Right now the sky is the limit for Due West and that is great news for the city of Price. With two of the band's three members currently enjoying their honeymoon there is a good chance that their April 5 acoustic show at the Price Civic Auditorium will be epic. Due West is in town for one night only to help Price citizens kick off their year long 100th birthday celebration and with a new song climbing the charts on CMT locals all over Carbon County can't wait to get the show started.
"A fan can't say enough about these guys,"said Stan Bowman, a longtime fan who will be traveling across Utah with his family to see Due West in Price. "My whole family first saw these guys perform two and a half years ago and fell instantly in love with their music. One of the main reasons we love these guys so much is their willingness to spend time after their shows to talk with fans. They made my family part of their family and because of them we have met many other great people."
A close relationship with their fans, is a big part of Due West's persona, making them an instant success with just about everyone they play for. An easy going nature is not only a big hit with fans but it would play a large part in the way these three lifelong musicians would come together.
A easygoing chance encounter changed the direction of the lives of Matt Lopez, Brad Hull and Tim Gates the trio who calls themselves Due West. According to the band's bio, the night that fate brought them together started out like many others.
"We were all at a party,"recalled Lopez. "Dan Truman of Diamond Rio was having a house party at his sister's house, and he had invited a bunch of people that he knew were in the music business and people who were trying to break into it. So we all happened to be at that party that night. Everybody was just sitting around playing guitar, and we started doing some Restless Heart, Shenandoah, and Diamond Rio tunes. Brad and I jumped right in there on the harmonies."
According to Gates, the group played their first shows in Nashville without a name, attempting to harness the magic they had found on their first encounter. After a few shows, the group decided to make a run of it, they settled on naming their band after a street right there in country music city becoming Due West.
The band came together immediately and would see immediate and ongoing success with their debut album hitting fans all across the United States. Lead Vocalist Gates called into the Sun Advocate this week to talk about the band's upcoming show in Price and their recent success.
"Right now, its kind of cool because Brad just got married two weeks ago, Matt got married this past week, so they are both kind of on their honeymoons,"laughed Gates, calling in after a late morning IHOP breakfast. "I'm chillin writing songs and hanging out with my family and things couldn't be better. We get back together next week for the American Country Music Awards and then it's busy, busy, busy for the rest of the year."
While at the ACM's the group will be participating in a turkey shoot with Blake Shelton just one of their new friends on the road.
The group's new label Black River entertainment is currently putting everything they have behind the band, working to get their infectious harmonies out to the public.
"We are kind of living that dream right now,"said Gates. "It's so exciting have the ability to do something with our music."
Due West was approached following the Richfield Fair last year by many Utah natives looking to book the group for a show, representatives from Price just happened to be part of that crowd.
"We are very excited for the acoustic show in Price,"explained Gates. "I have played in that area before and there are really some great fans out there.
Gates has a great deal of experience in Carbon County, his previous band, Southbound, played the Wellington's Cowboy Club several times in the past.
"I loved that place, we used to come down for the weekends and stay in an apartment across the street from the venue. That place was great,"laughed the Due West vocalist.
While several local individuals worked hard to bring this show to Price, former resident Nancy Basford had an in with Due West and was able to get them headed toward Carbon County. She explained her love for the band recently and the reasons behind convincing them to come into Price.
"I wanted to introduce Due West to Price for a couple years for two reasons,"she said. "The first being, I know the community loves music and I know they will appreciate the sound of this band, their lyrics and the passion the three of them have for small towns, since they are all three from small towns in the west. The second, I have been asked many times, why I would want to work on a concert in a community which I no longer live in, my answer is simple, I value the experiences and memories of growing up in Price, I feel strong desires to continue my associations with my hometown, sometimes we move away, but we don't want to forget our roots. What better way, than support a local charity, with a band with two hits in the country top 20 and a small town group of guys that made their dreams come true."
The charity Basford alluded to in her comments happens to be the Carbon County Green Team who jumped on the opportunity to host the band and help Price kick off their centennial celebration. And with the help of the Sun Advocate and KUSA and KASL the Green Team will be doing just that.
"We love being a part of this community,"said Sun Advocate Advertising Director Jenni Fasselin. "And when Nancy said she could bring in this great group we jumped on the chance. We have chronicled this area for over its entire existence and we want to be there for every second of their centennial celebration."
While the group's sound is eclectic, they play a little something for everybody, even boasting hip-hop influence, something that is rare in country music. Don't miss your chance to kick off the biggest party Price has seen in 100 years, that's April 5 at the Price Civic Auditorium. Stop by the Sun Advocate office for your tickets today.