8 Country Artists To Watch: Reality TV Edition!

18 May 2022 | 2:32 pm | Staff Writer

Casey Barnes, Carrie Underwood, Morgan Wallen and even Keith Urban are just some names who have graced the small screen.

From The Voice to The X Factor, Australia and American Idols, to even the Eurovision Song Contest, there’s been an overwhelming number of artists who have made their mark in country music after appearing on reality television. Casey Barnes, James Johnston, Lyn Bowtell, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Morgan Wallen, Kacey Musgraves, Lauren Alaina and even Keith Urban are just some names who have graced the small screen.

While there are many more artists we’ve come to know and love over the years, we’ve selected our favourite eight up-and-coming country artists to watch who competed on reality TV in 2022.


Kaylee Bell

Selected as part of Jessica Mauboy’s top 6 on this season of The Voice Australia, New Zealand born Kaylee Bell moved to Australia at the age of 21, where she kick started her career by winning the prestigious Toyota Star Maker award in 2013. She subsequently released her debut album, Heart First, later that year. Her extended play The Red EP and second album Silver Linings both followed in 2021. Despite her departure from the series, she has over 30 million Spotify streams and holds the reigning title of ‘Most Streamed Female Country Artist for Australasia’.

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Ella & Sienna

Selected as part of Rita Ora’s top 6 on this season of The Voice Australia, South Australian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalists, Ella & Sienna are inspired by artists like Missy Higgins and Taylor Swift, their original music brings a unique blend of modern country, folk and acoustic pop. Following several accolades, award wins and catchy singles, their latest single, Next To Mine, currently sits at #35 on the Countrytown Hot 50 Country Airplay Chart.

Lane Pittman

Lane Pittman recently secured a top two spot in Keith Urban’s team on The Voice Australia, and top eight overall in the series. The 15-year-old earned a four-chair turn when he blind auditioned with Luke Combs’ song Even Though I’m Leaving. Pittman released his self-penned debut single, My Way Over You on March 30. Produced by Steve Newton, the track features Laurie Minson on dobro, Pete Denahy on fiddle, Scott Hills on drums and James Gillard on bass.

Freddie Bailey

Freddie Bailey caught the attention of Keith Urban when he blind auditioned for this season of The Voice Australia with Urban’s latest hit single, Wild Hearts. The 17-year-old made it all the way to the battle rounds as part of Urban’s team. The two-time graduate of the CMAA Junior Academy of Country Music, has opened for the likes of Fanny Lumsden, Andrew Swift, Amber Lawrence and The Bushwackers. Bailey released two singles this year – Run and Won’t Be Long.


Currently competing on American Idol, the Tennessee native began singing at three years old with her grandfather at church and began writing her own music at nine. From a young age, she competed in singing competitions and performed at venues across the country. At 15 years old, she won the 2014 Texaco Country Showdown. She has also won several songwriting contests like “Nash Next” and the Nashville Songwriter Association International. Her five-song EP One Day charted #4 on iTunes and #2 on the iTunes country chart. 

Noah Thompson

Kentucky's Noah Thompson didn’t let people hear him sing till he was in high school. After hearing him sing, many of his peers pushed him to sing in the school’s choir and participate in talent shows. The 20-year-old country singer was working construction when his friend and co-worker Arthur signed him up for the current season of American Idol, where he auditioned with a cover of Giving You Up by Kameron Marlowe

The Sulli-Vans

The family band, comprised of country singer-songwriter Kevin and his kids KJ, daughter Cha-Cha and son Jet, appeared on The Voice: Generations Australia in early 2022. However, they’ve performed over 120 live shows since hitting the road in 2020. Their recently released LP features unique versions of much-loved Australian classics, country music and contemporary hits, such as Down Under, Coat Of Many Colours and Sounds Of Then (This Is Australia) to name a few.


Although his music releases don’t all necessarily scream ‘country’, Stefan brought spaghetti western vibes to the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest where he represented Estonia, placing 13th in the grand final. Born in Armenia, he got his big break in 2018 when he finished third in Estonia’s Eurovision preselection contest, Eesti Laul, as part of the duo VAJÉ with the song Laura (Walk with Me). He followed this up with another 3rd place finish in 2019 and made the finals again in 2020. He appeared The Masked Singer and was named Sexiest Man of the Year.