Kenny Chesney, who had thousands upon thousands of Houston fans screaming with delight Saturday night at Reliant Stadium, is now taking some heat because of his conduct toward one of those fans after the show.
Or he was. After publishing an article about an unflattering picture taken of the country superstar after the show, in which a man dressed in black sitting next to Chesney flips off the camera, KILT-FM has removed the story and photo from its Web site. You can see the screenshot above.
According to KILT-FM's Foley & Thunder morning show, the fan spied Chesney in a golf cart in the bowels of Reliant after the encore of his "Brothers of the Sun" show with Tim McGraw, which ended about 10:30 p.m. The picture is below:
"Kenny obviously was done with the show and was in no mood to be in any photograph and the guy next to him knew it too," Foley & Thunder co-host Greg Thunder wrote on the station's Web site, in the article that has since been removed. "What we don't know is if our listener yelled something at Kenny first or was just hoping to get a picture."
She got a picture all right. The topic was a big deal on Foley & Thunder Tuesday morning, with opinion overwhelmingly on the side of someone sitting next to an entertainer (and possibly in their employ) not behaving rudely toward one of that entertainer's fans.
Before the article was removed shortly after noon, more than 250 people voted in a poll about the photo (our screenshot at right is from several hours earlier), running about four to one in favor of Chesney not covering his face.
Rocks Off was at the show and enjoyed it quite a bit, more than we thought we would, in fact. As much running as Chesney did, no doubt he was exhausted. It might not have been the best time for the fan to take his picture, but then again, when else is she going to get that close to him?
The 44-year-old Chesney is known for his warm relationship with his fans, often doing autograph signings and meet-and-greet events before his concerts. We don't know whether or not he did one Saturday.
In June, a man was escorted out of the Nashville Brothers of the Sun show after an LP Stadium security guard accused him of "purposely trying to impersonate a celebrity." Nathan Blankenship, a Nashville-area schoolteacher who does look a lot like the superstar, later joked about changing his Twitter name to "@notkennychesney" and was given a refund for his $200 ticket.
Rocks Off doubts this will damage Chesney's relationship with KILT much, especially now. So far the station has played three of his songs since Rocks Off tuned in this morning, including latest single and current No. 1 Billboard Country Song "Come Over" twice. Apparently he's got some clout over there.
A spokesman from Shore Fire Media, Chesney's PR agency, would not talk on the record, and said he did not know if the other man in the golf cart was part of Chesney's personal security team or someone hired by an outside agency. Later he said Shore Fire had no comment on the matter whatsoever.
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Should be an interesting morning show tomorrow, if they even mention the whole thing at all. We're guessing not.
Rocks Off left a message for KILT Music Director Mark Adams earlier this afternoon. If he gets back to us, we'll update the story.