|Blake Shelton Charms, Connects & Shares with a Delighted Crowd of Thousands at Rock the Rapids!|
by Marie Steffen
Electricity shot through the air in anticipation for Blake Shelton to take the stage, but the crowd would have to wait. Bomshel, who engaged with the crowd in conversation and song, took the stage as the opening act. A highlight was when the group's singer, Kristy Osmunson, took center stage, demonstrating her phenomenal violin talent, in the song "Fiddle." It was official; the crowd was amped up for Shelton!
Blake's very presence, caused the crowd to jump to their feet and erupt in accolades of praise. He opened the show with "It's All About Tonight," a song that went to number one on the Billboard Country chart in 2010. The mesmerized crowd sang along. Shelton fans both longtime and new could appreciate his set list as he followed with popular songs from his career including "Some Beach," "Playboys of the Southwestern World," "Honey Bee," and "Hillbilly Bone."
He gave the crowd an opportunity to laugh and connect with him through stories of his childhood and the influence of music when he was young. Before covering "Play That Funky Music White Boy," he shared how he would hear the tune coming from behind his parents' locked bedroom door.
Blake's charm and charisma comes from a delicate balance of being a down to earth Oklahoma man who made it in a business that allows him to do what he loves-singing. He doesn't pretend to have it all together. People resonate with that. Throughout the evening, Blake shared stories of his family and about his recent marriage to Miranda Lambert, 2010's Female Country Vocalist of the Year.
Winding down the show, Blake changed to a slower pace of songs "Who Are You When I'm Not Looking," "God Gave Me You" - his latest single, and "Nobody But Me." A highlight of the show included Shelton on his acoustic guitar, leading the crowd to a sing along with his early career hit "Austin."
He picked up the energy to send the crowd off in fashion by playing "Ol' Red" for his encore. The crowd was delighted.
Whether young or old, someone who enjoys country music or not, there is no denying the talent and genuine realness of Blake Shelton. That's why people embrace him and his music, and that's why he earned the title of 2010's Male Country Vocalist of the Year!
Marie Steffen is the daughter of local meteorologist Bill Steffen. She works providing intensive, in-home crisis counseling for families on the verge of losing custody of their children. Photos by Paul Jendrasiak.
Published: August 13, 2011
Photos by Paul Jendrasiak:
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