You’re always off to a good weekend when you start your Friday night off in “church”…and that is how 16-17,ooo+ fans kicked of their weekend last night at the Staples Center for Eric Church’s ‘Holdin’ My Own Tour’.
The arena flooded with thousands of Church fans…patiently waiting for the singer to make his “8 O’Clock sharp” entrance…around 8:30 pm the spotlight shined down on an empty microphone on the stage…but you could hear “Hallelujah” being sung, making you feel like you were truly in “church”, but no sign of the country rocker.
Followed by “Mistress In Music” accompanied by the Inglewood High School choir adding to the feeling of “church” on a Friday night. (See full set list below). Throughout the evening I realized a few things about Eric Church that as a long time fan made me appreciate him even more…
He LOVES what he does.
It is evident in his stage presence, his interactions with his fans and the passion behind his music. The fact that he would want to come out and play for three plus hours and “party” with his fans on a Friday night speaks volumes. And he’s not all about the lights and the “act”, he’s the real deal. He comes out with his raw talent and sings…giving the crowd exactly what the paid good money to see, getting them even more riled up with his frequent fist pumps.
He also LOVES Jack Daniels.
If his song “Jack Daniels” doesn’t give it away…I don’t know what does. After his performance of the hit single Church ran back stage for a “refresher”… poured shots for everyone and filled himself another drink! Jack Daniels “kicked his ass again like it does every time in LA” he commented when coming back to the stage.
And Los Angeles.
Each stop along his “Holdin’ My Own Tour” has been treated to a cover that is fitting to the city they are in. “Doing a song according to the area we’re in…never done it and may never do it again…something for Los Angeles” stated Church. It was (appropriately) a Randy Newman cover of “I Love L.A.”
He has a KILLER back up singer.
Everyone needs to know backing vocalist Joanna Cotten…this lady brought Southern Soul to the stage with “That’s Damn Rock & Roll” and a fun & feisty, “Chattanooga Lucy” followed later on in the set list with a soulful duet between Church and Cotten during Aretha Franklin’s “Baby I Love You.”
He pays tribute to The Hag.
Church’s salute to Merle Haggard…“Pledge Allegiance to the Hag” where the singer draped himself in a flag…flashing through a plethera of images of the late country legend on the boxed screen. His tribute couldn’t have been more appropriate as the anniversary of Haggard’s passing comes next week. The Country legend will never be forgotten…
Coming off of intermission with “Ain’t Killed Me Yet”, Church called out his fans stating “HALFTIME IS OVER!” Followed by “Guys Like Me” and apparently thinks California girls are crazy…but they are the best and the crowd went WILD.
There was no doubt Eric Church came to LA to party…his intentions were basically to turn the Staples Center into a bar…
I’m going to turn this place into a bar…a little bluesy, a little shitty…a little drunk …I think I can do it!” Church exclaimed.
And that he did…three marathon hours and 39 of Church’s greatest hits…one after another, the crowd going wild when their favorites were played. Each song bringing back a memory fans could relate to.
Without a doubt Los Angeles is one of his favorite places to play (he told us himself)…we knew the drill it was just us and it was just him going to play…and we will remember this show for a long time. If you ever have the chance to see his show, he’s got one great gospel to preach!
For all the latest information about Eric Church, including tour stops, visit his website ericchurch.com.
“Holdin’ My Own Tour” Complete Set List:
Mistress Named Music
That’s Damn Rock & Roll
Knives of Orleans
Drink in My Hand
Calling me home
How ‘Bout You
Sinners Like Me
Round Here Buzz
Like a Wrecking Ball
Pledge Allegiance to the Hag
Smoke a Little Smoke
Ain’t Killed Me Yet
Guys Like Me
Lotta Boot Left to Fill
Two Pink Lines
Kill a Word
I Love LA (Randy Newman cover)
Give Me Back My Hometown
Before She Does
Three Year Old
Holdin’ My Own
Like Jesus Does