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According to an age-old cliché, getting knocked down ain’t what matters – it’s how you get up, and Sony Music Nashville’s Nate Smith knows firsthand. With a personal journey scarred by disaster, but defined by revival, he could have stayed down multiple times through life, and instead grew into something else entirely: A beacon of country-music hope.

Featuring a mix of gritty backwoods soul, rock ‘n’ roll swagger and velvet-thunder vocals, Smith is a Nashville artist with a unique connection to life’s inner tug of war. And with his first batch of major-label music, he’s aiming to tip the scales once and for all.

“I just feel lucky that I get to be the messenger for these songs,” says the rising singer-songwriter. “I’m not here to be cool or anything like that. It’s literally just to hit people in the heart.”

NATE SMITH