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Bailey Zimmerman on How His Heartbreak Anthems Conquered Country Radio, Broke Streaming Records and Brought Him to Stagecoach’s Door

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Chris Willman Senior Music Writer and Chief Music Critic When the lineup for the 2024 Stagecoach Festival was announced earlier this month, Bailey Zimmerman’s name was up there on the second line, right beneath Morgan Wallen’s.

It represented a heady move up into the big leagues (and big fonts) for a 23-year-old who had only the most scant awareness that there was such a thing as a country music industry a few short years ago.

Now, he’s had some of the biggest songs of the past year, not just in the country realm but on the all-genre charts, including the still-rising “Religiously,” the title song of his debut album.

When “Religiously: The Album” came out in May, its first week won Zimmerman credit for having the biggest streaming debut album of the year in any genre up to that point in 2023, along with, not incidentally, the best streaming bow for any debut country album, ever.

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