Hellbound Glory's Leroy Virgil hails from Washington State and moved to Reno to start the band. But thanks to "some crazy guy named Kid Rock," the group has found a stronghold in Michigan.
"I can't believe the guy opened the door a little bit for me," says Virgil, 32. Rock's patronage has included having Hellbound Glory play on his Chillin' The Most cruise and open dates on the winter-spring leg of his Rebel Soul Tour, along with two nights of the recent DTE Energy Music Theatre stand.
"I'll be forever in debt to that guy. I feel like the street kid that he took in, like, 'Thank you for all the good food. Thank you for the opportunity. Thank you for the booze...' He's definitely one of the coolest people I've ever met."
Virgil, who's currently working on Hellbound Glory's fourth album, feels that he and his band have upheld its end of the bargain, too, thanks to a gritty, authentic sound that resonates with the same kind of blue collar alchemy that's part of Rock's stock in trade.
"His crowd, they're all just working people," explains Virgil. "They're just having fun, and when I watch him perform you can see how much people are feeling what he's singing about, like he's expressing all their hopes and dreams and how they feel. He's expressing it for them so they don't have to.
"That's one of the things I hope I'm doing, too. I'm just trying to get better and better at it, and I won't put anything out until I feel like it's the very best it can be."
Hellbound Glory performs with Supersuckers, Whiskey Clan and Jeremy Porter & the Tucos on Sunday, Sept. 15, at Small's, 10339 Conant, Hamtramck. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $13 in advance, $15 day of show. Call 313-873-1117 or visit www.smallsbardetroit.com.
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