The Levitt AMP Whitesburg Music Series kicked off on May 31st with Dave Adkins and Larry Cordle. A little history about the Levitt AMP Music Series can be found here https://grant.levittamp.org/
The Levitt AMP Music Series is a 10-week concert series with different genres of music performed each week, all concerts are free to the public. The venue had to be an underused public space. Whitesburg’s space is the Mountain Heritage stage in downtown Whitesburg. The stage used during the Mountain Heritage fall festival, but it is rarely used any other time of the year. In all, there were 15 grants awarded this year, with Whitesburg being the smallest community to receive a grant. The impressive thing about that is Whitesburg was also number one in the online voting across the country. A quick look at the map on the Levitt AMP website shows that Kentucky has three communities that received these grants, which also the most across the country. That shouldn’t be surprising with the amount of musical talent that has come out of Kentucky in recent years.
Bluegrass was the genre represented for the first show. Whitesburg’s own Sunrise Ridge got this rainy night underway with right at an hour long set. Included in their set were original tunes with some very well done covers, including my personal favorite “You’ll Never Leave Harlan Alive”, which was written by Darrell Scott, who was born in London, KY. I’ve heard Sunrise Ridge cover that song a couple times now and it gets better every time I hear it.
If you live in Kentucky, you need to be paying close attention to the musical community. Why? Well, I’m glad you asked. There has likely never been a time where Kentucky has possessed more talent than she does right now. Seriously. Allow me to use Magnolia Boulevard as a shining example for ya.
Kentucky shines with artists like Chris Stapleton, Sturgill Simpson, Black Stone Cherry and Tyler Childers at the top of their games while our legends continue to thrive. Loretta Lynn, Dwight Yoakam, Ricky Skaggs, The Kentucky Headhunters and many more are still performing to large crowds all over the world. While that’s truly wonderful, I want you to focus more on the artists still trying to get to their levels. Remember, every single musician on this planet was once a local musician. (more…)
The music industry is a very strange place most of the time. Long gone are the days of record labels signing a young band or artist to a developmental deal. Most labels want to get their hands on an already established and somewhat successful artist that way it is a quick way to recoup the funds it takes to break an emerging artist.
It’s definitely a sound business decision for them, but the industry has changed tremendously over the past few years and the days of taking chances on signing folks to a developmental deal are long gone. Few folks are actually good enough to cut through all the clutter of the bands and artists that have been empowered by technology in this day and age. With that clutter, being an independent artist becomes even more difficult. That’s one aspect of what makes Tyler Childers such an amazing anomaly. He is a once in a generation talent as far as we’re concerned around here, but it’s his journey that is so remarkable. (more…)
This was a perfect spring day to make my first trip to Capone’s in Johnson City, TN for Black Stone Cherry. I am sure it will not be my last! Great venue!
I had seen Black Stone Cherry a couple times, but hadn’t seen their opener for tonight Blacktop Mojo. A 5 piece band out of Texas, Blacktop Mojo’s music was a great fit to open for BSC. Their Texas southern rock was just what this big crowd at Capone’s needed. Pulling songs from both of their albums Burn The Ships and I Am, tracks like “Burn The Ships” “Where The Wind Blows” and “Back Home” and a cover that was instantly recognizable from the first notes, Aerosmith’s “Dream On”. A lot of people have tried to cover “Dream On” with no success but these guys hit the mark! The video has over 4 million views on YouTube. Give Blacktop Mojo a try, I think you will like them! (more…)
I want to start this review with a huge thank you to my fellow Kentuckians. Lexington in particular, has never really been known as a “metal community.” In all honesty, it still isn’t, but Saturday night at the Manchester Music Hall, you folks delivered like I’ve never experienced you in roughly 18 years of going to concerts.
First, you sold-out Manchester Music Hall. Second, I saw ZERO fights despite massive amounts of liquid courage being consumed. As a whole, the night was a wet, sweaty, loud celebration of four great bands doing their best to deliver a show like no other.
Did y’all succeed in making a fun and loving atmosphere for the bands? I say, yes. Yes we did. So much so that Clutch frontman Neil Fallon said, “You guys are making this too easy.” Referring to the participation and sheer enjoyment that was had by all. So good on you, Central Kentucky. I’m super proud of ya! (more…)
I always try to write a review by sharing a unique viewpoint. It may be a bit of history about an artist, a venue or even a personal experience that I share with you. The story that I want to tell in this review will contain all three-prongs of the above description. So I want to warn you, this article will be lengthy and personal. Stay with me, I think you’ll enjoy.
Several years ago, we’ll call it the MySpace Age, I was the national talent buyer at the old A1A Concert Hall in Lexington. I spent many hours searching for bands on MySpace. The venue’s capacity was only 500, so I really had to find bands that I felt had a bright future. Bands on the verge of breaking out of their hometown market and onto the national scene. During that time, I happened upon a band that I really enjoyed. Their name was Black Summer Crush. I reached out to them and we had a few exchanges about where they were in their careers and if they’d be touring anytime soon. At that time, they were only doing a few California shows. As life often does, we drifted our separate ways and MySpace got Facebooked. (more…)
The I Love The 90’s tour has been crisscrossing the country for the last couple years with a revolving line-up of 90’s hitmakers. The line up in Corbin had Young MC opening and Salt-N-Pepa closing with A LOT of chart-topping music from 4 other big name artist in between. Be sure and check out my photo gallery at the end of this article! (more…)
Sunday nights are usually my rest night for the week. Sometimes though, the music draws me away from my slumber. On this night, two bands drew me in. With the weather being bi-polar, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but the threat of a little of the white stuff wasn’t gonna get in my way of seeing Mr. JD Simo and his band, aptly named SIMO.
First up, let’s talk about some local kids that will absolutely blow your mind. The kids in Sour Cream have music in their bones. As Black Stone Cherry put it, “It’s In My Blood”, that’s definitely the case for these 15-year old kids. A classic power trio, two of these young men are the Grandsons of The Kentucky Headhunters Greg Martin. Sherri McGee’s son, Harlan Cecil wields the ax, while Jon McGee’s son, also named Jon McGee, lays down the beats while Colby Grant holds the groove low and steady on the bass. (more…)
Cole Swindell brought his “Reason To Drink” tour To Corbin Kentucky and judging from the amount of beer I saw being consumed, there were plenty of reasons to drink!!
Most people that know me would consider me a rock n roll guy and I am but I’m also a fan of live music. So when the opportunity presented itself to cover this show I jumped at it. One thing I’ve learned about these big country tours is they put on one helluva show! Big stages, big productions, big video screens and some serious lights! All that makes for great photo opportunities and Cole Swindell, Chris Janson, Lauren Alaina took full advantage of all that was provided to them! (more…)
It’s springtime in the Bluegrass, 60 degrees one day and snow the next. So as I’m traveling along Highway 80 to the Mountain Arts Center you’ll see evidence of spring and winter, snow in places and fruit trees blooming. That’s Kentucky weather for you. Tonight wasn’t about weather, it was about two homegrown Eastern Kentucky singers performing together at the MAC. What a performance it was!
Tyler Booth is a name that everyone in this area