Nestled in the heart of Casselberry Florida lies a hidden gem, Lake Concord Park. Tonight, the park was hosting the city’s Country Rock & Rides show and it was all set to provide an evening of fun, including a vintage car show and great musical performances from Orlando native Bailey Callahan and headliners the Pure Prairie League. Since Lake Concord Park is only 2 minutes from my house, getting there early was a breeze, which is great because I really wanted to check out the cars before the concert.
The variety of cars was impressive, and it was nice to chat with a lot of the owners. A couple of my favorites were a 1972 baby blue Ford Bronco and a jacked-up Jeep, complete with several bulldog ornaments decorating its exterior. Being a Rubicon, and a bulldog owner, it’s no wonder I was drawn to it, “it’s a Jeep thing.” Cruisin Orlando always does a top-notch job with their car shows.
Several Halloween decorations could be seen as I made my way through the tree adorned green lawn toward the stage. A life-size Headless Horseman beckoned to those who had arrived early in hopes of securing a prime viewing spot. This is my favorite time of the year and tonight was going to be fun.
1st up was Orlando’s own Bailey Callahan. The first time I covered Bailey was back in 2019 when she opened for Parmalee and just as before, she was accompanied by bassist Rene Flores. Decked out in cut-off jeans, cowboy boots and a sleeveless jersey, Bailey was also sporting her newly dyed red hair that fit right in with her red guitar. The 1-hour set was packed with both originals and some classic covers. One of the 1st songs of the set was her 2020 single, “Roll,” which the crowd really seemed to enjoy. Now getting back to those classic covers. It takes some chops to crush iconic songs such as Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain,” Bette Midler/Tanya Tucker’s “Delta Dawn,” Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock n’ Roll,” The Cranberries “Zombie,” and Fleetwood Mac’s “Landslide,” but that’s exactly what Bailey did.
Bailey chatted with the crowd and mentioned that she had been playing professionally since she was 10 years old, and that Flores has been her bassist since before she was 6′ tall. After hoisting a tequila toast to the crowd, Bailey went on to perform some more of her original songs including “City Lights,” which she wrote during the pandemic, when she was feeling lost. The final two songs of the performance were “Homemade,” one of my favorites, and last year’s “Higher.” For some people it takes years and years to discover their calling and others might not ever find it. Bailey Callahan is one of the fortunate few that figured it out a really young age, even though she thinks she’s old. I’ve included links to Bailey’s socials at the bottom of the review so please take a moment and give her a follow.
Bailey Callahan: Guitar, Vocals
Rene Flores: Bass, Backing Vocals
Shortly before 7:30 I scrambled over to the VIP area in order to photograph the members of Pure Prairie League along with the city commissioners and city manager. From there it was a beeline to the stage to prepare for the finale. I really love having the opportunity to cover bands and artists that have not only survived the rigorous music industry for multiple decades, but are still out there thriving in it. I’ve covered a few artists that have crossed the half century mark, Judas Priest, Ted Nugent, and Sammy Hagar to name a few. It never gets old and to see the large crowd that showed up tonight was awesome.
Original member John David Call took his spot at the pedal steel guitar and the set got started with a cover of Dillard & Clark’s 1969 single “Kansas City Southern.” Guitarist Jeff Zona and bassist Jared Camic were front and center while Randy Harper manned the keyboards at stage left. Not to be forgotten was drummer Scott Thompson, who has been with the band since 2012. The band gave a nod to former member Vince Gill when they played “Lifetime of Nighttime,” a song written by Gill. Another acknowledgement was made when they played Big Brother & The Holding Company’s “I’ll Change Your Flat Tire Merle,” a tribute to the great Merle Haggard. Harper’s vocals were spot on.
The guys took turns on vocals with Zona assuming the lead on the mega-hit “Let Me Love You Tonight.” Harper joked that if they combined all of their royalties from the song, they could buy a cup of coffee. Thompson got the spotlight for the performance of 1975’s “Two Lane Highway” and Camic nailed “Goodbye So Long.” Toward the end of the set the band began playing “Falling In And Out Of Love” and then went straight into the Pure Prairie League anthem, “Amie.” Harper abandoned his keyboards in order to get in on the guitar action and the crowd loved it. The band sounded exceptional tonight. Pure Prairie League has shows booked through the middle of next year and I would strongly recommend catching one of their shows if possible.
The fans that showed up in droves tonight came expecting good food, nice cars and great music and the event delivered on all accounts. If you are in the Central Florida area and are looking to get outdoors and enjoy great events, you should keep track of the City of Casselberry event calendar. Lake Concord Park hosts a variety of events in a picturesque location.
Pure Prairie League:
John David Call: Pedal Steel Guitar, Banjo,
Scott Thompson: Vocals, Drums
Randy Harper: Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
Jared Camic: Vocals, Bass
Jeff Zona: Vocals, Guitar
1.Kansas City Southern (Dillard & Clark Cover)
2.Early Morning Riser
4.Heart Of Her Own
5.Lifetime Of Nighttime
6.I’ll Change Your Flat Time Merle (Cover)
7.Let Me Love You Tonight
10.Call Me, Tell Me
11.Goodbye So Long
12.Out In The Street
14.Two Lane Highway
15.You’re Mine Tonight
17.Pickin’ To Beat The Devil
18.Falling In And Out Of Love/Amie
19. I’m Almost Ready
Follow Bailey Callahan Online:
Follow Pure Prairie League Online:
I’ve had a love for photography since I was young. Whether it was a Polaroid or a Kodak 110, I was always the kid with the camera. My love of music goes back even further. Nothing beats being at a show when those lights go down and the crowd goes nuts.