Hannah and I went to the Keith Urban concert last night with her friend Olivia and her mom, Lisa. I really like Keith Urban but after last night, I might possibly be in love with the man.
The show opened with Keith unceremoniously stepping onstage singing "Once in a Lifetime". From there he segued into all his hits and then some; Keith's quite the accomplished guitarist and most of the songs included some sort of guitar solo. To say I was blown away by the man's finesse is an undertatement. His guitar skills and his vocals were spot on, and better than that, he went out of his way to showcase each of his musicians and recognize them before his "hometown" crowd. After a few upbeat songs, he moved down a long runway to a smaller stage nearer us and did a couple of slower numbers. Best of all, he noticed a sign a young girl had made in the audience which read "Don't let another day go by without a hug from Keith!" so he invited her onstage for her hug. I didn't think she was going to let go--and Keith apparently didn't either because he laughingly had a stool brought up for her while he and his band went on to the next song. Engaging and down to earth, he kept the show going non-stop for two plus hours, even doing a spectacular turn on a piano with just his rich voice.
The encore, though...that's when the show got totally fun! At 11:15, Keith and his band reappeared onstage. Keith laughingly had the entire arena do a "cell phone wave"---the lights were turned out and we did the wave with the lights from our cell phones. It was hilarious! As he said, we paid all that money and then we got to be the show. Then he announced that he had no intentions of going anywhere, especially since his home was so close by! After one very long set of Steve Miller's "The Joker", which showcased every member of his band, Keith told us he was pulling Martina McBride out from backstage to sing with him. This is where his talent really stood out for me; it was obvious between the quiet conversation the two shared that he and the band hadn't played her song "Broken Wing" before, but with just a bit of coaching, he did it as well as her regular band. Keith also made it a point to dedicate his newest song "I Think I Got It Right This Time" to his wife Nicole, who unfortunately couldn't be there (though of course we all spent time looking around to see if she had slipped in).
Rocking, rolling, soft and strong, fun and engaging, this is hands-down one of the best concerts I've ever been to. When Keith finally quit around midnight, I found myself wanting it to go on and on, despite the fact that I'm usually dead on Friday nights. I could've stayed through several more hours! This man is a true entertainer and left no doubt that he's all about the music. If you get a chance, go. I'm a fan for life now.