With shine-eyed acoustic guitar and clear-hearted vocal harmonies, sharp-dressed Old Pueblo duo Ryanhood (Cameron Hood and Ryan Green) is an easy listen. Yet through so much sweetness, they sidestep the maudlin and oversentimentality (and blandness!) by tearing a page from the Simon & Garfunkel hookbook and including the occasional minor, descending progression. Even their most mirthful tunes are tinged with melancholy—they "don't want this moment to end," worrying over joy's loss as it's still waxing. Ryanhood captures inevitable shadows thrown by so much Arizona sunshine.
2. Leila Lopez
3. Sabra Faulk