Country at the Convo: Currington rocks DeKalb

By Deanna Frances

Country artists Chase Rice, Brett Eldredge and Billy Currington brought their A game to the We Are Tonight tour Thursday at the Convocation Center.

Rice, an artist who blends pop beats and bass lines with country melodies and lyrics, opened the show. He did an excellent job getting the crowd involved by dancing and reaching out to people in the audience, and he riled up listeners with his energetic music. Rice was entertaining with his songs, “Cruise” and “Ready Set Roll.”

Academy of Country Music New Artist of the Year nominee Eldredge performed next. That man can sing. His “Beat of the Music” and “Don’t Ya” had me singing along.

It was the first time I’d seen Eldredge perform, and I wouldn’t mind watching a few more of his shows. My favorite song was his beautiful, soulful performance of “One Mississippi.” Eldredge was more than ready to impress his home state fans.

“I’m from Illinois, so it’s exciting to be performing for my Illinois fans,” Eldredge said. “It’s an amazing privilege to be able to perform as a part of Billy’s tour. He has some very loyal fans, and now some of those fans are my fans, too.”

Eldredge’s performance showed off his excitement and amazing voice. After his Thursday concert, I’ll be voting for him as New Artist of the Year.

Currington ended the show with a one-hour set of his popular songs. I was impressed with Currington’s musical talent. His fun and energetic performances of “Hey Girl,” “We Are Tonight” and “Pretty Good at Drinkin’ Beer” were highlights of the concert.

Currington’s set never had a dull moment, and I would love to see him come back to DeKalb soon.

Fans loudly cheered the artists back on stage for an encore, and Currington had a few surprises up his sleeve. The country star played Garth Brooks’ “Friends in Low Places” and invited Rice and Eldredge to join him. After pulling out a classic Brooks track, Currington sang Bruno Mars’ “Treasure” and Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.” This change of genre kept the crowd dancing.

Currington’s last song was his own hit, “Good Directions,” which was a great ending to the night.