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Luke Combs & Company Blow the Roof North Charleston Coliseum



Bootleggers Come from All Over to See Nashville’s Current King of Country Music

Jeff Walker, Entertainment Writer

Arguably no on in Nashville has risen to super-stardom over the past five years faster than fan favorite Luke Combs. Although he arrived in Music City in 2014, the 32-year-old singer songwriter began to take country music by storm in 2017 with the release of ‘This One’s for You’. From his debut single ‘Hurricane’ to most recent ‘Doin’ This’ off ‘Growin’ Up (2022) Combs apparently has the Midas touch and can do no wrong.

Three albums into his young career Combs has had 13 consecutive number one songs making his first ever solo tour ‘The Middle of Somewhere‘ one of the hottest tickets across any entertainment genre. This past weekend (Oct 14-15) Combs thrilled over 24K fans during two sold out performances at the North Charleston Coliseum. From fan reaction I sensed he could have easily sold out a third night with several fans admitting they would have welcomed attending another night if they could have secured a ticket.

From his opening numbers ‘Cold as You’ and ‘1, 2 Many’ off his appropriately titled second album ‘What You See Is What You Get’ to what has become his signature song ‘Beer Never Broke My Heart’, Combs commanded the stage and welcomed fans to a no holds barred non-stop country music hit parade. For over 90 minutes covering 20 plus songs, Combs had the audience waiting anxiously on each number he offered up, with most of the crowd singing along to every familiar radio-friendly hit.

Louisiana natives Lainey Wilson and Jordan Davis set the tone for the evening. A CMT Breakout Artist of the Year, Wilson belted out six songs during her 35-minute set including ‘Heart Like a Truck’, and her lone Top 40 ‘Things a Man Oughta Know’. The up and coming 30-year-old paid tribute to a classic rock with a beautiful medley of ‘Rocky Mountain Way’, ‘Gimme Three Steps’, and ‘Travellin’ Man’ giving baby boomers something to remember her by. Wilson struts the stage like a confident young woman who plans to be around Nashville for a long time.

During his five-year run-in Nashville Davis has racked up five Top 10 hits including chart toppers ‘Singles You Up’, and ‘Slow Dancing in a Parking Lot’ from his debut album ‘Home State’. He closed his 40-minute set with his biggest hit overall ‘Buy Dirt’. Garnering over 250 million streams worldwide the 2021 duet he recorded with Luke Bryan spent 24 consecutive weeks on the all-genre Billboard Top 200 chart. Its homegrown heart rendering lyrics have hit a chord with fans and Davis had them singing in unison. His high energy set paved the way for the marquee attraction.

The coliseum was in full country music mode when Combs took to the stage, and North Carolina native didn’t disappoint. With un-abashed enthusiasm and ACDC’s Thunderstruck rocking the rafters Combs jump started his show by asking the crowd if they’d join him for a beer. After flipping his red solo cup into the audience, Combs began his 90-minute musical journey.

With the crowd as the only backdrop and four big screens over the square center stage Combs and his seven-piece band proceeded full throttle. The smaller guitar pick shaped revolving stage housed the drum kit, keyboard, and upright piano, leaving Combs, his three guitarists and bass player plenty of room to move around the exterior.

Five songs in he offered up ‘One Number Away’ which got the remaining crowd on their feet. The up-tempo ballads ‘Forever After All’ and ‘Better Together’ seem to strike the right chords for couples, with the single ladies swaying to the music. The audience were allowed to vote for a Fan Favorite prior to the show, and ‘On the Other Line’ was an ideal number nearing the midway point.

What followed was sure magic, as Combs and the boys paid tribute to 90’s country as he introduced his band with the boys joining on lead vocals to a medley of ‘Two Dozen Roses (Shenandoah) and ‘Chattahoochee’ (Alan Jackson), before closing on a high note with ‘Ain’t Going Down (‘Til the Sun Comes Up)’ by Garth Brooks. The in-your-face montage was more akin to spending time in a honkytonk on a Saturday night.

Combs got the audience super jacked after saying he’d been doing shows up north and it was nice to be in more familiar surroundings, which was a perfect segue way to ‘South on Ya’. Brooks & Dunn’s ‘Brand New Man’ was another welcome throwback as Combs was primed for his pre-encore, ending on two chart topping ballads ‘Beautiful Crazy’ and ‘Best of Me’, before sending out his first number one, with 12K fans providing backup to every word of ‘Hurricane’.

Like the calm before a storm, the crowd slowly erupted into a full-on roar as Combs and company returned to the stage for three song sendoff, with diehards eagerly anticipating the final number. ‘Doin’ This’ and ‘The Kind of Love We Make’ prove Combs is in touch with his audience and is one hell of a songwriter, which ideally includes the only song he could possibly end on. ‘Beer Never Broke My Heart’ has become a country music lover’s anthem and may very well be on its way to becoming the next all time requested karaoke song.

During the 1990’s legendary Garth Brooks was the undisputed ‘king of country’. In the 21st century the crown has been passed around several times with Keith Urban, Luke Bryan, and Jason Aldean all sharing the throne. However, not since Garth has someone taking the mantle so effortlessly as Luke Combs. His songs along with country boy persona resonate with fans of all ages. Quite frankly this current king of country is on fire and has just the right amount of swagger.

Two sold out shows playing to over 24K, Combs is the real deal. Fans came as far away as the UK on Friday night, with Stacey B. and her husband making the trip from New York City to see Combs on Saturday. Stacey admits to being a full on ‘Bootlegger'(members of his fan club). North Carolina native Laura D. not only spent her birthday with Combs, she and her husband were just a few that double dipped, seeing the country superstar two nights in a row.

Girlfriends Hannah S. and Ashley J. made the four-hour trip from the North Carolina because they said Combs is a Tarheel native and they both remember when they could see him for a $5 cover charge playing in bars around Appalachian State. June K. and her husband were spending their 5th wedding anniversary with Luke in front row seats. Judging from the few fans I spoke with several made the trip from North Carolina including June K. and Cory S. Several had plans to see him again in Louisville.

Five years into an already stellar career, a Luke Combs concert is a non-stop hit parade with apparently every song he releases to radio going solid gold. This country boy has the ‘Midas Touch’. Like his most recent hit Combs had the Friday and Saturday night crowd in the palm of his hands, doing exactly what he was put on God’s green earth to do, and that is ‘Doin’ This’.

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