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{Off The Cuff} Drew & Rodney in Idaho: Payette Brewing Company

When the opportunity presented itself to have Drew Kennedy and Rodney Hayden play in Boise, I had to make it happen. I honestly said yes before I even asked my brother if we could use his brewery as the venue. Thank goodness that worked out but I had plenty of tricks up my sleeve if necessary because I was determined to not let this opportunity slip away.

Drew, his wife Holly and Rodney arrived in Boise in their packed Honda Element and gained twenty new fans and friends instantly. The “set” was bare. Two stools in an empty warehouse and lawn chairs scattered about. As they tuned and warmed up, we sampled the latest from Payette Brewing and chatted about Texas and the current state of the music industry but as soon as they started strumming and singing, the world stopped. I was so nervous about the sound in an empty warehouse but the acoustics were incredibly beautiful. No amps, no microphones, it was an organic music experience.

The juxtaposition of Drew and Rodney works incredibly well. The nuances between their styles mix and blend nicely. Drew has a knack for storytelling and weaves incredible tales with clever lyrics. As stunning example is “We’ve All Got Our Marks to Make” (written with Walt Wilkins) relating events about George Washington and Hank Williams Sr. Rodney has an old soul, troubadour air about him. I particularly enjoyed Rodney’s song “More Wishes Than Dimes”, inspired by late night car rides with his wife. The lyrics to this and all of his songs are insightful and could have been written with the great country stars of the past. The songs Drew and Rodney have written make you want to hit rewind and play them again to try and get a grasp on what the lyrics are saying. When a songwriter gets into your head and gets you to spend the time thinking they’ve got a gift. Drew and Rodney are undoubtedly gifted.

I noticed that moment of awe in almost everyone that was present. It’s a special thing when people find music that speaks volumes and has the power to stick with you. Drew and Rodney have a great thing going and I’m surprised more people haven’t caught on. Thank goodness they took the chance to venture out West and made a stop in Boise!

~Sheila Francis

Sheila is a huge music fan currently living in Idaho but on her way to Texas. She’s done lots of work with our friends Music Fog and we can’t wait for her to be in Texas to get more involved in music!

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