House of Blues Ended 2019 and Kicked off 2020 with Blackberry Smoke!

House of Blues Orlando, Florida rocked in the New Year, December 31, 2019, with Blackberry Smoke’s “Till the Wheels Fall Off Tour”, supported by Bishop Gunn from Natchez, Mississippi. House of Blues Orlando is located in Disney Springs at The Walt Disney World Resort. The night was abuzz at Disney Springs, and inside the House of Blues, it was magical.

Doors opened at 8:30 pm, two hours later than usual to accommodate the traditional, New Year’s Eve midnight countdown. Bishop Gunn came on stage at 9:30 and played a 10-song set with great emotion and intensity. Travis McCready’s vocals had a bluesy tone and the range high enough to cover “Ramble On” by Led Zeppelin. Bishop Gunn started their set with “Shine,” a country blues song of the South, shining through in a Wilson Pickett flair, from their first album “Natchez” released in May 2018.

In 2018 Rolling Stone Magazine included Bishop Gunn in their “10 New Country Artists You Need to Know.” I’m not quite sure I would match their genre as country. They definitely got my attention and all those in attendance loved their performance.


Travis McCready – Vocals, Harmonica, Guitar
Drew Smithers – Guitar
Burne Sharp – Drums
Ben Lewis – Bass



  1. Shine
  2. On My Way
  3. What it Do
  4. Sadder Days
  5. Silver Street
  6. Baby What You Want Me to Do
  7. Anything You Want
  8. Turn the Page
  9. Mother Music
  10. Ramble On (Led Zeppelin Cover)


At about 10:45, Blackberry Smoke started their show, combining country, southern rock and blues songs in their set. Over the past 20 years, Blackberry Smoke has gained a wide audience and become a huge fan favorite. Charting number one on both country and rock charts in the US and UK, Blackberry Smoke has had success in multiple genres of music.This night was special, being New Year’s Eve at The Walt Disney World Resort. The crowd was in great spirits, and there were smiles and waves to and from the stage. Charlie Starr has the perfect southern rock voice and he opened the show, belting out “Lord Strike Me Dead” from their 2018 release, “Find A Light.” The tour addition of Benji Shanks as a third guitar next to lead guitarist Paul Jackson, and Preston Holcomb on percussion backing up the steady Brit Turner on drums made a great lineup. Rounding out the rest of band were Richard Turner on bass and Brandon Still on keys, giving Blackberry Smoke a fuller sound synonymous with southern rock bands.

The night and their set seemed to quickly race to the inevitable New Year’s Eve countdown. Charlie Starr started the count down around 15 seconds before midnight. The confetti cannons blasted the hall from top to bottom as the crowd cheered the new year and the band paused on stage for the celebration. The confetti filled the air from my vantage point in the balcony as the fans below with outstretched hands snatched the twisting colored paper out of the air. It was a magical moment I won’t forget. I left the show wanting more, but there is always 2020 as Blackberry Smoke tours and performs about 250 shows a year. I will look forward to seeing them this coming year, as I have never been disappointed in their performances.  


Charlie Starr – Lead Vocals, Guitar
Richard Turner – Bass, Vocals
Brit Turner – Lead Drums
Paul Jackson – Guitar, Vocals
Brandon Still – Keyboards

Benji Shanks – Guitar

Preston Holcomb – Percussion



  1. Lord Strike Me Dead
  2. Run Away
  3. Nobody Gives A Damn
  4. Payback’s a Bitch
  5. Good One Comin’ On
  6. Pretty Lil Lie
  7. Living In The Song
  8. Lucky Seven
  9. Sleeping Dogs
  10. Holy Ghost
  11. Naturally
  12. Mississippi Half Step
  13. Up in Smoke
  14. Lay it All On Me
  15. Ain’t Got The Blues
  16. One Horse Town
  17. Even The Losers
  18. Ramblin’ Man


  1. Flesh N Bones
  2. Deep Elem
  3. Ain’t Much Left of Me