by Matt Bishop | March 7, 2016
Last night, country music superstar LeAnn Rimes performed sweet set of hit songs at the grand opening of SugarHouse Casino‘s Event Center. The event center is the latest edition to SugarHouse Casino’s recent expansions, which also include a poker room, a steakhouse, and more. The new concert venue gives fans a big arena feel in an intimate theater setting, and a two-time Grammy Award winner was a perfect way to kick things off.
Rimes was the first to set foot on the SugarHouse stage, and she did not disappoint. In front of a sold out crowd, she performed a 15-song set that included her biggest hits and rare gems. Throughout the show, she interacted with fans thanks to the venue’s intimate setting.
After starting with “Commitment” and “Nothin’ Better To Do,” LeAnn wasted no time dropping arguably her two biggest hits – “One Way Ticket” and “How Do I Live” back-to-back. The crowd was floored, as the renditions were as flawless as they were timeless. She also treated fans to a rare medley of songs by one of her musical heroes. “I’ve been compared to this next woman since I was a baby,” Rimes said. “I think I came out of the womb singing Patsy Cline.” The crowed laughed along with her.
Rimes truly poured her heart and soul into the performance. So much so that two tracks came with a disclaimer. “If I start crying during these next two songs, it’s ok,” Rimes stated. “I’m just feeling emotional tonight.” She proceeded to play heartwrenchers “What Have I Done” and “Probably,” which led to roaring ovations of support from the fans.
LeAnn cranked things up a notch with “Can’t Fight The Moonlight.” She preluded, “I’m sure there’s some bars here to dance on later, and this song will get you in the mood for that!” Then, she boldly covered Johnny Cash’s 1957 classic “Folsom Prison Blues,” which featured blistering solos from her two guitarists. People were stomping there feet, singing along, and even dancing in the aisles. “I know you’re here to listen,” LeAnn said after the dual burners, “but I love when people get into it.” One loud fan yelled in reply, “We love you!” The rest of the crowd shared the sentiment.
Rimes calmed things down once again to end her set with “What I Cannot Change.” “This is one of my favorite songs,” she stated. After overwhelming demand from the crowd, she returned for her encore – “Love Is An Army” – wrapped simply in a warm piano accompaniment. “I recorded this song when I was 18 and I haven’t done it since.”
LeAnn Rimes is one of the most successful solo artists of her generation. Throughout her young but illustrious career, Rimes has sold over 37 million records worldwide. She’s garnered a CMA Award, 3 ACM Awards, 12 Billboard Music Awards, and 2 Grammy Awards. Her two Grammy Wins for Best New Artist and Best Female Country Vocal Performance came in 1997 at the tender age of 14, making Rimes the youngest artist to win a Grammy Award.
Rimes’ last studio effort, 2013’s Spitfire, hit #9 on Billboard Top Country Albums and #3 on the UK Country Albums Chart. The disc produced four singles. Rimes, who holds the holidays in high regard, released her third Christmas album – Today Is Christmas – last October and often tours during the Christmas season performing holiday classics and originals. In addition to her stellar music career, LeAnn is a wife and stepmother who has penned two novels and two children’s books. In 2009, she was awarded The Academy of Country Music’s Humanitarian Award.