Spotify reveals the Spotlight on 2016 Country artists
Spotify’s Annual List of Future Country Music Stars Includes Maren Morris, Haley Georgia and Ryan Kinder
Tuesday 15 December 2015: Following Spotify’s look back at the biggest artists of 2015, we are now looking ahead at the brightest Country stars of 2016, as we reveal the Spotlight on 2016 Country Artists.
Spotlight is Spotify’s annual list of the best new artists that we believe Country music fans will love in the year to come. The Spotlight on 2016 list for Country features artists including Brooke Eden, Haley Georgia, Ryan Kinder, Maren Morris, Steve Moakler, all of which Spotify is tipping for greatness over the coming year.
The Spotlight on 2016 list was compiled using a combination of curation by Spotify’s team of in-house music experts and an analysis of streaming data from our millions of users, including the artists whose music appears in Spotify’s viral charts and is currently being listened to by Spotify’s most musically-influential users. Artists who qualify typically should not have released an album yet, have gained considerable hype, and have played well-received live performances.
Spotlight on 2016 Country Artists (full biographies below)
● Maren Morris
● Haley Georgia
● Ryan Kinder
● Steve Moakler
● Brooke Eden
● High Valley
● Lauren Alaina
● Lucie Silvas
● Aubrie Sellers
● Russel Dickerson
● Jon Langston
● Dylan Scott
● Tara Thomas
Copeland Isaacson, Account Manager, Label Relations, said: ” Discovery is at the core of Spotify and over the last three years, the ‘Spotlight On Country’ program has developed into a significant launch pad for new artists on Spotify. Our impressive alumni features many of Nashville’s hottest new acts and next superstars including Sam Hunt, Cam, Thomas Rhett, Kelsea Ballerini, Brett Eldredge, Chris Stapleton and many more.
In 2016, Nashville’s pool of talent is deeper than ever with many outstanding new artists; we’ve once again released a dedicated ‘Spotlight on Country’ program highlighting a buzzworthy lineup of new and unsigned artists that we believe are poised to have a huge year on Spotify and beyond.
Spotlight is a cornerstone of our commitment to artist development and creates an important-dedicated lane for driving discovery with early press, marketing, and promotion – often in advance of a real radio story. It’s a privilege to expose so many young talented artists to our 75M users, and we’re thrilled to start working with the ‘Spotlight On Country 2016’ artists over the coming months and years!”
Maren Morris: “Spotify has always been a great taste making platform, so I am thrilled and honored to be included in Spotify’s Spotlight on Country 2016 with some amazing talent next to me!”
Steve Moakler: “Having been a touring artist for the past 6 years, I know how hard it is to break through the noise and build an audience. I’m really grateful to Spotify for including me in their ‘Spotlight on Country’ playlist and helping us share our music with so many new listeners.”
Previous Spotlight stars have included Sam Hunt, Thomas Rhett, Cam, Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Eldredge,
Spotify’s Spotlight program aims to both bring the best new music to millions of music fans on Spotify, and also to help new artists build their careers by finding and connecting with a fan base on Spotify.
Spotify will be holding a series of events showcasing a number of Spotlight on 2016 artists in London, New York, Stockholm and Nashville.
You can listen to the Spotlight on 2016 Country playlist here.
Columbia Nashville singer/songwriter Maren Morris has quickly established herself in Nashville’s music community with songwriting and vocal stylings that reflect her country, folk and pop influences, with Rolling Stone Country touting her “a stellar solo artist in her own right.” Currently on Spotify, songs from her self-titled EP, have garnered critical acclaim and more than 2.5 million streams in little over a month, with 3 songs hitting Spotify’s US and Global “Viral 50” chart.
Houston native Haley Georgia has wanted to be a songwriter for as long as she can remember. Gaining inspiration from artists like Taylor Swift, Haley began writing and performing in local talent competitions from an early age. Flash forward to a few years later, she has just finished a tour with Chase Rise in 2015. Her track “Ridiculous” has reached over 1 million streams on Spotify. And now, this 21-year-old is currently in the studio recording her debut album for EMI Records Nashville.
Born in Knoxville, TN and raised in Alabama, Ryan Kinder is a self-taught guitar and according to Rolling Stone he is “The John Mayer of country music”. He has shared the stage with Tim McGraw and Darius Rucker, among others, and most recently as direct support for Brett Eldredge and Zac Brown, who personally handpicked Ryan to support his Fall 2014 tour. Kinder is currently writing and recording his debut album for with multi-Grammy Award winning producer Paul Worley.
Steve continues to build a platform in the country market, working in the studio with GRAMMY® Award Winning Producer, Luke Laird (Kacey Musgraves). Steve has been profiled by outlets like Paste Magazine and noted as an “Artist to Watch” by Nashville Lifestyles and acclaimed country radio DJ Bobby Bones. His new single, “Suitcase,” (written by Luke Laird, Barry Dean and Thomas Rhett) is the first release off his forthcoming record, which comes out in 2016.
An accomplished performer at 13, Brooke opened for big names like Alan Jackson and Brooks & Dunn all the while working her way through school to earn a degree in marketing from the University of Florida. Now in Nashville, Brooke is an accomplished songwriter who’s written over 100 songs in the past year alone. She has been named one of VOGUE’s “Top 10 Country ‘It’ Girls”, People magazine’s “7 New Country Acts You Should Check Out”, CMT’s “Next Women of Country” and an “Artist to Watch” by both NASH Country Weekly and Nashville Lifestyles.
Formerly known as Lancaster & Company, LANco includes members Brandon Lancaster, Tripp Howell, Eric Steedly, Jared Hampton, and Chandler Baldwin. The band recently released an EP on Spotify, featuring the tracks “Trouble Maker,” “We Do,” “American Love Story,” and “High.”
Recently they have been working with Jay Joyce (Neon Cross), known for his work with Eric Church, Little Big Town, Cage the Elephant, Carrie Underwood and more.
Throughout their music career, High Valley has earned many accolades including 10 GMA Canada Covenant Awards, multiple CCMA Award and JUNO Award nominations and the 2013 CCMA Award for Interactive Artist of the Year. A breakout in 2014, their “County Line” holds the record as the longest running Top 10 hit on the Canadian country music charts that year. High Valley is destined to become one of the most accomplished country music acts in the business.
Georgia native Lauren Alaina captured America’s hearts when she appeared on Season 10 of American Idol. Lauren’s self-titled EP, the highly-anticipated follow-up to her No. 1-debuting first album Wildflower, released October 2 on Mercury Nashville / 19 / Interscope Records. In addition to her latest single “Next Boyfriend” and the ESPN exclusive track “History,” Lauren co-wrote all of the five-song EP.
Lucie started playing the piano and writing songs at age 10 but wasn’t exposed to the music industry until she was 17 when she went out on the road as a backing singer for British singer/songwriter Judie Tzuke. She has just released her long-awaited and much anticipated album, “Letters To Ghosts” for Caroline Records and her live show continues to wow critics and fans alike.
Aubrie Sellers was basted in music before she was even born. Her father is Jason Sellers, now a top songwriter, and her mother is singer Lee Ann Womack. To try to put a label on her sound is tricky. If there’s a slight drawl when she sings, it’s where she comes from. But the sound could only be described as ‘‘garage country.’’
Already in their career, the duo of Preston Brust and Chris Lucas have enjoyed hit singles, sold-out concert appearances here and abroad, and have tasted the top of the chart as two of Nashville’s quickest-rising songwriters. Their single “I Love This Life” is rising on the Country Billboard charts and is currently in the Hot 100.
Everyone likes Russ as soon as they meet him. Everyone falls in love with Russ when they first hear him. His drive to chase his calling has enabled him to share the stage with artists like Florida Georgia Line, Billy Currington, Kip Moore, Darius Rucker, Kelly Pickler and more. He has traveled the country falling more and more in love with country fans everywhere and he isn’t stopping anytime soon.
Jon, a resident of Nashville, TN, has created his own style and sound from a variety of influences. Growing up listening to everything from Alan Jackson to the Eagles, Langston has crafted a fresh, new country music sound that is ready for take off. Now 24 years old, has a publishing deal with Sony ATV, and has been Selling out shows across the southeast, including the Georgia Theatre.
With his career in full swing, Dylan is quickly establishing himself as a force to be reckoned with in country music. His social media stats are exploding and his live show is proving that Dylan is an exceptional entertainer as well as being a world-class vocalist. He is busy traveling the country performing in venues of every type. His next big step is just around the corner.
Initially gaining buzz performing at some of Nashville’s premiere listening rooms and writers’ rounds, Tara Thompson throws old-school Country melodies together with a quirky tongue-in-cheek spin on her life experiences. A blood relative to the one and only Loretta Lynn, the spunky songstress inked a joint venture songwriting contract with Big Machine Music and Spoon’s Tunes Publishing.
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