Review and Photos by Mike HeineOn Friday night, 18-year country veteran Sawyer Brown took the stage as the headlining act. Not being a huge Sawyer Brown follower, I chose to just sit back, relax and enjoy his show. Little did I know, I wasn't going to be able to do that too easily.
Front man Mark Miller was all over the stage. I just had to stand and applaud his dance moves and mastery of lyrics. The fun Miller and his cohorts were having on stage transferred to those of us in attendance that warm night, and nearly everyone in the house was standing for the entirety of the two-hour show.
Before Sawyer Brown took the stage, one of country music's best duo acts came on. Montgomery Gentry got the party started early, and asked just how long they thought that party was gonna last with their swing hit "All Night Long."
I myself wished it really could have lasted all night long. The duo's rocking country style intermixed with some classic rock tunes, such as The Allman Brothers' "Midnight Rider," which had fans screaming for more. So too did playing all of their other hit songs throughout the set, including the likes of "Lonely and Gone," "Cold One Comin' On," "Couldn't Change Me," "Daddy Won't Sell the Farm" and my personal favorite, "Hillbilly Shoes," complete with its driving beat and guitar breaks.
The pair also gave fans a taste of what some are calling their best album yet, the soon to be released My Town. Backed up by some great banjo playing, Troy Gentry and Eddie Montgomery belted out the album's title track, the first released single from the album, and a new one simply called "Hell Yeah."
Did fans and I like the show? Hell yeah. Montgomery Gentry, the Country Music Association's 2000 Vocal Duo Group of the Year, could have and should have been playing all night long. If that were the case, I think the only complaint would have come from Sawyer Brown. No offense, Sawyer, but the mike-stand-twirling man in black, Eddie Montgomery, and his long time Jim Beam whiskey drinkin' buddy Troy Gentry should have been the night's headline act.
I'd give them an A. I'd also walk a country mile in my hillbilly shoes just to see them do it again. The two acts together made Friday night the best night to be there.
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