Editor’s Note: I’m very proud of what LA has to offer, musically speaking, to the rest of the world. But as we prepare for 2013, I wanted to acknowledge another hotbed of talent – Nashville. It seems like everyone is moving to Nashville (or Austin) these days. Lots of musicians we love now call the city home.
I’d love to visit – just waiting for that invite from Jack White to hang out at Third Man Records – but, until then, I asked a local, Lindsey Rae Thompson, who we should look out for coming out of Music City. (Also, if you missed it, I profiled Nashville pop trio Leagues earlier this week. Definitely a band to watch!) — RR
Nikki Lane is in perfect company. At this years ACL festival she teamed up for a performance with Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach. Rumors buzzing around town says Dan A may be working with Lane on an upcoming album. Now that’s hot.
The Greenville, SC native skipped from LA to NYC before making roots in Nashville. Just one listen to “Gone, Gone, Gone” and you’ll be carried away to the best of the honkies on Broadway, drunk off her Southern swagger.
When she isn’t swooning and crooning, Lane operates her own vintage boutique called High Class Hillbilly. Watch out for this Nashville gem!
* For fans of Karen Elson, Those Darlins, Lydia Loveless
Natalie Prass popped up on my radar through an electro dream pop side project called Melontropics (a MUST listen for download here) earlier this year. It was a wonderful cry for attention, a demand of ears.
Before I could even finishing googling Prass, the singer/songwriter announced dates with Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, including an opening slot at one of The Ryman shows in October earlier this year. It was clear that Prass could hold an audience, let alone take the famous stage and win over the GPN crowd. This is the birth of the modern modern Nashville singer/songwriter.
Prass is just beginning to unfold, hear some of her tunes here.
* For fans of Feist, Rilo Kiley, Neko Case, Benny Yurco
3. Penicillin Baby
It has been said that East Nashville is the Brooklyn of Nashville and Penicillin Baby is the epitome of that statement. Self-proclaimed as “psychedelic space-trash,” the four piece is young and on the rise. Songwriter Jon Conant hails from the land of The Flaming Lips yet somehow has a way of creating a sound so far west you can taste the sand, or moon dust if you rather. Check out Jams: Volume II.
*For fans of Thee Oh Sees, Tame Impala, Black Moth Super Rainbow
2. Caitlin Rose
Caitlin Rose is as Nashville Country as a Nashville Country woman can get. The clarity of Rose’s voice is made for the halls of the Grand Ole Opry. This is the “Nashville Sound” of 2013. Rose’s records will make you fall in love at first listen, her live sound will leave audiences infatuated. Check out the song that caught my ear, “Own Side Now” and stay tuned for her sophomore album arriving in 2013.
*For fans of The Secret Sisters, First Aid Kit, Kelly Hogan, Andrew Combs
Cherub is hands down THE hottest music coming out of Nashville. Jordan Kelly (one part of Melontropics from above) and Jason Huber have taken Nashville by storm and are one of the most surprising acts tied to the town. One part sexy R&B, one part fat dance beats, Cherub’s music takes you to the sickest parties you’ve ever been to. Songs like “Dear Body” and “Doses & Mimosas” will worm around in your ears for days, carrying you through the night to the hangover. The song “Hold Me” will have you singing at the top of your lungs on the tips of your dancing shoes.
Then with songs like “You, Me and Jodeci” and “La Casa Del Obispo” it becomes clear this young duo is about to shoot like fireworks on the 4th of July. How hot is that? These two are putting out a new album in 2013, watch out world!!
Download their music for free here.
*For fans of Miguel, Frank Ocean, Chromeo