REVIEW: Carrie Underwood wows home state crowd
BY JERRY WOFFORD World Staff Writer
Thursday, November 22, 2012
11/22/12 at 1:06 AM
See a slideshow of photos from the Carrie Underwood show here.
There is not a more apt way to describe how the crowd felt after Carrie Underwood's remarkable display of talent and theatrics at her concert Wednesday night than the title of the show.
Blown away by the atmosphere. Blown away by her performance. Blown away by Carrie Underwood.
Before a home crowd at the BOK Center in downtown Tulsa, country superstar Underwood delighted and thrilled fans with a spectacular show.
I'm not the biggest follower of the genre now, but Underwood's style and music Wednesday night took me to my childhood country roots most people in this part of the world have whether they like it or not.
Underwood showed why she is one of popular music's most widely celebrated and adored performers with brow-raising notes few can hit, much less consistently sustain.
Underwood is in the middle of "The Blown Away Tour," named for her most recent album of the same name. That album was named the best country album of 2012 at the American Music Association Awards last weekend.
Her show started with the first track off that album. "Good Girl," immediately hooked the crowd, some of whom likely grew up knowing the girl from Checotah, about 70 miles south of Tulsa.
"I wouldn't be the person I am if I didn't grow up where I grew up," Underwood said.
She also thanked the crowd for the support she has received from the beginning of her career on the fourth season of the talent competition show American Idol.
Underwood won that season in 2005 and won the hearts of millions in the process.
"I never thought I would be on a stage like this," Underwood said. "I know you guys were so supportive of that. You put me up here."
As if she needed to pander to this adoring crowd. They were at her fingertips, singing along most of the night to her hits like "Wasted," "Two Black Cadillacs," and "Temporary Home."
During the song "Jesus Take the Wheel," many in the audience raised their hands as if it was a praise and worship concert, which showed the emotional connection Underwood's audience has to her and her music.
Barely skipping a beat, Underwood laid into "Cowboy Casanova," and it went from a praise concert to gritty, soulful country.
Each note on her range, belted high or softly sung, showed why she was the best in the country and continues to grow.
She could have sat on stage and sung all night under a single spotlight in a t-shirt and jeans and the crowd would have loved it, but the stage was a show in itself. Without spoiling the theatrics here, Underwood had the crowd wowed at several points in the show with a flying stage, giant beach balls and plenty of confetti. And who doesn't love confetti.
There were five costume changes in the show. That's more outfits than I wore this week, and hers looked much better than mine.
Also, be prepared to hear the name Hunter Hayes often. Hayes, who opened for Underwood and sang a duet with her later in the show, may look young, boyish and innocent, but his skillful guitar skills, piano talent and voice fit for country music suggest he could take the top act himself someday soon.
Underwood finished her show with the smash hit "Before He Cheats," and followed with an encore that included "Blown Away," a wild ending sure to last with the crowd.
As thankful as they were to see Underwood, she was as thankful to sing for them back in her home state.
"It's good to be home," Underwood said and she left the stage and the crowd cheered.
MATT BARNARD/Tulsa World