This week we'll do things differently and look at three stars in one. The Roots And Boots tour is back on the road. This tour was out a few years ago and it made a grand stop at the Wayne County Fair, a concert I emceed and fans loved it. This tour consists of Aaron Tippin, Collin Raye and Sammy Kershaw, and it will be part of Neon Nights at Clay's Park in August.
These three all had nice chart runs in the 1990's with good success. All three had very loyal fan bases, and all did country from a very different angle and perspective. This tour is a good idea and was very fun to see a few years ago. This is a smart and savvy move serving those who love 90's country which is still popular, and actually going through a real resurgence as young fans have discovered it at last. They debuted the same year and all brought unique gifts to us for a long time. So let's look at all three, no order.
It didn't take long for Aaron Tippin to establish exactly who he was and where he was coming from in life - and in music. His first single You've Got To Stand For Something did that as it was released during the Gulf War in 1991. Tippin charted a lot of songs through the 90's with varying levels of actual chart success. But one thing is absolutely true and fact. His fans, and fans of country in general music LOVED him during his run. I always felt that the passion for his music was far greater than the numbers he achieved on the charts. AND they loved HIM! With good reason, he's a great guy.
First Big Hit (36 Million YouTube Views On This)
Tippin was a traditionalist without any question, and that endeared him right away. His strong, and somewhat nasal voice, similar to Hank Sr, was unmistakable in the 90's and it totally cut through. The first time I played My Blue Angel, my request lines lit up, I'll never forget that. His song choices were spot on for his voice and style and fans loved it. He positioned himself as the Workin' Man's anthem maker and we believed it, because it was true. His stage show where he builds a bike on stage, and gives it away as he sings is legendary. Tippon has six Gold albums and one Platinum. He has three number ones and a decade of charted songs.
Great Song - Fit Him Perfectly
I have worked with Tippin a few times including an hour long broadcast here at WQMX years ago shortly after I took over the morning show. He's a gentleman, and a darn good guy. I have always been a fan. His song, Where The Stars And Stripes And The Eagle Fly was loved by fans being released days after 911 and featured New York City in the video with all money going to the Red Cross.
Fans Love Everything About This
Aaron Tippin, one of country's Good Guys!
Collin Raye like Tippin debuted on the country charts in 1991. His image and style was a more scholarly approach to country. Raye was exceptionally versatile and could sing many different kinds of songs. But I feel if you asked most fans they would lean to his powerful and emotive love ballads. He excelled in that arena and was the preeminent balladeer of the mid 1990's. His slick image was in contrast to the dominant hat acts of the time, but as country does very well, there always seems to be room for a wide variety.
Love, Me (One of the most loved songs of the 90's)
Raye, for about 10 years was consistently in the top ten on the charts with a few going to number one. Many of his songs were used as wedding themes or special occasion songs. But as great of a love song singer as he was, My Kind Of Girl, and That's My Story are fantastic examples of how he could easily handle songs from all across the musical rainbow. His music was timeless and that is always the mark of someone who is truly talented and not just a trendy flavor of the month. His songs still hold up well all these years later.
This Is Among The Reasons He Is Loved
Tons of singles, tons of albums, and millions of fans. Collin Raye made his mark in country's best decade.
Hard Not To Love This Song
I always loved Sammy Kershaw. After a few years of mis-fires, he finally hit in 1991 with the album, Don't Go Near The Water that went platinum. His first big song, Cadillac Style, was instantly loved as it was a top three hit. Kershaw over the course of the 1990's sold millions of albums and had a huge following. Here's a guy who had great success, without a number one song, although he flirted with one many times. Sammy Kershaw always sounded like he was a guy you would know from your hometown and that served him extremely well.
GREAT Debut Single
Kershaw's big, warm and under dogged voice was his calling card. He was so distinct you knew exactly who was on the radio. He picked PERFECT songs to record and release. Listening to him sing, you could visualize who he was, even if you never saw him before. He sang many songs from the stylist perspective, meaning - to me - he got through it, and it was believable and vulnerable. To me, he was a big time breath of very fresh air in the 1990's as we were full of very polished singers who had no shortage of big voiced songs with soaring, high note holding finishes.
Only Sammy Could Pull This Off
Sammy Kershaw was the every-man who sang songs that were fun to listen to. He did something even big singers have a hard time doing. Many of Kershaw's songs are so daring and unique, I can't imagine anyone else singing them, Hard to to.
Big Song, Much Loved
Sammy Kershaw. A true original for sure!
Go to Neon Nights and see these three guys on stage together. It's going to be a treat.
Roots And Boots At The Wayne County Fair - So much Fun!