It’s been a busy summer for Dierks Bentley and Molly Tuttle, as the former crisscrosses the country on his Gravel & Gold tour and the latter has released her critically-acclaimed album, City of Gold, with her band Golden Highway. With Bentley’s well-known love of bluegrass – he’s been a regular at the World Famous Station Inn in Nashville for decades and his 2010 bluegrass album, Up on the Ridge, featured many of our favorite grassers – and the golden similarities between Tuttle’s and Bentley’s brands at the moment, this match-up feels more than apropos.
“We were so lucky to have Molly and her awesome band be part of several shows on our summer tour,” Bentley says. “We had shared the stage before at the Station Inn, so taking the show on the road seemed like the next logical step! Not only do they put on a killer show, but they are super fun to hang with off stage as well.”
The love, appreciation, and admiration Bentley and his band have for bluegrass is nearly unmatched in country and it’s obvious that admiration – for Tuttle & Golden Highway, too – is mutual. “We introduced [Golden Highway] to pickleball and cold plunges,” Bentley continues, “and of course to our fans every night, some of who had never listened to bluegrass music. For Molly Tuttle to be those fans’ first experience with bluegrass was really an honor for me. We made some new bluegrass fans for life!”
For their part, Tuttle and band have spent the last couple of years on the road building a show that feels equally at home at bluegrass festivals, rock clubs, mid-sized theaters, and even full-scale, multi-artist arena shows – like the Gravel & Gold tour. The energy they bring with them every time they step on stage feels right at home in a lineup with Bentley et. al. The enjoyment shared by all is palpable in these exclusive photographs by Zach Belcher.
“I loved going out on the road with Dierks Bentley this summer,” Tuttle says. “His kind and welcoming personality shines through in his show and everything he does. I’m a big fan of his music and especially love his bluegrass material so it was a thrill to jump up on stage with him and his killer band each night for an acoustic portion of the set! Watching him play was like seeing a masterclass in putting on a great show that the audience will take with them forever and I’m so grateful for the ways Dierks spotlighted us and bluegrass music as a whole to his crowds.”
Enjoy this collection of photographs from Bentley’s and Tuttle’s appearances together, and don’t miss their Gravel & Gold and Road to El Dorado tours as they continue through the end of summer and into the fall.
All photos: Zach Belcher