I've always been proud to support and feature local talent from my home area of upstate New York, from local-turned-national artists like Hal Ketchum, Brian Prout of Diamond Rio, and Eddie Killgallon of Ricochet or a local artist that stayed in the Northeast to entertain their loyal fans.

In the beginning of my radio career, I often hosted, attended and promoted events for Northeast musicians like Mirinda James, Smokey Greene, Paula Frasier, Wayne Anderson, Al and Kathy Bain, Aged In The Hills, and Marty Wendell. Then in the 90s, I worked with local artists like Janelle Donovan, Valerie Delacruz, Annie Jackson, The County Line Rebels, Jamie Lee Thurston, Whitewater, and Two Lane Highway. In the 2000s, came the Hillbilly Horns, Loose Cannon, Carmine Dio, The Back 40 Band and so many others (I apologize if I left anyone out, I can't keep track anymore LOL).

Over the last few years, I've continued to keep an eye on local artists like John Karl, Gregg Simmons, Chelsea Cavanaugh, Phil Hoyt, Harold Ford, and Randy Montana (the son of local-turned-national songwriter Billy Montana who penned 'Bring On The Rain' for Jo Dee Messina, 'Suds In The Bucket' for Sara Evans, and 'More Than A Memory' for Garth Brooks).

Another hot Northeast act right now is the band Skeeter Creek. In August 2013, The popular party band reached a milestone by being invited to play Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill in Syracuse, New York. We recently caught up with members Dave and Joe to ask about the big event.

Dave Ahl: Were you worried about how a crowd from outside the Albany area would react to your performance?

Not worried at all...we want everyone to like what we do but we know we are not gonna make everyone happy....although the Syracuse crowd were all pretty happy.

How did you feel about playing an elite venue like Toby Keith's I Love This Bar and Grill?

Loved playing there...venue is huge w a nice big stage and a even bigger bar that the barmaids dance on...kinda like a coyote ugly feel.

How did you feel when it was over?

Seeing that Renee and I took the bus and went through 6 mason jars of moonshine we were kinda relieved it was over...lol....jk....as any show must come to an end but not before the creek freaks (some who drove the 2hr trip) do the one more song chant...that's when you know it's a great nite.

Joe Kulewicz: How did you get booked at Toby Keith's I Love This Bar And Grill?

We got booked there with the help of our fans, led by one of our biggest supporters, Sue Bogucki. They started a Facebook and email campaign and got the management to look into Skeeter Creek and consider booking us there. Our fans are such a major part of everything we do, to say we love them is the understatement of the year.

How would you describe the experience?

The show there was great! It's a top-shelf club. It's huge with a 1600 person capacity, state of the art sound system, huge dance floor, and amazing food!

What is your favorite Toby Keith song?

I have two favorite Toby songs. Weed with Willie is a fun tune and Courtesy of the red, white, and blue says was so important after 9/11. He has so many great songs!

Courtesy of Sue Bogucki