Brad Paisley

Brad Paisley at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA

Since Brad Paisley released his 1999 debut album Who Needs Pictures, he has become one of the biggest country stars worldwide with each of his albums being Gold certified or higher, 32 top 10 singles of which 19 were number 1 on the Billboard Country Airplay Chart. On top of having major success with his albums, Paisley is also a 3-time Grammy winner, has won 14 Academy of Country Music Awards and another 14 Country Music Association awards, as well as two American Music Awards.

On Jan. 25, Paisley kicked off the first night of his 2018 Weekend Warrior tour which includes 27-dates with opening acts Lindsay Eli, Chase Bryant, and Dustin Lynch. Before Paisley hit the stage,  a medley of the theme songs to Back To The Future, Stranger Things, and Knight Rider played. Paisley came up on a riser behind his band to start the show with “Last Time for Everything,” and played Prince’s “Purple Rain” as an outro.

Just a few songs into the show Paisley handed his guitar to a young fan in the audience and said “I’ll see you up here in about 10 years kid. I’ll be opening for you.” Other highlights included Paisley performing “Love and War,” with segments of the music video for it featuring John Fogerty and his vocal parts, since he was not there in person. Also, Paisley brought out members of the U.S. military to stand onstage with him and introduce them to the crowd.

For the following song “American Saturday Night,” Paisley brought out Chase Bryant. Just two songs later, Dustin Lynch joined Paisley onstage for “I’m Still A Guy.” During the song, Paisley took a phone from the crowd for a selfie with Lynch and made a joke about the phone apps on it and playing with tinder before handing the phone back.  On “Celebrity,” there was various footage from South Park playing on the screen. Once again, Paisley pulled a phone from the audience, but for “She’s Everything,” and recorded video while performing.

To pay tribute to the victims of the recent fires in Los Angeles and surrounding counties, Paisley dedicated the song “When I Get Where I’m Going,” which he performed solo acoustic. Paisley also performed the hilarious “You’ll Always Be My First (Cousin), acoustically. Paisley went to a 2nd stage in the back of Staples Center and performed “Water” and “Streets of Bakersfield.”

Paisley then returned to the main stage to perform “Whiskey Lullaby,” with Lindsay Eli. Paisley closed the show with “I’m Gonna Miss Her (The Fishing Son),” “Mud On The Tires,” and “Today,” before coming back for an encore of “Alcohol” with Eli, Bryant and Lynch.

Text and photos by Alex  Kluft