C2C 2023: 10 Must-See Acts for Every Mood

It’s easy to be dazzled by country radio giants like this year’s Country to Country (C2C) festival main stage headliners Zac Brown Band, Thomas Rhett and Lady A. And of course we’re excited by the current, rocketing stars filling the earlier arena spots like Caylee Hammack (featured photo) and Kameron Marlowe.

But, if you’re heading to the London location of C2C do not overlook the smaller “festival stages” dotted about the 02 Complex with entertainment on from 13:00 on Friday and 11:00 on Saturday and Sunday. It’s on these stages we first heard Nashville’s then next big things like current favourite Lainey Wilson. Scroll down for 10 acts to suit every country music vibe (we’ve tried to pick up-and-coming acts you may not yet have seen live / heard of).


49 Winchester

You’ll have plenty of time to catch this five-piece band in the UK this year: they’ll be opening for Luke Comb’s Europe tour in October and have added their own London show. But get to know them now and enjoy some real Honky Tonk music. This band is a must for fans of Midland, ZBB’s “countrier” stuff and Brooks and Dunn days of country.

Drake Milligan

Can you imagine Alan Jackson era songs delivered by Elvis? Well that’s how we’d sum up this Texas actor / singer (who played Elvis on an NBC series and it shows). Recommended for fans of Jon Pardi, Frankie Ballard and two-stepping.


First Time flyers

When four favourite artists from the UK country scene join forces, we’re paying attention. You may have seen these artists on the C2C stages separately before: Jake Morrell, Poppy Fardell, Vicki Manser and Tim Prottey-Jones (founding member of The Wandering Hearts). We’re interesting to see how this quartet make their own mark, but know they’ve got the vocals and songwriting prowess to do great things.


When a duo works, it really works. This male / female Texan duo work, with their complementary voices delivering rousing pop-country songs it’s easy to imagine Lady A recording.


Madeline Edwards

Whether it’s from the empowering sentiment of songs like Wolves, or the vocals from one of the best voices you’ll hear all weekend, catch Madeline wherever you can. She’s also the pen behind absolute anthem Mama, Dolly & Jesus.


Pillbox Patti

Stage name of songwriter Nicolette Hayford who’s written hits with Ashley McBryde. Sultry social commentary on small town life with the spiky attitude of Pistol Annies or early Kacey Musgraves.

Ashley Cooke

A singer-songwriter with familiar territory songs (love gone right, a lot of love gone wrong) but with surprising takes with songs like It’s Been a Year, she’s likely to charm fans of Ingrid Andress and Caitlyn Smith.


Randall King

Texan turned Nashvillian, Randall has been dubbed a ‘modern traditionalist’. He’s got both types of music here, ‘country and western’ and is likely to win over fans of Josh Turner or the glory days of George Strait.  

Tyler Booth

This Kentucky native is only 26, but you’d swear he was around for the golden 90s era of country. His rich, bass voice has seen him championed by Brooks and Dunn and touring with Dwight Yokum. Real Country right here.


Adam Doleac

Singer-songwriter who flips between gentle blanket-on-tailgate romance and radio-friendly pop tracks. Sip and sway music with soothing vocals.


This year there are some changes to how the town square works but in short:

If you have an arena ticket you can head into all the extra stages except the paid shows (Bluebird Café events and After Parties). This includes the large Radio 2 Stage which hosts some higher profile acts, and the Saloon above All Bar One for a more intimate vibe shows, getting up close and personal.

If you’ve haven’t got tickets, there are three free stages The Big Entrance, The Icon and the Wayside stages. These will host a mix of Nashville and UK up-and-coming artists.

This year there is also a mysterious ‘Barrelhouse stage’ accessed through the town square, which you’ll apparently need tickets for. We’re still chasing news of the promised daytime shopper passes to allow non ticket holders into the food stalls and Cowboy boot stalls. But the Barrelhouse is also hosting some evening shows to run during the main arena times, the time when festival stage music used to stop and non-ticket holders previously had to disappear into the pub.

Do say hey if you spot is out,


*Thanks to our pals Jo & Lyns for coining the term Harmogasm!

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