For the second last time this year, I boarded the 525 to Glasgow on Monday night, chaperoned by a somewhat reluctant Boy Child. We were headed to my favourite venue, the O2 ABC, and, much as he loves it too, the prospect of an evening of country/southern rock wasn’t really doing it for him.
The fact it was raining didn’t help….
So, who were we braving the elements to see? The Cadillac Three from Nashville, Tennessee.
We joined the rapidly growing queue outside the venue (gotta love Boy Child’s O2 Priority) around 6.30 and we waited….and waited. Doors were due to open at 7pm….. 7pm arrived and the doors remained tightly shut. So we waited…and waited. A few minutes later a member of the venue’s staff came out to apologise for the delay, explaining that they were running behind schedule and were still finishing off sound checking. Didn’t these guys realise it was cold and wet out there!
Eventually we were allowed to enter..hallelujah!
There was only one support act for the evening – The Brothers Osborne from Deale, Maryland. Accompanied by their touring musicians ( not sure it’s fair to say backing band), TJ and John Osborne almost instantly had the growing (damp) crowd on side. It was clear that a lot of their fans had braved the rain to arrive early to hear their set. Personally, I felt they suffered a little from a lack of interaction with their fellow musicians. Don’t get me wrong, their seven song set delivered the goods and they did a sterling job as a support act but there was something missing for me.
John Osborne cuts a striking figure in his Stetson and the pair share the spotlight fairly. There’s a lovely warm tone to TJ’s vocals but the lack of warmth on stage detracted from it for me.
The Brothers Osborne rounded their set off with It Ain’t My Fault from their album Pawn Shop and had achieved their objective for the evening – everyone was singing and clapping along.
Suitably warmed up and dried off (there was a distinct whiff of dampness in the air), the capacity crowd patiently waited for TC3 to take to the stage.
The sell out show was the final date in their Long Hair Don’t Care tour and their final show of 2017.
The lights dimmed, blue light swathed the stage and their “Pulp Fiction” intro tape played as TC3 took to the stage. With a little flourish, TC3 paused then opened their set with fan favourite Peace Love And Dixie. Every toe in the room was tapping and, by the first chorus, the fans were in fine voice.
There’s no frills with these boys from Tennessee. No tricks. Nothing fancy just good honest, live, southern/country rock and beer! First time I’ve seen mic stands with cupholders for beer. Brilliant!
I also don’t think I’ve ever seen a front man change guitars as often as Jaren Johnston does. It’s an impressive collection!
TC3’s twenty one song set covered almost their entire catalogue of music.
They pulled out all the stops for this final show of the tour, playing a brilliant version of Hank And Jesus from their current album, Legacy, Bury Me In My Boots and Drunk Like You.
Mid-set, Jaren slowed things down a little, explaining to the fans that he was really looking forward to getting home to his wife and baby son, before dedicating the beautiful Running Red Lights to her. Love this song!
TC3 followed this with the fantastic I’m Southern and I’m Rockin’. We sure were!
Next it was lap steel maestro Kelby Ray’s turn to shine as he played an impressive solo, including the intro to ACDC’s Thunderstruck. Stunning playing! What struck me as nice here was that his band mates didn’t stray too far off stage at this point but hung about watching him. Jaren, beer in hand, wandered back on stage and sat down at the side to listen. It was heart warming to see this show of TC3 brotherhood.
A couple of songs later, TC3 slowed the mood down to deliver a solid version of the sultry Take Me To The Bottom. Smouldering…
One of the highlights for me was Dang If We Didn’t, also from Legacy. I’ll confess, this song has been my guilty “in the car alone singalong song” for the past few weeks. From the passionate singing by the Glasgow fans, I’ve perhaps not been alone in this! Great live party song. Awesome stuff!
White Lightning and Days of Gold rounded out the main body of the set.
After a short break, TC3 were back out for a two song encore comprising of American Slang and The South.
By the time TC3 left the stage for the final time for 2017 we were all from The South at heart.