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Kenny Chesney 109,207 Fans Rocked in Boston for 1.25 Million Fans Played To

Kenny Chesney Closes Out No Shoes Nation 2013–

109,207 Fans Rocked in Boston for 1.25 Million Fans Played To

With an a cappella “Whatever makes you feel like a rock star” and one
crashing downbeat, Kenny Chesney’s second night at Gillette Stadium and
final No Shoes Nation show took off like a bobsled, slamming through
four songs including the gold certified “Pirate Flag” before he took a
breath. Both nights, the crowd of 109,207 was on its feet, singing along
with the 8-time Entertainer of the Year’s two hour-plus set.

“There’s energy, and then there’s energy,” an exhausted
Chesney said, coming offstage the second night. “The fans in Boston have
always been very, very special to us. These were our 10th and 11th
shows at Gillette; every year, it just gets more intense.”

To celebrate the milestone, the Kraft family had a Super
Bowl-style banner hung permanently near an end zone to commemorate the
naming of the No Shoes Nation in 2012. The blue and white vertical flag
rippled in the wind as Chesney and his band blazed through a 27 song set
that included guest appearances from tourmates Kasey Musgraves on “Come
Over,” the Eli Young Band on “Take It Easy” and Eric Church for the
current single “When I See The Bar,” which the Luttrell, Tennessean told
the crowd, “There’s a radio version but we’re going to do the album
version” and dedicated the final verse to his many friends who shared
his coming of age in the Virgin Islands.

“It’s an incredible life,” Chesney says. “Looking over
and seeing all those faces, it was like ‘When I See This Bar’ was
happening right there on stage right… and having Eric sing it with me,
a guy who knows what it means to punch it out in a little dive bar with
nobody there, well, that’s everything that song is! And everybody’s
been there.”

Being the end of tour, there were several “guests” of
unlikely origin. NoShoesRadio.com’s Mark Tamburino free-rapped “Blister
in the Sun,” while production steward Robin Majors blew some tasty harp
on the set closing “She Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy.” Beyond a spot-on
cover of “The Fireman,” Chesney evoked early U2 overtones on the outro
of “Come Over” and the Dave Matthews Band on his reggae-tinged
“Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven.”

But it was the hushed “Happy On the Hey Now,” considered
to be the emotional center of Life On A Rock, Chesney’s 7th #1
Billboard Top 200 Albums debut, that brought almost 55,000 fans to a
hush. Never played in concert, it was a starkly acoustic debut for the
song written about living in the moment, the sudden loss of a dear
friend and the preciousness of what is shared with friends.

“I was a little nervous about doing a song so quiet and
so personal in a venue that big,” Chesney said. “But so many of the
people who were part of that song were there… I knew those fans were
just as much a part of my life, and I wasn’t going to see them again
until 2015… and I wanted something to bind us all together. It was a
risk, and when I saw all the lighters and cell phones with flames aloft,
I knew it was the right decision.”

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