Fly Me To The Moon: A Quick Hello with Kevin Kinney of Drivin N’ Cryin

Watch an exclusive live session from the legendary Georgia band in the wake of a new album, Live The Love Beautiful

Drivin’ N Cryin’ 2019

Live The Love Beautiful is the first full-length from Drivin’ N Cryin’ in a good decade, having delivered their music in EP form these last eight years. And as good as Songs From The Laundromat (EP) (June 2012), Songs About Cars, Space and the Ramones (EP) (September 2012), Songs From The Psychedelic Time Clock (EP) (March 2013) and Songs For The Turntable (EP) (January 2014) all were, there’s something about experiencing a complete album by this group that just commands our attention.

Look it’s been that way for 35 years, ever since the Atlanta-based outfit first released their debut recording Scarred But Smarter. This band–led by the intrepid Kevin Kinney–created something of a natural bridge between the twin bubbles of Southern rock and what was then called “college rock” that existed in the Peach State: The Allman Brothers Band produced by Mitch Easter, in a way. And on Live The Love Beautiful, DNC simply continues to grow better with age, working alongside fellow Americana street survivor Aaron Lee Tasjan behind the boards and a killer new guitarist in former Sturgill Simpson axe-man Laur Joamets on what at least this writer considers their best album since 1993’s highly underrated Smoke.  One can clearly ascertain the promise of this bold new lineup from the warmth exhibited by the band in this live in-store performance at Record Stop in Charleston, SC. where they play three of the album’s finest tracks in “Step By Step”, “Over and Over” and “Ian McLagan”, written in honor of the legendary Small Faces keyboardist who spent his last years as a local hero on the Austin, TX music circuit.

The RNR Globe is proud to share with you this exclusive footage along with a quick e-mail interview with Mr. Kinney.

Live The Love Beautiful is available at finer record shops everywhere.

 

I’d love to hear the story behind the artwork for this album. What is the correlation for you between the astronaut and the roses (or flowers)?

Space is universal

Life is universal

When I first sent Jeremy ( The Real Frank T) some of the song titles, he sent me dozens of images.

For some reason, the image of the astronaut just clicked.

I love the fact that anyone could be in that suit …

 

Advert for Mattel’s Major Matt Mason toys

 

Where were you 50 years ago when the man landed on the moon? How much did that moment impact your life and creativity?

I was watching with my family.

I was 8.

And space and rockets were an eight-year-olds dream!

When I look at old scrapbooks from 1969 there are a lot of Major Matt Mason

Space toys.

Every space launch up until then was a big deal.

Everyone in America was focused on the same thing at the same time.

 

Drivin’ N Cryin’ Live The Love Beautiful, Drivin’ N Cryin’ Records 2019

 

Free Ain’t Free. It’s a term I’ve always associated with American jingoism but the way the song turns it on its head is quite profound. Was there a particular news story or related experience that inspired this song?

It’s just a daily reality of living in any growing city in America.

I see it happen every time I walk out the door.

I’m disturbed by reclamation if old neighborhoods.

That leaves no space for the family community and history.

Of what kept this neighborhood relevant and working.

Free ain’t free.

And land is more than dirt and convenience.

Family and community are sacred to me.

 

Mac and Keith

 

Let’s talk Ian MacLagan. Such a great song and true to Mac’s spirit. He made music that made you believe he traveled with an entourage but he was his own roadie. Was he always a hero of yours?

Of course.. along with dozens of tornadoes that could have just done ONE great thing and then sat at a bar telling the same old stories.

It’s a song dedicated to some of my influences and friends like Lenny Kaye , Peter Buck Steve Wynn, as well as Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson and Kieth Richards …

Keep on keepin’ on.

 

Your Island Records debut Mystery Road turned 30 this year.  Did you ever get the masters back for that album or Fly Me Courageous or Smoke? I ask both out of concern in light of that story about the Universal Records fire and if there was ever a general discussion about the DNC back catalog?

I’m not sure about that!

I would love to remix it a bit but I have no idea where to start.

Maybe we can re-record it with Laur.

The live versions on the latest tour are some of favorites.

Hmmmm … I love that idea.

Stay tuned.

 

VIDEO: Drivin’ N Cryin’ three-song set at Record Stop in Asheville, SC

Ron Hart

Ron Hart is the editor of Rock and Roll Globe. Reach him on Twitter @MisterTribune.

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