Granger Smith is going to move to the other side of the microphone soon. Early next year, the country star will begin as the host of After MidNite on Premiere Networks.

Smith is no stranger to talking for a living. Aside from being on stage at concerts across the country as a performer, he also hosts his own podcast called the Granger Smith Podcast. His family is also featured on their YouTube vlog series, The Smiths.

The "Backroad Song" singer will become After MidNite's third host. Blair Garner founded the show in 1993 and hosted until 2013, while Cody Alan took over in 2014 and will step down on Dec. 31 of this year. Smith will be behind the mic starting in January 2022.

Get our free mobile app

Smith's alter ego, Earl Dibbles Jr., is likely to make appearances, as well. The character is a staple at Smith's shows, and his catchphrase, "Yee Yee," has even become its own brand. The apparel and lifestyle brand — and now, beef jerky label — is family-owned and operated with the help of Smith's brothers, Tyler and Parker.

"I’m incredibly honored to take the reins of After MidNite!" Smith says. "The unique opportunity to bring great music and speak to such a wide variety of listeners from 12 AM to 6 AM can have a profound impact on people’s lives and that responsibility is not lost on me."

Per Billboard, After MidNite has 200 affiliates. The show was produced in partnership with CMT for seven years, but the next chapter will not include the music video channel's network. CMT Radio Live is being put on hiatus, pending a re-branding.

Top Country Songs of 2021, Ranked

You'll find much more than just the Top 10 Country Songs of 2021 on this list. Enjoy the 21 best country songs of the year, based on Taste of Country staff and country music fan opinion, plus commercial data (sales, streaming, airplay).

To be considered, the song must have been released in 2021 or have actively charted for a portion of the year (see "Wine, Beer, Whiskey"). New artists including Lainey Wilson, Larry Fleet and Morgan Wade crack the top songs list, while hitmakers including Thomas Rhett, Jason Aldean and Luke Combs make the Top 10.

Let us know your favorite song of 2021 on Twitter, or email us at staff@tasteofcountry.com.