Nashville Music Guide’s Artists to Watch 2024

Artists to Watch #19

Colin Stough, a prodigious 19-year-old Country Rock talent from Gattman, Mississippi, has made remarkable progress in a relatively short timeframe. With the release of his first EP, Promiseland, Stough is positioning himself at the outset of a promising musical career. Initiating his journey with the guitar at the tender age of eight, Stough took his first steps towards his artistic ambitions by the age of ten when he exchanged his childhood belongings for his inaugural guitar at a local pawn establishment — an instrument he cherishes and plays to this day.

Upon the completion of his secondary education, Stough, an innately skilled vocalist and autodidactic songwriter, entered the workforce as an HVAC technician. It was at his mother’s behest that he auditioned for the nationally renowned talent competition, American Idol, where his performances earned the acclaim of the judging panel, comprising luminaries such as Luke Bryan, Katy Perry, and Lionel Richie. Stough’s appearances captivated the national audience, thereby garnering a robust fan following. The following months were dedicated to penning and recording original compositions, alongside nationwide touring, showcasing his commanding vocal prowess and distinguished guitar skills.

With a contract under 19 Recordings/BMG, Stough’s unique fusion of Southern Rock and traditional Country elements has seen his songs, including “I Still Talk To Jesus” and “Bad Day”, amass in excess of 9.4 million global on-demand streams. In September of 2023, he unveiled his single “Promiseland,” complemented by an official music video. This powerhouse title track of his debut EP signifies the advent of Stough’s potentially illustrious future in the music industry.

As the year 2024 commenced, the artist from 19 Recordings/BMG, Colin Stough, conveyed a potent narrative of determination by presenting an acoustic version of “I Still Talk To Jesus (Acoustic),” one of his most notable works. This rendition is accessible on all streaming platforms and digital retailers, which can be listened to here:

The song “I Still Talk To Jesus” is a Country-Rock ballad that epitomizes unyielding optimism. Originally performed during Stough’s remarkable run on ABC’s American Idol in 2022, where he achieved third place in Season 21, the song was released with his Top 5 cohort, providing an emotive glimpse into the resilience of the human spirit. The acoustic adaptation, produced by Sean Rogers, accentuates its core message by employing a simple guitar arrangement that complements Stough’s dynamic Mississippi-inspired vocals, thus presenting an arresting synthesis of emotive depth and delicate vocal precision. Additionally, Mike Rodway documented and edited a stark, unadorned performance of this wholly authentic piece, written by Stough in collaboration with Sean Thomas Rogers and Francisco Martin.

Throughout 2023, Colin Stough not only headlined tours but also supported notable artists such as Kidd G and Drake White. He is slated to accompany Chase Matthew on tour starting in February 2024.

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