published Friday, June 12th, 2009

Montgomery Gentry brings southern rock to Riverbend


by Laura Galbraith

Fresh off their induction into the Grand Ole Opry, Montgomery Gentry takes the Coke Stage at 9:30 tonight at Riverbend.

Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry made their recording debut in 1999 with the release of the platinum-certified album, "Tattoo & Scars." Since then, they have released five studio albums: "Carrying On," "My Town," "You Do Your Thing," "Some People Change" and, most recently, "Back When I Knew It All."

Named Top New Vocal Duo/Group by the Academy of Country Music in 1999 and Vocal Duo of the Year by the Country Music Association in 2000, Montgomery Gentry has secured a big spot in the Nashville music scene.

"This will be my fourth Montgomery Gentry show that I've personally been involved with, and they're just good guys," said Joe "Dixie" Fuller, the entertainment director for Friends of the Festival. "They're real personable, they're very humble, and they're just a good, party-hard country rock band."

Mr. Fuller said the duo's sound is "kind of like Molly Hatchet meets George Jones," containing an energy that will make festivalgoers want to get out of their chairs and dance.

"They fit our country demographic at Riverbend so well," said Mr. Fuller. "I think it's going to be about as big a night as we've had."

Following the performances of Willie Nelson and Jake Owen, Montgomery Gentry will end the festival's country music selection.

Attendees will hear songs from the duo's latest album as well as some of their most popular, chart-topping hits.

"They just love to play, and the best of the country artists are the guys that love their craft so much that they don't mind where they got to plug up as long as they get to play music," said Mr. Fuller.

After Riverbend, the group will head to Nashville to finish up Fan Fair 2009, one of country music's most popular festivals.

"When we put on Riverbend, it's right in the middle of Fan Fair, and after having been with Clint Black and Alabama and a lot of other country artists during that week, they're really looking for any reason in the world to get away from that for at least one day," said Mr. Fuller. "If you're there for all four or five days, it will just drive you crazy, because it's just one big autograph session. This way they get to come play a bit of music, get their ya-yas out, and then they can go back up and finish their autographs."

IF YOU GO

* What: Montgomery Gentry.

* When: 9:30-11 tonight.

* Where: Coca-Cola Stage.

* Admission: Pins are $37 at the gate.

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