived through poverty, drugs, substance abuse, jail time, rehab and more. This roller-coaster journey is on full display in Rollin’ On. “Champion” boasts a story of overcoming odds, “If You Ain’t Happy Now (You Never Will Be)” is a timely reminder of true contentment, while the rollicking title track celebrates the adventure of life everyone is on. Like classic country? Like authentic songwriting? Like a record with impeccable production? Then Jesse Daniel’s Rollin’ On is definitely for you. Look out for him in 2021! This album is just the beginning for the rising country star.

 

Erin Crosby, Contributing Writer

Pick: Lady Like (Deluxe) – Ingrid Andress

This “More Hearts Than Mine” singer-songwriter and piano ballad enthusiast did not only release LadyLike, her debut record, in a time when the word quarantine was still freshly coming off the tongue like a foreign island that protrudes its way onto the coast, impacting the nation in more ways than could have been anticipated. But, Ingrid Andress followed up with a deluxe edition just six months after the collection itself.

LadyLike (Deluxe) deepens and expands a presence of the crisp, lovable yet heartbreaking sentiment that exceeds an already palpable sense of her artistry in the original album. A stripped-down and honest production is only accentuated in the follow-up project with a rearranged tracklist that is said to tell the story in the order that it occurred. Each song acts as a chapter of Andress’ life whether it highlights emotional distress or an attempt at a real relationship, though intentions vary throughout depending on where you left off in the story. LadyLike (Deluxe) acts as a true representation of modern ideologies of romance while not closing the curtain on inner frustrations and insecurities along the way.

 

Caleigh DeCaprio, Contributing Writer

Pick: kelsea– Kelsea Ballerini

There were a few albums that I found myself playing on repeat this year, including The Speed of Now Part 1, What you see Ain’t Always What You Get, and Diplo Presents Thomas Wesley, Chapter 1: Snake Oil. But when it came to what album got me ~through~ this year, it was kelsea.

Too many of these songs felt like Kelsea wrote them just for me. I’ve never heard a song that was so lyrically perfect for me before I listened to “club”. Seriously if you know me, this song is my anthem. I had already loved “homecoming queen?” and “la” because of how vulnerable and relatable they were and when I heard the full album, I felt the very same way about “overshare”, “half of my hometown”, and “a country song”. I related so strongly to these songs to the point that I felt I could have written them myself. (not that I could have done that, but you know what I mean).

The artistry in the songwriting and production of this entire album is a pure example of a true and rare talent. No matter what song you come across on this record, it will be some of the most vulnerable and honest music you have heard. Ballerini shares her highs and lows and everything in between. It’s not that common for an artist to be so open and forward about their struggles with anxiety and introversion, especially this early on in their career, but Ballerini showed that side of her and then some with this album.

My heart hurt for her when this album came out the week the world shut down. I wanted her to get to play these songs live and receive all the glory she deserved for this beautiful work of art. However, the way that she was able to spin that negative into the reimagining of the very same songs on ballerini in order to give herself the chance to re-fall in love with these songs was extraordinary and a lovely example of music that would not exist if it weren’t for this year’s events. The re-imagined ballerini album just made fans understand even more how much love she had for this collection of songs.

The pair of albums was meant to show that there are two sides to every story and every person. Understanding that we all have more to us than what is seen on the surface is an important and beautiful lesson that we can take away from these albums and this year. When the day finally comes for Kelsea to play these songs on tour, I will be the first one in line to see it.

Julia Grubbs, Contributing Writer 

Pick: Starting Over – Chris Stapleton

2020 has been a certain kind of year, so I was looking for something that told a complete story. As soon as I heard Starting Over, I knew it captured everything I was feeling about how the year had gone: some of the anger, some of the resentment, some of the just getting up every day for a brand new day that looked very similar to the one before. While Stapleton always manages to speak truth to listeners in ways no one else can, this year we needed comfort and assurance unlike any other that we will make it through this. “Cold” is one of my favorites, using his iconic tone and lyricism to hit raw emotion. “Starting Over”, just like the title of the album, reminds us that through this journey, we can still learn and grow, find moments of joy, and serves as a reminder that we must accept what has happened, and use that as a pivotal moment for the path forward.

 

Nicole Piering, Contributing Writer

Pick: Nightfall – Little Big Town

My favorite and most listened to album of 2020 was easily Little Big Town’s Nightfall, which came out in simpler pre-pandemic times back in January. In fact, their phenomenal concert at the Apollo was my last taste of live music this year, so at least I went out on a high note.

Although not as single-heavy as some of their other releases, Nightfall is truly a cohesive masterclass in harmony. With standout songs such as “Sugar Coat,” “Questions,” and “The Daughters,” this album is one I’ll be listening to through 2021 and beyond.
Pick: My Gift – Carrie Underwood
Whether or not you’re a religious person, this album is absolutely stunning. We needed something positive to come out of 2020 and the first ever holiday project from the queen of country definitely delivered. From gorgeous covers of Christmas classics like “O Holy Night”, “Mary Did You Know” and “Joyful Joyful” to new original songs like “Let There Be Peace” and “Sweet Baby Jesus” the album truly has something for everyone. Underwood’s voice shines on the power ballads and the softer hymns alike, and you can hear her emotion and faith come through every song.
My personal favorites off the album happen to be the two collaborations: “Hallelujah” with John Legend and “Little Drummer Boy” featuring Underwood’s son, Isaiah. Curling up with hot chocolate and a blanket and listening to My Gift has been my weekend routine since it came out in September, and I’m definitely going to be listening to these songs well after the holiday season.

What a year wild ride 2020 has been. While it was so strange not going to any concerts, new music from many great country artists certainly got me through. While this was a tough decision to make, my favorite album of 2020 had to be Granger Smith’s Country Things (Both Volumes). It just gives you such perspective to live in the moment and enjoy the little things. This was such an important message for 2020 as while we may not have gotten to enjoy the big events, we got to enjoy those moments with our loved ones we may not have gotten to if we had a year of our normal, busy schedules.

 

Erica Zisman, Contributing Writer

Pick: A ROCK – HARDY

If there is one thing that got me through this year, it was music. As 2020 comes to a close, I could not be more grateful for country music! With that being said, my favorite record of 2020 has to be HARDY’s album, A ROCK.

I am completely in love with everything HARDY does as a singer, a songwriter, and a performer. He continues to exceed my expectations and delivers music that I relate to, enjoy, and want to share with my friends and family. HARDY’s ability to craft lyrics is a skill I’ll never get enough of. Moreover, his record is a cohesive masterpiece that tells a full story from start to finish.

Songs like the title track, “A ROCK,” “GIVE HEAVEN SOME HELL,” and “SO CLOSE” are all so different, yet distinctly HARDY.  Time after time, the singer-songwriter and superstar in the making proves that he has an IQ high above the rest when it comes to creating a captivating song and full-length project.

I truly cannot wait to see what he does next. Also, it is an added bonus that HARDY gave us all a live concert via streaming to celebrate this record. Even through the screen, I could feel how amazing the record truly is and will be when performed in front of a live audience; hopefully next year! Congrats to HARDY and his team for delivering a badass and unique record to an ever-growing fanbase!

Honorable Mention: Jordan Davis Self-titled EP

 

How do our favorite picks match up to yours? Let us know what music you’ve had on repeat in 2020. Already anticipating new music in 2021? Check out our list of albums to expect in the new year here.

 

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SHOP THE HERO COLLECTION

The Hero Collection by NYCountry Swag is inspired by the men and women of the Fire, Police and Military Departments across the country. A portion of sales from each purchase is donated to different foundations that support our heroes. We are dedicated to honoring their service and remembering their sacrifice.

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Thank You for supporting Country Music in NYC & Beyond!

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Chris Stapleton: ‘Starting Over’ – Album Review

Chris Stapleton’s new album, Starting Over is available now, November 12th, on all streaming platforms. With eleven songs written by Stapleton and his longtime friends, take a look below as we give our first impression of the album.

Chris Stapleton manages to isolate the exact emotions felt by his listeners while providing comfort in being fully seen by someone and solace that others feel similar. Starting Over captures the timeliness of our current state and simultaneously creates a timeless relic of the truth of our existence. Written beginning in February right before the shutdown, these words surpass the current processing of our situations and in hindsight will epitomize our sentiments.

“Starting Over” kicks off the album with a lighthearted take on beginning anew, much like what many of us had to do recently in all aspects of our life. Whether meant as motivation or just the soundtrack to a new dawn, it initiated the fresh start tone of the album. Stapleton recorded this album back in Nashville, surrounded by old friends and new collaborators, providing the optimal place for a reflection of a journey. The album features his wife, Morgane Stapleton, on background vocals and tambourine, creating an elevated emotional dynamic for the tracks.

“Cold”, one of Stapleton’s early releases, is one of the most iconic songs of the year, in lyrics, tone, and vocalization. Billboard called in “earth-shattering…this is the finest rip-your-heart-out song you’ll hear all day…or any day.” The next few tracks tell happy stories, with a cover of John Fogerty’s “Joy of My Life”, and a tale of picking up a puppy in “Maggie’s Song.” “Whiskey Sunrise” seems to combine the straight tone of some of his iconic songs with the rock feel of some of his newer creations resulting in a masterpiece.

“Old Friends” oscillates between a quiet monologue and a legato comforting chorus, praising the stability and reliability of the people who have always been there for you. “Watch You Burn” takes a sharp contrast, turning anger to those who have hurt others, ensuring they’ll get their turn, and that the Devil will watch them burn.

The heart of country music, Nashville, is the item of homage paid in the closing track, “Nashville, TN.” Though it tells the story of a Stapleton’s relationship to the city, it reflects the growth that anyone has with a place or a time in their life. Whatever it taught you was yours to learn and take with you when you leave, and even though a part of you will still be there, it won’t take what’s left as you say goodbye to those memories and start a new chapter.

Starting Over runs the gamut, commencing with the excitement and possibility of starting over, through all the rough patches that come, and finalizing with the acceptance of the journey. Whether meant as the ultimate metaphor for the acceptance of what is in this and every season in our lives or not, Stapleton continues to exceptionally seize the moment and the ceaseless joys and perils of what it means to live a life.

Chris Stapleton’s 'Starting Over' is available now, November 12th

Chris Stapleton, ‘Starting Over’

Stapleton’s “All-American Road Show” tour is planned to resume next year, with very special guests, and a special concert in his home state of Kentucky, benefiting the Blue Grass Community Foundation, focusing on music and arts education.

NYCS Picks

1. “Starting Over”
2. “Cold”
3. “Whiskey Sunrise”
4. “Old Friends”
5. “Nashville, TN”

Chris Stapleton’s 'Starting Over' is available now, November 12th

Chris Stapleton’s ‘Starting Over’ is available now, November 12th

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

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

Starting Over 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 fix.

 

 

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SHOP THE HERO COLLECTION

The Hero Collection by NYCountry Swag is inspired by the men and women of the Fire, Police and Military Departments across the country. A portion of sales from each purchase is donated to different foundations that support our heroes. We are dedicated to honoring their service and remembering their sacrifice.

—————————-

Thank You for supporting Country Music in NYC & Beyond!

Subscribe to our Weekly Round-Up here 
for ticket giveaways, meet & greet contests, upcoming events,
and all things country music in the New York metro area and beyond!

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Chris Stapleton Paints Arkansas As Party Destination With New Release “Arkansas”

Chris Stapleton’s new song, “Arkansas” is available now, October 28th, on all streaming platforms. Inspired by a recent drive across the state, take a look below as we dive deeper into the track.

Chris Stapleton Arkansas

Chris Stapleton is most definitely an icon of modern country music, and his releases continue to live up to the throne he’s on. With a strong electric guitar intro, and the first line coming completely unexpectedly, Stapleton makes sure that you hear this song and listen to him. His unique voice and depth of graininess in tone never fail to relay the bootstrapped version of country so many of his fans know all too well.

Inspired by a recent trip Stapleton and his wife took across the state, he paints a picture of everyone there having a ball and that the fun is so outlandish, it might just be against the law. The mention of the Ozark mountains colors an image that anyone could long for, and with the added mention of a good time, sounds sure to make an impression.

“Well, we burned through the one light towns like a scalded dog / When we lit out of Fayetteville, they were callin’ the hogs / We made a pit stop in Little Rock for some barbecue / And when we hit West Memphis there were blue lights in our rearview”

Maybe Arkansas really is the place to visit, driving the open roads, windows down, with “Arkansas” itself playing. This song will be included on his upcoming album Starting Over, out Nov. 13.

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

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

“Arkansas” 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 fix.

—————

SHOP THE HERO COLLECTION

The Hero Collection by NYCountry Swag is inspired by the men and women of the Fire, Police and Military Departments across the country. Specially selected foundations that support our heroes will receive donations from each purchase. Honoring their service and remembering their sacrifice is what we are dedicated to.

—————————-

Thank You for supporting Country Music in NYC & Beyond!

Subscribe to our Weekly Round-Up here 
for ticket giveaways, meet & greet contests, upcoming events,
and all things country music in the New York metro area and beyond!

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Chris Stapleton’s New Song, “Cold” Showcases His Vulnerable Side

Chris Stapleton’s new song, “Cold” is available now, September 25th, on all streaming platforms. Written by Stapleton, Dave Cobb, Derek Mixon, and J.T. Cure, take a look below as we dig a little deeper into the track.

Chris Stapleton has an iconic unique voice and sound, and his latest release, “Cold” surely doesn’t disappoint with his liquid lyrics that convey true storytelling. What starts to sound like a heartfelt piano ballad or a piano concerto at the beginning quickly transitions into a drum kick and a conjuring of strong emotion.  His voice wrings with hurt, asking “Why you got to be so cold? Why you got to go and cut me like a knife / And put our love on ice.” Stapleton is never one to back down from emotion, and this is right on par.

Chris Stapleton New Song Cold

Chris Stapleton’s New Song “Cold” is available now

His grit and rawness parallel the vulnerability of his words so truly encompass, and create relatable pictures of the struggles of life. The leisurely pace of the guitar and steady drum contrast vividly with the strings that liken it to the backdrop of a tense movie scene. Only then, does the electric guitar create yet another mood, jazzing up the track and almost dates it to a prior time when that guitar solo was ever so popular.

Chris Stapleton’s new song, “Cold” is a must-listen for that late-night beer, after just a little too much hurt from a relationship. It all comes from an authentic place and lets us know that we’re not alone.

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

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

“Cold” 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 fix.

 

—————

SHOP THE HERO COLLECTION

The Hero Collection by NYCountry Swag is inspired by the men and women of the Fire, Police and Military Departments across the country. A portion of sales from each purchase is donated to different foundations that support our heroes. We are dedicated to honoring their service and remembering their sacrifice.

—————————-

Thank You for supporting Country Music in NYC & Beyond!

Subscribe to our Weekly Round-Up here 
for ticket giveaways, meet & greet contests, upcoming events,
and all things country music in the New York metro area and beyond!

+ Follow our country music adventures on InstagramTwitter & Facebook: