The 50th annual Country Radio Seminar ended on Friday night (Feb. 15) with the New Faces of Country Music Show, which highlighted the style’s most promising up-and-coming expertise. While Jimmie Allen, Russell Dickerson, Lindsay Ell, LANCO, and Dylan Scott had been voted onto the present by America’s high radio programmers and carried out a brief set for the business viewers, the night additionally served as a celebration of the seminar’s fiftieth anniversary.
Tim McGraw stunned the gang of radio executives when he kicked off the night with a efficiency of “Don’t Take the Girl.” His one-song set adopted a video bundle the place he seemed again on his New Faces showcase from 25 years in the past and recalled that fateful day in 1994 when he met his future spouse, Faith Hill, who was additionally on the lineup that 12 months.
Additional video packages from Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton and Lee Brice had been proven as they mirrored on how their New Faces look helped launch their careers. Keith Urban was additionally readily available to honor CRS govt director Bill Mayne, who’s retiring this 12 months.
The night showcased a various roster of expertise throughout the nation style the place Dickerson and Ell’s star energy was obvious. Dickerson led the cost with an brisk four-song set that highlighted his headliner standing. Set opener “Every Little Thing” had the performer working across the stage accompanied by hand-snapped rhythms, infectious beats and a sing-along refrain as he sang of a girl he simply can’t get sufficient of. His vigorous set continued with a one-two punch of his first two chart-toppers, “Blue Tacoma” and “Yours,” earlier than he closed with “MGNO,” which stands for "My Girls Night Out." As he belted snippets of Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” and Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody,” he leapt into the viewers to bounce with radio executives, thanking them for believing in him and making his goals come true.
Having toured with Urban, Brad Paisley and Sugarland over the past 12 months, Ell commanded the New Faces stage like a professional. She kicked off her guitar-driven set with Top 20 hit “Criminal” as fiery electrical guitar options and a megaphone drove the tune’s message dwelling. The soulful “Castle” and atmospheric “Space” showcased her simple expertise whereas the debut of a brand new tune captivated the room. “Thank you a lot to each one among you for placing me on this stage. You modified my life and I might be perpetually grateful,” she mentioned.
Much like Dickerson’s spirited efficiency, Allen made some extent to point out his appreciation to the radio business by strolling to the again of the room and high-fiving as many individuals as he might. Following a touching video the place his four-year-old son Aiden thanked nation radio for enjoying his dad’s music, Allen launched into the catchy “County Lines.” He then expressed his gratitude to the style for accepting him.
“I’m grateful for this chance,” he mentioned, thanking nation radio for his first No. 1 with debut single “Best Shot.” “I get to look my son within the eyes and inform him, ‘If you’re employed laborious sufficient and encompass your self with the proper folks, your goals can come true.’” The triumphant “Underdogs” adopted “Best Shot” earlier than he closed his efficiency with the poignant “All Tractors Ain’t Green,” which he penned about being a black artist within the nation style.
Both LANCO and Scott additionally debuted new materials throughout their New Faces efficiency. While LANCO peppered their set with memorable radio singles “Born To Love You” and former hit “Greatest Love Story,” the band’s new monitor “Save Me” struck a chord because it was written from the tales their followers have shared with them, particularly how folks of their lives saved them throughout instances of hardship.
Scott closed 2019's CRS by highlighting his versatile influences. After performing the bass-heavy “Hooked” and his quickest rising single “Nothing To Do Town,” the singer lined “Don’t Close Your Eyes” from his hero, Keith Whitley. Strapping on an acoustic guitar, the emotional ballad was the right segue from “Nobody,” a brand new piano ballad he penned for his spouse. He closed the present by performing his first No. 1 “My Girl,” which was impressed by his spouse rapping alongside to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.”
“In 2013, I attended my very first CRS New Faces present. I keep in mind considering to myself, ‘If I might ever play this stage it’d be the most important factor in my profession,’” he recalled earlier than thanking these within the room. “Thank you to nation radio for giving me a voice and letting me play my music. It’s been a protracted ten years, I’ve been right here ten years, however I’m so blissful and blessed.”