Blake Shelton NRG Stadium March 19, 2015
It didn't take long for Blake Shelton and his band to slow it down Thursday night, much to the delight of the ladies in the crowd. During his fifth RodeoHouston performance, before serenading the fairer sex, the Oklahoma native had a few words of encouragement for the gentlemen in attendance.
"I'm sure there's other things a lot of you dudes would rather have been doing tonight than sitting in here listening to me sing," he said. "But I want you to know that you did it for the right reasons: you did it because she wanted you to come out here."
The crowd then erupted with cheers and applause as the band launched into "Doin' What She Likes," an ode to the women in our lives who coax us into doing things against our will, only for us to inevitably end up enjoying them.
Clad in a Canadian tuxedo and a flannel button-down, Shelton serenaded a crowd of 75,016 people (official paid attendance) for a little more than an hour Thursday night, blending true country with pop undertones to create a little something for everyone. He played some classics, a few sappier cuts and plenty of radio hits.
Shelton commanded the stage like a veteran. Despite being "nervous as crap," he captivated his adoring fans (and all of their boyfriends) with ease, successfully hiding any anxiety he might have been feeling.
He began the show with "Neon Light," which likened the neon glow of an open bar in the distance to light at the end of the tunnel after a dark relationship. He later called us all a bunch of hillbillies before performing "Hillbilly Bone."
Shelton also thanked the crowd for being so accommodating that he felt comfortable enough to sing "Ol' Red," a song about distracting a male bloodhound with a female coonhound in order to escape a prison.
He sang his latest single, "Lonely Tonight," followed immediately by the first song he ever released, 2001's "Austin." It has been nearly a decade and a half since his debut, and ballads about rekindling passion with an old lover, albeit with slightly different undertones, continue to raise his status.
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Shelton's position in the country-music world has already been established, but Thursday night's performance further cemented his place in many a Houstonian's heart. He'll surely be invited back, even if his wife is performing elsewhere and can't attend.
Personal Bias: His music may be heavily geared toward the fairer sex, but good tunes are good tunes.
Overheard In the Crowd: Plenty of obnoxious people who favored yelling at each other to hearing the music being performed. Seriously, Houston, get your shit together already.
Random Notebook Dump: The University of Houston or Rice should do a study on birthing rates in the greater Houston are 8-10 months after the rodeo. There would probably be some interesting findings.
SET LIST Neon Light All About Tonight Doin' What She Likes Mine Would Be You The More I Drink Ol' Red Hillbilly Bone Sure Be Cool If You Did My Eyes Lonely Tonight Austin Honey Bee God Gave Me You Footloose Boys 'Round Here
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