Country to Country 2016 (London) – Introducing: Day Three
C2C 2016 is already just around the corner, and we’re on hand to help you get acquainted with the acts playing the Main Stage and the Yamaha Music Stage, which is situated at the back of the main arena and will feature acts playing in the show intervals. Here is day three – don’t forget to look out for days one and two, and our comprehensive guide to what’s on for the entire week, very soon.
Andrew Combs – Main Stage
The Dallas-born Nashville resident released his debut EP ‘Tennessee Time’ in 2010, prompting comparisons to Guy Clark, before later signing with publishing company Razor & Tie. In 2012 he released his debut full-length album ‘Worried Man’, garnering critical praise, and in 2015 followed it up with ‘All These Dreams’. He has previously performed with the likes of Shovels & Rope and Caitlin Rose, working in the country folk/Americana vein.
Striking Matches – Yamaha Music Stage
This guitar-slinging duo first caught attention in 2012, when a couple of their songs landed on the hit TV show Nashville. Since then they have placed 9 of their co-writes on the show, released their debut album ‘Nothing But The Silence’, and impressed audiences on multiple continents with their virtuosic and synchronised skills. Their bluesy, country rock sound is laced with killer pop melodies and a hell of a lot of guitar action.
Chris Stapleton – Main Stage
Possessing a voice which has been described as the male counterpart to Adele, Chris Stapleton made his name by writing hit songs within the Nashville community (Crash And Burn, Drink A Beer, Come Back Song, Your Man), scoring multiple #1 hits. In 2013 he signed with Mercury Nashville, releasing the single ‘What Are You Listening To?’ – but it wasn’t until May 2015 when he unveiled his debut solo album ‘Traveller’. Ever since his hybrid of country, folk, Americana, soul, blues and rock hit shelves he’s been winning awards left right and centre.
Frankie Ballard – Yamaha Music Stage
Another guitar slinger, Frankie Ballard is set to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Keith Urban and Brad Paisley, but just a little bit more bad-boy. His edgy, good-timin’ image is combined with country rock smashes and a healthy dose of heartfelt storytelling. Frankie released his debut album in 2011, but it wasn’t until his second record ‘Sunshine & Whiskey’ that he broke through, receiving his first #1 hit with ‘Helluva Life’ in 2013. His latest single is ‘It All Started With A Beer’, proving once again that he’s more than what you see on the surface.
Kacey Musgraves – Main Stage
Kacey Musgraves’ debut single ‘Merry Go Round’ was her breakout hit in late 2012, and its honest, blunt portrayal of small town life set against a backdrop of real country sounds served as the basis for her debut album ‘Same Trailer Different Park’. The record won a Grammy, while later single ‘Follow Your Arrow’ became a gay rights anthem and won CMA for Song of the Year despite its lack of radio play. In 2015 she released her second album ‘Pageant Material’, channelling a 1960s Nashville Sound, and on her latest of many European tours last November, she sold out the Royal Albert Hall.
Eric Church – Main Stage
Eric Church first hit the scene in 2006, pushing buttons with his country rock sound and a few controversial songs. He continued to take risks as his career progressed, and in 2011 released his career album ‘Chief’, a record that was well-awarded in addition to providing him the first of several #1 hits, ‘Drink In My Hand’. In 2014 he released ‘The Outsiders’, a boundary-pushing album that cemented his position at the helm of the format, and in November 2015 he surprise-released ‘Mr. Misunderstood’. He is a phenomenal live performer and is guaranteed to bring the house down.