For fans of country music, the well-known and much beloved Eli Young Band will be performing at the Sweetwater Pavilion in Fort Wayne on July 13.
Eli Young Band has continued to build their reputation and musical repertoire during their 17 years of writing and performing music. Clinging to their Texas roots, EYB has become recognized for their deep commitment to the writing and performance of their music.
With a catalogue of awards and nominations under their belts, the band has established themselves as a force to be reckoned with in the country music world. Best known for hits such as “Crazy Girl” and “Drunk Last Night,” EYB has returned from a two-year hiatus to publish and perform their latest album, This Is Eli Young Band: Greatest Hits.
In a recent interview, guitarist James Young commented on the band’s upcoming tour.
“We are feeling super excited,” Young said. “We’ve got new music in the works. We’ve just had a number one hit, so with that momentum it just feels so great. Being able to go out and see people singing along with the new songs is great, and summer is our busiest season.”
Starting in Birmingham, N.Y., the band will tour the country this summer and end in their old stomping grounds of Texas.
This tour, however, holds a special place in the band’s history as they are performing their first greatest hits album.
“When we were getting artwork together, it was fun to go back and look and see where we came from,” Young said. “The reason we did greatest hits — they weren’t all number one hits — but a lot of them were songs that, when we starred in Texas, were just songs that kind of brought us here. You know, the ones that if we don’t play them in a show, we get angry fans. They are the bookends of the chapter of our lives musically.
“We’ve been around for a little bit, and some people may know us from older songs. This is a way to catalog what songs are special to us and to our fans throughout the years and document that on an album.”
“Love Ain’t” was the first song to hit the airwaves from the band’s newest album, and it provided fans a preview of the successful album to come after hitting No. 1 on Billboard’s Country Airplay. The song is full of tender lyrics and emotional insight into what love is and what it “ain’t.” It clearly portrays how the band’s values are reflected in their sound and image.
“Love Ain’t” isn’t the only hit coming from the album, however. Released Friday, June 21, the band released a new single, “Break It In.”
When asked about the latest release, Young responded, “The song is about if it’s good now, just wait until you break it in. It can go anywhere for your life or love, kind of like the baseball glove analogy. For us…that is the stuff we are kind of doing with our lives right now. Everything you’ve got to work and break it in. It could be a metaphor for the band, because we’ve been a band for this long, and life is good now.”
This year has been an exhilarating return for the band. A new album, a number one hit, and an upcoming tour — it is exciting to anticipate what the band will do next.
One thing is certain, however. The band’s roots help to keep them grounded, thriving, and successful.
“For us, we were friends before we started this band, so we always knew how to check each other as far as going into a business and being a band,” Young said. “It started as a friendship first, so I think that is kind of where we came from, friends first, band second. So that has always prevailed.”
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July 27 • The Clyde