Friday, November 28, 2014

DB Congress Feature Rep of the Month: Rita Eaton, Ireland

She's never seen Dierks Bentley perform live, yet Rita "Reet" Eaton proudly promotes our president daily from across the pond.  

Our newest DB Congress rep from Ireland tells us about the unique way she came to know and love Dierks Bentley, his band and his music.

"Earlier this year, a Saturday morning, I was scrolling through my Tweets when I noticed one from Whispering Bob Harris raving about some Country Singer named Dierks Bentley. Who? Never heard of him. So, being a music lover, I immediately went on YouTube and checked him out. 

The first song I played was "I Hold On".....liked it. The next? "Bourbon in Kentucky." REALLY liked it and kept going. "Am I The Only One," "Up On The Ridge," "Come A Little Closer."  It's not very often music appeals to me straight away, it usually takes a few listens before I really get into it. 

I tweeted Whispering Bob Harris back saying "Why in the hell have I not heard of @DierksBentley before?" I was hooked, immediately got onto Amazon and ordered "Riser" and I haven't stopped playing it since. It is on constantly in my car going to and from work. It sets the mood for the day and gets rid of the stresses on the way home. I bop around to it in my kitchen whilst cooking, and you will quite often see me, a 53 year old girl, playing air guitar along with Brian Layson (I love his playing). 

Since then I have purchased all of Dierks CD's that are available and have played little else since. "Riser" and "Up On The Ridge" probably being the most played.

Music has always been a major part of my life. I have been lucky enough to see some great bands and artists over the years ranging from Fleetwood Mac to Michael Jackson, Mary Chapin Carpenter to Robert Plant, Bonnie Raitt, Eric Clapton, Tom Petty, the list goes on. I even sang in a band a good few years back (albeit for fun more than anything). 

I'm a lyrics person, it's always the lyrics of a song that appeal to me first, and I think that's why I love Dierks. His songs are a mix of fun, loving, meaningful, and some really make you think. "Here on Earth" is one particularly close to my heart. Of course it helps that he's not too hard on the eyes either. 

I follow the band on Twitter and Facebook (if they don't come to Ireland or the UK it's probably the closest I'll get to them!). I like that they are fun - Cassady's [Feasby, bass] humour in particular appeals to me.  As we say here in Ireland "he's a gas man." That doesn't mean you suffer with flatulence by the way Cassady, it means you're a good way. 

So, I've been introducing Dierks to my friends. Earlier this year I was travelling back to Ireland from my annual trip home (the UK) waiting to board my car onto the ferry.  It was a sunny day, the window was down and Riser CD was playing.  Next thing I know half a dozen people are stood around the car having a listen. That's when you know you're onto something good. 

Anyway, after all is said and done, I love Dierks Bentley's music.  It cheers me up, it makes me feel good, and to me that is what music is about. So keep doing what you're doing Dierks, only please come to Ireland soon."

Thanks for sharing your story, Reet!  We hope Irelend lands on Dierks' tour schedule soon for you!

Follow @Reeteaton on Twitter and our list of DBC Reps on our @dbcongress page!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Celebrating Dierks Bentley's 39th Birthday in Huntington, West Virginia

If someone had told me ten years ago I would be celebrating Dierks Bentley's 39th birthday at my 60th Dierks show, I wouldn't have believed them.  But it happened on Thursday, November 20, 2014 at Big Sandy Arena in Huntington, West Virginia!

It only took three airports, two planes, and a DRT (Dierks Road Trip) buddy to drive six hours up the mountain, through tunnels and tolls to get there, and that's just one way!  But this was a special occasion and I've traveled 15 states to see Dierks big deal. Every mile a memory, right Sandra?

Every DRT is special, not just because of Dierks, but because of all the Dierks fans I've met and traveled with along this 10-year journey.  It's a unique bond of friendships that one man started and continues to hold together.

What other group of fans do you know who would huddle together in 30 degree weather 5 hours before a show to be first in line? Thanks, Gina and Justin for the hot...beverage, and heaters and blankets!

And it's not just Dierks that keeps us coming back.  He surrounds himself with the best of the best--from his tour manager team to the stage crew, lighting, sound, and talented band of brothers-- together they make him look and sound awesome every night on the Riser Tour stage and they are all so nice to the fans--especially the DB Congress.

Gina, Sandra, Kathy, Chris Reade (lighting), Ashley, 
Ronna after the show Front of  House (FOH)

Sandra's 'almost' selfie with Tim Sergent (steel guitar) and DBC

Opening with "5-1-5-0", Dierks and his band - Steve Misamore, Tim Sergent, Brian Layson, Dan Hochhalter, and Cassady Feasby, emerged from under the Riser stage to the roar of nearly 6,000 in the crowd.

Dierks continued his own party with a killer set list, telling the crowd, there was no place he'd rather be on his birthday.

On this night, we DB Congress reps were especially thankful for being chosen to be a part of the big birthday 'surprise' that Dierks knew nothing about.  During "Drunk On A Plane," confetti fell from the rafters, blow up 'Riser Air' planes flew threw the arena as we ran through the crowd, giving high fives and throwing out Mardi Gras beads. What a special experience!  DBTV coming soon, but in the meantime, thank Justin for the video!  Looks like D came over to our side a few times but we weren't there...we left our front row spot to pass out beads!

Anybody who's been to a DB show knows he rarely stands still long enough to capture a great shot, but I did manage to catch him 'peacocking!'

And a few other cool shots.

Dierks showing Tim he's been practicing the steel

Dierks pointing to lucky section #7

Brian Layson, Cassady Feasby, Tim Sergent, Dierks
in a fog from Up On The Ridge

The Meet and Greet before the show featured Dierks on acoustic guitar, with DB Congress getting to enter a different door than the other 100, and brought within 3 feet of the backdrop, while the others filed in behind us. Talk about up close and personal!  Mel told us to make sure to sing along, and in fact it was very awkward for him if we didn't.

When he got to the chorus for DOAP, we apparently didn't sing loud enough, so he said, "you can do better than that!" and started again.  Second time was better.

During my turn, I showed him my 60th poster and reminded him about last year in West Palm Beach, when he wrote 'Let's make it 100' on my 50th poster. So he wrote that again.  I didn't look at what he wrote until later, but I was the last one out and walking down the long hall, he was walking out the other way and called me back.  "I'm such an idiot," he said.  "Let me see that poster again...I know there's no D in your name, let me fix it." And he did.  No, D, you're NOT an idiot! Thank you for remembering!

On our way back to Charlotte, another group of DBC reps were headed to the next night's show in Roanoke, so we met for hugs and pics and exchanged stories at exit 14 on I-77!

Carrie, Steph, Ronna, Amy, Sandra (Photo Credit: Jennifer)

Hopefully, I will get another 10 shows in over the next 12 months and be celebrating his big "4-0" birthday for my 70th show!

Every mile a memory!

DB Congress Chair

Sunday, November 9, 2014

We Celebrate Dierks Bentley: A 48th Annual CMA Awards Winner!

It’s very difficult to write a positive blog about Dierks Bentley and The 48th Annual CMA Awards results. Many of us thought that this would be Dierks’s year as Riser, most certainly his best work to date (not counting Up on the Ridge), was pretty much universally praised. So far, it has produced two number one singles, one hilarious video, and a successful tour that has catapulted him to another level as an artist. 

The morning of the show, we celebrated when he won the CMA Award for Video of the Year for “Drunk on a Plane,” which was announced prior to the televised awards show--the first of five nominations, the most of any male artist this year. However, as we went into watching the CMA Awards with high hopes, we came out three hours later utterly disappointed. 

Dierks and his wife Cassidy
“I Hold On,” which was as personal a song as one can get, also became an anthem for many—a perfect combination to ensure a Song of the Year win. Alas, Kacey Musgraves, Brandy Clark and Shane McAnally took home the award for “Follow Your Arrow.” 

We watched as Single of the Year and Album of the Year went to his friend and tour mate, Miranda Lambert.  

And as we longed for the tide to turn in the Male Vocalist category, Blake Shelton walked away with the award for another year.  

The one bright spot of the evening, was Dierks and the guys’ performance of “Drunk on a Plane.” Although sound quality was not at its best (for many of the performers) you could see Dierks and company put their all into the song which undoubtedly was the song of the summer.

Dierks himself said, "I've got my 'Yay, somebody else won, congratulations' face down pat. But we're winning right now." 

They most certainly are. 

With the success that 2014 has brought, one can only believe that 2015 will only see his star shine brighter and the industry take note to soon bestow on him the accolades of which he is most deserving. Until then, he will most certainly remain a winner in our eyes.