Patterson Hood Flies Solo for Special Night of Songs

The beloved co-founder of the Drive-By Truckers returns to Macon for a one-man-band night of stories and songs at The Capitol Theatre

Though he’s not quite sure of the exact date, Patterson Hood can tell you one thing about his last solo trip to Macon, Georgia: it was far too long ago.

“The last time I played Macon, I believe was that crazy house concert that I did at the Crisco Mansion,” he recalled to The Creek’s Sam Stephens and Lisa Love in a new interview.

“It’s been 10 years or more, but it was amazing. I’ve been hoping to do a solo show and I’m glad to do one at the theater because I love playing there.”

The Drive-By Truckers’ Hood returns to Central Georgia on Sunday, December 3rd for a special solo show at the Capitol, where he’ll no doubt delight everyone with a mix of both solo and band tunes blended with stories and anecdotes curated over years of traveling, writing, living, and learning.

Those expecting a Truckers-esque evening might want to prepare themselves for something even more rare and unique, but still spontaneous in a way that will feel familiar to “DBT” devotees.

“You know, for the Truckers on tour, we don’t use a setlist. We decide the first song right before we go on and then it’s just basically chaos,” Hood said with a laugh.

“[Mike] Cooley and I go back and forth. I don’t know what he’s gonna play and he doesn’t know what I’m gonna play. We’ve been doing it for so long we’ve gotten good at it. People don’t realize the chaos and that’s kind of part of the fun of it, you know, seeing how smooth and fast we can make the transitions with no one knowing what’s coming next. But for solo, I don’t trust myself to not have a complete mental lapse up there and not know what to play! So, I have a master list, like a list of songs that I’m pretty sure I know the words of at any given time.”

That list of 40 or 50 songs allows him to feel the energy of the audience and let the mood of the room dictate where the evening will go musically. It’s a departure from the way the Truckers operate, but for Hood, that’s part of the appeal.

“I still don’t plan too much out. It depends on what I get from the crowd and what I’m feeling myself, too. Some nights people might be yelling requests and I just don’t play them because I don’t feel like it,” he said with another boisterous laugh.

“But some nights it works.”

Both Hood and Cooley frequently tour solo. For Hood, the experience with the band is indescribable and irreplaceable. But the solo shows have opened up an entirely new means of connecting with his audiences that have been equally illuminating for the singer and songwriter.

“I love my day job because I love playing in the band and there’s nothing like the thrill of that. But the solo thing has got its own charm for me. I really enjoy the more personal one-on-one interaction of it. And it gives me a chance to really sink just deeper into the actual song itself than the performance part. I like the balance of getting to do both.”

There are still tickets available for Hood’s Sunday show on Dec. 3rd at The Capitol Theatre. Purchase them here.