Koe Wetzel plays by his own rules, and people love him for it.
It’s hard to argue with his success, as his country rock star persona has him selling out shows, earning millions of streams across the country, and even hosting his own music festivals. The Pittsburg, Texas native’s grew up around music, listening to everything from George Jones and Nirvana, to Notorious B.I.G., and his eclectic taste shows in his music. While his music really can’t be defined by a single genre, this country-grunge thing he’s got going is something I can definitely get behind.
A former football player, Koe played linebacker at Tarleton State University, before dropping out of school to pursue music. Shortly thereafter he released his debut album Out on Parole in 2015, laying the foundation for what would become an explosive career. With the release of his highly anticipated fourth album Sellout in November 2020, Koe just continues to impress.
His social media presence is pure gold, and his live shows are a party no one wants to miss. All of these things have contributed to Koe’s success in building a unique brand and a devout fanbase, making him one of the most loved artists on the Texas scene.
All of that being said, if you’re Koe fan looking for some similar stuff to listen to, here are eight artists you should check out ASAP.
Read Southall Band
The Oklahoma-based country/rock group Read Southall Band is reminiscent of the legendary Cross Canadian Ragweed. Frontman Read Southall and Koe met towards the beginning of their careers playing a private gig through a mutual connection, and the rest is history. This past Christmas, the two even performed a run of shows together. The band’s 2018 Live at Tower Theatre album is one of the best live albums out there.
“Runnin’” – Live at Tower Theatre (2018)
“Why” – Borrowed Time (2017)
“Don’t Tell Me (Live)” – Live at Tower Theatre (2018)
“Broke Ass Kid” (2019)
“How Did You Know” – Who Cares – EP (2019)
“Million Miles” – Green (2017)
“Loose Ends” – Overgrown (2020)
“Alone” – Overgrown (2020)
“Happier Alone” – Black Sheep (2021)
“Born With a Broken Heart” -Heartbreak Coming – EP (2016)
“Deja Vu” – “Black Sheep (20210)
Gannon Fremin & CCREV
“Rock n Roll” – Okie Thump – EP (2020)
“Rose Tattoo” – Okie Thump – EP (2020)
Giovannie and the Hired Guns
Like Koe, Giovannie and the Hired Guns like to have a good time and play by their own rules. Frontman Giovannie Yanez is good friends with Koe, and even appeared in his “Forever” music video. The band’s most recent album, 2020’s Giovannie and the Hired Guns, was spectacular.
“10-56A” – Giovannie and the Hired Guns (2020)
“Another Time” – Bad Habits (2017)
Pecos & the Rooftops
“This Damn Song” (2019)
“Wouldn’t Have to Miss You” – Red Eye E.P. (2020)
“Lonely With You” – Red Eye E.P. (2020)
And of course, you could throw Kolby Cooper in this category as well, along with many other great acts in the Texas/Red Dirt scene. Something tells me Kolby won’t have any trouble blowing up on his own though.
This is just a little something to get you started.