The Billings Outpost

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Sawyer Brown

After the band gained national attention by winning Star Search in 1983, Sawyer Brown’s career hit the ground running. To date, the band has 20 studio albums and more than 50 singles – which had endless airtime – that entered the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Songs.
Along with special guests Bucky Beaver and the Ground Grippers, Sawyer Brown headlines this year’s Homesteader Days at Homesteader Park (five miles east of Huntley on U.S. 312) at 7 p.m. Friday.
Saturday’s events include a parade, carnival games, bingo and a craft show and sale with fireworks at dusk. Jessica Lechner, Casey Ruff and The 2 Geezerz and Hannah will provide live music starting at 6 p.m.
Tickets are $25 in advance and are available at Shipton’s, R&R Trading Post, Project Merc, Radio Shack in Red Lodge and Ace Hardware in Columbus.

Restless Heart
After creating and performing original music for more than 25 years, Restless Heart’s five original band members are still going strong with their newly released limited edition Silver Anniversary CD, “25 and Live.”
Yet it was the band’s self-titled first CD in 1985 that brought a new, contemporary sound to Nashville. Instead of depending solely on the sounds of country, Restless Heart became one of the first bands to blend the sounds and techniques of country, pop and rock music. In doing so, they achieved national success, with four straight gold albums, six No. 1 hits and nine in the Top Ten.
In addition, Restless Heart’s innovative style influenced some of today’s most popular country acts, including Brad Paisley, Rascal Flats and Little Big Town.
During their summer tour, Restless Heart will make two stops in Montana. After a performance at Bones Brewing at 8:30 p.m. Sunday, the band will travel on to Great Falls for a concert at Machinery Row two days later.

Balthrop, Alabama

Balthrop, Alabama is a band that, for many reasons, turns heads. For example, the 10 band members theatrically perform concerts “dressed as the aw-shucks residents of a fictional Southern town,” as one commentator put it.
In addition, the lyrics to the band’s original indie rock tunes are often drenching with satire. In the song “God Loves My Country,” lead male vocalist Pascal Balthrop delivers these lyrics in a stoic and crisp manner: “God loves my country more than yours/ he’s on my side/ and he’s ready to roar/ and he wants you to die.”
In “Explode,” the band’s sense of humor surfaces as Lauren Pascal’s sweet and inviting voice warns that the world is going to explode and destroy everything.
Originally formed in Brooklyn, New York, by Alabama-native sibling songwriters Pascal and Lauren Balthrop, Balthrop, Alabama is a self-described small town band that sings “songs about love, dead people, and dead people in love.”
The many band members play horns, drums, acoustic guitar, accordion, percussion and sing, all the while dancing around a usually crowded stage. The musical creation is curiously fresh. With catchy rhythms and mellow yet fully energized melodies, this band shares its talent equally between the pleasant coupling of male and female vocals and accomplished instrumentals.
Balthrop, Alabama is touring cross-country in July to promote the band’s newest releases, “Subway Songs” and “Cowboy Songs” on End Up Records. The band put out a news release saying it would stop in Billings on Tuesday for a performance at Bones Brewing. However, Eric Grider at Bones said the venue wasn’t able to host the show. The band’s website now shows the concert at the Railyard Ale House, but it still isn’t listed on that website. Keep an ear open.

Kjersten Olsgaard can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Copyright 2012 Wild Raspberry Inc.

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