2017-03-16 / Arts & Entertainment News

Get to the Garden for Naples City Limits

BY LINDSEY NESMITH

The current state of country music has many longtime fans wondering, “What’s so great about trucks and beer?” and “How did a drum machine make it onto Cat Country?”

Local listeners looking to add a dash of authenticity back into their music’s down-home twang need look no further than the first-ever Naples City Limits festival from 7-10 p.m. Saturday, March 18, at Naples Botanical Garden.

Shane Smith and The Saints take the stage to raise money for the Children’s Advocacy Center.

Part Mumford & Sons and part Creedence Clearwater Revival, the band executes a mix of rock and country with dashes of Celtic, Cajun and folk influences to connect with their audience.

“I think the greater percentage of our fan base is people who are looking for honest, genuine music that sings about things country used to sing about,” frontman Shane Smith says. “You can’t often hear that on the radio anymore. You have to dig for it nowadays.”


Shane Smith and The Saints 
COURTESY PHOTO Shane Smith and The Saints COURTESY PHOTO He describes the band’s show as high-energy and “lyrically very honest.”

The words matter, he says, not only because articulate word play enhances the music and gives audiences another element to connect with, but also because he doesn’t want to sing songs he can’t relate to anymore.

“I just don’t want to write anything that I’m going to regret as an older person,” he says. “If I’m going to be sing- ing when I’m in my 60s, I want to relate to the songs.

“That would be the most frustrating thing ever as a songwriter or band — to have to sing music that you just can’t identify with but that are the songs people want to hear. That’s the ultimate worst. It means nothing to you.”

Mr. Smith, who comes from northwest Texas, is joined by fiddler Bennett Brown, guitarist Tim Allen, bass player Chase Satterwhite and percussionist Bryan McGrath, all of whom have been beating down a demanding tour that has taken them as far afield as Malaysia. It was an extremely cool experience, he says, encountering a different culture that embraced and enjoyed the band’s Americana sound.

Rural communities in the U.S. however, seem to have the most enthusiastic response to The Saints’ work, he adds. “You can tell that their only source to finding music is mainstream radio … they’re a little more taken away with our shows because we’re so different.

“I don’t know that tons of bands end up in Atwood, Kan., and so you can see a difference of reaction in places like that.”

Shane Smith and The Saints will also be joined by local favorite, The Good Bad Kids, for a show that elevates American roots music to a fever pitch.

Naples City Limits is the second part of a fundraiser for the Children’s Advocacy Center of Collier County, which works to improve the lives of abused children. Preceding the concert is the organization’s 21st annual Beach Ball, starting at 5 p.m. in a tent adjacent to the concert site. Guests will enjoy a Fiji-themed gala with food from Lurcat Catering, specialty beverages, raffles and a live auction (among the action lots: four-nights at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival with luxury accommodations, and two tickets to a sold-out Lady Gaga concert in Tampa).

Tickets to Naples City Limits start at $22.50 and go up to $120 for VIP seating and an open bar.

Guests who want to enjoy both Beach Ball Fiji and the concert can purchase a full evening of entertainment for $300. For more information, visit www.caccollier.org or www.nclfestival.com. ¦

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