This is virtually impossible to believe: Garth Brooks had never paid his dues playing for tip jars on Nashville’s Lower Broadway.
That is, until Monday night (Feb. 5).
That’s when Brooks finally showed up at Layla’s — one of many tiny honky-tonks on Broadway — for an invite-only show to unofficially kick off this year’s Country Radio Seminar.
Brooks told the industry crowd that he’d take their requests, but only if they could share with the room why the song was so important to them. When someone requested “That Summer,” Brooks flipped the script and explained his connection to the song about a young man and his sexual awakening with an older lover who was his boss during a summer job. But all Brooks really divulged was that when he was a junior in high school, he had a relationship with an older woman. A senior in high school.
His unrehearsed set list included “Two of a Kind Working on a Full House,” “Calling Baton Rouge,” “Much Too Young (To Feel This Damn Old),” “To Make You Feel My Love,” “If Tomorrow Never Comes,” “Ask Me How I Know,” “We Shall Be Free,” “Standing Outside the Fire,” “The River,” “Friends in Low Places,” and “Ain’t Going Down (Til the Sun Comes Up).”
Brooks also popped up at Jason Aldean’s CRS kick-off event, and together they performed Aldean’s”My Kinda Party” and Brooks’ “Friends in Low Places.”