Charlie Daniels and the Las Cruces Country Music Festival

On April 25, 2014, my wife and I made the short drive from our home base in El Paso, Texas to check out the Country Music Festival being held up the road in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Although this was a four-day affair from the 24th to the 27th of April, we chose this day to visit because the concert headliner that night was the Charlie Daniels Band. Considering that I had been a CDB fan since my college days back in the late 1970’s, this was a show I didn’t want to miss.

We were fortunate enough to arrive about an hour before show time and were able to claim front row seats at this outdoor event. Before the Charlie Daniels Band took the stage, there were two opening acts: Chase Bryant and James Wesley. Although I wasn’t familiar with either act, they both have Nashville recording contracts and each put on a good show with very talented bands backing them up.

Between the seating area and the stage was a big open area where couples were able to do a little dancing to the music. Because I was weighted down with my camera gear, I had to pass on doing any two-stepping and my wife let me know she wasn’t happy about it. Oh well, I was there to hear some music and take some photos and that was plenty good enough for me.

This first set of photos is of Chase Bryant and his band. I thought it was funny that his bass guitar player looked an awful lot like rocker Lenny Kravitz.





Next up are photos of James Wesley and his band.





Finally, it was time for the headliner, the Charlie Daniels Band. Just before the band took the stage, a huge crowd of people suddenly rushed the dance floor area in front of us and we then chose to abandon our seats and gradually work our way up to the front of the crowd. Although a drunk guy playing air guitar made an unplanned appearance on stage and had to be escorted off stage by a member of the band crew, the crowd was otherwise well-behaved and everyone had a good time.

It’s been reported that Charlie Daniels is 77 years old, but he still performs with the energy of a man half that age. He and the entire band put on an awesome show with an incredible display of musicianship.










Coincidentally, the following night the Charlie Daniels Band put on a show 800 miles to the east in Spring, Texas, just north of Houston, where my daughter and son-in-law were able to catch the show. They enjoyed it just as much as we did.

To see the entire gallery of my photos from this concert, please check this Link.

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  1. Where were you positioned when you got these great shots, Ray? I am so THERE!

    • Hi, Melodie. I was fortunate to have a good spot about 20 feet back from the stage and I eventually managed to work my way all the way up to the front. Thanks for the kind words!


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