Review — Tim McGraw Makes Ball Arena Feel Like Skydiving

Denver pulled out all the stops for Tim McGraw’s April 4th show at Ball Arena. The crowd came dressed head to toe in daisy dukes and cowboy hats as the country legend delivered a timeless performance on his Standing Room Only tour. Despite the tour sharing a name with McGraw’s 2023 album, only two tracks from it were featured in the show. Instead, the country music icon treated fans to a journey through his illustrious career, belting out country anthems with lyrics that begged to be sung along to.

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The evening kicked off with an energetic set by Carly Pearce. The country singer commanded admiration from young girls around the arena as her contemporary country tunes infused the room with energy, setting the stage for McGraw’s grand entrance. Between sets, the crowd enthusiastically sang along to various hits, from heartfelt ballads to foot-stomping rock songs, echoing every word throughout the venue.

As the lights dimmed and visuals of a silhouetted cowboy flashed across giant screens, the arena erupted into a roar as McGraw emerged from the smoke-filled center stage, commanding the room with undeniable confidence. The hard-hitting “Truck Yeah” blasted through the arena as McGraw strutted across the stage, brushing outstretched hands and flashing a glistening white smile. The show presented a perfect blend of his rambunctious hits and newer favorites.

Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer” received a charming country rendition, enriched by McGraw’s slight accent. Other throwback hits, like “Just to See You Smile,” stirred up memories of young love and evoked nostalgia among couples in the room. Many audience members have had their lives soundtracked by these songs, evident in the joyous faces experiencing them live.

McGraw’s wholesome audience interactions led to stories about his early career, including playing shows behind chicken wire while having beers thrown at him. This contrasted with the adoration he now receives at Ball Arena, showcasing his experience as a performer. He embodied the essence of his music, blending fun-loving energy with heartfelt sincerity, creating a performance filled with memorable moments. McGraw’s southern charm, finger guns and playful winks sent sections of the audience into hysterics. The love was reciprocated by the crowd, many of whom wore white t-shirts covered in barbeque sauce stains inspired by the chorus of one of McGraw’s most enduring songs, “Something Like That.”

This year marks the singer’s 27th marriage anniversary to the equally iconic Faith Hill. Throughout his set, McGraw shared anecdotes about their relationship and family, with pictures of memories flashing on screens as families in the crowd created their own. Despite some technical errors, the show’s momentum never faltered thanks to the band’s precision and energy.

As the night neared its end, McGraw shifted to his more inspiring tracks, delivering “Humble and Kind” with true conviction. After the emotion died down, he joked about how hard it was to sing that song while wearing skin-tight jeans and a long-sleeve shirt.

McGraw ended the night with the soaring “Live Like You Were Dying,” the classic country anthem that has become a staple of his career. This song exists with all-time great anthems, and it’s evident when the chorus came around. He sang out, “I went skydiving,” and every person in the room belted the lyrics right along. Loved ones were hugging and lovers were kissing. It was pure love and hope pouring through the room.

McGraw still loves performing, and his appreciation for his family, his music, and his fans was evident and endearing. The only thing missing from the night was “Don’t Take the Girl.” As long as McGraw continues to grace the stage with his timeless hits and genuine mentality, fans can expect nothing less than a night of unforgettable music and moments.


All Photography courtesy of  @m2foto

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