Mark TuckerIn 1997, Garth Brooks’ massive free concert in New York City’s Central Park was an enormous success. So he knew that if and when he came back to the Big Apple, it had to be something equally as special. That’s why he’s performing his first New York-area concert since 1997 at Yankee Stadium.
Speaking with reporters at the Stadium on Tuesday, Garth said, “We have a three year tour right now that we’re in the middle of for North America alone, and New York was not on that tour simply because trying to figure out a way to come back from Central Park, how to do it again. And I think Yankee Stadium is a wonderful way to come back here, if the people show up. It’ll be nice.”
Garth also put paid to the notion that New Yorkers aren’t really into country.
“Probably one of the raw deals that New York gets is their knowledge of country music,” he said, “But every time I’ve ever played here — be it at a club…the very first date we had here, an outdoor park for a Toys for Tots drive, Central Park, Long Island, Madison Square Garden — they know their country music here.”
In 2008, Garth actually performed at a New York City ballpark, but that was under special circumstances. He was a guest at Billy Joel‘s run of shows at the original Shea Stadium, home of the Mets, before it was torn down to make room for the new Citi Field. So, will Billy be showing up at this show? After all, he did join Garth at Central Park back in 1997.
“Right now the drawing board is clear and clean and yeah my thing is, if I could have Billy every night, I would take him every night,” Garth told reporters. “What a sweet man. And I’m also really square and white, probably the squarest whitest guy you’ve ever met, OK? Billy’s just got this soul about him, this coolness about him, that he comes in and takes your music and bends it to where it’s like, ‘Oh, that’s how it should sound.’”
Garth added, “That might be on the drawing board. A lot of it’s up to Billy, of course. And then hopefully, you know, the greatest thing about entertainment, one of the greatest tools you can use, is surprise.”
Garth also said all the fans would get a great view because he’s going to configure the Stadium into what’s called an “Irish Circle.” “What it does is it puts the artist out to the people who made that artist, that’s what I like about it, “he explained. “What the ‘Irish Circle’ is gonna allow the artist and the band to do is get out among the people. They’ll be behind and in front, [and] also make the seats behind home plate like front row seats as well.”
But rest assured that everything that’s going into this show is for the fans.
“They are my boss, never worked for better people in my life. Love it,” he told reporters. “And the great thing about my gig is what is good for them, is good for me.”
Tickets for the show go on sale Friday, May 20 at 10 a.m. ET.
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