Jason Aldean Goes Back to His Roots for Pandora’s Backroads Show in Nashville
Fans who attended the Pandora Presents: Backroads show on Tuesday night (Nov. 27) experienced a rare treat: seeing Jason Aldean in an intimate setting.
Aldean is the most-streamed country artist in Pandora history, and to celebrate and say thanks to fans who helped him cross the threshold, Aldean delivered an arena-level performance for a comparatively small crowd at Nashville's Marathon Music Works (capacity just over 1K).
It's not often fans get to see an artist of Aldean's caliber perform in such an close-knit setting, but the show allowed them the unique opportunity to get up-close-and-personal with a superstar who's accustomed to headlining sold-out arenas. The special performance was a step back in time for Aldean, who sharpened his live skills during the early days of his career performing in bars, beginning at the young age of 14.
"I feel like I’m at a bar again. This feels like home right now," he told an appreciative crowd.
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The reigning ACM Entertainer of the Year relied mainly on the steadfast hits that transformed him into a country music superstar, offering a solid hour-and-a-half set that had all of the high energy of a rock show. He satiated fans' musical appetites with favorites like “Any Ol’ Barstool,” sobering “The Truth” and career-defining staple, “Amarillo Sky.” He took us all to “Fly Over States” and the rollicking "Hicktown,” the latter of which received one of the strongest reactions of the night, along with equally beloved “Big Green Tractor.” He kicked the energy up a notch with “Tattoos on This Town” and “Night Train,” and the crowd couldn't resist dancing along to “When She Says Baby.”
After professing that he likes to "get the slow sh-- out of the way" as a method of ending the show on an energetic note, Aldean stayed true to his word by delivering one power-packed track after another to round out the evening. The crowd had no reservation taking over lead vocals on the lively “Lights Come On,” and the singer kept them fired up with “My Kinda Party” and “Dirt Road Anthem.” He leveled out the upbeat numbers with the soulful “You Make it Easy” and smooth “Burnin' it Down" before confessing that he might need a shot after performing his hip-hop leaning new single "Girl Like You" — one of only a handful of times he’s performed the steamy track live. Fans approved.
Unabashedly sharing his disapproval of encores, Aldean skipped over the standard concert tradition and went right into a set that ended with the fiery “Crazy Town,” an appropriate way to close out an evening dedicated to an artist who did indeed make it in a town full of dreamers while honoring the fans that helped him get there.
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