SXSW: Country, Americana and Folk artists to watch out for

We’re not travelling all the way from Manchester to Austin for nothing. SXSW has long celebrated emerging country, Americana and folk artists and 2024 is another strong year for these genres. Here are ten we’re particularly excited about.

Bonnie Montgommery
The title-track to Bonnie Montgomery’s 2023 album, River, is a singalong anthem that opens the record with euphoria and strings. The record then drifts between Patsy Cline’s classy swagger and Emmylou Harris’ combination of dance-hall foot-stompers and slow-moving story-telling numbers. With an impressive vocal range and a wide sonic palette, Bonnie is making classic country songs in contemporary ways.

Dale Hollow
Having followed Dale Hollow for a few years, we’re ectastic we’ll finally get the chance to see him live in Austin. Having just released his debut album, Yours Truly, the hype around Dale is deservedly growing. However, if he doesn’t play ‘Cowboys on TV’ live, we will never talk to him again.

Desiree Cannon
As per usual, it was a Western AF session that put Desiree Cannon on our radar. She has the ability to remove you from reality with tender compositions and engrossing songwriting. Her voice and music is immersive, and we expect her live set to follow suit.

Edan Archer
Edan Archer is just a great story-teller. Take latest single, ‘No Good Johnny’, the story of a relationship where one half isn’t pulling their weight. A classic country trope, Edan is playful with the song’s structure, giving it fresh impetus.

Emily Nenni
Similar to Dale, Emily Nenni’s music has long soundtracked Rodeo HQ. Upbeat and rhythmic, Emily’s honky tonk influences mean her music gets you moving. It’s fun, carefree and bound to put a smile on your face.

Folk Bitch Trio
Individually, the members of Folk Bitch Trio’s vocals are stunning. But together, blended in harmony, it’s ethereal and transportive. ‘I Heard’ is a delicate track; one wrong move and the whole thing may fall apart. Meanwhile, ‘Friendly Neighbour’, written in collaboration with Bones & Jones, is a sweet Americana number a la First Aid Kit. With a sound like this, Folk Bitch Trio might be one of the most exciting bands on the SXSW line-up.

Kaitlin Butts
Kaitlin Butts uses character-driven narratives to tell stories of women finding their way out of tricky situations. The result is an album like what else can she do, full of noir-country, pedal steel and meandering songs. Vocally and stylistically, she draws comparisons to country high-flyer Hailey Whitters and the early work of Kacey Musgraves.

Lady Apple Tree
Lady Apple Tree’s music is hard to pin down. Threads of folk run through her self-titled debut album but moments of retro doo-wop appear on songs like ‘Silver Hands’.

Sam Williams
Sam Williams has music royalty running through his bones, but he’s forging his own path in Nashville and is readying for another landmark year and a brand new album. Combining a multitude of eclectic influences with Nashville’s storytelling foundations, he’s an exciting artist making a charge for the top.

The HawtThorns
Sam Phillips wouldn’t have been able to resist The HawtThorns, what with their country-meets-rock’n’roll sound. Their sun-kissed sound and smooth harmonies make you want to do two things: have a beer and get dancing.

Listen to the artists who will be performing at SXSW 2024 by subscribing to the official SXSW Spotify and YouTube Music Video playlists.

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