Coors Banquet

Bless My Heart: Vanessa Marie Carter at Boots & Hearts 2017

2016 Boots & Hearts, Emerging Artist Showcase winner, Vanessa Marie Carter hit the main stage on Thursday as part of the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party – and reminded thousands of country music fans why she took home that title, and what she brings to a party.

VMC rolled through a 10 song set on the big stage that she first got a taste of last summer, giving fans something to dance, sing, and cheer about. Covers of Shania’s Honey I’m Home, Cam’s Untamed, and Carrie Underwood’s Smoke Break all showed off her voice and brought the fans into sing along and dance break moods. While originals Criminal (a duet written with Chad Brownlee, and performed at B&H 2017 with Al Rowe), Everything Fades, and her upcoming single, Bless My Heart gave evidence to the growth, potential, and talent that Vanessa Marie Carter carries with her right now.

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Vanessa Marie Carter

Note: One of our favourite moments came when Vanessa Marie covered Sam Hunt’s House Party. It may have taken just a second for everyone to get into it – but that song is a jam, and it was a good time hearing a female lead spin on it!

Related: Vanessa Marie Carter Live at The Ranch!

From start to finish, the sound on stage was tight, with the band pulling their weight and then some. And to see Vanessa Marie working the crowd, walking the catwalk, and looking strong and comfortable on the stage was fantastic. The work that she has put in over the last year to move forward in her career is clearly visible – and it’s paying off.

This is an artist on the rise, one to watch, and a woman that we are sure we’ll see again on the Boots & Hearts stage.

Vanessa Marie Carter, Boots & Hearts 2017 Setlist

❤ Flames
❤ Trouble Like You
❤ Honey I’m Home (Shania Twain)
❤ Untamed (Cam)
❤ Everything Fades
❤ Drink You Up
❤ Smoke Break (Carrie Underwood)
❤ House Party (Sam Hunt)
❤ Criminal
❤ Bless My Heart

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Candyland: Love and Theft at Boots & Hearts 2017

You could be forgiven for forgetting that it was Thursday when you looked out into the crowd during Love and Theft’s main stage set at Boots & Hearts. Thousands of excited country fans gathered in the field in front of the stage to celebrate the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party – and sing along to some of the duo’s biggest hits.

Eric Gunderson and Stephen Barker Liles took turns singing lead (as they do) and keeping the fans engaged throughout their set. They compliment each other perfectly in energy and solid, sweet harmonies that we could listen to all night. And with the band tight and on point, the sound from Love and Theft certainly didn’t show any cracks.

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Love and Theft

Thousands of voices sang along to Whiskey On My Breath, Angel Eyes, and covers of David Lee Murphy’s Dust On The Bottle, and Tom Petty’s Free Falling – and they sounded great. We also saw couples dancing sweetly, friends dancing like no one was watching (we were), hands in the air, and girls on shoulders as the songs rang out through the speakers. Forget the short day, kick off party thing, this was a proper main stage festival set, by two dude that know what’s up – and a band that killed it right along with them.

At one point, we were told that Eric and Stephen hadn’t been to Canada in a while because of some border permission issues, but now that those are all cleared up, they were happy to be at Boots & Hearts. Here’s hoping those permission issues don’t happen again.

Word on the internet is that Candyland will be the lead single to a fourth album from Love and Theft, and if we didn’t have to wait too long for that, we’d be happy. And if we don’t have to wait too long to see them live on stage again too, we’d be even happier.

Love and Theft, Boots & Hearts 2017 Setlist

🍬 Can’t Wait For The Weekend
🍬 Let’s Get Drunk And Make Friends
🍬 Dust On The Bottle
🍬 Candyland
🍬 Runnin’ Out Of Air
🍬 Runaway
🍬 Love Wins
🍬 Free Falling
🍬 Whiskey On My Breath
🍬 Night That You’ll Never Forget
🍬 Angel Eyes

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Weathervane: Doc Walker at Boots & Hearts 2017!

Doc Walker hit the Boots & Hearts main stage on Thursday night in the headlining slot… and they showed the assembled country fans that they’ve still got after more than two decades on the job!

With a setlist full of hits and sing alongs, the boys made sure to keep the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party going after the sun went down and the moon peeked through the clouds over Oro-Medonte. The energy level of Chris, Dave, and the band was matched by the thousands of fans in the field in front of the stage. We saw dancing, singing, cheering, girls on shoulders, and a whole lot of happy faces.

This was a good time, from every angle, no matter where we looked. And it was fantastic to see at the start of one of our favourite weekends of the summer.

In looking at Doc Walker’s achievements over the years (CCMA and Juno Awards wins) it seems silly to say this… but in my opinion, Doc Walker are underrated. They played song after song that connected with the crowd, and there were very few that didn’t have fans singing along nearly word for word. Heck, they just released a greatest hits album last year that had 20 tracks on it. And yet, I just don’t think they get enough credit for their career in many country fans’ eyes. These guys deserve your praise and love!

Related: Echo Road: Doc Walker Q&A!

The sound from the stage was great from Sicka Whiskey, through to Rocket Girl, Heaven On Dirt, and the rest of their Thursday night set. It may have taken six years for the band to land on the Boots & Hearts lineup, but it was well worth the wait.

And the next time you have the chance to see Doc Walker live on a stage near you – take it.

Doc Walker, Boots & Hearts 2017 Setlist

★ Sicka Whiskey
★ Beautiful Life
★ Put It Into Drive
★ I’m Gonna Make You Love Me
★ Country Girl
★ That’s All
★ Rocket Girl
★ Heart Of The Heartland
★ Driving With The Brakes On
★ That Train
★ That’s How I Like It
★ Heaven On Dirt
★ If I Fall
★ She Hasn’t Always Been This Way
★ Walk Like An Egyptian
★ Backstreet’s Back
★ What Do You See
★ The Show Is Free

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Boots & Hearts 2016 Preview: Jake Owen Top 5

If you asked us if we’re excited about Jake Owen coming to Boots & Hearts 2016 it would be nearly impossible for us to say no. And if we did, we’d be lying.



Jake has been on our list of dudes we love in country for a while. From Yee Haw in 2006 to American Country Love Song in 2016, it’s been a good decade for barefoot Jake… from long hair to short, blue jeans to board shorts, this lovin’, beachin’, good timin’ Florida boy has more to give as he crosses the 35 years old mark, and we’ll be here to listen.

Now, to get us all ready for Jake Owen’s headlining performance on Thursday, August 4th at Boots & Hearts 2016, we’ve got our 5 favourite tracks from his library + a bonus track featuring Jake and 6 of his most talented friends.

Have a look and leave a comment telling us what Jake Owen favourites we left off the list that you wish were here… and stay tuned because more great Boots & Hearts coverage is coming – and we might even have another contest or 2 up our sleeves 😉

Jake Owen Top 5!


What’s not to love about this song?! Number 1 on the charts, and in our hearts, Jake Owen can take us beachin’ any time… including the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party at Boots & Hearts 2016!

Barefoot Blue Jean Night

Another one of our favourites, this song is just a lot of fun. Good old fashioned fun. And that’s good enough for us. Plus, it also went #1, so you know that we aren’t the only ones who love it. Get ready to sing along!

Note: We do not recommend being barefoot too much at Boots & Hearts… better safe than sorry!

Anywhere With You

This is a sweet song, the kind that makes you want to have someone to follow anywhere… West Virginia, baby I don’t care.

Also, it’s proof that Jake Owen doesn’t need to sing a beach themed party song to make us happy.

Don’t Think I Can’t Love You

Another romantic reminder from Jake that he’s not just a barefoot beach bum… Don’t Think I Can’t Love You is a favourite – and we’re not ashamed to say it. We love love songs. And while this isn’t a traditional ballad, it works, and it’s relatable, and that might be the most Jake-like thing about it… it’s real.

Real Life

It’s short hair Jake!

The lead single from the upcoming (still untitled as far as we know) album has a decidedly Jake Owen feel to it, and that’s probably why we like it so much. There’s also a little Sam Hunt talky/singy action, which doesn’t bother us one bit, because he pulls it off just fine.

If the rest of the record is as good as this (and American Country Love Song) we should all be satisfied.

BONUS: Life In A Northern Town w/ Sugarland and Little Big Town

There’s not much more to say about this than we LOVE it. The harmonies put together by these 7 ridiculously talented people are something like heaven. There’s a reason we love choir music… and this is pretty darn close to that.

2 years ago

Boots & Hearts 2016 Coors Banquet Kick Off Party – Line Up Confirmed!

It’s been a while since our last Boots and Hearts artist announcement but we’ve got a great one for you today.

The acts for the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party have been booked for Thursday night and we’re super excited about all five!

★ Jake Owen
 Emerson Drive
★ Tebey
★ Meghan Patrick
Johnson Crook Screen Shot 2016-03-25 at 2.31.29 AMOur headliner for the night will be none other than Jake Owen! The only absolute newcomer to the Boots & Hearts stage, I’m already thinking about summer, smiling and barefoot blue jean nights.

Returning artists include returning artists, multi-award winning Emerson Drive, and the talented Tebey, who we got a peek of last year for one song! I’m sensing we may get a reprise of Wake Me Up from these guys.

The Stone Sparrows Meghan Patrick BootsNow the next two acts are pretty special to me, Meghan Patrick, was in fact, the first band I ever shot. At the time, she was kicking it with her band The Stone Sparrows and to this day, my shot of her boots is still one of my favourites. Meghan’s been all over everyone’s radar this past year and after signing with Warner Music you can expect to see a lot more of her. Her current single Bow Chicka Wow Wow is climbing the country charts.

Johnson CrookOn to Johnson Crook, it’s no secret that we have a special spot for these guys. We met the guys last year when they qualified for the Emerging Artist Competition. Well, they didn’t win but their immense talent has brought them to the festival anyway! This Toronto-based band has become one of favourites. Amazing harmonies, thoughtful lyrics and generally great guy vibes are just a few of the reasons we love them. We’re pretty sure you will too.

If you’ve never been to the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party, you’re in for a treat. Party starts at 5PM on Thursday, August 3rd! If you haven’t got your tickets yet, we’ve got a contest on the go, 4 General Admission passes + camping. Contest closes April 1st.

2 years ago

Jumped Right In: Dallas Smith at Boots & Hearts 2014

The first time I saw Dallas Smith perform was at Boots and Hearts… 2012.

On Thursday night at the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party I saw him again, and thank goodness I did because that man put on one helluva show and knocked the socks of somewhere around 30,000 loud and happy country music fans in Bowmanville.

Dallas got a HUGE pop from the crowd and started his set with Nothing But Summer which was a good way to get the fans eating out of the palms of his hands. He continued with more of his own hits like Slow Rollin’, What Kind Of Love, and A Girl Like You which were all great and had me and thousands of others singing along.

Dallas Smith Loves Boots and Hearts 2014Smith, the former lead singer of rock outfit Default, also dropped the first F-bomb on the Boots & Heart stage, and they continued through the show, always jovial and excited and ready to party. The best F-bombs.

And speaking of Default, Dallas and his country band played Wasting My Time, which had everyone singing along too… because we all remember it from 2001.

While I wouldn’t call Wasting My Time a cover, we did get covers of Rascal Flatts’ Fast Cars And Freedom, Kings Of Leon’s Sex On Fire, Lorde’s Royals, and Imagine Dragon’s Radioactive. Here are the lessons to learn from this: A) Dallas Smith can sing more than just country music. B) Non-country songs sound pretty great when played by awesome country musicians.

Note: Congrats to Dallas for 2 awesome reasons…
1) Smith and his wife have welcomed a new baby girl… so that’s pretty great.
2) Tippin’ Point were given a plaque in recognition of becoming the fastest Canadian Country Single to go platinum.

Here’s the long and the short of it – Dallas Smith switched from rock to country, put together an awesome band, has made a bunch of hits and is totally worth the headlining spot at a festival like Boots & Hearts.

Great job Dallas, hope to see you again soon.

Work Hard. Play Harder. Be Awesome.

Check out more pictures of Dallas Smith rocking the Boots & Hearts stage on Trish’s blog HERE!

Dallas Smith Boots and Hearts 2014Dallas Smith On Stage at Boots & Hearts 2014

3 years ago

Boots & Hearts 2014 – It’s Here!

Boots and Hearts 2014 Coors Banquet Kick Off PartyAfter 12 months of waiting, wishing, making predictions and previews – Boots & Hearts 2014 is here!

At 6pm today the music starts with The Reklaws at the Coors Banquet Kick Off Party on the SiriusXM stage. Natalie Stovall & The Drive, Brett Kissel, and Dallas Smith are also on the schedule tonight and I have no doubt that they will all put on great sets to get B&H started for the 3rd year.

Yesterday someone asked me who I’m excited to see at the festival and I had trouble keeping my list short-ish and not just naming everyone.

I admit that I’m hyped to see headliners Luke Bryan and Blake Shelton.

I’ve seen Paul Brandt at Boots & Hearts before, but I’m looking forward to seeing him again.

I can’t wait to see some of the new acts like Jess Moskaluke, Trinity Bradshaw, Runaway Angel, Sam Hunt, and Dan + Shay.

It will be awesome to see Sawyer Brown and Neal McCoy who had many hits on country radio when I was a kid.

Boots & Hearts is becoming the highlight of the summer for a lot of country music fans in Ontario. And the bigger it gets, the better it gets, the more exciting it gets – the happier I am. This festival is turning into a must see and the privilege to attend as media and bring reviews and photos and interviews back to you guys makes me happy for sure.

So thank you to the people at Republic Live, Boots & Hearts, the readers here and everyone else who has made this content possible… I’m a lucky boy and can’t wait to get to Bowmanville for 4 days of good times and great music!

Stay tuned for reviews, photos and interviews all weekend from Boots & Hearts!

Work Hard. Play Harder. Be Awesome!

3 years ago
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