Dustin Lynch Talks 2015 Hell of a Night Tour: ‘It’s All About Seeing What We Can Do’
Three years after the release of his debut album, Dustin Lynch says that the time is finally right for his very own headlining tour. He's learned some tricks of the trade from Keith Urban and Luke Bryan, with whom Lynch has toured as an opening act; he's got two Top 5 albums and three Top 10 singles under his belt; and he's got a legion of fans, from the East Coast to the West Coast, who can't wait to see him play.
"We’ve learned so much and been to so many places and got to introduce our music to a lot of new faces ... so now it’s time to go back and play our whole show," Lynch tells The Boot. "While we have these months off, it’s like, ‘Let’s go see what we can do on our own. Let’s go see who comes out to see us.’"
From stage designs and setlists all the way down to catering, the "Where It's At" singer is the one calling the shots on his upcoming 2015 Hell of a Night Tour, which kicks off on Nov. 14 in Richmond, Va. Lynch says that it's "a pretty cool feeling" to "get to make the rules ourselves ... but it's also kind of scary, too." Fortunately, Urban and Bryan taught him well.
"Watching those guys, how they handle their village of people and how everything’s choreographed to get in and out of the venues ... All that stuff, you soak in, and then obviously the onstage stuff, as an entertainer, you take into consideration, too," Lynch explains. "I’ve learned so much from those guys. Both are world class. They’re the headliners and superstars for a reason."
But, Lynch stresses, he's got his own ideas, too -- and he's especially having fun revamping his setlist for a longer, headlining slot.
"When you’re opening, you have to get as many songs as you can into such a short amount of time, so there’s no room for any musical tangents. So when we’re headlining, we get to go explore in between songs, and we can kind of weave together some songs," he says. "We’re going to try and make this whole new setlist. For us, it’s nice to have something new. We play so many times a year, these songs, so it’s nice to refresh those and find different ways to interlock songs, and then also morph into some crazy cover songs that nobody would expect us to do; we love doing that …”
Lynch won't reveal which covers will be making their way into his set on the upcoming trek -- "We’re always looking for that song that’s going to be a little different, a little cool, maybe something that critics go, ‘Wow, that’s a pretty big jump they went for there, and they pull it off,'" he says (Drake, anyone?) -- but he did say that some new tunes "might" appear on his setlists.
"I’ll try out some new stuff, just me and the guitar onstage. That’s the best way to judge a song, because when the hook hits, you can see the reaction, if people care about it. If not, they’re pretty much just going to sit there …" Lynch explains. "As far as full band stuff goes, I would love to [add new songs into the setlist], because that’s the best gauge, when you play something live. Even if the crowd -- they’re not going to know it, obviously, so the reaction is what it is, but for me, singing it live and feeling it on stage live is really helpful in determining how we treat it in the studio, whenever we go record the album."
Lynch adds that the 2015 Hell of a Night Tour will be "all about seeing what we can do." He's got shows booked at some pretty big venues -- he specifically mentions Denver's Fillmore and the House of Blues in Boston, both of which hold somewhere in the range of 3,000-4,000 people -- and, as he says simply, "That's a lot of people that are going to have to show up for us to sell that out."
"As a headliner, you want to pack these places out ...," Lynch continues. "My goal is, I would love to sell a lot of these shows out ... so hopefully we can do that in a lot of these towns."
Clearly, the singer-songwriter has nothing to worry about. According to a press release, his Nov. 20 stop in Denver, which went on sale on Aug. 21, sold out in 12 hours.
More information about Lynch's 2015 Hell of a Night Tour, including a complete list of dates and ticket info, is available at DustinLynchMusic.com.
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