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Bailey Zimmerman

Bailey Zimmerman

Blessed with a raspy, gravel-etched voice, Bailey Zimmerman occupies a place somewhere between heartland rock and brooding, burly contemporary country. His style and arrangements are unadorned, reflecting the working-class background of his small-town Illinois background, yet his taste for slow-moving minor chords -- evident on his breakthrough 2022 single "Fall in Love," along with its successor "Rock and a Hard Place" -- recall Jason Aldean and Cole Swindell, a trait that was showcased on his full-length debut, Religiously. The Album., released in May of 2023.

A native of Louisville, Illinois, Bailey Zimmerman is the son of a trucking business owner. He learned country music from his father and hard rock through his mother. When he was 16, he entered the workforce by landing a job at a meat processing plant, the first in a series of blue-collar jobs. In his spare time, he channeled his no-nonsense sensibility into his rock-inflected country songs, eventually amassing a following online and through social media.

"Never Comin' Home" was his first single in 2021, followed by "Small Town Crazy" at the end of the year. "Fall in Love" became a viral sensation early in 2022, leading to Warner Music Nashville signing him to their roster that April. The single "Rock and a Hard Place" -- which also was simultaneously released on an identically titled EP -- followed shortly afterward. "Where It Ends" and "Never Leave" both appeared prior to the October 2022 release of Leave the Light On, an EP that featured his then-current singles. "Where It Ends," "Rock and a Hard Place," and "Fall" also anchored his full-length debut, Religiously. The Album., which appeared in May 2023 and cracked the Top Ten of both the Top Country Albums and Billboard 200 charts. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

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