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Lady Antebellum Release “Champagne Night” from NBC’s Songland

Champagne Night

At a time when most TV shows are on hiatus, the return on NBC’s hit show, Songland was a welcome change, especially for music lovers. The reality series, which had a successful season one last year, gives songwriters the chance to pitch songs directly to a guest artist. After a workshop period in which each songwriter teams up with one of the show’s three legendary producers, Ryan Tedder, Shane McAnally, and Ester Dean, the guest artist chooses which song they want to record and release. 

Songland, which features artists from all genres, kicked off season two with country trio Lady Antebellum. The Grammy-winning group was presented with four songs and in the end, chose an upbeat track called, “Champagne Night”. The song was written by Madeline Merlo with the help of mentor and producer McAnally and Lady A group members, Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley, and Dave Haywood. 

Champange Night

SONGLAND — “Lady Antebellum” — Pictured: (l-r) Ryan Tedder, Lady Antebellum, Shane McAnally, Ester Dean — (Photo by Trae Patton/NBC)

Lady Antebellum released the song and accompanying music video after the show’s broadcast. Given the fast tempo, summer feel and funky vibes, “Champagne Night” is sure to be a crowd favorite next time the trio hits the road.

“Raise them plastic cups to a life of luxury c’est la vie on a Friday / We get dressed up in a blue jean tux and we go where we don’t hear the highway / Don’t need doubles and bubbles to get in all kinds of trouble out in the country / Don’t need a crystal chandelier to have a real good time / We’re drinking beer on a champagne night”

Previous country stars featured on Songland include Kelsea Ballerini and Old Dominion. Florida Georgia Line and Martina McBride are set to appear later in season two.

To keep up with Lady Antebellum, follow them on  TwitterInstagram, and Facebook.

“Champagne Night” 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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Ashley McBryde Drops New Single “One Night Standards”

Ashley McBryde One Night Standards

Ashley McBryde has returned with yet another heartfelt, delicate aria; the first taste of a new project after the release of her highly acclaimed debut, Girl Going Nowhere. The Arkansas-native publicized the news on the same day she was announced as a nominee for “New Artist of the Year” at this year’s CMA Awards. Fellow musician, “Best Shot” singer-songwriter Jimmie Allen announced her nomination while McBryde blissfully confessed the details of her newest single, “One Night Standards,” the first single of her forthcoming sophomore album pending a release date in 2020.

The “Girl Going Nowhere” singer-songwriter has never been shy when discussing authentic content in her music. “One Night Standards,” written by McBryde, Shane McAnally, and Nicolette Hayford, divulges in the ground rules set for a boisterous, guilt-free night spent in a nondescript hotel room. The less known about one another, the better. McBryde dabbled around with the idea with Hayford in a writer’s room in East Nashville, “It ain’t something, I wanna spend a lot of time in, I ain’t gonna stay for the weekend..” before reintroducing the idea to McAnally a mere two years later when the trio released they had something special. “We had to walk away from it to give it a second to breathe,” she now reflects in a press release. “When we got back in a room, this time Shane [McAnally] was with us and I joked, ‘You know, hotel rooms…they only have one night stand for a reason. They’re one night stand-ers.’ Shane and Nic’s eyes lit up, ‘Did you just say one night standards?’”

The “A Little Dive Bar in Dahlonega” artist communicates the priority of not wanting nor expecting more than a one night fling singing: “It’s just a room key, you ain’t gotta lie to me / Can’t you just use me, like I’m using you / How it goes is, the bar closes / There’s no king bed covered in roses / Just a room, without a view / I don’t want a number you ain’t gonna answer / Let’s just stick to the one night standards”

McBryde debuted “One Night Standards” at her CMA Fan Club Party and the relevance of this heavily influenced bluesy, country rock anthem is apposite to all. She will continue to premiere her new single on her upcoming tour dates, as well as her appearances in the UK.

To keep up with Ashley McBryde follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

“One Night Standards” is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen below and check out more 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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Old Dominion Guest Star on Shane McAnally’s Show ‘Songland’

Songland Old Dominion

Mike Spotz (@illkoncept) for NYCountry Swag

The 2019 ACM Vocal Group of the Year, Old Dominion was featured on NBC’s Songland last night. The five-member band, consisting of Trevor Rosen, Whit Sellers, Geoff Sprung, Brad Tursi, and front-man, Matthew Ramsey chose to record “Young”, written by Katelyn Tarver. The song, however, will not be featured on their upcoming album but in a never before seen Jeep commercial.

The commercial expresses how Jeep makes you feel young again. It shows scenes of an older couple reliving a moment from their younger days. Tarver stars as the young version of the wife as the video cuts back forth between the couple at a young age and them now, driving around in their electric blue-colored Jeep. We believe Old Dominion’s new song fits the commercial perfectly. Watch it for yourself here:

“Baby, I just wanna be young / Young forever with you”

In “Young”, Ramsey sings of how he wants to go back to his younger days when he and his significant other were the only two people in the world that mattered. When Tarver went into the studio with Shane McAnally to work on the song, they had to make it fit Old Dominion’s style and Jeep’s brand. They toughened the song up by adding a “pulsing bass” and changing the verses to help it lose its original femininity. When she performed “Young” the second time in front of the Chief Marketing Director at Jeep, Oliver Francois, she sang it with a male to better display its toughness.

“When I drive (with the) top-off my wrangler, I morph into this 26-year-old self of mine”, Francois said after hearing Tarver’s song. “That’s exactly what Jeep is about.”  Tarver, from Glennville, Georgia is an artist, herself. Just yesterday she released a new song titled “Sinking In”. For Old Dominion, “Young” is the first song the group has ever recorded that they didn’t write.

When you go to a concert or hear a song on the radio, the singer is always the center of attention. Songland gives four songwriters the opportunity to enjoy the spotlight for a change, allowing them to pitch their song to already established artists, like Old Dominion. It demonstrates the long, complicated process that is involved with songwriting.

Alongside Old Dominion in the song-editing process were three Grammy-winning/nominated songwriters in Ester Dean, Ryan Tedder, and McAnally, who appear on each episode of the show. Dean has written a number of smash hits including “Super Bass” by Nikki Minaj, “Firework” by Katy Perry and many by Rhianna including “Rude Boy”.

Tedder has a long resume when it comes to songwriting and producing. He has contributed to three Grammy-winning albums including Taylor Swift’s 1989 and Adele’s 21 and 25. Tedder also has a background it country music, writing songs for Rascal Flatts, Carrie Underwood and most recently, Thomas Rhett, contributing to two tracks on his latest album Center Point Road, “That Old Truck” and “Beer Can’t Fix”. Tedder has also had three singles reach the top ten on the Billboard Hot 100 as the lead singer of his pop-rock group, One Republic, “Apologize”, “Good Life” and “Counting Stars”.

Shane McAnally is one of the most established writers in country music. He has written number-one hits for multiple artists including Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Dierks Bentley, Sam Hunt, Thomas Rhett, and many others. McAnally has racked up a number of awards with singer-songwriter Kacey Musgraves, including the 2019 Grammy Awards for Best Country Song (“Space Cowboy”) and Album of the Year (Golden Hour).

Old Dominion’s new self-titled album comes out on October 25th. The Nashville-based group has released five songs from the album thus far, including the lead single, “Make It Sweet”.

To keep up with Old Dominion, follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

“Young” is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a look below and check out more recently released music 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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Kelsea Ballerini Releases Track from Songland “Better Luck Next Time”

 

Better Luck Next Time

The craft of songwriting is finally getting the platform and recognition it deserves with songwriter extraordinaire, Shane McAnally’s new show Songland. The show gives up and coming songwriters the chance to compete to have one of their tracks released by an established singer in the industry. In one of the latest episodes of the series, country music’s princess, Kelsea Ballerini fell in love with songwriter, Darius Coleman’s song “Better Luck Next Time,” and ultimately chose to record his song. Earlier last week, she recorded and released the new crossover jam.

Ballerini transforms the song effortlessly, adding her confident attitude and skillful weaving of genres to the song. According to Coleman, the track was written for a friend, who was cheated on. Although slower-paced and a bit more melancholy, with Pop, R&B, and EDM influences, the tracks’ message is reminiscent of the songstress’ empowering anthem, “Miss Me More” which just hit the top spot on the country charts.

The song is filled with cleverly woven together lyrics, such as “hit like a shot of tequila without the lime” and “we tried it, but when two hearts, don’t light up, you can’t fight it.” Ballerini brings the words to life with her soothing, but distinct vocals; however, its the rhythmic chorus that will be stuck in your head after just one listen, “I got myself together / got a new attitude / Hope that I see you never / I”m so over you / Got myself together, you’re out of my mind / Now all that I can say is / Better luck next time / Better luck next time.”

Catch the next episode of Songland on Tuesday, June 18th featuring the Jonas Brothers. As for Ballerini, the singer wrapped up her headlining tour with Brett Young and Brandon Ratcliff and her song “Miss Me More” went number one on country radio. Additionally, she has plans to play at various festivals and fairs this summer. Make sure to check out kelseaballerini.com for more information.

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

“Better Luck Next Time” is now available everywhere you buy or stream music. Take a listen above 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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Country Songwriters That You Need To Know

One of the best things about country music is how many of our favorite artists are also songwriters. Even if they don’t record their own hits (a great example is Little Big Town smash, “Better Man” which was actually penned by Taylor Swift) it’s normal to see songwriter credit given to the same names we hear on the radio, see on tour, and follow on streaming platforms.

But there’s actually a *not so secret* network of songwriting royalty that fly under the radar, despite their ability to churn out hit after hit for the biggest performers of our generation. Here are some songwriters that you need to know:

 

Shane McAnally – Perhaps one of the most well known Nashville writers (and certainly most active on social media thanks to his adorable kids) is country king, Shane McAnally. With an artist roster including Lee Ann Womack, Kenny Chesney, Jake Owen, Dierks Bentley, Keith Urban, Brothers Osborne, Miranda Lambert, Thomas Rhett, Sam Hunt, Midland, and Kacey Musgraves, there isn’t a single top country chart he isn’t all over.

Caitlyn Smith – This vocal powerhouse has recently started to release her own music, but you’re much more likely to know her for a slew of number one songs including, “Let it Hurt” recorded by Rascal Flatts, the Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton duet, “You Can’t Make Old Friends”, and even pop hit, “Like I’m Gonna Lose You” co-written by Meghan Trainor and performed featuring John Legend.

Lori McKenna – Solely responsible for writing Tim McGraw’s “Humble and Kind”, Grammy award winner, Lori McKenna is one of my most sought after songwriters who doesn’t even live in Nashville. McKenna resides with her family in Massachusets but travels to Nashville often to write some of the biggest songs in the genre. Along with Hillary Lindsey and Liz Rose, she wrote Little Big Town’s “Girl Crush”. She has also just released her 11th studio album, The Tree.

Ashley Gorley –  With more than 100 country cuts to date (yup, you read that right) there may be no one as established in the songwriting world than Ashley Gorley. When you’ve written for the greats (George Strait, Darius Rucker, Bon Jovi, and Tim McGraw to name a few) and newer talent (Cole Swindell, Jon Pardi, and Chase Bryant) it’s hard to imagine there is anyone in town that won’t take a meeting.

Heather Morgan – Co-founder of all-female seasonal writers’ round “Girls of Nashville” (with previously mentioned Caitlyn Smith) is this Texas gal. You can find Morgan on not one, not two, but seven Brett Eldredge hits, and who knows how many more in the works.

Kelley Lovelace – This Tennessee native known mostly for writing almost every Brad Paisley single, can also be found on track listings for the likes of Joe Nichols, Jason Aldean, Terri Clark, and Carrie Underwood.

Natalie Hemby – Great songwriters aren’t reserved for country and Natalie Hemby is a perfect example of lending talents to other genres. Famous for Miranda Lambert songs including, “Automatic” and, “White Liar”, her claim to fame this past year was writing “Always Remember Us This Way” alongside the one and only Lady Gaga for the Golden Globe-nominated film, “A Star is Born”.

Luke Laird – Few songwriters can snag the coveted “Triple Play Award” given by the Country Music Association to those with three or more number one hits in one year, but Luke Laird has done it SIX times! With over 20 #1 Billboard singles, including multiple hits for Eric Church, Carrie Underwood, and Luke Bryan, he has also written and produced songs for Tim McGraw, Rascal Flatts, Toby Keith, Darius Rucker, and many more.

Nicolle Galyon – Dan and Shay’s smash, “Tequila” was easily the biggest song of 2018, and it was actually written by an incredibly talented woman. With credits like Kenny Chesney’s, “All the Pretty Girls”, Lee Brice’s  “Boy”, and Raelynn’s “Lonely Call”, and pop hits including Camilla Cabello’s, “Consequences”, it’s only a matter of time before she becomes the household name.

Josh Kear – Not to be confused with Josh Kerr (who you probably also love for co-writing some Kelsea Ballerini favs…) this veteran is no stranger to the top of the charts. From Carrie Underwood and Blake Shelton to Lady Antebellum and Dierks Bentley, there are few people as successful in the country writing circuit.

Hillary Lindsey – An absolute powerhouse for female stars for the last two decades, this Grammy winner has written for Faith Hill, Martina McBride, Sara Evans, Carrie Underwood, Kellie Pickler, and Taylor Swift, just to name a few. Who run the world? (Country) Girls.

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NYCS Woman of the Month: Olivia Hanceri

Our first Woman of the Month for 2019 is Olivia Hanceri, Director of Public Relations for SMACK, a unique company based out of Nashville.  More on SMACK later but first, in our recent interview, Hanceri told us about her non-conventional journey to Music City and the musical influences in her life.

Growing up in Mobile, Alabama, she was not raised on country music or whatever music was popular at the time, rather she grew up listening to classical music.  “I could tell you any classical composer but as far as things that were on the radio, I don’t remember that being influential in my life,” she explains. Her father played the cello, her mother owned a dance studio and she played piano competitively, that being her entry point into music.  She immersed herself in the classical world until she reached college. She double majored at the University of Alabama in political science and public relations and originally thought she would go into lobbying in DC.

“In a series of random events I got connected with Ebie McFarland and interned for her and fell in love with her company,” Hanceri explains.  “I landed a job right out of college with her and worked with her for four years.” She worked as a day to day publicist in Nashville, eventually learning to love the country music scene, specifically the songwriters who were behind the curtain. During her four years with Essential Broadcast Media (EBMediaPR) she assisted on some of the larger accounts but recalls two major moments that were very special to her. One working with Old Dominion from the very early days, eventually seeing them get signed to Sony and release two albums and then more recently, watching Caitlyn Smith’s career blossom in a format that isn’t country.

She also worked closely with Walker Hayes, Shane McAnally, and other songwriters, “I kept being drawn to songwriters as clients, the common thread was SMACKSongs and that’s what is interesting, they were all a part of SMACK so at Ebie’s I learned first hand about publishing and songwriting, it was a world within a world and that to me is where the real magic happens. I was fortunate enough to transition from EBMediaPR to SMACK,” she tells us.

Now she works with a roster of fourteen songwriters and within that roster, four of them are artists as well as songwriters, Kylie Morgan, Walker Hayes, one of our Swag Spotlight’s Renee Blair and one of our 2019 Artists to Watch, Teddy Robb. Along with handling media relations for the individual songwriters, she is also responsible for PR for the company itself, strategizing for awards and recognition.  “We are unique because we have a publishing arm, a management arm, an artist development arm and a production arm,” she explains. The work with their roster in different capacities, allowing Hanceri’s day to day to evolve and change. “It’s been fun to lean into marketing or lean into merchandise, if it has to do with your brand, I am fortunate enough to touch it,” she tells us. “We all get to shift and figure out what is needed so my days never look the same.”

SMACK not only has some of the biggest writers in the industry, Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne but they also have a band of new writers, each raising the bar to write and create incredible songs. She explains two things she is most excited about working on currently are Shane McAnally’s new show Songland which was just greenlit for season one on NBC as well as helping to launch artist Kylie Morgan‘s career.

As a passion project, Hanceri also manages ‘Girls of Nashville’, a seasonal showcase that highlights female songwriters who are looking to make a positive change in the community. “There is something really fulfilling about nights like that, where you get to walk away with such a full heart,” she says of the event.

As we close out our conversation, Hanceri gives advice to any young women just starting out, looking to find their dream job. “Lean in to working as hard as you can, as soon as you get out of college or in your early twenties, that first season of life as a young adult should really be about being ambitious and excited and hungry,” she offers. She also says that getting to Nashville and having boots on the ground to show what you can do in person is half the battle of landing a job in the music industry. Looking ahead, Hanceri is excited to see the evolution of SMACK who received SESAC Writer of the Year,  SESAC Song of the Year, Publisher of the Year, ASCAP Song of the Year, and several BMI Radio Airplay Awards in 2018. Keep up with Olivia on Instagram.

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SMACKSongs Stuns Nashville With The Ultimate Writers Round

SMACKSongs Writers Round

Photo via SmackSongs Instagram//Taken by Rachel Deeb

 

What is better than a concert on a Monday night? Nothing. Although this concert was unlike any other for multiple reasons. One, it was at the Listening Room Cafe which is known for its intimate setting and finding new upcoming singers and songwriters. SMACKSongs took over the night for a round called SMACK and Friend’s making it the ultimate writers round. SMACKSongs is a Nashville-based music publishing company founded in 2012. They are proudly home to some of the industry’s top songwriters, producers, and artists, including Shane McAnally himself, as founder and CEO. The show featured McAnally, Josh Osborne, Teddy Robb, Aaron Eshuis, Matt McGinn, Ryan Beaver, Josh Jenkins, Kylie Morgan, Renee Blair and many more!

McAnally and Osborne got the night started by singing some of their hit songs including “Drinking Problem” and “John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16”. Bringing out their first set of writers, including Renee Blair and Teddy Robb, each singer performed a new single or one that has previously been cut. Teddy Robb previewed a new song called “Tell Me How” that has not yet been released but never the less got the crowd on their feet applauding. Renee Blair also took the same approach singing a new song called “Me Tonight”.

In between each set of writers, McAnally and Osborne shared stories of their journey without forgetting to add some jokes along the way. Talking about how they once played a song for Kenny Chesney on his plane that was already taken but he loved it so much they had to steal it back from no other than Little Big Town. “American Kids” then became Chesney’s #1 single off his album The Big Revival. Other artists that played included Brandon Radcliff singing his song “Rules of Breaking Up” and Josh Jenkins sang “21” which was cut by Jimmie Allen on his latest album Mercury Lane and “Thinking About You”.

Each time McAnally introduced a singer you could tell in his voice how proud of each one of them he was. He even said himself that the only people he could be more proud of are his kids, showing genuine gratitude and emotion as the night progressed. Throughout the night he talked about how important it was to “find your tribe” and the people that are willing to hustle with you in order to chase your dreams. Shane McAnally and Josh Osborne have created not only a powerhouse of songwriters, producers, and artists but a community that displays the true meaning of family within the country music business.  Head to our Instagram and check out exclusive videos from the night.

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NYCS Swag Spotlight Featuring Renee Blair

Growing up in St. Louis, Missouri, Renee Blair wasn’t always a country fan, she tells New York Country Swag in our most recent interview. Yes, the Dixie Chicks, Shania Twain, and Tanya Tucker, of course, played a big part in her childhood, but ultimately The Spice Girls and even the rise of Nelly really cultivated her love for performing.  After taking voice lessons and dance classes her entire childhood, Blair knew that there was no plan B for her career, she was going to be an artist. “I had to be perfecting my voice and my performance and I was really addicted to music. I’ve never even thought about the fact that my life was meant to do something else. As much as I loved the popstars and that music, I definitely think I picked the right genre, the way that country music tells stories, I think I finally have a story to tell,” she explains.

Her story includes moving to Nashville when she was right out of high school, two tragic accidents within the same year, and a regrowth period that now involves mega producer and songwriter Shane McAnally.  After moving to town, she, like so many people, thought that with her abilities, she would have an overnight success story, but looking back now realizes that her trials and tribulations with life and pursuing the career doesn’t always go as planned.  A car accident and then a boating accident which left her arm paralyzed for 6 months, changed her perspective and left her wondering where her place was in the music industry. “I kind of went through a few years of questioning life and myself and my purpose, moving to Nashville for this dream and now I was just known as the accident girl and music was what really kept me going and as corny as it sounds, it made me want to wake up in the morning and try to get better,” she tells us.

The little girl from St. Louis who rocked a piece of tape on her cheek in homage to Nelly while in Catholic school laughs as she explains how Nelly’s rise to stardom influences her music today. “I think it is a huge testament to where music is right now, it’s becoming very cross-genre. I think it’s awesome,” she says of his recent collaboration with Florida Georgia Line.  “The fans are the best judgment, they just like good music and they don’t care what you call it and I think it is a great way to just bring everyone together.”

Her debut single, released earlier this year, “Gotta Quit Drinkin'”  is as real life as it gets and definitely has that R&B vibe while telling a story.  Blair explains that mistakes she has made over the past couple of years with ex-boyfriends only happen after she’s had that second or third drink. “All day long I never text this dude, but as soon as I have my second drink my thumbs go wild and I’m all ‘Where are you’ and ‘I miss you’,” she laughs. After it became a running joke with her friends, she took the experience that is completely relatable into the writing room one day and “Gotta Quit Drinkin” was written.  “We definitely told the truth and in songwriting it is all you can ask for, every word of that I did and I lived it, there are other songs that I’ve written that might have better radio success but this is a great representation of where I’ve been at, its authentic to my story,” Blair says.

Blair is working on her debut EP which is being produced by Shane McAnally and released by SMACK Songs. McAnally who has worked closely with country megastars such as Sam Hunt, Old Dominion, Kacey Musgraves and has written hits for tons of other artists is helping to shape the music Blair is releasing. One interesting anecdote that she explains is how he caters his talents to each artist individually, helping to keep each sound unique.  “He helps to bring a light to the artist and pull out the best parts of them, he has really helped me tap into myself and asked me questions that I haven’t even thought about,” she says of her working relationship with the producer.  “He is a great person, with all of the success that someone has had, he is still kind to people and works really hard, he is so kind and I think the world of him.”

She already has an album’s worth of songs that she has written and is working to record new music and hopefully release a few tracks later this fall.  She is opening for Billy Currington in October on three of his Texas dates.  “I am so excited to do those dates, I’ve been in the writing mode for 2-3 years so I am so excited to get the music out to the fans and start playing it all,” Blair says of finally getting on the road.

Follow her journey on her social media platforms including Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

 

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Jo Smith Entertains with Winnie’s Jazz Bar Pop-Up

Georgia native, Jo Smith joined us at Winnie’s Jazz Bar inside Refinery Hotel last week for a New York Country Swag Pop-Up Set.  During her acoustic set, Smith performed tracks off her debut EP, Introducing Jo Smith and shared stories about how growing up in a small town helped to inspire her sound.  “I lived 30 minutes away from the nearest McDonalds so there was a lot of creativity to be had because there was nothing else to do,” she laughs explaining where she grew up.  The EP, produced by Shane McAnally and Jesse Frasure not only introduces the artist to the world but a new genre they coined, “Jo-Town”.  “I was just so grateful to have an idea of a sound that I feel like hadn’t really been done before and to find producers that didn’t say no, they just figured out a way to make it happen,” she tells us.

Taking a seat on the piano bench, New York City patrons were treated to a three-song, acoustic set featuring “Old School Groove”, “Dance Dirty” and a brand new song called “Marry You Tomorrow”.  The singer blends mo-town and country to create a unique sound that is reminiscent of all of her influences growing up including Bruce Springsteen, Patsy Cline and Aretha Franklin.

Be sure to follow Jo Smith on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

 

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Midland, On The Rocks

NYCS First Impression: Midland’s Debut LP On the Rocks

Midland On the Rocks

Midland, three men with killer mustaches’ and even better wardrobes are making old sound new.  Mark Wystrach, Cameron Duddy and Jess Carson live and breathe 70’s and 80’s country music. Hailing from California, Arizona, and Oregon the trio now call Texas home and are releasing their debut album, On the Rocks on Big Machine Records.

With the infamous statement “that’s not country music” lingering around today because of the fluidity of the genre, there is no doubt Midland is country music at its finest.  Featuring some of country music’s best songwriters including, Shane McAnally, Rhett Akins, and Josh Osborne, the 13 track LP is filled with clever stories, complex harmonies and all the banjo one could want from a country record.

Throughout the album, Midland’s influences are clear, Gary Stewart, Keith Whitley, Merle Haggard, George Jones and of course George Strait especially on songs like “Burn Out” and their debut single that made its way all the way to the top of the country charts, “Drinkin’ Problem”.

A standout on the record, which also appeared on their self-titled EP, “Check Cashin’ Country” unapologetically tells the struggles of being a touring musician.

“I hear that tip jars got a jingle, cause we ain’t got a single on the radio / we make em dance wherever we go, tryin’ turn a nickel into solid country gold it goes T for Texas and Tennesee / we’ve got miles to cover and places to be the highways the only kind of life for me, sure ain’t in it for the money, this ain’t check cashin’ country.”

On a lighter note, their latest single off the project “Make A Little” is plain and simple about making love.

“So we should make a little, Generate a little / Maybe even make the world a better place a little / We could turtle dove, Dixieland delight / You know it can’t be wrong when it feels so right / It all comes down to you and me girl / There’s just not enough love in the world / So we should make a little / Then make a little more tonight”

Whether it’s songs about heartbreak and drinking away your sorrows (“Lonely For You”) or finding new love (“This Old Heart”), On the Rocks is chock-full of twang, fiddles, and genuine country music.

The album release comes on the heels of their big tour announcement with Kacey Musgraves and Little Big Town, which hits NYC on February 24th, 2018. For all of Midland’s upcoming tour dates and more information check out midlandofficial.com