Dierks Bentley/Randy Houser/Cam/Tucker Beathard (MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre - Tampa, FL) - 7/16/16

Tag: Country

By: John Sutherland

When you get a chance to see a great artist like Dierks Bentley, you don’t miss the show. With Someone who has had a string of 14 #1 singles, you know your in for a night of great music. Dierks rolled into town with his SOMEWHERE ON A BEACH TOUR playing to a packed crowd at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre in Tampa.

I arrived just as new artist opener Cam was hitting the stage with her shorts and snickers, she came off as a cross over, more pop artist, than country. But this cute little lady proved she’s no flash in the pan, looking like a young Faith Hill, she took over the stage in full force. As her set rolled on, she pushed her voice with a more country signature sound all her own, rolling out her hits like “May Day” and “Burning House.” Just as she was in the middle of “Burning House,” lightning struck just outside the theater. But being the professional Cam is, she finished the song and wrapped up her set. Just after Cam finished her set the rain came down and soaked all the Lawn Seats. The promoter then asked in the Lawn Section to come in out of the rain and lightning for safety, causing hordes of soaked fans to find whatever seats they could find. Most of these wound up in the GA PIT area to give our next artist Randy Houser a packed in crowd.

Once Randy Houser took to the stage, he came off looking more like a Def Leppard show than country. Randy started off his set with a video being played on the screen in back of him starring the man himself. Houser got the crowd going with his hits like “Fired Up,” and had them singing along with “Boots On“ and “How Country Feels.” Houser showed off his powerhouse vocals on “Like A Cowboy” and finished his set with “Running Out Of Midnight” and “Chasing Down For A Good Time.” With a show like I just saw, my guess is you’ll see Randy Houser as a headliner soon.

Next up was the AZ born and bred country boy himself, Mr Dierks Bentley. I first saw Dierks Bentley back in 2003 as an opener for George Strait and have been a fan every since.

After the roadies removed Housers elaborate metal stage, I thought what does Dierks have in-store for us now? As the curtain dropped revealing an even larger stage with a diamond shaped video screen, I realized it wasn’t a fancy light show; it was all about the music and that’s just what the fans got and more...

Finally the house lights went down and Dierks took the stage with a bit of Bluegrass flavor rolled into “Up On The Ridge.” The crowd started singing along with “Free and Easy.” He started up the party mood of the night as he pulled a fan out of the audience and did a beer shot with, then went into, “Tip It On Back.” Dierks then went into one of the new ones from his current release BLACK with “What The Hell Did I Say.” His set list of hits rolled on with “Hold On” and “Every Mile a Memory,” then he put up a picture of Jake his recently passed dog.

He then played “Black,” the title track from the new release. Kept hoping Elle would make an appearance and he would sing “It's Different For Girls,” but it never happened, instead he gave the fans and even closer feel as he made his way out into the audience. Stopping for selfies along the way to arrive at a mini stage set up in the middle of the covered seats.

He called up Cam and Randy Houser for a rousing version of the Eagles classic tune “Take it Easy.” Being a veteran myself, I was proud when he paid tribute to the troops with “Freedom”.

Finally he returned to the mainstage to kick up the crowd with “Somewhere On A Beach,” “What The Hell Was I Thinking” and “5150.” Dierks ended his set with “Sideways,” which he showed a lot more of his light setup. He returned for just one encore of “Drunk On A Plane,” which had Dierks and his band swaying all over the stage, and Dierks himself dressed as a pilot, with a large plane front rolling out from the drum riser.

As I walked back to my car in what was more like Mud Fest than a parking lot, I thought, am I gonna find my car and glad I stayed sober for this. But what I really thought was, what a great night of music from a kick ass artist who got us all a little drunk on a plane and took us somewhere on a beach.

For additional photos from the show, please click on the link below:
Dierks Bentley Gallery
Randy Houser Gallery
Cam Gallery
Tucker Beathard Gallery

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