Country Fried Rock freely admits that this was not our best interview, but not because of the gracious and humble Kevn Kinney. We were star struck like a teenager. Verklempt. Tongue-tied. Bordering on giddy. It happens to everyone, we guess.
Drivin N Cryin was the first band that we “discovered” in Atlanta right after their first release. They were fixtures at the Cotton Club, Center Stage, & the Dugout, and local music heroes, with a harder sound than the Athens, Georgia music scene of the time, as if The Replacements were Southern. We used to harrass their manager to let us be “roadies for the night” so that we could get into twenty-one and up shows, but the band was kind enough to do “all ages” shows every so often. A bunch of our friends skipped school to be in one of their videos. If R.E.M. were our music gods at the time, Drivin N Cryin were our accessible local prophets. It’s always unnerving and delightful when your heroes are totally normal people.
Watching some of those old videos, it’s surreal to realize those little kids are now adults, marriages have come and gone, and mature relationships make peace. Kevn’s kids probably wear that old red jacket he always wore on stage. Somehow, musicians do not seem to age like the rest of us, because the music still brings us back to exact moments, places, and friends, often long gone and not really missed, until a sound or smell brings us there. We’re not here to travel Nostalgia Road, but it’s hard not to roll in that direction. Drivin N Cryin are not here to do a reunion tour or revel in the past . Their music has continued to evolve. They have had fame and success, and now are free to create because they want to, without the pressure of having to make it big. Kinney’s distinctive voice lends instant recognition to any tune, and we were surprised to learn that he is not a fan of his own singing.
These days, Kinney is making up for the years he spent touring by educating himself with a self-designed college literature major–sort of like homeschooling yourself with the classics at the “University of Now I’m Ready to Do This.” He is launching a new Truckstop series in Atlanta and enjoying the freedom to create for its own purpose. Not too bad for a guy who was just inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame!
Songs in Episode 1104 include:
- 2 songs from The Great American Bubble Factory by Drivin N Cryin
- Paul Revere and the Raiders, “Kicks”
- “Scarred But Smarter” on the Flower and the Knife (intentionally not the original version)
- Patti Smith Group, “Because the Night”
- Madison Square Gardeners, “Stand By You”
- Golden Palominos, “Omaha”
- Procol Harum, “Conquistador,” part of our Robin Trower discussion
- Todd Snider, “Tension”
- Black Keys, “Tighten Up”
- Dex Romweber Duo, “Lookout”