Music

Orville Peck Signs With Warner Records, Announces Willie Nelson Collaboration

Country artist Orville Peck has signed with Warner Records – and has already teased new music on the way. 

I was ready for a change,” Peck tells Billboard. “I spent most of last year making several huge changes to all aspects of my life – my career being just one of them. I was ready for a clean start.”

Today (April 1), Peck announced his first release on the label: a collaboration with Willie Nelson. The pair will duet on a cover of “Cowboys Are Frequently Secretly Fond of Each Other,” a song originally released in 1981 by Latin country artist Ned Sublette and covered by Nelson in 2006. Peck himself previously performed a rendition for SiriusXM and at his 2023 Hollywood Bowl show.

Jeff Sosnow, EVP of A&R at Warner – whom Peck calls “the GOAT” – tells Billboard he met Peck a few years ago and was taken “not only by his musical acumen and knowledge, but also his sense of purpose, ambition and curation of his own world, which all extends from the music.”

“It’s rare to come across an artist who checks so many necessary boxes for a path to success – great songs, singular voice, curation of overall aesthetic and visuals, ambition, communication and work ethic. With [what’s ahead], we have a real opportunity to fortify and grow Orville’s base and reach.”

In 2019, Peck released his debut album Pony on Sub Pop. The following year, in 2020, he signed with Columbia and released his major label debut EP Show Pony. Two more EPs followed in 2022 leading up to his second full-length that August, Bronco

“I was drawn to Warner because of their unique emphasis on their artists,” says Peck. “It may seem like it should be the standard but more and more, the music industry invests less and less in artists.” He says in addition to Sosnow being “a genuine fan of music,” he has “great respect” for Warner CEO and co-chairman Aaron Bay-Schuck. “They have helped me to feel so motivated,” he adds.

Currently, Warner is on a hot streak with its superstars and emerging talent alike. Next month (on May 3), Dua Lipa will release her anticipated album Radical Optimism, while Zach Bryan is currently playing to sold-out arenas on his The Quittin Time Tour. Plus, rising acts like Teddy Swims and Benson Boone occupied the Hot 100’s top two slots last week with “Lose Control” and “Beautiful Things,” respectively.

“The last five years have proven Warner has the patience and ingenuity to work with real artists with vision and songs and grow with them,” says Sosnow. “The structure of the company has put us in a unique place where we do indeed have a special sauce.”

Peck is signed to Brandon Creed’s Good World Management, and is managed by Creed along with Dani Russin and Anika Capozza. The firm says: “Warner has been in Orville’s corner for many years and when the moment arose to work together, they immediately seized the opportunity with incredible support and enthusiasm…We are so excited for this new partnership and couldn’t be more thrilled to be working with them.”

As Peck says, this next chapter can be defined by “evolution and exploration. I have honestly never felt so excited about my career before.”

Adds Sosnow: “The possibilities are really limitless for Orville. He is a generational talent.”

Orville Peck
Orville Peck

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