BOISE — Country music megastar Garth Brooks came to Boise for two sold-out concerts Friday and Saturday evenings at Boise State University’s Albertsons Stadium.
On Friday afternoon, Brooks held a press conference fielding questions from regional and local reporters -– then did a one-on-one interview with 6 On Your Side’s Don Nelson and this reporter.
Here are some excerpts from both:
ON WHAT FANS CAN EXPECT AT HIS BOISE CONCERTS.
What we decided to do on this tour was … to have the crew open one show a year. This is the city.
If you guys have ever seen road touring acts, the guitar tech that brings your guitar out to you can play one-thousand times better than you can. The guy that’s adjusting your mike, can sing one-thousand times better than you can. So know that the guy’s that’s rigging this place, is a phenomenal guitar player; the guy that’s shooting camera, is an amazing drummer. So the crew is actually playing tonight before (the lead act.)
When you talk about people you want to play for, you want to play for people that it’s the easiest (thing for them to afford) a ticket -- and you want to play for the people who worked their asses off twice as hard to get that ticket. This concert is going to be fun.
ON PERFORMING WITH COUNTRY MUSIC GIANT BLAKE SHELTON. (Brooks and Shelton premiered their new song “Dive Bar” together Friday)
The nicest guy on the planet is Blake Shelton. This guy has said “yes” to everything (as far as performing with me). Sweetest guy. He’s the best guy on the planet. No ego whatsoever. He’s talented. Beautiful.
I saw Blake on the ACMs (the American Country Music Awards show) doing “God’s Country” —- his current number one single. And there was just something in his face. (I thought): I don’t even know this cat. He was raised about forty miles from where I was raised in Oklahoma. So I called him up and I said, “Hey, man. I don’t know if you ever think about (performing a duet with me)” And he said, “Hell, yeah! I’m in!”
So we chose to premiere (the song) here in Boise because time worked out that way. It was the only place that Blake could make it.
ON COMING BACK TO BOISE (the BSU concert is the first time Brooks has played in Boise in more than twenty years)
The greatest compliment, I think, that you can pay a city is to not come here for the first time, but to come here because you’ve been here before.
I’m glad we’re here because this is a spot we missed on our Comeback Tour. That’s why it’s going to be exciting. It’s going to be loud. It’s going to be fun. So we’re really, really looking forward to this because of the way this area has always supported us.
ON PLAYING A COLLEGE STAGE VERSUS A LARGER STADIUM
Understand we play both college and professional stages. It’s exactly like the sport. College shows run a little slower. We’ll get a lot more music in in the colleges because it’s a lot more diverse. (On the professional stages), we just go it, hit it, and try to run as fast as we can. For me, college towns are my sentimental favorite. When you play a college, you kind of settle into the community and become a part of it. It’s cool.
WHO HAS BEEN YOUR INSPIRATION?
You never met my mom and dad, did you? (laughs) I was the last of six kids. I always thought -– and this isn’t a statement of humbleness, it’s a statement of honesty –- I always thought we were lucky. I just felt really grateful that (success) has happened -- and now, this long in my career, I feel even more grateful every day.
It’s not politically correct right now to tell people what your Higher Power is. Mine’s God and Christ. That’s where it’s at. Because, if you think that you’re the smartest thing that’s living on this planet, we’re all in trouble, right? You gotta surround yourself with people that you love, that love you, who’s gonna be honest with you. That’s hard to find.
My mom and dad still live in a lot of people. My mom and dad were (my) best heroes and my worst critics. So that’s what inspires me. I’m carrying their name.
To watch the raw, unedited version of Brook's press conference -- and our one-on-one interview --