Kenny Chesney may be taking the year off from one of his giant tours, but Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas has country music’s biggest ticket-seller for four shows in its premiere rock & roll venue The Joint. Easily the most intimate opportunity to see the man who’s won 4 consecutive Academy of Country Music and 4 Country Music Association Entertainer of the Year Awards, the Hard Rock has over a third of Chesney’s live appearances in 2010.
The shows—May 14 & 15 and July 2 & 3—bring Chesney, the face of Corona Extra, back to The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, where he was part of the opening weekend which also included Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi & the Killers. For the man who’s used to rocking close to 60,000 people, the chance to be in a venue where the farthest seat from the stage is merely 155 feet away appeals to the man known for his unannounced Keg in the Closet tours of college and beach bars.
“Obviously we like to play,” Chesney laughs about his band. “The beauty of The Joint is that not only is it a great rock and roll room, but they’ll let us get up there and play… and play… and play. We have so much fun, because we can throw in all kinds of stuff we don’t get to play in our regular show, and the audiences are diverse enough that no matter what we throw at them, they know the songs!”
In April 2009, Chesney not only played many of his songs and covers by a variety of artists—from U2 to Steve Miller, Van Halen to Tom Petty—he also brought his very talented road crew onstage to share in the jamming during his over 3 hour set. No word on what might happen this year, but no doubt Chesney will take his 4 Joint appearances well into Keg in the Closet country.
“That’s what’s so great about a gig where the capacity is 4,000, especially at The Joint,” Chesney enthuses. “It’s the best of both worlds: you get the energy of a club, but it’s still enough of a stage that you’ve got room to run around and have fun. Because when we do these smaller, less structured shows, we like to let loose without tripping over each other or getting tangled in someone’s chord.”
Chesney, who was recently cited by The Los Angeles Times as the 2nd biggest artist of the decade for record sales, touring impact and hit singles, released two albums in 2009: the intimate “Lucky Old Sun,” which yielded the #1s “Everybody Wants To Go To Heaven” and “Down the Road,” a duet with the song’s writer Mac McAnally, and “Greatest Hits II,” featuring “Out Last Night” and “I’m Alive,” a duet with good friend Dave Matthews—and is preparing to record his next studio release.