On Friday night (Oct. 13) live at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena, Chris Stapleton cemented his status as one of music’s greatest talents to emerge from the current decade.
Throughout his two-hour All-American Road Show concert, his voice and blues guitar solos were pure power, emotive and exuded style. But his humanity was what took center stage in his delivery of soul-baring songs from his Grammy-winning album Traveller and 2016’s From A Room: Volume 1.
He dedicated “Broken Halos” to the victims of the mass shooting at Las Vegas’ Route 91 Harvest music festival. He covered “Learning to Fly” in tribute to the late Tom Petty (The two artists toured together earlier this year.). During “Fire Away,” Stapleton asked fans to light up the room with their cell phones, “to drown out all the hate in the world.”
He performed new songs “Hard Living” and “Trying to Untangle My Mind” like they were old hits. The songs will be included on From A Room: Volume Two, which lands Dec. 1.
During “Tennessee Whiskey,” Stapleton sang his band introductions like a soul legend. He took time with each introduction, revealing that his bassist J.T. Clure is a cat person, and his drummer Derek Mixon doesn’t like tomatoes (But he’s a fan of tomato-based products.). He said he wouldn’t be anywhere today without his producer and special guest guitarist Dave Cobb (who only travels to play the really big gigs), and his lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely wife and backing vocalist Morgane Stapleton.
For the encore, Stapleton took the stage with Morgane to sing The Steeldrivers’ “Where Rainbows Never Die.”
Throughout the show, Stapleton’s gratitude was contagious. The sold-out audience erupted into thunderous applause every time he said “Thank you,” after a song.
Brent Cobb and Brothers Osborne opened with new arrangements from their respective debuts, Shine On Rainy Day and Pawn Shop.
Cobb’s uncle Dave Wrigley joined him onstage to perform “Country Bound,” the first song Cobb witnessed being written while on a family road trip to Ohio. And the audience shouted lyrics of “American Girl” to the rafters as Cobb delivered his version of the Petty anthem.
John Osborne performed an original arrangement of “Amazing Grace” on guitar as an intro into “21 Summer.” The CMA Award-winning duo also reworked Osborne Brothers’ hit “Rocky Top” into a New Orleans-style, second line jazz. Rising artist and John’s wife Lucie Silvas joined the band onstage to perform “Loving Me Back.” T.J. Osborne called their band’s portion of the show a bucket list moment.
The concert was night one of Stapleton’s two-night headlining debut at the entertainment venue. Night two of Stapleton’s All-American Road Show at the Bridgestone continues tonight (Oct. 14).
Stapleton is set to perform during the 2017 CMT Artists of the Year special, which has been transformed into a night of hope and healing following September’s devastating hurricanes and the massacre at Las Vegas’ Route 91 Harvest music festival.
The 90-minute special premieres live from Nashville on Wednesday (Oct. 18) at 8 p.m. ET.