Anything went when Florida Georgia Line rolled into town

Florida Georgia Line. Photo by Ron Short, Ron Short Photography

Florida Georgia Line. Photo by Ron Short, Ron Short Photography

It was a wild night at First Niagara Pavilion August 15 when Florida Georgia Line rolled into town with their “Anything Goes” tour – and boy did anything go!

While fans might have thought they entered a country show, Florida Georgia Line doesn’t put on a traditional country concert. Their set list is a mixture of their own hits and quite a number of cover songs ranging from Alabama to Wiz Khalifa. Soaring off the success of their country-rap hit with Nelly, “Cruise,” it’s hard to believe Florida Georgia Line was the opening act at PNC Park just a year ago for Jason Aldean.

While their success is limitless, their set list was not, as it was clear the group was running out of original music to fill a lengthy headliner spot and opted instead to perform a number of cover songs. To date, Florida Georgia Line has only produced two albums and three Eps which included less than a dozen singles, most of which did go straight to number one on the charts. In four short years, there’s no denying Florida Georgia Line is branding the music industry with their own, unique style.

Florida Georgia Line was ready to bring the party with hits like “Every Night,” “Round Here,” “Party People” which brought out Thomas Rhett and Frankie Ballard and their most recent single, “Sun Daze.” After exhausting most of their own songs in the first half of the show, Florida Georgia Line kept the party going by giving fans a taste of their musical influences such as Alabama’s “I’m in a Hurry (and Don’t Know Why),” Garth Brooks, “Friends in Low Places,” and Alan Jackson’s “Chattahoochee” and then in a not-so-shocking twist the group explored their rap abilities with “Forgot about Dre” by Dr. Dre and “We Dem Boyz” by Wiz Khalifa before ending their night with the song that shot them to stardom – “Cruise.” They certainly lived up to their tour name!

Adding a bit of fun to the show, magician, Justin Flom, amazed the crowd between the stage changes. During one trick he wowed fans (and delighted two girls) with upgraded pit tickets and then during his final trick, performed impressive card tricks to musical melodies with numbers. It was a great addition to the tour.

Opening for Florida Georgia Line was Thomas Rhett, son of popular country music artist, Rhett Akins. No stranger to the stage, Thomas Rhett delivered a perfect performance featuring his popular hits, “It Goes Like This,” “Make Me Wanna” and “Crash and Burn.” Though he still hasn’t had that huge breakthrough hit, he has a lot of talent and will hopefully find the right song to send him over the top.

Kicking off the show was Frankie Ballard, the 2008 winner of Kenny Chesney’s “Next Big Star” competition. Though he hasn’t quite hit “stardom” yet, he’s working hard with songs like “Hulluva Life,” “Sunshine & Whiskey” and “Young and Crazy.”
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Review by Hayley Lynn Martin for Pennsylvania Bridges

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