Lee DeWyze, Corey Crowder at the Hotel Cafe

Corey Crowder, Lee DeWyze, The Hotel Café, September 23, 2011

The recent pairing of American Idol ninth season winner Lee DeWyze and independent singer / songwriter Corey Crowder has proven to be a winning combination. And so it was a nice surprise to see both artists performing sets at the extremely intimate Hotel Café in the wilds of Hollywood on a Friday night. DeWyze is certainly a household name due to his American Idol stature and deservedly so, judging by the energetic live performance he and his band delivered. Corey Crowder has also experienced a career full of ups and down – and he remains a vastly underrated performer whose fan base regard with a good deal of admiration. The two artists make for a perfect team, and it was a treat seeing both in this star-making town.

First up was Corey Crowder, who presented a short yet thoroughly impressive opening set. Although the crowd was clearly there to see Mr. DeWyze, they definitely cheered and clapped to Corey’s outstanding songs. There is little doubt he’s made a whole set of new fans since touring with the famed American Idol winner. Kicking off the acoustic performance with a rousing original entitled Burnin’ Love, Corey quickly demonstrated what a tremendous talent he is. Joining in on mandolin was Kirk Sauers, who contributed a magic touch, weaving intricately though the material. Look How Far We’ve Come and the amazing Southern Way from Crowder’s underrated Gold & The Sand CD were played, their acoustic renditions absolutely breathtaking! People Worth Talking About was another highlight, an inspiring tune Corey wrote about his fire fighter brother. There were also two covers included that had the audience singing along, which were CCR’s Who Will Stop The Rain and Lean On Me by Bill Withers. Now with a writing contract from Universal Records, Corey Crowder may finally be crashing into the big time at last! A great combination of fun and heartfelt tunes!

The room was jammed packed when Lee DeWyze took to the stage. And if you thought that only teen girls screamed at the artists they love and adore, you’ll definitely be in for a second take when seeing the reaction from DeWyze’s 20-something plus fans. The response was not without merit, as Lee DeWyze really placed his heart and soul into such impassioned tunes as Pretty Eyes and Live It Up. An impressive cover of the Iron and Wine classic Naked As We Come was also unleashed, with DeWyze rendering the song all his own. A Song About Love was another moving number that really grabbed the emotions of the audience. DeWyze and his guitar were accompanied by a pianist and a super resourceful percussionist – the trio making for a tremendously enjoyable musical experience. The Hotel Café is always booking the best of shows and they may now add the bill of DeWyze and Crowder into one of their many memorable events. After the meet and greets, it was off into the rowdy mayhem and chaos of a weekend night in Hollywood!

(Review and Photos by Kenneth Morton)

Corey Crowder on Facebook
Lee DeWyze on Facebook

5 Comments
  1. Kj 7 years ago

    You nailed lee in this review, boy has more talent and heart than given credit for! I adore him.. Seen him live 5 times and is not nearly enough..can’t wait to see him live again.. Honestly nothing like it!

  2. Heather 7 years ago

    Thanks for this review of Lee and Corey! It is SO refreshing to read a review about Lee’s talent and not a review about another critic jumping on the “bash Season 9 train”….I was lucky to see both of these amazing artists at Musica in June. All I can say is WOW and that is the kind of music I pray will be on the radio someday. Music sung with passion 🙂

  3. Angela 7 years ago

    Thank you for the spot-on review of Lee and Corey! Wonderful performers. Seeing Lee live is such an experience. He sings from his heart and soul and really connects with the audience. If he does a show near you, don’t miss it. Check out this video of Lee singing a new song “If You Want” at the Saturday night show! Amazing @redbeanieblog: Video: @LeeDeWyze “TEARS IT UP”….. DAY TWO AT THE HOTEL CAFE IN LA!! “You Can Stay If You Want”… tumblr.com/x2w4wlqpc5

  4. Diana 7 years ago

    Love Lee but his new songs don’t seem that inspired to me. Just saw a video of him singing If You Want to Stay and he definitely sings with passion, but it seems to follow the same pattern as some of his other new stuff – the same few lyrics repeated over and over and then a bunch of whoahhh oooohhh oh’s. Plus, he had Stay, then Stay Here and now If You Want to Stay. I think he needs some new inspiration! I miss his Annabelle days.

  5. dewyzefan6 7 years ago

    Thanks for the great review. It’s so nice to see a critic with great taste. Lee DeWyze is amazing & brings something very refreshing to the music industry. As soon as I saw him perform on Idol season 9 he quickly became my fav. artist EVER. He has so much talent; so much heart; along with a TON of passion & soul. He sings his heart out & he does it so well. Lee is phenomenal live. His true essence comes out when he’s on stage & he truLEE belongs there. You can’t describe the feeling in the room when he’s up there giving it his all & he’s just so naturally talented. He’s also one of the nicest guys you ever wanna meet. He always makes time for his fans which alot of artists don’t do.

    Everyone needs experience a Lee show. I promise he won’t disappoint & I hope everyone buys his albums too: Live It Up; So I’m Told & Slumberland. I’m SO proud to be a HUGE beLEEver.

    Corey Crowder is also really good & has an adorable boyish charm about him. They do really compliment each other’s performances. GREAT shows!

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