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Belleville welcomes country music star Corb Lund to the Empire

-1201241150By Morgan Davy [1]

BELLEVILLE – A spring thaw is coming to Belleville in more ways than one.

Country singer Corb Lund [2] is bringing warmth to the Empire Theatre [3]on Thursday night as part of his Spring Thaw tour [4].

Lund kicked off the tour Wednesday night in Barrie. He says he does not put much planning into his live shows.

“We’re at the point where we have seven records and we can play most of the stuff, so we don’t really use a set list. I just kind of make it up as I go every night. It works well because if we’re playing a theatre we’re going to play a different set than if we’re playing a honky tonk. The mood is dictated by the setting. Sometimes you think it’s going to go one way but the audience is feeling something else. I just sort of go with it.”

Lund, most famous for his 2005 hit “Truck Got Stuck”, says shows aren’t the only place where he flies by the seat of his pants. The Alberta-born cowboy admits he doesn’t have much of a process when turning out new music. He works best in the moment.

“I’ve built an audience that allows me to write about whatever I want. Some of the guys I know that play that straight ahead country music are really limited in what they can write about. I can pretty much do whatever I want. It’s kind of awesome.”

Lund goes on to say, “my approach has always been to just write about what ever I’m feeling in my head. A lot of my songs have personal ancestral history in them or western Canadian prairie culture. Of course I don’t always write about that. Sometimes they’re about motorcycles or whiskey or card games.”

Playing shows in a mixture of large cities and small rural towns has brought his music to people from all walks of life. Something Lund says he takes pride in.

“One of the things I’m most proud of about our band is that we have a really diverse audience. We have people listening to us that are straight up country fans and people that listen to us that are more songwriter, folk fest fans. We even have some aging indie rock people listening. It’s a really cool mixture of people. It gives me a little bit of hope that music can actually do what it’s supposed to and break down barriers between people.”

Lund often reaches out to his audience through social media. He promotes shows on Twitter and has a video blog on Youtube. On this tour he is giving his fans an opportunity to reach back.

“We’re taking requests ahead of time on twitter and the website. I try to take a few at the show, too. We’ll play the obvious ones but if there’s anything people want to hear that might be a little more obscure, just let me know.”

Lund hits the stage at 8 p.m., then heads to Montreal [5]on April 11.