Kid Rock and Jamey Johnson – photo by Jessica Blankenship
One word would describe the experience of Kid Rock, Jamey Johnson, and Ty Stone at the KFC Yum Center in Louisville, Kentucky – Explosive. From start to finish, fans were in for a real treat of musical proportions.
The show itself provided a balancing act between country and rock, blending the lines across genres. Detroit native, Ty Stone, opened the show with his own blend of rock influenced by Bob Seger, Bruce Springsteen, and more.
Jamey Johnson provided the deep southern Alabama sound as he sang through his hour long set. Immediately upon the sound of a prison door being shut and the sounds of the guard giving the words to stay out of trouble, the steel guitar of Cowboy Eddie Long brought the crowd to its feet. Johnson and band set up the stage of the perfect honky tonk among thousands of fans in the sold out arena. The set list would include a blend of original tunes, such as “Between Jennings and Jones” and “That Lonesome Song,” as well as cover tunes “Set Em Up Joe” and “Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way.” The immediate reaction to the crowd singing to “In Color” proved that Kentucky loves this outlaw singer and he’s treated them well with great performances. At the end, it was fitting that the Montgomery native sings “I Saw the Light” by Hank Williams.
It wasn’t long that the crowd would soon learn the History of Rock – specifically Kid Rock. With a video montage of historical facts, photos, and more, fans would get a highlight of the past 40 years in Kid Rock’s life, who recently turned 40. Immediately from the start, Kid Rock performed like it would have been the last time performing. From the top of the ceiling to the bottom of the floor, fans were standing up, cheering, and singing along note for note. Highlights of the show included “Cowboy” with a swerve to the country direction by throwing in “Good Ole Boys” by Waylon Jennings. (It would be fitting that Kid Rock was sporting a new guitar strap during the show saying Detroit. It was made by Cody Hixon, premier leather craftsman who’s created items for Shooter Jennings, such as a Waylon strap and guitar.)
Bringing out Jamey Johnson and Cowboy Eddie Long, the trio would excel in a moving presentation of “Only God Knows Why.” Soon after, Kid Rock would explode with “Bawitdaba” full of flames, pyro, and more. For the encore, he performed “Rock On” and concluded with “Born Free.” One thing fans learned is that Kid Rock is a natural born entertainer bringing music to a new level.
Jessica Blankenship is the owner and founder of Kentucky Country Music website. The Berea College graduate has been a music journalist and historian for over 20 years. She enjoys providing concert photography, reviews, historical articles, red carpet event coverage, and exclusive interviews of your favorite musicians. Jessica is proud to be a Kentucky Colonel and alumni of the FFA and 4-H Clubs. In 2018, she was named one of Laurel County’s Ten Under 40 Award Recipients. In 2019, she was a member of the Inaugural class of BRIGHT Kentucky as part of Leadership Kentucky. She has been featured on the Kentucky Music Preview podcast, Overtones radio show, WFKY Nashville News Roundup, KET, and more. Beyond music, she enjoys traveling, helping her community, collecting gnomes, and Volkswagens.