We’re with the Band: The Cowpokes
Four Seasons Hotel Nashville spotlights the very best of the city’s live music scene
A stay at Four Seasons Hotel Nashville is the perfect jumping off point for a discovery of Music City. Within walking distance of the Hotel are historic performance venues such as The Ryman Auditorium, the lively cover bands of Lower Broadway’s honky tonks, and the more intimate listening rooms that host unique songwriter shows, proving that Nashville’s live music scene has something for everyone.
The Hotel’s team of experts have made it their mission to know every inch of Nashville’s music offerings, to provide guests with the most authentic experiences of Nashville’s live music scene, tailored to their specific interests.
The first edition in this “We’re With The Band” series spotlights the Hotel’s favourite band, The Cowpokes, who have fast become friends with the on-property team, and can often be spotted mingling with Hotel guests at the bar at Mimo between performances, and have even appeared as notable extras in the restaurant and bar’s promotional video. As well as profiling the group, we asked the band’s lead singer and fiddler Kevin Martin a few questions about the band and Nashville’s music scene.
The Cowpokes are an authentic Country & Western two-step dance band that primarily performs songs from the 1940s to the 1960s, with a throwback playing style that showcase the timeless hits of artists such as Ray Price, Mel Tillis, Webb Pierce, Marty Robbins, Bob Wills, and Buck Owens as well as original songs written by members of the band. The band showcases the music of the golden era of country music with lively performances, evident in their classic western performance outfits that are as fun as their live shows themselves.
John McTigue III - Drums
An award-winning drummer and graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, John McTigue III gives The Cowpokes their beat, and has played and recorded with an array of notable artists including Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell. He is also a founding member of The Tennessee Walkers and appears with a variety of other outfits in Nashville.
Kevin Martin – Fiddle/Vocals
Originally from Atlanta, Georgia and a product of Nashville’s Belmont University, Kevin Martin is the front man and arguably the driving force of The Cowpokes, providing outstanding skills on the fiddle and vocals reminiscent of a 1950s country crooner to the band’s performances. An on-stage presence that blends high energy with charm and wit, Martin keeps the crowds dancing and having a good time. No stranger to the bigger stages, Kevin has appeared at The Grand Ole Opry with his other band, The Hogslop String Band, an entertaining Nashville-based old time string band.
Brandon Birkedahl – Guitar/Vocals
A native of Washington State, Brandon Birkedahl is an accomplished guitarist, singer and songwriter who remains quietly spoken and humble, despite the high esteem he is held in across the Nashville music community. Known as a regular in The Cowpokes, The Tennessee Walkers, The Beer Joint Jumpers and other outfits playing weekly in Nashville, Birkedahl is arguably one of the band's busiest musicians throughout the week, juggling a busy family life with two young children with the demands of his performance commitments across the city.
Brendan Malone – Bass/Vocals
On bass, Brendan Malone is a driving force behind The Cowpokes, responsible for establishing its long-standing weekly residency in East Nashville. Someone with a deep passion for the music the band represents, his affable style and approachability endears Malone to the band’s established support, as well as its new and growing fan base.
Andy Gibson – Pedal Steel Guitar
Happy to be one of the more quietly spoken members of the band on the pedal steel guitar, Andy Gibson has a pedigree that only garners the requisite respect he deserves from his peers who know him the best. Andy was Hank Williams III’s steel guitar player, and also recorded and performed on albums from such artists as Bob Wayne, The .357 String Band, and the Honky Tonk Hustlas
Q. How would you describe the music you play?
“We play traditional, old school country music that you can dance to,” explains the band’s front man, Kevin Martin. “It’s the music that made this town famous, and probably the reason why Four Seasons came to Nashville,” he smiles. “We keep it danceable; we keep it alive. As far as being a throwback country and western group, we might be a novelty in this town, but we’re happy to keep this music alive."
Q. Where can Four Seasons guests find The Cowpokes playing a show?
“Every Wednesday at Robert’s Western World from 10:00 pm to 2:00 am and every Friday at Acme Feed & Seed from 12:00 noon to 4:00 pm.”
Q. What advice would you give to our guests visiting Nashville and wanting to experience its music scene?
“Go to the places where the locals tell you to go. Explore off Broadway, such as The Station Inn, go up to Dee’s Country Cocktail Lounge, or into East Nashville. And don’t forget to tip the band!”
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