20 Best Debuts of 2013

From the precocious Lorde to the impish Fidlar, these are the rookies of the year

Brandy Clark, '12 Stories'
20
Courtsy Slate Creek Records11/20

11. Brandy Clark, '12 Stories'

Clark's debut is all Nashville-ninja craftsmanship and smart riffing on drugs ("Get High," "Take a Little Pill"), gals with guns ("Stripes," "Crazy Women"), and the Lord ("Pray to Jesus," which features the classic line "We pray to Jesus and we play the lotto / 'Cause there aint but two ways/ we can change tomorrow"). She's the kind of talent that makes the term "alt-country" unnecessary.

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