Last night, country music legend Alan Jackson turned in a headlining performance at Musikfest in Bethlehem, PA. Jackson is still touring in support of his nineteenth studio effort The Bluegrass Album. The disc hit #1 on Billboard’s Top Bluegrass Albums and #3 on the Top Country Albums chart. It also came in at #11 overall on the Billboard Too 200. Jackson cemented his legacy long ago, but this album is another great notch in his belt and is a further testament to his legacy.
The two-time Grammy Award winner strolled out onto the Sands Steel Stage in front of a near-capacity crowd that gave him a very warm welcome. He returned the gesture by opening with “Gone Country”, his #1 smash hit from 1994. From there, Jackson proceeded to play a balanced set of hits, covers, and rare gems. He rolled out 19 tracks including fan favorites like “I Don’t Even Know Your Name”, “Little Bitty”, “Who’s Cheatin’ Who”, “Don’t Rock The Jukebox”, “Remember When”, “Chattahoochie”, and many more. Jackson is certainly one of those artists where every song feels like a hit, and you find yourself knowing almost all the lyrics.
Also in the set was the sentimental “Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)”, a beautiful tune written in the wake the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The song has long stood as a reminder of what happened that day, and Jackson penned an amazing tribute to those lost and most closely affected by the tragedy.
Jackson closed out the stellar set with “Where I Come From”, his down-home anthem from his 2000 album When Somebody Loves You. After a brief break, he returned to the stage for an encore. He laid down his signature song “Mercury Blues” to the audience’s delight. Jackson is a seasoned performer with an extensive catalog, and he delivered everything that was expected of him and then some.
Alan Jackson is one of the greatest country music artists of all time. He’s sold over 80 million albums worldwide and recorded 35 #1 hits on the Billboard charts. Throughout his career, Jackson has garnered 2 Grammy Awards, 2 American Music Awards, 16 CMA Awards, 17 ACM awards, and 1 Billboard Music Award. He was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in 2001, and is a member of the prestigious Grand Ole Opry. – by Matt Bishop