Country music’s popularity is on the rise in Canada, thanks to these artists.
American country artists like Toby Keith and Montgomery Gentry love to sing about their passion for the good ol’ U.S.A., but what about the True North? These five Canadian country stars prove the genre is for patriots everywhere.
5. Small Town Pistols
This vocal duo is composed of brother and sister Tyler and Amanda Wilkinson, and the pair snagged the Group or Duo of the Year award at the 2014 Canadian Country Music Awards. Even their story is perfect for a country song: Both siblings were pursuing solo careers when they went through difficult breakups, inspiring them to start writing songs together.
4. Gord Bamford
Bamford was named 2014 Male Artist of the Year at last year’s Canadian Country Music Awards, and it’s easy to see why. His recent single, “Groovin’ with You,” features the same spoken/sung combination that catapulted Jason Aldean’s “Dirt Road Anthem” to the top of the U.S. charts a few years ago.
3. Jess Moskaluke
Moskaluke may be only 24, but she’s burst on to the Canadian country scene in a big way: She took home the award for Female Artist of the Year at the 2014 Canadian Country Music Awards. Her catchy pop-country vocals and fresh lyrics like “It’s one of those once in a while, blue moon kind of times/Hope the pictures don’t end up online” are a perfect fit for the 20-something demographic.
2. Dean Brody
Brody seems like Canada’s answer to Dierks Bentley: Beyond sharing the same initials, both men have strong vocals, scruffy good looks and a little tongue-in-cheek edge that endears them to fans. Brody’s album Crop Circles won Album of the Year at the 2014 Canadian Country Music Awards, and he’s releasing another album this spring.
1. Brett Kissel
Kissel is a new fan favorite on the Canadian country scene, winning Breakthrough Artist of the Year at the Juno Awards in 2014. His video for the single “3-2-1” also won Video of the Year at last year’s Canadian Country Music Awards. Kissel also seems to be making himself at home in Nashville, as he’s performed the national anthem several times at the Nashville Predators hockey games.