“I’ve been livin’ out of a bag since I was about 18,” Sturgill Simpson told Seattle radio station KEXP in an interview last year after being asked if he enjoyed the road. Being the soothsaying country sage that he is, he must have thought to himself, “That’s a song right there.”
The “Long White Line” has led the rugged Kentucky native Simpson through near-constant touring, apparently before and certainly since his 2014 album “Metamodern Sounds in Country Music” made him the newest, truest hope for hardcore country lovers, many of whom are drawn to him out of nostalgia for the cosmic, outlaw and bluegrass influences he wears bare.
Fresh off a European run and subsequent stretch opening for hero-turned-admirer Merle Haggard – who recently described Simpson to Billboard as “about the only one that I can tell you I’m excited about … he’s got something going energy-wise that I haven’t seen in a long time” – Simpson’s “Living the Dream” tour pulls into Town Ballroom on Sunday. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25-30 at www.townballroom.com.
– Seamus Gallivan