Brantley Gilbert was the headliner for day one of KNCI 105.1 “Country in the Park” held at Cal Expo in Sacramento, CA. The annual country music festival is known for showcasing top-tier talent and is in its twenty fourth year. Gilbert was about to hit the stage with the thousands of fans in attendance and it truly was to a sold out crowd.



From the moment Gilbert stepped onto the stage, his commanding presence captivated the audience, setting the tone for an electrifying show. Since this is the “Off the Rails” tour, Gilbert opened his set with that song and instantly ignited the audience with its rebellious energy and hard-hitting beats. He went straight into “Kick It in the Sticks”. The songs raw energy combined with his gravelly voice was already setting the energy level of the evening on ten.


The audience was filled with cowboy hats and trucker caps as the ladies and men were already singing along with every word of the song. By the third song a couple people in the front of the crowd were getting a little unruly but Gilbert had security shut it down real quick so the rest could enjoy the show. Gilbert would continue with hits like “Small Down Throwdown” and “You Don’t Know Her Like I Do”.



Gilbert also showcased his storytelling as he talked about recently almost losing his good friend country artist Colt Ford, the song they wrote together and recorded, and later also was re-recorded by Jason Aldean called “Dirt Road Anthem”. He broke into the song with its infectious beat and catchy chorus had the entire audience dancing and singing along.


Songs like “A Country Boy Can Survive” and “Country Must Be Country Wide” was met with cheers and Gilbert’s genuine appreciation for his fans was clear as he occasionally paused to thank them for their support.



This is not the first time I’ve seen Gilbert perform and his band deserves special mention for their exceptional musicianship. Brantley spearheads the Southern rock, three-guitarist vibe with Noah Henson, Spencer Waasdorp, and Adam Curry. Each member had moments to shine, with guitar solos, layered rhythm sections, and harmonizing vocals. Bassist Delaney Baker and drummer Ben Sims laid down the heavy Southern rock rhythm section perfectly. Kudos to Gilbert for creating such a great backbone to his music.


Gilbert showcased his gritty, powerful vocals on “Son of the Dirty South”. Although the rap portion was originally recorded by Jelly Roll, Gilbert stated he will cover that portion of the track more in the vein of the late Charlie Daniels and it definitely worked. It was rowdy, fun, and a loud!



Gilbert played a fan favorite cover of Kenny Wayne Shepherd’s “Blue on Black”. This was the track he recorded Five Finger Death Punch, Shepherd himself, and the legendary Queen guitarist Brian May. This song has become such a moving tribute to first responders with all the proceeds still going to the Gary Sinise Foundation in support of first responders.


Gilbert went old school yet continued to honor first responders and the military with his patriotic tribute “One Hell of an Amen”. The way that Gilbert builds his set list with powerhouse songs with laid back tracks in between to keep the audience on a roller coaster ride is noteworthy and it shows how much he can control the evening’s atmosphere.



The night closed out with a powerful rendition of “Read Me My Rights”. The raw energy and grit of this song is the essence of Brantley Gilbert as an artist. This was the perfect song to close out day one of “Country in the Park”. Gilberts mix of country, rock, and Southern rock created an unforgettable night of music in Sacramento.







Brantley Gilbert Setlist

Off The Rails

Kick It In The Sticks

The Weekend

Dirty Money

Small Town Throwdown

You Don’t Know Her Like I Do

Dirt Road Anthem (Colt Ford cover)

Bury Me Upside Down

A Country Boy Can Survive (Hank Williams, Jr.cover)

Country Must Be Country Wide

Son of the Dirty South

What Happens in a Small Town

Blue on Black (Kenny Wayne Shepherd cover)

Bottoms Up

One Hell of an Amen

Courtesy of the Red, White & Blue (Toby Keith Cover)

Take It Outside

Read Me My Rights




Mayhem Music Magazine