The Bluebird hosts headliner Cody Jinks, along with openers Whitey Morgan and Ward Davis. Jinks and Davis have been on tour together for months, with 16 shows left.
Fans eagerly await to be let in with high hopes of finding a spot by the stage. The doors open promptly at 7:00 p.m. on Sept. 30th.
Cody Jinks relaxes on his tour bus before a scheduled meet and greet with fans. He narrows in on his performance, preparing mentally for a two hour show.
The tour bus Jinks, Davis, and their crew live on. The bus contains 12 bunks, just enough for band members and a couple roadies.
The crowd becomes immobile by 8 p.m. with people walking in and out of the crowd. The numbers reached over 500, which is a standout crowd for The Bluebird on a Saturday night.
Fans of Cody Jinks converse before the show. They take a look inside to catch a glimpse of Ward Davis’ set.
Jinks on stage during the first song of his performance. His apparel is often highlighted by a brown cowboy hat, graphic t-shirt, jeans and boots.
Another view of just a portion of the crown at The Bluebird. The fans are awaiting the headliner, Cody Jinks.
The Tone Deaf Hippies, the moniker of his band, is comprised of five pieces. The crowd is almost immobile once Jinks and his band enter the stage.
An indefinite line turns into an empty block by 2 a.m. Jinks indulged himself in a sellout crowd.
A line stretches all the way from the crowded front door of The Bluebird Nightclub to open doors of Global Gifts, located on the other side of 6th St. in downtown Bloomington. There is a shining of spurs on the boots of some country folk wearing multicolored flannels, and the occasional shirt that reads “Cody Jinks”. In the midst of the annual Lotus Festival, the line at the Bluebird seems to overtake the block at 6 p.m. on the crisp, pre-autumn evening of Sept. 30th. The sign on the marquee reads “CODY JINKS, WHITEY MORGAN, WARD DAVIS, SOLD OUT”.
The huge draw at the Bluebird is nothing new to Cody Jinks by now. He has been touring and playing shows for years, crafting a type of sound that challenges the standard ‘popcorn’ Country of today. Just the night before he opened up for Aaron Lewis – former front man of post-grunge band Staind. At age 37, he has been traveling on a tour bus for months now and indulges, humbly, in every minute of it.
“I’ve been all around this country in vans, pickup trucks, mobile homes… Man, I’m 37 and I’ve only been on a tour bus for a year. We didn’t take the easy road, that’s for sure.”
Jinks has been recording and touring longer than some millennials’ life spans. Interestingly, he was immersed in country music as a child but found a love for metal as he got older. Upon the breakup of his metal band, Unchecked Aggression, in 2003, he took time off from making and releasing music. He then returned to his roots in country music in the mid-2000’s. He began writing and releasing music again, however, it is his breakout record, I Am Not the Devil, which debuted at No. 4 on the Billboard’s Country Albums chart in 2016 that makes him a fairly known artist. His notoriety has since become larger in the community of country fans since this release.
“Our [fans] are very much middle class, blue collar, hard working people and you know there are a lot of things going on in this country right now. I want to address that sparingly in my music, but the idea is, you know, you want to write songs where any person hears it and is like ‘Oh, okay, yeah I get that!’”
Jinks carries a mild manner, which may combat the interpretation of his opinions to some. His music speaks to a part of America that derives its way of life in tradition and ‘honky tonk’ methods. He is rooted in his beliefs, but does not admit to any political affiliation through his music. He is an artist who acknowledges his influence.
“You know, in the business, you are going to find that half of the people who listen to your music are going to hate what you said, or half of them may love it… People love to hear your songs, but they don’t want to hear your opinions.”
The country singer from Texas possesses an attitude of respect and dignity for all who listen to his music. His success is a direct result of his willingness to embrace independence, as he does not work with a label. He would agree that success is about getting in a van and doing it, no questions asked. Continuously toiling to make his music known, Jinks prefers a simplistic view on life and makes his message heard all while selling out The Bluebird in Bloomington, Indiana.
He lives and works by two tenets that he carries through all of his work, whether or not it relates to music.
“Two rules, man: Work hard and be nice.”