After Opry Debut, Houston’s Upbeat Country-Music Starlet Julia Cole Eyes Streaming Milestone

After Opry Debut, Houston’s Upbeat Country-Music Starlet Julia Cole Eyes Streaming Milestone

Earlier this month Houston-raised singer Julia Cole my her debut at Nashville's famed Grand Ole Opry. (Photo by Chris Hollo)

KNOWN FOR HER rhythm and attitude, rising recording artist Julia Cole joined the elite circle of talent that includes legends such as Johnny Cash and Loretta Lynn earlier this month in Nashville. She performed in the Grand Ole Opry to a full house.


“It felt like a wedding, it was so beautiful and epic,” says Cole, who grew up in north Houston. “There were flowers everywhere, and relatives traveled far to see the performance.” She wore a sparkling floor-length gown embellished with “upcycled” fabric from her late grandfather’s western-style shirt and jewelry made from the shirt’s pearl snaps.

In addition to performing “White Pearls,” a tribute to fearless mothers, Cole also performed her streaming hit “Thank God We Broke Up,” which was rush-released in April after her TikTok tease exploded. The single is on Cole’s new Whole ‘Nother Margarita EP, and the video has been added to CMT rotation.

She’s on track to reach 100 million music streams by fall, thanks to her honest, raw, often-humorous songs that encourage self-worth. Her breakup anthems take a glass-half-full approach to dodging a bad relationship bullet, while her love songs inspire millions to pull their special someone even closer.

Cole got her start by singing the anthem before her Klein High School volleyball games, which led to performing at NFL, MLB, NASCAR and ESPN events. An avid soccer player since childhood, she credits athletics for her team-player mindset and determination. As a women’s athletics advocate, she has fundraised for women’s sports initiatives for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Middle Tennessee. She is an ambassador for Mizuno Athletic Wear, who uses Cole’s song “Honey Child” in its women’s empowerment campaign.

“I got my sound from all the different influences in Houston, but mostly in the locker room where I was introduced to many kinds of music from diverse teammates who came from various places,” says Cole. The compassionate singer loves lyrics that are empowering to women and that create confidence and writes about things she’s going through in her personal life. “But I also like to move, dance and just have fun performing,” she says.

“It has been a whirlwind of things I couldn’t have guessed would be happening,” says Cole, “like my streams going to 100 million, my first song getting on Sirius XM The Highway, and the Opry invitation.” (Photo by Alejandro Medina III)

At the Opry, Cole performed her song “White Pearls,” a tribute to fearless mothers, and her new streaming hit “Thank God We Broke Up.” (Photo by Chris Hollo)

Cole’s career exploded after meeting songwriter Chuck Cannon in Houston who encouraged her to move to Nashville and learn the biz. “He and his late wife Lari took me under their wing, showed me a publishing opportunity and helped me navigate all my first deals,” says Cole.

The year 2022 is big. “It has been a whirlwind of things I couldn’t have guessed would be happening, like my streams going to 100 million, my first song getting on Sirius XM The Highway, and the Opry invitation.” Now she’s focused on putting out a song every week, a duet, and planning a full album. She’s hosting upcoming TV series, The Ultimate Fanfeston Circle TV debuting in 2023 about attending music festivals around the country.

A few pinnacle moments for Cole would be a No. 1 on country radio, a CMA award, an ACM award, and a Grammy. “I grew up watching my idols like Kelly Clarkson, Whitney Houston and Steve Perry of Journey winning these prestigious awards.” Cole adds: “Another idol is Dolly Parton for her brilliant business sense.”

Style
With Expertise in Blondes, Extensions and More, the Janelle Alexis Team Is a Go-To Salon

YOU CAN'T LIMIT Janelle to one title – Hairdresser. Her career and business has been established and built on a strong foundation. Using her two business degrees + one more in-process, this enables Janelle and the team to deliver not only a customer-focused experience, but a foundationally solid business. There is much more than meets the eye, and in sharing a little bit about Janelle, she was not only an international hair extension educator for over 14 years, but brings extensive expertise to blondes. She rounds this out with her previously launched namesake cosmetic line, which is a perfect complement to her belief that “Beauty is our Business”.

Keep ReadingShow less

AS WE PRODUCE our second annual “Cool 100” list, we’re reminded of our thoughts as we debuted this feature last year. We acknowledged that deciding who and what is cool is not only a moving target but also entirely subjective. And that attempting to “rank” the coolest people in Houston is a fool’s errand, one that will leave us immediately open to criticism. “You think she is cooler than him? You included this person?! You left off that one!?"

Keep ReadingShow less
People + Places

The gallerist's beloved dog Tuta, Anya Tish, and artist Adela Andea with Anya

LAST THURSDAY, DAWN Ohmer, gallery director of Anya Tish Gallery, called to tell me Anya died on June 12 in her hometown of Kraków, Poland. It was a tearful call, the kind of call I am resigned to receiving more often as I get older. For many of us in Houston’s art community — gallery owners, artists, collectors, and arts writers — the news was sudden and unexpected. Death is a look away from rationality, and it is hard to imagine someone you cared for and who cared about you no longer being present physically, in the flesh, in the here and now.

Keep ReadingShow less
Art + Entertainment