A well-seasoned Brothers Osborne took to the stage before a sold-out crowd at Nashville’s Marathon Music Works on Wednesday, Jan. 18 as the third to final show, wrapping their headlining Dirt Rich Tour.
If you consider Nashville their hometown, the last time the Maryland-native John and TJ Osborne played a full show in Music City was four years ago. That was said to be prior to their signing with EMI Records Nashville, which almost a year ago to date spawned the duo’s full-length Pawn Shop album.
Since that time, the biological brothers have advanced their performance swagger tremendously and have gone on to become the reigning CMA Vocal Duo of the Year, garner two nominations the past two years for Best Country Duo/Group Performance at the Grammy Awards, and make their Grand Ole Opry debut.
At Marathon Music Works, the audience remained on their feet throughout the evening to witness the duo hit home run performances of every song from Pawn Shop. Highlights included the phenomenally nostalgic “21 Summer” and their Platinum-certified “Stay A Little Longer,” both of which have received Grammy nominations.
It has long been known the brothers are guitar virtuosos, but that sound has morphed into a telling narrative. With a handful of radio singles, the two have also developed an unabashed social stance. Their platform has elevated same-sex couples in music videos, their live show highlights historical nods to the assassination of President Kennedy and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. during various songs, in addition to a bold-for-country-music cover of the long ostracized blue party-supporters Dixie Chicks (“Goodbye Earl”).
Further covers were tastefully made of Willie Nelson’s “Whiskey River,” John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads” and a bluegrass version of Bruce Springsteen’s “Atlantic City.” With ease, the two played through their more unknown debut single “Let’s Go There,” and its more well-known follow-up, “Rum.”
Show opener—the soul infused sparkling bride of John Osborne—Lucie Silvas joined them onstage for “Loving Me Back” (Lee Ann Womack provided the harmony vocal on the album version). Silvas was one of two openers throughout the tour since October, trading off with the youthfully exuberant five-member group LANco.
Taking the punches as they come on the road, the brothers literally brought the house down at the Fox Theatre in Hanford, California when the venue’s roof collapsed minutes before they were scheduled to take the stage. The duo’s alternate plan was to perform on the roof of their tour bus outside.
Safe inside the Marathon complex prior to their Nashville encore, the brothers played their latest stomper single, “It Ain’t My Fault.” The title has debuted as the No. 1 most added song at country radio this week (Jan. 17), further proving the duo not only can fill concert venues but can climb the ladder of the charts. It’s sure to be a storied ride from here on out.
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