Wednesday, 21 September 2016 00:16

Roots That Rock ‘N’ Roll Through Atlanta

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“My Uncle Jason spent decades of his life dedicated to playing the drums; like so many, he passionately fought for his love of music and the dream to make that his career. In knowing admiration of his dedication, I asked him to tell me more. In the midst of stories that he played back like a projector on a living room wall, I remember him profoundly saying, “Survival of the fittest is what it takes.” That’s always been a statement I enjoy referencing, but after taking a trip down memory lane with Drivin’ ‘N’ Cryin’s (DNC) Kevn Kinney, I now have living proof.

 Here Kevn talks about his DNC’s 30 years of music, breaking bread and being Atlanta’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Band!” Interviewed by our own Randee Kelly

It’s been a minute since the first Drivin’ ‘N’ Cryin’ show at 688 Club in Atlanta, October 1985. This October, and a handful of reverbs later, you’ll be taking the stage in Atlanta at Rock Chastain 2016. How do you feel about your 30+ years in Atlanta’s musical history? We’re very proud to be a part of Atlanta’s musical history over the last 30 years. It’s always great to have someone come up to me at the grocery store to thank me for being a part of their lives! We tell people on the road – we’re not a Southern rock band, we’re an Atlanta rock ‘n’ roll band.

Rock Chastain is an annual benefit concert for The Chastain Park Conservancy, whose mission is to restore, enhance, maintain, and preserve Chastain Park. Why is this mission important to you? We all have special memories of special moments that took place at Chastain Park. Chastain Park is as important to Atlanta as Little Five Points, The Varsity, Virginia Highlands, The Peachtree Plaza, and East Atlanta.

Having literally played a part in the growth of this city, not only as an artist but also as a resident, how do you feel about where Atlanta is going and how it has changed? My favorite part about the growth of Atlanta is its diversity. Every great international cuisine is represented here. The first place I take a visitor, that has never been to Atlanta, is Buford Highway for its amazing cuisine selection. Then, I’ll take them to the Colonnade Room off Cheshire Bridge! I feel that dining together and learning about new cuisine is a great way to understand one another.

As a writer, are you or have you been influenced or inspired by the environment? When I was a young boy in junior high, I was a member of the Environment Club. I’ve always been interested in the affect people have on the environment and the effect the environment has on the people. I believe that preserving our state parks benefits our individual solace and the respect we have for where we came from. This planet, in time, could shake us off like a bad cold and reclaim itself; its much bigger than we are, and we should do our part to protect it. I’ve always felt like I was a guest here, and, like any good guest, I would like to leave it better than I found it.

Rock Chastain 2016 takes place at the Chastain Park Amphitheatre. How do you like that venue? The amphitheater is a magical wonderland that holds many great memories for me.

Speaking of Rock Chastain, what can we expect for Drivin’ ‘N’ Cryin’ to bring, this year? You just never know. We never have a set performance and we like to be as natural as possible. We wait to read the audience, and then we decide.

Finally, if you could go back in time to any one specific moment with Drivin’ ‘N’ Cryin’, what where and when would that be and why? Tomorrow.