By Amanda Cunningham, Rock At Night London
Venue: Eventim Apollo, London–April 22, 2016
Currently in full swing with his Somewhere On A Beach tour, Dierks hit London’s Eventim Apollo on Friday 22nd April 2016. I was there to shoot the gig, but also as a fan. I’ve been listening to Dierks since seeing him perform at the C2C London in 2014. Since the lay-out of the venue was not ideal, I made my choice to shoot photos through the crowd, after all, the audience was a big part of each frame, and this country rock singer knows how to pull them in! Opening the evening with the high energy number, ‘Up on the Ridge’, the bluegrass hit from his 2010 album of the same name, it wasn’t long before the atmosphere built, the pints were held high and a sing-a-long took full pelt!
Dierks blasted out top hits, ‘Free and Easy’, ‘Tip in on Back’, ‘Hold on’, and of course, the ultimate crowd pleaser, ‘Riser’, which was a welcome choice to the London set list, as rumour has it, it had been removed from previous shows! ‘Riser’, in my opinion, is without doubt one of his greatest, self-expressive, trademark hits.
Holding a pint in the air during a break between songs, Dierks gave a salutary ‘Cheers’–and the crowd interacted and responded by doing exactly the same. The night even saw Dierks crowd surf, much to the joy of some grabby ladies at the front! He really does have it all, a handsome man from Missouri, and he’s not doing badly!
‘Drunk on a Plane’ -a great fun hit from the Riser 2014 album–brought the evening to a close. An amazing night of live music, backed by a fantastically tight band and of course, the fans! The fans ranged from age 20-70– such a wide genre of people–interacting with groups of men, couples and single ticket holders, all stating the same, ‘this man is awesome’.
Dierks is a valuable asset to the music industry– a rare authentic individual with monster talent, a family man, and a person who knows how to play his game. I believe, like many people I spoke to that night, if you have not heard of this artist, look him up, play some music, and it won’t be long before you want more.
Up on the Ridge
Free and Easy
Tip It On Back
Am I the Only One
Say You Do
What the Hell Did I Say
I Hold On
Every Mile a Memory
The Running Kind (Merle Haggard cover)
Lot of Leavin’ to do
Somewhere on a Beach
What Was I Thinking’
I’ll Be the Moon
Drunk on a Plane
Dierks Bentley–Eventim Apollo, London–April 22, 2016
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