Back to Graham Colton Band

By Corinne Casella

How many college kids with a guitar dream of getting a call from a major voice asking to promote them? Okay, stupid question. Here's a better one, how many actually have it happen to them? Graham Colton has the privilege of putting himself and his band mates on that short list. After garnering local and internet based support at Dallas' Southern Methodist University the group got a surprise call from Counting Crows' lead man Adam Duritz asking them to headline their upcoming tour. After that the books were put on a permanent hiatus and the open road became their classroom. They have been touring ever since and will be at the Borgata Hotel in Atlantic City on July 27.

Now that touring has become their lifestyle of choice, lyrics are penned anywhere and everywhere there's a free moment, from down time in the van, hotel rooms and sound checks. This style of songwriting makes for an honest look at life with truly relatable lyrics. The sound of Colton, drummer Jordan Elder, bassist Ryan Tallent, guitarist Aben Eubanks and pianist John Lancaster has been compared to several artists including Tom Petty and Oasis. Yet Colton himself describes their sound as "part of the mid-'90s revival of root-rock" Whatever you want to call it, it is rock and roll with a pop flair that dares you not to sing along.

Their as yet undeterred desire for touring has landed them on a 45-city jaunt supporting "American Idol" phenom Kelly Clarkson. Highlighting their live sets will be songs released off their new endeavor Drive from Universal Records.

Tickets cost $75 a pop, but it is Atlantic City and the music talents of Clarkson and the Graham Colton Band should ease any separation anxiety you feel when emptying your wallet. Show starts at 7:30 p.m. with tickets available through Ticketmaster.