A new year brings with it a renewed sense of hope, promise and resolve, both personally and professionally. 2019 could be the year for any number of up-and-coming artists -- but The Boot staff is placing bets on these men, women and groups.

The Boot's 2019 Artists to Watch are a diverse group: Some lean to the poppy side of country; others are as traditional-sounding as they come. They all, though, have cultivated a style and sound that is all their own, and they're demanding fans' attention.

Some of these acts, readers may know: Maybe you've heard an artist's debut single on the radio or in a playlist; perhaps you're seen one of them live in a small venue, or as an opening act on a superstar's tour. That's how we found them, too -- that and listening to industry and online buzz -- and we're hoping you're ready to learn more about them. And if you're unfamiliar with any of these acts, we're ready to help you discover a new favorite.

We'll be introducing our 2019 Artists to Watch through early February. Keep an eye on this space to get to know them -- and get ready to hear plenty from them throughout 2019.