Photo credit: Sarah Elizabeth/Jillian Jacqueline
Don’t you love it when your dreams come true or in this case one of your dream musical collaborations? Back in Podcast #8 Devin Dawson and Jillian Jacqueline were two of my dream collaboration partners. That led us to Devin Dawson and Jillian Jacqueline on the Stray Off Course Tour. For just over two hours, us fans were treated to a fantastic show with two of country music’s up and coming artists.
Jillian started the night off strong, singing all her hits from “Holy Than Thou” (a personal favorite) to fan favorites like “Reasons” and “Tragic” while sprinkling in her latest hit “If I Were You.” Whether behind her guitar or following the crowd left to right, it’s clear the stage is where Jillian is most comfortable. Also clear, her fan following is strong and growing. She had the crowd singing her lyrics back to her with each and every song.
By the time Devin took the stage, the crowd was ready for the guy they came to see.
Leading off with “War Paint” and “Dip” the album’s most lively and upbeat tracks, it’s easy to see Dawson isn’t too far removed from his rock band roots. Long electric guitar riffs, drum solos, and flashing lights at times made you forget this was a country concert. But it’s the songs such as “Asking For A Friend” or “Placebo” that slowed the room down and brought it all back to the music and the lyrics.
Dawson ended the night with “All On Me,” his debut single of 2018 that reached the number two spot on the charts before closing it out with his most personal song, “Dark Horse.” It was the perfect song to end the night, a true and honest “thank you” to his fans who love Dawson and his music as it is.
Without a doubt, the best moment of the night came shortly before the end of Dawson’s set when he brought Jillian back on stage to help sing the song the two co-wrote together in “I Can’t Trust Myself.” Not to be dramatic but this was the moment I had been waiting for since I claimed this two as my dream duet partners back on that October podcast. That moment definitely did not disappoint.
Biggest takeaway: Devin is fantastic and wildly talented, but Jillian is who I see making a huge career for herself and winning CMA and ACM awards year after year. It wouldn’t be the first time one of my predictions came true.