Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz
hree diverse artists performing under the country rubric, who are trying to gain a foothold in the field, joined forces for a good old-fashioned guitar pull. And that may have been the best way for Tyler Rich, Abby Anderson and Travis Denning to showcase their wares.
Rich has enjoyed the most commercial success of the three with his single "The Difference," but they were all equals on this night in a sold-out club in which their efforts live were far more enjoyable than the material each has released. That would be EPs for Rich and Anderson and singles for Denning.
The three sat on stools trading songs and stories with each having one backing musician. At times, they would play or sing on the other's song s or perhaps (in the case of Denning) interject their own (humorous) comments.
None could be considered traditional country by any stretch, but all fit within the very loose parameters of what constitutes country music today.
Rich, a north California native, most closely resembles Garth Brooks. As he sang a number of his songs, one could close their eyes and imagine brooks doing the singing. Rich has a warm, inviting, comfortable voice and delivery.
Anderson, who hails from Dallas, offered the soulful end of the country spectrum. While sitting in the seat, she sure seemed like she wanted to get off of that and move about the stage. She was filled with personality and had a good times vibe about her - even when talking about her parents marriage, which ended after 25 years. At that point, she grew very serious before launching into a song playing the piano for the first and only time this night.
Denning urged Anderson to bring "the sriracha," and she sure answered the call.
Denning, who had a recent semi-hit with "David Alan Parker from Powder Springs" and has penned cuts for Jason Aldean, Justin Moore, Michael Ray and Chase Rice, has a bit of a gritty voice, which he put to good effect. He's got a lot of attitude and feeling in his delivery, while also being a jokester onstage.
Denning proclaimed his affinity for Beantown by citing restaurants and locales he has been over the years. He also made it clear he liked to throw it down on a number of occasions. Fortunately, his music was far better - including his offering of his new single "After a Few" - than the frat boy jokester he presented.
This may have been a one-off for the three, but it presented as a most enjoyable way to see the three and their personalities up close and personal.
They closed out the night together with Brooks' "Friends in Low Places." It was a fun way to close the night, even if Anderson needed a bit of help in getting the words right.
There are no guarantees, of course, of future success, but Rich, Anderson and Denning all contributed to a most entertaining night of music.