2022 has certainly proved one thing … emerging country talent is here, and they aren’t shying away from the spotlight.
This year, emerging artists across the country took the stage at some huge festivals and shows, took center stage at their respective provincial country music associations, and packed their release schedules.
Every year we put together a list of emerging artists that we believe are going to have huge years. We have these artists on our radar, and you should too … Many of these artists are setting themselves up for an even bigger 2023.
9 Emerging Canadian Country Artists To Watch In 2023
1. Owen Riegling
Owen Riegling captured the 2022 Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase title.
He had a busy Canadian Country Music Week, where he played the Diamonds In The Rough showcase and CCMA Songwriters: Unplugged. Owen also crossed one million cumulative streams on platforms, got his first editorial playlist features with Apple Music and Spotify, and an interview with The Ty Bentli Show on Apple Music.
This fall he played opening slots for shows supporting Steven Lee Olsen, Travis Denning, and Tyler Joe Miller.
We will be looking forward to Owen’s release with Universal Music Canada in 2023, as part of his prize for winning the 2022 Boots & Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase … and more!
Listen To Our Chat With Owen From Early Last Year
Taylor-Rae took the runner-up slot at the 2022 Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist showcase. She rocked the stage at Cowboys Music Festival, The Coca Cola Stage at The Calgary Stampede and Sunfest Music Festival.
Her 2021 single “Are You Still Up” has collected almost 2 million streams to date, and her summer single “I Can’t” landed her the cover of Amazon Music’s Breakthrough Country playlist.
Taylor-Rae moved to Nashville in the fall of this year where she’s already finding her space.
We’re looking forward to hearing more from Taylor-Rae next year and seeing the stages she takes in Nashville.
Listen to Our Conversation With Taylor-Rae On The Porch
3. Justin Fancy
Justin Fancy is leaving some huge accomplishments in the rearview of 2022. He captured an award for both Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year at the 2022 East Coast Music Awards, and Fan’s Choice Entertainer of the Year at the 2022 MusicNL Awards.
He released “Better Than You” and “Laid Back Kinda Night”, both of which will be featured on his sophomore album, set for release in mid-2023.
Justin Fancy took the stage as a Top 8 Finalist at the 2022 Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase this past summer and turned heads. We can’t wait to see where the next year takes Justin.
4. Parker Graye
Parker Graye spends her time between Vancouver and Nashville. In 2021, her emotional ballad “Last Time” caught the attention of listeners across the country.
Parker leveraged 2022 in the best way, releasing “Last Rodeo”, her sad girl cover of “Complicated” by Avril Lavigne, and the head-turning, “Good At Gettin’ Gone”. Capturing attention with her current single, she’s been featured on Amazon Music’s Breakthrough Country playlist, and a number of editorial features, including Spotify’s Fresh Finds Country Best of 2022 and Amazon Music’s Best Of 2022 Country and Best Of 2022 Canadian Country.
Earlier this month, Parker crushed her goal of collecting one million streams across platforms. We can’t wait to see what 2023 has in store for this emerging artist.
We Had A Chat With Parker – The Queen Of Sad Country Music
5. Mallory Johnson
Mallory Johnson kicked off 2022 with a semi-finalist spot in SiriusXM’s Top of The Country contest and a win at the East Coast Music Awards.
Her single “Married” was selected for Stingray Radio’s Trending Track with a music video premiere on theboot.com. Her and pals Twin Kennedy collected a CCMA Nomination for Country Music Program or Special of the Year.
She celebrated the release of her debut album in October and took her celebration across Newfoundland for the Surprise Party Tour.
Mallory Joined Us On The Porch – Give The Episode A Listen
6. Devin Cooper
Devin Cooper was a semi-finalist in SiriusXM’s Top Of The Country Contest and Project Wild 2022.
His debut album, Good Things, came out in March of this year, which featured singles “Good Things” and “Country Cliché”. Devin scooped up nominations at the CMAB Awards for Horizon Male Artist Of The Year, Interactive Artist of the Year and Community Spirit.
He released his single “Underdog” in September and took the stage for a number of showcases at CCMA Country Music Week. Throughout the summer he scored a number of slots at the Calgary Stampede.
We’re excited to see what 2023 has in store for Devin Cooper.
Devin Is A Great Storyteller – Listen To His Stories On The Porch
7. Dayna Reid
Dayna Reid was Open Road Recording’s best kept secret until her massive debut at Canadian Country Music Week in Calgary. She immediately won over the hearts of everyone in the room at her showcase.
Seemingly coming out of nowhere, Dayna hasn’t been on the country music scene over the last few years per se. After winning the Magna Hoedown in 2019, she settled into writing and creating her sound with mentor Beverly Mahood.
In September of 2022, she surprised country listeners with her first 3-track EP, which included Front Porch favourite “She’s Me”.
With more on the horizon for Dayna Reid, we can’t wait to watch her star rise.
We Chatted With Dayna On The Porch! Listen to Her Episode Here
8. Mark Ledlin
Mark Ledlin first captured ears across TikTok with his first country single “Drink About Me”, which went viral on the platform. The single landed a number of editorial playlists in its first week on streaming services and amassed 100,000 streams.
An impressive country debut.
By the time Ledlin hit the stage at Boots and Hearts for the Emerging Artist Showcase, he had fans in the crowd not only singing “Drink About Me”, but the following single “Drinking With My Friends”.
It’s safe to say Mark Ledlin is just getting started.
Mark Joined Us For A Great Chat On The Porch
9. Lydia Sutherland
Lydia Sutherland has been on the radar for artists and writers across Canada and across genres for a handful of years. With a number of cuts for prominent artists in the Canadian music landscape, she’s made a name for herself as a talented, soul-driven songwriter.
And this year, she’s set to make a big splash with country music fans too …
With the announcement of her signing with Universal Music Canada in November, along with her single “best friend” which first found the attention of listeners on TikTok, she’s diving head first into the next steps in her career.
Lydia Talked To Us About Her Writing Process And How When She Opens Her Mouth Lyrics Just Fall Out
Lydia will surely have much more to say through the music she releases in 2023 and we can’t wait.
Special Mention: Andrew Hyatt
We couldn’t help but have a special shoutout for Andrew Hyatt.
Taking home the “Rising Star” award at the 2022 CCMA’s and including a … punch line in his acceptance speech is a core memory for many of us at this year’s awards.
Cheers to Andrew and his star that has been rising so long … well … head over to his Instagram to finish the sentence.
2023 is going to be another big year for music in Canada!
We’re looking forward to seeing how artists continue to connect with listeners in creative ways, leverage their platforms to raise awareness to social issues, and keep putting out new music to get us through.
We’re looking forward to seeing these artists make some big moves in 2023.
In country music, the Front Porch has long been a place of reflection. A place where you can look at the life you have inside that front door. A place where time almost seems to stand still, where you can get away. It’s also a place where you can go to observe the world as it passes by you. To think about your place out there beyond the driveway.