Robert Ellis Expands Beyond Country Roots

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At first glance, singer-songwriter Robert Ellis' decision to move last November from Houston to Nashville didn't seem surprising.

The 24-year-old Texas native, who honed his chops as a younger artist during a weekly classic country showcase called "Whiskey Wednesday," had spent the better part of the last two years on the road with bands such as the Alabama Shakes, Old Crow Medicine Show and the Old 97's. With a rich croon and charismatic onstage persona, Ellis appeared to be songwriter who could follow in George Jones' or Kris Kristofferson's footsteps.