Brad Paisley shifts gears and goes back to basics for Vegas shows

Since 2021, Brad Paisley has built a unique Las Vegas success story that has moved away from the go big and glitz mentality of Sin City and zoomed in on 100% Paisley. Unspoiled, up close and often unintended, his sold-out performances at the Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas struck a different chord with audiences and gave the artist a springboard for new projects. It is set to start again on November 4 and 5, 2022 when Brad Paisley: acoustic storyteller returns to the Encore Theater.

Paisley’s four shows in 2021 and 2022 filled the theater with over 1,400 seats, selling over 5,600 tickets combined – not a surprise from a performer who can fill a stadium, but a welcome one for any party.

A longtime member of the Grand Ole Opry, Paisley has written 21 of his 24 No. 1 hits, won three Grammy Awards, two American Music Awards, 14 Country Music Association Awards, 15 Academy of Country Music Awards and 2010 CMA Entertainer of the Year.

“It’s always special to have the opportunity to see a world-class artist like Brad Paisley in such an intimate setting,” said Chris Hammond, Vice President, Talent for AEG Presents Las Vegas. “It’s like he’s invited you over for a barbecue in the garden and surprises you by pulling out his guitar, opening a beer and telling hilarious stories. You can’t get experiences like this anywhere else.

Back to basics

In the wake of the pandemic lockdown, Paisley used Wynn’s invite to switch gears and host an intimate evening (just Paisley and his guitar(s)) with hits and stories, but one where the audience dictates the show and the setlist. No bells or whistles. No production launch on it.

“We really went to the exact opposite of that, where it’s like, ‘Let’s see how stripped this can be,'” the artist says of conceptualizing the shows.

The introspective approach worked “It was one of the most magical things I can remember,” Paisley says of the first show of 2021. He feared it could be outdone. But each show outperformed the other.

All were exhilarating and exhausting. “It’s a practice,” he admits. A real-time, personalized show in a city with an ever-changing population of ticket buyers means zero predictability and the need to read the audience from start to finish. The audience can dictate, but Paisley is clearly in charge, accentuating hits and guitar mastery with poignant revelation and iconic comedy bits.

work the room

Working in a room is second nature to the performer whose initial training and long-term practices are marked by improvisational storytelling with a touch of improvisation.

“The first weekend, I didn’t know what to expect. And I felt a little guilty for showing up without, as a preparation. But I’ve been playing that way a bit since I was a kid…so, you know, in my hometown, I had to learn how to entertain the Fraternal Order of Antelopes, or whatever, on a given day during a lunch or a weekend dinner where they needed half an hour of entertainment or more. And so I was 14 and I would get up and do a fun Ray Stevens song and then a serious, you know, Vince Gill song or whatever, then I’d tell stories and I had to learn to do it.

Listen to the crowd

Brad Paisley: acoustic storyteller gave Paisley the opportunity to move beyond the soul-searching and loneliness that many artists have faced in 2020 and take the stage to share his ideas and work. It also gains audience perspective via the transactional nature of the intimate setting.

An added bonus – “There’s no distraction from the guitar, vocals and song,” says Paisley. “Anything I want to try again, if it works in that context, I’ve got something. And it’s been fun doing that. I’ve probably played four or five new things over the course of those and I plan to do it this time too. And it’s like anything. It feeds you and you learn from it. I learn from it every time I do one.

Beyond the music

Paisley seems good at taking on projects he loves and enjoys. He has a clothing line moonshine spirit with Boot Barn workwear and western outfitter offering boots, hats, shirts and jeans. “The Boot Barn connection was so much fun,” notes Paisley. “What a great company…a great group of people. And it’s so much fun to walk on a red carpet too. In an environment where rug walkers name Prada and Gucci, he likes to tell the fashion police he wears Boot Barn.

Paisley’s Bourbon brand US Highway Reserve partnering with Bardstown Bourbon Company was also “a blast” for the singer-songwriter who found more than a few similarities between drinking and country music songwriting. Paisley says you can’t rush one or the other and sometimes there’s a little unexplainable magic that results in a real winner.

give back

Beyond Vegas Concerts and Business Ventures is another project as down-to-earth as the artist and any of his tracks. An important initiative and a labor of love for the singer-songwriter and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, The Store is a nonprofit, free, referral-based grocery store that aims to empower people and low-income families in the Nashville area. . Designed to help people get the food they need and can’t afford by enabling them to shop with dignity, The Store has become an essential resource and model for communities. trying to eliminate the stigma of poverty.

As always, Paisley uses her voice to share a story and others take notice, including writer/producer friend Phil Rosenthal (Everybody loves Raymond). The store and its co-founder can be spotted in Netflix’s Nashville-based Season 6 episode of Rosethal
gastronomy and travel series Somebody Feed Phil.

Kimberly Williams-Paisley presents the story behind The Store.

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