The backdrop of AT&T stadium's jumbo scoreboard was lit up with the "King of Country Music's" many accomplishments. George Strait held a press conference with local media about the last leg of the 26 city stop of his "Cowboy Rides Away" farewell tour. Announcing his retirement from touring is like an end to a very long chapter. The 61 year old is not retiring from music though as he has a contract to create 5 more albums for MCA, the record company Strait has been with since 1981.
Coming up for an ASCAP Founders award this November, Strait will be part of a long list of musicians such as Stevie Wonder, Carly Simon, Steely Dan, James Taylor and other noteworthy songwriters and composers who have made pioneering contributions to music by inspiring and influencing their fellow music creators. Flanked on each side by Dallas Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones and promoter and President of the Messina Group, Louis Messina; Strait held this rare press conference that was also streamed online to fans. Media could see fan tweets with the hashtag #CowboyRidesAway as Strait answered questions about his highlights and regrets.
One of Strait's biggest regrets in his thirty year career was that he didn't write more.
"One regret in my career was that I quit writing. I love to write. I found great songs from great writers in Nashville." Strait says.
He went on to talk about those the elements of a song that catches his attention.
"The melody grabs me first. Without a great melody, a song won't go too far. . . melody catches the ear first."
If you have ever been to a George Strait concert, he is one of the few entertainers that can fill the biggest of the biggest venues from Houston's Reliant Stadium of over 80,000 people to San Antonio's Alamodome with over 70,000 people; including Dallas' AT&T Stadium. Strait was the first concert held in the then named Cowboys Stadium in 2009.
The tour highlights
The tour is expected to make a stop in 26 cities beginning in January 2014 in Bossier City, LA. Playing at 23 arenas and 3 stadiums, the final concert of the tour will be at AT&T Stadium. However, there is no date set for the mega Dallas-Fort Worth area event. It looks like Strait's promoter Louis Messina is not going to tell us anytime soon,
“It’s going to be a record breaking event and we want to keep it somewhat of a surprise anyway. Trust me, it’s going to be a history making night” said Messina.
When you mix in Jerry Jones with the words "surprise" and "record breaking" you can only guess this may be another attendance record attempt of some kind. Who really knows? All I do know is that concert goers have 25 other chances to see this show in so many amazing cities. The other part to that is that each concert gets a unique opening act of some of today's and yesterday's country music superstars from Jason Aldean, Eric Church, Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride, Vince Gill, Sheryl Crow, Merle Haggard, Lee Ann Womack and so many others.
George Strait fan club members will be able to purchase tickets exclusively during a pre-sale period beginning at 10AM in each venue’s respective time zone on Tuesday, Sept. 24. American Express Cardmembers can purchase tickets before the general public. Tickets available to the general public will go on sale in select markets beginning Sept. 27 at 10AM at georgestrait.com.
George Strait 2014 The Cowboy Rides Away Tour Dates:
1/9 – CenturyLink – Bossier City, La.
1/10 – Frank Erwin Center – Austin, Texas
1/17 – CenturyLink Center – Omaha, Neb.
1/18 – Sprint Center – Kansas City, Mo.
1/30 – SAP Center – San Jose, Calif.
1/31 – Valley View Casino Center – San Diego, Calif.
2/1 – MGM Grand Arena – Las Vegas, Nev.
2/7 – US Airways Center – Phoenix, Ariz.
2/8 – Staples Center – Los Angeles, Calif.
2/14 – The Palace of Auburn Hills – Auburn Hills, Mich.
2/15 – Nationwide Arena – Columbus, Ohio
4/28 – Wells Fargo Arena – Philadelphia, Pa.
3/1 – Prudential Center – Newark, N.J.
3/7 – KFC Yum! Arena – Louisville, Ky.
3/8 – Allstate Arena – Chicago, Ill.
3/21 – Bridgestone Arena – Nashville, Tenn.
3/22 – Philips Arena – Atlanta, Ga.
4/4 – Intrust Bank Arena – Wichita, Kan.
4/5 – Pepsi Center – Denver, Colo.
4/11 – The Moda Center – Portland, Ore.
4/12 – Tacoma Dome – Tacoma, Wash.
4/18 – Wells Fargo Arena – Des Moines, Iowa
4/19 – BOK Arena – Tulsa, Okla.
5/23 – LSU Tiger Stadium Bayou Country Superfest – Baton Rouge, La.
5/31 – Gillette Stadium – Foxborough, Mass.
TBD – AT&T Stadium – Dallas, Texas
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