Old Dominion, in the retro tuxes worn for the group's video, "Break Up With Him."

If you go

› What: Old Dominion’s Meat and Candy Tour

› When: 8 p.m. today, Nov. 10; doors open at 7 p.m.

› Where: Track 29, 1400 Market St.

› Admission: $22 in advance, $25 at door (must be 18 or older to attend and provide valid photo ID when entering the venue).

› Phone: 423-521-2929.

› Website:

Did you know?

The lyrics of Old Dominion’s current single, “Song for Another Time,” reference several pop and country hits. It’s become a contest among fans to see how many they can identify. According to lead singer Matthew Ramsey, there are 21.

Long before country music fans knew about Old Dominion, they were singing the band's songs: Kenny Chesney's "Save It for a Rainy Day," The Band Perry's "Chainsaw," Blake Shelton's "Sangria."

But since the release of Old Dominion's debut CD last November, "Meat and Candy," everyone knows their name and music. The album's first single, "Break Up With Him" shot to No. 1 on the Country Airplay charts, and the second release, "Snapback," reached No. 2. Their current single, "Song for Another Time," is No. 11 on Billboard's Top Country Songs and still rising.

Last week, the guys walked the red carpet at the Country Music Association Awards, where they were up for two honors: Best New Artist and Vocal Group of the Year. They didn't win, but they got more airtime being featured in a Chevy truck commercial shot specifically for the awards show than the winners of those categories got for their acceptance speeches.

"It's been insane this past year. Really the past two years have been this crazy whirlwind of a life for us," says Matthew Ramsey, lead singer. The rest of the group is Brad Tursi, lead guitarist; Trevor Rossen, instrumentalist; Geoff Sprung, bass; and Whit Sellers, drummer.

The musicians kicked off their Meat and Candy tour last weekend and make their third tour stop tonight, Nov. 10, at Track 29.

Ramsey explains how they came up with that unusual album title.

"We were getting ready to go into the studio, and we'd been writing songs forever, so we had a pile of songs to go through. We whittled those down to this list we wanted to consider for the album. But I saw the list had a lot of ear candy on it and said we needed songs with a little more meat. We all started laughing about meat and candy, and our producer, Shane McAnally, said, 'You need to call it that.' So 'Snapback' is candy; 'Song for Another Time' and 'Nowhere Fast' are meat," he says.

Before "Meat and Candy" the guys were just trying to make some dough as they wrote songs and played during the 10 years they were in Nashville before getting their RCA record deal.

Ramsey says he and Sellers grew up together in Virginia until Sellers went off to college at James Madison University, where he met Sprung and Tursi.

"I had a band, they formed a band, and we all kind of played the same circuit. One by one we moved to Nashville, and when we were all here, we started playing together. The reason I moved to Nashville and that Trevor and Brad moved down was for songwriting. All three of us were trying to be professional songwriters but also working day jobs."

Ramsey worked for a moving company and a picture-framing business. Tursi was a waiter and played guitar for other singers. Rossen worked at Best Buy.

Ramsey says in hindsight he can see where those songs that became hits for others served their purpose.

"That's how we met Kenny Chesney and got to tour with him, when we wrote 'Save It for a Rainy Day.' In the end it helped to let them go."

Ramsey says the guys have been in the studio working on their second album. In January, they will be opening for Miranda Lambert's tour.

"We love playing music. This tour has been incredible to see fans turn out and sing all the songs with us. We're smiling all the time. We have a lot of chemistry with each other since we're all friends, and that shines in our music and we have a really good time onstage."

Contact Susan Pierce at or 423-757-6284.


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