Dean Crawford’s country tunes to headline Essex Day
It’s not Essex Day without music! Thanks to the partnership with Starleigh Entertainment, the main stage will be rocked by the country musical stylings of Dean Crawford and the Dunn’s River Band starting at 5 p.m.
“We are really excited to sponsor the Essex Day Festival this year,” said Rob Baier, president of Starleigh Entertainment. “This is a great opportunity to get involved with this long-standing community event and showcase our local bands who have many fans throughout Eastern Baltimore County. We are looking forward to providing an allstar lineup for this year’s Essex Day!”
A Jamaican-born singer/songwriter, Crawford moved to Baltimore in 1990 and quickly became a part of the music scene. After meeting band mate Kenny Wise at a karaoke bar, they officially formed Dean Crawford and the Dunn’s River Band in 1996 and started playing gigs in the Essex and Dundalk areas.
Crawford made a name for himself after winning the Songwriter of the Year in 2015 and Country Entertainer of the Year in 2016 at the Maryland Music Awards. He is most known for performing high-energy contemporary and traditional country music hits with back-up from his six-piece band.
With over 500 songs and 5 albums to his name, Crawford said his songwriting is most influenced by the work of Dolly
Parton, Garth Brooks and Conway Twitty.
“In a time when many country artists seem to blend in with a similar look and sound, Dean Crawford and the Dunn’s River Band stand out as distinctly different in these two most important
and defining categories,” states the band’s website.
Crawford released his fifth album earlier this year, which he called a “labor of love”. The lead single “Wrap Me Around in … Red, White and Blue” was inspired by current events and the division he saw among the community,
“With everything going on in the world and the tension in politics, everything is just toxic. At
the end of the day, we are all still Americans. We need to get over it and just come together for the good of the country. This might fall on deaf ears, but it’s important to me,” he told the Avenue News last year. “I just want to do music for people who love me and love country music.”
Crawford and Dunn’s have opened up for notable Nashville greats such as Neal McCoy, Buddy Jewel, Montgomery Gentry,
Jamie O’Neil, Bucky Covington. However, they are most known for their performances across the tri-state area, at festivals, special events, and clubs, playing over a dozen venues every month.
“A faithful and growing fan base is what keeps this group on the rise with sold out appearances and souvenir sales that eclipse any other group in the region,” states the band’s website.
The Dunn’s River Band is made up of Kenny Wise on fiddle, mandolin, acoustic guitar and vocals, Bobby Lawrence on drums, Billy Coley on the steel guitar, Bobby Murphy on lead guitar and vocals, Mike Clark on bass guitar, and Randy Denmyer and Brooke Lawrence on sound and operations.
For more information on Dean Crawford, visit www.simplydean. com.