It's another star-time weekend at two local country nightclubs, with Confederate Railroad at Coyote's on Friday and Steve Holy at the Country Club on Saturday.
Confederate Railroad lead vocalist Danny Shirley and his band from Kennesaw, Ga., (where the Confederate locomotive The General is in a museum) have been regular visitors to Augusta. They will take the stage at 10 p.m. Friday at Coyote's, 2512 Peach Orchard Road. Advance tickets are $12.
Other Confederate Railroad band members are Mark DuFresne, drums; Wayne Secrest, bass guitar; Gates Nichols, steel guitar and vocals; Jimmy Dormire, lead guitar; and Cody McCarver, keyboards and vocals. Hit singles by the group include She Took It Like a Man, Jesus and Mama, Queen of Memphis, Elvis and Andy, Trashy Women and She Never Cried.
The band was named Best New Group by the Academy of Country Music in 1993.
Mr. Shirley, on the band's Web site confederaterailroad.net, recalls a compliment he received from a legend in country music:
"There was the time I was lying on the floor at George Jones' house watching the Tennessee-Georgia football game in 1992. He turned to me and said, 'You sang real good on that Jesus and Mama song.' That comment was like getting a blessing from the pope."
Advance tickets for Mr. Holy's show Saturday night at the Country Club, 2834 Washington Road, also are $12. Tickets are $15 at the door.
Mr. Holy was born in Dallas and is the youngest of eight children. He made his stage debut in the early 1990s performing Roy Orbison and Elvis Presley songs at the Texas Mesquite Opry.
He eventually made it to Nashville, Tenn., where LeAnn Rimes' father, Wilbur Rimes, helped get him get a contract with Curb Records and produced his first CD.
It was his fourth single, a ballad called Good Morning Beautiful, that made him a star in 2001. It ended up on the soundtrack to the Jennifer Lopez movie Angel Eyes, which could be why he didn't have another hit for five years. The drought ended last year when his up-tempo comedy single (I Got a) Brand New Girlfriend from his new Curb Records album of the same name shot up the charts.
MR. T RETURNS: The pride of Commerce, Ga., T. Graham Brown, returns to Augusta on Valentine's Day for a show at the Country Club. The opening act goes on at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $7 advance, $10 the day of show.
Don Rhodes has written about country music for 36 years. He can be reached at (706) 823-3214 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.