Review: Third Time’s a Charm for Jake Owen at RodeoHouston [PICTURES]
His performance at RodeoHouston on Wednesday night (March 16) wasn't Jake Owen's first rodeo, as the saying goes. The Florida native, who played the event for the third time this year, revels in the tradition of it.
"I know it's a little different; no one is used to playing on a stage that spins," the singer told The Boot prior to his show, adding that if he could participate in any rodeo event without getting hurt, he'd pick to be a rodeo clown. "... I'm always a fan of keeping the history and heritage of something like this, and it makes me proud to play."
Mixed in with RodeoHouston's history and heritage, though, was some new music: Early in the evening, Owen played his latest single, "American Country Love Song," and then introduced "Good Company," a brand-new song from his upcoming album. During the tune, the artist made his way onto the rodeo's dirt track and interacted with as many fans as he could -- shaking hands, doling out high-fives, taking selfies and even giving one fan a pretty big hug.
The new music didn't end there, however: After "Good Company," Owen launched into "Real Life," staying on the dirt and continuing his lap around the arena. While the '90s-inspired tune made it into Owen's RodeoHouston setlist, the country star reveals that the song won't be on his upcoming new album.
"["American Country Love Song"] fit more in line with the kind of songs I've released before. "Real Life" was a bit of an outside-the-box kind of stretch; a lot of people even said that, and it was intentional, but I noticed I didn't get the [same] reception for that song," Owen explains. "... So I kind of wanted to get back to what everybody was kind of expecting from me."
After "Real Life," Owen jumped back onstage and remarked about how many people came out on a Wednesday night to see him. He thanked the crowd and rolled into "Alone With You," which got the audience swaying in their seats with their phone lights in the air.
Guitar in hand, Owen told the audience, "Every time I play a rodeo, I like to pay a little tribute." As the opening notes of George Strait's "I Can Still Make Cheyenne" came through the speakers, the crowd gave a thunderous applause; about halfway through the song, Owen asked them if he should continue -- a question that was met with a resounding yes.
Owen capped off his set with "Eight Second Ride," "Beachin'" -- which fit in well with his tropical island-themed stage decor -- and "Barefoot Blue Jean Night."
"... I'm excited because of the momentum of ["American Country Love Song"] and the excitement that everyone has for it. It really builds up a foundation and excitement for what's next," Owen notes. "I've got a lot of good songs behind it."
RodeoHouston 2016, which runs throughout March, offers a star-studded concert lineup, including Keith Urban, Brad Paisley and more. Florida Georgia Line will take the stage on Thursday night (March 17).
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