Garth Brooks returned to Nashville with his world tour this weekend. He kicked off his seven-show run on Saturday and we were lucky enough to catch him on Sunday.
After an exciting countdown, the one and only Brooks appeared on stage. He began with an adrenalized version of “Baby Let’s Lay Down and Dance.” The crowd roared — and they never stopped. “Rodeo” followed.
It’s been 17 years since Brooks announced his retirement and seven years since he performed at Bridgestone Arena for flood relief. Finally, he returned. The icon made his long-overdue return as part of his world tour with Trisha Yearwood. This tour started in Sept. of 2014 and will end right here in Music City.
“Hello, Tennessee,” Brooks shouted to his sold-out audience. “Thanks for letting us bring our music to the home of country music.”
In a single night, Brooks proved two things. First, he was named Entertainer of the Year at the CMA Awards for a reason. Second, the oldies really are the goodies. Brooks devoted most of his time to his 90s hits in seven straight songs, with the only exception being “If Tomorrow Never Comes,” which was released in 1989. Running back-and-forth from each angle of the stage, Brooks led singalongs to songs like “The River,” “Ain’t Goin’ Down” and “Unanswered Prayers.”
Next up — “Ask Me How I Know,” Brooks’ first No. 1 in 10 years.
“You just screamed the new stuff like the old stuff,” he said in appreciation. But he immediately returned to a classic with “The Thunder Rolls” before singing the first verse of Trisha Yearwood’s “In Another’s Eyes,” which the couple completed together on their 12th anniversary.
“The thunder rolls…”
— Nashville Noise (@nashvillenoise) December 11, 2017
Yearwood made the stage her own for the next four songs, which included “XXX’s and OOO’s (An American Girl)” and “Wrong Side of Memphis.” She ended her set with a kiss to Brooks, which aired on the kiss cam that played throughout “She’s In Love With The Boy.”
Brooks wrapped up his set with favorites “Friends in Low Places,” which included the infamous third verse, and “The Dance.”
“This is the place where dreams come true, man. Thank you for my life. Thank you for my dreams. I love you, Nashville.”
Brooks left the stage after playing for approximately two hours, but he wasn’t done yet. His encore performance included requests from fans’ posters, including “To Make You Feel My Love.” Brooks intimately shared the lyrics with Yearwood as if they were the only two in the building. He then handed over the stage for an acoustic version of “Walk Away Joe,” which he said was his “favorite Trisha Yearwood song.”
Artist covers ended the three-hour performance. From the Nitty Gritty Band’s “Fishin’ in the Dark” to Don McLean’s “American Pie,” Brooks left his every ounce of energy on that stage.