Nice Horse

Big Valley Jamboree 2018 Lineup Preview

Since 1993, the Big Valley Jamboree has been putting country music hit makers on stage for a weekend of good times – and in 2018 the tradition will continue.

The lineup of Canadian and American country artists is impressive and has a lot to offer to any live crowd. Put them all together and Thursday, August 2 to Sunday, August 5 should be a helluva weekend in Camrose, Alberta.

We’ve lined up the artists here (the main stage and then the SiriusXM Stage) with some of the reasons we think you should be excited, and what you might be able to expect.

Ready? Here we go!

Main Stage


Thomas Rhett – 9:00pm

Rhett has also been announced as a headliner in Ontario at Boots & Hearts this summer, giving the country music hitmaker back-to-back weekends headlining for Canadian fans.

We’ve seen Thomas Rhett on stage before, and he puts on a killer show. And now, with new music from his 2017 album, Life Changes, to add to his set – we’re sure he’s going to have a new wrinkle or two to add to his show.

Be ready to dance and sing and cheer and have a good time!

Thomas Rhett Boots and Hearts 2015

Paul Brandt – 7:30pm

Paul Brandt is a hit maker, fan favourite, and Canadian Country Music Association Hall of Famer – and the opportunity to see him up on stage playing songs that fans will no doubt know all the words too is amazing.

Tune up your voices to belt out Alberta Bound, Small Towns And Big Dreams, My Heart Has A History, Get A Bed, and Paul Brandt’s most recent top 20 hit, The Journey!

Billy Ray Cyrus – 5:00pm

Yes, Billy Ray Cyrus owns one of the most divisive hits in the history of country music, but he’s got a lot more than that to offer.

We’ve seen Cyrus play live, but never on a big stage with a big crowd… but we’d bet that it’s awesome.

Whether he’s playing songs from Some Gave All, Set The Record Straight, or any of his 13 albums in between, Billy Ray Cyrus will be at the Big Valley Jamboree to put on a show.

Carolyn Dawn Johnson – 3:30pm

Canadian country music fans will remember how successful and important CDJ was in the early 2000’s. They should also know that she hasn’t stopped, and she’s got as much talent now as she had before.

When y’all hear songs like Georgia and Complicated, let yourself be taken back to 2000 and enjoy every minute of it.

Leaving Thomas – 2:00pm

This upstart country music duo out of Calgary has new music coming in 2018, which will give them more songs for their Big Valley Jamboree set. And if the response to Best Adventure and Waiting Kind Of Girl at the 2017 Leaving Thomas shows we saw is any indication, it’s going to be fun!

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Leaving Thomas


Alabama – 9:00pm

Having had the chance to see the legendary Alabama on stage at Boots & Hearts year one in 2012, we know just how great it is to experience all of the hits live.

The harmonies are still magical. The songs are still as impactful and fun as they always were, and Alabama have some pretty fun stories too.

With 32 number one hits, Alabama has no shortage of songs to choose from to play for a live crowd. That does mean that you might not hear a few of your favourites, but we can promise that what they do play will make you smile and sing.

Dallas Smith – 7:30pm

One of the biggest acts of any genre in Canada, Dallas Smith continues to wow fans with his live shows. And when he gets on a big stage at a big festival, he does exactly what he has to to get a big crowd fired up and engaged.

Smith has energy to spare when he fires it up, and as he sings and makes his way from one side of the stage to the other, you’re sure to see hands go up and cheers rise from the Big Valley Jamboree crowd.

Hits from Jumped Right In, Lifted, and Side Effects, will flow throughout Smith’s set – and we’d bet that the Juno and CCMA winner will give Canadian fans a highlight of their summer.

Dallas Smith CNE 2015

Jess Moskaluke – 5:00pm

As a three time Female Artist of the Year winner at the Canadian Country Music Association awards, Jess Moskaluke has shown that she is a star in Canadian Country. And when she hits the stage at the Big Valley Jamboree we are certain that her charm and talent will shine bright.

With nine singles cracking the top 20, and three of those landing in the top 10 (including her highest charting single, Drive Me Away, charting at number three on the Canadian country charts) Jess Moskaluke is not lacking for music to play live. And, with her background in YouTube covers part of her story, Moskaluke isn’t afraid to have a little fun and play some of her favourites from other artists and genres while she’s on stage.

Have fun!

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Jess Moskaluke

Aaron Goodvin – 2:00pm

Another rising star in Canadian country, Goodvin has been earning fans and pleasing ears with every step he’s taken in his career. 2018 will start on tour with Gord Bamford, and by the time the Big Valley Jamboree hits in August, Goodvin should be at the very top of his live performance game.

Be prepared for it to get loud in the crown when Aaron Goodvin and the band break into Lonely Drum – trust us.


Florida Georgia Line – 9:00pm

A lot of people have a lot of things to say about Florida Georgia Line… here’s what we have to say.

1) FGL have proven to us on more than one occasion that they know how to have a good time and put on a great live show.

2) One of the very loudest and goosebump inducing moments we’ve ever had at a concert came in Toronto when the crowd sang along to H.O.L.Y. – it was amazing – click here to see it on video.

3) Tyler and BK are hit makers, and the crowd will know the words to their songs. And when you’re talking about a live show, that’s a big ingredient for a good time.

4) The energy that these two dudes bring to the stage, with humility and grace and appreciation for the crowd in front of them is overlooked and always connects well with a crowd.

5) Florida Georgia Line has a ton of energy – and if hit songs are a big ingredient, so is this!

Florida Georgia Line Molson Amphitheatre

Brett Eldredge – 7:30pm

This dude is one of the most talented and charismatic characters in Nashville right now, and when he comes to the Big Valley Jamboree main stage, y’all are gonna see it!

Brett Eldredge will be more than happy to play his Platinum, Gold, and Top five hits for the crowd. And if our experience seeing him in the summer of 2017 is any indication of what BVJ in 2018 will be, everyone should be very happy.

ps. If you’re lucky, he’ll have Edgar with him and you’ll get to meet one of the cutest dogs you’ve ever seen.

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Brett Eldredge

Small Town Pistols – 3:30pm

When Amanda and Tyler Wilkinson hit the stage a wave of nostalgia and happiness will hit the crowd, and it will be awesome.

Each Small Town Pistols show we’ve seen has included fan favourites from their two records, plus great selections from Amanda’s solo career, and mega hits from The Wilkinsons.

We’ve never been disappointed and we don’t believe you will be either!

Small Town Pistols Boots and Hearts 2015

Danny Hooper – 2:00pm

The long serving (25 years) MC of the Big Valley Jamboree main stage, Danny Hooper has pretty much seen it all. And on Sunday he’ll be kicking off the last day of festivities himself.

Be ready for a good start to the end of a fantastic weekend of BVJ country music!

Kickoff (Thursday)

Luke Combs – 11:00pm

With Hurricane and When It Rains It Pours, Luke Combs has announced himself as one of the biggest new voices in country music. And when he hits the Big Valley Jamboree kickoff stage, we’d bet that things are going to heat up quickly.

Be ready for a party!

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band – 9:30pm

Legends! What more do you need to hear about the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.

Yes, we all know they’ve got one of the most beloved songs in country music to play for y’all… but there’s more than just that. However, we’d by foolish and lying if we told you that the biggest cheers and loudest singing of the night wasn’t going to come during Fishin’ In The Dark!

Coors Banquet Saloon, SiriusXM Stage


Aaron Pritchett – 12:00am

Aaron Pritchett is a Canadian country music fan favourite. His songs range from the emotional stories we love from the genre, to the party hits that you can’t help but jam out to.

And while we don’t know which songs Pritchett will fit into his set at BVJ, we would suggest that you be ready for a party when he hits the stage at midnight.

Aaron Pritchett BH5 Boots and Hearts 2016

Drew Gregory – 10:30pm

One of Alberta’s favourite local boys, Drew Gregory knows how to have a good time on stage. With a combination of originals and covers, we watched Gregory introduce himself to Toronto this fall, and we know that when he gets on the SiriusXM stage at BVJ, he’ll give just as entertaining a set!


Emerson Drive – 12:00am

Emerson Drive are one of the most successful acts in the last two decades of Canadian country music. With hits and fan favourites, we’ve seen them put on a show that wows that crowd and facilitates a party.

And when they hit the SiriusXM Stage at midnight on Saturday, we have a feeling that they’ll be doing the same thing all over again!

Emerson Drive BH5 Boots and Hearts 2016

Nice Horse – 10:30pm

One of our favourite new bands in 2017, Nice Horse will bring talent, energy, fun, and a good time to the late night Saturday set.

If you don’t know them yet, you’ve got time to get yourself familiar with these four ladies – because you’re going to want to know them when they hit that stage!


SiriusXM Surprise Guest – 12:00am

I mean, there’s not a lot we can say about a surprise guest that we don’t know anything about.

But, after an entire weekend of fantastic country music at the Big Valley Jamboree, we can comfortably tell you that we expect an artist to be announced that knows how to throw a party and make sure everyone ends their weekend with a bang after Florida Georgia Line finishes on the main stage.

4 weeks ago

There Goes The Neighbourhood: Nice Horse Album Review

Nice Horse is in the saddle and ready to ride with the release of their debut album, There Goes The Neighbourhood.

The four talented women out of Calgary, Alberta have put together a solid collection of eight tracks as a follow up to their four track EP release earlier this year (A Little Unstable). And after multiple listens to the new album, the chance to see Kaley Debra, Krista Lee, Brandi Caroline, and Katie Marie play live, and a little educated guessing for the future – we’re here to tell you that it won’t be long until there are more songs, and more people clamouring for Nice Horse content.

There Goes The Neighbourhood comes out of the gate with Pony Up, a banger that will get toes tapping, shows off the vocals and harmonies of the band, and serves as an excellent start to the party. If hitting play on this song is anyone’s introduction to the band, they’ll get an instant taste of the good timing capabilities of these country musicians.

The record continues with a selection of songs that makes you want to dance and maybe have a drink or two… as well as a slowed down tracks that show off even more range, and the ability of these songwriters and performers to take listeners on the full journey that country music offers to its fans. The collection of voices on these eight songs is impressive. With no single member of the band overshadowing the rest, this truly feels like a four woman act, not a lead singer and supporting musicians. And whether they’re taking turns on the microphone, or coming together with smooth harmonies that blend together so very nicely, Nice Horse makes his album sound like a full band showcase.

Note: We had the chance to see and meet Nice Horse at Boots & Hearts this summer, and we’d be lying if we said we aren’t looking forward to our next chance to hang out with them. These women are funny, genuine, don’t pull any punches, and are ready to have a good time doing what they love. When you get the chance to see them live, take it.

While we’re not sure if it will ever be a radio single, we want to shout out the fan favourite potential of Mansplainin’, a clever and catchy track that could very easily become a rallying cry and anthem for women who are 100% sick of men being as cliched and ridiculous as they can be.

From start to finish, There Goes The Neighbourhood is a strong debut full length release from Nice Horse. Yes, we wish there were three more tracks, but that’s just a further testament to the quality of the eight tracks on the album. The weaving back and forth of upbeat front porch party songs and slowed down songs that let you slip away into the music is well executed. The energy and levity of the four friends mixes perfectly with the more tender side that they share when things change direction.

If you don’t know Nice Horse yet, now’s the time. Check out the photos from Boots & Hearts 2017 and press play on the album stream to get started.

Nice Horse, There Goes The Neighbourhood Tracklist

1. Pony Up
2. Jim, Jack, Johnnie & Jose
3. Six Strong Outlaw
4. Mansplainin’
5. Tonight
6. Beer Baby Banjo
7. Put Your Lips On Me
8. Hold Your Horses

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Nice Horse

Pony Up: Nice Horse at Boots & Hearts 2017

In the middle of the Saturday afternoon sun, Nice Horse took to the Boots & Hearts Front Porch Stage to introduce themselves to some new fans, and play some music that we’re all going to hear a lot more of soon.

Kaley Debra, Krista Lee, Brandi Caroline, and Katie Marie are energetic, effervescent, and exactly what we could have hoped for when we hung out later in the afternoon for a chat about their summer, what’s next, and a bucket list item we all agree a social media campaign can help with… or at least not hurt.

The women of Nice Horse shoot from the lip, the idea of being contrived doesn’t seem like it even appears on their radar, and we like it that way. As we chatted, sitting in the grass like a bunch of kids at camp, all four women took turns telling stories and leaving an impression that we won’t soon forget. Online they describe themselves as “It’s the Zac Brown Band in miniskirts; the Runaways at a hoedown; the Spice Girls on a whiskey bender.”, and we can’t find a good argument against that.

On stage they make the same impression. Songs like Pony Up and Jim, Jack, Johnnie & Jose are party starters, good times waiting to happen that country music fans can’t help but tap their toes to, at the very least. They perform with the kind of harmony that comes from being friends for years, and not just bandmates. And that’s exactly how it started.

Nice Horse started as an idea on a girls trip to Hawaii, with some songs that the quartet had written, the idea that they could play some local shows and the Calgary Stampede, and perhaps the persuasion of a few umbrella drinks. And boy has it all become bigger than that.

Since that decision to give it a go as a group, Nice Horse has seen their name on festival lineups, on tour with Canadian Music Hall of Famer, Tom Cochrane, on their 2017 EP A Little Unstable, and soon on a brand new album!

Note: That bucket list item… we asked the band who they would love to open for, and Shania Twain came into the conversation very quickly. And as we continued to talk about social media and such, the hashtag #ShaniaNeedsUs was born. So, if you see it online, share it!

They’ve also gone all in on social media, sharing their lives and adventures with fans as often as they get the chance. And they told us that they love it. To them, the idea of taking a quick photo or video of what they’re up to is natural, it’s something they would be doing if they were just hanging out and hadn’t decided to put the band together. In fact, when we asked the ladies what they’d like us to pass on to the internet in this post, one of the things they mentioned was their social media channels. So, if you’re looking for a good follow, check ‘em out.

Nice Horse Facebook
Nice Horse Twitter
Nice Horse Instagram

Note: Our personal favourite interviews include a lot of laughing and sharing of stories that weren’t planned going in. And our time with Nice Horse at Boots & Hearts was exactly that.

Listening to Nice Horse was a treat. As a band they’ve got it going on, their sound is full and tight, they compliment each other very well, and they have that thing that makes them performers that you want to watch. If we had to guess, we’d tell you we’ll be seeing the Alberta foursome back in Ontario for B&H again.

Listen for Pony Up on your favourite country music radio station, and be ready for that debut full-length album on September 8, 2017!

Boots and Hearts 2017 - Nice Horse

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.


Boots & Hearts Lineup Additions

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!

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