SEBRING — Bartow’s Eli Mosley brought his high energy show to The Circle Theater Fri. night, May 4. Performing before a near capacity crowd, Mosley kept the audience engaged with his friendly onstage banter, humor and country charm.
The singer announced from the stage that he “wanted to meet everybody in here.” During intermission of the two-hour show, Mosley spent the entire break talking to fans, taking pictures, shaking hands and signing autographs.
Aside from a brief moment of technical difficulty during the opening song, the show went off without a hitch. Immediately apparent was the level of professionalism and showmanship on the stage. The former Marine and crew looked relaxed and happy under the lights as Mosley moved smoothly back and forth across the stage. Clearly much time and thought had gone into giving the audience a quality show and a memorial evening out. An all the more impressive feat considering Mosley’s excellent band consists of part time musicians with day jobs.
Those musicians are, Anna Lee, rhythm guitar and background vocals, Kheagun Fleckenstein on lead guitar, David Cunningham, bass guitar and perpetual motion, Daniel Benefield, drums and Justin Walden on fiddle.
The concert, at times, brought to mind a Garth Brooks style show. The Brooks standard “Friends In Low Places” was even performed with Mosley going out into the audience and up to the balcony, singing most of the song from the midst of the crowd.
Tracy Byrd, the artist Mosley credits as being “the reason I got into this,” was represented by the performance of his song, “Watermelon Crawl.” Another Mosley hero, George Strait, saw three songs covered. Those were, “Check Yes Or No, “Round About Way,” and “Amarillo By Morning.”
The show was not comprised of covers only. One high point was Mosley’s solo performance of his own, “With You.” “Just Need To Know” was a Sebring preview of new Mosley music yet to be released. If the song itself is indicative of the upcoming third release, it will be one you’ll not want to miss.
The band played most of the current album, “Come Along With Me,” including standouts “Stay,” the title song, and “American Men.” The latter is a tribute to Mosley’s Grandfather who served in WWII, and the military legacy he started within the family. Mosley’s father, brother and himself have all severed this country in military uniform.
Mosley and Lee treated the crowd to a rousing rendition of the Johnny Cash/June Carter classic, “Going To Jackson” that got hands clapping and heads bobbing.
Other songs of note were two covers by Brooks & Dunn, “Cowgirls Don’t Cry” and “Boot Scootin’ Boogie,” and Merle Haggard’s “Mama Tried.
The Polk County cowboy saved one of his best for one of his last. Mosley’s current single, the outstanding “St. Augustine” would be one of those songs Mosley fans would come to hear. It is Mosley’s most successful song to date and one of his best.
The show was opened with two solos songs each by Lee and Walden.
At the conclusion of the nights’ performance, the audience showed their appreciation with a resounding standing ovation. The Mosley gang endeared themselves to the crowd this night. A return engagement would be appreciated by many.
For more on Mosley visit www.elimosley.com or www.facebook.com/elimosleymusic.
More on Circle Theatre can be found at www.facebook.com/bestvenueintown.