So, when country music star Country Music Star was standing in SoFi Stadium at Super Bowl in February he couldn’t help but wonder when his "Here And Now” tour would arrive at the venue on July 23,
Chesney is a passionate football fan and one of the top-selling artists in this century, regardless of his music genre. It was an amalgamation of all things, LA being a new stadium and those teams. It was great watching the game, and being together. Do not underestimate the power of being together, especially on a big evening -- everyone was missing that more than they realized. It was intense, but in the best possible way.
This is the kind of atmosphere Chesney expects to create when he opens his tour at Tampa's Raymond James Stadium on April 23. Although his concerts attract large crowds at NFL stadiums, it has been three decades since the last time that most cities hosted him tour due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The ambitious tour will include 18 performances at 16 NFL stadiums and 2 MLB arenas as well as a few smaller venues.
He says that he believes the SoFi stop will be "just as intense and dynamic" in a different way. However, he could still experience the same atmosphere at any one of the other 39 locations. "We were meant to be in the opening show (in 2021), and that is a wonderful thing. The world stopped. We're now going to pick it up, and if you know the Southern California crowd that packed the Rose Bowl, it will be crazy."
Although Chesney hasn’t toured, Chesney has been very busy recording and writing music with the intention of returning to the road to share his music. It was difficult for artists to cancel 2020 and 2021 concerts. However, Chesney insists that this year's shows won't be restricted musically, in staging, or most importantly, with attendance.
In Tampa, organizers offered more seats many times. That is a show that was on sale 932 days prior to Chesney taking the stage
"When we decided not to go out last year it was because there were too few tickets -- and I didn’t want to be in that position of people who’d held onto their seats, being told, "Yeah. Well, you can’t come," he said. "No Shoes Nation is a cohesive community; it's part of the fun to see the people who love these songs coming together. They can be heard in parking lots tailgating and lined up for opening the lots. I was reluctant to leave until everyone could participate. We could not get everyone in, but we could all be there.
"As long I've waited, they've also waited that long. So, no No Shoes Nationer left behind. Do you want to rock along with us? C'mon down. We're here. We're ready. Let's see what volume we can get and how much fun we have. And how many memories can we make each night.
He hasn't been there in a while with so many of his fans. It feels like a celebration when their voices are joined by his. However, these concerts are also enlivened when they take place in a public space. The sound of thunder at the end of almost every song is reminiscent to the cheers that erupt when the home team scores.
This environment does not change no matter where Chesney is located, from Florida to Foxboro to Minneapolis to the Meadowlands.
It wasn't. It lasted for two-plus decades.
Chesney says, "You do what it takes." He will be joined on tour by Old Dominion, Carly Pearce and Dan and Shay. "When you don't have the ability to play for your fans -- who are really just friends at that point -- that's a lot why we call them No Shoes Nation -- I still look to music. Although we do have some songs in the show, it was frustrating not to be able to play them. So, putting together the set list was difficult. It was worth it to work on the new songs and to get feedback from people about the album. It was incredible to see how people responded to songs like "Here And Now." But it also showed me that people really listen to these albums and use the music to help them through the times when they are not together.
"I didn't think this music would do that, I can tell you that." It has, and I am so grateful it has.