Country Jam 2011 is here!
Last night my girlfriend and I headed over to the Country Jam grounds around 6pm. The place wasn’t overly packed, which was nice. We set our lawn chairs on the grass with a perfect view of the big screen. That’s one nice aspect of Jam is you can sit anywhere in the place and have a great view of the artist on stage via the huge video screen.
The sound is great too. You can hear it from everywhere and it’s always mixed perfectly for music and vocals.
Anyway, the shows were great. We were able to catch Easton Corbin’s performance at about 7pm followed by headliner Blake Shelton at about 10pm local time. Both were amazing and everybody in the crowd was loving it.
Country Jam 2011 – Day 1
The lineup at Jam this year was good. When I first saw the list I knew there were four shows I’d be looking forward to. The first day included Blake and Easton. Day 2 has Joe Diffie (Wisconsin boy even if it was just a couple years) and David Nail on Saturday.
Day 1 did not disappoint.
Easton Corbin – Country Jam 2011
Easton was one of the artists I was really looking forward to seeing. It was a great way to start off the weekend. Easton is a throwback to the traditional country of the ’80s and ’90s – my personal favorite era in country music. People say he sounds like George Strait and that’s nothing to be ashamed of at all.
Easton got things kicked off with a few tracks from his debut album. I’ve been listening to the album for months now and couldn’t help, but mouth along with the lyrics. I try not to sing for a couple reasons:
- I can’t sing
- I don’t want to bother those around me
Songs like [easyazon-link asin=”B0039A8R76″]Leavin’ A Lonely Town[/easyazon-link], [easyazon-link asin=”B0039AEMZM”]Let Alone You[/easyazon-link], [easyazon-link asin=”B0039AATPO”]A Lot To Learn About Livin'[/easyazon-link], and others were great. Easton is a fine live performer. That’s true for many country acts. They’re great at sounding good live just as they do on record.
I found myself leaning over to my girlfriend and saying, “I love this song”. I had to say that about five times during the show and I’m sure she got sick of saying, “You said that about the last one…”.
In April I wrote about what I thought Easton would perform during the set. There wasn’t any Keith Whitely in the set, but Easton did play Put A Girl In It (originally done by Brooks & Dunn) and It Just Comes Natural (by George Strait of course). A couple other covers where thrown in there and it made for a nice hourlong set.
Something I like is when artists preview new music. Easton snuck in one track from a recent recording session. I don’t know if we’ll hear it on radio in the coming months, but you never know.
Easton Corbin – Tulsa, Texas – Live
The time went by fast and I found myself wanting Easton to keep playing. I suppose that’s a good sign for this country newcomer. He could be at the point in his career where Blake Shelton was back in 2002 when he first visited Eau Claire and Country Jam.
Blake Shelton – Country Jam 2011
Blake came out rocking with [easyazon-link asin=”B003XSXPX0″]All About Tonight[/easyazon-link]. He interacted with the crowd in between just about every other song. It was a welcomed addition to the set. People were glued to his every word the entire time as he joked about his previous exes down in Texas, his recent marriage, and his time on The Voice.
There was plenty of music as well. Highlights of the night included [easyazon-link asin=”B004T6U1YQ”]Honey Bee[/easyazon-link], [easyazon-link asin=”B0038RQP6K”]Kiss My Country Ass[/easyazon-link], and the encore song – [easyazon-link asin=”B002PDGEVO”]Ol’ Red[/easyazon-link]. Those were my favorite moments, but others seemed to really enjoy [easyazon-link asin=”B00187TWY4″]Home[/easyazon-link] and [easyazon-link asin=”B0058U21N6″]God Gave Me You[/easyazon-link], Blake’s latest single.
Another great moment from the show was when Blake played a medley of songs not typical of country music. The songs were worked in as Blake discussed growing up with a crazy family. He mentioned his parents, his brother, and his sister.
Blake then went into Play That Funky Music, Centerfold, and My Prerogative. Now those are songs you don’t expect to hear at a country show, but the fans were eating it up. It was a great moment in the show. Where else can you hear Wild Cherry, The J. Geils Band, and Bobby Brown back to back to back?
It was great.
Back in April I thought Blake would play a bit more new music from his latest album, but being he already has a huge collection of songs it wasn’t a surprise when he didn’t. He also mentioned he didn’t like when he went to concerts and artists only played songs from their latest album. That’s something pretty unique in country music where the artists typically play their classics. Fans appreciate that.
Everybody seemed more than happy with Blake’s performance. He’s welcome back at Jam anytime and I’m sure the fans would pack the house once again.
Blake Shelton – Honey Bee
Day 2 – Coming soon…
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