Zach Bryan is truly the gift that keeps on givin’.
He released a live album, All My Homies Hate Ticketmaster (Live from Red Rocks), on Christmas day, which was recorded at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, Colorado.
The project contains all 24 songs from Zach’s debut performance at the legendary venue, including the opening performance of “Country Roads” with Charles Wesley Godwin and Jonathan Peyton, whose performances were canceled at the last minute due to the blizzard on the day of the show.
Actually, Zach wasn’t even sure if he’d wind up going through with recording the live album because of how cold and snowy it was supposed to be, because he was afraid it wouldn’t sound great considering how hard it is to play guitar when your fingers are numb.
Needless to say, it ended up working out, and in announcing the album’s release last week, Zach once again railed against Ticketmaster and the inflated prices for live shows, promising fans that he’s doing all that he can to keep ticket prices low for the “limited number of headline shows” he’ll be playing next year.
It’s probably a little bit petty, sure, but I could not love it more to be honest, and he also promised that a tour announcement is coming soon too:
And with the holidays being a busy time of the year for everyone, and most artists taking a break from touring and hitting the road in early 2023, this is just what the doctor ordered, so to speak.
I don’t have too many concerts planned for the first month or so starting in January, which means I don’t really know what to do with myself right now… but at least I can feel like I’m at a Zach Bryan show for a few minutes with these songs.
Of course, Zach puts on an electric live show, and it’s super high-energy and fun, so I love that he decided to record it all for fans to hear anytime they want. For me, live albums typically aren’t anything to write home about, but this is different because his concerts are just different.
It’s hard to put into words, but he has such an intense and dedicated fan base that buy into every word he sings, so everyone gets really involved and it feels like a real experience, as opposed to just listening to live music out with your friends who are only halfway paying attention.
A few stood out to me in particular, though, that capture all the electricity in a palpable manner, with the crowd going full throttle right along with Zach.
The first being “Heading South,” which, ironically, is about heading home to warm people (and warmer terrain) who let “let you play your music real damn loud.” It was one of the first grainy, lo-fi social media videos he ever put out that went mega viral, so it feels like a full circle moment hearing him singing it at a sold out show at Red Rocks.
It sounds like the Colorado crowd can hang pretty good in the snow, too, as they screamed every single word back to him (not that I’m surprised, really)… and it’s electric:
Next, we have a song that Charles Wesley Godwin, a West Virginia native, is known to perform at every show.
The live version of “Country Roads” with Zach, as well as Jonathan and Abigail Peyton, is amazing, and damn if Charles’ voice isn’t even better recorded live like this. I love that Zach included his openers in this way, too, since they couldn’t do their own sets because of the weather:
And of course, the never-failing crowd pleaser and big finale of every concert Zach plays, “Revival” just hits different, and this live version proves why it’s a staple of his set.
If you’re like me, and already dying for your next live show, this might hold you over for a solid (almost) 12 minutes: