It doesn’t seem the kind of concert offering liberals are going to flock to, but country powerhouse Toby Keith has joined forces with gun-toting classic-rock guitarist and wild man Ted Nugent for a tour that stops by Alltel Arena on Friday, Feb. 11.
Keith, whose “American Soldier” rose to the level of powerful patriotic hymn in 2004 with four weeks at No. 1 on the country charts, two weeks ago released the first single from his soon-to-be-available first studio album since 2003’s smash “Shock’n Y’all.” The new song, “Honky Tonk U,” which debuted on Billboard’s country chart at No. 30, is, according to Keith, a semi-autobiographical tale of his youth and summers spent working in a nightclub his grandmother owned. His new album has a May 17 street date.
In five years, Keith has risen to the top of country music as a singer-songwriter, finishing last year as Billboard’s top country artist, top male country artist, top country album artist and top Hot Country singles and tracks artist. “Shock’n Y’all,” released in late 2003, was the 2004 top country album, with 13 weeks at No. 1 in sales. The single “Whiskey Girl” joined “American Soldier” as a No. 1 song on the country charts during 2004.
His record label released “Greatest Hits 2” in November, and the CD has nearly reached 3 million in sales. Even Willie Nelson took note of Keith’s songwriting last fall when he recorded Keith’s “Tired” on his new album.
Nugent’s most recent visits to Alltel Arena have been to open shows for KISS (that group’s first “farewell” tour in 2000) and Lynyrd Skynyrd, where fans still clamored for his 1970s smash hits “Cat Scratch Fever” and “Stranglehold.” His autobiography, “God, Guns and Rock ’n’ Roll,” was released in 2001.
Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices are $41.75 and $49.75 through all Ticketmaster outlets (most Harvest Foods stores) or charge-by-phone (975-7575) or at the arena box office (975-9000).
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