When you are one of the biggest names in country music and sell out two straight nights at St. Louis’ Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, like Luke Bryan did, you can pretty much do what you want. And for Bryan, who performed the first of two sold-out shows Thursday wanted to party.
And who can blame him? Bryan is in the midst of a successful tour, has a string of Number 1 hits (7 total), 8 of his last 10 singles have gone Platinum, he has won numerous awards and has a high energy, carefree attitude.
The style just seemed logical.
From fiery entrance of “That’s My Kind of Night” the tone was set. Fans who were dancing even before the show started (and there were numerous ones) were ecstatic.
Fans joined in sing-a-longs and girls screamed while Bryan ran through hit after hit, mixing mostly upbeat songs with a few ballads. While his voice isn’t exactly made for crooning ballads he pulls it off in his own electric way (See “Drunk on You”).
At one point Bryan brought out a large cooler and started passing out cans of beer to the audience (He even checked the ID of one young fan who just turned 21). While handing him a couple beers Bryan had joked the young man was headed for what he said sounded like a country song.
Bryan followed the established trend of bringing the openers onstage with him for a song. Cole Swindell and Bryan teamed up for “This is How We Roll” and Lee Brice came out for “If You Ain’t Here to Party” and actually was late coming out and missed his mark. Bryan took it in stride, as he seems to do with most everything else, and kept the party going.
A poignant and somber part of the show came when a mockup of an end of a pier was brought out for Bryan to sit on and sing “Drink a Beer” while a video of a lake at sunset played on the giant screen behind him. It must have looked spectacular to the fans in the first few rows.
Afterwards he toasted those who were important in everyone’s lives who they used to have a beer with. It was obvious that he was referring to his older siblings, Chris and Kelly, who both passed away unexpectedly. Bryan was understandably getting emotional during the toast.
With several members of the St. Louis Cardinals in attendance (Including staff ace Adam Wainright and Michael Wacha, among others) the show certainly became one of THE top shows to watch in the summer. And from Bryan’s performance he held up to that standard.
Lee Brice held the support role with a solid set of eleven songs.
Cole Swindell opened.
Luke Bryan Setlist:
That’s My Kind of Night
Rain is a Good Thing
Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye
All My Friends Say
Easy (Commodores cover)
Someone Else Calling You Baby
This is How We Roll (Florida Georgia Line cover- With Cole Swindell)
Only way I Know (Jason Aldean Cover)
If You Ain’t Here to Party (With Lee Brice)
Crash my party
Drink a Beer
Drunk on You
I Don’t Want This Night to End (with snippet of “Dynamite” – Taio Cruz cover)
Play it again
Country Girl (Shake it for Me)