A Word from Cheryl:

Thank you for visiting my Concert Review Blog. I have enjoyed attending, photographing and writing about a variety of concerts over the past several years. I hope that my reviews and photos have made you feel like you were right there with me.

At this time in my life I've taken a step back, looked at what’s truly important and have begun to prioritize my time, energy and resources.

I retired from nursing in 2012 and was then able to be with my aging father, who later passed away in June, 2013.

My family is growing dramatically! We now have eight grandchildren and I take every opportunity to be available to help when needed. I also make sure I carve out plenty of time for my husband so that he knows how important he is to me.

Because of this I don't attend many concerts anymore. I try to be selective in choosing a show and do my best to relax and enjoy the experience. I no longer stress about getting the perfect photo or remembering some occurrence so I can write about it.

If you want to view a collection of some of my favorite photos from the past several years you may find them here:
Cheryl's Pearls Photos - Concerts

Thanks again for visiting my site.

May God Bless,

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Shine All Night Tour in Fairfax, VA


My friends and I kept checking the Patriot Center website to make sure Martina McBride and Trace Adkins were still going to perform January 31st despite the heavy snowfall over the weekend.  We were not disappointed.  It was by far one of the more entertaining concerts I’ve been to in a while.

Opening for Trace and Martina was Sarah Buxton with singer/songwriter/guitarist Jedd Hughes.  Sarah has a single out now called “Outside My Window” which she & Jedd performed together along with Jedd’s song “Big Blue Sky”.  Both songs will be on Sarah’s upcoming album set to be released February 23rd.  Sarah also sang “Stupid Boy,” a song she wrote that was made popular when Keith Urban recorded it.

Trace Adkins started his set with “I Got My Game On” followed by “Swing” and “Songs About Me” then slowed things down with “I Wanna Feel Something” and the emotional “All I Ask For Anymore,” (which garnered two Grammy nominations for Trace).  He joked about not being at the Grammy’s this year (which were taking place the same time as the concert) and said he’d already “checked that ‘freak show’ off his bucket list.”  He figured someone would let him know if he won then yelled back stage to see if he’d gotten any phone calls.  Sorry Trace.

It surprises me how easily Trace can move from a tender song like “You’re Gonna Miss This” to a funny, tongue-in-cheek song such as “Marry For Money” and have us in tears of fond remembrance one minute or hoots of laughter the next.  He has a unique gift.

The highlight of Trace’s performance for me was when members of the Howard University Gospel Choir joined him on stage and together they sang “Muddy Water” as well as Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground.”  Trace’s lower register is amazing, you can almost feel the walls shake when he hits those bass notes.

Martina McBride may be petite but she has an enormous voice.  No one sings “Broken Wing” quite like Martina, who received a standing ovation for her rendition.  “Happy Girl,” “Wild Angels,” and Independence Day,” were other crowd favorites.  Getting down on her knees, Martina gave a riveting performance of “I’m Trying” – a song about a woman who won’t give up on her man struggling against alcoholism.

At one point in the performance Martina climbed onto a large crescent moon and rode it over the audience to a satellite stage.  When she stepped off she quipped, “I guess you can all say you’ve officially been mooned by Martina McBride.”  She then proceeded to sing “Love’s the Only House” followed by “Blessed.”  As she made her way back to the main stage through the crowd she sang “This One’s For The Girls” and shook hands with many fans along her path.

Martina said she’s frequently been asked about her “unusual” pairing with Trace Adkins.  She replied they have several things in common.  Trace sings about a Badonkadonk, “And I have a Badonkadonk,” she said.  “Trace also sings the song about ‘One Hot Momma’ and well….” Martina left us to conclude that she fits the bill nicely.

Martina is a class act and has proven herself over the years with timeless hits.  As she sang “Whatever You Say” I noticed some tears in her eyes and couldn’t help but compare those words with careers of artists today in regard to ticket sales and fan support.  “I know you can hear me, but I’m not sure you’re listening. I hear what you’re sayin, but there’s something missin’. Whether I go, whether I stay, Right now depends on whatever you say.”
  I say with enthusiasm – STAY!


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