The Scooter Brown Band Impresses Opening for Charlie Daniels Band
Upon arriving at the Florida Theater to see the Charlie Daniels Band perform, I did not know there would be an opening act performing. After discovering who The Scooter Brown Band was, I ended up being more than pleasantly surprised by this new act’s bold southern rock sound and sexy yet down-home stage charisma.
After their performance, I had a chance to pick their brains a little on their sound, their journey, and what it meant to play in Jacksonville, Florida as The Charlie Daniels Bands opener.
The Scooter Brown band has a catchy fun sound, without being “bro-country,” a genre that singer Scott Brown touched on his hope to be separated from when we spoke. They play classic rock inspired music with edgy guitar effects, squealy high on the neck solos, and driving rhythms that make an audience yeehaw and dance.
Brown is a solid vocalist and his harmonies with bassist Steven Sutherland are musical, expanding the sound of the four piece. Sutherland talked after the show about being from Scotland, something that you can hear has a slight musical impact on the group’s sound. That down-by-the-river, whiskey drinking, folk music is something multiple cultures have similarly embraced so it’s no surprise that influence fits so well.
The Scooter Brown Band just signed their first record deal and they played some stand-out tracks from their record American Son during their short set opening for The Charlie Daniels Band. From happy hoedown style jigs to a “good old fashioned murder ballad anthem” about deployment betrayal, they deliver a wide range of sounds all vital to the southern rock genre. My personal favorite was the title track “American Son”. They began with a heartfelt toast to the US military, as front man Scott Brown said to us, “I wrote this song because I believe in the American spirit…the common decency to fight for someone who can’t fight for themselves.” The imagery of the lyrics invokes fearless anthemic powerful patriotism, the way patriotism used to be. This is a band comprised of military men. They are clearly genuine, with the sound of men that no one ever gave silver spoons and expensive guitar lessons.
After their set, I spoke a little with the group. Bassist Steven Sutherland told us about the band’s excitement to be in Jacksonville and his desire to “win over the crowd because Lynyrd Skynyrd is from [Jacksonville] and we want to be recognized as a Southern rock band.” Speaking more with front man Scott Brown, I was told the story of a self proclaimed Southern rock band, who has spent time out west, in Texas, and in Tennessee road dogging through major country and rock capitals for ten years. They seemed surprised to be doing so well down south, but their sound and personality was refreshing and very appealing to the crowd that evening, who had nothing but good things to say while awaiting The Charlie Daniels Band onstage.
Brown told me that the members of The Scooter Brown Band always come out and shake hands as they did that evening, no matter the venue, “Because without the fans, we are just a couple guys sitting on the back of a trailer.” The CDB is an intimidating act to open for, but The Scooter Brown Band brought it, and we are excited to watch their journey as a newly signed Southern rock band that I anticipate will quickly become more popular among both young and old crowds around the country.
All photo credits to Ablynn Photo
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