Everyone has heard the horror stories. You’re friend went to LA and met her favorite movie star and guess what, he sucked. What a jerk. Or that time you waited behind the venue in the torrential downpour for your favorite musician to come out and when he did he flicked his cigarette at your feet and pretended not to see you. Makes it tough to listen to his album on the way to work the next day, doesn’t it? We can’t help but form opinions on artists when we connect to them through something as personal as music. I’m guilty of this to the 867th degree. I’m basically Rob Gordon in red lipstick. Seriously, am I miserable because I listen to popular music or do I listen to popular music because I’m miserable…I’ll never know. Anyway, walking into The Boot and Saddle last Friday I realized I had some pretty specific expectations of the singer/songwriter based solely on his music and the few times I had seen him previously. As we Spinal Tapped our way to the green room I realized I was completely nervous that all of my assumptions would be wrong.
Well ladies and gentleman of the internet world, I wasn’t wrong. Later, as I stood in the back of the club listening to Branan play I was really impressed by the sincerity in his music. Lyrically sound narratives with lines worthy of any hipsters wrist are presented in a heartfelt way that makes you feel like you’re sitting around a bar table reminiscing about that time we did that thing. It’s like a gathering of close friends who understand all the inside jokes until BAM! You’re hit with that one line that stings and you’re back in the real world wondering how a guy gets so damn good. Branan manages to deliver a special brand of music that appeals to country fans and punk kids alike. I’m really trying not to use the word universal, but it just might be the truth. I’ve never seen so much power and presence come from a scrawny dude with an acoustic guitar. If you’re looking for a break from the hipsters in flannel that Tim Barry warns you about, give Cory Branan a listen. And then go see him. Then go again. The only thing that stays the same from show to show is his shirt (I’m not kidding, but it’s endearing). Proving he’s legit, Branan goes with the flow. Oh you want to hear that song on the album thats a full blown, full band number? Sure, here it is slowed down, mellowed out and beautiful. That ballad that closes out his album? Get ready to stomp your feet because it’s gonna go quick.
Over all, the man is a story teller, a true musician and a southern gentleman. Check him out on his upcoming tour dates, buy concert tickets, and purchase a CD of The No Hit Wonder, as as soon as it drops in August. You can thank me later.