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Power Trio-able Contemporary Country Songs

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by ToadMcFrog, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. (My apologies to fans of the English language for the word "trio-able." It won't happen again.)

    My band is a classic rock power trio. 'Round these parts, however, we are asked to play country from time to time. Unfortunately, none of us are huge country fans so we find it difficult to come up with country songs that are doable as a three piece. Listening to the radio to come up with trio-able (I lied) songs is a sure path to madness.

    So country fans - what are some newish country songs that can be pulled off as a three piece?
  2. BaddaBING

    BaddaBING Supporting Member

    Jun 27, 2011
    Near Philadelphia PA
    Red solo cup. Great bar tune.
    Friends in low places
    Long haired country boy
  3. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    That's going to be a tough one. When you have a major label star making an album in Nashville, they pull out all the stops. There will be 4 guitar parts, pedal steel, fiddle, Hammond organ and piano just because they can. Live isn't much different either.

    "Hillbilly Delulxe" is pretty much a rock song that you could pull off as a trio.

    "Save a Horse Ride A Cowboy" (also a redneck rock song) you could do as long as at least two of you sing.

    "Boots On" (Randy Houser)

    Lots of Jason Aldean, but I would go with "She's Country" (they use Nesa Triple Recitiers for Christs sake...... they're a rock band)

    "Backwoods" Justin Moore

    ANY version of "Get Your Shine On" by Florida Georgia Line would be REALLY hot right now. That's a HUGE current hit.

    ANY version of "Fishin' in the Dark" by Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. You could water down the music for a 3 piece and the audience won't care because they'll be too busy singing.

    Jason Aldean - "Hicktown" Say what you want, that's an in your face rock song with spit on it.

    Eric Church - "Drink in my Hand"

    Any version you can swing of Zack Brown Band "Chicken Fried" or "Toes"
  4. Okay, Red Solo Cup sounds like a great late-night-everyone's-drunk song...dig it.
  5. Yeah, that's what I meant about listening to the radio being a path to madness - in a listening session several hours long, I didn't identify any songs that I thought were doable as a trio. Going through the country charts wasn't much better, so I needed someone that knew what they were talking about to point me in the right direction.

    Great suggestions there, thanks! Toes is one that we actually do in a paired down, really simple way that goes over well. I'm going to bring up everything you suggested here and see what sticks with the guys. I think Drink in My Hand will be a natural - it even kind of fits my voice.
  6. Fast As You by Dwight Yoakam
    Drinking Bone by Tracy Bird
    Any Johnny Cash
  7. sleeplessknight

    sleeplessknight Supporting Member

    Mar 8, 2002
    Wagon Wheel. Either the Old Crow Medicine Show original or the Hootie cover.
  8. I don't know why we hadn't though of Fast As You - we do Guitars, Cadillacs and it's always well received. I think that will definitely be a good addition. We also do Folsom Prison Blues, so maybe some more Johnny Cash is in order.

    I dig Drinking Bone as well - good call!

    Thanks for the suggestions!
  9. We just added that one within the past couple of months - even without the fiddle and other instrumentation, I think that one will go over well. I think our saving grace on that one is three part harmony...

    Thanks for the input!
  10. Deep Cat

    Deep Cat Supporting Member

    What I know about country could probably fit into my non-existent truckers cap, but a simple rule of music applies. Pretty much any tune can be broken down and translated into about anything else.

    Country, relies on some pretty consistent and well known chord changes under a well defined vocal melody. Any country song worth its broken down truck can be played with an acoustic guitar and sung by a guy or gal on the front porch. That can be translated into a power trio pretty easily.
  11. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    Little Sister will work.
  12. I agree with that, especially with regards to the front porch guitarist. I don't doubt that we as a band could put versions together of songs that wouldn't totally suck, but at the end of the day I want to feel like I did the song justice and I want the non-inebriated country fans in the audience to feel the same way. (The inebriated people...well, they will pretty much like anything.)

    Of course, finding a song where that's possible with just guitar, bass, and drums is more art than science. Sometimes, it just doesn't feel right when we try a song, even if all three of us think going into it that it will work.

    That said, I also have a Keith McMillen 12 Step hooked to a MacBook Pro that I can play very simple organ parts on while I'm playing bass as long as I'm not the one singing. It's saved a couple of songs that otherwise would not have been doable, but that doesn't work for anything where organ is really central. And since I end up singing most of the country...well, I don't get to use it for most country songs.
  13. Yeah, the more I think about it the more I think we just troll through Dwight's whole catalog and see what we can do. Even better: I find that I actually like his stuff.

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