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Concert Review: Dylan Marlowe

My first experience with Dylan Marlowe was during the recent Morgan Wallen tour in Atlanta, GA. The concert was at the Atlanta Brave’s Stadium, and Dylan performed almost three hours before Morgan Wallen. It was cold and rainy, and only one-fourth of the sold-out stadium had arrived at that point when Dylan came on stage and filled the entire stadium with energy. I had heard his name before and had a handful of songs in my rotation, but I had no idea that his performance would be the most entertaining of the evening (no offense, Morgan). By the time the main act started, I had seen three country artists perform: Dylan Marlowe, Bailey Zimmerman, and Parker McCollum. Comparing them after the show, my friends and I could not help but keep saying that Dylan Marlowe was something special. So, when I found out that he was going on tour, and that tickets to his show in Columbia were $15 a piece, I had no other option but to click the “Checkout” button on his ticketing website.  

My Dylan-Marlowe-obsessed boyfriend and I arrived at the venue a couple of hours early. New Brookland Tavern had recently moved from its location in West Columbia to Five Points in Columbia, so we figured getting there early wouldn't hurt. Due to our early arrival, we were the first in line. An hour or so later we entered the venue and crammed as close to the front as possible (this was a general admission, “standing room only” type of show).  

Before Dylan Marlowe performed, a small band called Old Hickory performed a 45-minute set. This band, located out of Nashville, is seriously a group to watch out for (I will be writing more about them in the future). They played a mix of their songs as well as covers to keep the audience moving and had great crowd interactions throughout their entire set.  

This type of energy carried into Dylan Marlowe's performance about 15 minutes after Old Hickory finished. He opened with my personal favorite song, “I’ll Keep the Country” where he took up the entire stage. Although there were little to no dance elements in his routine, it seemed as though he knew exactly when and where to move around the entire night. Not only did it seem like he knew what he was doing, but it seemed like he loved it. You really wouldn’t be able to wipe a smile like that off someone’s face, especially his. Throughout the night he expressed great gratitude for his fans and thanked them in between almost every song. 

Halfway through his set, he slowed it down and performed a few acoustic versions of his songs while propped on a stool. I LOVE when artists do this- it makes for such an intimate moment between the performer, the audience, and the music. For Dylan, however, he took this time to interact with the crowd and talk to them. This kind of crowd work and meaningful moments truly make him feel more like a friendly face than some sort of celebrity. It feels like you could “grab a beer with him,” which not only contributes to his country artist brand but is also very valuable in building a strong fan base. If there is an algorithm for building a strong and supportive audience, Dylan Marlowe and his team have figured it out.  

During his performance “lull” Dylan performed his new song, “You Did It Too” and his voice sounded exactly like the recording I have on my playlist (did I forget to mention this guy is talented??) To transition to the end of his concert he performed a cover of Taylor Swift’s “Back to December” which was such a fun and lighthearted way to bring the energy back for the end of his show where he closed out the night by singing “You See Mine” followed by “Boys Back Home.” 

As a frequent concertgoer, it is hard to rank all the artists and performances that I’ve seen, but I can assure you that Dylan Marlowe’s performance is in my top five. Between his connection with the crowd, high energy, and show-stopping vocals, he has everything he needs in his toolbox to become the next big thing in country music, and I cannot wait to see what he does next.  

Cover photo courtesy of Dylan Marlowe's Website

Amelia Feist

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