It seemed, at first, that country singer Sam Hunt was destined for football. He played at Middle Tennessee State University for a year, before transferring to the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
But it was what happened after practice that formed his future: Hunt learned how to play the guitar. Even though he would go on to try out for the Kansas City Chiefs, he ultimately wanted to pursue a career in music.
At first, Hunt started out by writing for artists such as Kenny Chesney and Reba McEntire, in between independently releasing his own music.
His songs eventually caught the ear of MCA Nashville, which signed him in 2014. Later that year, he released the EP X2C, and followed it closely with the debut studio album Montevallo.
Hunt's first single hit big on country radio. 'Leave the Night On' topped the Country Airplay chart and marked the first of four songs to reach that spot. The achievement meant he became the first male country star to have four songs from their debut studio album reach No. 1 on the Country Airplay chart.
Hunt also won New Artist of the Year at the Americana Music Awards in 2015, and was nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammys in 2016. His sophomore album Southside arrived in 2020.