Concert Reviews

Lonestar Mixes Hits and Covers at Dusty Armadillo

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It’s great to see country artists like Lonestar back on the road playing highly energetic shows to large crowds like they did this past Saturday (Sept. 8) at the Dusty Armadillo in Rootstown. It’s too easy to overlook many of the country bands from 90’s and early 2000’s due to lack of airplay these days. However, these artists were extremely influential and paved the way for many of today’s top country artists.

When you attend a Lonestar concert you would expect an evening of nothing but the hits. After 20+ years in the business, more than 20 hit singles and over 10 millions records sold, you know you are likely gong to be singing along to almost everyone of the songs they play during the evening. What you may not expect is how well they also play other bands’ hit songs!

Lead vocalist Richie McDonald has one of the most recognizable voices in country music. He along with band mates Michael Britt (lead guitar), Dan Sams (keyboards and guitar) and Kevin Rainwater (drums) plus touring members Robbie Cheuvront (bass) and Jeremy Moyers (steel guitar), delivered a 90-minute set of music that demonstrated both their amazing range of songwriting, as well as their musicianship.

Starting with their hit, “What About Now,” the band kept the crowd singing along to almost every song they played. Other chart toppers included, “With Me,” “Tequila Talkin’,” “Walking In Memphis,” “My Front Porch Looking In,” “Mr. Mom” and “No News.” They closed the show with their mega-hit song, “Amazed.” Packing in about 20 songs during the show, Lonestar was able to play almost all of their hits.

Plus, they did something the crowd was not expecting; they showed their musical roots versatility by playing some of their favorite hits from other artists. McDonald told the crowd that early in their career before they had any hit songs, they would spend half of the night covering songs of other artists. While it is not uncommon to see some arena country artists performing a rock song during their show, Lonestar took it a step further and integrated some classic rocks hits throughout the night.

The highlight of the show had to be their mix of cover songs that they played for the encore. They started with a rocking version of Pink Floyd’s, “Another Brick In The Wall Part 2” that got everyone singing and yelling the chorus of “Hey teachers, leave those kids alone.” Sams then surprised the crowd by performing “Rappers Delight,” while the band demonstrated their love for funk music. Closing out the encore was “Come Sail Away” by Styx and “Life in the Fast Lane” by the Eagles.

It’s clear that Lonestar enjoys giving all for their fans and their show at the Dusty Armadillo was a great chance to see one of country’s top bands of the last 20 years show off their love for delivering a memorable evening of hit songs and top musicianship. Do yourself a favor and don’t miss Lonestar the next time they come to the area on December 21 with Phil Vassar on The Not So Silent Night Tour at the Canton Palace Theatre.

Lonestar at Dusty Armadillo (9.8.18) – Photos by Rod Flauhaus

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