Fish On at Bowies, Nashville Concert Review


Cody Wagner, Entertainment Writer

Fish On Concert Review

Cody Wagner, Entertainment Writer

[email protected] or [email protected]

Written: 4-9-21


The analysis of 6 friends from Tennessee whose performance integrated rock and roll with a country style and attitude. 

Over spring break I went to Nashville, TN, one of the country’s biggest music centered cities. My intentions consisted of visiting with family who reside in the area as well as investigating Middle Tennessee State University as a possible school to transfer to next fall. Throughout my trip I was able to tour Nashville experiencing the city’s musical association as well as its impact on newly forming musicians who wish to strive for excellence. I was overwhelmed with the extensive affiliation with music that fascinates me every time I visit. The inclination and appreciation for music throughout the area captured my attention, furthering my interest to reside in the state. 


 All around the city of Nashville you see bars and restaurants with musicians playing  24/7. Whether it’s in a prestigious bar full of musically inclined tourists or street musicians aiming to earn some extra cash, music is expressed almost everywhere you go. Day or night, everywhere I looked there were extensive lines for music venues as people desired to hear the innovative sounds musicians had to offer while patrons could also indulge in as much alcohol as they wanted to ease their way into musical investment and relaxation. From my visit, I was able to experience this array of musical interest in the form of a pleasurable and leisurely night I spent with my brother-in-law. We decided to visit a newly crafted music venue known only as “Bowies” that stretched from the broadway strip where much of the musical action occurs.


 The venue had just opened in January, and much of its atmosphere centered around the world of rock music. Neon lights of band logos such as The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin were everywhere as well as references to the name of David Bowie in the form of  red lightning bolt, an iconic symbol throughout Bowie’s early Aladdin Sane period. There were also large balloons with two figures that looked to symbolize one of Bowie’s accomplishments in film through his role in the 1986 film “Labyrinth.” Other than those two, I honestly was surprised at the amount of Bowie memorabilia that wasn’t seen. Album covers, pictures, or even concert posters of Bowie would greatly serve in improving the correlation with the artist, but none of that was found.


The crowd was small as we arrived early into the night when Nashville’s musical excitement was just beginning to form. Tables were grouped into sections and spread out, but as for wearing masks, the mandate was lenient, and many of the patrons decided to go maskless. The band I witnessed that night surprised me to the greatest degree. I initially saw six men enter the stage with cowboy hats, shiny leather boots and other various aspects of country apparel. As soon as I noticed this style of clothing I instantly thought that this band would be centered directly around the country influence seen so prevalently in the Nashville area. Soon as the band played, there was this sound of raw ferocity I had only seen from rock bands. It instantly shot into my ears, not to mention our table was right next to one of the main speakers where the sound was amplified to an even greater degree. This band, known as Fish On, was able to bring loud and hard music into a town I thought only centered on the genre of American Country music.


Fish On, whose name recently changed to Loose Lips, consisted of founding vocalist and harmonica player Benny Carl, with guitarist Myles Baker, saxophonist Ed Myer, guitarist Ryan “Slim” Cain, bassist Robbie Crede and drummer Todd Jewel. The name Fish On was invented by accident when Carl was out fishing and heard news of a musical opportunity that would ignite his career as a musician. When Carl heard the news and was given the opportunity to play at a venue, he needed to think of a band name on the spot, and as this was happening he instantly hooked into a fish. Thus the name “Fish On” was born. The band had gone through many lineup changes since their formation, but it solidified into the current members as their musical influence continued to rise. Since that time the band continues to play clubs and bars in the Nashville area influencing their sound and performance trying to get their names out there to the best of their ability. These six friends who love nothing more than hunting, fishing, and hanging out, are able to express their creativity onstage while implementing the love and bond they have for each other both on and off stage. Their scenario feels like a story about the rise of coming rock stars who simply want to make it in the music world. The band wants to try and gain as much momentum as possible while creating a fanbase whose loyalty can remain constant further creating a network of individuals who can provide a gateway into musical success. The idea though remains the same and that is simply to create and express music for all to hear and admire. Through their esatic and fulfilling performance I do believe that they can create something unique and vital to the world of music. 


I was able to get in contact with Crede. He said that through much of the pandemic the band was able to practice and even worked on original music to be recorded in the near future. This statement shows the commitment and passion these men have for music as they search to find a meaningful and successful path in the growing world of the music industry. The will to get their name out and record new material shows that this band is driven to achieving triumph in the music industry. They wish to progress their music into a different state and be known as artists with their own sound formulating the bands dynamic entirely. Their recent name change to loose lips is an example of the progression they wish to strive for as they leave their old name and enter into a new one, dawning the end of an old chapter, and the beginning of a new one. 


Fish On’s performance was composed of the loud, exciting, and intense style that rock and roll has offered the world for generations. They were able to integrate the sound of pure rock and roll with a country style that gave meaning to their name and image. They covered songs from Eric Clapton’s “Cocaine” to The Rolling Stones’ “Miss You” to The Black Crowes’ “Hard to Handle” while expressing the rebellious attitude found in the foundation of rock music. I was surprised with every song they played because much of their material consisted of cover songs created by infamous names in rock that invited an emotion of nostalgia. The band members’ headbanged, danced and interacted with the audience while feeling the sound of this music both emotionally and spiritually. Crede’s mannerisms, along with his thrusting movement into his ass guitar, portrayed the sexualized aura that rock has centered around – intense, unrelenting attitude.


There was also a moment when Carl raised his shot glass and made a toast towards the audience portraying the party-like antics that the rock scene is heavily known for. Carl wanted the audience to be invested in what Fish On had to offer while also sending the message of having a good time and partying it up with fellow fans of rock music. His performance as a frontman was beyond comprehension. His personality portrayed the craziness and eccentric attitude found in many of rock’s most inventive and innovative frontmen. Carl’s innovations as a frontman wasn’t the only highlight of that night as the other members of the band helped to create the atmosphere and intention needed for Carl’s personality. The attitude Carl displayed matched perfectly with the overall feel and mood of every song while inviting audience members to gather around and be a part of the experience. Each song was louder and energetic than the next creating a setting that disregarded the standard of simply sitting at one’s table and watching the band. They wanted people to be up and close to the action and this was accomplished as their set continued on into the night as people happily, some even drunkenly were into the bands creative outlook and musical interpretation . 


Through the band’s performance of “Miss You” Carl’s personality instantly matched that of Rolling Stones frontman, Mick Jagger, as his facial expression along with intricate dance moves signified Jagger’s style and attentiveness. Baker and Slim’s guitar work featured solos and riffs with heavy, distorted characteristics that incited energy and excitement. Crede’s basslines created an even flow of rhythm that perfectly correlated with the structure of the intense sound that was being projected. Myer’s use of the saxophone implemented the historical sounds of jazz and added a diversification of sound and style as the band used this element as a force of vibrant intricacy rather than soothing conformity. Jewel’s use of drums provided an even flow of timing with the starting and ending points of each song allowing the band to stay functional as a whole unit of musical expertise rather than individual conceitedness. 


 All these elements served in the creation of a jaw-dropping, enthralling performance that displayed the hardcore nature and emotion of rock and roll. As the band rolled on into their lively performance, so did the interaction with the crowd. As their sound echoed from the venue’s outside speaker through Nashville, more and more people entered the venue. There was even a moment where one of the audience members portrayed his own version of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man” on stage and jammed out with the band. The guy was a friend of the band who openly accepted the invitation to come onto the stage and be a part of the band. This is the kind of audience investment we need to see with more bands as simple minded people like you and me can be a part of the real experience onstage generating an even greater connection with the music and the one’s playing it. It was amazing to see how an ordinary individual coils have such a talented gift and the opportunity to share that gift onstage is in my opinion one of the greatest feelings one can’t even comprehend even if its for a locally centered artist such as Fish On. This guys performance presented an unique and diverse way to interact with audiences and to allow the members to take control by relaying their love and passion for music creating a feeling as though you are a part of something and being integrated into the music even further. 


 Never before had I heard such an extensive and emotionally driven performance of that song by an everyday individual whose vocal performance was spellbinding and outright beautiful. It’s amazing to see the talent fellow fans can offer using their own musical talent in a city full of possibility and opportunity making Nashville a truly accepting and diverse area allowing one’s inner musical ability to shine onstage.


“Fish On’s” performance placed me into a whole other world of musical investment as I witnessed the combination of two genres of music that acted as a powerful force of euphoria and fascination. The band’s unique perspective of the music they were playing was exposed with each and every lyric, riff, note and harmony, resulting in an innovative and inventive sound that I find to be destined for greatness. 

Pictures and captures of the concert can be found at the links below: