Friday, September 28, 2007

Four Wheelers and Guitars

On Wednesday night, the Renaissance Center in middle Tennessee was packed, and for a good cause. Recording artist Craig Morgan and a few musical guests came back to his native Dickson County to raise the roof for a fundraising benefit.

What were we celebrating? Putting a new awning over an elementary school...making much-needed repairs to another school in the area...contributing to Wounded Warriors, a group dedicated to the needs of our wounded military servicemen and their families...and contributing to Catch a Dream, an organization dedicated to providing terminally ill children with the chance to go hunting and fishing.

I love things like this. Every day we turn on the television or radio and hear the bad things. It's so much sweeter to celebrate the good, isn't it?

For some VIP donors, the day began with a four-wheeler ride. Let me say this: Keeping up with Craig on anything with an engine is next to impossible, so those who took the chance deserve a medal for bravery!

That night was the concert, and it was a gorgeous time. Craig invited Blue County (made up of Aaron Benward and Scott Reeves) and Tracy Lawrence to an in-the-round performance. What great music!

My favorite part of Craig's performance was the new song he wrote, "Looking Forward to Looking Back." It was filled with references to his own life, from being stationed at Fort Campbell to playing the Grand Old Hatchery (a Dickson County tradition!) to talking about his own kids and how quickly they are growing up. A great song for his next album, and I hope it will be a single.

The guys from Blue County are very funny, and were obviously enjoying every minute of being up on stage. The best part? Hearing them talk about their kids, and watching their impromptu jam with Mellencamp's "Little Pink Houses."

Tracy Lawrence is always fantastic -- I think he's got one of the strongest voices in country music. The best part of his performance? Hearing him talk about his reverence for those who blazed the trail in the country music industry, and his emotional rendition of "Paint Me a Birmingham."

One other note...If you live in Tennessee and you haven't made the time to visit the Renaissance Center, you're missing something worthwhile. It's a very intimate, classy venue about thirty minutes outside of Nashville.

Next year's event is going to be bigger, so won't you come join in? Keep an eye on Craig's website for updated information when the time comes.

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