Night That You’ll Never Forget Tour
Love and Theft with Special guests Joel Crouse and DJ DU
December 18, 2014
Tickets: $20 in Advance | $25 Day of Show
Doors: 8pm | 19+
Tickets On Sale Now!
Love and Theft
ACM, CMA, and CMT-nominated duo Love and Theft, made up of singer/songwriters Stephen Barker Liles and Eric Gunderson, first hit the scene with their debut single “Runaway” which landed in the top 10 on the Billboard Country Charts. They followed it up with their #1 platinum hit, “Angel Eyes,” from their self-titled album from RCA Records Nashville. The album also yielded “If You Ever Get Lonely,” “Running Out of Air,” and fan-favorite “Amen.” Their latest single, “Night That You’ll Never Forget,” is the first release from their new album due out later this year. Celebrated for the distinctive style, sparkling harmonies, and sonic depth, Love and Theft is currently hard at work on their next album with producer Josh Leo (Alabama) and can be seen on tour throughout the country.
No matter what, I’m always going to write about what I’m going through,” says Joel Crouse, the 22-year old phenom with a voice full of soul, songs full of heart and a tender, twangy touch that makes him the freshest thing to come through Nashville in years. “Because, deep down, country music is about the story.”
And Crouse is indeed a storyteller. Though he grew up in Holland, Massachusetts and not the Deep South, the small New England farming town gave this pastor’s son the rural life experience that he needed to grow a strong connection with country music and its timeless art of the song. It was his Alabama-bred grandfather who bought the then thirteen-year-old his first guitar and schooled him on the likes of Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings, and he was instantly enamored: by the age of sixteen he’d already begun writing songs, honing his signature strumming style and formed two bands. Since then, he’s been working tirelessly to bring his music straight to his fans: no gimmicks, no reality shows, no shortcuts. Just hard work and fearless talent that have taken him from playing dive bars to opening for the likes of Taylor Swift on her Red Tour, The Band Perry and Darius Rucker.
Crouse’s debut studio album, Even The River Runs, is a story of this path – his joy, his struggles, his romances (for better or for worse). Whatever he may be singing about, one thing is constant: each and every lyric is completely true to himself. “My songs will always be about honest experience,” he says about the ten tracks, each one of which he co-wrote. ” I always want to be the one telling my story.”
Because at 22, Crouse has always done it his own way. Signed to a record deal at just 19, he knew how important it was to follow his gut even in his early teenage years. Inspired by everyone from Jennings to Keith Urban to John Mayer, his sound formed free of genre walls. “When songs would move me,” he muses, “it didn’t matter what genre they were in.” It’s an approach that helped inform his own unique niche that’s a little bit country, a little bit rock ‘n’ roll and completely original. Growing up as a true fan of music, he says, and not any particular category, helped breed this diverse and exciting point of view.
Crouse has built up a fan base in the old-fashioned method – on the road, in bars and arenas – and he’s become known for electric live shows that have charmed audiences originally there to catch superstars like Swift and Rucker into lifelong, devoted followers. “I try very hard to bring as honest of a performance as possible to my fans both old and new,” he says passionately. It comes through loud and clear, beaming out in his concerts.
Produced by Jamie Houston, Even The River Runs, spans the gamut of Crouse’s musical lexicon, from thumping, honky-tonk barn-burners like “Don’t Tell Me” (co-written by Crouse, James Dean Hicks and Jamie Houston and featured on the CW’s Hart of Dixie), to the breakout bluesy-twang romper “If You Want Some” or Crouse’s personal favorite, “Ruby Puts Her Red Dress On,” which is anchored by a smooth vamp evoking his treasured classic rock influences. “It’s about some friends deployed to Afghanistan,” he recalls. “It’s a story song, and one of the deepest on the record.”
Crouse is also not shy about exposing his love life in song – though his tales of romance are certainly as rooted in honest experience as everything else on the record. Take “I Never Said I Was In Love,” an emotive ballad built on a piano lick that evokes a southern-steeped Bryan Adams. “It’s about my commitment issues,” he says with a laugh. Others, like the mid-tempo groove of “You Could Break a Heart Like That” showcase his own vulnerable side – and his vocal range, which can go from sultry lows to a stunning falsetto in one fell swoop.
Another track, the fan favorite “Why God Makes Love Songs,” is the perfect grooving, clapping ode to summertime love, and on moments like the title track, “Even The River Runs,” all of his sides – vintage rock, modern country and dusty blues – come together in one perfect, rollicking ride that puts his guitar chops on full display.
As a writer, Crouse only continues to grow – working with some of the most influential pens in Nashville, from Luke Laird to Craig Wiseman, honing his own style – which sometimes means eschewing current trends and paving his own path that’s a departure from current party-oriented, tailgate-loving radio hits. “You might bond with those songs on a Friday night,” he says. “But what songs are you going to bond with Monday through Friday, when it’s just you in your car? Those moments by yourself, where you just want to relate to someone: those are the songs I want to write.”
And some of Crouse’s influences aren’t what you might think. “Lyrically, I’m inspired by people who took chances on their music,” he says, before naming people like Nirvana and Eminem as well as Tom Petty and the Lumineers. “When you’re a true artist, you have to show that raw nerve.”
Crouse has come a long way from playing Nashville’s Lower Broadway – the street corners, to be exact, because he wasn’t even old enough to play in the bars – but he’s forever connected to his roots and committed to expressing honesty and tried-and-true country storytelling with a modern spin through his music. “I’m so excited to share my experiences on this record,” he says, not before adding, “but I’m already working on new songs.” Always creating, always in motion, but never forgetting the past: that’s Crouse.
Born Duhamel Wayne Cassell in New York City, DJ DU is an American DJ and Remix Producer. At the early age of 13, DJ DU started his DJ career by spinning records for his friends and family in the Infamous Basement in East Windsor, NJ. His brother Yo-el Cassell would practice dance while DU would remix everything from dance and rock to show tunes and latin music. Yo-el has gone on to become an accomplished dancer and choreographer, including a winner of a Tony Award.
Being from a multi-cultural household, DU was exposed to an unbelievable amount of musical influences from a young age. Growing up in the shadow of New York City, Philadelphia, and the Jersey Shore; Du started appearing at clubs and parties in his teens. DU teamed up with hip-hop artist YZ (Tony Hill) in high school where they produced their first album at Jam All Productions Studio in Philadelphia.
After high school DU felt compelled to serve his country and joined the US Air Force. He flew around the world, including the Persian Gulf, as an aircrew on C-141s and KC-10 aircraft. During his service DU extended his musical taste by visiting clubs in Europe and South America. After completing his service, DU enrolled at Rowen University in New Jersey where he attended classes during the days and spun in clubs at night in New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia with a new found passion for music of all types.
During college, it would be a chance encounter performing at a corporate gig that would allow Du to be spotted and recruited by a legendary night club owner to move out west to Phoenix, AZ; where he was offered the opportunity to DJ full time at a country and Top 40 night club. This was DU’s first experience in the rock and country music world. After a short time in Phoenix, Du was then recruited to take over entertainment at the Cactus Moon in Tucson where he infused country and top 40 music together with dance music in a new and unique way to attract crowds of every musical preference and made it one of the busiest clubs in the southwest. After many years, DJ DU decided to depart the Cactus Moon to open him up to pursue other endeavors in music and style.
Since then, Du’s career has taken off with a vengeance. In October 2012, he signed with CAA for major booking representation worldwide making him the only DJ on the Nashville roster. Soon thereafter, he was invited to do a guest set at their annual Young Nashville charity party and also MC’ed their IEBA showcase to introduce the Nashville music community to his unique blend of music and performance, a first for the country music world.
2012 marked another debut for Du – his first national TV appearance. Just a month later, during the American Country Awards (FOX), Du remixed “Something About A Truck” and “Beer Money” while country super star Kip Moore took the stage to a jam-packed arena in Las Vegas.
That same month while still in Las Vegas, DJ DU spun an amazing ten nights in a row for National Finals Rodeo at the MGM Grand with equal billing as Cirque Du Soleil. To the cowboys and cowgirls that flood Vegas annually for their sport’s championship, this was definitely one of the hottest spots in town to be at after the rodeo each night and he kept the casino floor rocking on a custom stage built exclusively for his sets until the wee hours of the morning every night.
The beginning of 2013 continued his hot streak, starting out with performing three nights at this year’s Houston Rodeo BBQ Cookoff to 80,000+ people over the weekend, another first for a DJ at a country centric event.
Looking ahead, Du will perform as one of a few select acts for the Grammy Block Party in Nashville in May, then returning in June for CMA Fest both performing daily on the BMI Stage at LP Field then downtown on Lower Broadway for the late night party fans. He’ll also be headlining the Electric Thunder tent at all Country Thunder Festivals which will take place in Arizona, Texas, Wisconsin. Later this year, he’s confirmed to set sail with the Alabama & Friends At Sea’s 40th Anniversary Cruise celebrating one of the most prolific bands in country music historic milestone.
Du recently infiltrated the social media world with “Duesday.” Each week on Tuesday, he releases a “mini-house mix” track or mashup of songs via his Soundcloud page (www.soundcloud.com/djdumusic). So far, this innovative campaign has earned DU a rapidly growing myriad of plays, fans, and followers constanly introducing this new sub-genre of country music to people that he’s helping to create.
You may have seen DU performing in numerous clubs around the country like Studio 54 at the MGM Grand, Stoney’s in Las Vegas, Joe’s Bar in Chicago, and Martini Ranch in Scottsdale, AZ. You may have also seen him at large national act electro shows and other dance music festivals. He is a member of the House Music Movement, Academy of Country Music, Country Music Association, The New York Dance Coalition and is a contract artist for AMG in Las Vegas. Du has been heard as a live remixer for several radio stations in Arizona and New Jersey. Du is also an accomplished guitar player, sound/light engineer and an award-winning entertainer.
Destined to be the “Tiesto of County Music,” Du brings a whole new channel of entertainment and revenue to events with a high energy audio and visual experience. No musical style is off limits to DJ DU and he looks forward to seeing you on the road bringing his passion, energy and love of all music to a town near you.