It’s no secret that country superstar Vince Gill will be gracing the Dayton area with his presence very soon.
Gill’s show at the Fraze Pavilion on Monday, Aug. 13, has been all the buzz among fans in the area over the past few months. Extra anticipation and excitement have been building surrounding the show as Gill was hired last year to tour with the Eagles to fill a void that was left after the passing of the band’s vocalist-guitarist, Glenn Frey.
Wanting to get an impression of how the star, who released his latest album, “Down to My Last Bad Habit,” earlier this year, feels about his upcoming visit to the Gem City, K99.1FM’s Frye Guy caught up with Gill earlier this week by phone. (Listen to the interview)
Frye: We are super excited to have you come to the Fraze here in the Dayton area. It’s a great place to play and we're thrilled to have you coming.
Gill: Looking forward to it! I have a lot of great memories of being in Ohio. My dad lived in Ohio the last 20 years of his life, so I have a lot of memories in that great state.
Frye: Vince, you released your 18th album earlier this year and with your original label MCA. It's no secret that you feel a real sense of accomplishment when you record new music and finish a big project like this CD, "Down to My Last Bad Habit."
Gill: A friend of mine said that to me at breakfast one morning. I asked how he was doing and he said, “Oh I’m doing fine, I’m down to my last bad habit.” And I said, “Dude that’s a song.” I said, “I’m gonna go home and write that, do you care?’” And he said, “Nah, nobody’s buying your records any more, have at it.”
Frye: Vince, the great artists from the ‘90s continue to go strong, Reba (McEntire) was just here, Sammy (Kershaw), Aaron (Tippin) and Collin (Raye) are doing their Roots and Boots gig just three nights before your show here at the Fraze. Can you speak to the power of your generation in country music and why there's such staying power?
Gill: I think anybody that has longevity as an artist is because of songs. You know, Reba’s had such a great history of so many great songs. And that’s what creates the years of being able to do what we do ... people enjoy the songs. You know, they like the singer, too, but what they really like are those songs. ... I’ve been fortunate ... I’ve come up with a few memorable songs over the years that people like and that allows me to keep showing up and people want to hear them.
Frye: Everybody wants to know about your incredible experience with the Eagles! How did this come about? Did you approach them, did they approach you?
Gill: Well it came about through something very sad that happened, the passing of Glenn Frey. (He) was a longtime friend of mine and I’ve known most of those guys for quite awhile and I don’t think they thought they’d go out and work again. I think they maybe thought they should close up shop, but after a little bit of reflection and time went by — once again, I talked earlier about the power of songs and that band has easily the greatest collection of songs of any American band in history and it bears that out that we’re still out there getting to play these songs.
Frye: What kind of influence do the Eagles have on you, personally?
Gill: Huge. As big as anybody. Hands down, I’ve got old tapes of me as a kid 15, 16 years old singing “Peaceful Easy Feeling” and learning their songs and they had a big impact on country music, too, people don’t give them the credit they deserve. They influenced country music as much as (Merle) Haggard and (George) Jones and all the greats. There’s enough people out there emulating the way they made records, the way that they wrote songs, the way they did harmonies. All those things were very very influential on the future of what country music became. Country music didn’t really embrace the Eagles much in the ‘70s because I think they kind of looked at them as a country-rock, long-haired this and that, and in those days, weren’t willing to accept that they really were pretty country. Time has changed that. It’s pretty powerful to get to stand on the stage and hear the respect and the response to that legacy of songs.
Frye: From time to time, you do shows for a great cause and speaking of that, your show at Fraze will be benefiting Holy Trinity Church in downtown Dayton. It’s one of the oldest churches in the Dayton area. … When you do a performance like that it’s just gotta be that much more special for you to get up in front of everybody when you know you’re helping a great cause in the community here in Ohio.
Gill: I couldn’t have said it any better than you just did. When you’re out there at the end of the day, your fellow man is going to get the benefit from the kindness of others. That’s the reason to get up and go do something in the day. You can spread some kindness to a stranger every day, we’d have a whole lot better of a world to live in.
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