by Lisa Kiser
Featuring Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban, LeAnn Rimes, Gary Allan and Luke Brian
Shiver me timbers – you’ll never see hicks and chicks file into Ford Field like they do when Kenny and company come to town. Our pirates were welcomed to the D with open arms in a full house of screaming fans. This year’s Poets and Pirates tour had an awesome lineup that was well worth the green it took to get there, in fact, it was an impressively solid show from start to finish. The show began with recent phenom Luke Bryan, who sounds as nice as he looks. Clad in a baseball cap and Motley Crue tee shirt, Bryan belted out the content of his winning musical collection, as well as a spirited rendition of “Good Directions” that was heartily enjoyed by fans. Sidenote: crap, that’s another album I have to invest in! Next at bat was “Mr. Rough Around the Edges” Gary Allen, who struck a chord with many. My constituents who were unfamiliar with Allan before his performance came away from the concert hardcore fans, in fact, a week later they’re still singing their praises. From “Gray Sky Morning” to “Chasing Airplanes” Allan has assembled an enjoyable lineup to make him a crowd favorite, even in the midst of Chesney and Urban. The lone lady performer LeAnn Rimes performed next. In all honesty, I was the least excited to hear her sing, yet I came away with a new respect for her. She does a phenomenal job live, and I actually prefer her in concert than on her records. My fellow concert-goers definitely appreciated her rendition of “Can’t Stop the Moonlight” from the movie Coyote Ugly. If there was a concert champion to be named, though, it would have to be Keith Urban. This guy can rock out a guitar like no other, and forced me to pull out my old Urban CDs to re-appreciate and continue to celebrate his talent. Urban is just an amazingly talented performer that deserves the ravest of rave reviews.For the main event, Mr. Kenny Chesney brought it home as always. A brilliant performer in his own right, headliner Chesney delivered his typical powerful, yet laid back vocals, taking us all away to the shores of Mexico. I’m absolutely a fan of “Got a Little Crazy” his new single that was a perfect fit in a throng of alchohol-buzzin’ country fans. Anytime Chesney performs you can expect an impressive show, with snazzy visuals and a flashy set, and this time was no exception. Also enjoyable was “When the Sun Goes Down” where Uncle Kracker joined him onstage for a little duet. At least, it would’ve been a duet had Kracker been a bit more sober… But you can’t really fault a guy for having a few too many when you’re listening to drinking songs all day, and watching him stumble around was good for a laugh anyway. Another hilarious happening was the crowd’s non-reaction to both Rimes and Chesney donning Detroit Lions apparel as an ode to the city and Ford Field. Though for some reason Lions fans still exist, they are the one sports team Michigan in general tends to brush aside, preferring instead other sporting representatives that can actually win. Overall, the experience was amazing and the quality has even improved over last year. Regardless of whether you’re a Chesney or Urban fan, the overall lineup of this concert was top-notch, and I must give it my highest recommendation of three John Deeres, two bales of hay and a rusted out beer can on a fence.