Country superstar Alan Jackson returned to Abbotsford on Tuesday night for a good time.
The music legend provided fans with an intimate concert, offering insight into his life and songwriting ideas. With 35 No. 1 country singles, fans were treated to 25 years of hits which included everything from his debut song “Here in the Real World” to “Chattahoochee,” “Pop a Top,” and “Five O’Clock Somewhere.”
Cheering fans counted down with a clock on large video screens to bring Jackson on stage. His silhouette appeared behind a white curtain, which dropped as he kicked off the show with “Good Time.”
“It’s good to see you all tonight. It’s a nice crowd here,” said Jackson following his opening performance at the Abbotsford Centre.
“People love real country music, so that’s what we’re going to play tonight. I know it’s only a Tuesday night, but y’all feel like a Friday-night crowd.”
With steel guitar and fiddle woven into every song, Jackson showed the audience his true country roots. He took fans on a musical journey through his career hits, which included “Livin’ on Love,” “Summertime Blues,” “Who’s Cheatin’ Who,” “Little Bitty,” “Don’t Rock the Jukebox,” and “Drive,” a song he wrote for his dad. While singing “Country Boy,” Jackson also acknowledged local fans by switching the lyrics to “I’ll take you for a ride up city streets, down British Columbia country roads.”
Halfway through the show, Jackson took a moment to introduce his band members “that are hotter than Georgia asphalt,” while sitting down on a wooden stool with his guitar in the middle of the stage.
“I’ve been so lucky,” he told the audience, before breaking into “So You Don’t Have to Love Me Anymore,” a ballad from his last album. “Canada has been so nice to me. I thank you all for all the support.”
Jackson then performed a song recorded with the Zac Brown Band, “As She’s Walking Away.” He closed his set with the hit “Where I Come From,” which featured a video montage of Abbotsford playing on the multi-screen backdrop while he performed. Fans cheered loudly when images of Castle Fun Park, Townhall Public House, Tim Hortons, Essendene Avenue, Finnegan’s Pub, and logos of local sports teams appeared on the screens.
After Jackson left the stage, the crowd continued to cheer until he returned to close the night with a cover of “Mercury Blues.” In the middle of the song, he signed several autographs for fans in front of the stage who lifted up everything from shirts and posters to cowboy hats and boots.
Hot off their Grand Ole Opry debut, One More Girl opened the show with their powerful and classic country vocals. Siblings Britt and Carly McKillip from Maple Ridge performed a variety of their own hits like “Fall Like That,” “Tumblin’ Tears,” “Misery Loves Company,” “Maybe,” “Love Like Mine” and their new single “Drunk Heart.” The duo also entertained the crowd with a few covers including Matraca Berg’s “Back in the Saddle” and Patty Loveless’ “I Try to Think About Elvis.”