After releasing a new album one week prior, Tracy Lawrence stops by the Michigan Theatre in Jackson, MI on Friday evening to perform his greatest hits.
Tucked away in the center of downtown Jackson, the luminous marquee sign reads “Tracy Lawrence” on the front of the 87 year old historic theatre. From under the sign, fans of young and old line up to enjoy a night of traditional country sounds of yesteryear.
Upon entering the theatre, fans flock the merchandise table to obtain the latest in t-shirts, hats and their own autographed copy of Tracy’s new album Good Ole Days. The album released just seven days earlier is Tracy’s 14th studio album consisting of 11 duets of his most iconic hits with some of country’s biggest superstars and newcomers of today’s country. Some of the artists participating on Tracy’s latest work are Tim McGraw, Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan along with Brad Arnold, the front man to the rock band 3 Doors Down.
The evening begins with Jackson native Donnie Allen coming to the stage with a short set to get the crowd into the mood. Standing center stage, Donnie is accompanied on stage with a guitar player on one side and keyboardist on the other. The trio opens the show with covers “Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old)” by Garth Brooks and “The Bottle Let Me Down” by Merle Haggard.
With a traditional country sound, Donnie and his two fellow musicians have the crowd eating out of their hands by time they finish their set with country classics “He Stopped Loving Her Today” and “Tennessee Whiskey” by George Jones.
After a short break for stage change, the crowd immediately jumps to their feet as Tracy takes the stage with his #1 rebellious up-tempo hit “If The Good Die Young.” Keeping the mood going, Tracy continues with “As Any Fool Can See” before claiming he is a “Better Man, Better Off.”
Welcoming the crowd and thanking them for coming to the show, Tracy admits to “having a head cold and with a lot of fluid in his ears. Being on cold medicine, I am not going to play guitar. I am going to do the best I can for you tonight and the boys are going to play their asses off for you. I am going to sing you some of all the older favorites with maybe some new ones off my new album.”
Taking a moment to slow it down with “Stars Over Texas,” Tracy adds that Kellie Pickler duets with him on this song for the new album as does newcomer Luke Combs on “If The World Had A Front Porch.”
As Tracy’s discomfort and feeling miserable starts to become evident, he grabs a chair and has a seat in order to carry on with his performance. Calling out for his “illegitimate son” Junior (guitar tech), Tracy asks him to play his guitar since “I am not doing too good.”
Growing up and being a fan of traditional country music, Tracy claims he won’t alter from that mold. Throughout his career, Tracy has accrued 18 #1’s and 14 million albums sold being traditional. With his own traditional sound he performs one of his favorites “Texas Tornado.”
Preparing to celebrate 27 years in the music business and touring, Tracy comments “I don’t know how the younger generation feels right now. I felt that I hoped I would die on that tour bus. I want to do this my whole life.” Looking at George Strait as an influence to him and his music, he feels that the song “Troubadour” was written for him and about him.
Going back to 1991 where it all started, Tracy performs his debut and first #1 single “Sticks And Stones” adding “Alibis,” “Renegades, Rebels And Rogues” and “Running Behind” to the run.
Giving his band a chance to show off their musical abilities, Tracy walks off stage while fiddle player Joe Caverlee fires up the crowd with his version of the Charlie Daniels hit “The South Is Gonna Do It.” During the showcase, Tracy can be seen standing off to the edge of the stage showing gratitude and admiration for the guys that stand behind him every night while on stage.
Returning back to the stage looking a bit refreshed, Tracy ignites the crowd once more before ending the set with two of his classic singles “Time Marches On” and “Paint Me A Birmingham.” Tracy exits the stage to a loud applause and chants for an encore.
Tracy concludes the evening with an encore performance and crowd participating “Find Out Who Your Friends Are.”
As the show ends, Tracy receives another standing ovation by the crowd as they feel thankful and satisfied for the performance they have just seen. Witnessing the determination in Tracy to not let his fans down and give them the show they expected left some in the crowd loving him as an artist that much more. On this evening in Jackson, MI, Tracy Lawrence gave all he had for his fans and left it all on the stage.
A special thank you to the concert and event promotion company from Zanesville, Ohio, Dusty Guitar Promotions, for bringing another top notch show to the Jackson area and the Michigan Theatre.
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Event Date: 17-NOV-2017
Donnie Allen setlist:
- Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old) 2. The Bottle Let Me Down 3. Give Me Wings 4. Neon Moon 5. Folsom Prison Blues 6. He Stopped Loving Her Today 7. Tennessee Whiskey
Tracy Lawrence setlist:
- If The Good Die Young 2. As Any Fool Can See 3. Better Man Better Off 4. Cloud Of Dust 5. Stars Over Texas 6. How A Cowgirl Says Goodbye 7. If The World Had A Front Porch 8. Used To The Pain 9. Texas Tornado 10. A Far Cry From You 11. Troubadour 12. Sticks And Stones 13. Alibis 14. Renegades, Rebels And Rogues 15. Can’t Break It To My Heart 16. Running Behind 17. The South’s Gonna Do It Again 18. Time Marches On 19. Paint Me A Birmingham Encore – 20. Find Out Who Your Friends Are