July 22-31, 2022
With 20 No. 1 hits stretching back to 1991, two GRAMMY awards, dozens of ACM and CMA honors and a discography counting more album sales than any duo in history – regardless of genre – Brooks & Dunn’s influence on today’s country has never been in question. Hits like “Boot Scootin’ Boogie,” “My Maria” and “Believe” have propelled the duo to more than 30 million albums sold, with the New York Times heralding “together they helped drive the power-country era of the early-to-mid 1990s and continued to benefit from the sea change in the genre they helped initiate right through their most recent albums.” Their original “Merle Haggard meets The Rolling Stones” vibe made them progressive stars in their own right. The duo’s recently released collaboration project REBOOT debuted at No. One on Billboard’s Top Country Albums. The impressive feat marks the first time the duo has topped the album charts since 2009 while simultaneously earning the duo their 10th Billboard 200 Top 10 album, the most of any country duo or group in the chart’s history. In 2019 the duo was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in the “Modern Era Artist” category.
Elvie Shane’s dad had a saying. One of those things that sticks with a person all through life – and especially in tough times. “Always forward, never straight,” he’d proclaim, knowing full well that a detour sometimes gets us where we’re headed. Even as a kid, Shane knew it was good advice. He just had no idea how good.
Nowadays, he’s the man behind the most heartwarming country hit in recent memory – the lump-in-your-throat anthem to step-fatherhood, “My Boy” – and Shane knows what his dad meant. The road ahead is rarely a straight shot, and with Backslider, his full-length album debut on Wheelhouse Records, he gives that truth a soundtrack.
“It’s my biography pretty much,” Shane says, waving a flag for the perfect imperfection of our world. “I feel like Backslider is about being human, and I just want to say ‘Hey man, I screw up on a daily basis, and I can’t help it – but I’m gonna get up tomorrow and try to be better than I was. Does anybody want to do that with me?’”
A native of small-town Kentucky, that drive to make the world a little better comes naturally to Shane – and so does his high-energy sound. Raised in the Baptist church, some of his earliest (and fondest) memories come from singing hymns each week beside his Gospel-loving mother. She was the rock of the family, providing Shane with the drive and compassionate compass he now follows in his own music. But when they got home, it was his dad’s boombox that stole Shane’s attention, with the sound of classic rock and country helping pass the time.
Early touchstones like Dwight Yoakam, Steve Earle and John Fogerty joined Shane’s Gospel roots to form the bedrock of his taste – along with R&B classics like The Temptations and modern superstars like Eminem. And after a fateful Baptist revival came through town, he joined a band as a front man full of wild-eyed charisma. Soon they were rocking rowdy beer joints that suited his roughneck style, and at the same time, Shane began writing songs that were almost visual in their depth. But like so many others, he flew mostly under the radar … until “My Boy” first emerged.