Ryan Bingham and the Americans

Saturday, March 23, 2019, 8 p.m.

Where: Belly Up Tavern, 143 S. Cedros Avenue, Solana Beach | get directions

Cost: $35 - $62

Age limit: 21+

Americana singer-songwriter Ryan Bingham may not be breaking any new ground in the roots music field, but it is called roots; you’re not supposed to dig ‘em up. Maintaining sagebrush authenticity isn’t a problem for the New Mexico-born performer, whose voice, looks, and even body language are that of a lonely desert troubadour who probably knocks the dust off his hat between numbers.

He seemed to come out of nowhere in 2009 with his work on the Crazy Heart film soundtrack. Tracks such as the theme song he co-wrote, “The Weary Kind,” earned him an instant shelf full of awards, including an Oscar, a Grammy, and a Golden Globe. However, he’d already released a couple of low key albums before that, both of them modest and quiet with the Cat Stevens-ish persona of someone both wise and snarky. He went decidedly more mainstream, though no less snarky, by regrouping his old band Dead Horses for a one-off release, Junky Star, which remains the highest charting album in his catalogue (number two on the Country chart and number eight on the Rock chart), even if it bears little resemblance to his later aspirations to be the folkie Robin Thicke. He ditched Dead Horses as of his 2012 Tomorrowland album, which charted at number seven, his second highest appearance on the U.S. Country charts to date. However, his most recent studio full-length, Fear and Saturday Night, skipped past Country and instead turned up in the top ten of the U.S. Rock and Indie charts. As such, it’s hard to know what to expect from Bingham’s sixth studio album, American Love Song, which will be brand new when he plays the Belly Up on March 23. He also apparently hopes to be an actor, with roles in A Country Called Home (co-written and directed by his wife, who also helms his music videos) and Kevin Costner’s western TV show Yellowstone, so it remains to be seen if that has diluted his musical focus.


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