You can tell it’s nearly September by all of the concerts and music festivals starting back after the slower summer months.
Here are some country-oriented ones:
JASON CRABB: This Southern gospel singer seen frequently on Bill Gaither’s Homecoming TV specials will perform at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8, at Christian Heritage Church, 285 Ascauga Lake Road, in Graniteville, S.C. Call (803) 663-7504 for details.
Crabb, who was born and reared in Beaver Dam, Ky., performed last May at Jeff & Sheri Easter’s Homecoming Gospel Festival near Lincolnton. His recent CD, Love Is Stronger, was produced by Rascal Flatt’s Jay DeMarcus and also Ed Cash and Wayne Haun.
MOUNTAIN HEART WITH LERA LYNN: This widely acclaimed bluegrass band kicks off the 2013-2014 Morris Museum of Art’s Budweiser True Music Southern Soul & Song series at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13.
Tickets cost $15, $22 or $27 and are available at the Imperial Theatre box office, 745 Broad St., 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays, by calling (706) 722-8341, or through imperialtheatre.com. The series tickets offer all five shows for the price of four.
CRAIG MORGAN: This hot country star returns to the Augusta area for a show that opens at 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 26, at Lady Antebellum Pavilion, 7016 Evans (Ga.) Towne Center Boulevard.
Opening acts are the County Line band and The Daniel Johnson Band. For more information, call (706) 830-0677. Tickets cost $20 in advance at various locations – see www.ladyaevans.com – or $30 at the gate.
Morgan, who was on the 2003 A Day in the Country show, had hits with Wake Up Lovin’ You, International Harvester, Redneck Yacht Club, Almost Home, That’s What I Love About Sunday and Tough.
BROADWAY BOYS: The 2013-2014 Waynesboro-Burke Concert series begins with Broadway Boys at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 30.
Season tickets cost $40 and $50 for adults, which include the four main shows plus three reciprocal concerts. Students 17 and younger get in free with an adult season ticket holder. Single show tickets cost $20.
Tickets can be ordered by writing: Waynesboro-Burke Concert Series, P.O. Box 541, Waynesboro, GA 30830 or online at itickets.com or call (800) 965-9324.
LAST SATURDAY VIEWING: The last Saturday to see the history of broadcast and entertainment exhibit in the North Augusta Arts & Heritage Center is 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 7.
The center is located in the first floor of North Augusta’s Municipal Building, 100 Georgia Ave.
FINDING RONNIE BUSKIRK: Well, lo and behold, thanks to some local reader, I got a call last week from Ronnie Buskirk, who is well and living in Savannah. Another reader had asked if I knew what happened to him.
The 1966 graduate of Harlem (Ga.) High School got signed to Columbia Records in the late 1960s and had the uncanny ability to record songs like I Just Can’t Help Believin’, Where’s The Playground Susie?, I Knew You When and It’s Getting Better before the hit versions by B.J. Thomas, Glen Campbell, Billy Joe Royal and Mama Cass Elliot.
“I’d go to the song publishing houses in Nashville, New York and L.A. and listen to dozens of songs, and my producers and I usually would pick the same ones,” Buskirk recalled.
“When I look back, I think that I got picked up too quickly by a major label and was a little too green,” Buskirk said. “I got burned out too quickly. I thought, ‘Hell, here I’m 21 years old, and I’ve got to do something else with my life.’”
He worked for several years with the farmer’s home administration of the state of Georgia and with the state revenue department.
“I haven’t done nightclubs since I was in my 30s, and I’m now 65,” he said. “I’ve got a place on the Ogeechee River and spend time with my family. I was gone on the road from my family on so many weekends and holidays. I told my old drummer that you may think that you miss the performing days but you’re more in love with the fantasy of that than the reality.”