Posted by: Amy | May 19, 2010

May 14 – Brantley Gilbert, Blind Horse Saloon, Greenville, SC

We had such an amazing time at the Brantley Gilbert show in Macon, that Christy and I talked ourselves into taking a road trip to see Brantley again this past weekend. 🙂 We braved rush hour traffic and made the trip to Greenville, SC and arrived at the venue about ten minutes before the doors opened. The Brantley crowd isn’t full of early arrivers, as the Dierks Bentley crowd at the Blind Horse had been. There were only about 20 people in front of us in line. Once the doors opened, we got in and made our way to the bar to grab drinks and bottled water. We ran into Brantley’s merchandise manager Dawn who we had previously met in Macon. We chatted with her for a few minutes and she invited us to the table where she was sitting and she introduced us to Rachel Farley and her mom who had also come to the show. I told Rachel that I was looking forward to coming out to cover one of her full shows. She seems like a really sweet, down-to-earth girl and her voice is absolutely unbelievable! Lyn, Brantley’s personal manager, came in and talked to us for a while. She introduced us to Shannon Houchins, the president of Average Joes Entertainment, Brantley’s record label. We also met Ken Madson, the president of Full Scope Entertainment, a management company affiliated with Average Joes. With such heavy hitters in attendance, we knew that we were in for a fun night!

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The house band opened the show with covers of a variety of country songs. After the house band’s set, The Band Perry took the stage. They are a trio consisting of two brothers and a sister with tight harmonies and self-penned tunes. They played a good mix of ballads and uptempo songs. They played their current, debut single “Hip to My Heart” as the second song of their set. For most of the fans in the audience, it was the only song that everyone knew. The band played a neat medley that included “Independence,” “The Day the Music Died” and “Me and Bobby McGee.” The Blind Horse is a bit different in that fans are asked to sit on the dance floor until the artist(s) on stage gives everyone permission to stand, so we sat for the majority of the set until someone asked Kimberly Perry if we could stand. I’m not sure if Kimberly was aware of this rule as she gave the girl who asked a strange look and said, “Of course you can stand up!” From that point on, we were on our feet for the rest of the night. Near the end of their set, the band covered the Rolling Stones’ “Honky Tonk Woman.” By the end of their set, they had the fans cheering and clapping to the beat and everyone was excited for Brantley and the band’s set to start.

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The Band Perry’s Set List

  • Sugar Sugar
  • Hip to My Heart
  • The Way You Lie
  • All Your Life
  • If I Die Young
  • Under the Bus
  • Medley: The Day the Music Died/Me and Bobby McGee/Independence
  • Double Heart
  • Walk Me Down the Middle
  • Postcard from Paris
  • Honky Tonk Woman
  • Quittin’ You

The BG crowd may not arrive early, but they do come out in full force. By the time that the stage was set for Brantley, the place was packed and we were all anxious for Brantley to take the stage. He kicked off the show with “My Kinda Party” and from the first notes, it was obvious that Brantley and his very talented band were on their game. Brantley’s band consists of guitarist and background vocalist Jess Franklin, bass player and background vocalist Jonathan Waggoner, lead guitarist John Merlino and drummer Ben Sims. They are such a gifted group of musicians and several of the guys in the band have co-written songs with BG and/or co-produced his latest album. It’s evident that they’re comfortable playing together and enjoy being on stage. Brantley’s set list was very similar to the Macon set list with the exception that he omitted “Halfway to Heaven” and instead had Rachel Farley come out to sing two songs, which was a nice treat. Rachel delivered two powerful original songs accompanying herself with an acoustic guitar as Brantley and the band took a break to cool down. The crowd was very receptive to Rachel and I think that everyone was truly impressed by the power of her voice. It absolutely amazes me that she is only 15 years old. Her voice is mature beyond her years. She’s got the potential to be a huge star!

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To address the comment of a reader of my Macon show review, yes, Brantley’s set list was very similar to the Macon show. But, if you see an artist multiples times, especially in close sequence, there’s bound to be overlap and a similar vibe. However, he didn’t tell the exact same stories and he didn’t just go through the motions. He was clearly excited about being on stage and as he was shaking hands with the audience, he took the time to look at the people attached to those hands and made eye contact. I even saw him saying thank you to people as he was touching their hands. It was evident to me that this wasn’t just an act and that he was truly humbled by everyone’s support. During the acoustic set, he got a little misty-eyed because of the audience’s response and the volume at which we were singing along. He recognized Christy and me from meeting him in Macon and he came over to us several times during the show to makes funny faces at us or touch our hands. He even took my camera and made a picture of the crowd. He kept promising to come back to Greenville, especially during the moments when he was clearly overwhelmed by the amount of love he was receiving from the audience. Brantley sang “G.R.I.T.S.” for the encore and had Rachel come back out to sing it with him. When the song was over, he and his security detail made their way through the screaming crowd, delighting fans before they exited the building.

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Brantley’s Set List

  • My Kinda Party
  • Hell on Wheels
  • Copperhead Road
  • Bending the Rules and Breaking the Law
  • Live It Up
  • Lie Baby Lie

Acoustic

  • The Best of Me
  • Picture on the Dashboard
  • My Kind of Crazy
  • Them Boys

Rachel Farley

  • Dancing with the Devil
  • Angel
  • Kick It in the Sticks
  • Dirt Road Anthem
  • Outlaw Women
  • Take It Outside
  • Simple Man
  • G.R.I.T.S.

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This show was even better and had more energy than the Macon show. I was thoroughly impressed with Brantley and all of the guys in the band. They were going full throttle all night long. After the show we talked to Dawn and Lyn for a little while and then set out to find Waffle House. We finally checked into our hotel after 4 a.m. and got some rest before hitting the road for night two of the Brantley concert weekend in Charlotte, NC. I will try to have the review of that show posted in the next couple of days.

Here’s the whole album from Greenville.

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Responses

  1. I am so thankful that you have been going to his shows and sharing these photos. I love Brantley crazy and have to wait until july 3rd to see his face and hear his voice, but your pics and reviews make me feel like a I’m there in a way…just a lil. Gah, I love him and just can’t find patience on waiting!!

    • Thank you, Melissa! That means a lot to me. I always want for my reviews to make you feel like you were at the show.

      Brantley is so incredibly talented and I’m rooting for him to become a big star. He writes and sings from the heart and you can never have too many artists like that!

      Enjoy your show on July 3!! It’ll be here before you know it! But, waiting is definitely the hardest part!! 🙂


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