5-Minute Sit-Down with Country Band Dalton and the Sheriffs
Rock the South 2018 rolled through Cullman, Alabama again this June and with it brought some of the best in country music. The stage came alive with Hank Williams Jr. and Eric Church but before those acts took to the stage the crowds were treated to some new and upcoming artists. I had the pleasure of not only watching one of these bands but I also got to sit down and talk with them after their set to learn more about Dalton and the Sheriffs.
Dalton and the Sheriffs hail from Boston area except for Ryan who is from Buffalo, New York. They are not new to Rock the South. They were on the small stage the previous year and were excited to be invited to perform on the main stage this year to perform for the nearly 30,000 fans that attended this year’s Rock the South. They have an awesome sound that I truly enjoyed listening to. As I sat in the audience I watched the crowd and listened to the reactions and comments. Everyone LOVED them. The crowd was on their feet and cheering. I heard fans singing along. I even heard people talking about how they had not heard of them but how much they really loved their music. Sometimes the best interview a writer or reporter can do is just simply observe a crowd’s reaction and the crowd loved Dalton and the Sheriffs. I would soon know that the love went both ways. The band asked if we would mind waiting for them to visit with the fans for a few before we did the interviews. That spoke volumes to me. They knew that at the end of the day that the fans are what truly matters and that is a good thing. So, when it was my time to have a few minutes I tried to make it quick because I knew they were tired. Well in my haste I did not get the names with the faces so for that I apologize but I hope to see them at Rock the South 2019 and I will for sure get their names then. But I did get this information to share with you all.
Rachel Bryant: When did you all get together?
Band: The band kind of grew organically, from acoustic shows I was doing. We fell upon this line up about 2 and a half years ago about that time we got a deal with Bud Light which put us on a college tour of SEC football games and things went well so they throw us shows and we played CMA Fest last year. We did Rock the South on the side stage last year. We did a show in Charleston, South Carolina last year. If they have a show and they need support acts they will bring us down. They gave us a Bud Light van so we drive there like crazy.
RB: What was your first official “gig”?
Band: I (Brian) got into the game pretty early on, right when country music was getting really big in Boston. So, we got to open for a lot of bands in Boston simply because we were the only country like bands in the Boston area. So, we got a lot of calls for that stuff. We got a call to play the ‘Battle in Bristol’ when Virginia Tech and Tennessee played, and we opened for Jon Pardi and Sam Hunt with an audience of 20,000 people before the football game.
RB: What is the largest crowd you have played for?
Band: That is the largest amount of people but Rock the South has been the largest stage we have ever played on by far.
RB: What does the future look like for Dalton and the Sheriffs?
Band: I (Brian) can only really speak for myself but since they keep showing up I guess that means they are on board as well and have the same goals but I just want to keep playing and keep making a living by playing music. Right now that means making a lot of really bad routing choices doing tours. Like driving all the way down to Alabama to do shows but we are willing to work. As long as there is a stage and they can put us on it so we can be there then we will be there.
RB: Where can your fans see you next?
Band: We are going to CMA Fest next weekend. We are actually playing on the news in Nashville on NBC on Tuesday at Noon. Then we are playing the CMA Fest on Sunday at the Acoustic Corner Stage at 1:00 P.M. Central. Then we are playing Philadelphia in between because we have poor routing skills. Well, we had one route built then people offered us more gigs, so we were like “Yeah let’s do that”. We are actually flying our sound guy home because he has to be back when we originally planned to be back, so he can stay and do the news thing.
RB: Do you have social media that fans can find you on?
Band: The number one thing we use is Instagram @daltonsheriffs it is the only thing that gets out to people without having to pay for it. It is really organic still. I don’t know how long it will last if you interact with someone on Instagram it actually gets to that person.
RB: One last question, Fan Fest is known worldwide for our Walker Stalker Conventions. As I was looking on your website www.daltonandthesheriffs.com I found your song ‘Zombie’. I was hoping you would play it because I wanted to hear the entire song.
Band: Laughing…we apologize…you should have yelled “PLAY ZOMBIE” everywhere we go we have people yelling “Play Zombie”.
RB: With that being said, are any of you ‘Walking Dead’ Fans?
Band: (2 members say yes again did not get names…yes, I know bad interviewer, but I was trying to hurry)
RB: How did you feel about Andrew Lincoln leaving after this season?
Band: One member says he hated to hear the news. Now see this is where I SHOULD have said SPOILER ALERT, but I did not. Instead, I suddenly felt like I kicked a sick puppy in front of a sick child because the other band member had NOT heard the news that our “beloved sheriff” had announced that he was leaving ‘The Walking Dead’. When the look of shock crossed his face, I realized I should have probably asked how the weather was in Boston or did they know the cute kid who yodels would be there later that night, anything but the bad news about Rick. So, at that point, the southern thing to do would have been to buy this young man a nice cold beverage for ruining his day but I did not I just tried to wrap up the interview so he could escape the tent and cry in private…oh, wait that was me who had tears in their eyes…hey don’t judge me I have invested 9 years into Rick Grimes I can cry as long as I need to…sorry back to Dalton and the Sheriffs.
These guys had a great sense of humor. They love their fans. I must also say for a group of fellas from the “big city” they know their country music. This band is amazing. They have a unique style. They are close enough to a rock band but also close enough to a country band, that either fan base will love them. They were fun and laid back which is what every interviewer hopes for when it comes to interviews. I hope you will check out their music for yourself and catch them the next time they make a badly routed tour stop in your next of the woods.