Jason Aldean comes to Erie

Jason Aldean is set to visit the Erie Insurance Arena Thursday as part of his 2014 “Burn It Down” tour.

The tour started in Roanoke, Va., on May 1, and runs all the way through the tour’s last stop in Dallas on Oct. 25. Accompanying Aldean on the tour are fellow country legends Tyler Farr and Florida-Georgia Line, as well as Miranda Lambert at certain venues.

The Erie Insurance Arena has played home to many major entertainment events over the years, including its most recent event, Rock the Lakes Erie.

After undergoing renovations in the summer of 2013 to expand things like training rooms, box office, seating and concourses, the Arena is able to seat roughly 9,000 patrons in a concert setting, which will more than easily fit the 7,000 fans predicted by Dawn Betza, the marketing coordinator for Erie County’s Convention Center Authority.

The 49-stop tour revolves around Aldean’s album “Night Train,” released in October 2012. Some of the songs on his set list are from the new record, including “When She Says Baby,” “The Only Way I Know” and “1994.” He also includes some his classic hits, such as “Dirt Road Anthem” and “She’s Country.”

However, there is also an air of caution being taken as the show approaches. After the Luke Bryan show in Pittsburgh left the city’s parking lots littered with trash for days, new tailgaiting rules had to be put into place for concerts in the downtown venues, like Stage AE and PNC Park.

Aldean’s show at PNC Park on July 26 was the first under this new jurisdiction. In addition, following Aldean’s Darien, N.Y., performance, police charged 15 concert-goers with various violations ranging from trespassing to drunken driving.

Despite this history of trouble at Aldean’s concerts, they continue to be a huge draw for country fans everywhere. Aldean’s show at PNC Park on July 26 drew roughly 39,000 fans and was largely a success for the city.

This will be the first visit to Erie for Aldean, after stopping in surrounding areas such as Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Syracuse. All shows, which included Florida-Georgia Line and Tyler Farr, but excluded Miranda Lambert, were largely successful, drawing an average of almost 45,000 fans between those three venues alone.

Erie fans will also be excited for the concert, following the success of the most recent shows to hit Erie Insurance Arena, including Rock the Lakes Erie, “Varekai” from Cirque du Soleil and WWE Live.

“We rely upon promoters to buy the acts and then we rent our facility to promoters,” Betza said, “This fact adds to the magic of the event, for some who understand the inner workings of planning an event of this nature.”

Becca Dambach a senior communication arts major, said she will be attending Aldean’s concert. She anticipates a “great show with a great crowd, and three great artists.” Dambach, a Pennsylvania native, said she is excited to see Erie grow as a cultural spot.

 

TOM BARTON

[email protected]