Fresh off the 4/20 release of his highly anticipated new album Lonesome As A Shadow, Dallas’ prodigal son Charley Crockett kicked off his tour with a few album release shows in Texas before heading out across the entire U.S.
Having sold out the legendary Gruene Hall the night before, the energy inside Stubb’s was electric. Full of cowboy hats and the occasional hipster, everyone in attendance seemed eager to see what was in store.
After a short but sweet set from Austin’s next great country act Carson McHone, the lights went dark and Charley graced the stage. Kicking off the night with his bayou inspired track “Ain’t Got No Time To Lose” transporting the audience straight into New Orleans during Mardi Gras.
Blending the authentic horns of New Orleans Jazz with Bluegrass and Americana riffs on guitar, The Blue Drifters are without a doubt one of the best backing bands in Texas. Creating a sound built on nostalgia gives you a taste of the familiar with a modern twist.
The set took you from New Orleans speakeasy to the back of a train car in the Old West knowing that this is music even your Grandparents would appreciate.
A major highlight of the evening came during Charley’s rendition of Texas legend Freddy Fender’s classic “Wasted Days and Wasted Nights” giving it an uptempo facelift that made you want to swing dance even though you don’t know how.
Going into “If Not The Fool” off Lonesome As A Shadow, Charley tapped into his inner Bill Withers delivering the most soulful blues hybrid you’ve heard this century. One may ask themselves how one man can go from dancing like Dwight Yoakam and playing pure Honky Tonk to Cajun Zydeco. But that’s just the beauty of Charley Crockett.
Finishing his set with a 4-song encore, including personal favorite “I’m Workin” sending the crowd home with a performance worth way more than the price of admission.
Charley Crockett and The Blue Drifters are one of the best acts in Texas and one of the most original sounds you’ll ever hear. If you get the chance to see them live, don’t miss it because they won’t be playing small venues for long.
Photos by: Matthew Carlin @yo_mtv_matt