SXSW 2018: 25 Best Country, Americana Shows We Saw

From eclectic sets by Devin Dawson and Caroline Rose to star-is-born turns by Billy Strings and Liz Brasher

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Old Crow Medicine Show
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Old Crow Medicine Show

Sony Nashville's Thursday night showcase at Fair Market was dominated by new talent, sponsored by Budweiser and DJ'd by Dee Jay Silver, who spun tacky mash-ups of classic rock, old-school rap and modern country. In other words, it seemed precisely the wrong venue for Old Crow Medicine Show, the venerated old-timey string band who has been working steadily for 20 years. The wondrous thing about their SXSW appearance, however, was how they held the attention of a crowd who was more eager to hear millennial country-pop sensation Kane Brown. Chalk it up to those years spent on the road, experience that has made the group rougher and rowdier, a shift that was evident by their careening opener "Tell It to Me," an old song that's never sounded wilder. Old Crow kept up a high level of energy throughout their set, taking time to plug upcoming album Volunteer, whose nimble songs were a highlight. When combined with the group's cheerful vigor, those new songs suggest that Old Crow Medicine Show are starting to peak some two decades into their career. S.T.E. 

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