10 New Country Artists You Need to Know: April 2018

From the power-country of Rachel Wammack to the dusty vibes of Kyle Daniel

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Kyle Daniel
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Scott Willis Photography8/10

Kyle Daniel

Sounds like: The gravely twang of Steve Earle with Chris Stapleton's range, plus bigger hooks

For Fans of: Stapleton, Will Hoge, anything from Dave Cobb's Low Country Sound

Why You Should Pay Attention: Daniel's parents always knew they had a musical kid on their hands, even before he came out of the womb: when his banjo-playing dad would strum for his pregnant wife, Daniel would kick up a storm. True to his Kentucky roots, Daniel would make the rounds with his father to local bluegrass festivals and picking parties, taking up the guitar at 13 years old after first trying the saxophone, drums and keys. "When I felt all the notes underneath me, it felt so natural and clicked almost instantly," he says. "I never looked back." Daniel moved to Nashville a decade ago and roomed with buddy Anderson East, spending time in bands (like RS Country New Artist alum Jericho Woods) and supporting Clare Dunn on the road. It may have taken years to get his solo work front and center, but his rich, melodic breed of baritone country is perfect for a moment that finally embraces the Stapletons and the Sturgill Simpsons of the world.

He Says: "It's given artists like us an opportunity to be heard," Daniel says about the current state of country. "People are catching the curve ball, and going, 'Whoa, what is that?' It's different than what people are getting fed by the mainstream. For true music lovers, it's a great thing. These different looks, throwback sounds, live-to-tape versus digital machine-produced content. People are hungry for it."

Hear for Yourself: Single "Hangover Town" is a rocking bit of Stones swagger, with the dusty sing-along quality of Hayes Carll's "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart." M.M.

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