Drivin N Cryin performed at the Hargray Capitol Theatre in Macon, GA this past Thursday. Along with them was upcoming country artist Caleb Caudle.
Since 1985, Drivin N Cryin have been playing their music live on stage and drawing substantial crowds during their tours across the USA. Not only do they have ten albums under their belt, one of which went gold, they’ve also had a documentary produced about them and were inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. That is a great run for Drivin N Cryin during their past 32 years making music and today, they are still going strong.
There have been multiple lineup changes over the years but two constants remain, Kevn Kinney (vocals) and Tim Nielson (bass). In addition to the two founding members, Laur Joamets (guitar) and Dave Johnson (drums) make up the other part of the band. Here in the South, Drivin N Cryin is a household name and their fans love them.
Opening the show was Caleb Caudle, an up and coming artist from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Caleb Caudle has released multiple albums and even though his name is not well-known yet, Rolling Stone has recently placed him on their “List of 10 New Country Artists You Need to Know”. I’d say that is a fantastic achievement for any upcoming artist today.
Caudle’s voice has a bit of a rough edge to it which I found rather appealing. The crowd at the show began to gather during his set and take interest in him as well. I was glad to see him getting a positive response from the audience. It can be a bit bumpy at times for the opening performers. Throughout his set, he sang many songs from his various albums including “Anne Marie”, “Carolina Ghost”, “Tuscaloosa”, “White Doves Wing”, “N.Y.C. in the Rain” which he wrote in New York City while in the rain and his new song, “Love That’s Wild”. During his set he also sang a cover of Bob Dylan’s “She Belongs to Me”.
There is no doubt that Caleb Caudle is talented and is headed for great things in his career. At the end of his set he thanked everyone and gave a shout out to our local radio station, The Creek FM 100.9, for playing his tunes. We give Caleb Caudle a big thumbs up to for starting the night off with a solid performance. Make sure to check out his new album, ‘Crushed Coins’, which is set for release on February 23, 2018.
The Hargray Capitol Theatre is a small venue, so the fans were treated to a relatively intimate show. The crowd cheered and clapped as each member of Drivin N Cryin walked out onto the stage. The audience were gathered closely around the stage. Many of the fans at the show were obviously die-hard fans and would come see them perform come hell or high water.
The fans sang along to each song and danced in place as each song was performed. Song after song, the fans did not falter. They continued to boast out each lyric as they cheered and praised the band with beer bottle filled hands held high in the air.
The connection between the band and their audience was as if the band knew each person in the crowd personally, as if there was an independent, personal connection with each and every soul standing before them. They did not speak individually to everyone. It was how they played, as if they were in the presence of their friends. They jammed like they could have been playing in someone’s basement or garage. Between the songs there were extensive instrumental breaks and guitar solos. They even gave the crowd a small sample of dueling banjos.
Throughout their career, Drivin N Cryin have produced many amazing songs and Thursday night we were graced with the some of the best hits including “Honeysuckle Blue”, “Can’t Promise You the World”, “Scarred but Smarter”, “Jesus Christ”, “Fly Me Courageous”, “R.E.M.” and “Let’s Go Dancing”. For the first time ever on a live stage, they also performed their new song “Step by Step”. I am certain by the reaction of the crowd that this song will also become a fan favorite.
At the end of the night, their merchandise manager joined the band on stage with his ukulele as they played “Straight to Hell”, which is always a fan favorite. The crowd chimed in heavily during this song, like it was their anthem. It was light hearted and fun from start to finish. Even though I expected a bit of rowdiness to come from the audience during the show, it was quite mellow and laid back. Everyone just enjoyed the show.
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