Brad Paisley Plays to Sold Out Xcel Center in St. Paul Saturday Night [GALLERY + REVIEW]
A little over a week ago Brad Paisley changed the name of his tour from the ‘Camobunga Tour” to the “Virtual Reality Tour”, St. Paul was the third stop on this newly renamed tour, and what a show it was!
The show opened with American Idol winner Scotty McCreery and CMA new artist of the year, The Band Perry, but the majority of the 15,000+ in attendance were there to see country music hit maker Brad Paisley.
The crowd was treated to a virtual performance from a hologram-ed Carrie Underwood on the duet ‘Remind Me’ and a real life appearance from Minneapolis native and Stray Cats guitarist/singer Brian Setzer.
Concert Review by David Drew
This past weekend Brad Paisley brought his tour to the Xcel Engergy Center and if you have seen Brad before, you knew exactly what to expect. You get great guitar solos, you get a heavy dose of humor and a set list of big hits. This show was no exception. Brad opened the show with ‘Camouflage’ , then seamlessly launched into ‘The World’. Actually, Brad didn’t stop to take a breath until 4 songs in, when he set up ‘This Is Country Music’ by explaining that the song was “the ground rules for tonight”.
As usual, Brad brought some terrific production value with him. Big screens with multiple graphics enhanced several songs, including the inclusion of Andy Griffith in the video during ‘Waitin’ On A Woman’. The funniest video of the night was during the early hit ‘Celebrity’, which found a Brad Paisley type figure getting into all kinds of Charlie Sheen type trouble (including flashing in public, locking a woman in a hotel bathroom, etc.). Video also allowed him to introduce his band in a fun way. Brad started to introduce his band in the traditional way, until William Shatner (in Star Trek garb) cut him off on screen and told Brad there was an emergency that he must attend to. The animated video that followed introduced the band as Star Wars and other characters as the band played tightly on stage.
The best video trick of the night came during ‘Remind Me’, when it appeared Carrie Underwood might actually be there in person singing her part. I think some people may have left thinking they really saw Carrie Underwood, but it was just a great video slight of hand.
Musically, Brad and his band sounded great and he, of course, had some great guitar solos. The music highlights for me were an acoustic, slightly shortened version of ‘Letter To Me’ (which is such a well written song I think it should be mandatory listening for every teenager), ‘Then’, ‘Welcome To The Future’ and ‘Working On A Tan’ – made even better with the retro video that played with it.
I didn’t think there was any true letdowns during the show, which was a pain in that I missed the beer sale cutoff because I didn’t walk out of the venue until the end of the show. I thought it was a great show with some nice surprises, such as Kimberly Perry joining him on stage for ‘Whiskey Lullaby’ and Brian Setzer showing up to jam on the two encore numbers (although I was hoping they’d break into a Stray Cats tune!). If you get a chance to see Brad Paisley, I don’t think you’ll leave disappointed. I know I didn’t on this January night.
Here is the set list from January 14th at the Xcel Energy Center:
Camouflage/ The World/ Welcome to the Future/ Ticks/ This Is Country Music/ Waitin on a Woman/ Celebrity (with Scotty McCreery)/ She’s Everything/ Online/ Good Hearted Woman (Waylon & Willie) > Still a Guy/ Then/ Letter to Me/ Mud on the Tires/ Working on a Tan/ Whiskey Lullabye (with the Band Perry)/ Nervous instrumental/ I’m Gonna Miss Her (Fishin Song)/ Remind Me (Carrie Underwood on screen)/ Old Alabama (Alabama on screen)/ Water ENCORE American Saturday Night/ Alcohol (with McCreery, the Band Perry and Brian Setzer)
Were you at the show? Let us know what you thought below in the comments.