Show Reviews



Undiscovered Nashville’s ‘Tunes + Tequila’

Tuesday August 22, 2023

@ The Clubhouse at Sonny’s in Nashville, TN

(Review By: Jeffrey Kurtis)

New name…same great emerging talent!

With their move to Tuesday nights at the beginning of the month, a shift for Undiscovered Nashville and their weekly songwriter round had arrived.

Where their quaint space inside The Clubhouse at Sonny's transformed into a rowdy atmosphere during their Saturday night residency this summer, the move to Tuesday’s has not only seen a return to a cozy listening room aura, but its also seen Undiscovered Nashville’s weekly show experience a name change that took them from their longstanding 'Pre-Famous’ to ‘Tunes + Tequila’; a nod to the bars Tuesday night drink specials.

But although the moniker has changed, the talent that Tony is bringing to this stage has seemingly gotten even stronger.

Stephanie Ryann, Hailey Dawn, Madeline Consoer, Hannah Noel, and Zac Hart have all held their own over the past month, while this incredible night of music had already featured Nicole Croteau, Belles, and Carlyle Griffin ahead of featured act Dakota Danielle.

Danielle, who has spent the past month on tour, immediately injected the venue with her insatiable drawl and 90’s branded country style, pumping her voice through the nostalgic lyrics of “One Church 3 Bar Town” while taking the crowd on a Polaroid photo journey through her Midwest hometown, crisply describing it as the type of place that’s full of hard working people who make ends meet and know how to relax and throw one back, but always still Praise the Lord on Sunday’s.

Joined on stage by recent tourmate and frequent co-writer, Leah Crose, for what was described as the theme song of their tour, “Midwest,” they each added individuality on their respective verses, before blending into one another through the chorus to elevate the punch of the autobiographical lyrics that highlighted who they are, where they come from, and just how deep their Midwest roots run. 

“I had a journal of the feelings that I couldn’t say out loud,” Dakota shared as she praised her co-writer, Jessilynn Kidd, who helped her craft them into “One Day Closer to You,” an incredibly personal song which she dedicated to her mom who unexpectedly passed away, tugging on heartstrings while bringing the crowd to an absolute hush as she poetically weaved us through her understandable struggles and complicated emotions to eventually finding peace in the acceptance of this not being a goodbye, but always being just another moment closer to reuniting.

“I call this my sassy's about being independent!” Dakota said with an excited kick to her voice. “If there's one thing that I am, it's very independent….and I'm also very stubborn," she said with a slyness as she lifted the pace, pushing her voice into its intriguingly raw edges to add a gritty snarl to "Without Being Lonely,” fully embracing comfort in being alone while hitting an addictive Wynonna like growl into the memorable hook, “What makes you think I can't be alone without being lonely?”

“This was the second single I released. I wasn't living in Nashville at time, and I was looking for ways to promote the song, and so I ended up traveling to schools and talking to kids about empowerment and anti-bullying,” she humbly shared before playing “Forever,” during which she metaphorically took on the big sister role of someone who’s been through the growing pains of high school, offering an understanding shoulder for generation next to lean on as she let them know that they’re not alone, but encouragingly, that it will also all pass and they’ll be okay.  

Sliding into the float on the breeze flare on “Soaking Up the Sunshine,” the tempo driven melody allowed Dakota to accent the vibe through the pop of power in her voice as she connected the ultra-catchy chorus with the 9-to-5ers who are tired of the daily grind and are daydreaming of a day drinking escape to the lake.

Bookending with the small-town anthem "Backroads," placed an exclamation point on her half hour set as Dakota poured all her signatures into a three-minute, up-tempo blast that kept everyone's toes slapping the floors in perfect rhythm while highlighting her incredible vocals to leave a lasting impression on the crowd as the final notes of the night were strummed, expertly shining a perfect spotlight on her entire career by taking us from 2019 to the present with her song selection.

1) One Church 3 Bar Town
2) Midwest
3) One Day Closer to You
4) Without Being Lonely
5) Forever
6) Soaking Up the Sunshine
7) Backroads



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