Country superstar Jason Aldean made a stop in Saint Louis Saturday at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre and put in his hat in the ring for the CMA’s Entertainer of the Year award with a vibrant set and engaging show.
Aldean’s fifth sell-out in the Saint Louis area in as many years with his ability to keep the crowd in his hands showed just how far Aldean has come since his first headlining show in the area in 2010.
I have to admit, I wasn’t holding out much hope for an exciting show since I was bored with his awkward show in March 27, 2010 Saint Charles, but Aldean pleasantly proved me wrong Saturday with a show that was vibrant as much as it was fun.
Aldean exploded out with “Hicktown” and “My Kinda Party” complete with pyro, flames and large video screens spewing fire as he entered on a lifted platform behind his backing band. It was easy to see that within the first 10 minutes the show had a special vibe to it.
In his second go around for his “Burn It Down Tour” Aldean has grown accustomed to the headlining slot and has become more engaging. With an energy level that was on overdrive all night Aldean hit every corner of the stage consistently while belting out hit after hit.
Songs like “Dirt Road Anthem” and “Burnin’ It Down” were obvious crowd pleasers. But it was what he did with the songs like “Fly Over States” and “Johnny Cash” that held the audience in the palm of his hand with poignant vocals and excellent production work from his crew. His powerful yet soothing vocals and energized production made the show a feast of sight and sound.
His backing band was very tight throughout the set and Aldean’s vocals stood strong and unwavering as his featured asset. In taking a cue from his buddy Luke Bryan Aldean actively engaged the crowd throughout the show and repeatedly thanked the Gateway City for their support (i.e. the 5 consecutive sold-out shows).
Not once did the show falter or did the energy level drop. Even when Aldean asked if there was any Rams fans in the house, the response was a loud mix of applause and boos. A volatile issue at best, the mixed reaction from the crowd was directed at Rams owner Stan Kronke for openly trying to shop the Rams out of the city. Aldean steered the crowd back to the positive by giving props to their newest running back, fellow Georgian Todd Gurley.
One of the musical highlights came from “The Only Way I Know” when openers Cole Swindell and Tyler Farr joined him onstage, much to the crowd’s approval.
Swindell and Farr also had upbeat sets opening for Aldean. But unlike in years past where openers like Florida Georgia Line and Luke Bryan stole the show in some fans’ eyes this night was clearly Aldean’s shining moment. Maybe this will be the year the Country Music Association Awards finally bestows Aldean with the coveted Entertainer of the Year. We will find out November 4 on ABC.
From what I saw Saturday night in Saint Louis that answer should be a no-brainer. He certainly earned my vote. (Are you listening CMA’s?)
Jason Aldean Setlist:
My Kinda Party (Brantley Gilbert cover)
Tattoos On This Town
Tonight Looks Good on You
Big Green Tractor
Sweet Little Somethin’
Take a Little Ride
Fly Over States
Two Night Town
Just Gettin’ Started
When She Says Baby
Summer of ’69 (Bryan Adams cover)
The Only Way I Know
Burnin’ It Down
Dirt Road Anthem (Brantley Gilbert cover)
Tyler Farr Setlist:
Ain’t Even Drinkin’
Whiskey in My Water
Suffer in Peace
A Guy Walks Into A Bar
Better in Boots
Cole Swindell Setlist:
Brought to You by Beer
Hope You Get Lonely Tonight
Let Me See Ya Girl
Ain’t Worth the Whiskey