Concrete Cowboys
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Concrete Cowboys

Portland, Oregon, United States | SELF

Portland, Oregon, United States | SELF
Band Country Americana


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Winner - 2010 & 2011 Portland Music Awards"

Winner - 2010 Portland Music Awards - Outstanding Achievement In Country Music - PMA

"Winner - 2008 Battle of the Bands"

Portland, OR - Ponderosa

"Winner - 2007 Battle of the Bands"

Molalla, OR - Molalla

"Kenny Chesney Big Star Competition"

2008 - 1st Runner Up

"Concrete Cowboys Aim For Big Time"

"It's great to be in a band that can play the music I hear in my head", states Travis Dow, songwriter and guitarist for the entertaining local "hard" country band The Concrete Cowboys.

Together little more than a year, this group has already put together an impressive string of successful shows at top-notch area venues and events. They just released a tightly produced CD featuring songs penned mainly by Dow. With seasoned vocalist Chad Kessner acting as pointman, this band of veteran performers is definitely aiming for the big time.

Concrete Cowboys' press kit leads with the line "to put it simply, this band is NUTS."

Crazy enough to enter and win a "Battle of the Bands" at their first ever show, they flew to Nashville a few months later. They peddled their demos to promoters along the famed "Music Row," then garnered airplay on KUPL, Portland's top country music radio station. "There ain't no rookies in this band," with a lineup of personnel whose ages range from 32 to 60.

Every position is manned by a competent journeyman player, each with their own interesting resume of accomplishments. The rhythm section is comprised of drummer Ed Mesa, who hails from the island of Guam; and bass player Darin Wirth, who grew up in Southern Oregon.

Lead guitarist Al Carness, cofounder of the esteemed Valley Arts guitar company and recently retired from Gibson, weaves his musical magic over the top of it all. Together, the group produces a tough but smooth sound that keeps the ears interested and puts boots on the dance floor.

Multi-instrumentalist Dow was born in Boston, but spent his "formative years" in the San Francisco Bay area, eventually earning a degree in Theater Arts from Humbolt State University. He worked with a variety of bands, performing live and recording several studio albums, traveling and generating airplay across the country. Later solo projects and collaborations brought experience and a honing of his songwriting skills. Dow moved to the Portland area in the fall of 2006 and met lead singer Kessner, who then helped pull together the rest of the Concrete Cowboy crew.

Fiddle player Jason Barlow sat in this night.

The band's first real booking was to enter and win a Battle of the Bands at what has become their home court, the legendary Ponderosa Lounge, 10350 N. Vancouver Way, at Jubitz Travel Center Way near the Jantzen Beach area.

The Concrete Cowboys have followed their debut at the Ponderosa with a string of gigs at places such as the Mt. Tabor Legacy, Spirit Mountain Casino, Bushwhackers in Tualatin and the vaunted Black Horse Saloon in Bend, as well as events including the Columbia County Fair and the Molalla Buckaroo.

Their first CD showcases the band at their finest, playing Dow's compositions with grit and determination. Kessner's reading of the ballad, and potential hit single Even Misery, hits the mark with just the right feel. The group has a sophomore effort in the works and will trim their schedule to just a few strategically chosen live shows in the coming months, including return dates at the Ponderosa Lounge on Saturday nights Oct. 25 and Nov. 22.

A major marketing campaign should follow, helping to raise the band's profile to a wider audience. Check their website, to join the gang for a ride into the sunset...
- Positively Entertainment

"Winner - 2008 Battle of the Bands"

Molalla Battle of the Bands
Molalla, OR - Molalla, OR

"Concrete Cowboys Create Tasty Originals"

On the stage this particular evening, the dancers were inspired by a great six-piece band by the name of Concrete Cowboys. As Chad Kessner, the lead singer, sucked down cough syrup and decongestant, he worried about the delivery of his vocals on Redneck Girl. He didn't have a thing to worry about! His vocals soared, and were delivered in unmistakable country fashion, reminiscent of Toby Keith. Behind him, Katie Keller on fiddle played sweet fills and solos, while Ed Mesa kept the dancers moving with his solid back beats.

Darin Wirth, Al Carness and Travis Dow rounded out the sound with bass, and double electric guitars that all played in solid, tight, obviously well-practiced unison.

The line up of music included some original tunes that were mainstream and tasty enough to be mistaken for covers you swear you've heard before. When they broke into Little Sister, both sides of the dance floors erupted and filled to capacity with dancers and audience together singing along.

This band is flawless when covering material and the three-part harmonies are crisp, tight and enjoyable.

-Katie Naylor - Positively Entertainment


"Next" - 2009
"Hard Country" - 2008

"Even Misery" - airplay on KUPL-FM, Portland
"Maybe I Will (Maybe I Won't)" - airplay on KUPL-FM, Portland
"Never Satisfied" - airplay on KUPL-FM, Portland

-Has opened shows for Emerson Drive, Justin Moore, Randy Houser, Rhett Akins, Andy Griggs, Lee Brice, Whiskey Falls, & more

-Cover stories and feature articles in several prominent publications

-Strong Internet Presence (Myspace, Facebook, etc.)

-Massive email list

Winner - 2010 & 2011 Portland Music Awards - Outstanding Achievement in Country Music

Winner - 2008 Battle of the Bands
Portland, OR

Winner - 2008 Battle of the Bands
Molalla, OR

Winner - 2007 Battle of the Bands
Molalla, OR

Kenny Chesney Big Star Competition
1st Runner Up



The Concrete Cowboys were formed in 2007 and have quickly become a Northwest favorite because of their high energy, thoroughly entertaining live shows. They have won countless battle of the bands competitions throughout the Northwest and are two time winners of the Portland Music Award's "Outstanding Achievement in Country Music" in 2010 & 2012. Although they have toured to places like Las Vegas, NV and Montana, The Concrete Cowboys still make time to support local charities by playing many benefits in the area. You also may have seen them opening for acts such as David Allan Coe, Confederate Railroad, Lee Brice, Randy Houser, Mark Wills, Lonestar, and Chris Young to name a few.The Concrete Cowboys are a one-of-a-kind band, and with their newest addition, National Champion Fiddler, Aarun Carter, you are guaranteed to have a great time!