Riverbend: Gary Allan Gave The “Best He Ever Had” On Coke Stage

Saturday, June 7, 2014 - by Mark Herndon

Gary Allan is a tough cowboy!  After fighting illness the past few days and even cancelling events. As I picked up my media credentials from Bob Payne w/Friends of the Festival,  the word was his performance was in jeopardy to open on the Riverbend Coke stage.  It was serious as his website www.garyallan.com reported Gary Allan's fan club party scheduled for Saturday evening at Rocketown has been cancelled. 

Allan spent two days this week at the Vanderbilt Voice Clinic with Doctor Gaeyln Garrett. The singer is fighting a viral infection that is impacting the strain on his voice, forcing Allan to cancel the fan club party. The strain is temporary and is expected to resolve as the viral infection runs its course.  However, his Facebook posting and Riverbend Festival Facebook posting confirmed a couple of hours prior to taking the stage he was on his way and the show would go on. 

This eased greatly the concerns for Gary’s health and his schedule performance to the opening crowd of fans awaiting him.  About 30 minutes before Gary Allan was to take the stage, Dex (WUSY US 101) and Amy Morrow (Friends of the Festival Marketing Director) were covering last minute details before Dex was to make the introduction to the fans.   

As I completed my walk around the stage, I met and greeted some of the VIP fans and stage hands. Stage manage Alex was accommodating my walk, routine for the most part, and we discussed the stage setting, at the same time he was talking to Gary on the radio.  All the sound checks had been made earlier and, with the tuning of the guitars in the background, taping down a set list of songs for the band and Gary.   Alex was  to have everything ready as Gary and the band made the transport by boat to the stage.  One request I was privy to hear was to make sure there was plenty of Orange Juice on and around the stage….. Alex delivered!!  

It was a great night with the cool weather as David Glenn, WTCV Channel 9 weather and official Riverbend forecaster, put our fears to rest as his pre-stage forecast.  Gary walked down the platform right on schedule with Tough Goodbye…………. Then as the lights were panned across the riverbanks the unbelievable crowd cheered him into his scheduled 90 minutes of songs. He performed more than 20, including Tough Goodbye, Feeling Like That, Man To Man, Pieces, It Ain’t The Whiskey, Send, Smoke Rings, Sand In My Soul, Get Off On The Pain, Songs About The Rain, Radio, California, Every Storm, Bones, Man Of Me, Air Planes … then as the crowd was overtaken by him and his eight piece band to return with Best I Ever Had and Dark Whiskey….. you will notice a couple of new songs to be included in his new studio album/cd in the works.  

Thanks, Gary… after two hours of the best relaxing night as you beat the illness and the earlier threat of storms that moved around the city last night. 

This year becoming one of the official professional photographers for the Festival provides an opportunity to share with the fans and festival interest a different perspective of stage performance.  

(The photo series is Friends of the Festival management (Riverbend Music Festival (https://www.facebook.com/rbfestival )  and www.Chattanoogan.com  ways of keeping festival fans updated with events throughout the week.  Keep checking these sites and the schedule artist on all stages for event information and photos.)


Judge Wants Proof That Signal Mountain Man Made "True Threat" Against Muslim Town; Robert Doggart Allowed Home Confinement

Federal Judge Curtis Collier has directed attorneys who worked out a plea deal for a Signal Mountain man who admitted plotting to kill Muslims in a town in Upstate New York to show that it was "a true threat." And, Federal Magistrate Susan K. Lee has reversed her earlier ruling and allowed 63-year-old Robert Rankin Doggart to go free pending disposition of the case. Prosecutor ... (click for more)

Smith Says He Was Involved In Robbery Of Man Killed In North Chattanooga, But Another Youth Did The Shooting

A police interview was played in General Sessions Court on Tuesday in which 18-year-old Briston J. Smith Jr. admitted taking part in a drug deal, but he said it was another youth who shot and killed Charles Holsey, 19. Smith said he turned and left when Abram Young allegedly fired shots after Holsey refused to turn over marijuana he was demanding. He said he stated at the time, ... (click for more)

On The News Tonight: A Reflection On A Horrifying Crash And Its Aftermath

On the news tonight,  on the news tonight. The unobtrusive tones on the news tonight. It's just make-believe You can't believe everything you see So baby, close your eyes to the lullabies On the news tonight.   "The News" by Jack Johnson On Journalism On Thursday I was in Jackson, Tennessee playing music. I was a minimum of four hours away ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Tonight, Take A Second

Peter Whibberley, known globally as “The Time Lord,” will freely tell anyone, “There are consequences of tinkering with time,” but tinker we must because the world – planet Earth -- is spinning slower. So tonight at 7:59:60 p.m. EDT, the Senior Research Scientist at Britain’s National Physical Laboratory will add an extra second to the hour – and our day -- before it becomes 8:00 ... (click for more)

Fort Oglethorpe Swimmers Get First Win Of Season

There are a lot of positive and upbeat coaches in the Chattanooga Area Swim League, but perhaps none any more than Fort Oglethorpe veteran Tony Womac. This guy is always happy, always smiling and always offering something positive to those around him. He may have been just a bit more of all the above on Monday night after his Marlins defeated the Cumberland Currents in a home ... (click for more)

John Shearer: A Look At The Origin Of The Lady Vols’ Name

On Wednesday, the University of Tennessee is scheduled to drop the Lady Vols nickname from all women’s sports teams except the basketball squad.   The change has been a source of much debate, particularly in Knoxville. As evidence, several people wanting to keep the Lady Vols name protested last Thursday along Joe Johnson Drive, near where the UT board of trustees was meeting ... (click for more)