Our Appalachian Fair is over for this year. But what a year it was. Six nights; six headliners; three opening acts – Nine great artists took the stage during that six nights. And I found myself enjoying the openers as much as I enjoyed the headliners – maybe more in some cases. I wasn’t at all familiar with Chris Lane Band, at least not until they took the stage on Thursday night in Gray, Tenn. They were opening for Florida Georgia Line, and for now – that was the perfect place for Chris. His job was to get the crowd ready, he did that. And, he did so much more.
I met Chris before the show. He was eager to take part in an on-air live interview with our local radio station. He was anxious to meet with fans. He seemed to enjoy signing autographs and standing with fans for photos. After working hard on stage, and even coming out to join Florida Georgia Line for one song, he still found both the desire and the energy to come back out to his merchandise table after the shows, where he signed more autographs, talked to more fans, and gave me an autographed copy of his first full length album, “Let’s Ride”. I hope he never loses that – that desire to be accommodating to his fans. When you are that friendly to the people who come out to support you, it speaks volumes about your character.
When I listened to the CD, I wondered why we hadn’t heard of Chris before. I really liked the title track, “Let’s Ride,” although I wasn’t very happy with the rap version of that song, which was in the number 12 spot on the track listing. I still don’t think rap has a place in country music, and I don’t really care how good the artist is who is doing it. I can’t quite understand why so many of our country artists seem to want to incorporate that sound in their music. But with the exception of that song – the CD is good, and will certainly be spending a lot of time in my CD player.
I didn’t mean to turn this into a CD review, but there is a lot of good to talk about in this album. “Starting Tonight,” “More Than That,” and “Carolina Kiss” were among my favorites. “Alone,” featuring Chelsea Sorrell, sounds like anything else you might expect to hear on country radio these days. In fact, he doesn’t have a bad song on this album (okay, I didn’t like the rap version of “Let’s Ride,” but that isn’t saying you won’t).
Chris Lane Band gives you a little bit of everything, both on his CD and in his live show. From ballads to fast songs; from country to a country/pop or country/rock sound – Chris was out there to let us know who he was. And, I think now we know. Being there to open for Florida Georgia Line gave him an audience of more than 60,000, and he put on a great show for them. He released this album in the spring of 2012, and told me that he is working on a new one. Chris, I’m definitely ready to hear what you have coming next. But until then, I will keep enjoying this CD.
I’m gong to put up a few more pictures from the show on Thursday night. And, my apologies for some of these shots – didn’t realize it at the time, but apparently there was a little focusing issue going on. Next time I see Chris, and there will be a next time, I’ll try to do better.
[All photos in this article taken by Country’s Chatter. For larger view, click on photo]
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