The final months of 2022 are here, and just like the first portion of the year, it is jam packed in an increasingly cluttered environment for new releases. Instead of being overwhelmed, use this guide to help you navigate through the crush of titles, with the first 20 albums listed considered some of the top releases.
Everybody wants to be 90s country these days, but nobody wants to live through an era without the wide proliferation of the internet, and when cell phones looked like carry-on luggage. But if you want the real stuff, you’re always best going directly to the source, like Ronnie Dunn.
90s country is back on the upswing, and either you can get your fix from some new performer who was still soiling their diapers or learning multiplication tables when Alan Jackson and Brooks & Dunn were dominating country radio, or you can go to the source.
You can find a detailed list of all the confirmed album releases for the 2nd half of 2022 below, some specific albums from each release week that you should make sure to not overlook, and the always-exciting ‘Rumor Mill’ where intelligence is gathered on upcoming releases.
49 Winchester, Aaron Watson, American Aquarium, Arlo McKinley, BlackHawk, Brit Taylor, Channing Wilson, Dalton Domino, Daniel Miller, Eric Strickland, Gabe Lee, Gene Watson, Hank Williams Jr., IV and the Strange Band, Jake Worthington, Jason Hawk Harris, John Anderson, Kelsey Waldon, Kevin Galloway, Lyle Lovett, Michaela Anne, Pecos and the Rooftops, Seve Earle, Sunny Sweeney, Tami Neilson, The Panhandlers, The Tender Things, Turnpike Troubadours, Wade Sapp, Wilco, Willi Carlisle, Zach Bryan
Where in the world has Wade Hayes been? He’s been hiding in the same dark honky tonk on the edge of town as actual county music for the last decade or so. How country is his latest record Who Saved Who? The title track is about the love of his dog if that gives you any indication. That’s to say his newest album is unapologetically country.
Kudos to Blake Shelton for giving a hand up to traditional country music through his work on ‘The Voice.’ But if he wanted to show true leadership and really make an impact, he would show that same leadership with his own music.
…Back to the argument Blake Shelton had with Adam Levine on The Voice as America watched on, and they both battled to be picked as the judge for Adam Wakefield, Blake Shelton said some things about country that needed to be heard, and were quite surprising coming from Blake. Usually the banter between judges is quite lighthearted on the show. But in this case, it got fairly heated.
Mary Sarah is an unusual case when it comes to mainstream country prospects. On the surface, you have this gorgeous young woman with lots of styling, pizzazz, and stage presence, seasoned from performing since a very early age, like a pop country star ready to go out of the box. But what does she decide to do with her debut album? She releases a duets record with country legends.
Like so many of these contestants, not much has come of Jake Worthington in regards to industry success after his finale appearance in May of 2014, but he has just released a new EP. Settling somewhere between John Anderson and George Strait, this five-song offering is a straight-laced true country testament from start to finish that leaves little to no doubt where the heart of the young Jake Worthington lies.
American Idol, Blake Shelton, Chris Stapleton, Craig Wayne Boyd, George Strait, Jake Worthington, John Anderson, Johnny Cash, Kacey Musgraves, Review, Scotty McCreery, Sturgill Simpson, The Voice, Wayne Mills
Forget that The Voice is one of the highest-rated shows on NBC, and one of the most popular shows in all of television. The legacy of the competition is for the winners to sink right back down into obscurity after the season finale. If Craig Wayne Boyd becomes a successful music star as a champion of ‘The Voice,’ he’d arguably the the first in the show’s history.
Jake Worthington finished 2nd and has captured the hearts and imaginations of many traditional country fans by wearing a big cowboy hat, and singing Keith Whitley songs on the show every chance he got, along with songs from Waylon Jennings, Hank Williams Jr., and others throughout the competition.
American Idol, Big Machine Records, Blake Shelton, Carrie Underwood, Dan + Shay, Dia Frampton, Hank Williams Jr., Jake Worthington, Javier Colon, Jennifer Hudson, Keith Whitley, Kellie Pickler, Kelly Clarkson, Scotty McCreery, The Voice, Waylon Jennings