CMT has unveiled the list of nine up-and-coming female artists named to its Next Women of Country 2019 class. Ingrid Andress, Lauren Duski, Emily Hackett, Stephanie Quayle, Tenille Townes, Leah Turner, Anna Vaus, Rachel Wammack and Lainey Wilson have all been selected for the program that supports new female acts in country music.

Karen Fairchild of Little Big Town announced the newest group of artists on Nov. 13 during an annual showcase at City Winery in Nashville. The 2019 class is a diverse mix of artists, some whom are signed to record deals, while others are working independently. Duski competed on Season 12 of The Voice and is now an independent artist, while Townes spent the summer of 2018 opening for Miranda Lambert and LBT on their collaborative Bandwagon Tour. Her new single "Somebody's Daughter" has been making waves, and the same can be said for Wammack's harrowing debut, "Damage."

Andress is one of the newest acts to Warner Music Nashville's roster, and Vaus is a Belmont University graduate who was awarded Lambert's first Women Creators scholarship in 2016. Hackett and Wilson both released attention-worthy EPs in 2018; Quayle and Turner have been working in Nashville for several years.

“Everyone says, ‘Let the best songs win,’ and we truly believe that, male or female, let the best songs win, but we do need that equal playing field,” Next Women of Country founder Leslie Fram said during the event. “We need that to enact fairness on the charts, playlists and not to have to hear there’s only one slot for a female."

CMT's Next Women of Country began in 2013. In the years since, powerhouse acts including Maren Morris, Kelsea Ballerini, Cam, Carly Pearce, Ashley McBryde and more have participated. The yearly program culminates with the CMT Next Women of Country Tour, and Cassadee Pope will serve as the headliner for 2019, with Clare Dunn and Hannah Ellis joining her on the trek.

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