Holler Country Music

Charles Wesley Godwin Cements His 'Next Big Thing' Status at Two Step Inn Festival 2023

April 16, 2023 11:49 am GMT
Last Edited May 3, 2023 2:11 pm GMT

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Holler Country Music
Holler Country Music
Holler Country Music

Photography by Laura Ord

What is it like to actively watch a star be born? Go see Charles Wesley Godwin perform live and you’ll find out.

The West Virginia-native brought his distinctive sound, one flecked with the deep holler influences of his Appalachian home, to the Two Step Inn stage this Saturday (April 15). Rugged but refreshing, his soot-coated baritone was let loose over the enraptured crowd, transporting them to the coal country that his songs illustrate.

While still relatively new to the country consciousness – his debut came in 2019 with the album Seneca and his 2021 release, How the Mighty Fall, seems to have set him up for stardom – this performance was by no means his first. The recent release of his live EP, Live From The Church, especially proved he was fit for the stage, but actually seeing him live you’ll understand then that he was born for it.

Godwin pulled from the best of his catalog for the early afternoon performance, all under the sweltering Texas sun. Crowned in a bandana, brows furrowed and guitar thrashing, the singer-songwriter was all business, tearing up the stage with his boot-stomping tunes.

He ripped through some of his harder-hitting songs, dropping to his knees alongside his lead guitarist to bang out the roaring ‘Hardwood Floors’ and ‘Lyin’ Low'. Then came his gripping song stories, including ‘Blood Feud’, ‘Temporary Town’ and ‘Seneca Creek’.

Holler Country Music

Photography by Laura Ord

Along the way, he told the crowd tales of his past, sharing wisdom on life, love and what happens when you mess with his family. Many of his tunes are naturally nods to his raising, but his final two songs seemed to speak to his heart.

He closed his performance with a pair of covers, the bluegrass standard ‘Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms’ and John Denver’s ‘Take Me Home, Country Roads.’ With eyes shut tight, he gave the last song his all. The crowd sang along to the Denver classic, but their words erupted into screams when Zach Bryan creeped onto the stage to help Godwin belt out the chorus.

The captivating hour-long performance showcased Godwin’s unmatched songwriting, confident stage presence and everything he has to offer as traditional country’s next big name.

Charles Wesley Godwin - Setlist

Take from his set at Two Step Inn Festival, Georgetown, Texas - Saturday, April 15, 2023:

  • Hardwood Floors
  • Lyin' Low
  • Blood Feud
  • Family Ties (unreleased)
  • Temporary Town
  • Another Leaf (unreleased)
  • Seneca Creek (Acoustic)
  • The Jealous Kind (Chris Knight cover)
  • Miner Imperfections (unreleased)
  • Jesse
  • Strong
  • Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms (traditional bluegrass cover)
  • Take Me Home, Country Roads (John Denver cover)

Photos by Laura Ord

For more coverage from Two Step Inn, see below:

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