Country superstar Vince Gill returns to Louisiana for food, fellowship and an intimate performance at the Heymann Center. By Andrea Gallo
“Authenticity, to me, is the key to any music that you’re playing,” says country music hall of famer Vince Gill, adding that regardless of the venue in which it’s played, from the Grand Ole Opry to the Heymann Center, music is an experience that transcends time and brings people together.
The recipient of 19 Grammy Awards and 18 CMA Awards, Gill will bring that transcendent take on music to the Heymann Performing Arts Center on June 26 for a small, intimate, PASA-sponsored performance.
“If you get a great audience, it doesn’t matter if there’s 100 people or 50,000,” Gill says. “A great crowd’s a great crowd and a great band’s a great band and that doesn’t change no matter what the venue is.”
Gill says venues like the Heymann Center give him the opportunity to feel a closeness and connection with his audience. He’s no stranger to small venues, he says — that’s how he got his musical start before becoming famous.
“The reason you’re all there is to share a musical experience,” he says. “I’m there to play and help you enjoy it and I hope you’re there to enjoy it and I appreciate that we can play it.”
Music, Gill says, has the power to spur inspiration for both artists and audiences.
“The creative process of playing music is, to me, the purest form of democracy that I’ve ever seen when you gather people together for one common goal — and that’s to create something, and how we all work together to make that happen is pretty great. I wish our country could find a way to do that,” he laughs.
Transcending memory is another one of music’s powers, Gill says, as he recalls hearing “How Great Thou Art” as his first musical memory. Carrie Underwood and Gill recently performed the gospel standard together on the Academy of Country Music television special “Girls Night Out,” with Gill adding a sweet, soulful lead on his Fender Stratocaster.
“I know that for me, that the sound of music has compelled me and moved me since I was a baby,” he adds.
While Gill says he’s traveled the country touring, Louisiana draws him in with great food, people and good times, and he’s always up for a visit with his friend Sonny Landreth. Cajun music, Gill says, is “infectious.”
“It is some of the best feeling music you could ever want to hear,” he continues. “Just the way that they make the music dance and the groove that they play with is unlike anything I’ve ever heard.”
Known for bluegrass and country music alike, Gill says authenticity is what entices people to listen to any genre of music. He points to the Stanley Brothers and Bill Monroe as bluegrass “steeped in tradition,” and Merle Haggard and George Jones as country music classics.
“For me, when it’s honkytonk, it’s beer-drinking sounding, it’s all those things — that’s what I enjoy, those things that are real.”
Gill’s new album should debut this fall and he has a single set to release late during the summer.
“I love trying to create something that’ll move somebody and that never stops,” he says. “I don’t think you ever feel like you’re done. I think great songs last a lifetime.”
Louisiana's 21 casinos took in $203.5 million statewide in June, edging up one-half of a percentage point from a year earlier.
Three bedroom Sunset Victorian or three bedroom Opelousas Acadian home
Louisiana designer commissioned for NYC Awards gift
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education is considering whether to get involved in a lawsuit against Gov. Bobby Jindal for his attempts to undermine use of the Common Core education standards in Louisiana's public schools.
Business First Bank has announced plans for a Baton Rouge market expansion through a merger deal with American Gateway Financial Corp.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The latest meeting of a south Louisiana flood board that stirred political turmoil with a lawsuit against the oil and gas industry is taking place amid uncertainty over the future of the lawsuit — and the board's own membership.
The photos taken nearly a mile under the Gulf of Mexico are so clear that small holes are visible in a lifeboat that may have gone down or been scuttled when a passenger ship was sunk by a Nazi submarine in 1942.
Advocate columnist and Jindal shill Quin Hillyer has been against the New Orleans levee board lawsuit from day one, but a recent piece targeting author/activist John Barry prompted the perfect rebuttal from the board’s former vice-president, who takes Hillyer to task on just about every distorted claim he’s made on the issue.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
INDEats and EatLafayette want to give one lucky foodie and friends the most memorable meal — here’s how you can win
Pat Bowlen steps down; typhoon caused Taiwan plane crash; Arizona execution botched and more national and international news for Thursday, July 24, 2014.
Thousands of people who bought health insurance through the marketplace created by the federal health care overhaul face price hikes next year that could top 10 percent.
Three bedroom traditional Lafayette home or three bedroom Breaux Bridge home
Style market slated for old Artesia
The city prosecutor has released the case file for Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion’s simple battery complaint against Superintendent Pat Cooper, and the seven witness statements given to police illustrate two very different scenarios.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana fell one spot in an annual national ranking of child well-being that looks at poverty, education and health access.
A federal judge has decided he doesn't need to hear more arguments in the case of a gay couple who want a Louisiana marriage license.
Saints again bring playoff aspirations into 2014 campaign.
New details in the case against the man arrested for last week’s bomb threat and bank robbery has surfaced, including a MidSouth Bank surveillance video showing the alleged suspect attempt an early-morning bank robbery.
Citing conflicting witness accounts, the city prosecutor will not pursue Tehmi Chassion’s allegation of simple battery against Superintendent Pat Cooper.
Smoked meat, fresh sides and the best boudin around
Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers opens on Johnston.
Cirque du Soleil effortlessly combines circus art with beloved Michael Jackson hits.
Kelly Guidry Open House
Parents and teachers who support the Common Core education standards sued Gov. Bobby Jindal Tuesday over his actions against the multi-state standards, accusing him of illegally meddling in education policy.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
An arrest was announced this morning in connection with last week’s bomb scare at UL Lafayette.
Attorneys, judges and others interviewed by LaPolitics expect 15 to 20 district judge races this year.