If you need proof that there’s a ton of great country music out there right now, look no further than Appalachia.
Tyler Childer is back.
Perhaps the hottest artist in the non-mainstream country music scene, Childers took to Instagram earlier this month for the first time in nearly two years to tease his new song. “Band of Angels.”
His first original release since the surprise violin project Long violent history in 2020, and his 2019 studio album, Field Squire, Childers has managed to stay out of the spotlight, for the most part, in recent years. Nonetheless, fans have been foaming at the mouth for new music this whole time.
The artist known around the world for hit songs like ‘Feathered Indians’ and ‘Whitehouse Road’, along with many others, has revolutionized the country music scene throughout his career and led the charge in revitalizing the genre and bringing attention to the incredible music coming out of the Appalachian region.
Every country music fan knows the big names in the region, dating back to ancient legends like Bill Monroe and Doc Watson, who paved the way for Golden Age powerhouses like Loretta Lynn and Keith Whitley, even more recent artists who have come out of the area like Chris Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson and Childers. The list of artists who belong to this line of country music could go on forever.
All of these artists have had a big impact on good country music, but the more recent ones, like Simpson and Childers in particular, have opened the door for tons of new artists from the region to follow in their footsteps and grace the world with their music. through a larger platform.
In the absence of Childers in the spotlight, there are countless Appalachian artists who have carried the torch and perpetuated the spirit of the region’s music scene.
So as we all keep rehearsing “Angel Band” and anticipating its upcoming music, we should keep searching and listening to all of this other music as well.
For those of you who may not be so familiar with the music of the region, or even if you are, here are some of the top artists who hailed from this region and have gone on to make music in common sense over the past few years.
If you want proof that country music currently has a GREAT place you won’t find in the mainstream, look no further than Appalachia.
Castlewood, Va.-based band Appalachian Soul not only carried the Childers torch to Appalachia, they became one of the hottest bands in the country. Opening shows for Turnpike Troubadours and Whiskey Myers, among others, and headlining shows across the country at advertised venues and the Grand Ole Opry, these guys are the real deal.
With songs that swing between blues, rock, country and soul, 49 Winchester’s deep catalog is highlighted by their latest album, Fortune favors the brave. A musical masterpiece, FFTB is one of the best albums of 2022, and an absolute must for everyone.
“Damn honey” – Fortune favors the brave (2022)
McKinley may be from Cincinnati, OH, just outside of Appalachia, but he cut his teeth and rose to fame playing shows in Appalachia for over a decade, cementing his place. as one of the scene’s elite songwriters.
His 2022 album This mess we’re in is a lyrical masterpiece and an absolute force to be reckoned with.
“Rushintherug” – This mess we’re in (2022)
Logan Halstead is also one of the youngest artists to kill it on the Appalachian music scene right now. Remember the name.
“Homecoming” with Logan Halstead This mess we’re in (2022)
Charles Wesley Godwin
CWG established itself as a powerhouse with 2019 Seneca Creek and proved that he’s not going anywhere with Best Whiskey Riff Album of 2021, How the Mighty Fall. The Morgantown, WV native has spent 2,022 headlining shows across the country, playing high-profile festivals and supporting new touring pal and country music superstar Zach Bryan, continuing to grow his brand and base. of fans.
This guy is going to be huge.
“Jesse” – How the mighty fall (2021)
CWG was recently featured on Zach’s 2022 second album, Summer blues.
“Jamie” by Zach Bryan ft. Charles Wesley Godwin- summer blues (2022)
Chaney came out hot with the release of his debut album Mercy in 2021, and hasn’t looked back. The young artist from eastern Kentucky quickly built up a strong fanbase and, in my opinion, remains one of the most underrated artists in the region.
His OurVinyl sessions which were released earlier this month are a must listen.
“Charlene” – Cole Chaney | OurVinyl Sessions EP (2022)
The Beattyville, KY native is one of the industry’s top storytellers, and his latest album Mad of the rivers and saints of the mountains is more than sufficient proof. It’s another one of the best albums of the year so far.
“Tom Barrett”- Mad of the rivers and saints of the mountains (2022)
John R. Miller
A songwriter extraordinaire in his own way, John R. Miller is another of the most underrated artists in all of country music. Its deep catalog, highlighted by the years 2021 Cushioningis a sonic ride through the trials and tribulations of life in Appalachia, and it’s one you’ll want to jump on sooner rather than later.
“Shenandoah Shakedown” – Cushioning (2021)
“Coming Down” – Deprecated (2021)
Does the song sound familiar to you? Tyler Childers recorded it on his Live at Red Barn record, but it was originally written by John R. Miller. The two played it together at Red Rocks last year.
Waldon has been one of the strongest performers on the scene for several years now, and her latest album No regular dog only reinforced this status. Raised in Monkey’s Eyebrow, KY, Waldon’s Appalachian roots play a huge part in her music, and it pays off.
“Simple as love” – No regular dog (2022)
Lost Dog Street Band
Benjamin Tod and his wife Ashley Mae have traveled and lived across the country, but have never forgotten their Appalachian roots. After years of hopping trains, moving around and touring, the couple, who met as teenagers in Muhlenberg County, KY, finally settled in the area and continued to making top notch country music.
Their last album Glory is no exception. Catch them live now while they’re still on tour, as Tod announced earlier this summer that they’ll be stepping away from the road for the foreseeable future.
Benjamin Tod has also just released a solo project titled, Songs I swore never to sing
“What keeps me awake now” – Glory (2022)
Nicholas Jamerson / Sundy Best
Sundy Best, the duo of longtime friends from Prestonburg, KY, Nicholas Jamerson and Kris Bentley, formed in 2010, and by the time of their split in 2018, they had established themselves as one of the best duos country music.
Luckily for us fans, they announced they would be reuniting in 2020 and released a few songs over the past year, including their latest “Above Ground.” During the band’s hiatus, Jamerson continued to do and play shows with his band the Morning Jays.
“Hindman”- Sky of Almar (2016)
Another West Virginia native, Ferrell’s distinct vocals and spectacular sonic instrumentation have catalyzed an impressive rise to prominence in the non-mainstream country scene nationwide, not just in Appalachia. With eclectic influences that span multiple genres, Ferrell’s robust catalog has something for every music fan.
“In the dreams” – Long time ahead (2021)
The Floyd, Va. native made waves with her debut album Reckless in 2021, and just announced their first headlining tour. Perhaps more of a sonic enigma, Wade blurs the lines between country, rock, pop and folk with a sound all his own.
“Met You” – Reckless (2021)
There may not be a region in the country that produces such talented country music artists as Appalachia has in recent years. And of course, these are just a few of the artists making noise in the area… if you like what you hear, be sure to check out artists like Jeremy Pinnell, Tony Logue, Abby Hamilton, Brit Taylor, Leah Blevins, Grayson Jenkins, and more.
And if you haven’t had a chance to listen yet, check out Tyler Childers’ first single “Angel Band” from his upcoming album. Can I take my dogs to paradise?