Corey Smith – Tickets – The Sinclair – Cambridge, MA – March 1st, 2018
Thu, March 1, 2018
Doors: 8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pmThe Sinclair
$20 advance / $22 day of show
This event is 18 and over
The Sinclair is general admission standing room only. Tickets available at AXS.COM, or by phone at 855-482-2090. No service charge on tickets purchased in person at The Sinclair Box office Wednesdays-Saturdays 12-7PM.https://www.sinclaircambridge.com/event/1605038/
"A lot of start-up acts are using fan-funded programs to finance their record. That's what my whole career has been: Kickstarter before Kickstarter. When my fans show up and buy a ticket and a t-shirt, they're investing in what I'm doing," says Corey. "It's my responsibility to invest it wisely and give them the best album I can. That's what led me to While the Gettin' Is Good."
It's also what led him to Stegall, who has produced such radio heavyweights as Alan Jackson and Zac Brown Band. It was the producer's track record, country-music experience and easy-going nature that convinced Corey that he was the man to refine his signature acoustic sound. "Keith knows how to make country records," he says, "but I wanted to make my kind of country record and he understood that immediately. He simply wanted to get us comfortable in a studio environment so we could do what we do onstage every night. For me, it was very liberating to be able to focus solely on performing and not be burdened by a lot of the decision-making and drilling down that goes into producing. It was the first time I was able to go into the studio and focus on what I do best. Keith was there to handle the rest."
A collection of 12 songs, While the Gettin' Is Good was written entirely by Corey. As such, it's a deeply personal album, one that explores themes of love, hometown pride and even personal discovery. A close relative inspired one of the record's highlights, "Bend," about learning how to adapt to what life throws at you.
"I wrote 'Bend' about a family member who was struggling with issues and I realized through writing this song that I was also talking about myself at the same time," says Corey, who scored a Top 20 album with The Broken Record in 2011. "So that song really hits home."
Still, the album stands as the Jefferson, Georgia, native's most upbeat. Especially on the nostalgic "Pride," a bouncing look back at Corey's high school days, from pep rallies to game day. His children attend the same school he did and together they often attend high-school football games, where the one-time social studies teacher sees friendly faces from his past.
"I remember sitting up in the stands going, 'Man, this is so cool.' I'm so glad we decided to stay here and let my kids be a part of this tradition," he says. "'Pride' summarizes who I am and even how my career has developed."
Likewise, album opener "Don't Mind" coasts along with a New Orleans vibe, full of fiddle and clarinet. A fun, happy song, it sets the tone for the record and pays tribute to the things we all gladly bear when we're in love. It also epitomizes Corey's current worldview.
"I have a 2006 truck that runs great, so I don't need a new truck. I don't have much time to get on a big lake, so I don't need a bass boat. I could have bought some really cool stuff with the money that I spent on this record, but I didn't, because I'm happy," he says. "It's a privilege to be able to do something like this, finance it myself and not have anyone telling me how my music needs to sound."
Nonetheless, Corey has hit on the perfect song for today's country radio: the approachable ballad "Taking the Edge Off." It's a road-weary travelogue, like Bob Seger's "Turn the Page" or Zac Brown Band's "Colder Weather," about the loneliness of touring and how people who travel combat such feelings.
"It captures a certain mood that we go through, especially in the winter. It's really a grind, it gets cold and lonely, and you're taking the edge off with a drink," he admits. "I remember being in Omaha and it was cold as hell. I worked on that tune throughout the day and night there and every time I hear it, I am transported back to that time."
Now, however, Corey is focused squarely on the future. As the new album title suggests, he's ready to make a determined grab at country's brass ring while the gettin' is good. And with Keith Stegall and Sugar Hill Records behind him, the gettin' has never been better. As the perseverant Corey is fond of saying, "There is more than one way to skin a cat in country music."
"I always dreamed of being able to make a record like this. I wanted to explore all the possibilities of a song and work with a producer who was among the best and who could teach me," he says. "What makes me different is that I write all these songs, and I write them from the heart. I've lived them."
Which is exactly why his fans are willing to go along for the ride and invest so much in an artist who speaks to their way of life. To Corey, While the Gettin' Is Good is his way of opening up his heart, along with his wallet, and paying them back.
"I'm going to take the goodwill they've given me and continually invest it into making better and better records that reflect who I am and my vision," he says. "They've entrusted me with a lot, so I'm trying to be the best steward I can be."
“You can help me Mr. Dave, I have so many,” she says looking with wide, innocent eyes toward her manager when pressed to quantify her collection. “Stryper. I just went on tour with them, it was awesome. I wear my Stryper shirt a lot. Some of my other favorite shirts are Bon Jovi, Loverboy, Lucinda Williams, Jason Isbell … ”
Yes, she calls her manager Mr. Dave and her agent Mr. Jay – that’s kind of her thing, recognizable by anyone raised in the south. But she says their name with respect and reverence instead of the sass and flare one would expect from a girl who prefers leather and denim over dresses and heels, just like she prefers a rowdy crowd dancing on a bar top over a seated one golf-clapping after each song.
Don’t be totally fooled — Tyndall isn’t a rocker hiding in a cowgirl town. Her Eastern North Carolina accent and penchant for aching love songs gives her away as a grounded country thoroughbred. The newly released “Everything Is Texas” is a heartbreak song so deep it nearly made the guy she wrote it about cry.
Each night on the road before playing "Everything Is Texas", Kasey Tyndall tells the story behind the song and how the guy she loved, a Texas-native, just disappeared on her. No explanation - just up and left. “His face … I almost felt bad for him,” she says with guilty laughter as she recalls the night he turned up in her crowd and planted himself front row.
The heartfelt song was penned with the help of Lena Stone and Lainey Wilson.
Tyndall’s journey to Nashville was accelerated in 2014 when she won a radio station contest to sing “We Were Us” with Keith Urban. Opportunities came quickly after that late summer performance, including signing with WME’s Jay Williams for booking (Eric Church, Luke Bryan, Chris Stapleton, Dierks Bentley). The then college student was greener than new money when she moved to Music City — during her first co-write she had no idea she was working with Doug Johnson (Randy Travis, Lee Brice, Rascal Flatts) until he stepped away and the other writer in the room, Nick Autry, said, “Do you know who that is?”
“Anyone that’s big … I get super nervous,” Tyndall says, the anxiety flushing her face even as she thinks about writing with some of the veterans and legends she’s sat down with. She’s has opportunity to be nervous a lot lately. Neil Mason from the Cadillac Three, Driver Williams from Eric Church’s band and Tommy Cecil are a few of the seasoned writers she’s worked with. A publishing deal with Sony ATV promises to bring more top-end talent to her door. After working with her, Cecil (Luke Bryan, Jake Owen, North Carolina’s Parmalee) agreed to produce her EP due in March 2017.
During a song like “Who I Ain’t”, a song on Tyndall's upcoming EP, the fire inside this fast-rising singer breaks containment. Between songs and offstage, Tyndall couldn’t be more approachable. She’s quiet, but increasingly confident about who she is, and who she ain’t. “I wasn’t the prettiest or most popular or anywhere remotely close to that,” she says recalling high school. Her multiplying fan base appreciates this and her rock anthems have become their anthem.
“You get on social media and you see society saying ‘That’s what you should look like.’ I instead wanna be a voice of ‘Hey it’s totally OK who you are, just like you are.'”
Tyndall did over 100 tour dates in 2016, doing runs with the likes of Kane Brown, Granger Smith, Casey Donahew, and The Cadillac Three... and there appears to be no slowing down in 2017. As Tyndall explains,“I love to sing and perform and I’m thankful for anyone who wants to listen. It’s almost like my fans and I have this team. It’s kinda the ‘Be who you are’ team. And I’m blessed to have the best team in the world.”
52 Church St
Cambridge, MA, 02138