Best Of Dallas

The Best New Music in Dallas, June 2016: Maren Morris, Sam Lao & More

Six Shooter is a recurring feature where we highlight six new releases by North Texas-based musicians.

Well July is here and there are a ton of music to look forward to. But June featured a host of great new releases from North Texas artists. We didn't forget, of course, which is why — with the holiday hot dog hangovers now (hopefully) behind us, we're here to showcase the best new music to be released last month.

Maren Morris – Hero

As much as 2015 was the year of Leon Bridges, 2016 is the year of Maren Morris. Her debut studio album Hero reached No. 1 on the Billboard Country charts off the strength of the single “My Church,” critical acclaim across the country and a standout week at South By Southwest. On the album, released June 3, the 26-year-old singer balances country tunes with pop sensibilities and strings together 11 tracks that show off her songwriting and wide-ranging vocals.

Sam Lao – “Pineapple”

Last week, we voted Sam Lao’s SPCTRM the best DFW album of the year (so far), so it’s no surprise that the recently released music video for “Pineapple” is one of the best releases of the month, too. The Jeremy Biggers-directed video features beautifully vibrant pastels as the backdrop for Lao’s empowering anthem in which she channels her inner goddess, brushes off the thirsty and claps back against cat-calling, as she told Paper Magazine.

The Dividends - Far From Away Vol. 1

Singer-songwriter Sarah Jaffe and super producer Symbolyc One combined their wondrous abilities to form the Dividends. The songs they’ve teased from the new project are simple, yet captivating R&B tracks that perfectly complement Jaffe’s delicate voice while putting her songwriting on display. Unfortunately the release is cassette/USB only and by now may be tough to get a hold of, but if or when you do it will be worth it.

Dorrough - Six 3 EP

This nine-track EP features “Japanese” and “Yeah Yeah,” two songs you’ve probably already heard by now considering the heavy radio play they’ve received in the city. More exciting is the collaboration with Fort Worth’s burgeoning rap star Go Yayo on “Prince From the '80s.” It’s a sign of the unity in the hip-hop scene that many have been longing for. “My Coterie” is a never-before-heard track that deserves a few spins, as well as the chopped and screwed “Yeah Yeah” by the man himself, DJ Michael Watts.

Go Yayo - WFAA ABC Response

This track from Fort Worth’s hottest rapper is a response to a news story about him on WFAA. The segment highlights parents’ and teachers’ negative reactions to the rough-and-tumble rapper’s unannounced visit to a middle school pep rally for STAAR, the state’s assessment test in May. The report shamed Go Yayo for the content of his music and quoted disappointed school officials and parents. The song gives his side of the story, which you might imagine differs just a little bit from the on one WFAA.

The Outfit, TX – “I’m With That Too (Ft. G.U.N., Loudiene, Saint Clair and Trap Mama)”

The Outfit, TX have released a stunning amount of high-quality tracks this year, but “I’m With That Too” is the best of the batch. This posse cut featuring a gang of the city’s brightest underground stars is a high-energy, hype-inducing track that reinforces the fact that the trio make great facilitators of the underground hip-hop scene in the city. "I'm With That Too" also ramps up the anticipation for the release of their upcoming Green Lights: Everythang Goin’ EP.

Extra Ammo:

Doug Burr – “Country Girls In Dresses”

Gensu Dean – “The Meek”

Buffalo Black – “Mega Man”

Pageantry – "Vicious Wishes" 

Fat Pimp – “Young Finesser”

Charley Crockett – In The Night

Loudiene – “Dirty World”

Danny Cainco – “Wya”

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Mikel Galicia is a trap scholar, the softest writer on the scene and his photo game is jumping out the gym. His work has been published in Sports Illustrated, ESPN and every major Dallas publication.