Warner Music Nashville's Frankie Ballard returns with his third studio album El Rio, one of Rolling Stone's "35 Most Anticipated Country Albums of 2016." Recorded at the famed Sonic Ranch, just south of El Paso in Tornillo, TX, Ballard, band, and producer Marshall Altman left the comfort of Nashville, TN in exchange for the opportunity to immerse themselves 24/7 creating this unique and fresh album. "I'm very proud of the work Marshall and I did on El Rio," says Ballard. "We busted our ass to be better. It's been a spiritual journey. This album has already changed my life, and nobody's heard it yet."
The album's debut single, "It All Started With A Beer," tells the story of a relationship that's grown over time despite the bumps life offers along the way. "On the surface, it's a love story about two folks meeting in a bar and having a beer," says Ballard of the track. "From there, the relationship blossomed into something long lasting and now they're looking back, going, 'Man, look at this great relationship we got, and it started so simply, with just a beer.' So many people can relate to the idea. But also, one of the deeper meanings of that song is sometimes the biggest shit that happens to you in life doesn't start in a big way. That makes me hopeful for the future."
Ballard's previous album, Sunshine & Whiskey, produced three consecutive No. 1 singles – the platinum-certified "Sunshine & Whiskey," the gold-certified "Helluva Life," and one of the Top 3 Billboard Country Airplay songs of 2015, "Young & Crazy."