Levi Lowrey is an up and coming star in this genre. A multi-talented singer-songwriter out of Georgia, he finds his recording home on Zac Brown’s label, Southern Ground Recordings, Lowrey performed a solid set at the legendary 3rd and Lindsley in Nashville. Backed by a stellar band, one of the great highlights of his show was the performance of “Colder Weather”, a 2012 hit for the Zac Brown Band that was co-written by Lowrey. Lowrey’s version of “Colder Weather” contains a mysterious alternate verse that is not contained in the Brown recording, yet it is arguably the most poignant verse in the song. Levi Lowrey is on the road, and will be back in Nashville on September 27 and 28 for Zac Brown’s Southern Ground Music and Food Festival. He and his band are well worth your time and money, you will be duly entertained at their show.The final act of Saturday night’s festivities at 3rd and Lindsley was an act I had been hoping to see for some time. Mike Farris caught my attention with a performance on Music City Roots with his incredible showmanship, powerful vocal delivery, and positive message in all of his songs. Backed by a large band that included horns, keys and background singers, Farris injected new life in to the club at a late hour when most attendees were fading. Having returned from Spain not long before his performance on Saturday night, Farris gave everyone the last little bit he had left in the tank and the crowd responded by doing the same. A real treat was hearing Farris’ version of the Mary Gautier classic “Mercy Now,” which is sure to be a classic when released. With a positive message in all of his songs, especially with his rendition of “This Little Light of Mine”, Farris sent the attendees of the final showcase night home feeling good, positive and waiting until next year.
However, this was not the end of the Americana music festival. A surprise addition to the festival saw the weekly Nashville Sunday Night’s show, presented a living legend in Americana music with Lucinda Williams concluding her tour at 3rd and Lindsley. This performance, captured via live broadcast on Lightning 100 in town, was a presentation of her debut album which was released 25 years ago. Sounding as strong as she’s ever sounded, Lucinda performed an incredible set that re-visited such classics as “Change The Lock”, “Passionate Kisses” and “The Night’s Too Long”, the latter two which became major hits for Mary-Chapin Carpenter and Patty Loveless respectively. Recognizing the significance of the occasion, Jim Lauderdale raced back from the Rhythm and Roots festival in Bristol, TN for a guest appearance with Lucinda.And so wrapped up another Americana Music Festival in Nashville, Tennessee. It’s a festival like this that really cements the reputation of Nashville as Music City U.S.A. An outstanding lineup was featured and all involved in the organization of this event deserves all the credit in the world. It surely must have been a monumental task. The only challenge that remains is how to top, or at least equal, the quality of performances for next year.