“She Comes From Boston” ~ Review From Kenny Chesney Concert

“She Comes From Boston” ~ Review From Kenny Chesney Concert

Hey everyone, it’s Erin! I’m back from a fantastic day at Gillette and I’m so excited to fill you in on the day! I got my ticket for this show back in December and I knew even then that this was my ticket to the funnest day of my Summer…and I was right. The stadium show at Gillette every year is my “hometown” show…even though I live two hours from there, it’s the closest show for me that Kenny does and it’s also where I saw Kenny for the first time back in 2005…so every year, no matter how many shows I go to and whatever happens, there’s just a special something about Gillette.

So yesterday morning, we loaded up my car, the “BIGSTAR” and hit the road…by the time we stopped for gas, ice, and a few other things, we got under way at about 7:45am. That put us at Gillette just before 9:00am. Imagine our shock (and horror!) to realize that this year they weren’t even letting cars line up to get into the parking lots…we knew the lots wouldn’t be opening for a couple of more hours, but they wouldn’t even let us line up! So we killed some time…drove around, stopped at the local McD’s where a lot of people were congregating just waiting to start the fun day ahead! At about 10:00, the state police notified us that they were opening the lots that were across the street from the stadium…the other lots that are directly in front of the stadium wouldn’t be opening until 1:30. So off we went, we got parked, and the festivities began! I have to tell you, watching 60,000 people tailgate is an amazing thing…grilling, beer games, music, friends, laughing…it’s just a great thing to see so many people having so much fun. As different as people can be, on this day, 60,000 people had a common agenda and it was a little overwhelming to realize that one man can bring this many people together and create such a fun atmosphere. So there we were, in the midst of tailgating in PERFECT weather…85* with just enough clouds in the sky to offer an occasional, brief shade from the sun.
After tailgating for about 2 hours, my phone goes off with a text message from a friend that said she was listening to XM radio and they said that Kenny was going to be performing at the XM stage shortly. Huh? No one had any idea where the XM stage was…the majority of the lots were under construction, and like I said before the other lots weren’t even opening until 1:30…so I thought “could this really be worth it and will we ever be able to figure the whole situation out?” Well I couldn’t just sit still so I went on a little mission and talked to a very young parking attendant…I don’t think he even knew who Kenny Chesney was, but he pointed me in the right direction when he said “yeah, they just came thru with a mega phone and said something about that.” That was all I needed to hear. Back to the car I went…the tailgating supplies were thrown in the back of my SUV and we headed off to find the XM stage. State Police were everywhere saying “no, you can’t cross here, you need to turn around and go that way”…it was getting frustrating and of course we were all fired up cause we wanted to see Kenny. FINALLY, a nice Statie let us cross the massive traffic jam that was Route 1 and we made our way into a big empty parking lot. Not really knowing which way to go, we were getting a little nervous when out of the blue we were approached by 3 members of Kenny’s crew riding around on a golf cart…they were headed across the street to shoot some footage of the tailgating, but they were happy to fill us in on the scoop of the XM stage. So after a few more minutes of walking, we saw the stage and apparently Leann Rimes had just left there after performing a few songs. So we were psyched but come on, could Kenny Chesney REALLY be coming out to perform here? There was only a handful of people there when we arrived and he was supposed to come out in 20 minutes…”yep, he’ll be here to perform a few songs” they assured us. So we planted ourselves right up front and center to wait for Kenny. Because of the parking situation, they waited an extra hour to allow more people to come over and see the show. That hour passed quick…Tambo and Wyatt came out and entertained us and of course they were playing Kenny’s XM channel, “No Shoes Radio.”
At 2:00 without any fan fare or commotion, Kenny walked on the small stage wearing sneakers, blue basketball mesh shorts, a grey cut off t-shirt, and OF COURSE a Red Sox baseball hat. He did an interview with the station before taking the stage to chat with us and play some songs. He performed “Boston” and “Got A Little Crazy” and then he and the boys (Wyatt, Clayton and Tambo) all jammed out together on a couple of cover songs. It was casual, laid back, and a great environment to see them in! Did I mention we were up front??:D

There was a young girl in the audience and she yelled “I want to be on stage” so Kenny said “well come on!” So she got up there with him and he hugged and kissed her and had her do a little intro for XM radio. Then someone from the crowd yelled “how’s your foot?” referring to his foot injury sustained back in April during a show. Jokingly he said “it hurts a little”…the whole crowd in unison went “awwwwwww” and that was exactly the reaction he was looking for when he said that…he cracked up and then proceeded to ask the person who had asked him the question how their foot was. It was funny. Another cool moment was when Kenny was presented with a t-shirt from a group of 50 friends that had traveled down together from Maine for the show. He was really touched by their enthusiasm…so those were some fun fan moments. After he left the stage, we went back over to our car to get our tickets and things to head into the show.

We made our way into the stadium right at showtime, 4pm, and made our way into the Sandbar. Gary Allan was just taking the stage…he gave a good performance and it was nice to see him perform since I had never seen him live before.

After Gary performed, it was time for Leann Rimes. She’s really turning into a good performer…she has amazing vocals and good stage presence…BUT, someone needs to chat with that girl! She was wearing a very short dress and it was a flowy type dress…so needless to say, I can now let you know that Leann was wearing white thongs and suffice it to say that I’ve now seen more of Leann Rimes than I ever cared to. Surely she has to know that she’s flashing the world her Britney!! Anyways, she was good and it was fun for the crowd when she put on a Tom Brady jersey.Next up: Sammy Hagar! Now I’ve heard people complain that Sammy is on the tour because he isn’t “country”…but let me tell you, it was quite obvious why he was there…he was there because he ROCKED and got the crowd pumped up! Even people that weren’t familiar with his music were having a great time because he was rocking! This was his last show of this tour with Kenny and I’m sad that more people won’t get to experience the show…so here’s hoping that they join forces again to bring great music to the crowd!After Sammy, it was time for Keith Urban (who, by the way, was being congratulated on the birth of his daughter by a PLANE flying overhead with a HUGE banner!) Keith did not disappoint…that man does a phenomenal job of entertaining the crowd and playing his music. He looked AWESOME and was just a blast to watch on stage! One thing that struck me about Keith was how appreciative he seemed…he continuously thanked the crowd as well as Kenny through out his set…very classy and genuine it seems.Now we were READY for Kenny! There was a lot of build-up for this show by Kenny and his team because in 2007, this was “the best show of the whole tour” and his whole crew had been waiting all year to get back here. So needless to say, the excitement inside the stadium was crazy! Kenny finally took the stage wearing blue jeans, a red Red Sox t-shirt, and his tan/straw cowboy hat and OMG, he looked HOT!!!! He was so excited to be back and we were just as excited to have him. He jammed through his usual hits like “Keg In The Closet,” “Summertime,” and “Young,” but it wasn’t until about an hour into the show when he decided to get away from the normal set list. He sang “Guitars, Tiki Bars, and A Whole Lotta Love,” “Old Blue Chair,” and then as it’s becoming tradition, he sang “Boston.” For those of you that aren’t familiar with the song, it was on his “Be As You Are” album and like all of those songs, it was never released as a single. The song tells of a girl from Boston who escaped her New England life for a much more laid back life in the islands, all the while wearing her “Red Sox cap.” For the last two years, even though the crowd has never heard this song on the radio, they have taken it away from Kenny and sang it to him so much harder than he ever could. It’s an awesome moment and Kenny had told us earlier in the day that he couldn’t wait to play it that night. So he sang it, we sang, and when the song was over the stage was dark and quiet when all of a sudden Kenny busted back out into the chorus and sang it again…it was phenomenal! When it came time for “Back Where I Come From,” we knew it would be fun since we’d grown accustomed to seeing images of our beloved Fenway Park on the screen during that song every year. Well this year, he took it MUCH further when he introduced two members of our New England Patriots to sing along with him…Mike Vrabel and Tedy Bruschi took the stage and the crowd went nuts. Before we could absorb that, Kenny continues “and here come various members of your Boston Red Sox!” The place ELECTRIFIED and I have to tell you, as a die-hard New England sports fan, it was actually a very moving moment…ok, ok, I’m not gonna lie, it brought tears to my eyes. To see all those guys on that stage huddled up around Kenny, all sharing the same microphone with their arms around each other, smiling from ear to ear, and belting out the lyrics was awesome, awesome, AWESOME!” Shortly after that, Kenny brought his Mom out to the stage to introduce her to the crowd…God love her, she was sporting her Boston t-shirt that they had specially made for this show to commemorate Kenny’s 4th year in a row at the stadium. Then he decided it was time to “get wild” and he sang David Allan Coe’s “You Never Even Called Me By My Name.” Tim Wakefield, our beloved Knuckle-baller for the Red Sox decided he should come sing it with Kenny but there was one problem…he didn’t know the words!! He caught on by the end of the song though and of course the crowd loved having him back out there! Kenny then proclaimed that it was actually time to end the show, that they were supposed to stop at that time…BUT, they were just gonna keep going. And they did…they played until 11:20 and just like that, the show was over.

(I’m sorry…this is where I should insert Kenny pictures from the show, but as luck would have it, my batteries died right before Kenny came on, so my friend is getting his pictures to me tomorrow…he was front row and he takes fabulous pictures, so I’ll post those for you tomorrow! I know, I’m sorry…so anti-climatic…but I’ll post them as soon as I get them!)

So here I sit today writing this review and I’m sad! I’m tired, I’m worn out, my voice is gone and I can’t help but be a little bummed that this day is over! New England has waited for this day since early December and as quickly as it came, it’s over. I can’t help but be in absolute amazement at how much joy one man can bring to 60,000 people in a single night…people from all walks of life, all with different stories, but for one day, we were all united and we have shared this amazing experience. I don’t know what else to say except that the whole day was just what I knew it would be…amazing.