Old Crow Medicine Show performs at the Blue Note on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011.

Old Crow Medicine Show performs at the Blue Note on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011. Photograph by Sara Johnson

Judging by the enthusiasm of the crowd at the Old Crow Medicine Show show last night, it’s no surprise the bluegrass band played to a full house. The sold-out show shook the very foundations of The Blue Note with stomps and screams coming from the plaid-wearing audience.

While the crowd roared with delight, the band jumped back and forth between albums, burning through songs such as “Alabama High-Test” and “Poor Man.” These twangy, quick tunes were just a warm up; the band playfully referred to it as “coughing the dust off [their] lungs.”

When Old Crow Medicine Show belted out, “Well, you made me love you,” from their song “CC Rider,” a small circle cleared around the right side of crowd as one fan took a knee to propose to his girlfriend. Scooping up his new fiancée, the man twirled her around while she eagerly flashed her new ring to her excited friends.

The electricity surging through the crowd was matched, if not empowered, by the unending energy of the band. All six members continually bounced around the stage with the enthusiasm of much younger men. It was easy to spot their passion for music in the spring of their steps and the constant grins on their faces.

Frontmen Ketcham Secor and Willie Watson swapped out their instruments often, hopping from guitars and violins to harmonicas and banjos. The sheer speed of their playing sometimes proved too much for their instruments to handle; furious rhythms led to more than one broken string.

After almost two hours of dizzying tunes and a three-song encore, the Nashville-based band finally left the stage. Fans might have gotten their fix for the night, but it’s a craving that won’t remain satisfied for long.

As Secor told the crowd, “You can drink all the Busch Light you want, Missouri, but you still need a healthy dose of old-time, good-pickin’ banjo.”

—Story by Megan Farokhmanesh, Photos by Sara Johnson

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