Photo Credit: Heidi Smith

NASHVILLE, TN (April 2, 2021) – Opry Entertainment has tapped PAYTON SMITH as Artist in Residence over the next few months at Ole Red Nashville. The 21-year-old Louisiana native will take the stage every Wednesday from April 7 through June 30 – except April 14 – beginning at 8:00P CT. The first hour will be livestreamed via RIFF with the second hour featuring surprise appearances. Guests are invited to dine and watch the show live at Ole Red Nashville. No tickets are required. Ole Red upholds enhanced safety measures at every guest and staff touch point to ensure everyone’s experience is safe and fun. To review Ole Red’s updated COVID-19 safety protocols, please visit

“Playing live music is something I thrive on…the connection, the passion, the energy. And after a year where live music was essentially shut down, I am beyond excited to announce this residency with Ole Red. There’s going to be so many new songs, cool moments with fans and introductions to special guests that will happen on that stage. Stay tuned! Nashville is the home of Country music, and I can’t think of a better place to get this show ‘back on the road’ soon!” expresses Payton.

“Ole Red is always excited to support great up and coming talent such as Payton Smith, and we are looking forward to being a part of his story here at Ole Red Nashville,” said Dolly Chandler, Senior Talent Buyer – Opry Entertainment Group.  

The upcoming sets will allow the self-taught guitarist to highlight recent creative efforts he penned such as “Sounds Like A Good Time” alongside Bart Butler and Corey Crowder as well as “I’m Fine” with Ronnie Bowman and Daniel Fernandez – out now via Big Machine Records.. With their differing approaches to stages of romantic relationships, Payton sings of the highs and lows in life. 

“I love how different each of these songs are. ‘I’m Fine’ plays on that classic response from people, and most of us can relate to not being ‘fine’ yet still trying to play cover up. Especially when you’ve run into that person that you used to be with while they are out on the town with friends or on a date and they ask, ‘how have you been?” Payton continues. “’Sounds Like a Good Time’ is literally about taking advantage of a moment to paint the town. The melody, the guitar solos and the lyrics are all about breaking free of whatever is going on in your world to have a great time and focus on the ‘now’.” 

The new music follows the release of “This Ain’t That Song” and “What It Meant To Lose You” – the accompanying music video features TikTok phenom Jay Sage aka @imthejay. Naming Payton to their Next Big Thing Class of 2021, MusicRow raved his self-titled EP “shows off a mix of solid songs, youthful charm and his killer skills as a multi-instrumentalist.” Playing every part on each track just like his favorite guitar slingers across the sonic landscape, Payton’s music has amassed over 36 million streams worldwide. Certain that his peers have equally varied musical tastes, the rising star brings a hybrid of his influences to the genre – every bit as much a fan of Pearl Jam and John Mayer as he is Clint Black and George Strait. With his It Started With A Song series Payton has covered some of the artists who have indirectly shaped his sound and showmanship.  CMT heralded him a 2020/2021 Listen Up artist while Taste of Country enlisted Payton as one of 2020’s Hottest Country Artists Under 25.

As the pandemic derailed touring plans with Chris Young, Payton lent his talents to supporting others. He has raised funds (and personally contributed) with livestream events for the East Tennessee Children’s Hospital’s in partnership with University of Tennessee student run VOLthon and Heart Strings for Hope benefitting MultiCare Inland Northwest Foundation and MusiCares®, a charity founded by the Recording Academy. Evident with his output of fresh tracks and Payton’s heart for community, Taste of Country praised his “raw talent, authenticity and strong work ethic are bound to bring him country music success for many, many years.”

His video series Outdoors with Payton uncovers his personality and upbringing with family joining the adventures – Explore episodes now. Visit and follow @thepaytonsmith on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/TikTok.