Drivin’ N Cryin’ to bring ‘power pop,’ ‘hard rock’ to Duluth stage

When Kevn Kinney, vocalist and guitarist with the band Drivin’ N Cryin,’ steps onstage, he said he shows his true personality to connect with the audience. With more than 30 years with the band, Kinney said being himself is the easiest way to stand out in any art form.

“Whether it be writing, painting or making music … be yourself, tell your own story, use your own voice,” he said. “Everybody’s story is special. Of course, you will take your influences and mix them up to guide you through your first years, but eventually you need to find your own path.”

The Atlanta-based band, known for its hits “Fly Me Courageous” and “Straight to Hell,” will perform in the Summer Stage Concert Series in Duluth this Saturday.

The city will host the concert, which will take place on the Duluth Town Green at 3147 Main St. from 8 to 10 p.m.

The band includes guitarist Warner Hodges, drummer Dave Johnson and Tim Nielsen, a vocalist who also is on bass.

Kinney said the band is often labeled as southern rock, but Drivin’ N Cryin’ has more in common with groups such as Cheap Trick or The Who than Lynyrd Skynyrd.

“I guess (that) could be true if you include REM or collective soul into the genre of southern rock,” he said. “But we prefer to think of ourselves as a power pop hard rock band from Atlanta, Georgia. … That’s nothing against Lynyrd Skynyrd. We’ve toured with them, and I think they’re a great band.”

He said the band has survived a countless amount of miles on the road by staying close friends.

Kinney said their shows draw a people of different backgrounds, ages and tastes in music. The band does not use a set list, he said, but they try to accommodate everyone in the crowd.

“I like to sing about things we all have a common — friendship, love, heartbreak, taxes, paying the rent …”

The Duluth event will include games and food and beverage vendors.

Blankets and chairs are permitted, but tents are not allowed.

The concert will be an open zone event, so concertgoers can bring drinks and coolers or purchase from licensed vendors.

For information, visit www.duluthga.net/events.


By Erika Wells

Gwinnett Daily Post