Luke Bryan, CMT Go Backstage at Madison Square Garden

Country Star Sold Out the Iconic New York City Arena Twice

As the reigning ACM entertainer of the year, Luke Bryan’s That’s My Kinda Night tour is certainly one to catch. In one of the biggest concerts of his career so far, the superstar took his hit songs and signature dance moves to New York City’s iconic Madison Square Garden.

CMT Hot 20 Countdown ’s Cody Alan caught up with the star just before he took the stage.

“We’re making it happen in New York City,” said the host as Bryan arrived for his interview. “What was your reaction when you found out you had sold out this place in five minutes?”

“Crazy. It’s pretty awesome,” remarked Bryan. “And then the fact that we put another show on sale and sold it out, too. … It’s very surreal to be in downtown New York being from a little [town]. You know, there’s more people in this backstage area than the town I grew up in, so it’s pretty awesome to be here. We’re excited.”

Some of entertainment’s most famous names have thrilled crowds at Madison Square Garden — a fact that didn’t go unnoticed by the singer.

“This place is legendary,” said Alan. “I mean, if New York City had a Grand Ole Opry, this would be it.”

“Oh, no doubt. This is it,” Bryan agreed. “I’m just walking around looking at the pictures on the wall, and I mean there’s Michael Jackson right there, Billy Joel, a picture of Elvis, Sinatra. … ”

“What’s it like to think that your face will be on this wall soon?” asked Alan.

“Well that’s what’s crazy. When I come back in September, it’ll be up here,” Bryan said. “You know, I just feel super blessed as a country guy being accepted into this market, and I hope I can come back for years.”

Helping to kick off each show is Bryan’s pal Lee Brice. The “Parking Lot Party” singer admits much has changed since their CMT on Tour dates together in 2011.

“That was his first headlining thing that he had done, and really that was one of the first actual whole tours that we had been out on,” said Brice. “So it was kind of a first for both of us. And now, I mean, this is what you call headlining right here. Luke is just killing it and this set that he has, he just works so hard and you can tell. It’s already working great and the show’s gonna get nothing but better and better, and I don’t know how it can from here because it’s already so great.”

Newcomer Cole Swindell (“Chillin’ It” ) has also joined the tour, getting crowds amped up and ready for the main show.

“Oh, man, it’s so crazy. This is what I moved to Nashville for,” he said. “I certainly can’t say that I expected to be in Madison Square Garden, but I came to play country music and now I’m getting a chance to do it in front of thousands of people every night, so it’s awesome.”

For more from Luke Bryan’s Madison Square Garden debut, tune in to CMT Hot 20 Countdown this Saturday and Sunday (Feb. 1-2) at 11 a.m. ET/PT.