published Friday, March 23rd, 2012

Jake Owen's rising star shines on Track 29 Saturday

IF YOU GO

What: Jake Owen in concert.

When: 9 p.m. Saturday.

Where: Track 29, 1400 Market St.

Admission: Sold out.

Phone: 521-2929.

Venue website: www.track29.co.

It's been 24 weeks since Jake Owen's last single hit the charts, and "Alone With You" is still No. 2. It's only a matter of time before his name breaks Billboard's Top 200 again.

Growing up, Owen was an avid golfer, advancing onto the ranks of the collegiate team at Florida State University until an injury snuffed out any hope of a professional career. To fill the void, he began teaching himself to play guitar and write songs inspired by artists such as Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard.

"This scar that I have on my shoulder reminds me about the one dark time in my life," Owen said, in a bio on his website. "It took that accident to make me realize that I wasn't doing what I was supposed to be doing. What I was supposed to be doing was something that fulfilled me. Music."

With his smooth baritone, Owen has crooned songs about fun romps and broken hearts, eventually graduating from supporting artists such as Brad Paisley and Kenny Chesney to standing in the spotlight on his own. Saturday, he'll headline a show at Track 29.

Venue manager Adam Kinsey said ticket sales for the show have increased rapidly in the last three or four weeks. Originally, the show was set for a crowd capacity of 1,000. Based on the level of interest, however, that has been increased twice, first to 1,500, which sold out, and finally to 1,700, which also sold out earlier this week.

"Jake Owen is one of those young country acts who is just skyrocketing," he said. "It should be a young crowd with a lot of energy."

Owen's career in music got kicked off in 2005, when he moved to Nashville. Rather than founder in the morass that traps so many amateur songwriters, he hit the ground running.

In less than a year, he landed a recording contract with RCA Records. By the end of 2006, he cracked the Billboard charts twice with "Yee Haw" and "Startin' With Me," the first of eight career singles.

His latest album, "Barefoot Blue Jean Night," last year scraped its way to the No. 1 and No. 6 spots on Billboard's Country Albums and Top 200 charts. He also was nominated at the 2011 American Country Awards as Breakthrough Artist of the Year.

about Casey Phillips...

Casey Phillips has worked as a features reporter in the Life department since May 2007. He writes about entertainment, consumer technology, animals and news of the weird. Casey hails from Knoxville and earned a bachelor of science degree in journalism and a bachelor of arts in German from Middle Tennessee State University, where he worked as the features editor for the student newspaper, Sidelines. Casey's writing has earned numerous accolades, including first and second place ...

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