Do you like the country music of yesteryear but cringe when you hear what's on the radio these days? Do you hurl at the thought of watching the CMT Awards? Then these 14 artists might be for you.
In no particular order:
Although they're no longer a band, we are oblivious to that fact and just consider their break up a hiatus as we think it should be revived. . You may have heard of the singer's new project, Sturgill Simpson. Take note of his electric guitar playing chops. (He's apparently related to legendary old-time folk-blues legend Dock Boggs so that might explain something).
A great singer and songwriter from Canada (we won't hold that against him). He echoes the sounds of Buck Owens and Gram Parsons but makes it his own all while keeping it authentic.
JP HARRIS & THE TOUGH CHOICES
Don't let the heavy metal shirts and long beard fool ya.. Here he is with Nikki Lane doing justice to the Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn tune "After the Fire is Gone".
Rolling from Georgia, these guys are playing their own style of southern country music. It sounds like good times. Take a listen.
HELLBOUND GLORY & LEON VIRGIL BOWERS
Self-penned scumbag country artists Hellbound Glory are apparently taking a hiatus now and re-branding as Leon Virgil Bowers which is the birth name of singer Leroy Virgill. We believe he's got one of the strongest voices in country music. Also, take note of the hat.
We love James' music. If he wasn't plagued with bad management and addiction problems, we think he could be a household name. We will continue to stay optimistic. Also take a listen to "I Hope She Loves You Enough (To Tell a Lie)".
THE WEARY BOYS
Broken up but peppered with reunion shows here and there. These guys are the best you can get. Please help us in convincing these guys to keep it permanent. Now is their time. I ran into Billy Joe Shaver a few months ago and he told me to tell them to stop fooling around because they're too good to not play together.
Quality country and honky-tonk comes from Roger Wallace. We think he should tour again and become a household name.
The Cactus Blossoms
Country Music from Minnesota? You be the judge. Here they're covering the pride of Texas.
RT N' the 44's
One of the best songwriters you'll find in Los Angeles. If you ever see him performing, just always remind him to continue to play his own songs. He can cover any song with the best of em but his own songs are where it's at.
Another L.A-Based country artist, Sam Outlaw recruits some great players for his band as he is dedicated to keeping country music alive in Southern California and we thank him for it.
Whitey Morgan & the 78's
If Waylon Jennings and Thin Lizzy got together and formed a band, you'd get Whitey Morgan & the 78's. Whitey always brings the hardcore honky tonk to stages around the country.
The Good Luck Thrift Store Outfit
One of the best live bands you'll ever see. Their recorded music is great as well, so take a listen.
Side project of a badass Austin-Based heavy rock and roll band, Chili Cold Blood, The Moonhangers bring the country and they bring it right.
Phoenix-Based Tony Martinez shreds it on guitar and his songwriting ain't bad either. Take a listen.
Others to look out for:
Caitlin Rose, The Boomswagglers, Tom VandenAvond, Doug Strahan, Leo Rondeau, Ruby Force, Peewee Moore, Ray Lawrence Jr.