For Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry, the show must go on. After the tragic death of his longtime duo partner, Troy Gentry, in a helicopter crash on Sept. 8, the band will kick off their Here's to You Tour on Jan. 19, in Sioux Falls, S.D., in support of their final Here's to You album, which will be released on Feb. 2.
"I'm anxious to get back out on the road and play some new music for our friends and fans," says Gentry. "Next year marks the 20th anniversary of our band – we've got lots to celebrate and look forward to in 2018."
"Better Me," the debut single from Here's to You, is already in the Top 40 and climbing. The song, which was played at Gentry's funeral, is the perfect way to honor his enduring legacy.
"'Better Me' is a song we all loved and Troy sings his a-s off on it," shares Gentry. "It speaks volumes about his life and who he had become and everybody he touched and how much he loved his family. I am so proud of this song and also to call him my friend, my family, my brother for 30 years."
Montgomery returned to the stage for the first time at last month's CMA Awards, where he made a surprise appearance, joining Dierks Bentley and Rascal Flatts in tribute to Gentry, performing one of Montgomery Gentry's early hits, "My Town."
"I've never done anything else but play music," Montgomery told People. "It's all I've ever known ... He was more than just a singer. He was a brother and he was always there. As far as I'm concerned, we're still making music together."
Montgomery Gentry will spend much of the year on the road, wrapping up the Here's to You Tour on Sept. 15 in Ventura, Calif. A list of upcoming dates is available on Montgomery Gentry's website.