Dierks Bentley took over what he called “the biggest honky-tonk” on Lower Broadway last Friday (Aug. 26), bringing his “Beers On Me Tour” home to Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
After opening sets from rising singer-songwriter Elvie Shane and multi-Platinum BBR artist Dustin Lynch, Bentley exploded onto the stage to his 2003 smash hit “What Was I Thinkin'” after his band set the stage with a dueling guitar battle. The eager audience set the tone, already screaming the lyrics back to him.
“Bridgestone Arena! When I think about this building, the first thing I think about is that it’s home to my favorite hockey team: the Nashville Predators,” Bentley said to the buzzing crowd. “The main thing that I think about, though, is that this is the honky-tonk of Lower Broadway, y’all. It’s the biggest honky-tonk I know on Broadway!” he said with a smile.
“Thank you guys for your faith in us. Thanks for holding onto us for the last few years.”
The decorated entertainer rolled through some of the biggest hits from his nearly 20-year career, including the fiery “Burning Man,” the faith-filled “I Hold On,” the sunshine-soaked “Livin’,” his break-up anthem “Gone,” the sensual “Black,” and more.
Before breaking out into “Woman, Amen,” Bentley made sure to give a shoutout to all the women who have propelled him in his career, listing off over a dozen critical females, including his longtime manager Mary Hilliard Harrington.
Following a high-energy cover of The Charlie Daniels Band’s “The Devil Went Down To Georgia,” the multi-Platinum entertainer brought Shane back out for a rendition of “Bad Angel,” a track from Bentley’s 2010 Up On The Ridge album that originally features Miranda Lambert and Jamey Johnson. Bentley also welcomed Lynch back to the stage to help him perform the tour’s namesake and his most recent No. 1 with Hardy and Breland.
After giving fans a performance of his newest release, “Gold” which was most added at country radio upon its release, Bentley took the opportunity to unplug for a few songs, giving acoustic versions of “Lot Of Leavin’ Left To Do,” “Settle For A Slowdown” and “Bourbon in Kentucky.”
The country superstar also brought out some extra special guests for his hometown show that, ironically, came from his home.
“It’s a Friday night in August, folks. All of my friends are on the road, so I had to go a little closer to the house for tonight. I’m bringing out my daughters.”
With his daughters by his side, Bentley and the girls gave the roaring audience a performance of P!nk’s “All I Know So Far,” fit with all the big notes, though missing the pop icon’s signature silks.
Bentley then kicked things back into high gear, knocking out more of his many hits. After dedicating his inspirational “Riser” to the many nurses and first responders in Nashville, he sang his certified party anthem “Am I The Only One,” as well as “Somewhere On A Beach” and “Free And Easy,” which the audience happily helped him sing. He wrapped with “5-1-5-0” and his iconic “Drunk On A Plane.”
Bentley’s ’90s parody band, The Hot Country Knights, took the stage for the encore, kicking off with their version of Travis Tritt’s “T-R-O-U-B-L-E.” The band, who were decked out in over-the-top ’90s attire, bad wigs and some interesting facial hair, also ripped through a medley of massive ’90s country hits, including “She’s In Love With The Boy,” “Should’ve Been A Cowboy,” “Cowboy Take Me Away,” “Bye Bye,” “The Dance,” “I Hope You Dance,” and more.
The Knights also fired off the first verse and chorus of Shania Twain’s “Man! I Feel Like A Woman!” before the original Bentley returned to the stage, shutting the whole affair down.
To wrap the night’s festivities, Bentley broke out into his high-voltage hit “Sideways” before wishing the Nashville crowd goodnight.
Bentley will take a break from his “Beers On Me Tour” this weekend as he hosts his Seven Peaks Festival in Villa Grove, Colorado over Labor Day weekend (Sept. 2-4). The trek will resume in Montana on Sept. 10-11.
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