top of page
  • Cheyenne Johnson

Concert Review: Louden Swain at CREATION Charlotte-Concord

Photo credits: Louden Swain (

Attending CREATION Charlotte-Concord 2023, I had the wonderful pleasure of seeing Louden Swain perform again during their Saturday Night Special concert. The concert took place the evening of 8/19 at the Charlotte-Concord Embassy Suites and was part of a three-day convention. For those unfamiliar with this event, the convention was hosted by Creation Entertainment and brought together fans of the CW’s Supernatural, as well as fans of Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles’ other projects. Louden Swain serves as the convention’s house band, providing music and entertainment throughout the weekend. The group consists of frontman and Supernatural star Rob Benedict, guitarist Billy Moran, bassist Michael Borja, and drummer Stephen Norton. Their Saturday Night Special concert is one of the convention’s usual events, bringing out fans for a captivating performance that includes appearances from the convention's celebrity guests.

Kicking off the show with explosive energy, Louden Swain opened with “Gimme Some” from their latest album, Feelings and Such. The track showcases the band’s strong indie rock sound, featuring driving guitar riffs and infectious melodies. Keeping the night alive, the band continued to play banger after banger, following the feisty opener with songs like “Comeback Kid” and “January.” Sticking with the concert’s tradition of bringing out celebrity guests, Richard Speight Jr. joined the band on stage to play bass for the song, “Help You.” This track slowed things down a bit, taking time to highlight Rob Benedict's beautiful, twangy vocals and the band's ability to perform a ballad as well as they perform faster tracks.

Photo Credits: The Drummer's Journal

Bouncing between original songs and covers, Louden Swain spices things up for the fans by bringing out guests to cover tracks from artists like Bon Jovi and Queen. One of the incredible covers included a performance from Creation’s Stephanie Dizon, singing “Seven Nation Army” by The White Stripes. Gil McKinney soon followed Stephanie’s performance with a cover of “I’m Just Ken” from the new Barbie movie. Not only were McKinney’s vocals incredible for this song, but the cover was also just a fun addition to the band’s already engaging setlist. Another highlight of the show was Jojo Fleites’ performance of “Don’t Stop Me Now” by Queen. Jojo’s powerful, belting vocals and the song’s upbeat energy got the crowd going crazy, making it a hard act to follow.

Bravely coming after Jojo’s flawless performance, Jason Manns joined the band on stage to sing “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen. Manns’ soulful vocals are always intoxicating to listen to, making this cover a memorable one even after Jojo’s act. Keeping the crowd pumped up, Briana Buckmaster came out to sing “Bed of Roses” by Bon Jovi. Buckmaster’s deep, raspy vocals were a great fit for the song, making the cover a compelling experience. Switching genres up a bit, Richard Speight Jr. came out to perform a cover of “Copperhead Road” by Steve Earle. Speight’s vocal twang put the yee to the haw in this cover, giving us a Southern rock moment that drove the audience wild. Eventually, Mark Sheppard came out to the join the band on drums, performing Louden Swain’s “Next to the Light.” Seeing Sheppard jamming on stage seemed to be a fan-favorite moment during the concert, causing some audience members to give a standing ovation after his entrance. To end the concert, Louden Swain brought all the guest performers back out plus Hayden Lee to perform a cover of “Up On Cripple Creek” by The Band. It was an exhilarating finale for the night, giving fans one last moment to see the celebrity guests perform with the band.

Louden Swain’s Saturday Night Special is fan service at its finest, giving fans of the band and Supernatural unforgettable memories to cherish for years to come. If the show is ever in your area, go immediately; it’s an experience you’ll never regret!

Written By Cheyenne Johnson

*copyright not intended. Fair use act, section 107.


bottom of page