Country star shows other entertainers how it’s done at California Mid-State Fair
Note: As part of The Tribune’s coverage of the 2012 California Mid-State Fair, we’re running a series of concert reviews. Below is Tribune staffer Lori Scott’s blow-by-blow commentary on a July 25 concert by country acts Easton Corbin, The Band Perry and Brad Paisley.
The house was packed and you could feel the excitement in the air. People were ready for a good show and these acts didn’t disappoint!
Easton Corbin came on first. He started with “This Feels A Lot Like Love,” then asked if Paso Robles was ready to party. The crowd exploded with a very enthusiastic “YEAH!!”
As Easton went into his next song, the hit single “I’m A Little More Country Than That,” the crowd started singing along — right from the first word. Everyone loved this song!
After singing “Loving You Is Fun” and “I Just Can’t Love You Back,” Corbin gave the crowd a first listen to one of the songs that will be on his new album, “”All Over The Road,” scheduled to released on Sept. 18. Easton finished his set with his hit single “Roll With It”.
Since the country singer only played for 30 minutes, he didn’t really have time to get the crowd really involved. All in all, the crowd was into the music. We wished that he could play a bit longer.
The Band Perry
Second in the lineup was sibling trio The Band Perry, which played for about 40 minutes.
Lead singer Kimberly Perry came out wearing a cute yellow dress and some cowboy boots, while her brothers Reid and Neil wore jeans and T-shirts.
When the first note of “Sugar, Sugar” hit, lights flashed all over and the crowd went wild. It was fun to see The Band Perry doing their thing as siblings up there.
When the song was over, Kimberly Perry shouted, “I want to hear my country music family make some noise tonight,” and then launched into “Hip To My Heart.” Later, the band’s rendition of Tom Petty’s “Free Falling” segued right into “All Your Life”.
“It’s going to be a great night for country music,” Kim exclaimed, and the crowd certainly agreed!
When The Band Perry did their cover of Queen’s “Fat Bottom Girls,” those around me — including myself — went nuts after hearing this rock classic done in the country genre!
About halfway into the show, Kimberly held up a red concert T-shirt and asked, “Who wants this shirt?” Everyone was screaming, so she divided the arena in half and said, “Someone on one of these sides is going to get this. Let me hear this side! Now let’s hear this side!”
One lucky fan got to go home with a new shirt compliments of The Band Perry.
Next up was The Band Perry’s most recent release, “Postcard From Paris,” which led into “If I Die Young” followed by the chorus of fun.’s hit “We Are Young.” Audience members sang along at the top of their lungs. Such a cool song!
The Band Perry ended with a short two-song encore finishing with “You Lie.” All three of the band members generated a lot of energy and it resonated into the crowd. It made the anticipation for Brad Paisley’s show that much more exciting.
As the final act of the concert started, we saw a huge outline of a guitar on an even bigger screen behind the band. Then an outline of Brad Paisley appeared to the right of the guitar. The two became one and the song “Camouflage” started up.
The people went wild!! Brad Paisley sang another song and then chatted with the audience.
“It’s great to be, like in California, dude,” he said. “Let’s, like go surfing when this is over!” We all laughed about that one!
After “Welcome To The Future” and “Ticks,” Paisley held up a sign reading “We (Heart) Brad” that a lot of people in the audience were holding. Paisley said he loved the sign and joked that he was going to use it the next time he had to go to the airport to pick up Brad Pitt. What a crack-up he is!
Then singer then broke into “This Is Country Music,” handing his guitar to one lucky girl in the front row when the song was finished. How cool is that?!
My favorite part of the conert was when Paisley performed the song “Waitin’ on a Woman” while the music video featuring TV star Andy Griffith played the big screen behind the band. How fitting that song was in light of Griffith’s recent passing. Everyone around me was to be touched by that one!
During “She’s Everything To Me,” Paisley walked out to a small platform in the middle of the audience on floor level and played there. Towards the end of the song, he grabbed someone’s phone and used it to shoot video of himself playing before handing the phone back to the fan. Now there’s a great memory!
At one point, Paisley mentioned that all the members in his band have been with him for 13 years — including San Luis Obispo native Kendal Marcy, who plays keyboards, banjo and mandolin. Who knew that we had one of our own up there?
The concert also featured a couple surprise appearances.
Kimberly Perry substituted for Allison Krause during “Whiskey Lullaby.” Everyone really liked that! She did a great job. Then, when Paisley did “Remind Me,” a projected image of Carrie Underwood showed up on stage.
Paisley closed the concert with the song “Water.”
When the song was almost over, he climbed up on a platform on the left side of the screen, on which an image of a swimming pool could be seen. He dropped his guitar into the imaginary pool, where it seemed to sink to the bottom, then jumped in the “water” and pretended to swim across the stage. The crowd went wild.
For an encore, Paisley sang “American Saturday Night” and “Alcohol.” During “Alcohol.” The Band Perry and Easton Corbin came back on stage and went around shaking hands with the fans in the front rows. Lucky them!
That was one of the best concerts I have been to in a while.
Brad Paisley really knows how to put on a show. Other artists can really take notes from him on how entertaining an audience is done!
Brad Paisley photo by Brittany App, courtesy of the California Mid-State Fair.
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