THROWDOWN COMES TO TOWN
The Country Throwdown Tour is traveling all over the United States this summer giving country music fans a lot of “bang for their buck.” There are at least twelve side stage artists and eight additional artists performing on the main stage. Throw in opportunities to meet many of the artists with personally autographed posters and CDs and it feels like a mini CMA Fest!
If I were to highlight every single performer on the Throwdown Tour my review would be very lengthy indeed and of course everyone has their favorite (myself included). I’m just going to mention those that stood out for me that day or caught my attention for some reason…
Walker Hayes caught the eye of many of the young ladies with his flashy smile, winning personality and witty songs. I’m not sure if country is ready for his rap or funk but it certainly was entertaining.
The Outlaw Stage is a bit bigger format and I eagerly anticipated seeing Jonathan Singleton and The Grove perform at this venue. Their video "Look Who's Back In Love" is currently on CMT and I enjoy their style of classic country blended with rock country and truly hope they catch a break in the near future.
Emily West is another lesser known artist on the Outlaw Stage who was stunning in both looks and ability. She reminded me of Faith Hill in many ways with her willowy figure, brown eyes, long blond hair and big voice. Emily is best known for her song "Blue Sky" which features Keith Urban on background vocals. I was also captivated by her song “Mississippi’s Crying.” This girl must have a thing for lost love and rain since both are reflected in these 2 songs.
I’d never before seen Eric Church perform so I was unprepared for his fierce intensity as an entertainer. I think it took me several minutes before my mouth closed and I began to snap photos. Goodness, this young man really gets into his music and encourages both himself and the crowd with fist pumping, shouts and exclamations. He worked up quite a sweat and had a large majority of the crowd on their feet during his entire set. Impressive.
I’ve always been a fan of Little Big Town and once again they did not disappoint with their wonderfully rich harmonies. In addition to many of their hits they sang their newest single “Little White Church” from their highly anticipated album “The Reason Why” to be released August 24 and also gave us a sneak preview of a couple more songs.
Jamey Johnson stepped onto the stage and seemingly threw down the gauntlet with his quiet, unassuming yet intense presence. He simply stood there and sang powerful songs, letting the words speak volumes. The stage lighting was dark and as I walked around to get a photo from another angle I was surprised to see his right arm in a cast with fingers just free enough to strum his guitar.
For me the highlight of Jamey’s set was when Little Big Town joined him on stage to sing his new single “Macon” from his upcoming album “The Guitar Song” set to be released September 14.
Photos from Country Throwdown Tour by CWalker (click to view)
• Bluebird Café
Troy Olsen, Ashley Ray, Brad Tursi, Dave Pahanish, Heather Morgan, Walker Hayes, Sarah Buxton, Jedd Hughes
• Outlaw Stage
Tyler Reeve, Emily West, Jonathan Singleton and The Grove, Heidi Newfield
• Main Stage
The Lost Trailers
Ryan Bingham and The Dead Horses
The Eli Young Band
Little Big Town
Published: Star Exponent
Re-posted: Urban Country Got Country?