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Review: Brad Paisley, Blake Shelton power through heavy rains at the 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre in Tampa

10

September

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Friday's Brad Paisley concert at the 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre was supposed to be a blockbuster country showcase. But thanks to the heavy storms that hit Tampa late Friday afternoon, fans at the Gary only got half of what they paid for.

A side stage featuring up-and-coming talents Sunny Sweeney, JaneDear Girls and Edens Edge had to be shuttered (though Sweeney and Edens Edge got to play mini sets on the mainstage), meaning the concert started about 2-3 hours later than expected. But when it did, about 15,500 fans got a taste of pure country hunkitude. As Sean Daly writes:

Paisley is a country king, no argument here. And his two-hour headlining set revealed him to be a wee Eddie Van Halen in a curled cowboy hat, a guitar geek with a penchant for catchy songs that range from good novelty (the hilariously sexy Ticks) to bad novelty (the tedious Working on a Tan). His intricately shredded solos were fast, furious and frequent, a vaguely Latin playing style that started to sound samey after so many licks. That said, Paisley was a workhorse entertainer and a seemingly good guy.

But truth be told, the night belonged to the bill's second-biggest act, Blake Shelton, who might not be a country king yet, but the 6-foot-5er is definitely storming the castle. ... For all the stone-cold-country hits Shelton played — including the Gothic menace of Ol' Red —- he also bowed to his crossover audience with cheeky but oomphy covers of disco classic Play That Funky Music, J. Geils' 80s flirtation Centerfold and, in an awesomely bizarro moment, Bobby Brown's My Prerogative.

Click here for Sean's full concert review. And get more of Luis Santana's concert photos of Blake Shelton and Brad Paisley after the jump.

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[Last modified: Saturday, September 10, 2011 11:48am]

    

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