Country quartet Little Big Town performs hits

Published 3:50 pm Saturday, August 8, 2009

The lights dimmed as a guitar introduction began, the lights flashed, and the quartet appeared on stage belting out a crisp, confident sound, and it didn’t stop there.

The cool, rainy Minnesota weather didn’t keep fans from filing into the grandstand Friday evening to see the harmonious vocals of country music’s co-ed quartet, Little Big Town, at the Freeborn County Fair.

The weather didn’t only surprise area fairgoers, but it also surprised Karen Fairchild, the brunette in the group. She admitted to the crowd toward the beginning of the show that they thought it would be hot in Minnesota, but instead they were performing on a cool and wet day, something they aren’t accustomed to in Nashville.

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Luckily, the rain held off and the concert went smoothly, flowing from one song to the next with little break time in between songs.

The down-to-earth, fun-loving group kicked off the 90-minute concert with one of their four top 20 hits, “Good as Gone.” The energy on stage surged through the grandstand crowd as fans began to clap and wave their arms in the air.

Little Big Town continued on to play singles from their 2005 smash album “The Road to Here,” including top five single “Bring it on Home,” “A Little More You,” “Looking for a Reason,” and “Stay.”

Unlike other country groups, Little Big Town doesn’t have one lead singer; their songs are either led by one of the four or by all of them in varying combinations, and it was expressed in the set of songs they performed.

The group encouraged fan participation as they said things like, “We brought T-shirts and signed CD’s for you guys,” as they pointed to the merchandise table in the back or when Fairchild said they looked forward to hanging with the audience on their bus after the concert. All they had to do was text a number to win the opportunity.

Throughout the concert the crowd sang and danced, waving their arms in the air carelessly.

When they began to sing, “Welcome to the Family” the audience erupted with clapping and scattered laughter. Then, they sang their leading single, “I’m With the Band,” from their 2007 album, “A Place to Land” and the crowd rose to their feet.

Little Big Town closed with their top 10 hit, “Boondocks,” one of their most well-known singles, as the crowd joined with the group in singing, “I feel no shame, I’m proud of where I came from, I was born and raised in the boondocks.” The energy was soaring as the group waved farewell and blew kisses to the fans and walked off stage.

After taking a short breather, Little Big Town reappeared on stage with their band and performed their surprise radio hit, “Life in a Northern Town” and “Heartache Tonight.”

Little Big Town is currently in the middle of recording their next album. The release date is unknown. Until then they will continue to travel around and write songs and play them for people. According to their website, Jimi Westbrook stated, “There’s great joy in that for all of us. We have a great life doing what we do, and we just want to keep doing it. We want to keep exploring, growing and finding new challenges.”