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It's a Gene Watson Takeover at Whiskey Jam in Nashville!

by Rich and Laura Lynch

I suppose we were a bit lucky to have waited this long to see our first "Whiskey Jam" as the 777th edition of the event was held on August 22, 2022 at Winners Bar and Grill in Nashville, Tennessee. The occasion lived up to its advance billing and then some as this special live performance was to celebrate Gene Watson's career and his upcoming release Outside the Box - coming September 16.

Gene Watson, host Ward Guenther and Erin Enderlin in Nashville.

Outside the Box showcases Gene's masterful vocals on newly recorded songs from Watson as well as re-imagined classics across various genres ranging from Etta James to Merle Haggard. The twelve tracks finds Watson collaborating with country legend Willie Nelson on "Wonderful Future" and also features a duet with Opry peer Rhonda Vincent on "I've Got One of Those Too."

Gene Watson is known as "The Singer's Singer". With a career that spans over 60 years, Gene has more than 75 charted titles, 23 Top 10 hits, six No. 1 country singles and five No. 1 gospel hits. Watson is also a member of the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame, the Houston Texas Music Hall of Fame and in 2020 he was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry.

Dailey and Vincent got up close and personal at the Whiskey Jam.

Winners was packed when Erin Enderlin kicked things off. Erin on acoustic shared the stage with a fiddle player. Between tunes that referenced drinking she shared that she had the honor of writing three of the songs that are on Gene's new record. Next, Wynn Williams from Texas was a solid storyteller. We thoroughly enjoyed his cowboy tale told from the perspective of a horse named "Tornado". Josh Ross with a full band was also another fine singer and songwriter on the bill.

Dailey & Vincent like Gene are Grand Ole Opry members. They are an award winning band well-respected in the bluegrass, country and gospel worlds. The duo with a full band presented an animated set that included the newer "I'll Leave My Heart in Tennessee" which is now an official state song. They also did a number of covers to honor ladies in country including The Judds with "Why Not Me".

Caleb Lee Hutchinson keeps making great music in Music City.

Caleb Lee Hutchinson was a runner up on the sixteenth season of American Idol. Now he is focused on crafting his own unique spin on country. At Winners, Caleb gave folks a winning set of songs reflecting his southern roots and a rich vocal style. It took a bit of time to setup for Joedi Silvers who got to play with Watson's group The Farewell Party Band. The young singer dressed for the evening said he loved and grew up listening to Gene and asked if it was okay to play one of his song. Silvers aptly handled "Change Her Mind" to close his set.

Gene Watson thanked folks for coming out and he also thanked all the people who wrote songs that he cut and in turn charted. Watson and his talented team presented a feisty "Farewell Party" and the gem "Fourteen Carat Mind" as part of his classic catalogue.

Wynn Williams, Josh Ross and Joedi Silvers at the Whiskey Jam just off of Music Row.

Gene mentioned the new CD and played "If I Had Any Pride Left At All" from Outside the Box which had hit written all over it. The "Gene Watson Takeover" was a celebration of his old and new music with a lineup that reflected a range of age groups that were all inspired by this influential and stellar singer.

The "Gene Watson Takeover" was hosted by Whiskey Jam which is held Mondays and Thursdays at Winners (1913 Division St). Since 2011, Whiskey Jam has been offering original music from emerging artists and now they are also including more well-known musicians. The next Takeover is scheduled for September and will star Dailey & Vincent. Winners is a sports bars and restaurant that frequently features live music such as the Whiskey Jam.

The Whiskey Jam is an institution on Division Street.

Related Links: For more information on WHISKEY JAM and the other organizations mentioned please visit the following links - Whiskey Jam | Gene Watson | Dailey and Vincent | Caleb Lee Hutchinson | Winners Bar and Grill Nashville


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