[singlepic id=297 w=320 h=240 float=left]There’s something about Chicago for country star Brad Paisley. Maybe it’s because his wife, Kimberly Williams, spent time in the area when she attended Northwestern or maybe because Chicago has one of the largest country radio stations, and fan base, in the business. What that connection might be remains uncertain but, on Friday, it was clearly Sweet Home Chicago for this country music star.
“I really am in awe of your city and your people, Chicago. Thank you for making me a part of it tonight,” said Paisley in a tweet after his Friday night performance.
Being one of the most anticipated country concerts of the summer, it’s safe to say that fans at the nearly-packed First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre felt the same awe, and devotion, for the country star. Even in a season where concert sales have been on the decline and the temperatures pushing triple digits, the incline of the southwest suburban amphitheatre lawn was packed with area music fans.
Paisley opened with his current radio single, “Water”, and crafted the remainder of his set mostly with his number ones. Except for a few comedy infused interludes, Paisley only stopped to lend his two cents on growing up, prior to “Letter to Me” and tips for being a guy prior to “I’m Still a Guy”. Harnessing the power of recorded video, famed television star Andy Griffith join Paisley for a tribute like version of “Waitin’ on a Woman” and later Alison Krauss appeared for the duet portion of their 2004 hit, “Whiskey Lullaby”.
— View H2O Tour photos in the Word on the Street Gallery —
It would be unfair to attribute all of Friday night’s success to Paisley’s likeable quirkiness and heartfelt ballads. Country music stars Darius Rucker, along with Justin Moore, Josh Thompson, Steel Magnolia and Easton Corbin, joined Paisley on what is billed as the H2O Tour, complete with slip n’ slides and water themed entertainment.
Setting all of the water themed songs and pool references aside, the H2O Tour is to create awareness for Hope Through Healing Hands, a project to bring clean drinking water to impoverished areas. Something that Paisley, along with his tour mates, have championed for.
Mr. Paisley’s Set List:
American Saturday Night
Sweet Home Chicago intro
You Do The Math
Waiting on a Woman
Catch all the Fish
Download on iTunes:
Letter To Me
Fishin’ in the Dark
Mud on the Tires
I’m Still a Guy
I’m Gonna Miss Her
Welcome To The Future