Sunday, August 16, 2009

146/365 The amazing Keith Urban

I don't go to many concerts. I usually spend my big-ticket money on Broadway tours and theater performances instead of music concerts.

In my lifetime, I've been to just three of what I would consider "big" concerts. The first, a gift for my sixteenth birthday, was Ricky Martin. Talk about a high-energy concert! Definitely enjoyable.

The second was just last April, when Mom and I saw Michael Buble at Conseco Fieldhouse. A fantastic concert, well worth the ticket.

And now, I can add a third to my list: Keith Urban! The part that's a little sad is the fact that I've been a fan of country music for as long as I can remember, but last night was the first time I've ever attended a country-music concert. I grew up listening to it, my radio alarm has been tuned to WFMS since I was in elementary school, and no matter how much people look down on it, I continue to love it.

Well, if you're going to go, go all out, right? The part that truly made this opportunity unique is the fact that I won these tickets in a radio contest! It wasn't until I got to Will Call to pick them up that I found out where we would be sitting.

Fifteenth row. Awesome!

That meant I had the chance to get some great photos, even if it meant standing up all night long.

Jason Aldean opened the concert. He's a rising star in the industry, with some recent number-one hits.

Many people in the crowd actually bought their tickets to see Jason Aldean, not Keith Urban.

I don't know what's wrong with them, but to each his own, I suppose.

Jason Aldean was good, though not fantastic. I don't think he's headliner material yet, but he certainly has plenty of fans already.

I, on the other hand, have been a fan of Keith Urban's since before he made it big. He's one of the most talented guitarists in country music, he's an excellent singer, and when I buy one of his albums, I'm confident that it's one I'll enjoy listening to from beginning to end.

If I were to name my favorite country artist, he would be it. And that made last night's concert even sweeter.

He -- and his bandmates -- put on a fantastic show. The icing on the cake was the gratitude and appreciation he showed for his fans. He made multiple trips into the audience, and not just quick little jaunts into the fourth row.

He sang one whole song at the front of the grandstand, which started behind a fence past the first 30ish rows of seats. When he got to the mike, the first thing he said, laughing, was, "So, who has the good seats now?"

Through the rest of the concert he made more trips to the far edges of the grandstand, singing for the people on the fringes of the "cheap seats." He spent verses in the middle of the aisle at ground level, where we were, and when a woman fell in the crowd's enthusiasm to get closer, he helped her up and gave her a hug on his way.

The night was fantastic, higher than my expectations could have ever been. And it makes me feel even better about supporting this fantastic artist.

Camera: Canon 40D, 1/125s, f/5.6 at ISO 200 (first photo) and 1/80s, f/4.5 at ISO 1250 (second and third photos), between 7:30 and 11:00 p.m.

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