Artists to Watch #2
Wyatt Flores is an artist whose work is suffused with the echoes of past experiences, the poignant remembrances of departed kin, and the enduring hopes for a brighter future — all conveyed through his authentic country music ethos. The Mexican-American, born and bred in the small academic enclave of Stillwater, Oklahoma, unfurls his songs with a raw honesty, crafting narratives that resonate with an unvarnished truth about life, mortality, dependency, suffering, and exuberance.
His upbringing in Stillwater, steeped in musical influences, saw his father on the drums and his uncle on the guitar. His mother’s musical taste introduced him to the storied repertoires of George Strait and Alan Jackson, while his father brought the timeless blues classics into their home. Upon taking a guitar into his hands, Wyatt Flores found his calling, drawing on artists such as Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers, and Jason Isbell as wellsprings of inspiration. His identity, however, is indelibly shaped as much by family as by the cultural milieu of his home state — an influence that resonates within the fibers of his musical creations.
Embedded within a region boasting profound music lineage, hosting names like Garth Brooks, All American Rejects, Cross Canadian Ragweed, and The Great Divide, Flores has absorbed this melodious vitality. Stories of his father’s tenure as a drummer in the Red Dirt music sphere further galvanized his songwriting aspirations, culminating in the release of his inaugural acoustic track, “Travelin’ Kid,” in the spring of 2021.
The subsequent year saw Flores relocate to Nashville, Tennessee to dedicate himself entirely to his musical vocation. He unveiled the well-received single “Losing Sleep” in February of the same year and followed with multiple stand-alone releases over subsequent months. His track “Please Don’t Go” captured widespread attention, amassing over 50 million streams, and propelled him to fill venues across the nation.
With the release of nine singles as an independent artist, 2023 marked a milestone for Flores as he signed with Island Records in collaboration with OEG Management. His initial offering with the label, “Holes,” is a poignant tribute to his family, weaving the narrative of intergenerational economic struggle that pervades his family’s lore. Its cover art is a nod to an heirloom photograph set against the backdrop of his familial mobile home.
Accruing multi-hundred million streams as an independent artist, Flores dispenses with hard-won insight on his 2023 endeavour, Life Lessons, under Island Records. These latest works survey the extensive arc of his recent rise to prominence, his diligent effort in Nashville’s music scene, and his capacity to entertain extensive audiences with sold-out performances. His songwriting couples captivating tunes with sagas that brim with significance.
In early January 2024, he released the track “Milwaukee,” bittersweetly recounting a pivotal, life-altering episode. The song emerged in collaboration with Graham Barham, Gavin Lucas, and Cole Miracle, serving as an inaugural glimpse into his forthcoming music following the lauded Life Lessons.
Flores’ notable trajectory through the music industry has garnered substantial recognition. He continues to collect such honors as being named Spotify’s Hot Country Class of 2024, Amazon’s Breakthrough Artist of the Year, CMT’s Listen Up, along with placements on numerous Artists To Watch lists.
Embarking on his headlining Life Lessons 2024 Tour, Flores is poised to present his dynamic live performances to major cities nationwide, including California’s prestigious Stagecoach festival. Moreover, his reach will extend beyond national confines to international audiences in the United Kingdom, Germany, and The Netherlands, as part of the C2C festival.
Label: Island Records/ Universal Music
Hometown: Stillwater, Oklahoma
Current City: Nashville, Tennessee
Hot Release(s): “Milwaukee”; “Please Don’t Go”; “Break My Bones”
Musical Influences: Turnpike Troubadours, Tyler Childers, Jason Isbell
If You Like: Koe Wetzel, Whiskey Meyers, Chris Stapleton
KEEP UP WITH WYATT FLORES: www.wyattfloresmusic.com www.facebook.com/officialwyattflores www.youtube.com/@wyattflores Instagram/TikTok: @OfficialWyattFlores