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2014 CMA Music Festival – Friday (Podcast 262)

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    Posted on 7/14/2014

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Tom Thompson with Fans

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Tom Thompson with Fans

    As the Concert Blast coverage of the 2014 CMA Music Festival continues, this podcast is focused on the activities from Friday. Mike Arnold and Tom Thompson headed downtown for the first act of the day, which was Craig Morgan on the Riverfront Park stage at 10am! Later in the day helper Will Perry joined in. The coverage ended as Blake Shelton said goodnight from the Stadium stage at 12:30am. That’s over 14 hours of walking, waiting, talking, and snapping pics of many artists, fans, and others. Friday’s coverage included (in order); Craig Morgan, Will Hoge, Holly Tucker (contestant from The Voice), Trace “the rib-whisperer” Arnold (not in the podcast), Mike Wolfe (from American Pickers), Hunter Hayes (surprise acoustic show). Then they covered the stadium concerts of (in order); Travis Tritt, Eric Church, The Band Perry, Jason Aldean, Miranda Lambert, and Blake Shelton. What an exhausting day and night, but with a lot of fun! Enjoy listening to the 262nd audio podcast and/or reading the blog written by Mike Arnold.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Craig Morgan

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Craig Morgan

    Written by Mike Arnold
    DAYTIME EVENTS
    CRAIG MORGAN
    Tom Thompson and I arrived at Riverfront Park in downtown Nashville, TN right after Craig Morgan started his set of high energy, crowd participating country rock music. I had never seen him in concert before, but was told by many friends how good he was. Craig had a large crowd of about 6,000 fans who knew his songs, especially his hit “Red-Neck Yacht Club”. Craig also added clips of classic rock songs into his songs. He also covered the famous Steve Miller Band song, “The Joker” as well as one of Justin Timberlake songs (that he learned from his child). At one point in the show he left the stage and went through the crowd still singing every note while taking pics with fans and signing autographs… A Fun Show!

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Will Hoge

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Will Hoge

    WILL HOGE
    Will Hoge is another artist I’ve never seen, but many of my have. Will has been one of Nashville’s rockers for years and now he’s being pushed to country radio, which really doesn’t make since, but we’ll take it! Will was performing at the stage setup outside the Bridgestone Arena. Tom and I walked up in the middle of his set to enjoy a few songs. Will has a lot of energy and very strong vocals, but on this particular performance he didn’t seem very friendly to the approximate 1,500 fans in attendance. His set was filled with electric rock along with an occasional acoustic number.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Trace "Rib Whisperer" Arnold

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Trace "Rib Whisperer" Arnold

    THE HISTORY CHANNEL AREA
    TRACE “The Rib-Whisperer” ARNOLD
    We knew time was getting close to our scheduled interviews with Mike Wolfe of the History Channel TV show, American Pickers, and also with Trace Arnold (a famous barbeque chef traveling with the History Channel bringing along his tractor trailer converted into a nice size barbeque pit and grill. We first met with Trace for a video interview (coming soon). We spoke with Trace while he prepared our lunch on the grill. He prepared hot wings (mild and spicy) along with delicious quesadillas on his grill using his unique blend of spices (on the market)! Did I mention Delicious? The spicy wings were dangerous, but Tom Thompson was determined to eat them… or tried too… he warned us!

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Holly Tucker

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Holly Tucker

    HOLLY TUCKER (The Voice contestant)
    While we waited for Mike Wolfe to complete his meet and greets with the country music fans that had been lined up for a long time, I saw someone singing on a small stage in the corner of the lot. I thought she looked familiar to me and then she mentioned from the stage that she was Holly Tucker a former contestant on the hit TV show, The Voice. Holly came over and talked with us a little between sets and discussed her experience on the popular TV show. Holly mentioned that she was on Team Blake and the mentor that he used with her was Sheryl Crow. She said it was a great experience. I asked her about the editors cutting out parts of the non-live portion of the show and she replied that most of the edits were due to the profanity that Blake Shelton used. Although very few people stopped to notice her, she and her acoustic band sounded great… and they performed all day long while trying to sell CDs of her music.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Mike Wolfe (American Pickers)

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Mike Wolfe (American Pickers)

    MIKE WOLFE (American Pickers),
    It was time to talk with Mike Wolfe of the TV show American Pickers. We went to meet with Mike in their secure back lot tent for a video interview. He was full of fun and laughter. Mike and I first met in December 2012 at The Who concert in Nashville (we sat on the same row). We discussed that night, my band (Mike Arnold & the Music City Rockers), Trace Arnold’s cooking and his grill truck, the American Pickers TV show and how Mike, Frank, and Danielle all met. We currently have the video interview posted on our website as a Webisode.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Hunter Hayes

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Hunter Hayes

    HUNTER HAYES (surprise acoustic set)
    As we left the History Channel lot, we decided to head to the convention center to walk around and see the various meet and greets and booths. We were also seeking out a place to charge our phones! As we were walking over to the Convention Center, we noticed a large group of people (about 2,000) outside the Schermerhorn concert venue (built for the Nashville Symphony). Once we walked up to see what was going on, we noticed Hunter Hayes was performing with his band in an acoustic style. The crowd was really into it. This was a surprise concert that popped up through social media. This always happens throughout the day time during the CMA Music Fest. We were there long enough to see his last two songs. It was a lot of fun with the energetic Hunter Hayes and this excited crowd!

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Travis Tritt

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Travis Tritt

    STADIUM CONCERTS
    TRAVIS TRITT
    Now that we went through the daytime events, it is now time to gear up our energy for the nightly stadium shows. We headed over to the stadium in time to catch the National Anthem and the opening act, Travis Tritt. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Travis in concert and we were very excited to see the Georgia guitar slinger pick and sing his hits once again. Unfortunately he didn’t have a very long set. He started with the rockin’ “Put Some Drive In Your Country” and followed with “It’s A Great Day To Be Alive” (in which he claimed was his anthem), “Modern Day Bonnie And Clyde”, and “T.R.O.U.B.L.E.” We were disappointed by the time allotment they let him play (about 20 min.) and the fact that he didn’t perform “Here’s A Quarter, Call Someone Who Cares” (Unacceptable!).

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Eric Church

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Eric Church

    ERIC CHURCH
    Here’s another act we were ready to see. We’ve followed Eric Church since he began headlining clubs in the Nashville area. We were first introduced to Eric as the opening act for Bob Seger and had the privilege to interview him after his set. That is when we learned that Eric and his tour crew listens to Concert Blast while traveling on the road. We didn’t believe them until they began to tell us about some of our shows. WOW!  Eric took the stage in a different persona than we were used to seeing. He didn’t have his signature cap on and he began with a slow start of his new song, “The Outsiders” followed by “Creepin’”. He continued his show with, “Give Me Back My Hometown” and “Cold One”. He closed the set with a high energy rock song, being joined by singer/guitarist Lizzy Hale, the leader of the hard rock band Halestorm, “That’s Damn Rock and Roll”. Lizzy has a great set of pipes, looks great, and can play lead guitar with the best of them, but what in the world is she doing performing at the CMA Music Fest? We were very disappointed in Eric’s set list… and so were the ones we spoke with in the crowd. He could have been great like he had been in the past few years, but he left out crowd favorites and he also didn’t try to energize the crowd.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Kimberly Perry of The Band Perry

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Kimberly Perry of The Band Perry

    THE BAND PERRY
    Now here’s an energetic band that every artist in the music field can learn from. Every note and every move that Kimberly Perry makes is made with passion! This is the most energetic band in music, not only the country music genre. Kimberly and her brothers leave every bit of energy on stage. They really must collapse once they get to their dressing room after a performance. The Perry siblings took the stage with “Done” and continued with “You Lie”, “Chainsaw”, and “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely”. The next song is what changed their life and family (according to Kimberly). She sang the opening title line and the crowd of approximately 70,000 fans sang the rest of the chorus of “If I Die Young”. The Band Perry continued with the song and let the fans sing again to close out the tune. Right when you think that their set is over, the band kicked into high gear with, “You Better Dig Two”…. Incredible performance!

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Jason Aldean

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Jason Aldean

    JASON ALDEAN
    The energy of the CMA Music Fest continued with the introduction of Jason Aldean. Jason is now considered that latest superstar in country music as he has been selling out stadiums across the country. Jason didn’t waste anytime to getting the party started with his hit, “My Kinda Party”. The loud CMA Fest fans showed their appreciation by loud screams throughout his rock n’ country set. He followed up with “Take A Little Ride”. Jason mentioned that he was from Georgia and mentioned he was about to bring out a guest that made music which inspired him to continue to follow his country music dream. He announced Travis Tritt which came out playing guitar and sharing vocals on “Homesick”. Jason followed up with more favorites; “Dirt Road Anthem”, “When She Says Baby”, and closed the set with “She’s Country”. What A Band! What A Set List! The only thing missing was “Big Green Tractor“.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Miranda Lambert with guest Carrie Underwood

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Miranda Lambert with guest Carrie Underwood

    MIRANDA LAMBERT
    We’ve covered Miranda Lambert since she first stepped on the CMA Music Fest Stadium stage several years ago. Miranda has always put on an energetic show and it’s always a little different each year. This year she shocked us by her looks. Miranda had loss weight, trimmed up, and firmed up. She is now looking the best we’ve ever seen her… Ever! Nice job personal trainer! As usual Miranda put on her country rock set wit lots of energy. She started with a crowd favorite, “Fastest Girl In Town” and continued with “Mama’s Broken Heart”, “Priscilla”, “Automatic”, “Little Red Wagon”, and “White Liar”, with all the Miranda fans singing along. That was nice, but then the stage lights went dim and some extra microphones were set out. We all thought it was going to be the Pistol Annies coming out to sing a couple of numbers, but it was much larger than that, it was Carrie Underwood who came out to dance and sing along with Miranda during the song, “Somethin’ Bad”. It was almost like they were trying to out perform each other… and we loved it! The best part of her set was she didn’t show us her red-neck side! In the past she always reminded us how she was a shotgun shooting, chicken fried steak eating red-neck… Thank you for sparing us from the details! I would had loved to “Kerosene” in the set list, but she had a nice set anyway.

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Blake Shelton

    2014 CMA Music Festival - Blake Shelton

    BLAKE SHELTON
    Here’s a performer, or lack of one (oopps, did I say that out loud?), that has made it to super-stardom through his television appearances on The Voice, and speaking his mind. The problem is, sometimes is mind isn’t very sober and there’s no telling what he will post on Twitter. Although Blake has won several Entertainer of the Year awards, I don’t see it (always standing in front of a microphone with an acoustic guitar). He’s also won Male Vocalist of the Year multiple times, but his voice is just so-so to me. His cockiness really bothers me. I know he can be funny at times, but when someone has an attitude of thinking he’s always right, I have a problem with it… not to mention the profanity that spews out of his mouth from time to time. Blake’s set contained mainly of slower ballads as he started with, “Doing What She Likes”, followed by “My Eyes”, and “Sure Be Cool If You Did”. He went into “Austin”, which the large crowd sang along at times. Blake Shelton closed his set with “Boys Round Here” with the fans dancing. I have to hand it to him that he kept the majority of the crowd in the stadium until the very end of the night. He does produce good tunes, but not a big entertainer.

    RECAP
    The night was fun with Will Perry believing that Blake Shelton had the best performance of the night (that boy needs a doctor!) followed by The Band Perry. Tom Thompson and I agreed that The Band Perry were the best of the night followed by Jason Aldean and Miranda Lambert. Tom also thought that Blake Shelton put on a good performance. We all agreed that the biggest disappointments were Eric Church followed by Travis Tritt. Will brought up the fact that the photo pit crew had their work cut out for them, but they did a great job handling all the photographers and fans taking pics. Stay tune… there’s two more days to go!
    Written by Mike Arnold


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