Courtesy of WCOL
With a new album, record label and producer, Montgomery Gentry is going back to the music they started with.
Montgomery Gentry will be headlining WCOL’s Country Jam 2011 Friday at 7 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center with special guests Steve Holy and Sonia Leigh.
Vocalists Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry make up the two-man country band. They signed to Columbia Records (Sony Music Entertainment) in 1999 and went on to produce five albums with more than 20 chart singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts, including five No. 1 hits.
After leaving Columbia Records in 2010, the band joined Average Joe’s Entertainment in 2011 to record their new album, “Rebels On The Run.”
“Our deal with Sony was up and we just decided it was time to part ways,” Gentry told The Lantern in an email. “There had been so much change over there the 10 years we were there and they have a lot of new artists that they need to give attention to that we just knew it was time.”
Average Joe’s is a breath of fresh air for the duo.
“They literally told us to go make a Montgomery Gentry record and that’s just what we did,” Gentry said in the email.
“Rebels On The Run” brings Montgomery Gentry fans back to the beginning with the help of music producer Michael Knox, who has helped build other big names such as Jason Aldean.
“Oh I think Michael just let us be Montgomery Gentry,” Montgomery said in the email. “He helped us get that sound back that we sort of started with, back with (the duo’s first album) ‘Tattoos & Scars.’ He helped us find those songs that we relate to and the people buying our records can relate to.”
With their new record having a little bit of a newer sound , but still having the edginess like the first two or three records they put out, the duo just wants fans to enjoy it.
“We want them to put it in their CD player and literally wear it out listening to it,” Gentry said in the email.
Montgomery echoed that statement.
“Man, we just really loved making it and I think you can tell that when you hear it,” he said. “And it has some kick-you-in-the-ass stuff on there, some party songs which we’re known for and even a couple of love songs.”
Despite Grammy nominations and winning Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music awards, Eddie and Troy’s induction into the Grand Ole Opry in 2009 means the most to them.
“That was just totally awesome,” Montgomery said in the email. “My dad always said, you hadn’t made it until you get to be a member of the Opry and he was right. I think that was definitely the highlight so far of me and T’s career.”
Montgomery Gentry remains in touch with its working class roots and mean it when they say, “With us is what you see is what you get.”
“It just is,” Montgomery said in the email. “We’re just country boys from Ky. We might live in bigger houses than we used to but I think we’re the same people we started out as and that helps us relate to our fans and what we sing about.”
Although this is her first Country Jam concert, Morgan Hamelberg, a third-year in fashion and retail studies, has already seen Montgomery Gentry three times.
“I am excited for the show in general but a little upset it is inside and is small,” Hamelberg said.
Country Jam in past years has been held at Germain Amphitheater and Crew Stadium with a number of various artists.
“Their (Montgomery Gentry) shows are always fun though,” Hamelberg said. “Eddie’s outfits are always ridiculous.”
For the future, Montgomery and Gentry just want to keep making music and playing for their fans.
“I think we both just love that rush of being on stage,” Montgomery said in the email. “That party never gets old. And there’s always a party when we’re around!”
“Rebels On The Run” is due out on Oct. 18.