Luke Combs Gives Ringing Endorsement to Hill Country

Ever since releasing their debut album in May, the Zane Williams-led Texas music supergroup called Hill Country has been heavily touted by the listeners who’ve been clued into their self-titled record. It just the overall vibe the group captures that makes it one of the most enjoyable listening experiences released in 2020 so far. And apparently the biggest artist in country music at the moment agrees.

“I just can’t stop listening to this Album, it just strikes every chord that I want it to,” Luke Combs tweeted out randomly late Tuesday night (6/30). “The melodies, the harmonies, the instrumentation, and the songs. All just grade A. Y’all check this record out.”

Teaming up with with Zane is fellow singer and songwriter Paul Eason who is also known for playing guitar with for Kevin Fowler, Houston drummer Lyndon Hughes, Austin bassist Sean Rodriguez, and multi-instrumentalist Andy Rogers who gives Hill Country the latitude to articulate just about whatever style of American music they choose, from classic rock to bluegrass, to country and folk. And they take full advantage of it.

Apparently, Luke Combs heard about the album at Saving Country Music. “Would love to get up man, been a fan of yours since 2012 or so,” Luke shouted out to Zane Williams on Wednesday (7/1). “Heard about the album through [Saving Country Music] review actually. Been on repeat since then.”

Hill Country is unafraid of being labeled copycats. They’re just here to let the good times flow. Name checking “Sweet Baby James” in the first song on the album called “River Roll” let’s you know they don’t care if you throw out James Taylor comparisons. That’s kind of the point. When they get to “Hey Susanna” later in the record, the Tom Petty influence is clearly palpable. And if that doesn’t sound like it’s up your alley as a country fan, wait until you get to the mountain music musings of “Evergreen” and “Dixie Darlin’” where the banjo is hot, and the secret weapon of this sextet—multi-part harmonies—makes its presence most known.

“Luke’s tweet was 100% unexpected,” Zane Williams tells Saving Country Music. “I’ve never met him and have no idea how he heard about us. The fact that he would be listening to a relatively unknown group and publicly acknowledge us indicates that he’s a genuine lover of music, and hasn’t lost his passion for discovering new stuff, which is cool to see from someone at his level.”

And just in case you’re wonder what the level of Luke Combs is, he’s yet to not have a single reach #1, with eight of them under his belt so far. His two full-length albums are regularly the #1 and #2 albums on the Billboard Country Albums chart. He’s undeniably the biggest country artist at the moment. A tweet like this from him is momentous.

“We self-produced this record with our own funds, and when all our gigs all got canceled due to COVID we had to scrap our plans to hire a publicist and radio promoter,”
Zane Williams explains. “We just put the album on the internet and hoped that word would spread. Luke’s tweet was a big push to help get that ball rolling….maybe it really is all about the music at the end of the day.  I’d certainly like to think so. Thank you Luke!”

Zane Williams already had a steady gig as a revered and supported artist in Texas Music scene for years, releasing seven records, touring extensively throughout the region. But the magic of Hill Country might be where Zane and his compadres found their calling. Luke Combs seems to think so.

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