Since Atlanta-based rock act Drivin N Cryin played its first show in 1985 in Atlanta's 688 Club, they've spent 33 years building a legacy grounded in sharp songwriting, Southern stomp and loud, life-affirming shows.
Influenced by a wide array of musical elements, Drivin N Cryin's name is derived from the eclectic nature of this sound: a little drivin' rock and roll and a little country twang.
Trends have come and gone. Bandmates have done the same. But Drivin N Cryin continues to hit the stage night after night delivering the soundtrack to a self-made rock saga that's still unfolding. Founding members Kevn Kinney and Tim Nielsen have survived the pressures of fame, changing musical landscape, multiple lineup changes and miles of highways to arrive here.
Drivin N Cryin released "Live the Love Beautiful" in June, its first full-length album since 2009's "Whatever Happened to the Great American Bubble Factory."
If you go
* Where: Songbirds Guitar Museum, 35 Station St. (South), 41 Station St. (North)
* For more information: 423-531-2473
MATT HECKLER WITH CASPER ALLEN
* When: 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20 (N)
* Admission: $10 in advance, $12 day of show
OWEDA WITH BIRD DOG JUBILEE
* When: 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20 (S)
* Admission: $10 in advance $12 day of show
DRIVIN N CRYIN WITH BAD SPELL
* When: 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21 (S)
* Admission: $20 in advance, $22 day of show
* When: 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25 (N)
* Admission: $15
Produced by Aaron Lee Tasjan, the new record is an anthemic blast of rock and roll, with Kinney singing about the troubled times of modern-day America, the trials and triumphs of an adulthood logged on the road and the benefits of appreciating the small things in life.
Fans of the band can hear the new music live when Drivin N Cryin's tour stop in Songbirds on Saturday night,
"Live the Love Beautiful" shines a light on the band's revamped roster, with Laur Joamets — an Estonian-born guitarist who moved to America to perform with Sturgill Simpson — joining the ranks of Kinney, bass-playing Nielsen and drummer Dave V. Johnson.
"The album covers all the Drivin N Cryin bases, from acoustic guitar songs to hard-rockin' electric guitars," says Nielsen. "We've got Laur playing slide guitar, too, which we haven't really had on other albums, so this is also a step toward something new."
More than three decades after their formation, Drivin N Cryin is still moving forward, sharpening the legacy that landed them in the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
"We've been fighting to be valid for so long," says Kinney. "All I know is, if you lost your record deal in 1993, would you have spent the next 25 years without a record deal, making your own records, traveling around in a van, playing bars and wherever else you can, just because you believed in what you were doing? Just because you loved it? Because that's what we do. I think we're America's best-kept secret."