95.3 The Bear was busy Thursday with live broadcasts at both the Tuscaloosa & Northport Walmart locations with the Pepsi 'A Southern Original' Tour and a whole lot more!

Along with registering people for VIP Pit Tickets to the Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam, we took the Pepsi Challenge and got to know two of country music's up and coming artists!

I'm talking of course about Kirstie Lovelady and Andrew Salgado.

Kirstie comes from a musical background of sorts. Not that her parents were singers or outstanding banjo players but they hung around with a lot of people who were. Her father was tour manager for rock legends Van Halen for more than ten years, and also worked with Marty Stuart and Travis Tritt to name a few. So she's grown up in and around the music business.

With her voice, Kirstie can sing you to sleep with the most angelic lullaby you've ever heard but as soon as you're off the meet the sandman, out comes this voice... powerful with a slight rasp. She has a edginess to her style and delivery similar to Miranda and with lyrics like, "... Jack picked me up in Tennessee, and Jim got me to Kentucky. Johnny helped me through my darkest days and Mark was there when he wouldn't stay. I haven't had the best company but at least the whiskey don't leave" she's proving that she knows her way around a song and is musically mature beyond her 21 years.

She also has the best quote on her Twitter account and website, "I don't do revenge. I write songs."

Andrew Salgado began honing his musical skills while still in high school with influences ranging from Keith Urban to Michael Jackson and Elvis. His big break came in 2013 when he became the Pepsi Southern Original competition winner and got to open for Eli Young Band and Toby Keith on the main stage at the Pepsi Gulf Coast Jam in Panama City Beach, FL!

When I watched Andrew play in the Walmart parking lot Thursday I was struck by not only his guitar skills but by the way he interacted with the crowds of people standing and walking by. While playing he has the ability to make people stop and interact. Whether it's just a smile or a quick dance move.

Join us at 4th & 23rd tonight (08/01) starting at 11pm as we judge and host the Pepsi Southern Original competition! 10 bands will play for the chance to open for Blake Shelton at the Gulf Coast Jam on August 31st!