“Calaveras County” will soon have its live debut in Calaveras County.
The Angels Camp Community Club will present country singer-songwriter Jason Eady in concert at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 27, at Utica Park in downtown Angels Camp.
The first single from his new album, “I Travel On,” is actually a classic country song called “Calaveras County.”
Eady was inspired to write the tune following a visit last summer to play the Red Dirt and Gold Dust Music Festival at the Calaveras County Fairgrounds, a.k.a. Frogtown, in Angels Camp.
The catchy, feel-good country song is reminiscent of Merle Haggard’s “Big City.”
“Well I came up here to Calaveras County, looking for a place to call home,” the song starts.
“There’s a quiet in the air, there’s a breeze off of the mountains, and there’s room for a man to be his own,” Eady sings in the chorus. “Ain’t no strangers here in Calaveras County. At least not any that I’ve ever known.”
“Well there’s gold in these hills, and after all these years they still pull it straight out of the ground,” the final verse states. “It’s easy to hide in Calaveras County. Hide until you’re ready to be found.”
Monday’s concert is free with donations accepted. Organizers ask that concertgoers not bring food or drinks as concessions will be available. All proceeds will help fund new playground equipment at Utica Park.
Below is a recent Q&A with the Texas-based singer:
What inspired your song ‘Calaveras County’?
Our trip out there last summer. I was blown away by how peaceful it was and how great all of the people were. There’s a very relaxed vibe out there that really stuck with me. I actually wrote five verses to that song. The others went into things like Mark Twain and frog jumping, but in the end I had to trim it down to make the song flow.
I wrote the idea down while we were there. I tried to write as many details as I could because I loved the area so much. Then I wrote the song when I got back home.
Does your wife, fellow singer-songwriter Courtney Patton, sing background vocals on the song?
She does. She sings harmony on all of the songs on the new record and did an absolutely amazing job, as always.
Describe your new album ‘I Travel On.’
It’s definitely more of a “feel” record than my previous albums. I still put as much effort into the lyrics as I always do but we also wanted to create something that was fun to listen to even if lyrics aren’t your thing. We tracked everything live and didn’t use any studio tricks. What you hear is how it was played. All at once. All one take. So hopefully that energy comes across as you listen to the album.
Will the upcoming fundraiser in Angels Camp be the live debut of ‘Calaveras County’ in Calaveras County?
Absolutely. We can’t wait to play it there. It will be my first visit back to the area since I wrote the song.
Are you looking forward to the show? What can the audience expect?
Very much. The show is probably a little more high energy than people might expect after listening to my earlier albums. My live touring band played on “I Travel On,” so what you hear on that album is what we’re doing in the live show now. All acoustic instruments with lots of groove, some great picking, and lots of harmony.
Where are you currently on tour now?
Right now we’re right in the middle of a 30 day tour out west. We are currently in Spokane, Washington, and will be making our way over to Seattle and then down the coast on our way to Calaveras County. We can’t wait to get there.