Kane Brown went in the right direction
If things had gone just a little differently for rising country star Kane Brown, he could be a big-time pop-R&B singer right now. Growing up in rural Georgia and Tennessee, Brown sang in his school choir and spent his time listening to both R&B and country music. One of his high school classmates, Lauren Alaina, went on to place second in the 10th season of American Idol, and Brown was set to follow in her footsteps as a TV singing-contest performer on The X Factor until that show’s producers wanted to place him in a boy band with other contestants.
So instead of becoming a member of the next version of One Direction, Brown struck out on his own, first posting covers of popular songs on YouTube and then recording an independent six-song EP in Nashville in 2014. That EP spawned Brown’s first country hit, “Don’t Go City On Me,” and since then he’s scored major airplay on country radio with singles including “Used to Love You Sober,” “Heaven” and “What Ifs,” a duet with Alaina, who’s become a country star in her own right. Going his own way has allowed Brown to end up right where he needs to be.
Mandalay Bay Beach, 9 p.m. July 22, $39 plus tax and fee. 800.745.3000 Ticketmaster