Best Next Jamey Johnson: Dillon Carmichael
With his twangy Telecaster sound and bourbon-deep voice, onetime bouncer Dillon Carmichael is irresistible to fans of a certain type of country music. Call it "outlaw" or "honky-tonk," but it's a subgenre that never goes out of style, and Carmichael knows it. The Kentucky native's sets throughout CMA Fest elicited more than a few whoops, as he previewed tracks off his upcoming Dave Cobb-produced album Hell on an Angel, like the single "It's Simple." But he also nodded to one of the pioneers of his brand by covering Waylon Jennings' "Only Daddy That'll Walk the Line." While fans of Jamey Johnson continue to lament his lack of new music, a worthy substitute is emerging right before their eyes. J.H.