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Forums :: Dan Peek Fan Blog :: Fair Music??


Poster: King_of_Glass
S - Here is my review of the two concerts I saw at the local county fair, but I first want to say that writing a review to me is like having to do a book report back in our school days. I never enjoyed doing book reports. Nonetheless: The first concert that I attending was that of Joe Nichols. The concerts were scheduled for 9:30 PM following the rodeo, but the rodeo seldom concludes by 9:30. It's more like at 10:00. Anyway, I arrived on the fairgrounds about 8:30. I visited some of the exhibits, but I declined the livestock section because the smell was just too unpleasant to put it nicely. It had rained on my way up, and I knew I should have brought along my baseball cap, but I forgot. The cap was mainly to keep the rain off my glasses since the concerts are held outside. Fortunately, the rain was only a light drizzle by the time I arrived and had stopped shortly afterwards. With a whole hour on my hands before the Nichols concert, I visited various areas of the fairground before I headed towards the concert area to find very few people there. At first I thought maybe the concert had been canceled. After speaking to one of the people setting up the stage, I was told it was still on but if lightning returned, the area on the ground in front of the stage would have to be cleared out due to safety concerns. I staked out my spot. I decided to stand in front on the stage but to the left. It appeared to me that it would be the best area to see everything happening on stage. One would have thought being directly in front and center would have been better but not so being that there was about a three foot gap between the edge of the front of the stage and the railing. Plus, in the center two security guards would be posted. So, from my chosen place on the front left, I would be about 20 feet from the center mike, and I wouldn't have to look past the security guys. Shortly, other attendees started arriving. The front started to fill. The concert started about 9:50. My hour-and-twenty minutes of standing felt only about half that time as I chatted with fellow attendees. The drizzle had stopped and the concert soon started. As Joe Nichols and his band took the stage, wouldn't you know it, the drizzle started again. But, fortunately, after the first song it stopped and never started again. I think one of the first things an attendee notices about the band is what they're wearing or at least it is for me. I know it's all about the music but I thought the band members could have at least dressed a bit better especially Joe Nichols himself. I expected JN to be wearing blue jeans and cowboy boots, of course, being that he's a country music performer, but at least a nice shirt instead of a old black t-shirt. It gave me the impression like as if he had dressed to mow the lawn. His band members were dressed about the same way as he was him. I thought he was energetic, and he put on a good show. I, however, was not impressed enough to see him again if I had the opportunity. What I seemed to notice the most about his singing is that he isn't (at least during this performance) able to carry a note well for an extended period. He never introduced his band which I thought was odd. I had never seen that before. On my way back home after the concert, I was listening to a radio station from another state. As I drove within a block of being home, a JN song came on. The next morning on my way to work and within five minutes of my drive, another JN song was being played. I thought that was quite coincidental. On to the next night's concert. I was looking forward to seeing Dwight Yoakam even though I don't own a single CD of his - not even a single song on any CD of any kind. I just knew he had a lot of hits that I liked and was a big name during the 80s and 90s. Plus, he was a decent actor in a few movies he had performed in. I had planned to stand in the exact spot for the Yoakam concert as I did for Nichols'. It was an excellent spot to see all the action that was happening on stage. I had never stood in front of a stage before while attending a concert as I had done the night before - never had the desire. But, I soon learned that's the only way to see a concert - up front and personal - if permitted. I left the house for my 20 minute drive to the fairgrounds. I was determined to get my same spot as the night before. So determined in fact that I arrived on the grounds two hours before the scheduled time of 9:30 PM! I brought along a child-size folding chair to sit on as I waited, but as it turned out, I never used it. As I rounded the corner to see if my spot would be available (of course it would be because no other nut would be crazy enough to arrive so early, right?) Well, actually, wrong. There were about eight others, but they was positioned directly in the center which was great for me. It was a beautiful night and about 75 degrees with a slight breeze which felt great. 7:30 surprisingly turned into 9:30 quite quickly. Chatting with those around me caused the time to really fly by. I especially enjoyed visiting with an upcoming college senior who had spent his summer here working as an intern for the local economic development council. He was from Ohio and would be returning to college there in a few weeks to finish up his major in mass communications. He and I talked about such things as his major, the current news events of this world and our religious beliefs. I was very impressed that he had a good set of morals, and he knew what he wanted to do with his life. The rodeo had ended and it was about 10:00. Surely Dwight Yoakam and his band were waiting in the trailer behind the stage where the performers usually wait or so I thought. An announcer came on stage to say DY and his band were on the way and for us to hold tight. About 15-20 minutes later, the headlights of a bus could be seen driving up behind the stage. Soon, I could see the glittering from the jackets being worn by several people. It would be about another 15 minutes before the members hit the stage. I believe DY and company were doing a meet-and-greet for radio contest winners back behind the stage where the bus had driven up. It was probably now 10:30. I'm guessing as I never wear a watch anymore. I know it's strange of me not to wear a watch. Haven't for years. Comparing Yoakam's set-up on stage compared to Nichols': Yoakam's was very professional-looking while JN's wasn't. There were several stylish white chairs on chrome stands on stage along with a matching white table which had a metal champagne bottle holder on top of it. I could see a bottle of water in it. Interestingly though, I don't recall anyone taking the bottle from the holder. Nor, do I remember seeing DY take a drink during his entire performance. There was a music stand to the right of the center mike. There were notes on it as I could clearly see two large metal clips attached to the top of the stand. Printed on the front of the bass portion of the drum set was "3 Pears." Its meaning was a total mystery to me at the time. I had eagerly and patiently waited THREE HOURS for the concert and standing all the while. I couldn't believe it...lightning was starting to flicker! I thought, "Really? You can't be serious!" I hoped maybe that the band could at least play a few songs before the storm rolled in. Finally, the band hit the stage. Including DY, there were five members. Three were dressed in great-looking sequin jackets - the bass player, the keyboardist and the lead guitarist. They looked sharp and professional! DY was wearing a denim jacket with a sequin trim on the bottom decked out with diamond, hearts and spades. He worn cowboy boots with a matching card design on them - ace of spades - if I remember correctly. DY is known for his skin-tight jeans and his lanky legs. To the delight of the female attendees, his jeans were so tight that you could see the outline of the top of his boots underneath. They played hit-after-hit plus a few covers including CCR's "Who'll Stop The Rain." They also played a song that they recently added according to DY. That, I could tell, was the reason for the music stand. Being up so close, I could see DY glancing at it as he performed. He obviously needed it to help him remember the words. For about the first 30 minutes, they basically played one song after another with very little time in between. My guess was so they could get in as many songs as possible in their allotted time. About l5 minutes into the concert, a security guy climbed onto the railing directly in front of me causing me to step back as he turned on his flashlight and pointed it at a male attendee recording the show with a video recorder. I was shocked that he loudly ordered him to stop recording and to turn it off. All the while, many others were recording the show with their i-phones. There obviously was a difference in why one was permitted while the other wasn't (but not obvious enough for me to know why even now). That occurred twice with two different attendees. It ended up as a beautiful night of country music performed flawlessly by a big name of the 80s and 90s. DY was very entertaining when he would dance and spin around in circles as playing his guitar. I was told by my co-worker that her daughter's boyfriend who works at the local airport said the band arrived there after the concert at about 1:30 AM to fly out on a private plane. I did see on the internet that they were scheduled to perform the next night in another state. In closing, "3 Pears" is the name of DY's 2012 album with the same title track. Below is a link from YouTube plus a very quirky song entitled, "Waterfall," which was also played. DY jokingly said it's a strange song, but he's a strange person. Why the title "3 Pears"? I'll let you google why. Oops, can't get the links to work. I'll try them again later.

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