Alee

Fingerprints: Eli Young Band at Boots & Hearts 2017

Saturday nights were made for live music, and at Boots & Hearts 2017, the Eli Young Band came through big time with exactly what we needed. The boys from Texas came north and warmed up the big stage for headliner, Brantley Gilbert, and they did a hell of a job.

From the top, Eli and the boys were on fire. Notes were hit, things were tight, fans were singing, dancing, cheering, and waiting for the hits they so desperately wanted to hear. Throughout the set, we heard a selection of radio hits, fan favourites, and cuts from their 2017 album, Fingerprints. As they rolled from song to song we watch girls pop up on shoulders, couples swaying together, and friends with arms over shoulders, shouting along and allowing the music to wash over them and bring them together in a moment.

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Eli Young Band-

Note: We learned on Sunday that Alee is a big Eli Young Band fan, telling us about sitting around listening to songs like Always The Love Songs and singing along almost 10 years ago now.

With all of the new country artists and bands that have burst onto the scene in the last few years, it may be that the Eli Young Band has become underrated. Go ahead and listen to Jet Black And Jealous, Drunk Last Night or Crazy Girl and you’ll be reminded how great they are. And then go listen to songs like Saltwater Gospel, Skin & Bones, and Never Land to be reminded of how good they still are today.

Up on stage, the Eli Young Band made us happy, and that’s always what we’re hoping for from live music performances in any genre.

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Eli Young Band

If you haven’t seen the Eli Young Band live, or if it’s been years since you did, we’re here to suggest that you Click Here to find a show near you and get there!

Eli Young Band, Boots & Hearts 2017 Setlist

👉🏼 Prayer For The Road
👉🏼 Jet Black And Jealous
👉🏼 When It Rains
👉🏼 Skin & Bones
👉🏼 Dust On The Bottle (David Lee Murphy)
👉🏼 Dust
👉🏼 Never Land
👉🏼 Saltwater Gospel
👉🏼 Drunk Last Night
👉🏼 Come Together
👉🏼 Small Town Kid
👉🏼 Guinevere
👉🏼 Always The Love Songs
👉🏼 Even If It Breaks Your Heart
👉🏼 Learning To Fly (Tom Petty)
👉🏼 Crazy Girl

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Deal With It: Alee at Boots & Hearts 2017

After a little hop and a couple deep breaths, Alee took to the Boots & Hearts 2017 main stage to kick off the Sunday music… and she killed it.

With an energetic and strong set, the 2-time Alberta Country Music Association Award winner for Female Artist of the Year proved that she’s earned her nomination for the 2017 Female Artist of the Year award from the Canadian Country Music Association. And while her set may have only been six songs long in the Sunday sun, there was dancing and singing and cheering along to songs including; Bad Habit, Deal With It, and Moonshine, in the field at Oro-Medonte.

Later in the afternoon we caught up with the Edmonton native to talk about the summer, what’s next, her CCMA nomination, and even got a tip for everyone going to Saskatoon for Canadian Country Music Week.

She told us that the summer has been great, with shows at Big Valley Jamboree, Boots & Hearts and more already, and Lucknow Music in the Fields still to come. And that she’s been learning to squeeze in writing time every chance she gets so she’s ready to go when it’s time to start laying down tracks for her next album.

We asked her about the feeling of getting on the big stages, and she said that it’s exciting. And through her smile and energy on the Sunday stage, we could see that excitement. Alee also told us that the band all looked at each other and had a little moment to appreciate that this may be the best that their music has ever sounded.

Note: We spotted Alee’s label mate, occasional writing partner, and fellow Boots & Hearts 2017 performer, Andrew Hyatt up in the wings watching the set and jamming along.

We landed on her CCMA nomination more than once while we were hanging out, and learned that this feels pretty great for a few reasons.

1) The obvious one, to be regarded as one of the top 5 female country artists in Canada is special. She mentioned that being in the top 10 is special itself, but to make the final ballot is something else.

2) She found out about the nomination while she was south, just outside of Nashville, and the first person she wanted to call was her grandmother, who lives in the Saskatoon area and will be coming to the awards with her.

3) Alee suggests that first-time visitors to Saskatoon take a trip down to the river for some hangout time.

We asked Alee what’s coming next, and she told us that she hopes to set some time aside for songwriting this fall. And she added that she’d love to take a trip to really get away and get in a writing space. She has a few ideas of where she’d like to go, but nothing is concrete yet. We can tell you this though, she’s got good ideas.

Note: We’ve also learned that Alee is a big fan of chicken wings. We don’t know her favourite flavour yet, but we’ll find out!

With her debut label album, Bad Habit, becoming a hit with country music fans, and her CCMA nomination putting her name in a brighter spotlight, Alee is poised to make some noise on the Canadian country music scene.

Deal with it.

Alee, Boots & Hearts 2017 Setlist

Turn This Night On
Deal With It
When I Do
Don’t Wait
Bad Habit
Moonshine

Boots-and-Hearts-2017-Alee-Interview-1Boots-and-Hearts-2017-Alee-Interview-2

Have Your Say: 2017 Canadian Country Music Association Awards Nominees!

The Canadian Country Music Association has announced the full list of 2017 CCMA Awards nominees… and it’s an impressive list of Canadian country talent!

We are lucky and privileged to have covered, met, and seen these artists put on amazing lives shows, record fantastic music, and grow into their careers.

But now, because we know you have an opinion, we want to know who you think should win at the 2017 CCMA Awards in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan on Sunday, September 10th. Use the polls to vote and support your favourite artists, and use the link at the bottom of the list to cast your official vote for the Fans’ Choice Award!

Have fun – and congratulations to all of the nominees in 2017, you should all be proud of your accomplishments, we can’t wait to hear what you’ve got coming for us next.

Click Here to submit your official vote for the Fans’ Choice Award!

And Click Here to see the full list of nominees in all 2017 Canadian Country Music Association categories! 

Boots & Hearts Preview: Andrew Hyatt & Alee Q&A

Boots & Hearts is coming, and it’s easy to tell you it’s one of our favourite weekends of the summer. It’s also easy to tell you that we’re excited to see Alee and Andrew Hyatt hit the stage to sing their songs.

These two Wax Records artists are coming to B&H to show the country music crowd what they have to offer… and if you haven’t seen them before, you’re in for a treat. And, if you have seen them, you know why you want to be there at the front of the stage to see each of their sets.

To get us all ready, we hooked up with Alee and Andrew for a little pre-festival Q&A action. We’d like to thank them both for their honesty, humour and use of emojis.

Q: What three words would you use to describe the feeling of getting up on a big stage in front of a bunch of rowdy country music fans?

Alee: Adrenaline-rush
Exhilarating
Wing-ding

Andrew: Hot and Heavy 🙂

Q: Which act are you most excited to see at Boots & Hearts this year?

Alee: Been a huge Eli Young Band since I was in junior high… so excited to finally see them live!!… but I mean, also, Brett Eldredge… 😍

Andrew: Keith Urban is definitely always a great show. Definitely looking forward to seeing as many of the acts as possible!

 

Q: How has the reception of your new music been with crowds so far in 2017?

Alee: Honestly, could not ask for more love from the fans! It has been pretty amazing to see social media posts with lyrics, or little messages about what certain songs mean to them… and it’s always magical to see them singing along at shows! I’m pretty blessed!

Andrew: It’s been amazing to see such a positive response to the current single and the record! It’s what drives me to keep going!

Q: Which Andrew Hyatt song is your favourite?

Alee: For starters – every Andrew Hyatt tune is a jam. I just tend to jam extra-hard when Goodbye Gone comes on.
Q:  Which Alee song is your favourite?

Andrew: Hard to pick! I love Bad Habit! Such a great hook!
Related: Iron & Ashes: Andrew Hyatt Album Review and Q&A

Q: Can you tell us something about you that we wouldn’t find in a Google search?

Alee: I used to play saxophone in a jazz band.

Andrew: I’m on Bumble haha

Q: If we got a look at your playlist right now, who would the top 3 artists be?

Alee: Rihanna, Rascal Flatts, and Thomas Rhett

Andrew: Jason Isbell, Donovan Woods, and Needtobreathe

CMT Music Fest - Andrew Hyatt

 

Q: What is your number #1 festival tip for the fans?

Alee: Check out as many artists you don’t know as possible! Never know when you’ll find a new fave!

Andrew: Hydrate, and for the love of God shower at least once! 😂

Catch both of these homegrown Canadian talents at Boots & Hearts 2017… and if you don’t have tickets yet, what are you waiting for? Click Here! 

Boots & Hearts Lineup Additions, News & Contest!

Just when we thought we couldn’t possibly get more excited about Boots & Hearts 2017, they go and give us more to smile about!

Seven new names have been added to the 4 day festival lineup… and we’ve finally be told who we’re going to see headlining the Thursday night, Coors Banquet Kick Off Party.

Ready?

Boots & Hearts Lineup Additions

Alee
Leaving Thomas
Delta Rae
Vanessa Marie Carter
Nice Horse
Colt Walker
Doc Walker

And… Doc Walker, Canadian legends, and makers of the new record, Weathervane, will be front and centre on Thursday night, headlining and running the kick off party!

We have been super happy to have Doc Walker back on the Canadian country scene, and this is just another chance to celebrate.

Just as happy as that makes us though, seeing the young talent added to the festival is awesome. AND we LOVE the fact that we’re adding more women to the stages with Alee, Delta Rae, Vanessa Marie Carter, Leaving Thomas, and Nice Horse bringing amazing female talent to the B&H crowds.

Now, to change gears for a minute, we want to fill you in on some things we learned about the 2017 Boots & Hearts festival during a chat with Ryan Howes…

★ There are changes coming to the stages – with brand new stages coming to the grounds for both the main and front porch performances.

★ And, the front porch stage will be moving, closer to the main stage, in an awesome wooded area that we’ve hung out in during WayHome. It’s going to be awesome for daytime and late night partying.

★ We’re getting a beach. Yup. A beach.

★ VIP ticket holders will experience more cool features and bonuses in 2017.

★ The camping experience is getting an update and upgrade. Look for new layouts, a 24 hour general store, and upgraded market area that will offer all kinds of awesome stuff.

★ And while it’s not new, we have been told that Buzz Brainard will be back with SiriusXM on a new stage, in a new spot, and with awesome programming.

All in all, Boots & Hearts 2017 is shaping up to be a pretty fantastic time. Headliners Keith Urban, Luke Bryan, and Brantley Gilbert will put on kick ass shows. Canadian stars like Chad Brownlee, Jess Moskaluke, and Cold Creek County will shine and make us proud. And there is so much emerging talent that you are going to fall in love with, if you haven’t already.

Remember, you’re going to see and sing along to JJ Shiplett, Jessica Mitchell, Andrew Hyatt, Aubrie Sellers, Endless Summer, Kelly Prescott, Midland and more.

If you love country music, you’re going to be happy.

And if you like being happy – enter this contest right now for your chance to win some B&H swag. We’ve got a prize pack of one (1) pair of Boots & Hearts sunglasses, and two (2) Boots & Hearts drink coozies that are going to be perfect for summer and the festival.
Use the widget below to earn up to 7 entries, and if you’re the winner, we’ll mail you the prize!

Stay tuned for more news, interviews, previews, and other awesome stuff as we get closer and closer to Boots & Hearts 2017!

CMW 2017: Livin’ The Dream with Drake White, Alee, Andrew Hyatt and Friends

The road to Boots & Hearts 2017 made at stop in Toronto during Canadian Music Week, and we were there to take it in – and enjoy the party at the Boots & Hearts + KX Country Hot Shots Concert Series.

Country music fans started walking through the doors as soon as they opened. They made their way to the bar, the taco stand (the fish tacos with a touch of hot sauce were fantastic btw), and the stage to get ready for a night full of action.

With 5 talented acts on the bill, there was no shortage of singalong, shake-along, and snap-along moments.

The night’s lineup played out like this…

☞ Kris Barclay
☞ Kendra Kay
☞ Andrew Hyatt
☞ Alee
☞ Drake White and the Big Fire

That opening slot, the one that Kris Barclay grabbed hold of with both hands, can be a tricky one. People are excited, but they’re already thinking about the headliner. People are ready to party, but they haven’t even finished their first drink yet. And still, Mr. Barclay made it his mission to get things started with a bang – and he killed it.

The energy pumped into his cover of Queen’s classic Fat Bottomed Girls, the sweetness in Good Wine, Old Vinyl & You gave everyone in the room a look at what Kris Barclay has to offer and what he can bring to the table – and what we’ll be looking for as his career moves forward.

With a Manitoba Country Music Association (MCMA) award for Female Artist Of The Year under her belt, Kendra Kay came into Toronto as a new face and voice to some, but not new to the game. Accompanied by her band in a plugged in, but stripped down set, Kay kept the party going with a mix of covers and originals that the Toronto CMW crowd got into.

Her cover of Here For The Party was a strong way to introduce herself to the crowd, and her own tracks, I Take My Country and Swinging Door did plenty to showcase her talent as a singer and a performer.

And, before the set was through, Kendra introduced the crowd to her upcoming single, My Way, which comes to radio and your ears in May. You’re going to like it. Trust us.

Right in the middle of the lineup, our listening and party pleasure – Andrew Hyatt took the stage and gave us exactly what we didn’t know we were hoping for from him.

We caught Andrew’s sound check and had were surprised to see so many dudes with guitars on stage with him. It was awesome – and certainly made the wait for his set exciting. And when he hit the stage, with his full band, plugged in and ready to go, it was time for a party!

From That’s How I’m Livin’ to Love Drunk to MGR (Me And A Girl And A Radio), Hyatt kept his energy at a 10, enjoying the hell out of the stage, his guitar, and the sound that his packed stage of instruments and instrumentalists were pushing through the speakers.

But before he was done for the night, Andrew showed off a song that’s been in our heads, on our minds, and all over the internet lately. She Ain’t You is already making an impact. It’s haunting, heartbreaking, beautifully crafted and performed… and while I have stopped myself from saying this a few times, I believe it could and should be for Andrew Hyatt what Workin’ On Whiskey was for Jessica Mitchell in 2016.

Following Hyatt, and keeping the energy up, was Edmonton’s Alee. With her guitar strapped on, Alee brough the crowd to her with sound and stunning look. Bad Habit, the title track to her brand new album (look for Bad Habit on Friday, April 21, 2017) made an instant impression. And performances of her current single When I Do, and one of my favourite all-time songs, Strawberry Wine did what they should have – made a whole lot of people very happy.

There are two notes in my book from the show that I feel need to be shared almost exactly as they’re scibbled down…

1) Smooth & sweet. Sassy when she wants to be.
2) She’s really, really good.

That’s what I wrote – and when Alee sang Moonshine, a track that I could easily put on playlists all day long, I felt as happy as I did during any point in the night.

Be ready for that new album, Alee is going places.

Last on the bill, in the headliner slot, and 100% worth the wait, was Drake White and the Big Fire!

All the way from Alabama to Canadian Music Week, Drake White lit the place up. As he was introduced and the Big Fire took the stage, the crowd got loud and as excited as they would have for any headliner. And when the music started, they sang and cheered from start to finish.

Tracks like That Don’t Cost A Dime, Story, and Heartbeat had the room buzzing – and had me looking at Drake White and thinking to myself, this is what an Alabama singer/songwriter would look like in a dream.

Drake White is an entertainer. He’s a performer. And he’s the real deal. Ask anyone who’s seen him and they’ll tell you that you need to see him the next time you have a chance. He’s a storyteller and a singer, he’s involved with the crowd, and he truly looks like he’s loving every minute of it.

And speaking of loving things… any time a country artist wants to share excellent covers of George Michael’s Faith and 4 Non Blonde’s What’s Up, I’m ready to love it, and I did.

Add in the chance to watch, sway, and sing along to Back To Free, Take Me As I Am, Makin’ Me Look Good Again, and Livin’ The Dream, and it’s fair to say that Drake White and the Big Fire were headliners in every sense of the word, and deserve every chance they get to play for as many people as they can shove into a room.

We can’t wait to see him at Boots & Hearts 2017!

 

CMW Preview: 19 Songs You Need to Hear at Canadian Music Week 2017!

The schedule is crazy. There are bands all over the city from all over the world. So here we are to try and give you some guidance.

Even if you can’t make it to every concert and showcase, you can start finding new music, and singing along to the tracks you know, with these 19 songs. Click any of the song titles to watch a video… or press play on the playlist at the bottom of the post and get your groove on!

Enjoy – and leave a comment telling us which songs you already loved, and which ones you’re happy you found…

Bleeker – Highway
Canada/Rock
Bleecker Julian Taylor Showcase CMW 2016

High Valley – She’s With Me
Canada/Country

Silver Love Club – Rachel
Australia/Rock
Mabel The Nightowl CMW 2016

Jess Moskaluke – Drive Me Away
Canada/Country
Jess Moskaluke Bright Lights Big City Toronto The Phoenix

The Dead Love – Summer
Australia/Rock
The Dead Love CMW 2016 Horseshoe

Madeline Merlo – Whatcha Wanna Do About It
Canada/Country
Madeline Merlo BH5 Boots and Hearts 2016

The New Electric – T-Shirt
Canada/Pop

Alee – Moonshine
Canada/Country

The Beaches – Give It Up
Canada/Rock

Drake White – Livin’ The Dream
United States/Country
CMT Music Fest - Drake White & The Big Fire

The Honest Heart Collective – Liar’s Club
Canada/Rock

James Barker Band – Chills
Canada/Country
James Barker Band SiriusXM Fan Stage BH5 Boots and Hearts 2016

Texas King – Come Find Me
Canada/Rock
Texas King Adelaide Hall 2016

Andrew Hyatt – MGR (Me And A Girl And A Radio)
Canada/Country
CMT Music Fest - Andrew Hyatt

Courage My Love – Stereo
Canada/Rock

Dani Strong – Wild One
Canada/Country
Dani Strong Boots and Hearts KX Hot Shots Showcase CMW 2016

Melissa Etheridge – I’m The Only One
United States/Rock

The Rifle & The Writer – Gig & Colour
Canada/Country

Repartee – Dukes
Canada/Pop
REPARTEE at Adelaide Hall - TORONTO WOMEN IN MUSIC

CMW Preview & Contest: Boots & Hearts Hot Shots ft. Drake White, Alee, Andrew Hyatt and more

Boots & Hearts doesn’t take over Burl’s Creek Event Park until August 10… but that doesn’t mean there isn’t B&H country music for us to celebrate before then!

We’ve already been out to see JJ Shiplett and Kelly Prescott on The Road To Boots, and now we’re prepping to hit The Phoenix Concert Theatre during Canadian Music Week as Boots & Hearts + KX Country present the Hot Shots Concert Series.

In 2016, on the exact same stage, we got to see Blackjack Billy, with Meghan Patrick, James Barker Band, Dani Strong, Kansas Stone, and Eric Ethridge – and it was a helluva good time. Heck, click here to check out the pics, they still make us smile!

And now, in 2017, we’re going to get Drake White and The Big Fire, with Alee, Andrew Hyatt, Kendra Kay, and Kris Barclay. It’s a solid lineup, one that promises to bring energy, volume, and the chance to dance while you singalong.

CMT Music Fest - Drake White & The Big Fire

Drake White, CMT Music Fest 2016

Note: There’s a playlist at the bottom of this post that will give you a taste of the music that’s going to be featured at this showcase… hit play and enjoy!

If you’re a country fan and listen to the radio we’re sure that you already know who Drake White is. But if you don’t know the supporting cast on this bill, be ready to hear some music that you can truly get behind as these artists grow their careers.

We got to see Drake White and The Big Fire last summer – which was a whole lot of fun. From note 1 the band brings the energy that you crave at a live show, and they continue to entertain, involve, and connect with the crowd until they’ve left the stage. We’re quite looking forward to Drake and his hat coming out to sing for us at The Phoenix.

And we’re just as excited for the opening acts as we are for the headliner!

We’ve been on the Alee and Andrew Hyatt bandwagons for a while now, because they’ve have released some killer music that we can’t listen to enough and probably singalong too loud to. And adding new to us acts in Kendra Kay and Kris Barclay brings that element of discovery that Canadian Music Week always delivers, and that we love.

All said and done, this is going to be the most ridiculous Tuesday night we’ve had in a long time. We’re confident in that fact.

We hope to see you there. Click here to learn more about the Boots & Hearts + KX Country Hot Shots Concert Series…

CMT Music Fest - Andrew Hyatt

Andrew Hyatt, CMT Music Fest 2016

Alee, 2016 CCMA Awards Green Carpet

CMT Music Fest - Drake White & The Big Fire

Drake White, CMT Music Fest 2016

 

We’re excited to have a Boots & Hearts Music Festival giveaway for you. We’ve got two prizes to give away!
Prize 1 – 4 passes to the Drake White show on April 18
Prize 2 – 2 Passes to the Drake White show PLUS 2 passes to Boots and Hearts.

Contest closes Tuesday at noon.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas from thereviewsarein.com and Friends!

This year, to celebrate the holiday season, we asked some of our musician friends to send us pics and videos sharing their best wishes to you!

We would like to thank everyone that helped us out with this project, the artists and their teams, and we would like to thank all of you for enjoying the messages when you’ve seen them on social media.

Now, in case you missed any of them, here are a heap of wishes that we would love to pass on to you!

And from our team at thereviewsarein.com, we would like to wish you Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and a safe and awesome New Year!

Dean Brody

Jessica Mitchell

Chad Brownlee

Madeline Merlo

Panicland

Mabel

Leah Daniels

Kansas Stone

The Lovelocks

River Town Saints

The Dead Love

The Hunter Brothers

Leaving Thomas

The Dead South

Andrew Hyatt

The Katherines

Mike Robins of Autumn Hill

Andrew Allen

Shae Dupuy

Alee

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