High Valley – Live Concert Review

image1 (1).JPGMoonshine Beach hosts an array of artists from all over the United States. Some country, some rock n roll, and some that play a little of everything. This last Saturday night, they hosted Canadian duo, High Valley. The venue, located on a main street in Pacific Beach is well known for the young, college crowd who like to dance, get drunk on Bud Light and get rowdy. It’s tough to come in as an original act on a Saturday, keep the audience’s attention and pack the dance floor. High Valley did not disappoint.

The dance floor was busy, and in a room that boasts a capacity of 1000, it was nearly full. Kudos to Moonshine Beach and their staff for making the room comfortable, with excellent service and security to handle that size of a crowd. The entire show, which ran just under 80 minutes held the audience from start to finish. In addition to talented good-looking musicians and vocalists, Brad and Curtis Rempel are showmen. Even their few minutes of dance competition talk to pick who would win some of their merch was well executed, and entertaining. They remind me of a classier version of another country duo that I have seen in the past…… This crowd, whether they initially came there as High Valley fans or not, definitely left there as one. “Make You Mine” was a crowd favorite and even after the band was finished, the crowd insisted on an encore. All in all, it was a great night of great music.

So who is High Valley?

High Valley is a Canadian country music duo from Blumenort, Alberta, a small community near the hamlet of La Crete. The band is composed of brothers Brad and Curtis Rempel. Bryan Rempel was a member until March 2014.  In October 2015, High Valley signed to Atlantic Nashville.  Shortly after that, the single “Make You Mine” was released to United States country radio. It debuted at number 56 on the U.S. Country chart.

If you haven’t checked out their music yet, please make sure to support them and visit their website.

 

 

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Spotlight on Precision Videos in Nashville!

logo_only_white_backgroundWe recently had the pleasure of meeting Kevin Ray of Precision Videos when we had a request for photo and video work. Kevin was professional, punctual and delivered quality work.

Kevin describes his company as “Precision Videos is a special event video and editing service with professional quality at prices that won’t stress you out.” We couldn’t agree more. Working with Kevin was a simple process and he delivered in a timely manner.

Take a look at his website for some sample videos and contact information.

 

New Country Artist Review & Spotlight on Matt Van Fossen!

We are always so excited when we stumble upon a new artist to review. Recently, we were recommended to check out Matt Van Fossen, a country artist who released his newest single called “BOOM.”

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So who is Matt Van Fossen? His biography on his website states the following:

Imagine the rush of performing your new single to more than 80,000 country music fans on the main stage at ‘Jamboree In The Hills’, one of the top music festivals in the country. Afterwards, you might exchange niceties with superstar Tim McGraw before he goes on stage to rock the crowd. Ohio native Matt VanFossen doesn’t have to imagine because this is his new reality….

With the release of his new EP, “BOOM,” VanFossen is taking his career to exciting new levels. The hard-driving title track is the first single and has already become a fan favorite. It recently won West Virginia-based radio station 97.9 WKKW’s fan-voted “Smackdown” for the maximum of four days straight, beating out new singles from artists such as Dolly Parton and Colt Ford.

The EP follows the breakout success of 2012’s full-length “I Didn’t Come Here to Lose.” Two singles from the album (“Almost Stopped Dreaming” and “This Time Around”) managed to break the Top 100 on the Mediabase country charts. A third single, “A Woman’s Words,” was listed as one of the Top 25 fan-voted songs on Nashville-based Internet radio station NIXA. In addition, his ‘Jamboree’ performances were broadcasted to TV viewers across the Ohio Valley and he received coverage on local newscasts.

The success of the album eventually allowed VanFossen to get a high-profile booking at Nashville’s legendary Douglas Corner Cafe, a renowned venue for both emerging and established songwriters/performers.

“It was a surreal experience to be in a room full of tourists and peers in Nashville. Then, to be singing my music in-the-round with three other artists was unbelievable,” he says. “To have all the talent there recognize me for my voice was just killer. They all thought I was from there. I’ll never forget that.”

During his short career, VanFossen has shared the stage with national recording artists including David Nail, Craig Campbell, Brooks & Dunn, and more. In 2013, he was asked to become one of the main stage artists at the Ohio-based‘Jamboree in the Hills’ festival. For the past two years, he has opened up for the likes of Neal McCoy, Aaron Tippin, and The Oak Ridge Boys.

The newly released “BOOM” EP aims to cement his status as a hit-maker with a voice that grabs your attention and refuses to let go. Mike Ofca produced the project at Innovation Studios in Steubenville, Ohio.

“Mike has this way of turning everything into ear candy. He pays attention to the details and is always listening to see what to add to it to make the song better than it already is,” VanFossen says.

The EP is available at all digital outlets and is distributed by TuneCore. It contains five songs, including “She’s Just Like That” and the feisty “Close If It Ain’t It.” VanFossen says “She’s Just Like That” is his favorite on the project and the song helped him realize the album’s theme.

“The ‘BOOM’ EP is all about the expression of intense feelings. I was listening to “She’s Just Like That” in the car today and thought to myself, ‘you never hear a song from a male artist that talks about love in such an extreme way’ …,” he says. “The song is a way for a guy to say how intense his love is. It gets your attention but in a different way than ‘BOOM.’ It’s like a summer breeze.”

Fans can also expect to hear more about the relationship he sang about on the emotional “Leave Me” from the last album. While “Leave Me” was about a deteriorating relationship that no one had the guts to end, the musical sequel is more of a hopefulcoda. “Get To You” picks up the story after the girl is gone and the guy is forced to move on.

“I remember hearing the song and thinking ‘I know there’s somebody out there that will relate’ …,” he says. “It was the last song we cut vocals on and I thought to myself, ‘put yourself in the place of what you would be like if you found somebody that finally made you forget all the pain and suffering you’ve been through in your life.’”

If it sounds like VanFossen knows a thing or two about heartache, it’s because he experienced it early on. The artist released his first album in 2009 and had a regional hit with “Time Ain’t What It Used To Be.” The song made it to #76 on Wheeling, W. Va. based radio station WOVK’s 2010 year-end countdown and he was named the second most played local artist. Station manager Jim Elliot declared, “Remember this man’s name because you’ll be hearing a lot more of it in the future.”

Then tragedy struck just as his career began to take off. VanFossen’s beloved mother Dot passed away suddenly due to a stroke. Her death was jolting and almost caused him to give up on his dreams. He recalls feeling broken after leaving the hospital and contemplating the end to his career. “…But then I turned on the radio and my song was playing. Then, I knew in my heart that was a sign from Mom to keep doing this,” he says.

Fast forward to 2014 and VanFossen is revisiting his signature song with a newly recorded version created especially for “BOOM.” He calls the track the centerpiece of his music.

“It was the first song that I had on the radio and the only song my mom and I heard on the radio together. It’s a timeless song and I feel now at 30, I’ve lived so much life. I feel like every step of the way, it becomes more of my signature song,” he says. “Now’s the time to bring out a song like this into the world. Everybody’s reminiscing about when life was simple. It’s a way of remembering your innocence.”

Whether he’s performing a hard-driving rocker such as “BOOM” or a heartbreaking ballad like “Get To You,” VanFossen’s live shows are not to be missed. His voice is often compared to artists such as Garth Brooks, Rascal Flatts, and Blake Shelton. Not bad company for an artist that continues to forge his own path as an independent artist.

“I want people to know that I am a genuine, driven, hard-working artist that cares about them and wants to interact,” he says. “I’m passionate about music. It’s part of every waking moment of my life. It’s a powerful thing. It can help you recover from sadness or help you celebrate happiness. I don’t know what my life would be without music.”

So, what did the Cre8tive Team think of Matt Van Fossen and his single?

Paul –  Matt’s EP on Reverbnation starts out with “BOOM.” Right out of the gate is high energy and in your face country music. The next song “Close If It Ain’t It” is a rock’n song but with more of a country feel to it. If you want to start your Friday night out rockin,’ Matt delivers it with a punch! As the tracks go on, Matt starts to show his voice as a country singer/writer that shines through on “She’s Just Like That”, and “Get to You.” I look forward to hearing these on country radio. “I Didn’t Come Here To Lose” is a great anthem for all of us with no plan “B” ! “Leave Me” is a great song and Kelly Clarkson would make a great duet partner for this track. Matt has a great voice that is not like everybody else right now.  That’s refreshing with today’s all about BroCountry going on. His stand out songs and style of music will be a great to hear in country music and on the radio down the road as Matt VanFossen grows into a great artist. I made sure that I put Matt’s EP in my car and drove around the town.. The result was driving a little too fast, and found myself singing along with it!  So for me, that makes for a great EP and a great start to Matt’s career as a country artist.

Kimberley – I absolutely agree with Paul when it comes to Matt Van Fossen. Stand outs for me would be “Leave me” which definitely would make a great duet with Kelly Clarkson or even country newbie Lucy Hale. Matt delivers solid vocals on all of his tracks and has a unique voice that isn’t really similar to another artist on the radio at the moment. His style of country is a mixture of traditional country and rock and vaguely reminds me of some of the best story telling songs from the 90’s with a modern flair. This is so great considering all of the bro country going on right now and the lack of story telling and creative songs on the radio these days. I definitely think that Matt’s voice and songs will do well on the radio and with his fans. Country music needs this right now. “Boom” is a hard rocking country song that I like, but it’s definitely not my favorite. It sounds a little too much like the other songs that I don’t really care for on the radio at the moment, but it’s catchy and I definitely think is going to be very popular with the radio stations and at shows. I think that Matt is definitely on his way to being a household name!

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To learn more about Matt Van Fossen, please find him at the following places:

Facebook

Twitter

Reverbnation

 

 

Cre8tive Reviews Interviews Frankie Ballard at Jugfest 14!

One of our favorite things to do is get to know the artists we work with. One of those artists is Frankie Ballard. Not only is Frankie a talented singer, and musician but he’s really just a cool, class act type of guy. In 2010 Ballard released his first single “Tell me you get lonely,” followed by “A buncha girls” in 2011 but they didn’t quite take off as well as he had hoped. He went back into the studio, regrouped and about four years later came back with the #1 hit “Helluva Life.” Since then it seems the sky is the limit for Frankie. We have really enjoyed seeing his career grow, and have been truly honored to work with him at a few different events. The last two events we worked with him at were the House of Blues Event in San Diego, and the more recent Jugfest hosted by 106.7 KJUG in Visalia, California May 31st.

Frankie Ballard rocks the House of Blues in Downtown San Diego (credit: Paul Breski Photography)

Frankie Ballard rocks the House of Blues in Downtown San Diego
(credit: Paul Breski Photography)

Frankie’s high energy set featured 9 songs plus a segment where he brought a few kids onstage to help him sing “Old Time Rock’n Roll” by Bob Seger.  He started his set with “This is how I feel about you” as he sat on bar stools, but that didn’t last long as he kicked it into high gear and got the crowds energy levels up.  His #1 single “Helluva Life” and his new single “Sunshine and Whiskey” were crowd favorites. We caught up with Frankie at the event, and had a few questions for him.

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We want to wish Frankie Ballard continued success on his musical journey, and encourage you to support his music and go see him live! You definitely will not be disappointed. He is one of those artists that sounds just as good, if not better, than they do on the radio.

To learn more about Frankie please visit his website.

Eric Paslay rocks Bullfrogs Bar and Grill – exclusive concert coverage

Bullfrogs Bar and Grill (credit: P Breski)

Bullfrogs Bar and Grill (credit: P Breski)

 

It wasn’t a “Friday night” but the crowd didn’t mind when Eric Paslay played a small bar called Bullfrog’s in Kingsburg Ca. Country radio station 102.7 FM The Wolf hosted the event.  Eric met some of his fans backstage through the meet and greet and took time with each fan to sign & pose for pictures. Eric then took the stage for his acoustic performance. The crowd went wild as excited fans delighted in this up close and personal show.

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Eric played songs from this current self-titled CD “Eric Paslay” and also sang some songs that he has co-wrote with the likes of Jake Owen’s “Barefoot Blue Jean Night”, Eli Young Band’s “Even If It Breaks Your Heart”, and Love & Theft’s “Angel Eyes.” All of which were number 1 singles on the country charts. He has written Rascal Flatts single “Rewind” that just went #1. The crowds favorites where “Friday Night & “Song About A Girl” which is his current single.

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His current CD showcase’s feelings of joy, faith and all around good times. Another favorite of ours was “She don’t love you,” a song that evokes pure and raw emotion. His vocals were spot on, and powerful and his acoustical performance was not one to miss. Plus, he has a sweet beard.

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To learn more about Eric Paslay, please visit his Official Webpage.

Frankie Ballard Rocks the House of Blues in San Diego

Frankie Ballard (credit: P Breski photography)

Frankie Ballard
(credit: P Breski photography)

It wasn’t Saturday night, and I didn’t have a six-pack – but this big star was most definitely shining on the small town world of what’s known as the House of Blues main stage in downtown San Diego. Let me start off by saying that I love shows here at this venue, because of the personal, and intimate vibe from this stage even though is standing room only. It was an all ages show, and from the minute it started I knew this was gonna an amazing show.

John from 97.3 Kson introduced the opening band, Brodie Stewart band was a rockin mix of country rock. The lead singer channeled his inner Jason Aldean with his sound, and wardrobe. The rest of the band seemed to enjoy the black rocker style (with designs on it) shirts that stayed open and showed off their man cleavage. The ladies loved it, and they sounded amazing! It was great that after their show they headed over to the merch table and spent the time to meet with their fans.

Before they were finished, Frankie held a meet and greet backstage with a handful of fans who were lucky enough to meet him. I was one of those people, in addition to one of Cre8tive Reviews other team members who was the photographer for the show. The main thing I noticed about Frankie is that not only is he just a beautifully put together man (good lookin) but his personality is equally as wonderful. He spent the time to make everyone feel comfortable, took photos with the fans, signed autographs and encouraged his younger fans to follow their dreams. Truly a class act.

His professionalism carried over to his performance onstage where he commanded the stage, and the attention of the audience from the minute he stepped out there. His songs were rocking, his vocals strong and his sense of humor showed through in a few of his remarks. When he spoke of where he was originally from and no one knew, he made it a point to mention that’s where Pop Tarts are made.

Frankie Ballard rocks the House of Blues in Downtown San Diego (credit: Paul Breski Photography)

Frankie Ballard rocks the House of Blues in Downtown San Diego
(credit: Paul Breski Photography)

After the show, what impressed me the most is that Frankie went to his merch table, and met with fans. He didn’t just meet with a handful of fans, but he literally had half to 3/4 of the entire crowd in line to meet him, take photos and get autographs and he stayed all the way through the end to make sure he met every single person. What a great guy, who genuinely cares about his fans, and his music. I definitely will see him again when he’s back in the Southern California area, and you should too – because country music needs more artists like this. So, thank you Frankie Ballard for an amazing show, and for making this one Helluva Night!

You can find more information about Frankie, and catch a show by visiting his Official website.