A native of Hannah, South Carolina, country crooner Josh Turner burst onto the scene in 2003 with the powerful "Long Black Train," a song he'd written after listening to a Hank Williams box set. Sounding like a gospel-blues tune from the '40s -- and featuring Turner's deep, rich baritone at the forefront -- "Long Black Train" wrestled with the grand themes of temptation, salvation, death, and redemption. It also earned Turner national media attention, peaking at number 13 on the country charts and paving the way for a full album, Long Black Train, which was released by MCA in 2003. The album went platinum, and was followed by a string of successful hits that would eventually earn Turner a coveted membership in the Grand Ole Opry at the age of 30.
A second release, Your Man, followed in 2006 and peaked at number two on the Billboard 200. The title track topped the country charts (and experienced an unexpected revival in 2011, when American Idol champion Scotty McCreery performed it during his audition), as did the follow-up single "Would You Go with Me." The impressive Everything Is Fine appeared in 2007, again from MCA Nashville. Turner issued his fourth album, Haywire, in 2010, with its first two singles as its opening cuts: "Why Don't We Just Dance" and "I Wouldn't Be a Man." 2012's Punching Bag debuted at number four on Billboard 200, and number one on the Top Country Albums chart on the strength of the singles "Find Me a Baby" and "Time Is Love." In 2016, Turner issued a new single, "Hometown Girl," in anticipation of his upcoming sixth studio album, which was set to be released in 2017. ~ Steve Leggett