KEITH URBAN DAZZLES D.C.
I was looking forward to celebrating my birthday with my girlfriends as we drove into D.C. to see Sugarland and Keith Urban perform at the Verizon Center on August 20th. We had just sat down to dinner when I received a text from a radio station I occasionally share photos with. I was to meet them at Will Call.
I left thinking I’d be right back but I was very wrong. The radio station surprised me with a pass to Keith Urban’s Backstage Experience and said I had to hurry if I was going to make it! I hustled after Brian, one of the DJs, texting my friends along the way, apologizing for leaving them with my half eaten dinner and an unpaid bill. They told me not to worry, to go ahead and have fun.
The Backstage Experience consists of a group of about 60-70 people gathered together for a BBQ Dinner, a group photo with Keith, a video presentation of the making of the tour, and a brief acoustic performance by Keith himself. For our acoustic performance Keith played “Jeans On,” a selection from his Golden Road Album requested by a young lady seated up front.
As soon as Keith finished playing another girl asked him to sing “Happy Birthday” for her friend, Lisa. Keith agreed but before he could start, Brian called out from the back where we were standing, “Hey Keith! It’s Cheryl Walker’s birthday too! You need to sing Happy Birthday to Cheryl Walker!” Keith replied, “What… you want first and last names???!!” and Brian said “I’m sure there’re other Cheryls in the room and it’s THIS Cheryl,” pointing to me. With a big grin on his face Keith said, “Oh THAT Cheryl Walker right there? THAT Cheryl?” He then proceeded to sing “Happy Birthday” to us and when he got to our names he sang, “Happy Birthday to Lisa and Cheryl, that Cheryl right there, over there that Cheryl.” It was hilarious and certainly one of the most unforgettable birthdays I’ll have for years to come.
After the Backstage Experience we headed into the arena where Sugarland was already on stage. You would never know Jennifer Nettles had struggled with any type of vocal problems recently. Although when her mic cut off for an extended period of time and I could see Jennifer’s lips moving but there was no sound and I feared the worst. Thankfully it was only a technical problem. Her voice was amazingly strong the rest of the evening and the entire performance was a joy to watch – so energetic and fun.
The crowd erupted when Keith Urban came out singing “Hit the Ground” and indeed he hit the ground running with 2 hours of well paced non-stop entertainment. From his current chart topping singles “Kiss A Girl” and “Sweet Thing” to classic hits “Days Go By” and “Somebody Like You,” Keith held the audience in the palm of his hand. Weaving his spell with uniquely designed guitars (imagine lights and mirrors) Keith’s technique and incredible fret work demonstrated jaw-dropping skill.
Wanting to make this concert enjoyable for fans in every corner of the arena, Keith has employed a unique set of 5 huge hi-def screens that rotate and bring another dimension to his tour. Leaving the stage to get personal with the fans, Keith strolled through the crowd like a modern day minstrel making his way to the satellite stage in the back of the arena to perform a few songs and later into the stands to sing a selection.
This is definitely one concert you don’t want to miss!! Be sure and check Keith Urban's Official Tour schedule (http://www.keithurban.net/tourdates.html) for concert dates and see if he's coming to a city near you!