Artists To Watch
There's no doubt that the past few years have been a challenge for Texas Country Artists.
TCMM's "Artists to Watch" features some overcomers we've noticed are coming up strong.
This issue we feature Season Ammons, Jaret Ray Reddick and Jon Kott Band!!
Award-winning Texas Americana Artist Unveils Frank Yet Fun New Album Due July 2023
No Restraint is award-winning Americana artist Season Ammons’ most freewheeling and fun release to date, despite its sometimes weighty subject matter. With some rebel country accents, Motown-y soul, and rootsy blues enhanced by vivid ‘80s production flourishes, this ultra-relatable and stylistically diverse album is poised to propel Ammons far beyond cult status.
Building on the momentum of her acclaimed sophomore collection, 2019’s Soul/Blues Abbey Road-recorded Steel Hearts coupled with her multiple Top 40 Texas Country hit album “Neon Side of Town” she seems to fit somewhere neatly between the "Don’t Fence Me In" mentality of Texas Country and the open arms of Americana. Her latest Americana offering “No Restraint” finds Ammons exploring both the psychological troughs and creative freedoms of the pandemic, while also revisiting older songs that found fresh resonance during lockdowns that challenged her sobriety and self-identity.
“Having no restraint is my biggest asset and also my biggest downfall,” she explained. “During the pandemic I went through a full spectrum of a mental breakdown but also a breakthrough.”
Recorded with her longtime producer David Percefull in small-town Wimberley, Texas during a pandemic-enforced hiatus from playing standing-room-only shows everywhere from London to Nashville, No Restraint captures Ammons taking her time – and some chances. A Trojan Horse of an album, it sweetens serious subject matter – heartache, addiction, self-actualization, mental health – with a wide-eyed playfulness rare in such a seasoned artist.
“I feel like my soul writes songs to help me make sense of life's journey,” said Ammons. “But, as much as I write for my own healing and understanding, I feel like this new album has universal themes. I want that sense of relatability, authenticity, empowerment – and enjoyment for the listener!"
You can follow Season Ammons on:
Jaret Ray Reddick
“I sing in a punk rock band” Jaret Reddick tells everyone on the first line of “Way More Country” – the first track on his debut solo Texas Country album, Just Woke Up. Of course, this is true; many will know Jaret best in his role as frontman of the legendary pop punk band Bowling For Soup. Even those who don’t know the name may know the voice from songs like 1985, Girl All The Bad Guys Want, High School Never Ends and I Wanna Be Brad Pitt, not to mention the theme song from the Disney smash hit cartoon Phineas and Ferb. He’s also the voice for the mascot of the US national pizza chain Chuck E Cheese and the host of three successful podcasts (Jaret Goes To The Movies, The Rock Star Dad Show and Music Networking 101).
But before the world of punk rock came calling for Jaret, a lifelong love of country music was instilled in him from a young age, as he will eagerly tell you himself. “Honestly, listening to Waylon, Willie, Dolly and the Eagles is what taught me to harmonize and how to write a song. Those songs played constantly in the car and the house when I was a kid” he remembers fondly. “If you listen to BFS, you will hear it. The songs are stories. That’s my favorite thing about country music. The visual stories the songs tell just seem so real to the listener.”
“I have wanted to do a country album since I can remember,” says Jaret as he shows his tattoos of Waylon Jennings and Wille Nelson. With all of the commitments listed above, time to record a Country album never quite seemed to be there. Enter the COVID-19 pandemic, and Jaret’s longtime friend and collaborator Zac Maloy. “He said, we are doing this country album. You have been talking about it for years and we are doing it NOW!” Jaret explains.
Three weeks of sending song ideas through text message, an all star band of Country musicians and a couple of trips to Nashville later, the end result was Just Woke Up. Containing twelve songs full of love, laughter, stories and of course, the great state of Texas, Just Woke Up has been heralded by fans old and new alike. Released on the 11th of March 2022 under his full name, Jaret Ray Reddick, Jaret celebrated the album’s release with an invitation to play the prestigious C2C Music Festival in the UK – the biggest Country event on the UK music calendar.
The first single from Just Woke Up, the heartfelt ode to best friends “One Of The Good Ones” has been a huge success across Country radio, hitting the Top 40 on CDX Traction Texas. Jaret hopes to follow the success of One Of The Good Ones with his next single & video, “Drunk As It Takes”. Live shows are being scheduled across Texas for the rest of the year, please check out the official Jaret Ray Reddick website for details.
You can follow Jaret Ray Reddick on:
Jon Kott Band
The Jon Kott Band epitomizes the spirit of Texas Red Dirt.
A hard-traveling outfit based in Katy, TX, their weary, relentlessly honest songwriting has won over countless fans across the south.
The group exist at the crossroads of country and rock ’n’ roll - energetic, thrilling to watch, yet still rooted in the stories of everyday people.
With several new releases on the horizon, Jon and his band are on the verge of becoming icons of the Texas Sound.
You can follow Jon Hope on: