"Vibrant, soulful, and energetic music from the heart of Tennessee"
For the past 6 years, The Smoky Nights have filled the music venues of Middle Tennessee with uplifting melodies and harmonies. After moving to Cookeville TN, singer/songwriters Lily and Anthony Nguyen formed an acoustic band inspired by the guitar-driven sounds of Music City. They developed an original style, combining acoustic guitar, mandolin, and violin with melodic pop arrangements to play for a variety of audiences. The husband-wife duo, originally from Wisconsin, wrote the music and lyrics to the band’s studio albums: “Burning Bridges” (2019), and “Waking Up In Wonderland” (2021).
After the release of “Burning Bridges” in July 2019, The Smoky Nights set out to play music for wider audiences across the US. The band has since played in Texas, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, and even Mexico. In late 2019, they opened for Grammy-Award winning and RIAA platinum country band Diamond Rio, and they have also supported Cookeville-based artist Jake Hoot, winner of Season 17 of NBC’s The Voice. In 2022 they were the opening act for rock bands Jasmine Cain, and Resurrection - A Journey Tribute.
The Smoky Nights describe their sound as a blend of soul, pop, folk, and R&B music with influences spanning multiple generations and genres. Artists like Fleetwood Mac, Etta James, Santana, Outkast, Fitz & the Tantrums, Leon Bridges, and Beyonce have all uniquely inspired the band’s songwriting. Although their music is atypical for the region, The Smoky Nights have found a loyal following in Tennessee and continue to attract fans through their energetic live performances.
GUITAR/VOCALS - ANTHONY NGUYEN
Anthony is a multi-instrumentalist: drummer for 21 years, saxophonist for 18 years, guitarist for 13 years, and singer since childhood. An engineer by trade, he graduated from Milwaukee School of Engineering with a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering. He also does live sound mixing, graphic design, and other creative work for the band!
MANDOLIN/VOCALS - LILY NGUYEN
Lily is a self-taught mandolinist, tambourine player, and our dynamic female lead singer & performer. A Tennessee Tech graduate with a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology, she is also our fashion designer, booking manager and plans our interstate tours! Together, Lily and Anthony wrote the lyrics & music for Burning Bridges (2019) and Waking Up In Wonderland (2021).
VIOLIN - STEPHANIE BROOKS
Stephanie is a freelance violinist, violist, and cellist from Lakeland, Florida. She recorded "Dreamcatcher" with the band in 2022 and joined shortly after as a full-time member. With a Bachelor's degree in performance from Florida State University, she also plays violin and viola in many Chattanooga area local bands and string ensembles.
DRUMS - DEREK LANE
Originally from Sparta, Derek started full-time with us in March 2020. He recorded drums for "Waking Up In Wonderland" (2021) at FAME Studios in Alabama. He's our man of many talents - drummer, gear tech, and tour driver! When he's not on the road with the band, he's spending time with his family & kids.
BASS - CHARLES GASTON
Charles joined the band in early 2020 at the Road to Nightfall series in Chattanooga! Our part-time bassist since, he plays both electric and upright. Not only is he a seasoned musician, he also teaches at Chattanooga State Community College. Charles recorded bass for "Waking Up In Wonderland" (2021) and has also joined us for large stage events and Fleetwood Mac Tribute shows.