Bands played for hours on Friday night to a festive crowd
More than 1,000 tickets have been sold for an outdoor country music concert that kicked off the Montezuma County Fair Friday night.
Young and old gathered at the outdoor arena in a drizzle to hear opening band Tim Montana and headliner Logan Mize.
The muddy and wet conditions dampened the enthusiasm of the crowd.
Savannah Story of Cortez sang the national anthem and the covered grandstands kept the crowd dry.
The sturdy ones stood in the light rain and mud and the children ran and struggled.
The rain stopped when Tim Montana and his band took the stage.
The long-bearded cowboy rose out of poverty growing up in Montana and landed his first record deal after fan Charlie Sheen financed his first music video.
“We crashed the car and the video went viral,” Montana said.
His upbeat original songs caught the public’s attention and he peppered his set with tunes from Kid Rock, Eminem and ZZ Top.
“I’m definitely a new fan,” said a man in the audience.
Logan Mize and his band came out with a polished and powerful country sound.
Before the show, he ran the track at Phil’s World, got a little lost, and got caught in a rainstorm with lightning.
“I slipped and slipped, and thought I might perish right here in Montezuma County, but I came back!” he said.
Mize’s hard-core country-rock style is inspired by his small-town Kansas lifestyle and echoes John Mellencamp and Tom Petty.
His upbringing and his lyrics parallel the rural and agricultural roots of Montezuma County.
“There are so many characters you meet here, and everyone is pretty stoic and quiet,” Mize says in a biography about small town America. “But if you pay attention long enough, there is always a story that you will remember. And these stories can span the spectrum, from light to dark.
After living in Nashville where he recorded his fifth album “Welcome to Prairieville”, Mize returned to his Midwestern Kansas roots on a family farm where he draws inspiration for his music and compositions.
“I think going back to Kansas gave me perspective. Once I got here, and really immersed myself in that lifestyle, I found it a lot easier to be myself, to to be the heart rock dude who sings these songs,” he says in a biography. “I’m a farmer here. The whole thing is more believable. You listen to it, and I live that lifestyle. I think that it’s easier for people to sell, and it’s easier for me to sell because it’s real.
The county fair continues all next week. This weekend, the barrel race takes place on Saturday at noon. Sundays are Family Gymkhana at 9 a.m., 4-H Shooting Sports are at 1 p.m., and the 4-H Dog Show starts at 5 p.m.