Keith Urban - Ak-Chin Pavilion - 9/29/13
One way to reverse engineer the perfect American Idol judge would be to just go to concerts until you find a bunch of people who used to watch American Idol clapping and having a good time at one. I like to think that’s how they found Keith Urban, who had filled Ak-Chin Pavilion’s parking lot with large pickups, unweighted minivans, and at least one semi by the time the opening acts were on stage.
Because if it isn’t, it worked out that way; Keith Urban brought out the ideal Idol viewer in force last night, playing crossover country for people who resent the usual country-music-fan stereotypes while they celebrate them.
I come from a city crawling with Midwestern country fans, and Arizona Keith Urban fans seem to have a lot in common with them: They talk a good, completely sincere huntin’ and fishin’ and churchin’ game, but they’re also mostly middle and upper-middle class professionals, talking about career advancement and wedding anniversaries and nice restaurants.
They’re fashion-forward, that is, it’s just that means cowboy boots and expensive-but-unripped jeans and leather vests here. Which makes sense–leather vests are expensive.
So are Keith Urban tickets, for that matter.
But Urban--like his polished-country fans--is nothing if not a pro; 20 songs later, anyone who values a Keith Urban song enough to buy a ticket in the first place will have gotten his money's worth.