About a month ago, the phone rings and it is my Auntie Polly. I’m thinking, ‘ oh no – she’s heard TatorTot (her 20 year old son) is flying down to go to Austin for Spring Break and has some motherly advice for me to share with him’. Uhm no. She was calling to remind me of a conversation we had sometime last year about The King of Country Music and a trip to Denver. Which of course, I had completely forgotten about. She had the tickets to GS, and volunteered free shuttle service and lodging if I’d just get my happy rear-end to Denver. Which I did!
So, this past weekend I jumped on a Southwest flight to Denver to spend some time with the Auntie, the Hag, the King, and the Worst Preacher’s Wife Ever. It took what felt like a month of Sundays to get OUT of Love Field. I’ve flown Southwest for 30 years and have NEVER heard them come over the intercom to announce there was a delay due to … how do I put this delicately and politely… lavatory spillage and the need for new carpet. The flight that was supposed to leave at 5:45 p.m. didn’t even board until 6:30 p.m. And then we spent another hour on the plane waiting for a laptop? Yeah, I’m not really sure. All I know is that the flight attendant didn’t charge me for my drink that I had from OKC (Oklahoma City) to Denver. I did learn on the second part of the flight that there is apparently some sort of conspiracy theory about DIA which I plan to investigate. My arrival time was supposed to be 7:50 p.m. MST. It was 10 p.m. by the time we got off the plane. Oiy vey.
The weekend was short, but it was AMAZING! I had a great time visiting with my Aunt, enjoying the mountain air. I’d never been to the Pepsi Center, and like so many large venues, there wasn’t a bad seat in the house. Except apparently the seat taken by the pregnant young woman who was asked to scoot down so my aunt could have the aisle seat. Oh, I didn’t mention my aunt was on crutches due to a broken leg? Yeah, try navigating 20,000+ people with crutches! The event staff were GREAT and even moved her up to the front of the line for the elevator when the concert was over.
What can I possibly say about the concert? We missed Lee Ann Womack but arrived to our seats in time to see the one and only Merle Haggard. I could have left after his show and been completely content. How can you NOT love The Hag? I mean, seriously? He was his typical self and had everyone clapping along and singing. I can’t wait to hear the rest of his new song, Marijuana. I’m still laughing. You probably needed to be there.
Now, I’ve seen George several times. I can’t even tell you how many times though. I can vaguely remember the first concert of his I attended. I was at the end of junior high, beginning of high school. The venue barely held a couple of thousand people and it was standing room and dance floor only. Yep. Can you imagine going to a George Strait concert where you danced all night? The last time I saw George was about 2005-2006 (and well, let’s just say, I had been out of high school for a while by then). To say I was mildly surprised at how excited I got when they brought him to the stage is an UNDERSTATEMENT. I even surprised myself at how excited I was to see him, especially considering I’ve seen him AT least half a dozen times or more!
He kicked off the concert with The Fireman which had everyone on their feet, singing away. He sang everything from Marina Del Rey to Here for a Good Time and a sampling of every decade in between. He also shared a few songs he and Bubba have co-written, including That’s What Breaking Hearts Do. I can only say that George’s onstage demeanor and charisma have definitely improved with age, not to mention that devilish little grin he has! He was engaging with the audience and shared some stories of the songs he had produced and/or written and just made it felt like that 2,000 person concert, not 20,000.
I have to tell you, I think EVERYONE (including myself) was screaming like a teenage girl. Grown men, little old ladies, young kids…all yelling, whoopin’ and hollerin’ for the King of Country Music (if you couldn’t tell in the video above). The majority of people never left their seats no matter how thirsty they were or how bad they needed to go to the restroom – everyone was afraid they might miss THEIR favorite song. While I remember where I was when the majority of his songs were released, I’d forgotten about this one (in the video below). I decided Saturday night, this was going to be my BIG2014 motto!
One of the greatest highlights of the concert was when George, in conjunction with the Military Warriors Support Foundation, honored a wounded warrior for his service and awarded the soldier and his family a NEW HOME (100% mortgage-free)! There was NOT a dry eye in the house!
Whoosh…what a weekend! I’m so glad I went to Denver, not only to see the King but I had a great time visiting with my aunt. I also spent some time with Lonnie (which I’ll share about later this week), and Sunday was able to have lunch with Kevin Weatherby (Save the Cowboy) and Christie Weatherby (The Worst Preacher’s Wife Ever). She is one of my most favorite, real, down-to-earth, non-judgmental, always there with a hug gal pals!
In honor of George’s last tour (and the fact that there are only 7 concerts left and tickets are scarce to them all), I’m offering a small giveaway below! One winner be selected randomly. The lucky winner will be notified by email Monday, April 14, 2014 and will win George Strait’s 5 Classic Albums, which includes such hits as:
- All My Exes Live in Texas
- Marina Del Rey
- Amarillo by Morning
- The Cowboy Rides Away
- The Fireman
I’d love to hear about your favorite George song and the story behind it! Ready, set, comment!
PS. A big shout out and thanks to the pilot on my flight home from Denver to Dallas. Lots of bad weather and I didn’t reach for the barf bag ONCE!