Zach Miller will play two country music shows

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Miller’s other songs are titled “I was Hoping” and “Torn Up”. The one slated for release later this spring is “All Gas No Brakes.” He records his songs in Nashville at Dark River Studios, which is owned by his friend Colt Capperrune.

Miller’s first two live performances took place last May at the Good Life Sports Bar and Grill near his home in Omaha. He has since opened for national bands such as the Eli Young Band, Brantley Gilbert, Chase Rice, Parker McCollum and Lanco. Miller will open for David Nail on Saturday night at Joe’s on Weed Street.

Miller walked a unique path to the NFL. A quarterback at Nebraska-Omaha, he was immediately converted to a tight end after being selected by the Jaguars in the sixth round of the 2009 draft. His only experience in his new position at the university came in the Cactus Bowl, a Division II All-Star Game.

Miller played 66 games with 33 starts in three seasons with the Jaguars, catching 45 passes for 470 yards and four touchdowns. But he missed the next three years mainly due to injuries.

Miller revitalized his career with the Bears in 2015, catching 34 passes for 439 yards and five touchdowns. He followed in 2016 with 47 receptions for 486 yards and four touchdowns. But midway through the 2017 season, he suffered a devastating injury in a game at New Orleans that nearly cost him his leg and ended his NFL career.

Seeking to fill a significant football-free void in his life, Miller turned to music and particularly enjoys performing live in front of a crowd.

“That’s probably the closest thing to the feeling I had playing football,” Miller said. “And then you get a connection. I actually prefer stripped down sets where you can tell stories and connect with people. That’s where I feel the music the most. But there’s also something to be said when you have a full band and it’s a party and you can feel the energy in the room.

“The biggest thing I love about it is just feeling the energy of the crowd. You can connect in different ways than you did in football. Football is kind of like a disconnected thing. You feel the energy of the crowd, but you’re not connected. I can’t look into the crowd and see people’s reactions and see their faces and how they feel.

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