Poets & Pirates Tour Review: Kenny Chesney at AT&T Park, June 8, 2008

You don’t get to be a multiple “Entertainer of the Year” award winner for nothing, and the Poets & Pirates tour, which came to San Francisco’s AT&T Park on June 8 did not disappoint! When you’re Kenny Chesney, you can bring along Luke Bryan, Gary Allan, Leann Rhimes and Brooks & Dunn (Not to mention special appearances by Steve Miller and Sammy Hagar!!!) and you know you have something special. On this night, the 70,000+ in attendance did not leave unsatisfied!!

All My Friends Say

Luke Bryan: All My Friends Say

Watchin' Airplanes

Gary Allan: Watchin

Forget the Internet search for the Kenny Chesney set list, or the Brooks & Dunn set list. With these acts, you can be sure that no matter what songs they play, you are in for a special evening. June 8 at AT&T Park will long go down in Bay Area history as one of the greatest nights ever in country music.

First things first: my award for best cooler of the day goes to the kid on Caltrain who used the motor oil box because “it keeps the beer cold”. Haven’t heard that one so I’ll have to take your word for it. I’ve got to say that the train was far more enjoyable than usual. I mean granted you always get your fun, but yesterday, it was an interesting group of people, especially in our car at the front of the train. Drinking, drinking and more drinking until we got to the stadium.

Can't Fight the Moonlight

Leann Rhimes

We got to AT&T about 2:30 p.m. following a quick stop at Subway for a few $5 footlongs. Can’t see paying $7 for a hot dog inside right? Outside we were greeted by members of 95.3 KRTY and 95.7 The Wolf who are the local country stations in the Bay Area. We picked up our souvenir tour shirts at the concession stand and made our way to our seats just in time to see the Bell Brothers. They were involved in the MySpace “Next Big Star” contest and performed four songs. Not bad for the opening act of the show. Loved their song “Yard Sale” about taking your former loved ones things and selling them off! We’ve all been there I’m sure.

Luke Bryan followed up. Until this show, I never knew that he wrote Billy Currington’s “Good Directions” if only he had played that last night! He played a standard set list and closed with his trademark “All My Friend’s Say” (Which by the way is playing on KRTY right now) and Country Man. He puts on a great show and really gets the crowd into it.

Gary Allan came on next. He is an amazing live performer and he has a great set list. He kicked off the show with “Watching Airplanes”, a favorite of mine as my daughter loves to point out everytime she sees an airplane and won’t stop until you acknowledge her. His set was filled with classic hits and new cuts from his latest album. Songs About Rain, Smoke Rings in the Dark, A Feelin’ Like That, Life Ain’t Always Beautiful and the touching Best I Ever Had were scattered throughout the set and got the crowd ready for the rest of the show.

Brooks & Dunn

Brooks & Dunn

As it got towards 6:30, Leann Rhimes took the stage. She had a long, silver dress on which was very eye catching to the crowd and got quite a few whistles and hollers from the men (and a few women as well). “Nothin’ Better to Do”, the first single from her new album Family kicked things off and got the crowd to their feet. She follwed up with Coyote Ugly’s “Can’t Fight the Moonlight”, “Big Deal” and other of her greatest hits. She took it down a bit later with “Blue” and “How Do I Live” and even brought in some Janis Joplin. It was fun to end the set with the classic Cheap Trick song “I Want You to Want Me” which was a crowd favorite and a great sing along. By this time she had thrown a SF Giants jersey on which of course was a great play on the crowd. Leann has a decent set list but needed to play “Because I Can (One Way Ticket). I mean come on, the video was filmed in San Francisco.

It took a while for the set change so my wife ran to the bathroom and concession stands. Unfortunately this did not go as planned!!! She came back to her seat after she found out that AT&T Park had lost all water and the toilets throughout the stadium were backing up and beginning to overflow!!! They also didn’t have drinks anymore at the concession stands unless you wanted bottled beer. We looked out the gates and saw good ol Rotor Rooter fast at work but they didn’t get the problem fixed before the concert concluded at a little after 11:30. I’m sure you can read about this online on a local news publication.

Anyways, she got back to our seats just in time for Brooks & Dunn to kick off their set list with “You Can’t Take the Honky Tonk Out of the Girl” which brought the crowd to their feet. Other classic hits followed including “Neon Moon”, “My Maria”, Red Dirt Road” and “Ain’t Nothing About You” and songs from the new album “Put a Girl In It” and “Proud of the House we Built”.

"Only in America"

The most moving moment of the show would be when during “Only in America”, Brooks & Dunn brought members of our armed forces out to salute the crowd during the final chorus’ and the crowd went wild. Streamers of red, white and blue filled the lower bowl of the stadium and the crowd was electric! They came back for an encore of “Believe” which was much slower than anything played all night and finished with the timeless classic “Boot Scootin’ Boogie”. Nice! The crowd loved it and there was line dancing in the aisles at AT&T Park.

Oh, a quick side note here. So the girls in front of us met Chesney before the show! They showed us pictures of him on their boat which he mentioned during the show! He signed each of their shirts and he even signed their boat! Totally awesome!

Kenny Chesney

Kenny Chesney

The lights came on for about 25 minutes as the crew prepared for Kenny Chesney. When the lights went out, the intensity in the crowd began to build and build. By this time, everyone down on the field were standing on their seats cheering and clapping. After 6+ hours, it was time for the main event!

Chesney did not disappoint in any way during this show. He came up through an elevated platform in the middle of the field and led off with “Live Those Songs”. The crowd was crazy and Chesney was playing off everything the audience had. He followed up with “Summertime”, “Keg in the Closet” and “Beer in Mexico”. The crowd was eating out of his hand by this time.

Chesney can sure work a crowd and the women love him (a few of the men did too!) A great rendition of “Big Star” followed and the crowd really got into “No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems” which led to a rash of bras being thrown at Chesney which ended up in a carefully organized pile on the rear of the stage near the drum kit. The guys joined in all over the crowd by taking their shirts off! Just a note, some of you should NOT do this!

“Shiftwork” followed and this song angered the guy next to me who I had been talking to for the entire show. As a huge George Strait fan, he was hoping Strait would be there. When Chesney announced “Ladies and gentlemen, George Strait!” he and the rest of the crowd went nuts. This was soon followed by a “got you guys!!!”. We should have known that Strait wouldn’t actually be there but for just a moment…

Kenny with Steve Miller

Kenny with Steve Miller

“Living in Fast Forward”, “Young” and “Never Wanted Nothing More” were up next then the special guest began to show up. Chesney announced that he had a San Francisco favorite to bring out on stage and it was STEVE MILLER!!!! WOW!!! The crowd was really excited when they kicked into a great version of the classic “The Joker”. By this time the “toking” behind us had begun and there was no doubt that this was going on all over AT&T Park. They continued with “Rockin Me” which also was a wonderful sing-a-long. While Steve Miller has gotten older, he’s still rockin!!!

Chesney played the new single off the album and also had a duet with Kix Brooks with “You’re Gonna Miss Me When I’m Gone” and a crowd favorite “Back Where I Come From”. The crowd loved that Chesney had lots of pictures of San Francisco during this song and even talked about his bike ride across the Golden Gate Bridge which he said was one of the greatest experiences of his life.

More Kenny

More Kenny

The show began to come to a close following this but not before one more guest: The Red Rocker himself, Rock & Roll Hall of Famer SAMMY HAGAR!!! They did a great rendition of “I’ll Fall in Love Again” and really got the crowd going during the final song of the set “I Can’t Drive 55”. In all my years of going to Giants games, I don’t know of AT&T Park ever being so loud!

The crowd chanted for an encore and Chesney of course obliged. “She Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy” came on which always is enjoyed by all! When it comes to live songs, this is one which Chesney brings out all of his game. It can be dragged on forever.

The crowd wanted more but by this time, there was nothing left to give. We had been at AT&T for over 8 hours and it was finally time to go home. There was nothing bad I could say at all about this show other than the problem that AT&T Park had with their sewer system.

This is NOT a tour to miss. Kenny Chesney lived up to his billing as the “Entertainer of the Year” and there was not one bad act on the bill. It seems that everytime you leave a show, you fell that it was the best concert you ever saw. I can say that I have been to a lot of shows and there is no doubt in my mind that this is a top 3 concert of all time for me.

The Red Rocker Sammy Hagar!

The Red Rocker Sammy Hagar!

I cannot wait for the show to come back around to the Bay Area again. Bravo to all of the acts and especially and to the crowd! This was one wild night in San Francisco! Pictures are up on my MySpace page.

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3 Comments on “Poets & Pirates Tour Review: Kenny Chesney at AT&T Park, June 8, 2008”

  1. Margie Says:

    All I can say is you need to check out one of Keith Urban’s tours without his shows with kenny…then you will see what the hype is! I’ve seen many of Kenny’s shows that all seemed alike and choreographed. I’ve even heard his fans admit that. Keith’s are always different. Believe me you won’t be disappointed. Keith holds back when he’s touring with Kenny…an hour just doesn’t show Keith’s greatness as an entertainer.

  2. Crysis 2 Aimbot Says:

    Then yet again, the opposite could often be true. – Golf is a good walk spoiled. – Mark Twain 1835 – 1910

  3. now this is an well written page. thx for taking the time to upload this. bookmarked to my favorites

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