Niagara Gazette

Night & Day

September 5, 2013

Catching up with rising country music stars Florida Georgia Line

Night & Day — Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard were college friends studying at Belmont University in Nashville for careers in the music industry. In between classes, they wrote songs, and on the weekends they would perform in local clubs.

With Kelley from Florida, and Hubbard from Georgia, the group is aptly named Florida Georgia Line, and they are one of the hottest country music acts around. As a testament to that, their show at Braun’s Concert Cove tonight in Akron sold out in days. It is the hottest ticket in town.

On the strength of their debut single, “Cruise,” which has sold over 5 million units, the band landed a coveted spot opening up for another country superstar, Taylor Swift.

During a recent phone interview, I asked FGL’s Brian Kelley to talk about the experience.

“We did 11 dates with Taylor Swift earlier this year and we caught every one of her performances. We learned so much from her, she is a pro and that is why she plays to thousands and thousands of people every night.”

As FGL is poised to take their show to the next level as a major headliner, they have been taking mental notes of what other country superstars do.

“We are always dreaming and always wanting to create. Luke Bryan has an amazing show as well and we soaked up a lot of that as well,” Kelley said.

In just a few short years, the duo, sometimes compared to Big & Rich or Brooks & Dunn, has gone from playing small clubs to award winning country music stars.

“We’ve been touring since 2009, and since then a lot has changed. We just can’t talk enough about our fans and country music radio, they have been amazing. Everything that has happened just blows our minds. We started writing songs on the tailgate of Tyler’s truck, and now we have CMT awards and ACM awards, and now the amazing thing is that we feel like a part of the country music community.”

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