Kip Moore Leaves NYC Up In Smoke

Kip Moore
CMT’s Up In Smoke Tour
with Charlie Worsham & Sam Hunt
September 25, 2014
Best Buy Theater, New York City

Kip Moore’s mutual love affair with New York City continued this past Thursday night with a show at the Best Buy Theater in the heart of Times Square.  I have been in attendance at the shows he has put on in the Big Apple the past few years, starting with Bowery Ballroom in 2012 and Webster Hall last year.  I have seen him perform in other cities and states, but there is something about the City that brings out the best in him, his band, and the crowds.  This night was no different.

The night kicked off with a stirring performance from Sam Hunt.  He may be an artist with only one radio single so far, but you would not have guessed that from the way the crowd knew basically each of his songs word for word.  Hunt performed songs from his mixtape as well as his upcoming album, to be released next month.  His six song set, highlighted by “Leave the Night On”, “House Party” and “Ex To See” showcased how dominating a performer he is, despite being so early in his career.  His songs are as pop as any artist in the country music genre can be, but also catchy as can be.  The crowd responded to his constant movement and dynamic performance.  I expect Sam Hunt will be around for a long time.

Charlie Worsham was the second opener and provided a less energetic set.  He performed free flowing and technical songs from his album, Rubberband.  I am a huge fan of that album and was really looking forward to seeing him live; however, found myself a bit let down.  However, his musical chops were undeniable as he changed from acoustic to electric guitars and even a banjo at one point.  He seemed to be a bit out of place in the Kip Moore concert crowd as his performance was relaxed and somewhat awkward.  I hope to see Charlie in a different venue or circumstance.  

When it was time for Kip Moore to take the stage, he came out like a bullet out of a gun.  The opening song, “Wild Ones” is what many are expecting to be his next radio single and it is as catchy and bombastic as any song on country radio.  The chorus of this song lets loose something fierce and the crowd with amazing energy responded to the party anthem.  

WILD ONES (Video)



What followed was a twenty-one song set that shifted from party to emotional to nostalgic to romantic.  The song-writing that Kip and his co-writers possess along with the unique raspy delivery that he executes with really separates him from the rest of the younger generation of rising stars in country music.  And Kip performed a bunch of new songs for the hungry crowd as he explained how it has been frustrating for him that a new album has not been released yet.


But if these new songs are any indication, Kip may be on his way to CMA and ACM nominations galore.  “Hearts Desire”, “Backseat”, and “Lipstick” are destined to be radio hits as they are songs with detailed attention to the lyrics while delivered with the passion that is missing from so many of today’s artists.  

The Best Buy Theater became a word for word sing a long on hits such as “Beer Money”, “Dirt Road” and “Something About a Truck”.  However, it was some of his first album’s deeper cuts that were surprisingly the highlights of the night.  “Crazy One More Time”, “Fly Again” and “Everything But You” were performances nothing short of brilliance as he changed up the original recordings of the songs and the crowd almost drowned Kip out as the response was deafening.

Fly Again 
The CMT Up In Smoke Tour is a must see for any fan of country music as Kip Moore truly shows that he is set to become the genre’s next megastar.  The encore of “Faith When I Fall” mashed up with Tom Petty’s “Free Falling” has become a Kip concert staple, but always delivers on the genuineness that I associate him with.  Nothing is forced yet everything is done his own way.  He is not to be labeled an outlaw or in the bro country label, but should be considered a real and true artist.  Not many in the music business deliver with such realness than Kip Moore.  Bowery Ballroom, Webster Hall, Best Buy Theater … what’s next?   Hopefully, a lot more.  

SETLISTS:
Kip Moore

  1. Wild Ones
  2. Crazy One More Time
  3. Baby Break My Heart
  4. What I Do
  5. Reckless
  6. Drive Me Crazy
  7. Beer Money
  8. Up All Night
  9. Dirt Road
  10. Hearts Desire
  11. Everything But You
  12. Separate Ways
  13. Backseat
  14. Fly Again
  15. Come and Get It
  16. Young Love
  17. Hey Pretty Girl
  18. Lipstick
  19. Somethin’ About A Truck
  20. Faith When I’m Falling (ENCORE)
  21. Free Fallin’ (ENCORE – Cover of Tom Petty)  

Charlie Worsham

  1. Rubberband
  2. Could It Be
  3. Microphone To My Heart
  4. Young To See
  5. Love Someone
  6. Be Alone
  7. Trouble Is
  8. Want Me Too 

Sam Hunt

  1. Raised On It
  2. Ex To See
  3. House Party
  4. Take Your Time
  5. Leave The Night On
  6. Break Up In A Small Town  

DIRT ROAD
DRIVE ME CRAZY
HEARTS DESIRE

  

Toby Keith & Kip Moore Throw One Hell of a Party in CT

Toby Keith
Hammer Down Tour
featuring Kip Moore & Drake White
Comcast Theater, Hartford, Connecticut
Sunday, August 25, 2013

Long standing country veteran Toby Keith brought his Hammer Down Tour to Hartford, Connecticut this past Sunday and absolutely blew the roof off of the Comcast Theater.  Joined by country music’s rising star, Kip Moore, and new-comer Drake White, Toby and company put forth one of the most energetic shows I’ve seen this summer. 

 
 
 
I was unfortunately unable to get into the venue in time to see Drake White, but made my way into the pit just before Kip Moore took to the stage.  A huge backdrop with Kip’s back and outstretched arms made for an impressive visual on stage.  Kip appeared on stage with his patented backwards red trucker hat and cut off Rolling Stones t-shirt. 
 
 
 
 
I had previously only seen Kip at smaller club like venues in New York City and was interested to see how he would adapt to a larger venue.  Needless to say, he had absolutely no problem crossing over as he used every inch of the stage and T shaped catwalk, running, jumping, and sweating all over the place. 
 
 
 
Kip mixed in tracks from his critically acclaimed “Up All Night” album, including #1 hits ‘Beer Money’, ‘Hey Pretty Girl’, and ‘Something ‘Bout A Truck’, with a few new impressive tracks off of an upcoming album set to be released in October.  The highlight of his set came when he stripped down, sat on a stool, and performed a beautiful acoustic version of ‘Hey Pretty Girl’.  All the couples in the sold out crowd wrapped their arms around each other and forgot about the otherwise party atmosphere that dominated the night.  It shows the true appeal that Kip Moore has as he can touch upon all aspects of life through his lyrics and infectious delivery. 
 
 
 
Kip Moore Setlist:
  1. Crazy One More Time
  2. What I Do
  3. Reckless
  4. I’m Going Back On South
  5. Beer Money
  6. Fly Again
  7. Drinking, Smoking
  8. Unless Heaven’s Got A Dirt Road
  9. Hey Pretty Girl
  10. Something ‘Bout A Truck
 

 
I must admit I am a long time Toby Keith fan and have seen him live well over twenty-five times.  But there was something different about Toby this time around.  He changed up the setlist to make things a lot more modern (old staples such as ‘I’m Just Talkin’ Bout Tonight’ and ‘You Shouldn’t Kiss Me Like This’ were removed).  And he seemed to genuinely be enjoying himself a lot more on that night as he was more active on stage and extremely demonstrative. 
 
 
 
He came out to a non-single cut, “Haven’t Had A Drink All Day” and pumped right into a bombastic “American Ride” and then a passionate “Made In America”.  He was strutting his stuff all over the stage and was very interactive with the crowd.  In fact, I was in the pit with my good friend, Michael Wilcoxin, who just served our great country overseas in Kuwait.  He was wearing his Army “Greens” and Toby instantly spotted him.  In true Toby Keith fashion, he instantly came over to Mike, gave him a fist pump and even gave his guitar pick to him.  But more on that in a minute …
 
 
 
 
The rest of Toby’s set included mostly high energy hits.  ‘Beer For My Horses’, ‘Who’s Your Daddy’, ‘I Love This Bar’ and ‘Beers Ago’ were just some of the tracks that Toby chose from his extensive catalogue for this summer night.  When it was time for ‘Red Solo Cup’, two enormous inflatable cups appeared on both sides of the stage and the entire crowd whipped out their own solo cups.  Outside of the slower ‘Hope on the Rocks’, Toby kept up a party atmosphere that had everyone singing, smiling, and partying all night long. 
 
 
 
However, anyone that has ever attended a Toby Keith show knows that the highlight of his set and of the night is the beautiful dedication he does for our troops and our country as his encore.  “American Soldier” followed by “Courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue” may be the best encore in country music, period.  And on this night, he pulled my friend Mike as well as some other military members, and even a wounded warrior, on stage to help celebrate the USA. 
 

 
Chants of USA as well as cheers and applause rained down upon the members of the military who were on stage with Toby.  It really was a sight to behold as they instantly became the stars of the night.  Toby even sent them out to the front of the catwalk to receive the ovation that they so deservedly have earned for their sacrifices to keep us free.
 
 
 
In the end, Toby showcased what he truly loves most: supporting our troops, loving our country, and getting people in the mood to party.  As always, he nailed all three with his perfectly executed performance.  His final words before he left the stage with the American Soldiers alongside him were “Never Apologize for Being Patriotic”.  Toby, we never will. 
 
 
 
Toby Keith’s Setlist:
  1. Haven’t Had A Drink All Day
  2. American Ride
  3. Made in America
  4. Beers Ago
  5. Wanna Talk About Me
  6. Whiskey Girl
  7. Ballad of Balad
  8. Hope on the Rocks
  9. God Love Her
  10. Beer for My Horses
  11. Weed with Willie
  12. Get out of My Car
  13. Red Solo Cup
  14. Who’s Your Daddy
  15. Ain’t As Good As I Once Was
  16. I Love This Bar
  17. How Do You Like Me Now
  18. A Little Less Talk
  19. Stranglehold (Ted Nugent Cover)
  20. American Soldier (ENCORE)
  21. Courtesy of the Red, White & Blue (ENCORE)
      
 
 
VIDEOS OF THE VETERANS ON STAGE:
 
 
 

After the show, I was able to catch up with Kip Moore standing outside the entrance.  He was gracious enough to allow a short discussion with me about his upcoming album. He stated he is actually hoping to finish up the final cuts for the project this coming Tuesday. He expects the next single to be out this October and hinted that it might be “Unless Heaven’s Got A Dirt Road”.  He also guaranteed the new songs he played that night (see the above setlist) would be on the album along with a song called “New York City” which he is very excited about.  Furthermore, after some prying he told me he expects the album to be released “on or around January 18th”.  He was very humble during our conversation and seemed to be very excited about the new album.  I expect a huge future for Kip Moore.

Kip Moore at the Bowery Ballroom, NYC

Kip Moore
Bowery Ballroom, NYC
w/ Chase Rice
August 3, 2012

Kip Moore brought his band up from Nashville to the busy streets of New York City as they took to the stage at the Bowery Ballroom on Friday night.  Moore, who is arguably country music’s newest rising star, released his album, “Up All Night” on April 24, 2012.  Before the show began I was able to catch up with Kip and he told me he was “going to rock it tonight”.  Let’s just say, he lived up to those words. 

Chase Rice, a relatively new name on the country circuit kicked off the show with a few acoustic tunes.  Rice is a former runner up on CBS’ “Survivor” during the season set in Nicaragua.  He has a very nice touch in his songwriting and connected with the crowd, despite sitting on a stool the entire time and not having a back-up band.  Songs such as “Only A Country Girl” and “Dirt Road Communion” seemed to resonate with fans and many even knew the words.  He told me after the show that he plans on setting out on Tour in the Fall with Kellie Pickler, among other names.  I look forward to hearing more from him the future

When it was time for Kip Moore to the hit the stage, the Friday Night New York City crowd was amped and ready.  Moore and his band came out swinging with “Crazy One More Time” and his newest single, which is currently #35 and climbing on the Billboard Country Singles Chart, “Beer Money”.  The crowd seemingly knew every word and Moore was full of smiles and energy as he and his talented band pounded out the two album favorites.  He stated to the crowd “man, I can drink with the best of them, but NYC you kicked my ass.  I came crawling back at 4 am last night”. 

Throughout his set, Moore thew in humorous statements in between his songs.  Moore has been dubbed the “Hill-billy Springsteen” for his songwriting style as well as his gravely voice.  This was extremely apparent on a song called “New York City, which he played acoustically.  He apparently had written that day in his hotel room when a “certain feeling overcame him”.  But this intimate song really showcased how much talent he has. 

Amongst numerous party songs that had the crowd enticed throughout, he mixed in a few love and breakup songs.  He talked about the three stages after a break-up before singing about the stages in “Fly Again” and he had all love birds hugging and kissing during the amazing song “Hey Pretty Girl”.  He stated he wrote that song when one of his guitarists told him that his wife was having a baby and they needed to really make it happen at that point.  His statement “we are all designed to find someone who you can go through life with” really resonates during that song.  I personally think that “Hey Pretty Girl” should be his next single. 

Moore was full of anecdotes and commentary on his songs and he told a true story of telling off a record company who wanted to change who he was during “Reckless”.  But the highlight of the night came when he spoke about his old pick-up truck.  He told the crowd his first  truck had 400,000 miles on it with no air conditioner and the windows wouldn’t go down.  But one day his father let him take his truck and … “Something Bout A Truck” was born.  The crowd sang most of the first verse and Moore was happy to let them do it.  A full on sing-a-long ensued and Moore was most active and energetic as he absolutely fed on that energy (see video below).

Moore finished off the flawless set with a cover of Tom Petty’s “Free Falling”.  I was hoping for a Springsteen cover, but no one seemed to mind.  I have been extremely impressed with his first album and was hoping his live performance would live up to my expectations.  That night, he did that and more.  He truly showed me he has the “it” factor that many new artists lack.  I expect we will hear a lot more from Kip Moore in the future. 

 SETLIST

  1. Crazy One More Time
  2. Beer Money
  3. Mary Was the Marrying Kind
  4. Reckless
  5. Good Time Girl
  6. New York City
  7. Fly Again
  8. Motorcycle
  9. Baby Break My Heart
  10. Gunna Be a Big One
  11. Tell Me Where the Party At
  12. Hey Pretty Girl
  13. Something Bout A Truck
  14. Free Falling (Encore: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers Cover)