Saturday, November 2, 2019

Dierks Bentley and Friends -- Hot Country Knights Performed at Joe's Bar in Chicago, To Benefit The Riser Foundation

Dierks Bentley kicked off Sunday night, October 27, 2019, at Joe's Bar on Weed Street in Chicago with, "The Mountain," a pre-Halloween treat for DB Congress members in attendance as it's not very often Dierks plays the title song to his 2018 album 'live' for his fans. 

It was appropriate though, as he sang, "I climbed like hell through the brush and the bramble."  He's come a long way to be in a position to give back in a big way, and the event and Joe's was a benefit for The Riser Foundation--raising over $33,000.

The Riser Foundation was launched in 2006, by Dierks and a handful of passionate Nashville supporters of charitable organizations--mostly to help children and families.  You may remember our blogs from the 10-year run of Miles and Music For Kids, the motorcycle/concert event that benefitted Vanderbilt Children's Hospital, and several children's hospitals around the country.

Over two dozen more organizations have benefitted from the efforts of The Riser Foundation over the years including:

Safe Haven - Spotlighted in Dierks' Riser video

Hospice of the Valley - where Dierks' dad spent his last days

Jordan Sterling Foundation -  Dierks' sang a song he wrote dedicated to his friend.

Music Health Alliance - Dierks was the 2019 spokesperson for Heal the Music Day

California Fire Foundation - Only The Brave movie, "Hold The Light," Granite Mountain Hot Shots

Add $33,042 from the event at Joe's and The Riser Foundation has donated nearly $8 million, supporting more than sick kids, but also homelessness, literacy, education and hunger over the years.

As usual, DB Congress reps were in line early in the day, to be front row for the show that night.  As with most benefits, many folks had bid upwards of $700, donating to the cause, and earning them early entrance--so sadly, the front row spots for hard-core Dierks fans were not meant to be that night.

But in the second row, he still saw us, called us out, pointes to us and proceeded to blame us for having to shake up the set list.

"It's always great seeing you guys here, but you make me have to change things. I was gonna do the same show we did last time I was in town, but I was like, nah...gotta change it up!"

The evening would not be complete without the benefit's namesake song, Riser, at which point the band left the stage and Dierks remained with just his guitar and heartfelt voice:


"I would not do this anywhere else 'cause it could totally wreck the show, but I know I can trust you guys to be cool letting these guys play about 2 or 3 songs.  These guys love 90's country, they're called Hot Country Knights...just give them a chance...

We dare you not to sing along to the catchy Hot Country Knights theme song!

We'll even provide the words.  H-O-T COUNT - RY - KNI - GHT - S!

After a few HCK songs, there was banter between Dierks and his dudes: Where's my band? Where are my guys? Will you guys do a couple of my songs, do you know my stuff?  Yeah--anybody can play your stuff.  Can you zip that?

To be in tune with the Riser benefit theme, we were proud to surprise Dierks early with the new limited edition Flag and Anthem/Desert Son Riser Camo Tshirts* that went on sale to the public the next day.  These tees give 100% of the proceeds to Folds of Honor, to help provide educational scholarships to spouses and children of our fallen and disabled service-members.
*The Camo shirts are currently sold out, but will be back in stock next week! Keep trying the link!

"We believe that there are everyday Risers all around, and it's our obligation to recognize, stand by and support them." - The Riser Foundation website

Donate to The Riser Foundation.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Cajun Congress Member Dies 'Holding On' to Dierks Bentley Memories

I first met Sylvia Silva in 2013, at Dierks Bentley's Last Call Ball 9 in Nashville--one of the Louisiana DB Congress reps known as the Cajun Congress.  I never met her mom, Ramona Ramos, also a DBC rep, but was saddened to read of her passing a few weeks ago.  Sylvia wrote the following tribute to her mom:

I send this ”Thank You” via FB because my Mom Ramona Ramos and I met these amazing people through FB. Many we have never personally met, so it seems fitting to extend my gratitude here.

My Mom loved dancing and MUSIC and we shared many good times centered around just that! I invited my Mom to join DB Congress, Dierks Bentley fan club and Mom easily fell right into the mix! We would join other Congress Members at concerts and meet ups and #DRT’s (Dierks Road Trips). Mom joined in our antics of dressing the part at our #1 celebration parties and wearing matching shirts at concerts, although Mom always added her own little flair to hers!

Mom was lucky enough to land several Meet & Greets with Dierks. She loved her front row seats or front row PIT! Her last front row PIT was at the young age of 73, at Champion Square in New Orleans, LA. She always brought little gifts to hand deliver to Dierks.

During the “I Hold On” campaign, I asked my Mom what does she hold on to and I’ll submit a picture. She took the picture of Jesus off of her wall and held it tight. It is one of my favorite pictures of my Mom. 

At the young age of 70, we brought her grandchildren to Nashville for the CMA Music Fest. We had the week pass which covered a week’s worth of craziness and country music from sun up to well past midnight. We all had a tough time keeping up with Mom! During that week, we landed Last Call Ball 9 tickets. At this very personal concert/fan party, Mom got a better feel of Dierks “the man” rather than “the performer.”  The music pulled her in but the “Dierks” he allows us to know is why Mom thought he was “A Doll." His love and devotion to his family and his faith, his love of country and respect for “Mother Earth” ~ all character traits they shared. She witnessed first hand his commitment to his fans as he stood at the front of Belcourt Theater and met with each person present.

My Dad, myself, my sisters and brother have so much gratitude for the DB Congress not only for extending your condolences, the beautiful plant (#Bentley)and for donating to my Mom’s favorite charities but also for embracing my Mom in the DB Congress and filling my Mom’s life with much love and friendship and MUSIC. We thank all of you and of course “The Dude” for bringing all of us together!  I’m sure my Mom is in Heaven singing... #BeautifulWorld, #LongTripAlone, #IHoldOn #FreeAndEasy, #Home, #Living

Special thanks to:
Cecia Guidry Benoit, Darrell A Benoit, Tracy Walters Carter, Marycoleen Geiger, Sherrie McKenzie Shamon, Nancy Harwood Eaton, Janet Marlborough, Amanda Morris, Nicole Dalton, Heather Ashley, Jenny Bable, Michelle Ly Wilson, Harriett Dickerson Watkins, Keri Nutt, Tom Underberg, Miranda Martinez, Christa Thornton, Mary Lou Greene, Ronna Clark, Jasmine Sanchz, Adrian Taylor, Renèe Glennon, Cheryl Parr, Carrie Srebro and Georgenne Joakim Foley.


Ronna Clark
DB Congress Chair (FL)

Friday, April 12, 2019

Dierks and Knox Live it Up in "Living" Music Video

Released as a single in February, Dierks Bentley's "Living" has been climbing the charts ever since. And it's no surprise, really. This song touches everyone's soul on some level. It's full of heart and life ... a reflection of the man himself. It was only a matter of time until an official music video was released. Goodness, did the team deliver!

Earlier this week, Dierks took to social media to start teasing the video. Dierks, his 5-year-old son Knox, puppies, wave riders, pajama jam sessions ... we knew it was going to be good!

A post shared by Dierks Bentley (@dierksbentley) on

The video follows Dierks and Knox in an epic day of adventure! This is fitting, given the song's focus of making the most of every day and truly living in even the most ordinary moments.

“’Living’ certainly celebrates life’s big moments and adventures, but for me it’s even more about being intentional and present in everyday moments,” Dierks said. “Knox is at that age where he can still find the biggest joy in the smallest things, and that childlike appreciation for life is the spirit I wanted to bring to this video to remind us of difference between just being alive and actually ‘living.’”

So here it is ... living, indeed!

Accompanying this release, People took fans behind the scenes for the making of this perfect video. Take a look here!

You can also see a fan-feature music video Dierks' team released in May 2018 as a series of music videos to promote the album The Mountain.

Dierks and the guys first played this song as a gift to DBCers present at a concert in Las Vegas in December 2017. "I was thinking of everybody here, but definitely these hardcore, hardcore fans standing down here ... this would be my gift to you." I had the honor of being along the stage for that moment, and I can tell you there wasn't a dry eye around me.

This song has touched so many lives. The lyrics and music had much to live up to. This video certainly lives up to the challenge.

Jessica Borrelli
DB Congress Rep, WA

Monday, April 8, 2019

Dierks Was "Travelin' Light" For 2019 ACM Awards

The 2019 ACM Awards had definite "light" moments for Dierks Bentley, including a performance that's being talked about across the country.

The night kicked off in the most perfect of ways, with the ACM social media pages announcing an early win for Dierks and Brothers Osborne. They walked into the event having already won the Music Event of the Year for their "Burning Man" collaboration.

While this doesn't come with an official acceptance speech, Dierks and the guys were quite grateful for the win, and sent out a tweet to say thank you!

(This win is extra sweet after Dierks' earlier interview where he noted his kids always remind him he never wins anything. Not tonight!)

Speaking of the red carpet, Dierks and his wife, Cassidy, looked absolutely stunning (thank you to CMT for this wonderful photo of the Bentleys (right) with Catherine Shepherd and Brandi Carlile (left))!

While Brandi is a Grammy award winning singer, songwriter and producer, many might not have known there were ties between her and Dierks. For those of us who have had The Mountain on repeat for the better part of the last year, her voice is a familiar one gracing our speakers. And DB Congress members were elated to have the chance to see their duet "Travelin' Light" live at the awards show, which Billboard said, in the most positive of ways, that it was "almost as if they were having fun at a karaoke session with friends--just with all-star vocals!"

You can watch their performance here.

Brandi's newest collaboration, Highwomen (a play on the 80s and 90s supergroup Highwaymen which includes Maren Morris, Amanda Shires, Natalie Hemby and Lori McKenna), even gave a Twitter invite to Dierks as an honorary member!

Based on the banter between Dierks and Brandi before the show, it was clear the two love to perform together and they embrace a live show audience. In another interview, they discussed the evening itself was light. As Dierks noted, "There isn't a lot of heaviness to this show. It's just a fun place to be. It's Vegas. It's springtime. It feels pretty good."

As Brandi said of "Travelin' Light" and of Dierks, "I wanted to sing it because I felt [the song] and I felt Dierks' voice so much. I'm a big fan of his humanity, the kind of dad he is, the guy he is, the kind of husband he is. He's just somebody I want to spend a lot more time with."

Perhaps Brandi will "lay it down" again on a future Dierks album? We're ready!

Bonus: This "light" photo was captured at the event, and our DB Congress friends across the pond had a little fun, seeking captions. How would you caption this photo?

Jessica Borrelli
DB Congress Rep, WA

Friday, February 22, 2019

"Living" Released As New Single

It's official--a song very near and dear to many DB Congress members' hearts has been announced as Dierks Bentley's newest single.

First heard as a gift to DBCers present at a Las Vegas concert in December of 2017, the song "Living" quickly became a deep fan favorite.


For this very introspective, self-reflective, heart moving, downright gorgeous song, Dierks put his own pen to paper, personally writing this track with Ross Copperman and Josh Kear.

“The idea for this song started from being on the road and realizing how little ‘living’ we were actually doing out there,” he said. “Whole days would go by where you never leave the bus and all you would see is the back parking lot of the arena. Going to Walgreens was a big deal! That is when the idea was born that there is a true difference between being alive and actually ‘living.’ This song is certainly about big moments in life and adventure … but it’s more about finding the beauty and that feeling in everyday moments. My goal for 2019 is to get outdoors and seek adventure whenever possible while also being fully present and living in even the ordinary moments … whether it be my son’s hockey practice and my girls’ theater performances or sitting around the table having dinner in catering with my band and crew.”

While we can assume there will be an official "Living" music video in the future (not confirmed), this initial video was released before the album, and shares a fan story of truly living.

This might be presumptuous of me, but I, personally, could see this one going all the way to number 1 (which would make it his 19th number-one hit, following his 18th--Burning Man--just a couple weeks ago!). Now, we simply need to help get it there! Call, text, tweet your radio stations so we can share this lyrical gem with radio listeners everywhere.

With a heart full of grateful ...

Jessica Borrelli
DB Congress Rep, WA

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Dierks and Del, A Front Row Look

For DB Congress members, the name Del McCoury is a familiar one. A long-time friend and inspiration for Dierks, bluegrass legend Del has made numerous appearances in support our DBC President--like the time they performed Rovin' Gambler, and when Del appeared on the Up on the Ridge album for "Pride (In the Name of Love)," or even as recently as last year when they sang the National Anthem.

This time, it was Dierks' turn to show up to honor Del; he did so by helping celebrate Del's 80th birthday. Surrounded by family and friends, Del celebrated the best way a musician can--on stage at the Grand Ole Opry. Entitled the "Grand Del Opry," the Feb. 13 event hosted artists such as Sam Bush, Vince Gill, the Travelin' McCourys and more. It felt natural when Dierks' name showed up on the set list.

Just like it felt natural to know we had DBC reps in the audience! Mary Lou Greene, DBC rep from N.C., immediately knew she needed to make the trek to Tennessee. After seeing her photos, it was clear her story needed to be shared! Here's an interview about her Dierks and Del adventure.

How did you hear about the Grand Del Opry event? 
I follow Grand Ole Opry on all the socials, so I saw it as soon as it was announced. Dierks was not on the initial list of artists. My immediate thought was, “Wow, I would love to go,” but saw it was a Wednesday night PLUS I already had plans to fly to Nashville the next Wednesday, Feb. 20, for Dierks’ show at Bridgestone. In the back of my mind, I kept thinking about it.

You scored the front row! How did you manage that? 
When the announcement came out that they had added Dierks to the show, on Jan. 23, I immediately went to check for tickets. And there it was--a single seat in Section 4, Row BB, Seat 9. Front row. It was kismet. And that ticket was mine!

What was the most memorable part of the night? 
There were so many. I have a photo of Dierks and Del that captured it. The photo isn’t great but I will always remember it. Everyone came back out for the final number, "I Saw The Light." If you grew up in a Southern Baptist church like I did, you knew the words to this song by the time you were four, so that was incredibly special. And to look around at the talent on that stage, it was absolutely mind blowing. I had goosebumps from the minute the show started.

Have you always been a Del fan? 
I hate to admit this, but no. Just like I wasn’t always a huge Dierks fan (gasp). I grew up on country music. I was card-carrying member of the Loretta Lynn fan club when I was four. My mom took me to tons of country shows. In my teen years, I was a die-hard Alabama fan. Then I sort of lost my love of country music, not completely, but I just sort of became disillusioned with the plethora of music that all sounded the same. The story of me finding Dierks’ music is a long one, but let’s just say, when I fell, I fell hard. I saw the videos of him with Del McCoury and the Travelin’ McCourys, so when they were scheduled to play a show at a tiny venue in Mt. Airy, N.C. (about 45 minutes from me), I knew I had to see what this was all about. Growing up in rural North Carolina and Virginia, bluegrass music was all around; I clearly just never appreciated it. That show, though, at The Earle in Mt. Airy, made me a believer! I also met both Del and Ronnie McCoury before the show and got my picture with them. I have seen them three times since then and am always blown away at the music. There is nothing smoother than Del McCoury’s voice.

What was the most special Dierks and Del moment of the evening? 
Just seeing the way they respect each other. I mean, there was like joy oozing from the stage that night on all parts. Dierks, especially, seemed so happy and at ease playing up there next to all of the McCourys and Sam Bush. Dierks said he would not be doing what he is doing without Del, so we Dierks fans owe Mr. McCoury a huge thank you.

What is something you saw from the front row that others further back might have missed? 
I was so grateful to have snagged that front row seat, and as it turns out, the seats on each side of me were sold as singles as well, each to huge Del fans, both from W.Va. The guy to my right, Heath, has seen Del about 60 times and is the epitome of a Del-head. ... They come out before the curtain goes up to sort of warm up the audience ... Heath won a signed Hatch Show Print before the curtain went up by answering the trivia question: “When did Del McCoury first play the Grand Ole Opry?” Answer: 1963. ... I actually got to sing in the microphone (apologies to anyone who might have heard it!) and they announced my name and state. My 30 seconds of fame at the Opry.

The other moments I saw and tried to capture were when they were all on the stage for the final number. At one point, Dierks was in the back row with Sam Bush and they were interacting and laughing. Again, pure joy.

Are there any other special moments that took place that night that you’d like to share? 
Dierks said when he walked into the Opry that night [that the co-writer of Up On the Ridge, Angelo Petraglia, was in the house] so he had him come out for UOTR; [Dierks] took his guitar off and gave it to Angelo to play. That was pretty special. I don’t think I have ever heard UOTR without Dierks playing his guitar, though. I found it is incredibly difficult to stay in your seat for UOTR! I was dancing IN my seat! You know there is protocol and proper demeanor expected at an Opry show!

It looks like you ran into Dierks on Valentine’s Day! What did he say? 
Seeing Dierks on Valentine’s Day was the icing on the cake for that trip to Nashville. I knew he was playing a UMG show for Country Radio Seminar that Thursday morning at The Ryman Auditorium and I also knew he had a show in Ontario, Calif., that night. The show started at 11:30 a.m. so I kind of figured he would be one of the first ones to perform. My son, his girlfriend and I had just Ubered downtown to get a Valentine’s special latte at The Well Coffeehouse (chocolate strawberry – yum!), which is like one block up from the Ryman, then they wanted to go boot shopping. The timing just happened to work. We were walking by the parking alley next to the Ryman and he was coming out, white guitar case in hand and all. So I stopped on the sidewalk and he stopped as he was pulling out. He was like, “What are you doing here?” and to be honest, I have no idea what I said. He didn’t have long as he was headed to the airport to head to Calif. I told him we would see him next week at Bridgestone. He was super sweet and nice, like always. And he was off, in a hurry to get to the airport! And I realized immediately I forgot to wish him a Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine's Day wishes or not, what a perfect weekend at the Opry!

Thank you for sharing your story and photos, Mary Lou!

Jessica Borrelli
DB Congress Rep, WA

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Seven Peaks 2019 Announcement

It's official! The announcement DB Congress members have been waiting for has come!

The Seven Peaks Festival will be back in Colorado this Labor Day weekend!

In case you missed last year's event, here's a great recap from Rolling Stone, with a bonus article from the Taste of Country, labeling Dierks as the "most accessible headliner" ... we would have to agree!

DBCers found a public notice from Chaffee County earlier this year discussing a "public hearing [on Feb. 5] ... for the purpose of considering a Special Event Permit request from Live Nation Country Festival" with the event to be held at Buena Vista over Labor Day weekend. That could only mean one thing, right?

An announcement one way or the other was on the horizon ... we're just so grateful this was the outcome! 

Of course, Dierks pulled together one of his favorite bands--the Hot Country Knights--to help announce the news:


Oh, Steve Misamore, you are truly hilarious! Add Dan Hochhalter with his selfie mode and Cassady Feasby with his hairspray, and this is one unforgettable announcement! If this is any indication of what's to come for this festival, we wouldn't miss it! Only 195 days to go ...

While artists, ticket and camping details have not yet been released, last year's tickets went on sale in mid-April. We should know more in the next few weeks.

However, there is one website addition we did notice this year on the contact page! Has anyone else contacted Dierks?

Stay tuned and in the meantime, visit!

Jessica Borrelli
DB Congress Rep, WA

(Transcript from Dierks' announcement video: What’s up everybody! I’ve been waiting like six months to make this announcement! I’m so excited to announce that Seven Peaks Festival is coming back to Colorado, Aug. 30-Sept. 1 (Labor Day weekend, just like last year). We love this festival; it’s my favorite thing to do. I’m so excited you guys are allowing us to do it again. Thank you for all of the support last year and I cannot wait to see you guys again this year! A lot of bands, including these guys—the Hot Country Knights--it’s gonna be so fun! So we’ll see you guys, hopefully everybody out there a Buena Vista! Seven Peaks Festival, coming again this Labor Day weekend Aug. 30-Sept. 1. Check it out at Yes, this is so awesome!)