If there is one thing that you can say about Central Kentucky with 100% certainty, it is that country music is King. So it should be no surprise, that Alan Jackson kicked off his latest tour at Rupp Arena. Tagging along on this tour, is former American Idol runner-up and fellow Georgian Lauren Alaina.
Rupp Arena was booming as early as 5pm and that’s awesome. Why? Because the local iHeart Media station, WBUL, partners up with a local Watering Hole, Austin City Saloon, to bring you a pre-show in the lobby of Rupp Arena. Together it is called the Austin City Saloon Sound Stage and on this night, one of our favorite local boys, Tyler Booth, occupied the stage.
On a chilly Sunday evening, I got the chance to do one of my favorite things on Earth. I got to see one of the many talented performers that our great Commonwealth has produced, back home here in Kentucky. Dwight Yoakam played to a sold-out crowd at the beautiful Paramount Arts Center in Ashland, KY.
This was my first trip to the Paramount and it was also my first time seeing Dwight Yoakam. Neither would disappoint on this night. The Paramount is a beautifully preserved theater. It’s like walking back in time to a 1930’s era “Movie House”. It’s a bit art deco with beautiful murals adorning the walls and ceilings. It’s also home to the friendliest staff that I’ve ever worked with. They truly made me feel at home. (more…)
After a week of sub-freezing and sometimes subzero temperatures this day all though cloudy was nice in comparison. It was about to get a lot better. Memphis Tennessee’s own Southern Avenue was making a stop at the Appalshop Theater in Whitesburg.
If you haven’t heard of Southern Avenue you need to correct that in a hurry. Tierinii Jackson, Ori Naftaly, Tikyra Jackson, Jeremy Powell and Gage Markey put on a high energy show and Tierinii can sing! Everyone in attendance knew they were in for a treat with the first notes of “Steady Beats” then “It’s Gonna Be Alright” if you weren’t hooked by then there’s something wrong with you!
For the second year in a row, we’ve celebrated the New Year at my personal favorite venue on the planet, the Louisville Palace. Last year, we rocked our way into 2017 with Southern Rockers, Blackberry Smoke. That was a truly fantastic night of fun, but on an absolutely frigid Sunday night, Church was held at the Louisville Palace.
The War & Treaty kicked off the night. I scanned a couple of tracks online before the show, but with the hectic schedule of the holidays, I was really going into their set blindly. In hindsight, that probably wasn’t my best move, but after the fact, I wouldn’t change a thing. Why? Glad you asked. Have you ever received a totally unexpected gift that caused a huge cheesy grin that you simply couldn’t wipe off your face for no amount of money? Good. Now you exactly how I felt the moment the husband and wife duo opened their mouths. (more…)
For a long time, Lexington, KY’s music scene languished, seemingly never able to realize it’s identity and enjoy the talents of those in this area. There were spurts that gave it life, but it seemed that no one knew what could be done to bring everyone together. In the last 15 years, the scene has seen some amazing musicians, many of which picked up and left to make their mark elsewhere. The loss of the Dame certainly set back the scene for years, but right now the scene is vibrant and booming.
Sure some venues have survived and even thrived, but it’s the last five years that has built a community that really supports artists. Maybe it’s all the local craft beers. Maybe it’s the plethora of venues we have once again. Maybe it’s just a shift in culture. Maybe it’s the success of so many great Kentucky artists that rekindled a spark for live music. Or maybe it’s just that Lexington found its’ identity. Craft beer, bourbon and venues that know their audience have all helped build it up, but at its core, I feel it’s the talent that has grown immensely. The music is now its own force to be reckoned with and artists like Sundy Best have brought people together to be a part of something bigger than themselves.
The holidays have a different effect on many. For some, it’s a joyous season. For others, it can be really emotional. No matter your view of the season, it’s always a time to reflect on those you love.
If you’re feeling a bit like the Grinch, the small Eastern Kentucky town of Prestonsburg hosts the perfect remedy to kicking your Holiday Spirit into high gear. Bille Jean Osborne’s Kentucky Opry Christmas show has something for everyone. You can have your photo taken with the Grinch and Cindy Lou Who. Or maybe you’d like to set on Santa’s knee at the top of the stairs, riding the slide back to the bottom, ala the classic movie “A Christmas Story”. We don’t suggest asking for a Red Ryder BB Gun though, we all know how that will end, “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid”! (more…)
I’ve got an admission to make. Tyler Childers has blossomed into a genuine star and he has done so, right under my nose. I ran UnsungMelody.Com for years, but stepped away to ready my son for college. In that nearly two year span, Tyler and his band, The Food Stamps, have toured relentlessly and built a huge underground following.
Now, I wasn’t totally oblivious to him, we did manage to snap a photo of him at the one and only “Buckle Up Fest” held in Cincinnati. (You can see that coverage here.) BUT, until I began Capture Kentucky back in April of this year, he had slipped off my radar.
As I began researching for my coverage of the 2017 edition of The Moonshiner’s Ball, I rediscovered Tyler with a little nudging from another photographer, Jennifer Buckler. She assured me that Tyler was a do-not-miss performance and I’m forever grateful to her for that. (more…)
I made the trip North on Sunday night to meet up with one of my favorite photographers. Mike Howard joined me at the BB&T Arena in Highland Heights, KY. Which is located on the campus of Northern Kentucky University. We convened there to witness a legendary band with one of the most influential voices in the rock and metal world. I’m talking of course about A Perfect Circle and Maynard James Keenan. Maynard is also the voice of Tool and Puscifer.
Maynard’s involvement in Tool is actually how A Perfect Circle became what it is today. Founder Billy Howerdel was on tour as a guitar tech where they quickly became friends. Eventually, Billy played Maynard some of his songs. Maynard offered his vocal services if Billy wanted. After some time and thoughts, Billy finally took Maynard up on his offer and A Perfect Circle was born. The rest of the band has always been comprised of seasoned musicians that have rotated over time. On this particular tour, bassist Matt McJunkins, Guitarist/Keyboardist James Iha, and drummer Josh Friedl rounded out the lineup.
What’s a good way to spend a Monday evening in Eastern Kentucky? Glad you asked! You hop in your vehicle (a pickup truck in my case) and make the beautiful drive along Highway 80 to the MAC in Prestonsburg for a night with Gov’t Mule.
It’s about an hour drive for me, but this time of year it’s an even more beautiful drive than normal, as the leaves are beginning to show what’s in store in the coming days. No opening act tonight, just straight into Gov’t Mule and you certainly didn’t hear one single complaint.
Gov’t Mule is made up of Warren Haynes, Matt Abts, Danny Louis and Jorgen Carlsson. I’m guessing that if you are reading this review you know who Gov’t Mule is, but for those that might not here’s a bit of history. Warren Haynes was in The Allman Brothers Band when he formed Gov’t Mule as a side project in 1994. In June of this year, they released their 10th studio album “Revolution Come…Revolution Go” and started touring in support of it soon after.