Erik Dylan
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Erik Dylan

Nashville, TN | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Nashville, TN | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Solo Country Americana


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"Album Review: Erik Dylan - Heart of a Flatland Boy"

If you're like me, one of the first things you'll notice about Erik Dylan is his vocal similarity to 1990's Steve Earle. It's undeniable. There's also some Chris Knight, some Guy Clark, and some John Mellencamp in there.

Don't let that dissuade you though; this guy's no cheap imitation, and he's got "it." "It," as in songwriting chops, a singular point of view, and an indefinable gravity. He's even got a blessing of sorts from the Earle family by way of Steve's niece providing backing vocals on lead single "Pink Flamingos."

Dylan's written songs for or with Nashville acts like Thompson Square, Eric Paslay, and Kip Moore, but his own music hardly fits the mold for radio airplay. Not to say radio isn't moving his direction, but Dylan's sound would still be considered edgy by Top 40 standards. It's not squarely in the realm of Americana either - there's a clear commercial bent to the sound - he resides somewhere in the middle ground.

And the writing… the writing is pure heartland. Downtrodden blue collar souls, broken hearts, and small town dreamers populate his songs with a depth that's detailed enough to carry a songwriters' night, but a universal appeal to grab more commercially-oriented souls.

All that said and I haven't even mentioned the album yet. Heart of a Flatland Boy is out Friday, and if the first four paragraphs perked your ears, you need to click play or download on this record.

The aforementioned "Pink Flamingos" is "Feel Alright" (Earle) meets "Goodbye Earl" (Dixie Chicks) and if that ain't the formula for a killer tune, I don't know what is. It's a backroads justice tune with a little dark humor and a lot of devil-may-care attitude.

"Astronaut" is a dreamer's anthem. It's a little fanciful and a lot of fun. A working man dreams of getting out, whether by rocket ship or lottery windfall, but he's stuck in a map dot town with a "Copenhagen habit and a GED." And that line there is the hook that will stick in your head long after the album is over, whether you want it to or not.

The album's most moving song is "Fishing Alone." It's a recounting of regrets after losing a close family member that touches the heart and sets the most important things in life in proper order. Give it a listen and then go call your dad.

Heart of a Flatland Boy is a bold debut, full of stories and emotions. It deals less in platitudes than it does in reality, more in grit than gloss, but there's still more than enough catchiness to appeal to even the most passive listener. Dylan is a promising talent who's landed with an album that already surpasses many artists' potentials. It's well worth your time.

RIYL: Steve Earle, Chris Knight, John Mellencamp, Reckless Kelly. - Farce the Music

"Erik Dylan Celebrates Release of "Heart of a Flatland Boy" at The Crying Wolf"

On Monday night (10/17), singer and songwriter Erik Dylan performed at The Crying Wolf in east Nashville to celebrate the release of his latest album Heart of a Flatland Boy.

For the last few years, Dylan has made his mark in Nashville by performing at writers’ nights and having songs cut by artists like Kip Moore and Eric Paslay. “I pitch almost everything I write,” Dylan said. “I always celebrate every cut, but I’ll record those songs later on other records too. Plus, I don’t have to play a cover song in a set if someone already cut one of my songs!”

Prior to his performance, friends, family, and fans of Dylan filed into The Crying Wolf, and their excitement could be felt throughout the intimate venue. Dylan opened the show with the title track, “Flatland Boy,” and got the audience in the groove with his rock-influenced music.

About halfway through the night, Dylan made his way into some of his slower songs, starting with “Girl That Got Away” before moving into one of Dylan’s favorite songs, “Fishing Alone.” “Fishing Alone hits me every time,” Dylan said. “I got goosebumps tonight while I was playing it.”

Dylan’s live performance reflected how talented of an artist he is, with his live songs sounding just as good as their recorded counterparts. His talent did not go unnoticed by the audience, as individuals could be seen making their way to the back of the venue to pick up copies of the CD throughout the show.

Dylan rounded out his act with some of his most upbeat songs, commenting “let’s get back to rock n roll” before moving into the songs. As he ended the show with his song “Astronaut,” the crowd was rocking right along with him. The song, which Dylan says was inspired by a jackhammer running outside of his publisher’s office, holds a punk influence within it, and that is a theme that is seen throughout the album

“A lot of this stuff is inspired by Texas songwriting,” Dylan said. “There’s also a lot of stuff inspired by Seattle alternative and Steve Albini and The Ramones, I love bands like that too. When you make an independent record, you have a lot more control as an artist, but it’s more expensive for you personally…But I think it was worth it for me truly to see the ten songs I wanted to record and do exactly that without a whole lot of outside input.”

Heart of a Flatland Boy is for sale now, and can be purchased here. For more information on Erik Dylan, visit his website here. - Nashville Country Club


Still working on that hot first release.



Originally from rural Muscotah, Kansas, Erik Dylan grabbed his guitar and left his life as a fourth generation farmer to move to Nashville, Tennessee. After performing at many writers' nights in the city, Dylan was soon discovered by country superstar Kip Moore in 2011, who quickly set Dylan's career in motion by introducing him to award-winning songwriter Brett James, leading to a publishing deal with Warner Chappell. Since then, Dylan has had cuts by many country music mainstays including Eric Paslay, Kip Moore, Eli Young Band, and Justin Moore. The rising hitmaker has also shared the stage with some of the biggest names in music, such as Lynyrd Skynyrd and Reckless Kelly. Dylan released his latest album Heart of a Flatland Boy in October of 2016.

Band Members