“I SKIPPED PROM FOR THIS,” declared a neon yellow sign decorated with black Sharpie. Held up by two teenage girls clad in denim and plaid, the sign expressed the excitement of the younger sector of the audience to see Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert.
It was multicolored cowboy boots, big blonde curls and asymmetric, floral skirts as far as the eye could see. The anticipation was palpable as thousands of fans crowded the entryway of the BOK Center at dusk on April 13.
Although I was high up in the nosebleed section (seriously, the performers were tiny, Indian-in-the-Cupboard-size blips in my vision), I had a clear view of two big screens that projected the three-hour show for even the most elevated eyes to see.
Corb Lund, a down-home Canadian country rocker (those exist?), opened the Launched and Reloaded Tour. After several ballads that were a tad too old school for my taste, Lund finally introduced Dierks Bentley, a tall, handsome drink of water that momentarily made me reconsider leaving the Midwest in May.
Bentley seduced – yeah, I said it- the mostly-female crowd with hits like “5-1-5-0” and “Home.” His sweet love song, “Come A Little Closer,” definitely had Bentley fans on the edge of the seats wishing it would never end. After a 14-song set, Bentley exited the stage, and the real show began.
I’ll be honest with you. I’m not a big country music fan. I don’t have an American flag tattoo. My closet is completely devoid of ten-gallon hats, and may God strike me down if He ever hears the word “Yeehaw!” pass from my lips, but I love me some Miranda Lambert.
There’s something about her – maybe her empowered lyrics or her casually adorable cusswords tinged with a country drawl – but I just adore her music. She just seems like the kind of girl who doesn’t take anyone’s crap. Or maybe that’s her repertoire of songs replete with lyrics about shooting her cheating exes.
She kicked off her set with “Fastest Girl In Town,” which had the audience clapping and screaming. Lambert followed with the girl-power favorite “Only Prettier.” With lyrics like “So let’s shake hands and reach across those party lines/ You got your friends just like I got mine/We might think a little differently/But we got a lot in common you will see/We’re just like you, only prettier,” it was easy to hear a slightly sassier side to Lambert.
She slowed things down a bit with “Over You” for which she won a CMA Award in 2012. She ended her set with an encore performance cover of AC/DC’s “It’s A Long Way To The Top.”
All in all, Bentley and Lambert together made an unstoppable performing team. They built incredible rapport with the audience and thanked everyone several times for coming to see them and “letting them live their dreams.”
My one minor complaint is that Lambert neglected to sing “Oklahoma Sky,” a personal favorite song of mine, and fitting as well.
Lambert and Bentley both noticed the “missed my prom” sign and called the girls out on it. They all agreed it was a concert worthy of missing prom.